In the best beginning of a year I could hope for, I got to watch the artists’ process for a week. Hellbound Glory played a bunch of shows booked near here, and I was happy to host them. I attended two performances and heard Leroy singing this and that off and on. Heaven. More
22 Jan 2014 Leave a comment
in Brooklyn, Music Tags: Adam Kowalski, City Winery, Elektra Records, Hank Williams Sr., Hank's Saloon, Hellbound Glory, Jac Holzman, JD Patch, Jeff Kazee, Jim Morrison, Leon Russell, music, Strand Smokehouse, The Doors
11 Dec 2013 Leave a comment
Untitled, Red, 1968, Peggy Guggenheim Collection
This might be the most disturbing painting I’ve ever seen and I can’t take my eyes off it. From what I gather, Rothko first painted the red series. It was all the passion and fury that red evokes. Before taking his own life, was the black; the eternal void. This was painted after the red, before the black.
09 Dec 2013 2 Comments
in Art, Brooklyn, Music Tags: Biggie, Carrie May, ChristyFestII, crème de la crème, Eminem, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Konrad Wert, Lone Wolf OMB, Olds Sleeper, Possessed By Paul James, Ten Foot Polecats, Valerie June
In tune with the weather, we saw a super storm of fantastic music in 2013. We’re going to be listening to these albums for years to come. I can’t bring myself to put these in order because they mean so many things; they’re not meant to be ranked.
Here are my crème de la crème of 2013:
07 Dec 2013 Leave a comment
In the late 90s, I was fortunate enough to work with His Excellency Carlos dos Santos, Mozambique’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations. At a gathering at his residence, I listened to men talk about a soccer game they went to, where Mandela wore the team shirt and how it changed everything. More
29 Oct 2013 1 Comment
My first listen of There Will be Nights When I’m Lonely, I put on the good headphones, turned up the volume, and closed my eyes. Seconds into Hurricane I was in 110%. That’s his power. He’s our Shaman.
Konrad Wert is a teacher/father/singer/songwriter from Austin, Texas. His achievements include Teacher of the Year, an Independent Music Award for his songwriting, and devotion of fans all over. He is a music aficionado. It’s the sound, the rhythm, the texture. He’s aware of all that surrounds him and weaves it into the human condition. More
26 Oct 2013 3 Comments
in Gigs I've Seen, Music Tags: Black Flag, Brownbird Rudy Relic, Buck Thraikill, Cracker Swamp Prodcutions, Dark Horse Brewing Co., friends, Gold Tone, Hellbound Glory, Jr., Left Hand Brewing, Lone Wolf OMB, Lonesome Liz, Muddy Roots, Nashville, Possessed By Paul James, Rachel Brooke, Ray Lawrence, Scotty Crow, Sean and Zander, Ten Foot Polecats, The Calamity Cubes, The Gladezmen, Triggerman
Another stellar Muddy Roots experience to recover from. Though I missed many who could not make it, the joy and magic is still there. Things could not have happened better. I spent the experience with close friends whom I’ve known for decades and ones I only see here. The serendipitous events of the weekend made it another amazing ride. More
08 Sep 2013 Leave a comment
A mere week after the magic of Muddy Roots 2013 (I’m still processing), Hellbound Glory full band plays one of my favorite venues, The Bell House (also home to my Secret Science Club) and he sang my favorite song, Showing Off Sure is Fun, that he was creating last time they played here. From him snapping his fingers in my kitchen, to a full band with a stadium riff sent me sailing. I wish I could have experienced it large scale. Seeing it at Muddy Roots is a close second. More
11 Aug 2013 Leave a comment
Lone Wolf OMB is a force of nature that is somehow captured and communicated through music. Last year, Don Maddox watched his set at Muddy Roots and told him he’s got the best timing he’s ever heard. It’s true. What he does can’t be done. And on top of that the guy has riffs that just send you spinning. I’ve had this on repeat for weeks and I heartily recommend it.
Above is an album cover youtube I made of the song “The Masked Marvel” which is my current favorite. “Mama’s Boy” holds steady as the sweetest and “Baby, Don’t Hold Back” is another gem.
You can find Mine Us 13 here
18 Apr 2013 Leave a comment
That’s what you get when Wu-Tang raised you.
This video is 110%. Over the top, stoopid budget, win-win fearless fun. It broke YouTube with 1.4 million plays in 24 hours. I bemoan a lot of the modern pop, hip-hop, and country that’s being played on radio and sausaged through media. This is when it all works.
14 Apr 2013 Leave a comment
Fresh on their tour with Kid Rock, our very own Blake got to see Hellbound Glory play and got a backstage interview with Leroy. How cool is that? Better still? He asked all the questions we want answered: More
07 Apr 2013 2 Comments
in Brooklyn, Music Tags: Brooklyn, Dead Amble, entertainment, Jet Black Bullseye, music, Public Assembly, Rachel Brooke, Rebel Angel Productions, rocky horror picture show, rocky horror picture show songs, SlapBack Brooklyn
Not only did Rachel Brooke come to NYC to sing with a full band, we got to spend time together. Rachel with a full band is the bee’s knees. On bass is Brooks Robbins and he is just the coolest cat. We sang Rocky Horror Picture Show songs in the van on the way to the gig. Her brother Andy is on drums and he is so good, and is a fellow sound aficionado. On guitar is Nick who gave me my perfect show moment when I heard him start up Serpentine Blues. During the show, Rachel sang a few songs with just her guitar, and there wasn’t a dry eye in Public Assembly during Life Sentence Blues. More
06 Apr 2013 5 Comments
There is a network of people all over the country who help support underground music: the fans, the bands, the couches, the kitchens, the promoters, the bloggers, the internet radio DJs, and everyone on Facebook and Twitter and YouTube. There is a family in Pennsylvania who opens their home, and fills the venue. BJ and Coley Christy are the creative force behind Silent Storm Design, and the overlords of Silent Storm Radio where different DJs spin their perspective of good music. Their micro-fest last summer, Christy Fest, was a highlight. They host many a musician, and have broadcast live house concerts from their living room. So when they booked the bar in town to host Jayke Orvis and His Broken Band, people came in from hundreds of miles away to be a part of it. More
06 Apr 2013 Leave a comment
In late 70s and through the 80s and 90s, there was a television show on local NYC Public Access called “The Coca Crystal Show“. Coca is my mother’s best friend, and she took me under her wing by appointing me cameraman for the show. By the power of YouTube, I get to watch one of the best shows on television again. More
19 Dec 2012 1 Comment
Rachel Brooke’s new album, “A Killer’s Dream” shows her progression as an artist, and it’s a joy to be a part of as a fan. I still think everyone needs to own her Demos. They are simply a woman and her guitar and it is perfection. With a base so strong, she can only go up. This album wonderfully showcases her progression as a songwriter, instrumentalist, and band member. She collaborates with Viva le Vox (love them!) and I get the feeling they were like kids in a candy store picking and choosing all the instruments heard on this album. It’s old blues and bobby socks.
12 Dec 2012 Leave a comment
in Music Tags: Brownbird Rudy Relic, Husky Burnette, Lone Wolf OMB, Los Bastardos Magnificos, Muddy Roots 2012, Nick Lindsay, No-Brow Productions, Scotty Crow, The Jonny Monster Band, The Scissormen, video
In the post-coitus glow of Muddy Roots, my pal Rev. Nix of Cracker Swamp Productions, got a bunch of the boys in the studio and this is what came out:
Brownbird Rudy Relic = brownbirdrudyrelic.com
Husky Burnette = www.huskyburnette.com
Lone Wolf OMB = www.lonewolfomb.com
Los Bastardos Magnificos = losbastardosmagnificos.com
Scotty Crow of The Gladezmen = www.gladezmen.com
The Jonny Monster Band = www.jonnymonsterband.com
The Scissormen = scissormen.com
No Brow Productions (video) = www.youtube.com/user/nlindsay03
06 Nov 2012 Leave a comment
I’ve tried to write about it, but I can’t. Suffice to say I dodged a bullet.
If you have the comforts of heat and Google, I ask you to please find a way to donate, help, or pray.
Here are images I’ve collected from the internets (and a few of my own):
24 Oct 2012 Leave a comment
18 Oct 2012 Leave a comment
in Art, Music Tags: Bob Wayne, entertainment, Hillgrass Bluebilly Records, Last False Hope, media, Milk Products Media, Muddy Roots, Muddy Roots Festival, Muddy Roots Music, Possessed By Paul James, Saving Country Music, Solitary Records, video
“With a Possessed by Paul James song, the soul is where the song begins; soul is where it is built from.” – Saving Country Music
Recently, Possessed by Paul James unveiled his new website. The photo was taken at Muddy Roots 2011 during a set so powerful, the winds came and shook the entire tent.
And there’s an EPK. Nothing is cooler than an electronic press kit. He talks of community as we’re all over this. We’re the filmmakers, the audience, the interviewer, the trucker hat, and the t-shirt.
18 Oct 2012 Leave a comment
I can’t think of a better way to introduce someone who doesn’t know about Molly Gene other than this video. It was filmed by my friend, Nick Lindsay, and he has captured the hurricane that is her performance. Muddy Roots friends of ours are in the photo collage. I love it.
13 Oct 2012 1 Comment
05 Oct 2012 Leave a comment
The first song I liked by Jay-Z was “Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)” in 1998. As an urchin who grew up with the Broadway soundtrack to Annie on cassette tape, it immediately became my personal theme song. I also remember when Hot 97 was playing The Takeover like a broken record to hype the Nas beef. There is no arguing with me over poorly sampling Jim Morrison.
I think every genre has its masters. Jay-Z came from one of the country’s most dangerous neighborhoods; grew from artist to executive, and still does his art. He’s married to Beyoncé, and is a father for the first time. He is such a great success story. More
06 Sep 2012 3 Comments
in Music Tags: Assjack, Black Eyed Vermillion, Blake Clayton, Bob Wayne, Calamity Cubes, Cousin Wildweed, Dave Dowda, Don Maddox, Dr. Ralph Stanley, entertainment, Gary Lindsey, Husky Burnette, IBWIP, J.B. Beverley, James Hand, James Hunnicutt, James Leg, Jayke Orvis, Jayke Orvis and the Broken Band, Joe Buck, Joe Huber, Joshua Black Wilkins, Kara Clark, Last False Hope, LC Ulmer, Little Jimmy Dickens, Lone Wolf OMB, Lonesome Liz, Mark Porkchop Holder, Muddy Roots, Pearls Mahone, Possessed By Paul James, Rachel Brooke, Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band, Robert Belfour, Sciccormen, Soda Gardocki, Ted Drozdowski, Th' Legendary Shack Shakers, The Dad Horse Experience, travel, vacation, Valerie June, Viva le Vox, Wayne Hancock
Again, I have receipts, notes, stickers, phone photos and videos, and somehow they tell the Muddy Roots story. The stink from my luggage of mud, sweat, and moonshine was enough to keep airport security from thoroughly searching my bag after they found my stash of Gatorade in the side pocket.
This year was about extremes. There were extremely high points and extremely low points. For instance, I, and everyone else, still have not recovered from Possessed by Paul James’s cancellation. I can only shudder to think what must have happened to keep him from us. I send him my best wishes and good luck. That said, DAMN! Eeeeveryone was looking forward to his set. And my personal loss on not seeing Black Eyed Vermillion on stage 3, or anywhere on the grounds. I’ve had a fan crush on Gary Lindsey since he bled and screamed for me back in the AssJack days. Plus, I want to hear his version of the Tom Waits interview.
There were many high points as well. There were sets that melted my face off. James Leg. Scissormen. Dad Horse Experience. Husky Burnette. Lone Wolf. They all KILLED it. But the man who gave me my Muddy Roots religious experience was Dr. Ralph Stanley. Holy moly. Not a dry eye under that tent. I’ll get to all this in a few…
12 Aug 2012 Leave a comment
This is the most innovative video I’ve seen all year. And it’s my favorite song off their new album, Between the Ditches
22 Jul 2012 Leave a comment
I’m calling it now. Best Hip-Hop album of 2012 is Nas: Life is Good. It will take such an epic proportion of amazing to knock this off of repeat on my iPhone that I just don’t have the faith in hip-hop that I used to.
We’re both hitting 40 and it’s fantastic to hear his point of view once more. He’s got his ex-wife’s wedding dress draped over his knee on his album cover. He’s been through it.
The song everyone is talking about is Daughters:
The one I’m playing over and over and I’m head over heals in love with the NYC porn of a video is Don:
No Introduction: Nas waxes poetic about what brought him here complete with electric 80s drum beats. With gems of stories “I remember talking to Biggie inside his Lexus truck, he said stay fly when you’re bumming. Keep your pajamas Armani.” More
01 Jul 2012 Leave a comment
I keep coming back to this video. It’s so pretty and so perfect; a great example to showcase our genre. And, as usual, Triggerman nails it in his review.
25 May 2012 Leave a comment
I enjoy the sharper edges of life; from the stark sculpture art of David Smith to the persona that is Bob Wayne. This cd is not perfect and neither is he. There a few well done acts out there and I like what he has crafted. He gets such inspiration from the life his mother has led and the stories she must have. What he learned from Hank III is play and work at working with the best.
I’m glad I watched the promo video for “Till the Wheels Fall Off” where Bob explains where the title song comes from. Every time I hear the song, I’ll have the context to it which just adds another layer of coolness.
22 May 2012 2 Comments
Still happily buzzing from ChristyFest, Husky Burnette played Rodeo Bar last Friday. And in the coolest of all coolness, my Godfather happens to be Bill “The Lion” Lynas, famous harmonica player from back in the day. This man has played with Muddy, Janis, Etta, and so many more I want to make a documentary about his life. He sat in with Husky. I hit a musical happiness of the uppermost of the toppermost.
Seeing Husky, whom I consider to be of the best of our genre, play with a man I’ve admired since I was in diapers was one of those moments when life comes full circle. To add to the awesomeness, Scott Gibson jumped in on drums at the very last minute and just brought the show together. Thanks dude.
20 May 2012 15 Comments
in Music Tags: ChristyFest, Cracker Swamp Productions, Danny Kay and the Nightliferes, entertainment, Husky Burnette, IBWIP, Kara Clark, Lone Wolf OMB, Olds Sleeper, RNZ Magazine, Robert "Fireball" Mitchell, Sean K. Preston and the Loaded Pistols, Ten Foot Polecats
One of the things I like most about our genre is that we’re so small; everyone pretty much knows everyone and we adore each other like family. BJ Christy and his wife, Coley, invited all of us over to their house in palatial Southern Pennsylvania last weekend for their own mico-festival, ChristyFest. Our friendships stem from Muddy Roots, live podcasts with chat rooms over the past few years, and Facebook. Due to lack of a working teleporter, there were some people who just weren’t able to make it, and they were so very missed by all of us.
I brought with me a visiting friend from London to experience what American music is without Auto-Tuned corporate commercialism. These bands are all working class people. Nobody showed up in a limo, brought an entourage, or presented any airs. Hell, Olds Sleeper slept in tent in the side yard. The rest of us were on air mattresses (why does my butt always wind up hitting floor?) couches, and spare beds.
We came in late Friday night to the hospitality of the Christy Family and friends: Blake Clayton, Podcasting God of IBWIP, Molly Nelson, Andy, Editor of RNZ Magazine, Kimberly Moore (we call her Rosie), Lone Wolf (Brunoooo!) and Mr. Cracker Swamp himself, Rev. Nix (Gary and Melissa got in by the hair of their chinny chin chin on Saturday). The Christy children, Sean, 11, and Liam, 5, are such great boys. Sean is 11 going on 25, and you just wanna smooch and snuggle little Liam. Beej was marinating meats, and futzing with the grill and smoker. Yum. We all stood in a circle under the magnificent night sky until we were too tired to talk.
Olds Sleeper was the first to arrive on Saturday and he and Lone Wolf hit it off and were jamming out on the front porch within minutes. We then moseyed off to the stage under the big tent and the festivities began.
Olds Sleeper started it all and he’s one of those artists that is like a fountain that just keeps giving. At the end of his set, he managed to completely sum up the high and low points of my life of the past year and I got to lay down in the grass and let his music wash over me as he weaved together the songs “May the Circle Be Unbroken” and “Rainy Day Women 12 & 35”. The man is a lyrical genius.
06 May 2012 Leave a comment
in Brooklyn, Music Tags: Arturo Sandoval, ChristyFest, Danny Kay and the Nightlifers, Esperanza Spalding, Farmageddon Fest, Husky Burnette, Jimmy Cliff, Lone Wolf OMB, Muddy Roots, Olds Sleeper, Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band, Robert "Fireball" Mitchell, Sean K. Preston, Ten Foot Polecats, The Goddamn Gallows
Saturday, May 12th = ChristyFest, Shippensburg, PA
Friday, May 18th = Husky Burnette: Rodeo Bar, NYC
Tuesday, June 5th = Jimmy Cliff: Celebrate Brooklyn at Prospect Park
Friday, June 8th = The Goddamn Gallows: The Bell House, Brooklyn, NY
Friday, June 15th = Esperanza Spalding: Celebrate Brooklyn at Prospect Park
Saturday, June 16th = Ice T’s rockdoc “The Art of Rap“
Sunday, July 1st = Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band: Brooklyn Bowl
Wednesday, July 11th = Buddy Guy at World Financial Center Plaza
Wednesday, July 11th = Tchaikovsky NY Philharmonic at Prospect Park, Brooklyn
Saturday, July 21st = Arturo Sandoval: Celebrate Brooklyn in Prospect Park
Friday, July 27th – Sunday, July 29th = Farmageddon Fest in West Yellowstone, Montana (I’ll be there in spirit!)
Monday, July 30th = Public Enemy and Salt N Pepa: MLK Concert Series at Wingate Field, Brooklyn
Friday, August 31st – Sunday, September 2nd = Muddy Roots in Cookeville, TN
04 May 2012 2 Comments
Milk Products Media, who did such fantastic work with the Charlie Louvin documentary, Still Rattlin’ the Devil’s Cage (which, by the power of KickStarter, I am a Producer of) brings to us new greatness. They created a short film to the song “We Welcome You Home” by Possessed by Paul James. It’s beautiful. The man is a Shaman, or some kind of spiritually gifted soul who heals us through his music. And this is the video: (watch it full screen)
18 Mar 2012 2 Comments
in Music, Technology Tags: austin music scene, Chili Cold Blood, Farmer Barrett, Hashknife Outfit, Hellbound Glory, Hillgrass Bluebilly Records, Husky Burnette, Jac Holzman, James “Slim” Hand, James Leg, Lone Wolf OMB, Moonhangers, Old Gray Mule, Owsley Brothers, Patrick’s Beard, Pearls Mahone, Possessed By Paul James, Rachel Brooke, Restavrant, Ruby Jane, Run On Sentence, Soda, Sunday Valley, SXSW, Tom VandenAvond, Water Tower (Bucket Boys), XSXSW5
Take care of the music, and the music will take care of you.
~ Jac Holzman, Founder of Elektra Records
And the momentum of greatness keeps keepin’ on! A gaggle of my favorite musicians, labels, podcasters, bloggers, and fans all gathered in Austin, TX this weekend to showcase our slice of amazing music that is happening today. Here’s the lineup
There’s also a charter: “The idea of XSXSW is to re-focus the event on music and people, to rekindle the spirit of the Austin music scene, as well as civic and Texas pride by using music to renew community, infrastructure, and people, instead of taxing them to their limits.” More
10 Mar 2012 2 Comments
in Music Tags: Austin Moose Lodge, Calamity Cubes, Captain Mudhole, Chili Cold Blood, cracker swamp, Cracker Swamp Productions, Farmer Barrett, Hashknife Outfit, Hellbound Glory, Hillgrass Bluebilly, Husky Burnette, James Hand, James Leg, KVRX, Lone Wolf OMB, Moonhangers, Muddy Roots Music, Old Grey Mule, Owsley Brothers, Patrick’s Beard, Pearls Mahone, Possessed By Paul James, Rachel Brooke, Restavrant, roots music, Ruby Jane, Run On Sentence, Saving Country Music, Soda, Sunday Valley, SXSW, The Real Deal KOOK, Tom VandenAvond, travel, vacation, Walter Tower
Yeah, I said it, Ex South by South West. This is the alternative to alternative. It’s underground music at its best. If I had a teleporter, I’d so be at this! Just look at the lineup! Holy smoke! Thankfully, my pals over at Saving Muddy Hillgrass bring the awesome to me via radio and the internets. Here’s the lowdown via The Trigger Man:
Hillgrass Bluebilly Records, Muddy Roots Music, and savingcountrymusic.com, along with KVRX 91.7, The Real Deal KOOK 93.5, and Cracker Swamp Productions are excited to announce the complete lineup for XSXSW 5, or “Saving Muddy Hillgrass”, a two day event happening parallel with South by Southwest, the annual mid-March music festival in Austin, TX. More
04 Mar 2012 4 Comments
You know that band your friends worship, and for some reason or another, you missed the fan wagon? Hellbound Glory is mine. Trigger Man’s been writing about them forever on his Saving Country Music site. Buddies of mine planned their elopement around them (see video below). I even poo-poo’d their song in my review of the greatest compilation CD ever made! I finally caught the fever when Leroy went live on Outlaw Radio Chicago and was blown away.
They played two shows here in NYC last week (Hank’s Saloon and Rodeo Bar) and I’m fully converted to their awesomeness. Leroy Virgil is the epitome of what a front man should be; talented, street smart, and oh so charming. His raspy voice and gritty writing are the perfect combination that wrap you right in. Eric “Rico” Peterson on Lap Steel is a hundred shades of gorgeous. What girl can resist a man’s instrument that moans and cries out his country songs? Frank Medina on Bass is the music encyclopedia of the band. I wish I had more time to get to know his likes and theories about music. He plays like a philosopher, all in his notes. The three of them combined onstage is fantastic energy. They sing, play, banter, and wholeheartedly kick a world of ass. Each show they pleased the old fans, and made a bunch of new ones.
I had the honor of them crashing at my apartment but, alas, I didn’t think to video a song of them playing in my kitchen for YouTube. Next time. More
04 Mar 2012 Leave a comment
Being Singular Plural offers visitors the unique opportunity to encounter recent and new film, video, and sound-based works by seven of the most innovative and visionary contemporary artists, filmmakers, and media practitioners living and working in India today: Shumona Goel, Shai Heredia, Sonal Jain, Vikram Joglekar, Amar Kanwar, Mriganka Madhukaillya, and Kabir Mohanty. The works included in this presentation reveal the quiet principles of practice, process, and perception, while being grounded in a vital social consciousness. This timely and discourse-defining exhibition is oriented toward coproducing new work, facilitating research, and assembling a community of practitioners.
My favorite was the room with an adult sandbox in the middle. It had different sized rocks, leaves and dirt. You take off your shoes and walk through while listening to your feet touch them via speakers above your head and microphones on the border of the box. It’s like walking along a rocky beach without having to travel. Loved it!
04 Mar 2012 Leave a comment
This year’s Whitney Biennial is … meh. The best part of it was my artist date, Katelan Foisy. We walked in and she said “I want my work to be in The Whitney Museum of American Art” and by the end of the opening, it IS! Girl’s got skills.
There are some pieces that are cool. I really like the organ and some paintings, but overall I get the same feeling I do with American music right now. There is lots of great things happening underground, but they don’t make it to the big time.
15 Feb 2012 Leave a comment
In 1985 I was 13 (an actual teenager!) and was given Whitney Houston’s first album. I squirreled away in my room and played it over and over again. I sat pretzel style, hovering over the turntable wearing huge headphones with a cord as thick as a garden snake. I closed my eyes and escaped in to her voice that asked all my questions and dreamed all my hopes of finding true love. Clive Davis discovered her and paired her with Jermaine Jackson and Teddy Pendergrass. I was in pop music heaven.
Her second album, “Whitney” bore the video I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me); I thought she was perfection. She was my teenage dream and I wanted to be just like her. She was so beautiful, so talented, and had so much fun. I thought she would never have any problems in her entire life. The rest, we know, is history and her battles with demons have been heart-wrenching.
I will always remember her and love her as my ambassador into teenagehood. My warmest condolences go to her family, friends, and us fellow fans who were never the same after we first heard that voice.
12 Feb 2012 Leave a comment
Quite possibly the most beautiful film I’ve ever seen in my entire life:
01 Jan 2012 5 Comments
Of all the horrors and nightmares my life has served up, one of the things I’m luckiest for is where I live now. The story of how I got here is a gem in itself: After being evicted out of Harlem in the early-90s, I landed a roommate share near Gramercy Park in Manhattan in a pre-war 5th floor walk-up for $250/month which I barely afforded on my security guard minimum wage pay. The apartment gave a new meaning to tiny. It was built before indoor plumbing so the new amenities meant the toilet was outside the apartment in a tiny room in the hallway. The shower was in the kitchen and ran off the sink. My bedroom (later converted into an actual bathroom) was 7′x7′ and the walls were lined with clothing racks from my roommates pimp period style of dress. There was no room for a bed. I slept on a stained futon chair and watched a mini television the year OJ Simpson was chased by the police in his white SUV. More
20 Dec 2011 Leave a comment
My neighbors did their own take of Dominick the Donkey and I absolutely love it!
06 Dec 2011 7 Comments
in Music Tags: Amanda Shires, B.J. Christy, Black Friday, Blake Clayton, Bloodshot Records, Bob Wayne, Caitlin Rose, Caleb Klauder, Chris Miler, Cracker Swamp Productions, Down in the Barnyard, El Santo Grial: La Pistola Piadosa, Facedown in the Dirt, Farmageddon Records, Foghorn Trio, Friend of the People, Hank 3, Hank Williams III, Hillgrass Bluebilly, Husky Burnette, IBWIP, It Burns When I Pee, James Hunnicutt, Jashie P., Jay-Z, Jayke Orvis, JB Beverley, Kanye West, Leroy Virgil, Lil Kilm, Little Lisa Dixie, Lone Wolf, Lucinda Williams, Lupe Black, Lupe Fiasco, Muddy Roots, Olds Sleeper, Outlaw Carnie, Outlaw Radio Chicago, Own Side Now, Plainspoken, Rachel Brooke, Rev. Nix, Rusty Knuckles, Seven Devils, Slackeye Slim, Soda, South Congress Sessions, Sud De La Louisiane, The Boomswagglers, The Dad Horse Experience, The Goddamn Gallows, Tim Pop, Triggerman, Willie Tea Taylor
What an amazing year for my underground favorites! Hank 3 became free, Muddy Roots was the festival of all festivals, the podcasting world became my CNN, and record labels turned out greatness like it’s their job.
As for hip-hop, I don’t have anything that gives off fireworks. ‘Lil Kim’s single “Black Friday” was an awesome dis war against Nicki Minaj but then face-planted with the ill planned release of her mixtape. The uber spectacle of Jay-Z and Kanye’s “Watch the Throne” just didn’t do it for me (though I kinda love the fun factor of the Otis video). There’s a new mixtape out by Lupe Fiasco called “Friend of the People” that’s been floating around. The final product is supposedly cancelled and what I’ve heard is very political and just what I’ve missed about hip-hop, but I’ll wait until the release to review it because I’m unsure if my copy’s legit.
A L B U M S :
Bob Wayne: Outlaw Carnie – As much as I think Bob Wayne walks on songwriting water, this cd is just too clean and polished for me. I’m too loyal to the previous releases of most of the songs. That said, I’m on the edge of my seat for his next release which will have the song I saw him write at Muddy Roots!
Caitlin Rose: Own Side Now – Thanks to Triggerman’s review, I bought this cd and it’s always somewhere in my rotation. The songs are well done and I look forward to listening to her future projects. (see video below)
Caleb Klauder’s Foghorn Trio: Sud De La Louisiane – I went to a house party where they played and was instantly captivated by their talent. I got a bit on YouTube and recommend this to anyone whose interested in the country French sounds of the Louisiana bayou. (see video below)
The Goddamn Gallows: Seven Devils – How I love this band! They are so talented and just about nothing beats their live shows. They reminds us why we love punk and what punk should be. More
13 Nov 2011 1 Comment
Nothing makes me happier than when art meets geometry. These sculptures are fantastic. They’re stark and playful at the same time. He’s like Picasso in the form of sculpture. It shouldn’t work but it does and he welds them together intensely. With an electric disc grinder, he polished these strokes and weaves of reflective surfaces in fleeting, chaotic motions. It’s beautiful.
In short, it’s hard to take the full measure of these sculptures and even harder to make the connection between geometry and labor, cubes and anarchy. For that you’ll have to look to the catalog. Its essays stress Smith’s blue-collar credentials, reminding us that he was the son of an engineer and great-grandson of a blacksmith; that he worked as a telephone lineman, a riveter in a Studebaker automobile factory, and a welder at the American Locomotive Company; that he was a proud union member and remained one, even after his art career had taken off. More
13 Nov 2011 Leave a comment
The invitation to The Whitney Museum of American Art opening had an image of a clear crystal skull against a white and gray background. Sherrie Levine’s “Mayhem” had me from the start. But nothing close to mayhem occurs in this exhibition. Over all it is disappointingly sedate, resembling a tastefully appointed art boutique full of fastidious, expensive-looking objects lightly dusted with irony. I’d like to think that Ms. Levine is a better artist than this, but I’m not sure. Whatever life her art has mustered in the past seems to have been mostly left at the door. (NY Times) There are pieces that I love though. The skulls transfixed me and the crystal newborns are mesmerizingly beautiful. More
20 Oct 2011 Leave a comment
This project is controversial to say the least. It’s as if someone found some rough Picasso sketches and asked you to finish them. How could you possibly even pick up a brush? I think Hank Sr. is the best songwriter in American history. There is not one flawed lyric in his entire collection. He was gifted. So a part of me thinks it’s blasphemy to even add your own assumed lyrics to his masterpieces. But then I came across Lucinda Williams’s “I’m So Happy I Found You” on youtube and every single time I hear it, I tear up. I heard she didn’t add any lyrics, just her simple guitar. It’s wonderful. And because of that I can’t stand on a soapbox and yell and scream about how wrong this whole thing is. So I’m going to give this a chance. I would greatly appreciate a PDF attachment of liner notes detailing who added what lyrics. I would have also greatly appreciated the input of his grandson, Hank 3. I don’t think he would have touched it with a ten foot pole, but I now have a wish to see him on stage sing with Lucinda. I think that might beautifully tear my heart right out. –my Amazon.com review
I’ve since listened to it and I think the top 3 songs are: “You’ve Been Lonesome, Too” by Alan Jackson, “How Many Times Have You Broken My Heart” by Norah Jones, and (obviously) “I’m So Happy I Found You” by Lucinda Williams.
09 Sep 2011 4 Comments
in Gigs I've Seen, Music Tags: Aran Buzzas, Baby Genius, Banjer Dan, Cracker Swamp Productions, Farmageddon Records, Hillgrass Bluebilly, IBWIP, It Burns When I Pee, Jayke Orvis, JB Beverley, Last False Hope, Left Lane Cruiser, Muddy Roots, Outlaw Radio Chicago, Owen Mays, Possessed By Paul James, Rachel Brookle, Rusty Knuckles, Saving Country Music, Ten Foot Polecats, The Goddamn Gallows, Wayne Hancock
I have no idea how I’m going to capture the magic of what just happened to me over the past week. I’ve taken notes, saved receipts, downloaded photos from Facebook, and am working on a YouTube playlist.
We arrived at Muddy Roots Friday night and I saw Baby Genius in the sign-in line. We looked like kids at Christmas. Everybody was so stoked to be there. We camped across the dirt road from the people I’ve been conversing with online via blogs and podcasts. The whole night was surreal like you’re walking through a dream state but it’s really happening. We met up and the conversation was so easy and effortless. There was also this great kismet level of timing that I encountered repeatedly with Aran Buzzas. My first star-struck moment was when Pier came and got us to see JB Beverley play Rolling Stones covers while he sat on the trunk of a car. It was surreal. You know that voice like you know your own skin. After that experience, I vowed to wander. So I walked past our tent, up a small hill (the one Miller faceplanted onto) and first thing I found was Bob Wayne’s trailer with him and some friends sitting outside writing a song. And I’m watching the creativity process from Mr. Bob Wayne himself. It was awe inspiring. He’s cool as hell. He remembered me and my friend from the Brooklyn show in July and my heart just about lept out in celebrity joy. Walking around became an adventure. Everybody was there. It was like a family reunion for the family you wish you had. Rachel Brooke was just beaming with fiancé happiness. More
29 Aug 2011 2 Comments
29 Aug 2011 Leave a comment
17 Jul 2011 4 Comments
in Gigs I'm Going to See, Music Tags: Alan King, Attention Deficit Disorder, Cattle Callin, Dave Sherman, Ghost to a Ghost, Guttertown, Hank 3, Hank Williams III, Hellstomper, Les Claypool, Muddy Roots, Primus, The Masquerade, Tom Waits, Troy Medlin
The recent news that’s come out about Hank 3 is a flood of amazing. First of all, on Tuesday, September 6, 2011, he is releasing FOUR new post-Curb era CDs. He wants to come out of the gate strong and his creativity has apparently been a flowing. The first is a double-disc set of his country that we all know and love called Ghost to a Ghost / Guttertown. Guest appearances include the mythical Tom Waits on the haunted “Fadin Moon” from Guttertown and on the Ghost to a Ghost title track, Alan King of Hellstomper, Les Claypool of Primus fame and beyond, Dave Sherman, Troy Medlin and Hank3′s dog, Trooper. Also is the much anticipated release of his ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) album and a release called Cattle Callin, a mix of speed metal woven in and around actual cattle auctioneering. More
10 Jul 2011 3 Comments
in Gigs I'm Going to See, Music Tags: Art Adams Band ( Rockabilly Hall of Fame), Black Jake and the Carnies, Bob Wayne, Burlesque Le Moustache, Calamity Cubes, Cashman, Cletus Got Shot, Country Music Hall of Fame artist Don Maddox of the Maddox Brothers and Rose, Cutthroat Shamrock, Davy Jay Sparrow and His Well KNown Drifters, Derek Hoke, Goddamn Gallows, Graham Lindsey, Hans Condor, Hellbillies, Hellbound Glory, Hellfire Revival, Highlonesome, Hillbilly Casino, James Hunnicutt, Jayke Orvis and the Broken Band, JB Beverley & The Wayward Drifters, Joshua Black Wilkins, Last False Hope, Left Lane Cruiser, Liquorbox, Lucky Tubb and the Modern Day Troubadors, Mark Porkchop Holder, McDougall, Muddy Roots, O’Death, Owen Mays, Peculiar Pretzelmen, Porter Hall Tennessee, Possessed By Paul James, Rachel Brooke, Rev Deadeye, Ronnie Hymes, Scissormen, Sean Wheeler (Throwrag) y Zander Schloss ( Circle Jerks), Slim Chance and the Can't Hardly Playboys, Smokestack & the Foothill Fury, Soda, Spinderellas (Hula Hoop act), Ten Foot Pole Cats, The Dirt Daubers, The Dirt Scab Band, The Harmed Brothers, The Hogslop Stringband, The Krank Daddies, The Legendary Shack Shakers, The Perreze Farm, Thomas Maupin (Champion buck dancer) and Daniel Rothwell., Viva le Vox, Wanda Jackson (Rock n Roll Hall of Fame), Wayne Hancock, Whiskey Folk Ramblers
THIS is the music festival for you if you’re sitting there thinking (a) “I liked country music back when Hank Williams and Waylon Jennings ruled the roost, but what I see on CMT gives me a rash.” or (b) “I was weaned on rock and punk but I also have a Johnny Cash t-shirt.”
It’s during Labor Day weekend in Cookeville, TN (right outside Nashville). There’s camping, hot showers, and they’ll even set up a tent for you to rent. Or, if you’re a city slicker like me, the hotel down the road is $46 pp per night. (All the info is on their website)
And the music. Holy bunches of greatness, the music. The amazing Wanda Jackson is the big cheese, along with Don Maddox and Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers are headlining. I’m looking forward to seeing every other band just as much. Nobody beats the voice of Wayne ‘the train’ Hancock or the pure energy of Possessed by Paul James. I could ramble on an on with my music nerd obsessions here but suffice to say if you’re wondering what’s going on in underground country, this is our Woodstock. So be there, ’cause it’s gonna be great!