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.
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…
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!
Sunday, May 23rd 10 PM = Wayne the Train Hancock @ Public Assembly
Saturday, June 5th 4 PM = Ebony Bones @ Central Park Summer Stage
Sunday, June 6th 8 PM = Ebony Bones @ Southpaw
Friday, June 18th 7 AM = Carole King and James Taylor @ The Today Show
Friday, June 25th 8 PM = Lucky Tubb and the Modern Day Troubadours @ Public Assembly
Friday, July 2nd 7 AM = Mary J. Blige @ GMA Rumsey Playfield, Central Park
Saturday, July 10th 12 PM = Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival @ Tobacco Warehouse (BK Bridge)
Saturday, July 10th 8 PM = The Goddamn Gallows @ The Bell House’s Annual Psychobilly Luau
Sunday, July 11th 3 PM = The Roots with Talib Kweli @ The Prospect Park Bandshell
Monday, July 12th 7:30 PM = George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic @ Wingate Field
Friday, July 23rd 8 PM = Viva le Vox @ Southpaw