Saturday, September 26, 2015

See you in Franklin: Pilgrimage Fest Day 1

Up, at 'em and on the road to the first Pilgrimage Fest. Some tough decisions about which acts to see. I predict some stage hopping in our future.

Excited to see Christone "Kingfish" Ingram open up the fest.

From there our plan is:

  • Holly Williams at noon;
  • Madisen Ward and The Mama Bear at 1:15 p.m.;
  • Hopefully, we'll catch some of Neko Case's set starting at 2 p.m.;
  • Iron and Wine or Will Hoge around the three-o'clock hour;
  • Really looking forward to Cage the Elephant at 3:30 p.m.;
  • Sheryl Crow at 4:30 p.m.;
  • The legend who is Dr. John at 5:45 p.m.;
  • And the end of Wilco's set wrapping up around 7:45 p.m.

That leaves out Punch Brothers, Nikki Lane and a whole lot of other great acts. But so far, right now, that's the plan and you know what's said about plans. Stay tuned for what really happens. And if you're at @PilgrimageFest this weekend shout at me @RadioBarz on Twitter.

See you at the Fest.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Jason Isbell - 24 Frames (Lyric Video)

Song of the year? Album of the year? Artist of the year? Works for me. And a new dad, too. "24 Frames" -The most striking worm ever to fabulously infect my ear.


Sunday, September 6, 2015

Keith Richards, Gary Clark Jr. and more upcoming releases

Looking forward to a lot of great fall releases, including:
  • Beach House, Depression Cherry (out now)
  • Gary Clark Jr., The Story of Sonny Boy Slim
  • Jewel, Picking Up the Pieces, September 11
  • Keith Richards, Crosseyed Heart, September 18
  • The Dead Weather, Dodge and Burn, September 25
  • Kurt Vile, B'Lieve I'm Going Down, September 25
  • Eagles of Death Metal, Zipper Down, October 2
  • Ryan Adams, 1989 (in the works)
What new music is on your future playlist?


Friday, August 14, 2015

August 14 Playlist: All Beat Farmers, All the Time

The Beat Farmers almost ruined me for live music. Two dynamite shows at The Canal Street Tavern in Dayton, Ohio, July 1986 and September 1987, were the two most bombastic, wildly enjoyable live music experiences of my life. I could have stopped going to shows right then and lived off the memories of those two performances the rest of my life.

The Beat Farmers' music propelled me through mid- and late-1980s road trips, all-night listening parties and summer BBQs. The band mixed country western and rockabilly sensibilities with chunky, raw power chords. Imagine Buck Owens playing with ACDC. And they had a wild card like no other band before or since -- drummer, singer and raconteur Country Dick Montana.

I loved the originals like "Bigger Stones," "Never Going Back," "Riverside" and "Selfish Heart." And the Farmers had the best taste in covers, from Bruce Springsteen's "Reason to Believe" to Neil Young's "Powderfinger" and Country Dick's rowdy rendition of Johnny Cash's "Big River."

The Beat Farmers - Big River

Sadly, The story of The Beat Farmers ended with Country Dick Montana's untimely death on stage in 1995. But the band's legacy and my memories of two amazing nights at The Canal Street live on.

It's Friday. They are The Beat Farmers. Turn it up.

Nice history of The Beat Farmers by the San Diego Reader.

The Beat Farmers at The Belly Up Tavern, complete show, 1992.

The Beat Farmers, Universal Studios, 1985.

The Beat Farmers - Channel 33 KCOX TV San Diego, 1984.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

August 13 Playlist: Fred Eaglesmith, Water in the Fuel

Because when you're out on the road alone and you know that you'll be alone when you arrive, the best thing to do is keep driving, even if the light keeps coming on. The original sends chills every time I hear it and it's a great live tune. Also love Kasey Chambers' cover.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

August 12 Playlist -- Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood, "Some Velvet Morning"

Remember how I said Nancy Sinatra's "These Boots are Made for Walking" took me down a musical rabbit hole when I was six years old? Well, it happened again. And here I am at midnight listening to Nancy and Lee sing "Some Velvet Morning."

Talk about a song that sets a mood. "Some velvet morning when I'm straight / I'm gonna open up your gate / and maybe tell you 'bout Phaedra / and how she gave me life ..."

So trippy. So groovy.

I love the tension between Lee and Nancy's delivery in this song. There's a slight unsettling quality to Lee's vocals, like a guy coming out of a particularly good acid trip he desperately wants to return to, while Nancy or Phaedra is smooth and dreamy like, well, velvet.


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

August 11 Playlist: Kacey Musgraves -- These Boots are Made for Walkin'

I was not quite six years old when Nancy Sinatra released "These Boots are Made for Walkin'" and even at that young age it made quite an impression. In many ways, "These Boots..." was my gateway song to "Dusty in Memphis," Dean Martin's "Houston," Roger Miller's "King of the Road" and The Johnny Cash Show.

Yes, "Houston" and "King of the Road" were both released a few years earlier than "These Boots...," but this was the 1960s when songs hung around longer than a wink and a whistle. One of the great things about discovering a breakthrough favorite song is that it takes you both back in time and into the future.

Written by long-time Sinatra collaborator and unsung American music legend Lee Hazelwood, "These Boots..." combined rock attitude with country sass. And Sinatra's delivery was pure rocket fuel.

"These Boots..." as been covered by artists as diverse as Loretta Lynn, Jewel and Megadeath. More recently, Kacey Musgraves has taken her boots for a spin and she delivers. Not only is it a great cover in its own right, but it cleanses the palette nicely from that unfortunate Jessica Simpson version.


Monday, August 10, 2015

August 10 Playlist: Ryan Adams -- To Be Young (Is To Be Sad, Is To Be High)

It's was a Ryan Adams kind of weekend for me. First the news that made the Internet kind of explode: Adams will cover Taylor Swift's 1989. Check out this tease for his version of "Bad Blood."

Then watching "Old School" (again) on Saturday evening, I was reminded of the great Adams song, "TO BE YOUNG (IS TO BE SAD, IS TO BE HIGH" that kicks off the movie. And I can't stop listening to it.

I admit, I'm late and slow the the Ryan Adams party. My loss. But I'm making up for it with the old stuff, the new stuff, and evidently, with a coming cover of a Taylor Swift album.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Jason Isbell featured on CBS Sunday Morning

Jason Isbell is truly an amazing songwriter and his new release, "Something More Than Free," is one if my favorite albums of the year.

August 9 Playlist: Keith Richards, solo


Looking forward to the September 18 release of "Cross-Eyed Heart," Keith Richards' third solo album. Any New Barbarians fans out there?

How about the X-Pensive Winos?

Monday, March 16, 2015

My 2015 SXSW Must-See List

Of course, I won't see them all. And they'll be some not on the list that I will see along the way. With that disclaimer out of the way, here's my 2015 SXSW Music Must-See List. Who's missing from my list? Who will you see at SXSW 2015?

1Count this Penny
1The Family Crest
1Irene Diaz
1Madison Ward and the Mama Bear
1Aisha Burns
1Ben Caplan
1Fantastic Negrito
1Courtney Barnett
1Family and Friends
1Ruby Jane
1Steve Gunn
1Jorma Kaukonen
1Ray Wylie Hubbard
1Hypnotic Brass Ensemble
1Jitterbug Vipers
1The Lowest Pair
1Del Barber
1James McMurtry
1Jon Dee Graham
1Asleep at the Wheel
1The Lowest Pair
1JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound
1Bill Kirchen
1TV on the Radio
1Jon Langford
1The Zombies
1Chuck Prophet
1Giant Sand
1Chip Taylor
1Bill Carter
1Wild Child
1Grand Analog
1Whiskey Shivers
1The Mastersons
1Doug Seegers
1Leon Bridges
2The Stray Birds
2Charlie Belle
2Baptiste Hamon
2Kristin Diable
2San Fermin
2Lila Anne
2Big Phony
2Cleopatra Degher
2Della Mae
2Jesse Moore
2San Tanveer Brothers
2Skinny Lister
2Pirate Canoe
2American Aquarium
2Delaney Davidson
2Elsa Cross
2Velvet Caravan
2Strong Like a Horse
2Laura Marling
2Bobby Bare Jr.
2Jeff Austin
2Heartless Bastards
2Julianna Barwick
2Call Me Lolla
3Meg Mac
3Austin Basham
3Strawberry Runner
3Oxford & Co.
3Jukebox the Ghost
3Summer Cannibals
3Hanne Kolsto
3Emmy the Great
3The Dove and the Wolf
3Humming House
3The Last Bison
3Magic Giant
3Tom Brosseau
3Portugal, the Man
3Twin Peaks
3Waco Brothers
3Robert Earl Keen
3Freedom Fry
3The War On Drugs

Monday, February 16, 2015

SXSW2015, Susan's picks of the day, folk and steel drums

This will be my fifth and Susan's first trip to SXSW. She's been gracious about accepting my showcase suggestions and today, she shared a few good ones of her own, including five from the folk list and one steel drum band.

Here are Susan's SXSW picks of the day:

1. Luluc (NPR Tiny Desk Concert)

2. Ben Caplan - Down to the River. 

3. Skinny Lister

Skinny Lister, Tiny Desk (NPR)

4. Ruby Jane - Ticket Out

5. Madison Ward - If I Ain't Got You (cover)

And now for some steel drum...

6. Codrington Pan Family

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

SXSW 2015, The List: Jay Nash & Josh Day are the Contenders - Live at SPACE, Evanston

Like the flow, the like harmonica. Will try to find a way to see Jay Nash & Josh Day are the Contenders at SXSW.

"Maybe Katy" - Live at Space (one of my favorite venues, Evanston, Illinois)

Jay Nash, "Blame it All on the Wind"

SXSW 2015, The List Good Harvest

Swedish Americana? Swedish Alt-Country? The Swedish Indigo Girls? Sounds like sweet music to me. See you at SXSW, Good Harvest.

"Long Way Around"


SXSW 2015, The List: Delaney Davidson

"I Slept Late," chka-chka-chka guitar, deep in the holler vocals and-out of-nowhere the horns with a tinge of Mediterranean twirl: Delany Davidson makes my SXSW list.

Lots of songs about sleep and sleeping too. Never a bad thing. "Sleeping Woman,":

Monday, February 9, 2015

SXSW 2015, The List: American Aquarium

I've been a fan of American Aquarium since my friend Kevin saw them live a few years back and sent me a couple of their CDs. A few years ago, the band recorded a great Daytrotter session with a cover of one of my favorite tunes, Miss Ohio. They make my "want to see" SXSW list for 2015.

SXSW 2015, The List: The McCrary Sisters

Yes, I like my gospel with a double dose of soul. The McCrary Sisters may make my final SXSW schedule. 

SXSW 2015, The List: The Jones Family Singers

Now this is more like it. If I'm looking for a gospel act, my tastes run to those groups likely to rattle the rafters. I think The Jones Family Singers qualify.

And at The Continental Club...

SXSW The List: Kirk Franklin

With a a few exceptions, this is my first time going going to SXSW without any hard/fast must-see artists. Looking to stretch the my schedule to check out bands and singers from a range of genres, like gospel. Starting my list with Kirk Franklin.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Rosanne Cash Takes 3 Grammys in Pre-Show Awards

Congratulations to Rosanne Cash who earned three Grammys in the preshow awards: best American roots performance, American roots song and Americana album.

Read more.

Twitter List: 2015 Grammy "Live Tweeters"

Check out this Twitter list of 2015 Grammy live tweeters from @TwitterMusic.

Who's live blogging the Grammys?

Here's a list of the media outlets that are live blogging tonight's 2015 Grammys:

2015 Grammy Predictions from Forbes and 5 Others

Your Grammy Preview Round Up

Bob Dylan's Thoughtful MusicCares Speech (Rolling Stone)

Bob Dylan didn't have to sing to make an impact at Friday's MusicCares ceremony. Jack White, Bruce Springsteen, Bonnie Raitt, Beck and Neil Young were among the artists providing the musical tribute.

More Dylan MusicCares tribute news:

Iconic Rock Star Photo by Henry Diltz (CBS Morning News) #Grammys

35 iconic photos by legendary R&R photographer Henry Diltz of Frank Zappa, Buffalo Springfield, Cass Elliot, The Lovin' Spoonful, and The Hollies and more (CBS Morning News).
The Best Of Buffalo Springfield: Retrospective
"Epic Anthology": From The Original Master Tapes!
Greatest Hits: The Mamas & The Papas

Legendary Rock Photographer Henry Diltz profiled on CBS Sunday Morning

Lots of great #Grammy and music-related features on CBS Sunday Morning today. This feature on legendary rock photographer Henry Diltz brought we directly back to the 1960s.

More on Henry Diltz: