Lucy Wainwright Roche

If you've ever seen or heard Lucy Wainwright Roche, then you'll know why I'm re-posting this. I've seen her open for Dar Williams and she was amazing. I also have both her EP's and I'm looking forward to this full length album... She's a great artist with a wonderful voice and personality. And lucky for you, she's going to be the opener for the Girlyman show at the Beachland on Sunday, February 14th. So if you don't like giving money online, you can give it to her in person.

Donate to Lucy's Record!

Dear Friends,
I'd like to thank you for the incredible support you have given me over the last three years. As you know, in June of 2006, I took a deep breath, left my teaching job in New York City, and set out on a challenging but amazing journey into the world of living as a touring musician. So far, this journey has taken me all over several countries, 45 states, and has found me in countless roadside hotels.

I have had many adventures in the past few years and I've gotten to work with so many amazing people from the Indigo Girls and Neko Case to Eddi Reader and Girlyman and, of course, members of my very own BIG family. Most importantly I've had the privilege of playing music in front of thousands of amazing people from all over the world. I am a very lucky person.

As many of you know, I currently have two 8 song EPs out in the world. This fall, I have taken huge step, and one I'm really excited about: I have gone back into the studio and am recording my first full length CD!

I have decided to make and release this new record independently and without the support of a record label. I feel that this is the right way for me to make the best record I can make and get it out to my fans as directly as is possible!

I'm reaching out to you to help me make this record a reality. I have a goal of raising enough money to pay for outstanding musicians, promotion, production and completion of my new record. Please donate what you can! Check out the donation levels - we've put together some things to give you in exchange for your generous support. I promise you I will put my whole heart and soul into this project.

[From Lucy Wainwright Roche]

12 Ways to Scrobble

Keeping up with my geekery... I thought I'd share this article on the plethora of ways to Scrobble. Don't know what it is? Read on... Why should you? It's a pretty cool way to track and share what you're listening to.

Last.fm: 12 Ways to Scrobble

“Audio Scrobbling,” as defined by Last.fm, is the act of submitting to a central database the details of what songs you’ve been listening to (what album, by who and when you listened). Scrobbling to Last.fm is the main reason I use the service these days, especially since it made the internet radio part of it a paid subscription only service for Australia. I think that being able to easily track and visualise my listening history and share that with friends is a great example of the social internet revolution.

There are a number of ways to have your music scrobbled to Last.fm from your Mac. Which one you chose depends on which fits into your music workflow the best.

[From Last.fm: 12 Ways to Scrobble ]

How do I Scrobble you (don't) ask? Coversutra.


La Roux - Bulletproof


Free Remix Here

Cleveland's New Radio Station: Boom! 107.3

Just found out that the station located at 107.3 - "The Wave" has become "Boom!". There's some lashing out about the change on FaceBook, but I can't say I was a huge fan of The Wave before (it was Smooth Jazz). It's now become a Pop/Rock station with artists such as these:

Won't hear many complaints from me... Though I guess The Wave will continue to air on 107.3 HD3.

Website: http://1073boom.com/

FaceBook Page

Bombadil - So Many Ways to Die

Another "Best Song of the Year"... (great video too)


The Cool Ranch?

Have you heard about The Cool Ranch, Cleveland's new DIY music venue at E. 71st and Chester? Have any more info?

All I've found so far is this blog post, and this gallery from the first show. Any links or calendars floating around out there?


Kid Cudi - Pursuit of Happiness

I'm not much for the year-end best of's... but if I were, this is one of the top songs of the year.

Kid Cudi will be performing at the Agora on Friday, January 15th. I believe tickets are sold-out, so if you know of someone who has an extra... let me know wouldya?

More Charts The Record Labels Don't Want You To See

More reason to be skeptical of the "Doom and Gloom" that the big labels are touting. Click the link below for the actual charts.

More Charts The Record Labels Don't Want You To See: Swedish Musicians Making More Money
from the artists-are-doing-better-than-ever dept

We've already discussed the research on the UK music industry that shows both that live revenue is more than making up the decline in recorded revenue and that musicians themselves are making more revenue than ever before. Some people have suggested that this is a UK-only phenomenon, but a worldwide study found the same thing as well. And, now it looks like the same is being found in Sweden as well -- home of The Pirate Bay, which we keep being told is destroying the industry. Swedish indie record label owner Martin sends in the news on data from the Swedish music industry, which looks quite similar to the UK data. First, it shows that while there was a tiny dip in overall revenue, it's back up to being close to it's high, mostly because of a big growth in live music:

Basically, recorded revenues dropped. Collections stayed about the same, but live grew. More importantly, though, is the second chart, which shows the revenue for actual musicians. And that's going in one direction: up.

And yet, The Pirate Bay is destroying the ability to make music, right? Funny that the numbers don't seem to support that at all. Basically, these charts are showing the same thing that those other studies have shown. More music is being created. There is greater "discovery" of new music. There are greater revenue opportunities for musicians, and the only part of the business that appears to be suffering is the part that involves selling plastic discs. Yes, that sucks if your business was based on selling plastic discs, but for those who can adapt and adjust, there is more money than ever before to be made. That sorta goes against the claims that "piracy" is somehow destroying the industry, doesn't it?

[From More Charts The Record Labels Don't Want You To See: Swedish Musicians Making More Money | Techdirt]


Jim Donovan - Night of a 1000 Drums (12/4/09)

I love it when friends get excited about concerts and ask me to come along... it's fun when other people take the concert lead once in a while. My friend John in Pittsburgh was really excited about this show in particular. He had given me a little bit of background on what it would be, but was a little unsure. Little did I know what was to actually happen.

First off, the venue up front was your typical coffee shop / food serving establishment. But you continued through to the back and the environment immediately transformed into this type of Turkish opium den. Pillows and Paisley abounded. The first thing it made you want to do was take your shoes off (which we did). We got a good seat, and by good I mean it was against the wall so we had some place to rest our backs. Much of the seating was just free standing ottomans and pillows. But that didn't matter because people weren't sitting long.

The band took the stage, Jim Donovan was in the back on drums and was host of the night, but he was not the center of attention. There were a couple other gentleman, I would guess were from Africa because of the accents, who were the real MC's. The music was good... Very African drumming and rhythm inspired. My only criticism was the early attempts to involve people in the music through various forms of call and response. People were hesitant to sing-out so early in the night and it made things a little uncomfortable. But not for long.

The best part of the night was the dancing. True we were initially entertained by the few who started dancing the second a hand hit the drum (and who looked like they never got off that acid trip from the 60's), but it wasn't long before we were joining them. I didn't take much in the way of photos because there was a sense of providing a space where people were free to be who they wanted without judgement. I didn't want my taking photos to be seen as paparazzi for something that could have been a joke to some. But to these people it wasn't, and nor was it to our group. A great night was had.

Jim Donovan

Lilith Announcement

In case you missed the Lilith Fair announcement... This lineup isn't as bad as I thought it would be. I've starred some intriguing and respectable choices. There are also some names here that I've never heard and I'll be excited to check them out. Right now, the closest stop is Chicago. Hmm... are there 2 festivals in Chicago for me this year?

We are thrilled to share with you the first round of artists confirmed for Lilith 2010.

Here's also a little article with Tegan & Sara defending the relevance of Lilith Fair

Take a Minute at the Tiny Desk

If you haven't checked out NPR's Tiny Desk Series, they're pretty good. I just stumbled on NPR's own Music Channel on YouTube. Check it out. Here are a couple recent favorites:


Beaten Awake Video

Congrats to NEO's own Beaten Awake for being Spinner's Video of the Day

AA Bondy (12/1/09)

This was one of the best shows of the year for me - as is his new album When the Devil's Loose. You know, I can't even remember how I happened upon AA Bondy, but I'm glad i did. His album struck me right away with it's mellow, acoustic sound. When I saw he was performing at Akron's Musica, I knew I had to go - especially with the openers.

First up was Cleveland's own Lighthouse and the Whaler. They're a good band with a diverse sound. I like what they're working on, with the complex harmonies and all. They'll only get better with more experience.

Willy Mason was next. I'd heard his name several times before, but have never given him much time or effort. He was really pretty amazing. He took to the stage all alone, which was very appropro to his sound. Great, deep voice. Very much a loner, troubadour feel.

AA Bondy finished out the night. The subtle confidence, energy and proficiency of these guys on stage made them a joy to watch. I felt like I was watching some friends play (but really good friends). From the album I was expecting a mellower set, but these guys threw in some major rock-out sessions, playing with some intense feedback interludes. Not my favorite thing, but it worked *really* well. I swear, these guys did NO wrong on stage. I will see these guys again, any chance I can get.

AA Bondy (12/1/09)

I also have to give a shout-out to Musica for being a great venue and keeping a respectable timetable for 3 bands on a week night... and to Akron for it's gracious hosts and free downtown parking.


A Net Neutrality Video Primer - Pay Attention!

Very important...

A Net Neutrality Video Primer

As fundamental as it is, net neutrality isn’t the easiest thing in the world to explain. That said, FMC has certainly its best to illustrate why the open internet is so important to artists and fans (check out our Rock the Net campaign and our body of articles, factsheets and blog posts). As the principle that protects the open internet, net neutrality is important to just about everyone. So it’s crucial that we work to ensure that the internet we know and love isn’t reshaped by a handful of powerful telecommunications and cable companies seeking to install toll booths on the information superhighway.

This video from Jesse Dylan (yes, he is the son of Bob) breaks down why net neutrality is key to expression, creativity, commerce and free speech. Through interview snippets with such luminaries as the “father of the internet” Vint Cerf, Damian Kulash of OK Go, Gigi Sohn of Public Knowledge, Professor Lawrence Lessig and FMC’s own Michael Bracy, the clip demonstrates why open internet structures are essential to our lives as artists, innovators and Average Joes (not to be confused with Mr. Sixpack.)

[From A Net Neutrality Video Primer | Future of Music Coalition]

Matisyahu - One Day (Acoustic) Video

I figured I posted the original, why not post the Acoustic version...


Brett Dennen (11/25/09)

This was the second of a 2 night concert marathon with the Australian. Also another repeat performer for me, having seen Brett Dennen twice before. Once back in 2007 at Akron's sorely-missed Lime Spider, and earlier this year at the sold out Beachland Ballroom show. Both shows were great and I had high expectations for this HOB show. Well, except for the HOB part.

This night was different than the previous two shows. Granted it was the night before Thanksgiving, but there weren't that many people at the show. The performance seemed a little off, like something was missing (the crowd's energy?). Considering that, I think my friends had it right - that his songs began to sound sorta the same. I was still glad we went, but was a little underwhelmed. But I did get to show the Aussie a little bit of downtown (had dinner at Bricco before the show) and I think he still enjoyed himself.

Brett Dennen (11/25/09)

I do think I've exhausted my Brett Dennen concert days, unless a kick-ass new album comes out, or he goes back to playing someplace the Tavern.

Nellie McKay (11/24/09)

Before this night, I've been to two shows total at Nighttown, recently to see Brownout, and my first time to see Nellie McKay. The first showed me the way of Nellie, and the second reminded of how Nighttown is a great evening entertainment destination. Seeing Nellie again on this Tuesday night also included my friend visiting from Australia, so I was particularly excited to show off Cleveland (Heights). This was the second of two sold-out nights, so we got there early to grab a decent seat. Ordered a great meal and watched a highly entertaining Nellie McKay.

As usual, she charmed the pants on the crowd with a variety of songs from Doris Day, a cover of an Ella Fitzgerald song, and even a feminist rant on a Ukelele. One one person insult and make you laugh at the same time, all with a demure and unassuming smile.

Nellie McKay (11/24/09)

Oh, and the Australian was impressed...


History of the Boombox

Very Cool...

The Rural Alberta Advantage Returns

If you missed The Rural Alberta Advantage the last time they were here, you have a second chance. They're coming back to the Beachland Tavern on Sunday, January 17th! I'd suggest you go.

As with all Concert Updates, check out the list of updated shows on the right, or go directly to my Google Calendar.


Flickr Photos

Saw they just released Cooliris Express for making your own photo wall... thought I'd try it with my Flickr Photo account.


Stephanie Nilles (11/22/09)

I love introducing new people to the Barking Spider Tavern, especially people that I think will really like it. Stephanie Nilles sounded like she would be great to see there, especially with descriptions like "Ella Fitzgerald on speed beating the shit out of Regina Spektor" and "Tom Waits on helium." I also talked to Martin (the owner) and he told me he changed his plans that night to see her play. So I knew it was the right night to bring someone new.

She's currently living in New Orleans, but came to Cleveland for school so she has some local connections. She's a master on the piano and has quite the swagger. In addition to performing some great originals, she also had fun with covers such as "What Side Are You", "Superfreak", and Prince's "Kiss." She's also incredibly independent, poking fun at the likes of indie music icons like Grizzly Bear, Bon Iver and Pitchfork. Overall, it was a thoroughly entertaining performance.

Stephanie Nilles (11/22/09)

Apple Buys Lala

I wasn't expecting this... Could be cool. Maybe they'll approve the La La iPhone app now.Apple Strikes Deal to Buy the Music Start-Up Lala

Published: December 4, 2009


SAN FRANCISCO — In the most recent sign that Apple is looking at alternative ways for people to store and play their digital music, the company has agreed to buy Lala, a four-year-old

start-up based in Palo Alto, Calif., a person with knowledge of the deal said Friday.

Lala, unlike Apple’s iTunes, lets users play the music they own from the Web — or in tech industry parlance, from the cloud. If Apple introduces its own cloud-based streaming music service, it would let people skip having to download music they buy or synchronize their music collection between their computers and mobile devices.

A person’s music library would always be available on the Web and accessible on a PC, smartphone or other Web-connected mobile device.

[From Apple to Buy the Music Start-Up Lala - NYTimes.com]


Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros (11/12/09)

Doing some catching up... Not going to have much to say about this show, but will have lots of photos. That may be because of the quantity (and quality) of beer I drank that night. This was my second night in Kent for the Kent State Folk Festival. I think I was trying to re-live my college years or something. It started off with a Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA (20% alcohol - illegal to sell in OH), then two TALL Christmas Ales at Ray's, then several rounds of something after that. Whoa. But man, it would have been hard to not love a show after all that. :-)

We unfortunately missed Unsparing Sea as the openers, but did catch Family of the Year. They were OK... kind of like an Edward Sharpe wanna be band. Okay, that was kinda mean. But again, I was enjoying everything that night. Then Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros took the stage, in all their 9+ band member glory. This was the second time I've seen them and I couldn't have asked for a better venue. Kent Stage wasn't as packed as it was for Old Crow Medicine Show, but it was still a free for all as far as seating, standing, dancing, etc. And dance I did.

They really are a great band. My only complaint is the continued refusal to play Home. I know they're probably sick of people asking for it, but for this show, they brought to audience members (who were probably as drunk as I was) to sing the parts. I was embarrassed for them... But I will see Edward Sharpe anytime they come back.

Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros (11/12/09)


Alanis on Weed

Who knew... :-)

Alanis Morissette Credits Marijuana for Creativity
Posted on Dec 1st 2009 1:30PM by John D. LuerssenComment (1)

Alanis_Morisette.jpgIf her stint on 'Weeds' wasn't enough of a hint, Alanis Morissette openly pledged her love for marijuana in a new interview with High Times. According to the singer, pot helps her with her songwriting and unlocks her creativity.

"I'm all about moderation -- as best I can be," Morissette told the magazine in an interview for its January issue. "As an artist, there's a sweet jump-starting quality to [marijuana] for me. I've often felt telepathic and receptive to inexplicable messages my whole life. I can stave those off when I'm not high. When I'm high -- well, they come in and there's less of a veil, so to speak. So if ever I need some clarity ... or a quantum leap in terms of writing something, it's a quick way for me to get to it."

That said, Morissette acknowledges the drug isn't for everyone. "I have a lot of friends who have wanted to specifically quit smoking marijuana because they felt that it was having a negative effect on their lives, and I absolutely supported them doing so," she added. "Then I have other friends who I've coerced into smoking because I thought it would be great for them."

Morissette, who is photographed in a California marijuana garden for the article, thanked her boyfriend and medical marijuana advocate Tom Ballanco for showing her the drug's benefits.

"I've always resonated with people who are on the front lines," she said. "I've always felt that way about Tom and about the community around him -- Woody Harrelson, Alicia Silverstone. I have a lot of friends around me who are very courageous and willing to 'come out' -- and Tom is definitely beyond the front lines. Any fears that I had about cannabis were quickly assuaged. Now I feel like a professional!"

[From Alanis Morissette Credits Marijuana for Creativity - Spinner]


"Neil Young" singing Fresh Prince of Bel Air

Pretty sweet.


Ban Marriage!

This is a fun video. I used to be a big fan of the Hidden Cameras, probably up until they cancelled their show at the Grog Shop back in 2006. But I guess it wasn't their fault. They are Canadian.

They have a new album out, but haven't given it much time yet. I should.

!! OMG, unplugged backstage: The Hidden Cameras !!
Zack from The New Gay ran into the Hidden Cameras backstage at Washington DC venue the Rock N Roll Hotel last Saturday and convinced them to perform an impromptu rendition of their 2004 anthem "Ban Marriage," in honor of the disappointing decision in Maine overturning the samesex marriage law.
[From !! omg blog !!: OMG, unplugged backstage: The Hidden Cameras]


App Watch: HD Radio for Apple's iPhone - Digits - WSJ

I haven't thought much about HD radio, but this gets me thinking.

App Watch: HD Radio for the iPhone
By Lauren Goode

Third time’s a portable charm — at least, that’s what iBiquity Digital, the company behind HD Radio technology, is hoping with its new app.

The first portable HD Radio device hit shelves through Best Buy’s Insignia brand in July, followed by the launch of Microsoft’s Zune HD in September. At the time there were no HD Radio options for Apple’s iPhone or iPod touch.

Now, there’s an app for that.

[From App Watch: HD Radio for Apple's iPhone - Digits - WSJ]


Low Power FM

This isn't really making the headlines, but Low Power FM is making it's way to the Senate tomorrow... I hope it passes.

Erin McKeown, Nicole Atkins, Indigo Girls & Rep. Mike Doyle Talk Low Power FM in Billboard

These days, there are seemingly endless options for entertainment and information at our fingertips. But how much of it is local or independent? There’s the internet, sure, but it’s not really designed to serve local communities. That’s where good old-fashioned terrestrial radio can fill a crucial void.

Unfortunately, due to massive consolidation in commercial station ownership, much of what you hear on your hometown dial is pretty much what you’d hear anywhere in the country: playlists are narrow and homogenized and even the best indie and local acts have almost no chance of reaching the public airwaves.

In the latest issue of Billboard Magazine, reporter Cortney Harding looks at what LPFM in more communities would mean for artists — particularly the independent variety. Harding talked to some of our favorite musicians, including Nicole Atkins, Erin McKeown and Indigo Girls, as well as Representative Mike Doyle, who co-introduced the Local Community Radio Act of 2009 in the House of Representatives. The article also features a couple of choice quotes from FMC’s very own Policy Director, Michael Bracy.

“There is a real disparity between people who can access the Web and satellite radio and those who can’t,” musician Erin McKeown says. “There are also a lot of people who listen to the radio in their cars out of habit, and it’s easier for them to flip to a new channel than convert to satellite.”

McKeown and others who say they owe their careers to small, noncommercial stations are celebrating a recent victory. On Oct. 15, the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee passed the Local Community Radio Act of 2009, which eases requirements on channel separation between low-power and full-power FM stations, paving the way for more LP FMs to appear on the radio dial. The legislation will now go before the House of Representatives for a full floor vote. . .

“Low-power FM is about creating opportunities and forcing the big broadcasters to compete,” FMC’s Michael Bracy says. “People have a huge desire for these stations. They want to feel like the radio station they are listening to is part of their community.”

Local community support is especially important for indie musicians, who have fought without much success for airplay on commercial stations.

“Obviously, one of the best places for any musician to build their following is on a local level,” says Amy Ray of Indigo Girls. “Think about the Athens [Ga.], Seattle or Austin music scenes. The bands from these scenes were served by a bastion of independent resources — radio stations, record stores and indie media. It’s all tied together. If any of these elements start to fall out of the picture, they are all affected.”
[From Erin McKeown, Nicole Atkins, Indigo Girls & Rep. Mike Doyle Talk Low Power FM in Billboard | Future of Music Coalition]


Valley Lodge - All of My Loving

Hmm... Found this on Boing Boing. I couldn't help but be intrigued... Turns out I like the song. I also kinda like Dave Hill too (after discovering he's also a comedian and checking out some of the clips on his website). But truth be told, the video is the best of all.

Valley Lodge "All of My Loving" from Valley Lodge on Vimeo.


Free Unsparing Sea Show this Friday

Thanks to the Cleveland Bachelor for this one! I unfortunately missed Unsparing Sea's opening performance at Edward Sharpe (and may have to miss this one). But you should definitely get out and enjoy the redeveloping Detroit Shoreway and this Made in the 216 event.

Their new album comes out on Nov. 24th, and you can download a couple free tracks from it here.


Go Afternoon Naps!

Congrats on your AllMusic Blog Review.


Afternoon Naps - Parade
November 12th, 2009 | 5:30 pm est | Tim Sendra

Cleveland, Ohio may not seem like a hotspot for indie pop but thanks to Afternoon Naps, the city is home to one of the best indie pop bands anywhere in 2009. Parade, their debut album for indie pop stalwart Happy Happy Birthday to Me, is a short, sweet confection made from a recipe of classic pop sounds from the past, able songwriting and breezy performances. The ten songs that make up the album hit the sweet spot between tightly arranged pop from the Brian Wilson school, the loose-limbed jangle of the Postcard Records crew, the sunny harmonies and chords of any number of 1960’s sunshine bands and the lo-fi, high energy patchwork of the Elephant 6 collective. Throw in some Felt, a touch of Smiths, then add the ability to take all these influences and turn them into something fresh, and that’s a pretty nice trick

[From The Allmusic Blog » Afternoon Naps - Parade]



Old Crow Medicine Show (11/11/09)

Kent was definitely hoppin' last night... It was a sold out, exhuberant crown last night at Kent Stage for the Old Crow Medicine Show. Unfortunately, in the haste to get to Kent after work, and then to dinner and then to the Stage, I forgot my camera. So only an iPhone pic this time... which is unfortunate because were were up pretty close.

Also unfortunate was my level of excitement at this show. I saw these guys back in 2005 and it was phenomenal...For this performance, tix were $30, they had a full merch table with overpriced stuff (t-shirts $25!), which just puts a sour taste in my mouth. If I'm seeing a bluegrass show, I want it to be rustic and a little more organic... not a marketing machine. And a lot of the performance felt pretty gimmicky, like it's the same routine each city with only a change of the cities being called out.

They still sounded great, and it was definitely high energy. I just had really high expectations for them. I should applaud their success I guess.

Old Crow Medicine Show (11/11/09)
(My Flickr Photoset from '05 can be found here)

Tonight is Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros!!


I'm a little embarassed, but...

I like the new Lady Gaga. I would not say that I'm a fan by any means. I think there's better out there, but I also think there's worse... So the internets have been flooded with her new video for Bad Romance. At first I was just going to avoid it altogether, but figured I'd give in and see what the kids were up to these days. I have to say that I was a little taken aback. I liked it! I liked the song. I also liked the video. It is ridiculous, but I couldn't turn away. I say it's a win. Has me curious what this new album will bring.

Ice Cream Man: Daniel Johnston & Blitzen Trapper @ Austin City Limits

If you haven't seen any of the Ice Cream Man's stuff prior, check him out... (esp. the Deer Tick / Joe Pug episode). He's pretty entertaining.

After Hours at CMA This Friday

How cool does this look?? Click on the link or posters for more details...

The museum closes at 9 p.m. on Fridays … or does it?


Performance art, an electro-squiggle band, and student art are just a few of the things you’ll be able to find this Friday at the Cleveland Museum of Art’s special After Hours party. We’re keeping the museum open extra late from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. and we’re inviting you to stop by and help us keep the party going all night.

To keep you entertained we’ve invited some very unique performers. At 9:30 p.m. New York based composer and artist Marina Rosenfeld will be showcasing her performance art creation the Sheer Frost Orchestra. This one-of-a-kind musical group is executed by 17 mostly female performers who play floor-bound guitars with nail polish bottles. Curiouser and curiouser. The performance should be good considering Rosenfeld’s list of credentials.
Just when you think it won’t get any stranger that’s when the San Francisco based electro-squiggle duo Eats Tapes (Marijke Jorritsma and Gregory Zifcak) takes the stage. They perform at 11:30 p.m. just outside the Gauguin exhibition. Eats Tapes uses hardware sequencers, synths, modified drum machines, cassette players and a midi Nintendo to achieve a psychedelic, art rock sound that is guaranteed to make you want to get up and dance.
[Excerpts From The museum closes at 9 p.m. on Fridays … or does it? « The Cleveland Museum of Art]


Old Crow Medicine Show is Tomorrow Night!


Old Crow Medicine Show: Old-time music for a new age
By Dan Kane

At first listen, Old Crow Medicine Show could be one of those backwoods combos that would sometimes venture out of the sticks near Mayberry on “The Andy Griffith Show.” Heck, there’s even a guy named Critter.

The five-piece acoustic band includes fiddle, harmonica, banjo, guitar and upright bass, and lots of close vocal harmonies. Words like alt-country, Americana and bluegrass are routinely used to describe Old Crow’s sound, but band member Ketch Secor prefers “old-time music.”

For all the band’s vintage trappings, there’s an energy and attitude that is borderline punk rock. And Old Crow’s lyrics, often tongue-in-cheek, regularly celebrate extreme living.

A song titled “Humdinger” on the latest Old Crow album, “Tennessee Pusher,” includes this colorful verse: “Naked horseshoes without care, body surfing on a river of beer, all the neighbors are saying their prayers, we’ll lift our glasses high in the air.”

Old Crow Medicine Show will appear in concert at 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Kent Stage as part of the 43rd Kent State Folk Festival. Tickets, $30, are available at www.kentstage.org.

Secor, who sings and plays fiddle, harmonica and banjo, talked about the band in a recent telephone interview from his Nashville home.

Q. How does your live show compare to your records?
A. The live show is real high-energy, and we put a lot of passion into what we do. Acoustic music sounds best on the stage, and there’s a whole visual component to delivering it. It’s a very physical event playing violin the way I play it. Playing banjo the old-time way means you have to beat on it. When you play this kind of music, you’ve got a whole wave of history you’re dragging onstage with you.

Q. Your music sounds very traditional, but then there are these lyrics about meth, coke, weed and assorted wildness. I imagine that surprises some people.
A. There were some festivals we played when we were coming up where there were some great conservative elements and a lot of gospel music, and we sort of learned to tailor our show for those venues. But, you know, there’s always been a mischievous element to this kind of music. They called it the devil’s music for good reason. That song, “Cocaine Habit,” that we do is 85 years old. People like us because we’re outside the box — and you can sing along to it.

Q. The lyrics of your songs are terrific, so vivid and often funny.
A. Thank you. We learned a lot about songwriting from Gillian Welch, who has an uncanny knack for storytelling. The thing is, you’ve just got to keep writing songs, even though the great ones might have all been written.

[From Old Crow Medicine Show: Old-time music for a new age - Canton, OH - CantonRep.com]



Everyone has one (or several) of those artists... Someone who you continue to follow even though you'd never recommend their new album to a friend. But for some reason you still keep tabs on 4cb88b4f-f06d-4f8d-8c9b-3019110f37b9.jpgthem, whether it's be because you were listening to them during a transitional time in your life, or you're just a completionist and try to have everything from a particular artist. Or maybe I'm just telling my own story and you can't relate at all. Whatever. I'm still glad to see that Melissa Etheridge is going to be giving up on writing popular material. She's been such a SNOOZEFEST this past decade. Her early stuff was great, and I think that's what kept me following her all these years (and other reasons stated above). :-)

Melissa Etheridge Returns to “Slamming” Rock on March LP “Fearless Love”

Melissa Etheridge had a simple message when she met with producer John Shanks to discuss her next album. “I told him that I wanted to make a record that’s a hundred miles an hour all the time — unabashedly drawing from my all of my influences,” she says. “What we’ve done rocks harder than I’ve rocked in years. There’s a couple of ballads on it, but the majority of it is just really slamming.” The disc — Fearless Love — is due in March, with the debut single (also called “Fearless Love”) coming out in January.

Shanks, who has worked with everybody from Ashlee Simpson to Bon Jovi, began his career as Etheridge’s guitar player more than 20 years ago. “He likes to say I discovered him at [L.A. punk club] Madam Wong’s,” says Etheridge. “That’s where I first heard him play.” On Fearless Love, Etheridge says she is no longer trying to write pop hits for the radio. “I can’t play that game anymore,” she says. “You can’t win because if you sound like you are trying to write a pop song nobody likes you.”

[From Melissa Etheridge Returns to “Slamming” Rock on March LP “Fearless Love” : Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily]


Lala's Potential

Having a huge iTunes library is great... what's not great is having to select what I take with me on my iPhone. There are definitely ways to stream my iTunes library to my iPhone, but that typically requires that I have my home computer connected to the internet (not always possible when it's a laptop).

I've also had a friend tell me about Lala lately, which sounds decent, but nothing has really sparked interest with me until I read the article below about Lala streaming your library to your iPhone via their new iPhone app. If Lala can pull this off and do it well, this will be a very tempting service. I'm still not a fan of "renting" music, which is essentially what you do when you "buy" a 10¢ web-only track from Lala, but that may change. And of course they're also more appealing (and probably more stable) because of the additional exposure because of Google.


Streaming From Lala Land

Hey, kids! Wanna stream your iTunes library to your iPhone? Lala’s got your app. Music service Lala showed off its yet-to-be-approved iPhone app, giving users the ability to listen to songs almost instantly and not have to wait for time-consuming downloads.

The idea is simple. Assuming you already own the tracks in your iTunes library, Lala places copies in your digital locker for streaming to your iPhone. Each track you stream comes with a one-time-only charge of 10 cents, after which, you can stream the tunes ‘til the cows come home.

“There’s no downloading, no links to click on, it’s just there,” said Lala co-founder Bill Nguyen, who called the app “the end of the MP3.”

Like Rhapsody’s iPhone app, users are streaming the music from “the clouds.” Unlike Rhapsody, the Lala app identifies the tracks a user listens to most and then stores those songs on the person’s iPhone to allow listening when data connections are weak or nonexistent.

The Associated Press reports it takes about two seconds for songs streaming from Lala to play on iPhones, considerably less time than the two minutes or more it takes for music downloads to land on mobile devices.

There is a catch. Lala is streaming as little as 32 kilobits per second – not quite the same quality as the 256 kbps tunes sold on iTunes and found on most music files already stored on mobile devices. But Nguyen says streaming bitrates will improve as cell phone data networks become stronger.

[From Streaming From Lala Land | Pollstar - The Concert Hotwire ]

...and while writing this article I noticed Lala's embed options, offering to embed the entire track (very important). I went back and re-posted the previous Drummer tracks from this service. I typically use Grooveshark, which has been good to me, but they didn't have Drummer and Lala did. Looks like they get another point.

Drummer (10/24/09)

Drummer has won my heart and ears lately... Sort of a NE Ohio super group, but with a sound and setup all their own.

The Royal Bangs opened the show, which made me really glad I was there early. They were probably the best opening band I've seen in a LONG, LONG time. You should check them out. Then Cleveland's own Other Girls performed next. But as the lead singer from Drummer said earlier to some friends, the Royal Bangs one of *the* hardest bands to follow. Regardless, Other Girls were good.

Drummer took the stage and had an amazing performance... Casual and loose, but friendly and still rockin'. I've really been struggling with how to describe them lately, and that's not really changing here and now. I'm just going to provide some sights and songs for you to experience for yourself. Here are my 3 current favorite tracks.

Drummer (10/24/09)

Drummer (10/24/09)


Kent State Folk Festival Begins Tonight!

I'll be going two nights in a row, and specifically taking a day off to stay in Kent to recuperate and prep for the second night. Aww yeah. Here's what I'm attending.



Two Weeks

If you haven't seen this fan-made video for Grizzly Bear's "Two Weeks" you should... If you have, watch it again.

Two Weeks - Grizzly Bear from Gabe Askew on Vimeo.

You can see the original one I posted here

A Graphic Look At The Rise Of Digital Music - hypebot


[From A Graphic Look At The Rise Of Digital Music - hypebot]


Article: Heavy illegal downloaders buy more music

I would completely agree with this study...


Heavy illegal downloaders buy more music

A new British independent poll conducted by Ipsos Mori concluded that the people who do the most illegal downloading also buy the most music. This is in line with many other studies elsewhere and is easy to understand: people who are music superfans do more of everything to do with music: they see more live shows, listen to more radio, buy more CDs, buy more botlegs of live shows, buy more t-shirts, talk about music more, do more downloading -- all of it.

And of course, these are the people the music industry's supergeniuses have set their sights upon for bizarre enforcement regimes like the one that British Business Secretary Peter Mandelson has promised: anyone who lives in a house that generates three or more copyright infringement notices will be barred from Internet access.

[From Heavy illegal downloaders buy more music - Boing Boing]


Happy Halloween w/ Seawolf: Wicked Blood

Sea Wolf "Wicked Blood"
by alantanner

Lilith Fair

In case you didn't notice, the new Lilith Fair website is up and the initial cities have been announced (Chicago is the closest). I wish I could be more excited about this, as I was for the first iteration, but it's not looking good. The logo alone is unappealing.


I hope I'm wrong on this.


Google's New Music Search Feature

Pretty interesting...

Google Supersizes Music Search

Google brings together My Space, lala, imeem, Rhapsody, Gracenote for robust music search. More partners t.b.a.

(NEWS & VIDEO) Last night Google announced partnerships that will simplify and improve how people find music. As only the tech giant could do, MySpace, lala, imeem, Rhapsody, Pandora, Gracenote and all four major label groups have come together to provide Google content for a new music search engine.

Users who type on an artist's name, album title or a snippet of a lyric will see results that include a single song play button from either lala or MySpace's iLike. A buy option and links to more content are also included, as are links to artist content on imeem, Rhapsody and Pandora. Gracenote is powering the lyric search function.

[From Google Supersizes Music Search - hypebot]


Langhorne Slim (10/21/09)

Langhorne Slim had been on my radar for some time, mostly because of my friend Robin's emphatic recommendation of him. I wasn't able to make it last time he was in town, but checked out his music and liked it. Since then he's released his new Be Set Free album, of which there are some gems on it.

Earlier that evening I skipped my Yoga class and met up with some friends for Happy Hour (a good choice sometimes). After some a couple delicious Bourbon Barrel-Aged Blackout Stouts, I headed to the Grog Shop around 9:30, but in true Grog form, the first act hadn't even started yet. Mike St. Jude & the Valentines opened. A local band who really played with some passion. Not bad. Dawes was up next. A band out of California, they were a little more polished. Again, good stuff, but nothing too moving.

Langhorne Slim took the stage around 11:30ish. By this time, the crowd had grown and shrunk a little. (I mean, this *was* a Wednesday night.) But I stuck it out based on my friend's strong recommendation. Langhorne took the stage with his band a mountain of energy. It was needed. The band was great, Langhorne was definitely energetic and I can see why people love him so. I wasn't as familiar with his songs as I would have liked, but from what I heard before, then hearing them at the show and since, Langhorne Slim has definitely settled in as a strong favorite and someone I would definitely see again. Next time on a weekend. ;-)

You may also note that I played his song Land of Dreams on Shindignation! It's worthy of a reappearance:

Langhorne Slim (10/21/09)

Marina & the Diamonds Videos

You may have heard Marina & the Diamonds' "I am not a Robot" on my appearance on Shindignation! (just below)... Well, I got an update on the new video, and then a friend reminded me of how cool the previous video was. Thought I'd share both...


Friday's Shindignation Show!

If you weren't able to check out my guest appearance on Shindignation! this past Friday, you can listen below.

Thanks again to Rebecca for letting me be on her show, and for basically letting me play all the music! What a great time...



Brownout (10/19/09)

Since starting this blog, I've started to get a LOT more promotional emails. It's great, getting all kinds of updates that I wouldn't have received otherwise. Some of the more savvy promoters are including download links to the entire album. It's these promotions that stand out and make me take notice. In this case, the band was Brownout - which is a band that's a little outside my typical genre(s), but they sounded great! The other part of the promotion was their upcoming show at Nighttown. I checked about scoring some free tix and they obliged.

First off, I really have to give props to Nighttown. What a COOL place. I've been there before, but kinda forget how swanky that place is... To be able to sit down for a great meal and listen to someone like Brownout is just awesome. Show started at 7:00 and was done by 8:30. Perfect for the responsible, music-loving adult. True, the meal may be a little pricier than you're hoping for, but I was able to score a $5 burger at the bar (which was delicious).

Brownout definitely filled the stage, with drummer, djembe, multiple guitars, bass, and a horn section. They're from Austin, TX and have a Latino flavor to them, but they definitely bring in a larger world music vision into their show. Even cooler than that, is the rock and funk elements thrown it. It basically boils down to one hell of a groove. You really should check these guys out if you get a chance.

Brownout (10/19/09)

Check out their video for Slinky:


Tom Evanchuck Videos / Beachland Tavern

Not sure how I missed seeing Tom Evanchuck at the Tavern, but glad there are some videos...

Two more...


You NEED to watch these... Plants & Animals on La Blogotheque

I've been singing the praises of La Blogotheque for some time now, but they've just upped the ante with these couple of videos from Plants & Animals. I saw these guys at Pitchfork last year and have been enjoying their album. These videos take my respect to another level, both for the site and the artist.

I'm embedding the videos here for the lazy people, but if you really want a good experience, follow the link over the the native Vimeo site and watch in HD and Fullscreen. Then just sit back and turn it up.

Plants and Animals - A Take Away Show - Bye Bye Bye from La Blogotheque on Vimeo.

(note the kitchen window and the baby backup vocals)

Plants and Animals - A Take Away Show - Feedback in the Field from La Blogotheque on Vimeo.

New Stanton Record Player

I'm such a dork... just had to share my new purchase.

New Record Player
New Record Player

Of course then I also had to organize my small record collection...



Martha Wainwright Covers Edith Piaf

I haven't spent much time with Martha Wainwright since her first album, but that's nothing on her. I think she's a phenomenal artist, and if I would trust anyone to pull off Edith Piaf, it would be her. (No US release date?)

Sans Fusils, Ni Souliers, A Paris

Martha Wainwright's Piaf Record

UK, Ireland, Europe, Japan, and Southeast Asia -- NOVEMBER 9th
Australia -- NOVEMBER 13th
Canada -- SPRING 2010

Martha Wainwright stamps her je ne sais quoi on a beautiful selection of rare and acclaimed Edith Piaf songs, passionately sung and romantically interpreted by Martha on her stunning album 'Sans Fusils, Ni Souliers, A Paris. Martha Wainwright's Piaf Record' out November 9th.

The album was recorded over three intimate performances in New York's Dixon Place Theatre in June. Produced by Hal Willner, Martha Wainwright assembled a unique band of musicians including long-time collaborator Brad Albetta, who produced Martha's first two albums, pianist Thomas Bartlett and electric guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Doug Wieselman to capture the French chanteuse's venerable catalogue, beautifully coupled with Martha's incredible, evocative and characterful voice.

Cautious of avoiding the cliche of looking sad, pretending to be drunk with a glass of absinthe on the table, Martha creates tension and urgency on this charming 12-track record - delivered with paralleled emotion conveying Edith Piaf's mystical vulnerability. Highlights include 'Adieu Mon Coeur', 'Vieux Piano', 'Une Enfant' and a transfixing version of 'Le Foule'.

Growing up in Montreal and speaking French at school, Martha was totally influenced and captivated by Piaf as a child, having listened to her music since the age of eight. "There are certain things about her that I have always been influenced by," says Martha. "The emotive sensibility of her voice. She's an incredibly emotional singer and I've always been an incredibly emotional singer and pained singer."