Music writer and player, currently writing about wine, music, design and food at Smoke. Bob creates online content and also occasionally posts to Huffington Post. He has written and edited for the Boston Phoenix, MTV, AMC magazine and others, and has published three books. Music-related writing is archived at Smoke.
Rivers flood broad expanses of the Southern imagination. The mythic Mississippi rolls through literature, our watery national spine, by turns torpid and apocalyptic. But there are countless intimate tributaries and every Southerner knows one. Flowing water provides blessed relief in summer, spiritual cleansing and profane recreation. If you grew up messing around in creeks and rivers, you pushed through thick, brown water past insect skaters skimming the surface in sunny pools -…Continue
Posted on May 18, 2013 at 11:00am — 2 Comments
"… common sense tells us that our existence is but a brief crack of light between two eternities of darkness." - Nabokov
The ghosts are there, when we can bear to look. We inhabit the past, or, more properly, the past inhabits us. It's the only dimension we can know (imperfectly, interpretatively), the present being quicksilver and the future merely hope or dread. The past surrounds us like dark matter, dormant and dimly-lit, until animated by brief flashes of memory or…Continue
Posted on February 2, 2013 at 2:30pm
"Ballads lead their life in the mouths and ears of men by hear-say like bluebirds and flickers in the nest of hollow trees." - Robert Frost
Ballads are consequential music. Something happens, often something dark or violent, and effects are felt. Consequences. Hell to pay, whether emotional desolation in this life or divine retribution in the next. Once ballads lost their ages-old function as lurid entertainment and breaking news, they ebbed into the shadowy hollows of…Continue
Posted on November 28, 2012 at 8:30am
The brightest lights of Brooklyn's bluegrass scene are coming together on Sunday, September 23 to help restore an historic, landmark Park Slope church, the "Old First." The number of players and pairings makes this Brooklyn Bluegrass Bash historic in its own right. The Bell House in Gowanus hosts the Bash from 2pm to 7pm.
Chris Thile pairs with…Continue
Posted on September 11, 2012 at 7:00am
If you could conjure a future past, a time both technologically advanced and bucolic, would passionate data shepherds and their inamoratas still prove digitally-rendered pleasures of valleys, groves, hills and fields while gamboling on beds of roses? You may fetch up on such a golden shore while lost in Wild, the new release by The Inner Banks. A musical pastoral from Caroline Schutz and David Gould, Wild paints…Continue
Posted on June 30, 2012 at 11:30am