Some of you may be familiar with an excellent podcast called Tony Tost's America. If you're not then I guarantee that you'll love it. I was delighted to learn some months ago that Tony was writing a book in Continuum's 33 ⅓ series about Johnny Cash's incredible 1994 comeback album American Recordings. It's a terrific, illuminating read that I'd recommend to anyone who loves…Continue
Bobby Long is fast asleep. He has neatly folded his lanky 6’2” frame onto a barely 5 foot couch. His signature mop of reddish brown hair covers his face. His breathing is deep and even, a far cry from his usual state of perpetual motion.
The young Brit has blown into town for a single show—a sold-out stopover at McCabe’s Guitar Shop, Los Angeles’ last bastion of folk music. He is en route to his first ever tour of Australia, but even this single day is not…Continue
Bom-Bane's, Brighton, UK
5 May 2011
A magical evening at Bom-Bane's - one of the few venues in the galaxy to make the Tom Thumb Theatre feel spacious... The legendary Mike Heron on warm and engaging form, playing two sets of Incredible String Band favourites, with stronger musical support than he's had since the seventies. Perhaps the one obvious gap in a set-list of Heron classics was 'Everything's Fine Right Now' - but if you didn't climb the…Continue
Added by Peter Wrench on May 7, 2011 at 12:30pm — No Comments
Added by John Apice on May 7, 2011 at 9:00am — No Comments
Meet Me At The Moon
Pleasant collection of folk tunes with a country feel brought with warmth from Alaska
Just when you hear one Yukon based performer (last month I reviewed Kim Beggs) along comes another one. Twenty Two year old Emma Hill is picking up critical acclaim as she tours her folk inspired songs about love,…Continue
Added by John Jobling on May 7, 2011 at 1:30am — No Comments
Added by Flying Rooster on May 6, 2011 at 5:00am — No Comments
Sherman Ewing's Single Room Saloon arrived with a sound that is at once intuitive and raw, but somehow well-worn and familiar, too. Some of that could be attributed to the folks featured on the new album, from producer Godfrey Diamond (Lou Reed, Aerosmith, Billy Squier) to John "JoJo" Hermann (Widespread Panic), from Tom Marshall (Phish,… Continue
Added by Something Else! Reviews on May 4, 2011 at 8:30pm — No Comments
A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
April 29, 2011
American music would have been a lot poorer had German immigrant Chris Strachwitz not gotten the weird notion to make trips to Texas to record bluesmen Lightnin’ Hopkins and Mance Lipscomb a half century ago and start his own record company to make these treasures available to the public.
Over the years, Strachwitz’s…
There’s little argument from anyone to say that music is spiritual. Music expresses our deepest longings, passions, pains and joys. Those who go there find a stronger sense of self and others than without it. Especially gifted musicians are able to bring this sense of spirit to their audience. If there’s anything to that statement, Blame Sally is an excellent example. A band of four women, over 40, skilled instrumentalists,…Continue
Added by Terry Roland on May 6, 2011 at 10:00pm — No Comments
Added by Bill Frater on May 7, 2011 at 10:30am — No Comments
New Spring Strings
By Douglas Heselgrave
“Music is better” – Frank Zappa
Music is the most versatile and portable of all the art forms. I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately as I’ve been working my way through listening to a boxful of new CDs while renovating my basement. Literature - unless you’re listening to someone else read - requires a person to stop, sit down and interact with the printed word in an active way. …Continue
Added by doug heselgrave on May 6, 2011 at 12:00pm — No Comments
With their ever-growing popularity and relatively manic tour schedule, I felt lucky to catch my first live Felice Brothers show at Mississippi Studios here in Portland last weekend. While James Felice admitted a few songs in that it had taken a red eye driving marathon for the band to make it to Portland from San Fran in time for the show, you never would have known otherwise. Quite frankly, I was blown away and can state with full confidence that it was the best show I’ve seen…Continue
"The musicians in Moonsville Collective know their songs are always coming up through the landscape--the tradition. They negotiate their way through the ghosts of American history. That struggle we all feel fighting against the isolation of the rootlessness in an age of anxiety."
Words by Matt Shedd
Music by Moonsville Collective
Added by Matt Shedd on May 6, 2011 at 6:00am — No Comments
I first heard Austin Lucas on a song on a promo compilation compiled by Suburban Home Records (specifically Suburban Home Records Mix Tape Volume 5.) The compilation was a great mix of current and classic performers but the song that kept me coming back was a demo version of Sleep Well, a languorous slice of sparse, somber beauty that haunted me and drew me in again and again.
Robyn Ludwick puts real soul into alt-country, Texas style, in her new CD, Out Of These Blues. Ms. Ludwick's songwriting and vocal skills are extraordinary throughout the album. Gurf Morlix produced and played on the record along with an impressive cast including Ian MacLagan, John Ludwick (Ms. Ludwick's husband), Eddie Cantu, Gene Elders, Trish Murphy, and Slaid Cleaves. The end product is one of the best albums I've heard in 2011.
The first track, Hollywood, a song…Continue
Follow Me Down
Sugar Hill SHCD4062
Can America’s latest Teen sensation live up to the hype?
On first listen, Sarah sounds terribly English in her delivery and the overall album is a lot nearer to modern English Folk music than the Bluegrass/Nu-Folk that it’s meant to be. Presumably our friends in the Americas who are getting their knickers in a twist have never heard Kate Rusby, Eliza Carthy or perhaps our…
Review by Doug Heselgrave
John Martyn never made much of a splash in North America, but in Europe and the UK he was a legend for more than three decades. He came out of the same fertile British folk and traditional music scene that gave birth to Pentangle and Fairport Convention at the tail end of the sixties. Like Bert Jansch, John Renbourn and Richard Thompson, Martyn…Continue