Bits: Pinetop Perkins, The Dead Milkmen, Arthur, The Twilight Singers, CXCW

  • Blues piano great Pinetop Perkins has passed away at the age of 97. Perkins played with Robert Nighthawk, Earl Hooker, Muddy Waters, was the oldest Grammy winner and toured until the end.
  • The Dead Milkmen have released their first album of new material in 16 years. You can listen to song samples and download The King in Yellow at their website.
  • Arthur is dead, long live Arthur. While music and culture mag Arthur has gone on “indefinite hiatus”, they have begun archiving their back issues online. While it’s a work-in-progress, there’s already a lot to dive into.
  • The Twilight Singers will be hitting up Letterman on April 26.
  • Even though Couch by Couch West is over, one of the advantages it has over SXSW is that you can still experience all the music – and see the hipper-than-humans dog and cat contingent – on the CXCW Tumblr. And you should. Great performances from Conrad Plymouth, Doc Dailey, Tim Lee 3, Two Cow Garage, The Imperial Rooster, Neko Case (that’s right – Neko Case. In bed. You didn’t get that at South By) and so many more talented … Continue reading

Bits: TV on the Radio, Booker T. Jones, J Mascis, Mark Lanegan, Royal Bangs, Patrick Sweany, CXCW, etc.

  • TV on the Radio’s Gerard Smith was diagnosed with lung cancer at the conclusion of recording for the new TVoTR album Nine Types of Light and will be unable to accompany the band on their current tour. A statement on the band’s website throws a hopeful light on Smith’s recovery, and we are sending good thoughts Smith’s way.
  • Head over to the Rolling Stone website to get a taste of the new Booker T. Jones album as he and the Roots cover Lauryn Hill’s “Everything is Everything”.
  • NYC’s Bowery Ballroom will play host to a show celebrating the 10th anniversary of one of my favorite books, Michael Azerrad’s Our Band Could Be Your Life, on May 22.
  • The 2nd installment of Oxford American’s ABALABIP! concert series celebrating Alabama music and music makers will take place on June 4 in Florence, Alabama, and will feature Dexateens, G-Side and Candi Staton.
  • J Mascis’ new acoustic album, Several Shades of Why, is streaming at Spin.
  • A new Mark Lanegan track, “Burning Jacob’s Ladder”, is free to download on the Rage website.
  • And a new Royal Bangs track, “Fireball”, is … Continue reading

Bits: Railroad Revival Tour, SXSW, Raekwon, Booker T. Jones, Shivering Timbers

  • Old Crow Medicine Show, Mumford & Sons and Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros will be kicking off the Railroad Revival Tour on April 21. The bands will travel by train across the southwestern United States and perform at outdoor venues in California, Arizona, Texas and Louisiana. Not quite as fun as the Roots on the Rails shows since the audience won’t get to travel on the train with the bands, but a unique and cool gimmick nonetheless.
  • Our friends at Ninebullets.net will be throwing a couple of fine parties at SXSW this year – on March 18 and 19 – featuring artists like Caitlin Rose, Kasey Anderson and the Honkies, Two Cow Garage, the Only Sons and more. Details here.
  • If you can stand heading over to MySpace, you can stream Raekwon’s new album Shaolin Vs. Wu-Tang.
  • Booker T. Jones will be releasing a new album, The Road from Memphis, on May 10. THe album is produced by Jones, ?uestlove and Rob Schnapf (Beck, Elliot Smith), and Jones is backed by the Roots.
  • Shivering Timbers will be in the WRUW studios on March 31 around 5 PM EST. … Continue reading

Massive Tour Alert: Casey Neill and the Norway Rats

The first time I saw Casey Neill was at the Mercury Lounge in the East Village, somewhere around 2008, when he was one of the opening acts for New Model Army. (There were three; one of the other ones was an instrumental Goth band. It was, as you might be gathering, quite an unusual evening.) In any case, he played this song . . .

Casey Neill – We Are The City


Watch this video on YouTube

. . . and it immediately became one of my favorites, because, if you’ve ever wondered what the DNA of New York sounds like, there it is. This is the city I am homesick for when I am wandering on far distant shores.

The BIG NEWS that I have for you today, ladies and gentlemen, is that he has gathered up his band, the Norway Rats, and they are hitting the road on a scale not seen since 2007, making numerous stops in the Mountain West and also at South by Southwest. He (and … Continue reading

Bits: Eddie Kirkland, TV on the Radio, Conrad Plymouth, Chip Tha Ripper, Jessica Lea Mayfield

  • Bluesman Eddie Kirkland was killed in a road accident this passed Sunday. Our hearts go out to his family, friends and fans. I’m glad I had the pleasure to see him live this past autumn when he opened for the Gories.
  • The first track to be revealed off of TV on the Radio’s forthcoming album, Nine Types of Light, can be heard on the 107.7 blog.
  • Our friends Conrad Plymouth, accompanied by Strand of Oaks, did a set for Folkadelphia. It will air tonight between 6 and 8 PM ET.
  • Cleveland’s Chip Tha Ripper has a new mixtape, Gift Raps, at Rap Radar. Digging it as I type…
  • Kent, Ohio’s Jessica Lea Mayfield made her Letterman debut (with brother David Mayfield, formerly of Cadillac Sky, currently of the David Mayfield Parade, accompanying her) last Friday. Check it out below.

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Bits: Patrick Sweany, Infantree, Shivering Timbers, Bill Withers, Empires

  • Patrick Sweany was featured on Cleveland public radio program Around Noon this past Thursday. A lovely interview with a couple of wonderful live songs. Listen here.
  • Infantree will be re-releasing their album Would Work in a re-mastered version at the end of April.
  • Akron’s Shivering Timbers are venturing out beyond Ohio and will be playing Nashville, Tennessee – February 25 at the Basement and February 27 at the 5 Spot. Their album, We All Started in the Same Place, is now available on iTunes.
  • Still Bill, a documentary about the amazing Bill Withers is now airing on Showtime.

And, from Jennifer:

  • Empires, scrappy little band of my heart, has a shot at being the first unsigned band to be on the cover of Rolling Stone. They are from Chicago, and when I last discussed them on NTSIB , I described them as a “punch drunk love affair” and that description is still true. Their sound is big and raw and sexy and, basically, rock and roll at its finest.

    Please, NTSIBbers, go and vote for them here at Rolling Stone, and then … Continue reading

Bits: TV on the Radio, Over the Rhine, Jessica Lea Mayfield, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Royal Bangs

  • Yay yay yay! TV on the Radio will be releasing a new album, Nine Types of Light, this spring. And April 13 will be TV on the Radio City Music Hall day as they play a gig at the famed New York venue to kick off a national tour. I’m a little excited.
  • Over the Rhine’s new album, The Long Surrender, drops today, and you can listen to it Spinner. (Nicole Atkins’ Mondo Amore is up there, too.)
  • It’s the day of streaming (for a given value of “streaming”), as Jessica Lea Mayfield’s latest, Tell Me, is up at Rolling Stone.
  • In sad news, Justin Robinson will be leaving the Carolina Chocolate Drops. But CCDs will continue on with two new members, multi-instrumentalist Hubby Jenkins and beatboxer Adam Matta.
  • Our friends at Citizen Dick have a track for you from the upcoming Royal Bands album, Flux Outside. The album is set for release on March 29.

To close out a live video of Over the Rhine performing “The Laugh of Recognition”.

The Laugh of Recognition from Sneak Attack on Vimeo.

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Bits: the Dirtbombs, the Grande Ballroom, the Black Keys, Shivering Timbers, Jamie Stillman, Drive-By Truckers, Carolina Chocolate Drops

  • Stream the new Dirtbombs album Party Store at the Detroit Free Press. Do it now!
  • Speaking of the greatness of Detroit music, there’s a campaign on to fund a documentary called Louder than Love: The Grande Ballroom Story, about the enormous, once-majestic venue that played hosted to local Detroit legends like the Stooges and MC5 as well as national acts like the Who.
  • The Black Keys brought tales of urine-soaked minivans to NPR’s Fresh Air yesterday. Listen here.
  • Baby You Can Drive My Car shares a lovely performance and interview with Shivering Timbers.
  • The Akron Beacon Journal has a nice article on Jamie Stillman (he of Drummer, Harriet the Spy, Party of Helicopters, Relaxer and about umpteen other projects) and his effects pedal business, Earthquaker Devices.
  • The Drive-By Truckers reunited with Jason Isbell for an evening in Huntsville. You can download the show.
  • The Carolina Chocolate Drops have released a collaborative EP with Luminescent Orchestrii, and CCDs will begin their 2011 tour tomorrow in New York with a show at Lincoln Center.

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Bits: Juniper Tar, Mike Watt, Sebadoh, Fugazi, The Black Keys, Sonic Youth, Jon Walker, Michael Runion

  • The good guys in Juniper Tar will be taking part in the Pablove Benefit Concert at Turner Hall Ballroom in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, this Saturday, January 29, 2011. The show, “a special evening to improve the lives of children with cancer”, kicks off at 5:30 PM and also includes Cory Chisel, Fitz & the Tantrums, an acoustic set from Brian Aubert and Nikki Monninger of Silversun Pickups and more.
  • Stereogum has a free download of “Arrow-Pierced-Egg-Man” from Mike Watt’s latest, an opera called Hyphenated-Man.
  • Sebadoh’s Bakesale is being reissued with bonus material on April 4, 2011. In support of this, Sebadoh will be touring the United States beginning in February (including a stop at the Grog Shop in Cleveland on April 2 – coincidentally, just days after J Mascis brings his acoustic tour through the Grog ).
  • The Fugazi documentary Instrument will be screening at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, on February 27, 2011. Director Jem Cohen and members of Fugazi will be on hand for the screening.
  • If you missed it, the Austin City Limits Sonic Youth/Black Keys split episode can now be viewed … Continue reading

Deep Blues Festival Returns! To Cleveland!

From Deep Blues Festival organizer Chris Johnson:

“You heard the rumors and the rumors are true! After a one year hiatus, Deep Blues Festival rides again. This time around, Deep Blues Festival is a totally artist driven one day event in Cleveland, Ohio at the infamous Beachland Ballroom on July 16 2011!

So what is Deep Blues Festival? It is the biggest outsider blues festival in the country. If you like your blues music to involve creativity, originality and proof that this is still an immensely vibrant musical form…then this is the festival for you.

DEEP BLUES FESTIVAL 2011
Sat July 16 2011 5pm-1:30am
THE BEACHLAND BALLROOM
15711 Waterloo Road – Cleveland, OH
12 BANDS – $20.00!!”

Past Deep Blues Festival performers have included straight-up blues artists like T-Model Ford and CeDell Davis on through to blues-influenced acts like Scott H. Biram, Patrick Sweany, Black Diamond Heavies, Radio Moscow and Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers, to name just a few. So, you’d be well-advised to block out your calendar for this one and keep your eye on the Deep Blues Festival Facebook page.

Check out T-Model Ford laying it down at the 2009 festival.

**Update**
The … Continue reading