A Good Read, A Good Listen, A Good Drink: Simon Sinclair, The Big Nowhere

It’s a simple yet sublime pleasure, and just thinking about it can make you feel a little calmer, a little more content. Imagine: You bring out one of the good rocks glasses (or your favorite mug or a special occasion tea cup) and pour a couple fingers of amber liquid (or something dark and strong or just some whole milk). You drop the needle on the jazz platter (or pull up a blues album on your mp3 player or dig out that mixtape from college). Ensconcing yourself in the coziest seat in the house, you crack the spine on a classic (or find your place in that sci-fi paperback or pull up a biography on your e-book reader). And then, you go away for a while. Ah, bliss.

In this series, some of NTSIB’s friends share beloved albums, books and drinks to recommend or inspire.

The Big Nowhere is Simon Sinclair and Billy Crowe, and they are from Glasgow, Scotland.

One time I was casting around for a way to describe them and I landed on “the house band at Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon.” I realize some of don’t know what that means, but what I am trying … Continue reading

The Big Nowhere: Don’t Burn the Fortune

Pull Down the Moon (2012) rollicked and rolled; Don’t Burn the Fortune, the second record from The Big Nowhere, is contemplative, quieter, and a little melancholy, more evocative of a piano bar than a frontier dance hall. Whatever kind of heartbreak you have, they probably have a song for you.

The following are three of my favorite tracks:

365 Sunset Strip-Tease by The Big Nowhere
Margarita by The Big Nowhere
Dancing At The Country Queen by The Big Nowhere
The record is available digitally right now, and as a limited edition 100 CD release on May 1, 2013. The CD booklet will include artwork from some of the Big Nowhere’s friends, including author and comics genius Neil Gaiman; legendary singer-songwriter and BBC6 Music presenter Tom Robinson; TROMA films head and director Lloyd Kauffman; author Christopher Moore; singer-songwriter Stephen Jones (Babybird); singer-songwriters Devon Sproule and Paul Curreri; and comedian Continue reading

The Big Nowhere: Pull Down the Moon

Good morning, NTSIBbers. Some of you may recognize today’s band from their recent appearance at Couch by CouchWest, but for those of you that don’t, please meet The Big Nowhere, from Glasgow, Scotland.

Their line-up is still evolving, but the music I’m bring you today is the work of Simon Sinclair (Vocals, Guitar, Slide Guitar, Organ, Percussion, Melodica, Saxophone), Billy Crowe (Guitar, Bass, Vocals, Harmonica, Banjolin, Lap Steel), Joe Keegan (Piano, Organ) and Peter Morgan (Drums).

Together they make music that sounds like it belongs somewhere (or some-when) a little bit wilder than now; some place and time where people are just starting to build dance-halls on the frontier.

The song that hooked my attention was, as it happened, the first song on the record: Some Kind of Sickness. Something about the tune was familiar, but I couldn’t quite work out what it was – something about the melody, maybe. I found myself humming it at odd moments, trying to figure it out. The penny finally dropped one afternoon when I … Continue reading