Archive for July 2012
I couple days ago I received a heads up from Andy regarding Carrie Rodriguez making a stop at his and Laura’s house for an intimate little gig. Confirmation has now been received. This from Andy:
Well, we finally hammered out the final details and here they are for the Carrie Rodriguez show.
It will be on Wednesday, August 15. Mingle at 7 pm, show at 8 pm. Tickets $25 each. BYOB Please email (rajco[at]telusplanet[dot]net) or call (403)357-4728 to reserve your seats.
The Jeans Joint is very excited about this show. Carrie will be travelling with a full band and is only doing two dates in Alberta on this tour.
Please note – there will NOT be a meal served before this show (but I’m sure MrsJeans Off has something up her sleeve, snackwise).
Hope to see you at the Joint!
Laura and Andy
Not much more to say- should be a brilliant night of music. Andy and Laura always put on a nice evening, and Carrie’s music is first rate: her recent Live in Louisville set is an engrossing documentation of modern Americana featuring first rate musicianship and an alluring vocal presence.
As always, thanks for visiting Fervor Coulee. Donald
With another sign that the Mayans were right, snippets of both “God Save the Queen” and “London Calling” were heard in the opening cross-country video montage as the opening ceremonies commenced. Maybe those sheeps and maypoles will make sense after all.
Not roots, but still…thanks for visiting Fervor Coulee. Donald
Over at Fervor Coulee Bluegrass (http://www.countrystandardtime.com/blog/FervorCouleeBluegrass/entry.asp?xid=912) I’ve advanced the forthcoming Blueberry Bluegrass & Country Music Festival to be held at Stony Plain Aug.3-5, 2012. Blue Highway, The Gibson Brothers, Rhonda Vincent, and others appear over the course of three days.
Thanks for visiting Fervor Coulee. Donald
Sam Baker, Carrie Elkin & Danny Schmidt To Perform Trio Shows In Alberta
Regular visitors to Fervor Coulee will know of my appreciation for the music of all three of these individuals. I’ve written about Sam here http://fervorcoulee.wordpress.com/2010/02/15/gurf-morlix-sam-baker-february-14-2010/ and elsewhere, and about Carrie and Danny here http://fervorcoulee.wordpress.com/2011/02/27/danny-schmidt-carrie-elkin-reviews/. As none of the following locations are within three hours of me, I won’t be able to attend, but sure would like to- well worth investigating if you are anywhere closeby. See below- thanks for visiting Fervor Coulee.
(All info courtesy of Martyn, www.GoToAGig.com )
Tour Dates ***Links to tickets & information for ALL dates at: www.gotoagig.com***
July 30 Nanton AB – The Auditorium Hotel
July 31 Medicine Hat AB – Ye Olde Jar Bar House Concert
August 1 Lloydminster SK – the root: community emporium
August 2 Elk Point AB – Mona’s Place House Concert
Carrie and Danny are also at the Canmore Folk Music Festival, and all three are at the Calgary Fest.
Austin’s Sam Baker was recently in Alberta & BC for several small-venue dates and festivals. After heading back Stateside to perform at the 15th Annual “Woodyfest” in Okemah, Oklahoma Sam returns to Alberta to participate in the Calgary Folk Festival (July 26-29) & their Songwriter Bootcamp.
Fellow Austinites, singer-songwriters Carrie Elkin & Danny Schmidt are also at the Calgary Folk Festival, so it just makes sense to get these three friends together for a few smaller shows. They will perform FOUR DATES ONLY before Carrie & Danny head off to play at the Canmore Folk Festival (August 4-6) and Sam heads home to dedicate some more time to his next release.
Carrie recorded her latest CD “Call It My Garden” in Sam’s living room. The disc includes “Dear Sam”, a song written especially for her friend.
Carrie & Danny are partners in life as well as music. They have both had their separate careers for many years, recently becoming labelmates on the renowned Minnesota based roots label Red House Records. The label has just released a 2-track digital EP as the duo’s very first true collaboration. It’s now available at: http://itunes.apple.com/us/preorder/together-single/id542435232
Sam, Carrie & Danny take every opportunity that comes along to perform together, and those opportunities don’t happen too often, so GoToAGig is especially proud to present these shows for the pleasure of the lucky folks who will get to attend them.
Tune in to “Wide Cut Country” on CKUA to hear all three of these performers LIVE from The Calgary Folk Music Festival.
Find out more and enjoy a preview of what you’ll see & hear when these three friends perform.
Sam Baker Website: www.sambakermusic.com Carrie Elkin Website: www.carrieelkin.com Danny Schmidt Website: www.dannyschmidt.com
Carrie Elkin “Jesse Likes Birds”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_YYmjLQAa4 Carrie Elkin proves she doesn’t really need a mic on “Amazing Grace”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clo5Txg1utc&feature=related Danny Schmidt “Swing Me Home”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WAV61XZ1erg Danny Schmidt “Dark Eyed Prince”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tyEpCDTQUA Carrie & Danny performing “Company Of Friends” together: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=boqQxwiUT2A Sam Baker “Pony”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxBb5kFK3Mo W / Radoslav Lorkovic (accordion) and Tim Lorsch (mandolin) Sam Baker “Mennonite”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-c_nI5GT5E&feature=relmfu W / Tim Lorsch (mandolin)
Gordie Tentrees North Country Heart www.tentrees.ca
Writing about his Yukon surroundings- the natural land as well as the people- has taken Gordie Tentrees to the next level.
Firmly entrenched in the same singer-songwriter mode as Corb Lund- especially on the talking blues of “Sideman Blues” and “Hill Country News”- Tentrees’s forthcoming album North Country Heart is his strongest yet. And that is a fairly high bar as his previous efforts Mercy or Sin and Bottleneck to Wire were fairly marvelous.
Recorded in Whitehorse with Bob Hamilton, start to finish North Country Heart is likely the finest collection of songs that Tentrees has recorded. While individual lyrical pieces capture the attention of listeners (“Blessed and bestowed bitten from the start, there’s nothing out there like a North Country heart” and “This is not another tune for you, wrote enough of them to see me through” from “Last Word”), the melodies capture the moods as accurately as his words.
On “Lone Sparrow,” the melody holds the lyrics close. The instrumentation- including lonesome pedal steel- punctuates the melancholy. The sagely worded “Black Seeds” is another standout track, as is the album’s lead number “Gypsy Wind.”
Tentrees has created a cohesive collection of images and sounds that hits emotional marks without resorting to manipulation. Heard without advance warning, one could be convinced that this is the new Corb Lund or Hayes Carll album and not be a bit disappointed. Tentrees has learned from the best: Fred Eaglesmith, John Wort Hannam, Ray Wylie Hubbard.
North Country Heart is evidence that he hasn’t just learned the tricks of the trade: Tentrees has become a stellar songwriter and roots vocalist.
Various Artists Foggy Mountain Special: A Bluegrass Tribute to Earl Scruggs Rounder
Starting about six years ago, a handful of sessions were held in a pair of Tennessee studios. Gathering were several of the finest contemporary bluegrass musicians representing the most influential groups of the day, among them Union Station, Mountain Heart, the Del McCoury Band, and Kentucky Thunder.
Alongside these powerful sidemen (a list which includes Dan Tyminski, Clay Hess, Jason Carter, Randy Kohrs, Ron Stewart, Barry Bales, and Adam Steffey) some of bluegrass music’s most influential and revered banjo players were assembled. The five-string players cut a huge swath through the premier bluegrass pickers: from Jim Mills, Dave Talbot, and Charlie Cushman, to J.D. Crowe, Joe Mullins, Kenny Ingram, and more.
All came together to bring to life a tribute to bluegrass music’s most influential banjo player, Earl Scruggs. It has been successfully argued that bluegrass music didn’t exist until Scruggs brought his distinctive three-fingered style of playing to Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys. The twelve tunes included on this very excellent collection signal confirmation that while Scruggs has passed, his influence and legacy remain secure.
While much is made of the speed and drive of bluegrass, as important is the ability to play within an established ensemble, to support other musicians as a tune is performed. It is this precision, this spark of creative camaraderie that is most apparent throughout this album.
Within a set featuring some of the greatest bluegrassers ever assembled playing the songs on which the music was built- including “Rueben,” “Earl’s Breakdown,” “Ground Speed,” and “Pike Country Breakdown”- there is no end to the highlights. Ron Block’s treatment of “Foggy Mountain Special” is spritely and Ron Stewart’s fiddle playing works beautifully within the arrangement. Larry Perkins brings the ‘down home’ to “Sally Goodin” and J.D. Crowe- himself a legend in bluegrass circles- shows no signs of slowing down while leading “Nashville Skyline Rag.”
Along with Tom Adams’ insightful notes and Tom Rozum’s beautiful cover art, the music contained within Foggy Mountain Special: A Bluegrass Tribute to Earl Scruggs is superior by any measure.
I rewrote my review of Laurie Lewis’s latest at the request of the Lonesome Road Review; without doubt, an incredible album. http://lonesomeroadreview.com/2012/07/08/skippin-and-flyin-by-laurie-lewis/
My review of the new Don Williams album has been posted to the Lonesome Road Review: http://lonesomeroadreview.com/2012/07/07/and-so-it-goes-by-don-williams/
Susanna Clark died as June came to a close. http://turnstyledjunkpiled.com/2012/07/01/remembering-susanna-clark/ is as fine a piece as I’ve found about her. Truth be told, I may have heard a Susanna Clark song (“Come From the Heart”) before knowing I was listening to a Guy Clar.k one. Her smile was a highlight of Heartworn Highways. Thanks for visiting Fervor Coulee. Donald
Sam Lewis Sam Lewis Self-released
Several months ago Sam Lewis’s debut album was released. Completely unheralded- at least, advance notice wasn’t perceived by me- this creation of ten original songs has become more favoured with each and every listen.
Inhabiting a sonic mode reminiscent of both Bobby Gentry and Larry Jon Wilson, Sam Lewis reminds one of the music created by contemporary artists such as Shelby Lynne, Adele, and Paul Burch. Its soulful mix of Americana country themes and influences, not to mention execution, is wonderfully attractive.
“In My Dreams” is simply a wonderful song. “If you don’t want me in your dreams, then you stay out of mine” is classic country sentiment sharpened by a rare pop-soul approach of pure rural honesty and logic. Reggie Bradley Smith’s Wurlitzer riffs provide a simultaneously playful and melancholy tone.
While Sam Lewis- who wrote and sings all the songs- is the focus of the album, ample credit is given to his assembled band. While this is notable by the inclusion of their names in large font on the cover art, more substantial is the space they are afforded within each song. It almost feels as if there are no ‘sidemen’ on the album.
Rather, this has the feel of a unified band that have spent years playing together, learning each other’s nuances. But, hired guns they are and they- Kenny Vaughn, Dave Jacques, Derek Dixon, and Smith- are fabulous, and an ideal cohesive and collaborative blending of voice and instrumentation in created.
“Southern Greek Tragedy” is beautiful- complex, painful, and ultimately redemptive: a novel in 200 seconds. Autobiographical, the straight-forward lyrics reveal the complexities of children’s lives all the more effectively because there is a lack of overt poetic pretense within their construction. “How could they know better; to them it was a normal life” is perhaps the saddest phrase contained on an album comprised entirely of emotion.
“Wisdom comes from aging, but aging makes us weak; I’ll try harder to listen, when you’re not strong enough to speak,” from “Equal Love,” runs a close second. This song, and the album’s closer “Runaway Bride” are pure magic, exploring father-son history and dynamics in ways few songwriters this side of Guy Clark and Rodney Crowell are able.
“I’m A River,” sung with Jonell Mosser, is deceptive. Over Randy Newman-esque instrumentation, the river as metaphor for a broken life may be missed the first few times through, but once realized (as in, “Take one step closer, and I’ll pull you in”) the song becomes an elegy for desperation.
Beyond his wonderfully expressive singing- softly masculine with an edge of flannel buffering the blade’s edge- Lewis comes up with great song titles: “The Don’t Drop Inn” is a bit precious, but still witty, while “Bluesday Night” and “The Cross I Wear” surpass cleverness and advance toward inspiration. “Bluesday Night” is especially affecting, and in no way do I mean that it is manipulative. Over what I would call ‘church music,’ Lewis details his interpersonal shortcomings.
All too soon, it concludes: without doubt, one of the most inspired and most competently executed albums of 2012.
I haven’t spent a lot of time in the south, but every time I listen to Sam Lewis I feel as if I have. Does that make sense? Much like Kate Campbell does, (and like Campbell, Lewis injects spiritual overtones in his songs) Lewis makes the listener one who has shared his experiences, his world.