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Winning Remixes Chosen In TIËSTO’S First-Ever Remix Contest

Tiësto’s first-ever foray into developing budding new talent has been a smash success: the world’s biggest DJ and critically acclaimed producer has selected the winner of his first-ever remix contest, held this fall in conjunction with Beatport, the industry leader in electronic music downloads. The winning remix of “Knock You Out” featuring vocalist/keyboardist Emily Haines of electro-influenced indie rock band Metric was created by San Francisco-based DJ and remixer Ken Loi.

This is the first time ever that Tiësto has not only made his original music stems available to the public, but also given aspiring artists a chance for their own big break. As grand prize winner, Loi wins a $250 Beatport gift card, Tiësto merchandise, and prize packs from Ultra and [PIAS], but more importantly also receives the opportunity to have his remix released commercially by Ultra and [PIAS], scheduled for early 2010.

The contest was so successful that four additional remixes have been selected for release  along with Loi’s, including remixes from Mexican electro producer/DJ Keemerah, San Jose’s 3BrosElectro, and Queens-based Mysto & Pizzi, and a downtempo remix by composer/producer Owen Westlake of South East England. Mysto & Pizzi are perhaps best known as the production team behind the remake of “Somebody’s Watching Me” as heard in several of Geico’s “Kash” TV commercials.

“We are so happy to have used Beatport as a platform to discover such exciting new talent, and Tiësto was the perfect partner for a remix contest. We can’t wait to give these remixes some broader exposure,” commented Beatport Vice President of Marketing, Shawn Sabo.

The contest launched concurrently with the exclusive release of “Knock You Out” on Beatport earlier this fall, giving remixers one week to download the stems and start working on their contest submissions (and sending the vocal part to #1 on Beatport). For two weeks starting October 6, contestants uploaded their remixes, in many different styles and genres, to www.beatportal.com/remix, where fans and other contestants listened to all the entries. The public voted for their favorite remixes for two weeks through November 3, 2009, narrowing the contestants down to 20 finalists, from which Tiësto, Ultra and [PIAS] selected the winner.

After a run of four top-selling electronic artist albums, Tiësto’s Kaleidoscope is an artist album in the truest sense: a stunning collection of songs written and recorded in collaboration with a variety of music talents from the worlds of dance, pop and rock: Jónsi Birgisson from Sigur Rós, Kele Okereke from Bloc Party, Nelly Furtado, Calvin Harris, and Emily Haines from Metric, to name a few. Having made the DJ performance an artform, Tiësto has now made the dance album an artform. The release of Kaleidoscope earlier this fall has been supported by a worldwide tour in 2009-2010, spanning five continents on over 175 dates.

The winning remixes of “Knock You Out” will be released commercially by Ultra/[PIAS] in early 2010 and will be available at Beatport, the Ultra Store (store.ultrarecords.com), and all other digital music retailers.

Wild Beasts Announce First U.S. Tour!

After playing several shows to rave reviews in Austin at SXSW this past March and New York this past September, we are thrilled to announce Wild Beasts will be embarking on a full North American tour in early 2010! This tour is in support of Wild Beasts’ sophomore release,Two Dancers, out this past September on Domino Records.

Wild Beasts’ Tour Dates:

Wed. Feb. 10 -- Los Angeles, CA @ Troubadour

Thu. Feb. 11 -- San Francisco, CA @ Independent

Sat. Feb. 13 -- Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge

Sun. Feb. 14 -- Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey

Wed. Feb. 17 -- Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry

Thu. Feb. 18 -- Chicago, IL @ Schubas

Fri. Feb. 19 -- Chicago, IL @ Schubas

Sat. Feb. 20 -- Detroit, MI @ Pike Room

Mon. Feb. 22 -- Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern

Thu. Feb. 24 -- Boston, MA @ Great Scott

Fri. Feb. 25 -- Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie

Sat. Feb. 26 -- New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom

Sun. Feb. 27 -- Washington, DC @ Black Cat

Freedy Johnston to release first new-material album in eight years

Rain on the City is Freedy Johnston’s first album of new originals in eight years. Recorded in Nashville with producer Richard McLaurin, it’s one of the best song collections of Freedy’s career, featuring a diverse array of rockers, heartbreaking twang, even hints of blue-eyed soul and bossa nova. The album will be released on Bar None on January 12, 2009.

Producer McLaurin (Justin Townes Earle, Allison Moorer, Slaid Cleaves, Matthew Ryan) has framed Freedy’s voice with sympathetic arrangements, like the title track “Rain on the City,” whose slashing strings and keyboard washes sound like so much precipitation in an Edward Hopper cityscape. There is radio-friendly fare, such as the epic “Don’t Fall in Love With a Lonely Girl.” and the Buddy Holly-style rave-up “It’s Gonna Come Back to You.” There are also fine vocal performances accompanying the acoustic majesty of “Venus” and the country-rocker “Rio Grande,” where a full-throated Freedy confidently roars over some overdriven guitar pickin’.

Where has Freedy Johnston been wandering in the years prior to making this album? Some folks lost track of him after his 1994 hit “Bad Reputation” and his last Elektra album, 2001’s Right Between the Promises. He has moved around, living in NYC, Austin, Kansas, Madison and Nashville. “It takes a while to re-adjust one’s priorities and get back on track after working with the big budget that the majors give you,” muses our hero. “I went through issues with the IRS, had a relationship go south and a touring vehicle grind to a halt but through it all I never gave up writing and gigging whenever possible.”

Freedy Johnston was born in the small town of Kinsley, Kansas, famous for being the exact mid-point between the east and west coasts of the USA. He bought a mail-order guitar as a teenager after hearing Elvis Costello’s My Aim Is True. Later, while briefly attending college in Lawrence, Kansas, he fell in with the likes of the Embarrassment and the Mortal Micronotz. His own writing mixed literate post-punk with outlaw country and ’70s AM radio fare. His first album, The Trouble Tree on Bar None, was titled after the nickname his Mom gave a local Kinsley watering hole.

His second album, Can You Fly, was made while living in Hoboken, New Jersey, where the music community rallied ’round the singer. At the time the local scene based around the club Maxwell’s was particularly vibrant and Can You Fly featured a number of club regulars including Kevin Salem, Dave Schramm, Graham Maby, Chris Stamey and Syd Straw. With the release of the album Freedy was touted as one of America’s finest new songwriters by Rolling Stone, Spin and many others. In the Village Voice Robert Christgau hailed it as “a perfect album.” This past year Can You Fly was cited in the book 1,000 Recordings To Hear Before You Die by music critic Tom Moon.

Signed to Elektra in 1994, Johnston had a radio hit with ”Bad Reputation,” and the Butch Vig-produced This Perfect World expanded his fan base. He would release four albums on Elektra, including Blue Days Black Nights, produced by T Bone Burnett.

In this decade his fans had to make do with an album of cover songs, live releases and the early vintage recordings of The Way I Were. But all along he was taking his time, working to get a batch of songs together that were undeniable.

In Nashville he worked his way around town trying various studios, making the covers album Favorite Waste of Time, working the co-song writing game and playing on bills at the Bluebird Café and other venues. He finally settled in to record Rain on the City at House of David, a studio run by multi-instrumentalist Richard McLaurin and owned by legendary Nashville session cat David Briggs, known best as Elvis Presley’s last keyboard player. Briggs adds some Wurlitzer to the album on “The Other Side of Love.”

And the future? There are rumors of a new set of songs including a potential title track called “Neon Repairman.” “While making this album in Nashville, co-writing started making sense to me,” says Freedy. “It’s not about trying to write a big hit, it’s about working on a tight deadline and getting something that is better than the sum of the parts and getting it done.” To that end he’s been writing in Nashville with Daniel Tashian from the Silver Seas in a side project called the Charmers. There’s Mike Brown from up in New York state with whom he’s been swapping files (“he comes up with amazing things I wouldn’t ever think of,” says Freedy), and down in Austin he’s got a couple of songs under his belt with Texas legend Jon Dee Graham. He’s also looking to do more film work like he did on the Farrelly Bros. movie Kingpin. And there are always songs to be learned in Madison, Wisconsin with Duke Erikson and Butch Vig of Garbage in their joint cover band the Know-It-All Boyfriends.

In the meantime it will be Freedy working his way, wandering the USA, promoting a little Rain on the City in a city near you.

Sam Bush Honors First Loves on "Circles Around Me"

Sam Bush doesn't seem old enough to be a musical legend. And he's not. But he is. In September, the Americana Music Association with its Lifetime Achievement for Instrumentalist award will honor Bush, who is alternately known as the King of Telluride and the King of Newgrass. "It's overwhelming and humbling," says Bush of the honor. "It goes along with the title cut of my new album, Circles Around Me, which basically says, how in the hell did we get this far? In my brain I'm still 17, but I look in the mirror and I'm 57."

sam-bushCircles Around Me, Bush's seventh solo album and sixth with Sugar Hill, will be released Oct. 20. The album is an aurally inspiring mix of bluegrass favorites and complementary new songs. "I don't know why, but it felt right at this moment in my life to go back and revisit some things that I've loved all my life, which is bluegrass and, unapologetically, newgrass," says Bush. "After all these years of experimenting --and there's experimentation on this record too --I've come full circle."

Produced by three-time Grammy winner Bush, the 14-song set includes appearances by Del McCoury, Edgar Meyer, Jerry Douglas and New Grass Revival co-founder Courtney Johnson (posthumously). The album also employs the phenomenal talent of Bush's band: Scott Vestal, Stephen Mougin, Byron House and Chris Brown.

The title cut, which Bush co-wrote with Jeff Black, "is about being thankful that you're still here, that you're still alive walking around," Bush explains. "Why are we the ones still here when we've had fallen comrades and loved ones?"

"The Ballad of Stringbean and Estelle," which Bush co-wrote with Guy Clark and Verlon Thompson, is the haunting real-life story of the 1973 murder of Grand Ole Opry star David "Stringbean" Akeman and his wife.

Courtney Johnson, who passed in 1996, was reunited with Bush on the album thanks to New Grass Revival producer Garth Fundis, who found a previously unreleased recording with Bush and Johnson's fiddle and banjo recording of  "Apple Blossom" from 1976. The tape was restored and new parts were added. "It's pretty special and it means a lot to me," Bush says. "It reminds me how much I loved Courtney's playing."

Meanwhile, "Souvenir Bottles" and "Whisper My Name" are fine updates of songs Bush first recorded in his New Grass Revival days. "I guess I'm proud that I can still sing it in the key that we first cut it in," Bush says of "Whisper," which was on New Grass Revival's 1972 debut album.

McCoury, whom Bush has known since the mid-60s, guests on two Bill Monroe songs, "Roll On Buddy, Roll On" and "Midnight On The Stormy Deep." "Del always encouraged me to sing," Bush says. "So I wanted to do these songs with him. 'Roll On' is one of the few songs Del ever recorded with Bill."

Songs such as "Diamond Joe" and "You Left Me Alone" have roots in Bush's youth. The latter was on an album by the Country Gentlemen that Bush bought in the '60s. "It's a great 6/8 fast waltz tune and I am almost quoting John Duffey's mandolin playing note for note," he says. "It's a great tune and I never heard anyone else do it."

The Bush-penned "Old North Woods" is a "Bill Monroe-sounding waltz," according to Bush, that features Meyer, his wife, Cornelia Heard of the Blair String Quartet, and their 16 year old son, George, in his recording debut.

There's plenty more of course and Bush fans new and old will find plenty to love. "It's crazy to think about," Bush says of his influence on today's crop of mandolin players. "I'm proud to be part of a natural progression in music. But I hope to still be playing 30 years from now."

Del-Lords' first three albums reissued on American Beat/Collectors' Choice

In New York in the mid-‘80s, four veteran New York musicians united to form the Del-Lords: Scott Kempner from the Dictators, Eric Ambel from Joan Jett’s Blackhearts, future Cracker drummer Frank Funaro and thundering bassist Manny Caiati. Key songwriter Kempner said his vision “was to create a band that would feature four singers performing my songs — an East Coast Beach Boys if you will.” But rather than singing about girls and cars, the Del-Lords sang about things that mattered to them: the everyday grind of life and how it affected the band and those around them.

The Del-Lords recorded three albums that broke no sales records but helped start an American rock ’n’ roll rebirth — and helped sire the Americana movement as well. And now, after a long absence from the marketplace, the first three long-players — Frontier Days, Johnny Comes Marching Home and Based on a True Story — will be reissued on CD by American Beat Records through Collectors’ Choice Music, on May 26, 2009. Their last two albums, Lovers Who Wander and Howlin’ at the Halloween Moon, will come out later this year.

• Frontier Days: The band’s 1984 debut album showed the Del-Lords could rock as hard as the meanest punk bands of the day but also kept an ear toward the melody of the songs. Rolling Stone awarded the album four stars and Robert Christgau in the Village Voice graded it A–, his only complaint that production by Lou Whitney (Skeletons, Morells) wasn’t commercial enough to get radio airplay. And Trouser Press exclaimed, “The Del-Lords embrace rock’s basic components with such skill and verve that they outshine everyone else on the scene.” A promising start. Songs include “Burning in the Flame of Love,” ”Get Tough” and six others from the original LP, plus five never-before-heard bonus tracks and new liner notes from Kempner. First time on CD!

• Johnny Comes Marching Home: For their second album, the band switched to an unlikely producer with a proven track record for rock radio hits, Neil Geraldo (Pat Benatar’s guitarist/producer/husband.) The gamble paid off. Johnny retains the drive and grit of the first album yet the sound is brighter and more engaging. Also aiding the cause was two years of road miles under their belts when they went into the studio. The signature Link Wray echo and rockabilly swagger is still there, kicked into a new gear. Included are the songs “Heaven,” “Love Lies Dying,” “Saint Jake.” “No Waitress No More” and six others. In addition, five previously unreleased tracks are included. Another CD debut!

• Based on a True Story: This 1988 album marked the first time in the band’s career that they went into the studio with a full team in place, Geraldo returning to the producer’s chair, in a pedal-to-the-metal, show-me-what-you-got affair. This time the band had help from a few guest vocalists — Syd Straw, Mojo Nixon, Kim Shattuck (The Pandoras) and, yes, Pat Benatar. True to their guns, the band turned down a lucrative beer company sponsorship, preferring to remain a no-nonsense working man’s rock ’n’ roll band at its peak. This album was released on CD, but due to a label shakeup not many copies found their way into stores. The album contains their biggest hit, “Judas Kiss,” as well as “The Cool and the Crazy,” “Crawl in Bed,” “Cheyenne” and six others, plus, you guessed it, five previously unreleased bonus tracks. Kempner again wrote liner notes for the reissue.

Looking back a quarter of a century to the band formation, Kempner explains: “The Del-Lords were conceived as Holy Sacrament: two guitars, bass & drums, four lead singers, just the way we figured El Hombre Grande wanted it. F--- not with what is essentially perfect! However, the reverence ended there and we were more in tune with John Lennon's assessment: ‘the blues ain't a painting to look at and admire, it's a chair to sit in and use.’ They called it ‘roots-rock’ or ‘cowpunk,’ we called it rock 'n' roll. The good kind. It was firmly rooted in the great artists who came before but, we were burdened in soul and of mind with a very bad attitude. We stomped all over the blues, country, rock 'n' roll, of all kinds and twisted it into something uniquely of us. I mean, I'm a Jew from the South F---n' Bronx! Who am I kidding?

“Now, 25 years after the fact the landscape is grim once again,” he adds. “Just like 1984. Rock 'n' roll where art thou? It seems to me it's the same folks playin’ it now that was playin’ it then. Blessed are the faithful. These records we made back then sound awful good to me right now. A mighty noise. They sound necessary again. Rock'n'roll gives what it gets. Remember that! It's not a painting, it's a f---in' chair!”

Umphrey’s McGee Among First to Embrace New HDMP3 Format

ryanUmphrey's McGee are among the first bands to make their content available in the new HDMP3 format.  The new format allows for the creation and playback of a new type of audio file using lossless compression. MP3HD files are approximately four times the size of corresponding MP3 files, but remain compatible with existing MP3 players.  Umphrey's McGee will make a sizable portion of their recent two-night run at the historic Murat Egyptian Room on March 13, 2009 available in the new format beginning April 1st at http://all4mp3.com/Listen_mp3HD.aspx.  Additional recordings will be made available in the coming weeks.

"As one of the few artists who record and make available every show that is played, sound quality is paramount to the entire band.  The HDMP3 format is a welcome addition to our existing arsenal of lossless and lossy formats we make available for fans, explains Umphrey's McGee's audio engineer & producer Kevin Browning." Offering a much richer sound spectrum combined with the convenience and familiarity of the MP3 format, we expect HDMP3 to be a hit with the band and fans alike."

Umphrey's McGee has recently made headlines with a groundbreaking digital campaign surrounding their latest studio album, Mantis.  Mantis debuted at #62 on the Billboard 200 Chart, and #6 on the Indie Chart, with more than twice the sales the band's previous effort achieved week of release.  In a declining record industry, the band's ingenious and innovative digital strategy has bucked the downward trend.  Prior to this initiative, the standard approach towards offering bonus content was limited to delivery of exclusive materials as a one-shot incentive to the buyer.  Umphrey's McGee, in super-serving their fan base, have built a modern nine-tier solution supported by grassroots and viral word-of-mouth, that marketing executives across the planet will envy.

This innovative initiative relies on fan support to see its goals realized.  A variety of content is made available to those who pre-ordered the album in stages, based on purchased units unlocking the vault at varying thresholds.   With each tier reach, more content goes out to the core crusaders.  Guitarist and vocalist Brendan Bayliss explains, "Our fans have always been there for us, and with each year that has passed, the legion has exponentially grown.  Collectively, we knew that this is a program that they'd love.  Without a community, as we enjoy, this would probably never be executed as a realized vision.  In our case, it worked."  Band manager Vincent Iwinski adds, "That we were able to super-serve our fanbase with content they want, while making them part of the process, resulted in crowd-sourcing a passionate sales team like no other.  With sales more than doubling our previous album in such a tough recorded music market is a testament to the creativity of the band, the support of the fans and the power of the new medium that enables artists like Umphrey's McGee to push the envelope from both music and marketing perspectives."  During the release week, Mantis reached #25 on the iTunes Album chart.

In addition to a one-of-a kind pre-order campaign where fans can participate in "unlocking" exclusive bonus material, Mantis incorporates PUSH(TM) technology by Digital Insert to deliver new content throughout 2009.  PUSH requires no software installation or serial number; by simply putting the Mantis CD in your CD-ROM drive, the disc acts as a "key" to an Umphreys.com micro-site where fans get access to exclusive 2009 content as it becomes available.

Umphrey's McGee has also broken new ground by being among the first bands to offer their fans a video subscription service.  Available exclusively at iClips.com, Umphrey's has made an entire week's worth of concerts available in realtime video streaming to their fans for the low cost of only $5 per show, or the total package for only $20.  Fans have the option of streaming the shows live as they happen, as well as further streaming on demand for two weeks following the concerts.

The Mantis campaign, the band's video subscription, and their use of the HDMP3 format are all innovative music experiences offered by Umphrey's McGee, who have proven adaptive and inventive both in music and business over the last 10 years. Through online community building, creative web-based promotions, and open taping policies allowing live music sharing among fans, Umphrey's McGee has harnessed the internet's momentum to spread their music far and wide. The band's download store UMLive.net is an archive of their ever-diverse live performances, hosting downloads of over 300 shows with 750,000 tracks sold since 2004. Umphreys.com hosts the iTunes friendly UM Podcast which releases two 75-minute episodes of live material each month to its 20,000 subscribers. Since 2001, Umphrey's has released soundboard recordings of each night's concert immediately after the show in both physical and digital formats - and each show typically sells upwards of 300 copies per night. The band's unique approach to online and digital distribution, paired with word of mouth buzz, has helped Umphrey's McGee sell out shows nationwide while keeping their fans a top priority.

jakeThe band has returned to the road for a run through the northeast, midwest and several forthcoming summer festivals.  Confirmed dates are as follows:   

April 02 The Grand Opera House Wilmington, DE
April 03 Penn's Peak Jim Thorpe, PA
April 04 Ram's Head Live! Baltimore, MD
April 05 Toad's Place New Haven, CT
April 07 Lupo's Heartbreak Hotel Providence, RI
April 08 Calvin Theatre Northampton, MA
April 09 House of Blues Boston, MA
April 10 Nokia Theatre Times Square New York, NY
April 11 Nokia Theatre Times Square New York, NY
April 16 Taft Theatre Cincinnati, OH
April 17 Egyptian Theatre Dekalb, IL
April 18 Morris Performing Arts Center South Bend, IN
April 29 Bama Theatre Tuscaloosa, AL
April 30 House of Blues New Orleans, LA
May 01 House of Blues New Orleans, LA
May 02 The Lyric Oxford MS
May 22 Summer Camp Chillicothe, IL
May 29 Mountain Jam Festival ~ Hunter Mountain Hunter, NY
May 30 Newport Music Hall Columbus, OH
June 05 Wanee Festival Live Oak, FL
July 02 High Sierra Music Festival Quincy, CA
July 11 All Good Music Festival ~ Marvin's Mountaintop Masontown, WV
July 18-19 Alpine Valley East Troy, WI supporting The Dave Matthews Band
July 25 10,000 Lakes Festival Detroit Lakes, MN

Ukulele Master Jake Shimabukuro Releases His First LIVE CD

photos by Phil & Janie- for the Grateful Web

Perhaps you were in the audience at one of Jake Shimabukuro's shows last year when he "entered the zone, created unforgettable music, and wowed the crowd. The odds are that Jake's tech crew recorded that concert, and the moment is captured on Live, his upcoming HITCHHIKE RECORDS release (distributed by Thirty Tigers/RED, April 14 release). This is Jake's first full-length CD since 2006's best-selling Gently Weeps. After taping dozens of U.S. and overseas performances Jake chose these tracks as representing the best of the best of his live playing.

I've always wanted to release a live CD because there's something magical about capturing the energy of the audience during a performance, says Jake. "Every cheer and chuckle writes itself into each tune and becomes a part of the arrangement. Every track reveals a different side of the ukulele. Soft and sensitive at times, other times cheery and playful, occasionally dramatic, and, once in a while, hard and aggressive.

I enjoyed putting this album together because it preserved the feeling of each concert. Every venue had a refreshingly intimate vibe that made the creation of music pleasurable. My favorite moments are the spontaneous ones of laughter and joy between songs. Music should bring happiness. The sound of the ukulele always makes me smile. I think the world would be a greater place if everyone played the ukulele.

The 17-song CD includes 12 Shimabukuro originals (Nine versions of his best-known compositions, plus three brand-new tunes) and five covers (including a jaw-dropping version of J.S. Bach's "Two-Part Invention No. 4 in D Minor"and a memorable interpretation of Thriller," the Rod Temperton song made famous by Michael Jackson). Of course there's a live version of George Harrison's While My Guitar Gently Weeps"which might be Jake's best-recorded version yet!

Live documents the fascinating journey and musical growth of one of the most original musical talents on the planet, Jake Shimabukuro.

Listen to the first single from Umphrey's McGee's MANTIS

photos by Phil Emma- for the Grateful Web

Umphrey's McGee's single "Made to Measure," from their forthcoming studio album Mantis (street date: January 20, 2009), was just released.

Listen now here.

Chicago's Umphrey's McGee enters its second decade together with their hardest, darkest, and most artistically cohesive album to date. The new album hits streets on Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009, when Mantis casts another Windy City family into the limelight. Over 2 years in the making, Mantis pushes the envelope in composition, arrangement and group interplay.  In an Umphrey's McGee first, the album offers 100% new material  - a drastic change of pace for a band whose typical modus operandi is to work out the material live on-stage before recording studio versions.

In addition to a one-of-a kind pre-order campaign where fans can participate in "unlocking exclusive bonus material, Mantis incorporates PUSH(TM) technology by Digital Insert to deliver new content throughout 2009.  PUSH requires no software installation or serial number; by simply putting the Mantis CD in your CD-ROM drive, the disc will act as a "key" to an Umphreys.com micro-site where fans get access to exclusive 2009 content as it becomes available.

Umphrey's McGee is preparing for their always-epic New Year's eve run in Chicago.  This year at the Auditorium Theatre, the band will be joined on stage by musical icons Buddy Guy, Stanley Jordan, Joshua Redman, Jeff Coffin, and Koko Taylor.  Previous guests who've shared the stage with Umphrey's include Tortoise, Taj Mahal, The Wailers, Los Lobos and many more.

Elliott Murphy: On Tour In the USA For the First Time in Eight Years

Photo by Sue Rynski- for the Grateful Web

ELLIOTT MURPHY - the legendary Paris-based American rock troubadour will embark on his first U.S. tour in eight years.  The tour kicks off December 2008 in the Northeast U.S. (New York City, Philadelphia, Boston, DC, Albany, Larchmont, Amagansett), and continues on to the West Coast, where he hasn't played in 12 years) in January 2009 (San Francisco, Felton, Tehachapi, Los Angeles, San Diego, Long Beach). Elliott will be accompanied by his longtime guitarist extraordinaire Olivier Durand.  More shows will follow in Spring 2009.

Elliott Murphy has collaborated with Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Phil Collins and other great rock 'n roll names.  His ground-breaking, debut album AQUASHOW was recently called an "Album Classic" in a full page review in the UK's prestigious Uncut magazine.

Opening all shows will be multi-cultural singer-songwriter Jann Klose, who was born in Germany and raised in Kenya, South Africa, Hamburg and first came to the US as an exchange student in Cleveland.  His album REVERIE is now being played on over 80 stations in North America.  Jann tours aggressively in the U.S. and Europe.  Recent shows included collaborations with Annie Haslam and John Tout of Renaissance, sharing the stage with Marty Stuart, Rosanne Cash and Roger McGuinn at Martin Guitars' 175th Anniversary Concert, and a special show at the German Embassy in Washington, DC. Jann moved to the Bronx in 2000, the same year Elliott played his last show at the Bottom Line in New York City.

Elliott Murphy will be promoting his latest release NOTES FROM THE UNDERGROUND - his 30th album in a non-stop 35-year career. Album Music Guide (AMG) recently awarded NOTES a rave 4-Star review making Elliott one of the rare artists who have received over fifteen 4 -star reviews on this prestigious review site.

Elliott was born to a show business family in New York and began his career by winning the 1966 New York State Battle of the Bands, and then followed a troubadour's odyssey across Europe included a bit part in Federico Fellini's film "Roma." His career was launched by the critical success of his debut album AQUASHOW followed by LOST GENERATION (Produced by Doors producer Paul Rothschild), NIGHT LIGHTS (featuring Billy Joel), JUST A STORY FROM AMERICA (featuring Phil Collins and Mick Taylor) and an extraordinary duet with Bruce Springsteen on his 1996 masterpiece SELLING THE GOLD.  (Bruce often invites Elliott on stage with him during his European tours.)  In October 2008, he was honored with a monumental exhibition in Paris' Town Hall entitled "Elliott Murphy - Last of the Rock Stars – Retrospective" featuring hundreds of posters, photos, videos, album covers and memorabilia.

Elliott Murphy is also a published author of short story collections  (most recently Café Notes) and two novels (Cold And Electric and the neo-western Poetic Justice) as well as penning the liner notes for the Velvet Underground album 1969 Live. Elliott has lived in Paris for 18 years and has performed at such prestigious venues as the Montreux Jazz Festival as well as opening for Bob Dylan at the Pistoia Blues Festival.

Dec 10 2008 Johnny D's   Somerville, Massachusetts
Dec 12 2008 The Stephen Talkhouse   Amagansett, New York
Dec 13 2008 Valentine's   Albany, New York
Dec 15 2008   The Living Room   New York, New York
Dec 16, 2008   Velvet Lounge    Washington, DC
Dec 17 2008   World Cafe Live   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Dec 18 2008   Watercolor Cafe   Larchmont, New York
Jan 7, 2009     Café Du Nord    San Francisco, California
Jan 8, 2009     Don Quixote's   Felton, California
Jan 10, 2009   Hotel Café, Los Angeles, California
Jan 11, 2009     Mama's Hilly Beans, Tehachapi, California
Jan 13 2009    Acoustic Music San Diego  San Diego, California
Jan 14 2009   The Blue Cafe   Long Beach, California
Jan 16 2009     NAMM 2009 Anaheim, California

Elliott also tours in Europe and there are a number of dates posted on his  myspace.com/elliottmurphy.

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Let us also give a plug for the Humane Society as Elliott also wrote about the importance of responsible ownership and adopting from animal shelters at the Humane Society's Shelter Rock web site. In December the HSUS will be auctioning off an autographed Elliott Murphy fashion tote bag.

And you'll see reflections from all kinds of an array of music folks including another person who collaborated recently with Jann—Annie HaslamHeavy D., Carole King, and MUTTS cartoonist Patrick McDonnell are in there, and so is Patti Page, who has updated her "How Much Is That Doggie in The Window" to "(Look at that) Doggie in the Shelter."

Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs' first U.S. Album & Dates

Holly Golightly & the Brookeoffs- for the Grateful Web

Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs, heralded by NME as "a glorious example of what rock 'n' roll should be," has signed with Transdreamer Records (distributed by MRI Distribution/RED) and are preparing their first American release as a band. Titled Dirt Don't Hurt, the CD is slated for a street date of October 14, 2008. "Band," however, is a figurative term for Holly and company— Holly Golightly and Lawyer Dave (a.k.a. the Brokeoffs) sing and play guitar, as well as drums, banjo, standup bass and an array of other instruments. It's just the two of them.

The new, self-produced album was recorded in five days during the middle of a 50-date tour in the town of Gijon on Spain's northern coast, at an analog studio called Circo Perrotti, which is outfitted with vintage recording gear and dedicated to discerning production values.
  
Their music is a lo-fi stew of blues, country and rockabilly, at once avant-garde and old-timey. As Playboy.com says, "Golightly's songs are so fresh and timeless they could have been recorded yesterday or 40 years ago." Entertainment Weekly called her "a truly appealing tunesmith." And BarnesAndNoble.com deemed her "ready for her above-ground closeup."

Holly Golightly kicked off her musical career in Thee Headcoatees, the legendary all-girl garage band, closely affiliated with U.K. cult legend Billy Childish. She spent eight years as a Headcoatee, and during those years released her first solo record, The Good Things, in 1995. She has appeared on multiple collaborative albums, contributing the title track for the Jim Jarmusch movie Broken Flowers with The Greenhornes, and celebrating "One Chord, One Sound, One Song" with Billy Childish on the album In Blood. Holly also guested on The White Stripes' "(Well It's True That) We Love One Another" from their platinum selling Elephant.  

This album is the 19th for Holly Golightly, whose discography is a cacophony of albums (studio and live), EPs, singles and 10-inch LPs and iTunes-only releases. Although many of the recordings are best known to Americans as imports on the U.K.-based Damaged Goods label, several have been released on labels like Kill Rock Stars, Sympathy for the Record Industry, Box Theory, Super Electro and Flapping Jet.

Lawyer Dave had been playing stand-up bass in Holly's touring line up for many years, and Dirt Don't Hurt is testament the countless miles they've covered together. The Brokeoffs have an independently released album Rest Stop, which was recorded entirely at rest stops that were closed for construction.

Holly Golightly and the Brokeoffs will embark upon a 50-city U.S. tour starting in New York on October 16 and going until Thanksgiving. The tentative tour dates are as follows and are subject to change drastically:
 
Thu. Oct. 16    NEW YORK, NY              Mercury Lounge
Fri. Oct. 17    WASHINGTON, DC            DC9
Sat. Oct. 18    PHILADELPHIA, PA          Khyber
Mon. Oct. 20    BOSTON, MA                Middle East
Tue. Oct. 21    MONTREAL, QU              Café Campus
Wed. Oct. 22    TORONTO, ONT              Horseshoe Tavern
Thu. Oct. 23    BUFFALO/ROCHESTER, NY     Mohawk
Fri. Oct. 24    PITTSBURGH, PA            Garfield Artworks
Sat. Oct. 25    CLEVELAND, OH             Beachland Tavern
Mon. Oct. 27    NEWPORT, KY               Southgate House
Tue. Oct. 28    TOLEDO, OH                Frankie's
Wed. Oct. 29    CHICAGO, IL               Subt
Thu. Oct. 30    MINNEAPOLIS, MN           7th St. Entry
Fri. Oct. 31    MADISON, WI               Café Montmartre
Sat. Nov. 1     MILWAUKEE, WI             Mad Planet
Sun. Nov. 2     KANSAS CITY, MO           Record Bar
Mon. Nov. 3     LAWRENCE, KS              Jackpot Saloon
Tue. Nov. 4     DENVER, CO                Larimer Lounge
Thu. Nov. 6     SALT LAKE CITY, UT        Kilby Court
Fri. Nov. 7     BOISE
, ID                 Neurolux
Sat. Nov. 8     SEATTLE, WA               Triple Door
Mon. Nov. 10    VANCOUVER, BC             Media Club
Tue. Nov. 11    PORTLAND, OR              Doug Fir
Thu. Nov. 13    SAN FRANCISCO, CA         Bottom of the Hill
Fri. Nov. 14    LOS ANGELES, CA           Echo
Sat. Nov. 15    SAN DIEGO, CA             The Casbah
Tue. Nov. 18    TUCSON, AZ                Plush
Thu. Nov. 20    AUSTIN, TX                Emo's
Fri. Nov. 21    DALLAS, TX                The Loft
Sat. Nov. 22    HOUSTON, TX               Rudyards
Mon. Nov. 24    MEMPHIS, TN               Hi-Tone
Tue. Nov. 25    NASHVILLE, TN             The End
Wed. Nov. 26    ATLANTA, GA               EARL