sounds

Little Bird From Kasey Chambers Out Today!

Sugar Hill Records is excited to announce the release of Little Bird from one of Australia’s most accomplished singer-songwriters, Kasey Chambers.  The 14 song collection – her first solo project in four years - is the result of an outpouring of new material from Kasey written within a hectic two week period in February of 2010, and Chambers is confident in calling Little Bird the best recording of her career.

Recorded a month later in brother Nash’s Foggy Mountain Studio Little Bird features an all-star band that Kasey dubs The Millionaires; John Watson on drums, Jeff McCormack on bass, Shane Nicholson, Jim Mogine (Midnight Oil) and Kasey’s dad Bill Chambers playing all manner of guitars and stringed instruments.  Guest vocalists Missy Higgins, Camille Te Nahu, Patty Griffin and more accompany Kasey on various tracks.

“These guys are some of my favorite musicians and singers, including the backbone of my touring band, so there is a familiarity and intuitive understanding of where this music should go,” says Kasey. Nothing in the recording process sounds forced or labored; every track sounds fresh, positive, exciting. "When the songs are that fresh, there’s something magical about taking them into the studio and bringing them to life, right then and there."

The new album, which is already certified Gold in Australia, represents a diverse spread of musical styles from Kasey’s glittering career, which has reaped multiple ARIA and APRA awards, Number One hits and multi-platinum sales in Australia and around the world.

Despite the upbeat and optimistic vibe of Little Bird, Kasey notes that it also reflects on a young woman’s insecurities.  “I started remembering how I felt when I wrote “Not Pretty Enough” and comparing it to how I feel now. I was wondering how that sentiment would come out if I revisited it,” says Kasey. “I still have moments like that, of feeling insecure and unsure, but I feel differently about that now. I feel stronger and more powerful, not willing to compromise so much.  This record is like the strong, secure version of ‘Not Pretty Enough’.”

Kasey excitedly rates Little Bird as the best recording of her career. “I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited by a bunch of songs. They all came out completely differently. I was back in that same frame of mind that I had for the early albums. And it made me feel so confident. I was so absolutely in love with all these songs, I could not wait to make them come to life.”

Keller Williams Donates Godin Guitar, Special Prizes to Mimi Fishman Auction

Virginia native Keller Williams today launches an online auction at www.mimifishman.org/auctions to benefit his southern neighbors who were impacted by the recent tornados that tore through the region. Hosted by the Mimi Fishman Foundation, the public can bid on a Godin Guitar cherished by Keller, a Golf Cart Ride and VIP Ticket upgrade at the upcoming Summer Camp Festival, and a Keller Williams “Season Pass.” 100% of the money raised will go directly to tornado victims, with Keller and each winner deciding together the specific recipient organization. For additional details and to bid, visit http://www.mimifishman.org/auctions/.

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A word from Keller about the auction (April 20, 2011):

As I watched the dreamy royal wedding, I couldn’t help thinking of the nightmare that was happening in the southeast. The devastation from the tornados left me wanting to help in any way possible. So, in addition to a couple other items, I'm auctioning off my Godin Multiac fretless guitar with synthe access. Her name is "lil' sexy." Please check out “Lil' Sexy Blues" from the Dream record featuring Sanjay Mishra on guitar, Samir Chatterjee on tablas, and me playing this guitar. It has nylon strings and sounds like a warm classical that's being played with a slide except your fingers are doing the sliding as there are no frets. The fret lines are in place so it plays easily. With a fretless, you simply press the string on the fretline for the proper note to be in tune. It’s a guitar player’s guitar. It’s not a cowboy chord guitar you sit back and strum tunes around the campfire. It’s a thin body guitar, but slightly thicker than an electric. It’s super sexy. The pick up system is very elaborate with many options. Each string sits in its own cradle. The signal is split two ways and has two separate out puts. One is a regular quarter inch guitar cable that controls the acoustic sounds with volume, treble, mid, and bass control faders. The other is a 13 pin gk cable that goes to the Roland guitar synthesizer. This unit is not included. But it’s bad ass. Hours of entertainment can be had with a plethora of different sounds. My favorites were the trumpet and fiddle. I would tune the guitar to chord and slide around the low notes on the trumpet patch and would sound like a sexy trombone with no spit. The fiddle is way more realistic sounding with the fretless aspect. Although it’s a thin body, there is a small acoustic port up by the controls that allows you to play and hear her in all her sexiness with out any amplification. I’m letting her go because she was a one song a show guitar. Then when I started flying so much and had to choose who goes and who stays, I obviously chose the guitars I play the most. She is a luxury, specialty that deserves to be played.

For more from Keller and to bid in the auction, visit www.mimifishman.org.

Sugar Hill Records To Release Little Bird From Kasey Chambers

Sugar Hill Records is excited to announce the July 12th release of Little Bird from one of Australia’s most accomplished singer-songwriters, Kasey Chambers.  The 14 song collection – her first solo project in four years - is the result of an outpouring of new material from Kasey written within a hectic two week period in February of 2010, and Chambers is confident in calling Little Bird the best recording of her career.

Recorded a month later in brother Nash’s Foggy Mountain Studio Little Bird features an all-star band that Kasey dubs The Millionaires; John Watson on drums, Jeff McCormack on bass, Shane Nicholson, Jim Mogine (Midnight Oil) and Kasey’s dad Bill Chambers playing all manner of guitars and stringed instruments.  Guest vocalists Missy Higgins, Camille Te Nahu, Patty Griffin and more accompany Kasey on various tracks.

“These guys are some of my favorite musicians and singers, including the backbone of my touring band, so there is a familiarity and intuitive understanding of where this music should go,” says Kasey. Nothing in the recording process sounds forced or labored; every track sounds fresh, positive, exciting. "When the songs are that fresh, there’s something magical about taking them into the studio and bringing them to life, right then and there."

The new album, which is already certified Gold in Australia, represents a diverse spread of musical styles from Kasey’s glittering career, which has reaped multiple ARIA and APRA awards, Number One hits and multi-platinum sales in Australia and around the world.

Despite the upbeat and optimistic vibe of Little Bird, Kasey notes that it also reflects on a young woman’s insecurities.  “I started remembering how I felt when I wrote “Not Pretty Enough” and comparing it to how I feel now. I was wondering how that sentiment would come out if I revisited it,” says Kasey. “I still have moments like that, of feeling insecure and unsure, but I feel differently about that now. I feel stronger and more powerful, not willing to compromise so much.  This record is like the strong, secure version of ‘Not Pretty Enough’.”

Kasey excitedly rates Little Bird as the best recording of her career. “I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited by a bunch of songs. They all came out completely differently. I was back in that same frame of mind that I had for the early albums. And it made me feel so confident. I was so absolutely in love with all these songs, I could not wait to make them come to life.”

19th Annual Microbreweries For The Environment

KGNU and the Boulder Weekly proudly present the 19th annual Microbreweries for the Environment benefit on Friday, April 22 at The Boulder Theater.

Since 1993, the Microbreweries for the Environment benefit has raised over $120,000 for local environmental causes. The proceeds from this year's benefit will further the environmental efforts of four local non-profit organizations: CU Environmental Center, Flatirons Neighborhood Farm, The GrowHaus, and Sprout City Farms.

Nineteen Colorado microbreweries serve their best beers for only $2 each. Participating breweries include: Asher Brewing Co., Aspen Brewing Company, Avery Brewing, Boulder Beer Company, Breckenridge Brewery, Bristol Brewing Company, Crabtree Brewery, Dillon Dam Brewery, Great Divide Brewing Company, Fort Collins Brewery, Left Hand Brewing Company, New Belgium Brewing Company, New Planet Beer, Odell Brewing Company, Oskar Blues Brewery, Pumphouse Brewery, Ska Brewing Company, Twisted Pine Brewing, Upslope Brewing Company.

The evening's entertainment features music by P.K.B. followed by two sets from Head for the Hills. These local bands’ innovative sounds are sure to harmonize well with Colorado's finest brews.

P.K.B. is Pete Kartsounes on guitar, Kevin Malone on bass, Ryan Sapp on drums, and Greg Schochet on guitar and mandolin, and Bill McKay on keys. P.K.B. combines electric and funk sounds with slamgrass undercurrents. Armed with an acoustic guitar, blazing skill, powerful voice, and relentless heart, Pete inspires and entertains on a quest to make a difference in people’s lives. P.K.B. will stretch boundaries and bend genres to create tasteful blends of original melodies and lyrics, captivate audiences and foster good times.

Head for the Hills, the acclaimed Colorado Bluegrass quartet, has been receiving nation-wide recognition in response to their refreshing take on acoustic music. Rooted in the tradition of bluegrass but described perhaps more accurately as progressive acoustic/modern roots, H4TH produces a vibrant mixture of homegrown compositions, traditional harmonies, and improvisation. In the live setting, H4TH effortlessly ventures into a myriad of musical styles and sonic landscapes that appeal to a boundless array of listeners.

The benefit is a zero-waste and carbon-neutral event. We encourage people to walk, bike, or bus to the event. Doors open and beer tasting starts at 8:00pm, and music will run to 1:00am. Admission costs $20 ($22 day of show) and includes a commemorative pint glass. Tickets are available at the Boulder Theater Box Office (303-786-7030 or www.bouldertheater.com). This event traditionally sells out in advance.

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More Info / Buy Tickets

UK Sensation Israel Nash Gripka Releases Sophomore Album Today

Singer/songwriter Israel Nash Gripka releases his sophomore album entitled Barn Doors & Concrete Floors TODAY, March 29, 2011. Building on the success of his debut release, New York Town (2009), Gripka is poised to increase his fan base both stateside and abroad. In fact, strong buzz for the upcoming release in the UK, lead UNCUT Magazine to include a track from the new album on their March cover mount.

In addition to a new record, the Ozark native has been passionately supporting Food for Thought a program created by his mother. Across 29 counties in southwest Missouri, children often go home to an empty dinner plate. Many of these children rely on school meals alone for their daily nutrition. In the Pierce City school system where Gripka grew up, 71% of children qualify for free or reduced lunches. Food for Thought was established to help by providing the most at-risk children with backpacks filled with healthy, easy open foods to eat over the weekends. “It is such a great program,” says Gripka. “I’m honored to help give back to my hometown and help kids in need.” In addition to working with his mother to obtain donations, Gripka is working on a music festival this summer to raise money for the program.

Multiple tours in the US and Europe, growing recognition as a songwriter and new philanthropic endeavors, the last two years left Gripka with renewed passion. He set out to write new songs, with new sounds and new ideas from these experiences. The nostalgic and uplifting record starts off with the reflective, harmonica infused, “Fools Gold.” It then slips into the bittersweet ache of “Goodbye Ghost” and UNCUT’s March cover mount “Baltimore” before settling into the flirty “Red Dress.”

Harkening back to the days of Neil Young and Bob Dylan, Gripka’s vision was to record in a studio that was, in fact, not a studio at all. In the heart of a dusty, old barn nestled deep in the Catskill Mountains, Gripka, along with co-producer/drummer Steve Shelley (Sonic Youth) and a merry band of musicians, created the highly anticipated follow up. “I really wanted to capture sounds that no other place could create,” says Gripka. “I wanted to throw away clocks, avoid set hours, eat around a big table for dinner and sit around a warm fire at night. The idea was to create an environment where nothing else really mattered except making music.”

Gripka presents a musical experience that is both old and new. In an almost conflicting manner, Gripka uses his upbringing as the son of a southern Baptist minister to contrast the realities of his life through music. From drinking to praying, from churches to county jails and from sorrow to revival, his songs are stories and reflections that kick like classic Rock N’ Roll all while pining with the heart of Americana roots, complete with undertones of soul trampled country, and gospel choirs.

The 11 track record plays like a vinyl relic you might find in your parent’s basement. “When artists make records that are unencumbered by regimented schedules,” says Gripka. “And you turn off contact from the outside world and really reflect, you can hear that in the recording.” Listeners will hear it loud and clear on Barn Doors & Concrete Floors.

For more information about Israel Nash Gripka, to purchase the album or donate to Food for Thought visit www.israelgripka.com.

GROOMS Announce Sophomore LP On Kanine Records

On PromGrooms' sophomore album, set to be released on Kanine Records this summer, the Brooklyn avant-rock trio has come into their own.  In every way, Prom is a more mature, unique, adventurous, and most of all, accessible record than 2009's widely-praised album Rejoicer.
Travis Johnson (vocals/guitar) and Emily Ambruso (vocals/bass) met, ridiculously, on Friendster, shortly before that website became 100% irrelevant, only to meet in person at a Valentine's Day party in the Oklahoma woods a few weeks later.  They immediately started discussing experimental music and pop, and, after relocating separately to New York in 2004, starting playing experimental music and pop together in their bedrooms.  They met Jim Sykes (drums) through a friend soon after, but didn't start playing with him until 2009, when Grooms formed and released their debut album.  That album was a dark, noisy, and tangled affair, the lyrics focusing almost entirely on Travis' religion-fixated obsessive-compulsive disorder, which he was diagnosed with in adolescence.
On this gorgeously poppy album, Prom, the experiments are with beauty, texture, and melody, and the OCD-related lyrics are nestled in lulling, comforting sounds.  The album was written with touchstones like genre-crossing records from Broadcast and Wire's “154” in mind, in between Emily dragging everyone to see terrible movies in theaters and Jim finishing up his PhD in ethnomusicology.  The result is a semi-electronic, often ambient and haunting record, that sounds variously like zombies playing surf rock ("Imagining the Bodies"), glitchy, pounding IDM ("Tiger Trees"), and creepy Spector girl-group tunes ("Sharing") among dozens of others.  Emily and Travis obsessed over the melodies this time around, pushing each other to sing better at all turns, and harmonizing in ways they'd never tried before.  The band slept in sleeping bags in the studio (Uniform, in Philadelphia), staying up late and waking up early to obsess more, and to fidget with sounds they'd never played with before. Friend Jay Heiselman mixed Prom over the 2010 holidays, diving deep into post-production to help create the intensely new direction for the band.
To Grooms, this record is about freedom: to be catchy, to be unabashedly pretty, to try entirely new types of music, and even to write their first-ever breakup song.  They hope you sing along to Prom, that you get happy and sad to it in the way you do with great pop records, and that you get just a little freaked out when their dark side shows up here and there.
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Upcoming Tour Dates:
Feb 23 – Embassy Vinyl - Scranton, PA
Feb 24 – Happy Dog - Cleveland, OH
Feb 25 - Mulligan’s Pub - Grand Rapids, MI
Feb 26 – Mockbee - Cincinnati, OH
Mar 16 – Palm Door (SXSW) - Austin, TX
Mar 20 – Bro Fest - Dallas, TX
Mar 22 – Opolis - Norman, OK
Mar 23 – The Lemp - St Louis, MO
Mar 25 – Pancho’s - Chicago, IL
Mar 26 – Project Lodge - Madison, WI
Mar 27 – The Strut - Kalamazoo, MI
Mar 29 – Now That’s Class - Cleveland, OH
Mar 30 – Garfield Artworks - Pittsburgh, PA
Apr 02 – The Ox - Philadelphia, PA

Iron & Wine @ the Boulder Theater | 06.04.11

97.3 KBCO & Z2 Entertainment are proud to present Iron & Wine at the Boulder Theater on Saturday, June 4th, 2011.

Over the course of his ten-year career, Iron & Wine’s Sam Beam has become one of today’s greatest story tellers, crafting meticulous tales full of forlorn love, religious imagery and wistful dreams.  It’s been more than three years since his last studio effort, The Shepherd’s Dog, which was widely praised by fans and critics alike. While Beam’s early albums were sparse, intimate solo affairs, Shepherd’s introduced layered textures and poly-rhythmic sounds that allowed his lyrics to spring to life. It’s only natural then, that Beam took this sonic collage and built upon it for his new album, Kiss Each Other Clean. The result is a brighter, more focused record that retains the idiosyncratic elements that make Iron & Wine such an engaging band.

Beam continued to mine folk, African, rock, country, and Jamaican musical traditions, but switched the focus of his studio lens to 60s and 70s pop influences for the Kiss Each Other Clean sessions. Mingling memories of his parents’ record collection and hits heard between the static of scanning the car radio on family drives for inspiration, Iron & Wine is once again pushed into new territory. Multi-part vocal arrangements reminiscent of Buckingham / Nicks era Fleetwood Mac albums and classic Motown singles permeate “Half Moon” and “Godless Brother.” Electronic synthesizer sounds percolate through “Monkeys Uptown” and “Glad Man Singing” recalling the adventures of Elton John and Stevie Wonder. The horn sections on “Big Burned Hand” and “Lazarus” match the confidence of Beam’s vocal delivery and bring an entirely new dimension to Iron & Wine. Kiss Each Other Clean’s dynamics and surprises are the latest chapter in Beam’s studio collaborations.

Producer Brian Deck returned for the Kiss Each Other Clean sessions, continuing the creative partnership that he and Beam have developed over the course of three albums. The comfort level and respect found between Deck and Beam allows for a unique working relationship where they push each other to experiment, while still letting the songs naturally evolve in the studio. The Shepherd’s touring rhythm section Matt Lux, Ben Massarella (Califone), and Chad Taylor (Chicago Underground Duo) arrived early for live recording of basic tracks at Chicago’s Engine Studios and overdubs continued for about a year. Joe Adamik (Califone), Jim Becker (Califone), Thomas Bartlett (Doveman), Stuart Bogie (Antibalas), Rob Burger and Sarah Simpson round out the other musicians brought into the sessions to complement and fully realize the songs on Kiss Each Other Clean.

Kiss Each Other Clean’s profound artistic statement continues to move the listener’s expectation forward with regard to what one can expect from Iron & Wine. Beam’s masterful storytelling and musical experimentation relies on the conflict from combining the happy and the sad, the heavy and the light, and creating an ongoing narrative between the artist and the listener. It’s the blending of all of these elements that allows Kiss Each Other Clean the versatility to paint a true portrait of life.

Kiss Each Other Clean was recently released on January 25th, 2011 on Warner Bros. Records.

For more information, visit www.ironandwine.com

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Tickets are on sale at Boulder Theater Box Office. Call (303) 786-7030 for tickets by phone.

Tickets are also available through our website @ www.bouldertheater.com.

Tickets are On Sale Friday March 4th!

$32.50 adv / $35.00 dos

"Triple Ripple," An Experimental Play With The Bleak Contrasts Between Jazz And Rock

Progressive Jazz Fusion artist Anders Helmerson has released the title track, "Triple Ripple" from his third and groundbreaking new CD, available for purchase at iTunes.

"Triple Ripple" is no ordinary song according to Helmerson. As well as being the main track from the album, "Triple Ripple" is a combination of three songs all merged into one. "This particular track has more of a rock flavor to it than any other on the CD. It's a form of experimental play with the bleak contrasts between jazz and rock. The key was striking a balance between the two. The first part is an overture that builds up to a dramatic crescendo, while the second part transitions into the part three, which is the main theme of the song. Part three starts with a Rush inspired hard rock type of melody that gives the song a solid spine as more jazzy parts begin to evolve, and it continues to toggle between Jazz and rock."

He continued, "Triple Ripple" is a demonstration of the world's most spectacular drummer Marco Minneman and his ability to make it all sounds easy and fluent. But the fact is, what he is doing here, nobody else could do. Marco was recently touted to be the natural replacement for Mike Portnoy in Dream Theatre, but I am keeping my fingers crossed in hopes that he'll choose to stay with me."

The Anders Electric Jazz Rock sound delivers an eleven minute expansion piece with Triple Ripple, which has majestic classic synth sounds. The mix is bright and the bell tones have a serious tone. The first section features two ideas that show the flexibility of the band with harmony and time figures. The breakdown features all keys playing in triple meter with synth choral textures and flickering arpeggiated lines. The composition sets up for an extensive analog synth solo. The bass and the drums are all exceptional and keep up with an exhaustive range of breakdowns and accented hits throughout. This is serious electronic jazz rock!

"Helmerson lets his creativity take him to new heights which ultimately resulted in him creating his own genre of music which he dubs Progressive Fusion; a combination of long songs with virtuosos performed in complicated time signatures, elaborate melodies and harmonies that are built on pentatonic scales that are neither major nor minor. This musical mastermind fuses jazz and rock to create a sound that amazes listeners with the power of superior technique and great composing." MusicDish

Born in Sweden in February 1959, Anders Helmerson has had a life-long love affair with music. In the 1970's, Helmerson played in various short-lived bands and studied classical music in Denmark and Sweden, all the while becoming more and more interested in synthesizers and progressive rock. Helmerson completed his debut album, "The End of Illusion," in 1981. The album's lack of success caused him to turn his back on music for the next several years. He worked as a surgeon in Copenhagen, a GP in Norway and a ship's doctor on a cruise-ship, eventually discovering Rio de Janeiro, the catalyst for his return to music. In early 2002, Helmerson release his second album, "Fields Of Inertia" on the Brazilian label, Som Interior Productions.

BB King at the 10th edition of Gent Jazz Festival

BB King is the first name to be announced for Gent Jazz Festival’s anniversary. More names will be announced within the following months.  BB King will headline the Belgian festival during one of the special nights. On Saturday July 9 the Blues legend is coming back to Europe for a farewell tour and will perform exclusively for Belgium at Gent Jazz Festival (07-07-17.07.11). Steven De Bruyn, Tony Gyselinck & Roland will open the special night with the project with which they released the album Fortune Cookie last year. Info artists see enclosed.

Tickets are available on www.gentjazz.com and in all Fnac stores. Tickets for this Special Night cost 42 Euro, day tickets for other days of the festival will cost 32 Euro.

Member International Jazz Festival Organisation (IJFO):

Gent Jazz Festival became a member of the IJFO. The IJFO is a select worldwide club which unites 16 eminent jazz festivals like North Sea Jazz, London Jazz Festival, Montreux Jazz Festivals, Montreal Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Istanbul Jazz Festival… With its recent entry into the IJFO, ‘Jazz & Muziek npo’ receives worldwide recognition for its activities and high quality programme. The non-profit organization is the organizer of Gent Jazz Festival, Jazz Middelheim (in collaboration with public broadcasting VRT) and Jazz & Sounds (in collaboration with Arts Centre Vooruit, Music Centre De Bijloke and University College Ghent. This umbrella organization sets up synergies for common advantages and artistic opportunities. Bertrand Flamang, director of Jazz & Muziek npo: “Gent Jazz Festival recently became a member because it meets all qualitative and quantitative conditions. The membership is an important milestone for us as an organization and at the same time offers advantages for our other festivals: Jazz Middelheim and Jazz & Sounds Festival.”  For the Belgian music and festival scene this is another important step and another example of the quality of the Belgian music scene in all its diversity.

Tahiti 80 to Tour US in March

French sextet Tahiti 80 are gearing up to release their new full-length, The Past, The Present & The Possible, but first the ever-prolific group will drop the Darlin EP on January 31st (both will be released on their own label, Human Sounds).  The band is offering one of the EP’s track for free, a banging remix of “Darlin” by Detroit-based producer Jimmy Edgar, who has released music on Warp Records and K7 Records.  If you didn’t catch the premiere at About.com: Dance Music/Electronica, click HERE to stream/download the track.  You can also catch them on the road on a brief US tour this March, when the band hits Chicago, New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Tahiti 80 whip up a danceable mix of live instrumentation and electronic sounds filled with breezy melodies and intoxicating grooves.  The band’s debut album, Puzzle, was released by Minty Fresh in the U.S. in 1999, and was critically acclaimed as a refreshingly upbeat nod to late 60s West Coast pop (particularly the Beach Boys). The album also placed Tahiti 80 squarely in the center of the  “French Pop Invasion” that was hitting the U.S., along with fellow French bands Phoenix and Air (most notably).  The band has been relentlessly productive ever since, having released an astounding ten EP’s  and The Past, The Present & The Possiblemarking their sixth full-length album.

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Tahiti 80 US Tour Dates:

03/09: Chicago, IL @ The Abbey (11:30 PM)
03/10, New York, NY @  Mercury Lounge (11:00 PM)
03/13:  San Francisco, CA @ Rickshaw Stop (10:45 PM)
03/14:  Los Angeles, CA @ Troubadour (10:00 PM)