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Audio Fidelity Sets Two 24 Karat Gold CD Releases for June 21

In its ongoing program of reissuing classic rock and pop albums, Audio Fidelity will release 24 Karat Gold CD versions of Carly Simon's 1972 NO SECRETS and Bad Company's 1975 STRAIGHT SHOOTER on June 21.  The discs will be issued as numbered, limited editions that will be retired after their initial runs have sold out, and will be available from both online and brick-and-mortar retail outlets.

First issued in November of 1972, NO SECRETS was Simon's breakthrough LP and remains her best-selling recording to date, having held the No. 1 position on Billboard's album chart for five weeks and ultimately gone Platinum five times over.  Her third long-player, NO SECRETS contains Simon's signature single, the chart-topping "You're So Vain," which features Mick Jagger on backing vocals, as well as its follow-up, "The Right Thing to Do."  The album introduced eight new Simon originals, as well as a cover of James Taylor's "Night Owl," and enlisted an all-star cast of support players.  Taylor joins Simon on vocals for "Waited So Long," which also boasts contributions from Little Feat's Lowell George (slide guitar) and Bill Payne (organ), while Paul McCartney, Bonnie Bramlett and Doris Troy (of "Just One Look" fame) lend vocal assists on "Night Owl."  Richard Perry (Ray Charles, Rod Stewart, Ringo, Tiny Tim) produced NO SECRETS, and Paul Buckmaster, best known for his work with Elton John, provided string and woodwind arrangements on "When You Close Your Eyes" and the choral arrangement on "Embrace Me, You Child."

STRAIGHT SHOOTER was the sophomore album by British hard-rockers Bad Company.  Released in April of 1975, it earned the quartet of Paul Rodgers, Mick Ralphs, Simon Kirke and Boz Burrell its third and fourth hit singles:  "Good Lovin' Gone Bad" (penned by guitarist Ralphs) and "Feel Like Makin' Love" (a Ralphs co-write with vocalist/guitarist Rodgers).  The latter track was a Top 10 hit and has enjoyed a storied pop-culture legacy, having been covered by, among others, Kid Rock, ska-punkers Goldfinger and country singer Philip Claypool, and used on episodes of The Simpsons and South Park.  In addition to the singles, the album contained the FM-rock-radio staples "Deal with the Preacher" and "Shooting Star" (which Simon Kirke and Mick Ralphs have explained was inspired by the deaths of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison).  STRAIGHT SHOOTER climbed to No. 3 on both the U.S. and U.K. charts and was subsequently certified for triple-Platinum status.  Bad Company produced the album, which was engineered and mixed by Ron Nevison, whose credits include The Who's Quadrophenia and the Rolling Stones' It's Only Rock 'N Roll.

Cornmeal announces Summer plans and Chicago Live Podcast

Along with hitting the festival circuit extensively this summer (including Summer Camp, Wakarusa, Telluride Bluegrass Festival and many more), Cornmeal has announced a run of summer shows hitting the Midwest and west coast and every point in between.  Cornmeal recently took a break in their hometown of Chicago to visit the set of Chicago Live!, you can check out the podcast here.

For a full list of Cornmeal's upcoming shows & news, check out www.cornmealinthekitchen.com

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Just announced shows include:

June 23rd

Arrowhead Campground

Grassy, MO

July 1st

Nelson Ledges

Garrettsville, OH

July 16th

Nutty’s North

Sioux Falls, SD

July 17th

The Aquarium

Fargo, ND

July 22nd

Wild Buffalo House of Music

Bellingham, WA

July 24th

A Club

Spokane, WA

July 26th

Liquid Lounge

Boise, ID

July 27th

Mangy Moose

Teton Village, WY

July 28th

The State Room

Salt Lake City, UT

w/ Elephant Revival

July 29th

Hard Rock Café on the Strip

Las Vegas, NV

July 30th

Café Du Nord

San Francisco, CA

August 2nd

The Casbah

San Diego, CA

August 3rd

The Compound Grill

Phoenix, AZ

August 4th

The Mint

Los Angeles, CA

August 5th

Crystal Bay Club Casino

Crystal Bay, NV

August 10th

Club Congress

Tucson, AZ

August 11th

Flagstaff Brewing Company

Flagstaff, AZ

August 12th

Santa Fe Brewing Company

Santa Fe, NM

August 13th

State Bridge

Bond, CO

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

Hit by a Train -- the Old 97’s in Boulder

I left the Boulder Theater with both ears ringing thoroughly and my head in a satiated state of buzz, and in fact I was bone sober (as far as intoxicants are concerned).

A Benefit Jazz Concert Charlie Hunter Duo & Daniel Bennett Group

Sunday Series at Abingdon is proud to present 8-string "groove" guitarist Charlie Hunter and "Folk Jazz" Saxophonist Daniel Bennett who are teaming up for a special double bill performance to benefit not-for-profit Abingdon Theatre Company.

Guitarist Charlie Hunter has established himself as one of America's preeminent guitar players and musical innovators. Hunter’s latest recording, Gentlemen, I Neglected To Inform You You Will Not Be Getting Paid, features the guitarist alongside drummer Eric Kalb (Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, John Scofield) and a new horn section, including trombonist Curtis Fowlkes (Jazz Passengers, Lounge Lizards, Bill Frisell), trombonist Alan Ferber (Don Byron,  Kenny Wheeler) and trumpeter Eric Biondo (Antibalas, TV On The Radio). This marks Hunter's second full-length release on his independent label Spire Artist Media. Hunter follows up his latest trio album, Baboon Strength, with an ambitious effort recorded live direct to two-inch analog tape.

Critically acclaimed New York saxophonist Daniel Bennett has recently shared concert stages with national artists like Bill Frisell, Charlie Hunter, James Carter, Billy Martin (Medeski, Martin & Wood), Jerry Bergonzi, and David Fiuczynski. Bennett’s musical journey began as a graduate student at the prestigious New England Conservatory in Boston, Massachusetts.  While at NEC, Bennett studied saxophone with Jerry Bergonzi, George Garzone, and Ken Radnofsky.  Daniel Bennett graduated from the conservatory in 2004 and began performing as a freelance musician with groups like the Portland Symphony, New Hampshire Festival Orchestra, Musaner, and the Duprees. During this time, Bennett also began to compose songs that featured folk melodies played on the saxophone in a jazz quartet format.  Bennett's chord progressions also maintained a unique minimalist quality, influenced by composers like Steve Reich and Philip Glass.. The band’s landmark debut album, A Nation of Bears, was met with critical acclaim. The Daniel Bennett Group released The Legend of Bear Thompson in the spring of 2008. Metronome Magazine ranked the album in their top five picks of the month, declaring, "the trio is so in sync with each other that it's downright mystical."  In 2009, the Daniel Bennett Group released Live at the Theatre, a groundbreaking album that was recorded live during a double bill performance with the Charlie Hunter Trio. The Daniel Bennett Group has been featured on popular radio programs like Harvard University’s Jazz Spectrum (WHRB 95.3FM).  The group has also made television appearances on Bandwidth TV, The Music Closet, Style Boston, and Sal's Show. The Daniel Bennett Group can be heard at clubs and festivals throughout the United States.

Since 1993, not-for-profit Abingdon Theatre Company has developed and produced new plays by American playwrights exclusively. Under the artistic direction of Jan Buttram, the company provides a safe home in which playwrights collaborate with other theatre artists and receive audience feedback through the utilization of a four-step development process: First Readings, Staged Readings, and Workout Labs, which culminate in Studio Productions and Mainstage Productions.  

For Tickets visit their website.

Sleepy Rebels Announce New Album, "Yellow Tree"

Powerful Company will be releasing some breath-taking projects in 2011. Jeremy Adelman and Samantha Balassa formed the company. The pair are a true mom & pop musical powerhouse who found great success handling original music production and composition for advertising including national campaigns for VW, Hulu, Jaguar, and JCPenney. Their desires to make music outside the confines of the corporate creative process lead them to establish Powerful Company whose establishing project is the development and marketing of Sleepy Rebels. The New York based trio, collaboration comprised of Jeremy Adelman and siblings Bruce and Erica Driscoll, have designs to re-establish the coolness of positive sentiments and ideals. Yellow Tree is the manifesto that soundtracks their rebellion!

The pastoral images, sun drenched arrangements and sparkling melodies hit you like the first wave of the summer. “Let’s Take the Day Off” is a call to claim some time for yourself and hit the beach with that special someone. It’s instantly memorable hook will incite you to plan your next vacation day! “You Can Make the Sunrise” reminds listeners that everything is possible and that we all have the potential for greatness. The voices on the album are having a romance with the world itself.  The dreamy string arrangement on “We’ll Wake the World Up” underscores the songs narrative of waking up with someone you love just before daybreak. The record closes with “Something”, a soulful romp full of handclaps and horns. For an early listen of album track "You Can Make The Sunrise," download the MP3 HERE.

Powerful Company has quickly transformed from a 2 person team into a modern art factory attracting advertising's (and other industry's) greatest talent of freethinking writers, producers, musicians, directors, editors & designers who all share the same need to create content with artistic statements. Powerful Company has the capability to create through limitless channels including music, video, design, film & art.   In the first months of 2011, they will unveil the first few projects created by this team of talent; they include three films that serve as music videos for Sleepy Rebels. Both surreal in nature, they are intended to establish the band with aesthetic & clever visual imagery & technique.  The first video for the band's song “Magic Girl” reveals the band as eccentric street performers in a remote town in an unknown history & geography.  The second video for the song “Unbelievable” takes the unknown history & geography further and is an unexpected and surreal love story that happens in the most peculiar way.  The third video for dreamy “Looking Glass” finds a woman reflecting on love and looking towards the future as she walks the desolate cobblestone streets of a European town. The final project to be unveiled in the coming months will be a step away from typical band promotional material and will involve a collaboration with the high art world.

"You Can Make The Sunrise" MP3 Available Now!

Family Groove Company: Models & Metrics

Models & Metrics- for the Grateful Web

Having never heard the music of Family Groove Company before, I was intrigued to hear what the buzz is about.  After listening to the Chicago quartet's new album Models & Metrics, I am left still wondering what the buzz is all about.  There is very good musicianship displayed throughout this release, however as with most bands that rely on the experience of playing live their music does not seem to translate well in the studio.

This Midwestern group consisting of Jordan Wilkow on keys/vocals, Mattias Blanck on drums, Adam Lewis on guitar, and Janis Wallin on bass credit Models & Metrics as their fourth full-length album since the bands inception in 2002, and their second this year (Live in Chicago).  It may take a few more tries before this collective gets it right in the studio, but since they are relatively young there is still time for that to happen.

There is no doubt that this band knows how to get down.  Their sound weaves between the 70s soft-rock of Steely Dan, the 90s jam-rock of Phish or even God Street Wine, and the modern jazz of Medeski Martin and Wood.  It definitely has a sweet groove to it, and I can see their music showing more boldness in a live performance.

Where they seem to fall revolves mostly around the songwriting and vocals.  The lyrical sections on this release leave a bit to be desired, and Wilkow's voice sounds too much like a struggling Al Stewart or a less-than-smoky Trevor Garrard.  It does not bode well for the songs that are fairly rich in groove and flow, making me wonder if they would function much better as an instrumental group, evident in such numbers as "Tutear" and "The World is Watching (Part Two)".

Nevertheless, there is some energetic jamming throughout many of these songs which lead me to believe that Family Groove Company would be a worthy band to check out live.  They have, after all, been serious road warriors this year with appearances at the larger festivals such as Wakarusa and Summercamp.  The studio magic may not be present yet, but I am guessing the stage magic is downright funky.