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Connie Smith's Long Line of Heartaches Released Today!

New recordings by the country music legend Connie Smith, long acclaimed as one of the greatest singers in the history of the genre have been as rare as the voice and knowing singing she brings to them.  Long Line of Heartaches, her first full album of new material since 1998 (and only her second since 1978) is an event in the making. That’s not just for the rarity, or because her legions of fans have so long awaited this news, but because in its range of undiluted traditional country moods, themes, rhythms and sound, this new Sugar Hill release is simply, unmistakably a new Connie Smith masterpiece, offering the pleasures of the very best that saw release during her remarkable run of recordings during the 1960s and ‘70s.

“And that,” she says. “is exactly what I wanted to accomplish.  I’ve had people ask me what this album was going to be like, since it’s been a long time since they’ve heard me on record, but my musical tastes have remained the same. I wanted this to be traditional country, and it is.”

“One of the reasons that I wanted to do this recording, and it’s a personal reason, is that I have such a deep love for traditional country music. We can talk about the music slipping away, or we can do something about it.  The only way I know to do something about it is to keep singing what I’ve always loved.”

The album’s dozen new tracks, potent songs of heartache, joy, and spirit recorded at Nashville’s celebrated RCA Victor Studio B, where Connie recorded most of her chart-topping hits in her first years as a recording artist, include five new traditional country songs co-written by Connie and husband Marty Stuart, the project’s producer.  Memorable songs come from long favored Smith sources such as icons Harlan Howard, Foster & Rice, Kostas`, Johnny Russell and Smith’s + longtime collaborator Dallas FrazierFrazier’s song “A Heart Like You” becomes the 69th Frazier composition that Smith has recorded – breaking his 30 years of songwriting silence, an event within itself.
Having become an overnight country sensation in 1964 when her first single, “Once a Day”, became a number one hit, the first time a female country singer’s debut single accomplished that.  Connie Smith enjoyed a string of hits in the following years that have become country standards, including “Ain’t Had No Lovin’”, “Just One Time”, “Run Away Little Tears” “I never Once Stopped Loving You” and “The Hurtin’s All Over”. She became a star whose iconic voice has influenced other singers for decades. She has recorded a string of 53 albums notable for their quality and range.
To this legacy she now adds Long Line of Heartaches, featuring her band The Sundowners and, for the first time, her three daughters, Julie, Jeanne and Jodi who add striking family harmonies on the contemporary hymn “Take My Hand.”
“I still love to sing as much as I ever did.  I could sing at the kitchen sink and I’d be happy. I feel it is my destiny to sing.”  Country music fans everywhere should rejoice in the fact that we get to be a part of that destiny.
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CONNIE SMITH TOUR DATES

08-26     Louisville, KY - Ear-X-Tacy
08-27     Knoxville, TN - Disc Exchange
09-01     Du Quoin, IL - DuQuoin State Fair
09-07     Nashville, TN - Music City Roots
09-16     Idabel, OK - Choctaw Idabel Casino
09-17     Pocola, OK - Choctaw Pocola Casino
09-23     Pigeon Forge, TN - Country Tonite Theatre
10-01     Sandstone, MN - Midwest Country Music Theater
10-08     Renfro Valley, KY - Renfro Valley Entertainment Center - New Barn
10-12     Americana Music Convention - Showcase time tba
01-14     Weirsdale, FL - Orange Blossom Opry
02-03     Pace, FL - Farmer's Opry
02-04     Weirsdale, FL - Orange Blossom Opry
04-17     St. Cloud, MN - Paramount Theatre

Jonathan Coulton Set to Release Artificial Heart

Jonathan Coulton speaks to the outcast in all of us, in the voices of characters we know from our own sad little lives. Some of them may be monsters - mad scientists, giant squids, zombies - but his talent is in turning offbeat subjects into deliciously hooky pop songs that move us in surprisingly personal ways.

His upcoming album, Artificial Heart, produced by John Flansburgh of They Might Be Giants, is due out this Fall. It's a new direction for Coulton - he leaves behind the home recording gear for a studio filled with talented musicians and guest vocalists including Suzanne Vega, John Roderick of The Long Winters and Sara Quin of Tegan and Sara.

The album opens with “Sticking to Myself”, a blistering, high-energy song about finding success, and then tearing it all down. “Nemeses” is a duet between Coulton and The Long Winters’ John Roderick that suggests the only real way to bring meaning into your life is to find your own worst enemy. “Good Morning Tucson” is a highly singable pop song about an aging morning news anchor who one day finally loses it. The album’s title track, “Artificial Heart," has a bouncy, joyful melody that can't quite mask the feeling that drastic measures are sometimes worse than the problems they are trying to solve.

Artificial Heart is Jonathan Coulton’s first album of all new material since his infamous 2006 “Thing A Week” series, during which he created 52 musical pieces in 52 weeks. It's a strong addition to an already impressive discography that spans a decade. His song “Still Alive” is the closing soundtrack to the video game “Portal," and was awarded “Best Original Vocal Pop Song” in 2008 by the Game Audio Network Guild. This year, Coulton was asked back to write “Want You Gone," a song for Portal’s long awaited sequel.

Nashville's Coolest Cat Kenny Vaughan to release V - 9/13

Sugar Hill Records is proud to announce the September 13th release of V, the long-awaited solo debut from Nashville’s not-so-secret weapon: Kenny Vaughan. Since first arriving in Music City in the late ‘80s from his home state of Colorado, Vaughan quickly set himself apart as a different breed of guitar-slinger—technically assured and, more importantly, armed with a deeply felt reverence for a wide range of musical traditions encompassing vintage country, classic pop, hard bop, and beyond. The ten tracks that comprise V dip toes in all of these waters, forming a handy crash course in the trademark wit, flash, and unfailing musicality that has kept Kenny Vaughan so in-demand for the past quarter-century.

Starting in 2001, Vaughan has been a member of Marty Stuart’s Fabulous Superlatives, a multi-faceted outfit capable of delivering anything from rollicking bluegrass to classic honky tonk to simmering gospel soul. Aside from one track featuring Vaughan’s Nashville-based organ trio, the Fabulous Superlatives back him throughout V, which opens with the show-stopping Superlatives rave-up “Country Music Got a Hold On Me” and continues through an eclectic program that touches upon western swing (“Hot Like That”), evocative low-twanging instrumentals (“Minuit Sur La Plage,” “Mysterium”), Rockpile-inflected country-pop (“Things I Do”), and even a bit of gutbucket swamp-funk featuring the Oak Ridge Boys (“Okolona, Tennessee”), before concluding with a righteous gospel shuffle, “Don’t Leave Home Without Jesus.”

Recipient of the 2006 Instrumentalist of the Year award from the Americana Music Association, Vaughan is one of the most prominent guitarists of today’s ongoing roots music renaissance. An early pupil of fellow Coloradoan (and fellow eclectic roots alchemist) Bill Frisell, Vaughan has since performed and recorded with an array acclaimed artists, including Lucinda Williams, Kim Richey, Rodney Crowell, Tim O’Brien, Jim Lauderdale, Elizabeth Cook, Greg Garing, and too many more to list. Equally comfortable on stage or in the studio, Vaughan can be relied upon for hot, twitchy country leads, bittersweet melodic jangle, and everything in between—all dispatched with the utmost taste and subtlety.

And, as V so aptly demonstrates, Kenny Vaughan is no slouch as a frontman, either. His songs and singing are charmingly conversational, with no shortage of memorable hooks and clever verbal volleys. His cohorts in the Fabulous Superlatives (including bossman Marty Stuart on guitar and mandolin) offer honest, road-tightened support that is honest and heartfelt. Sterling confirmation of the potential implied by each sideman gig, session, and walk-on, V may have been a little too long in arriving…but, after all, Kenny’s a busy guy.

TG Sheppard and Wayne Mills Collaborate to Remake Sheppard's Hit "I Loved 'Em Everyone"

Wayne Mills and country legend, TG Sheppard head into Ocean Way Studios along with famed producer Denny Diante to remake Sheppard’s 1981 hit “I Loved ‘Em Everyone” which will be featured on Mills highly anticipated new album Long Hard Road under Diesel Records. Other musicians rounding out this all-star cast include Johnny Neel on the keyboard, formerly with the Allman Brothers, Chris Powell on drums, “Cowboy” Eddie Long, Jason "Rowdy" Cope, all with Jamey Johnson’s band, Mickey Raphael on harmonica, from Willie Nelson’s band, Gary Craig on bass and Luke Davis on guitar, both from Mill's band, and seasoned studio musicians Brent Mason and Steve Rutledge on lead and rhythm guitars.

“I came into the studio to record with Wayne because I believe in him. I hope our collaboration on this song is as good to Wayne as it was for me when I began my career,” says Sheppard when asked about remaking his hit “I Loved ‘Em Everyone.”

“Working with a country music legend like TG Sheppard is an incredible honor on both a personal and professional level,” says Mills. “I am humbled and grateful to have him on my record.  I am sure that all of our fans will enjoy the remake of ‘I Loved ‘Em Everyone,’” adds Mills.

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Wayne Mills Band

Wayne Mills will soon release his 7th studio album Long Hard Road where he worked with powerhouse producer Denny Diante under new Nashville record label, Diesel Records. Wayne, a native of Arab, AL, pushes the boundaries of contemporary country with tracks including “I Need the Country, Whiskey Bent and Jail Bound” and the title track “Long Hard Road” which chronicles the lonesome tale of a man making bad decisions and working through the consequences. With more than fifteen years of touring experience, Wayne has proved himself the consummate performer with a huge following in the Southeast while gaining influence in other markets. This singer/songwriter’s traditional country style blended with an edgy rock sound will please new and old country music fans alike with Long Hard Road. His music is the soundtrack to his life: leaving no stone unturned when it comes to lyrics and his life.

Will Hoge Set To Release NUMBER SEVEN On 9/27!

Critically acclaimed Nashville singer/songwriter Will Hoge’s seventh studio album, aptly titled NUMBER SEVEN, is set to be released on Sept. 27 on Ryko.  Its eleven songs survey the struggles of the heart that are Hoge’s songwriting stock in trade while revealing enticing range and freshness on the sonic front. Acting as his own producer for the first time, Will says this album feels truer to his personal vision than any he’s made.

“We took a lot of time in making this album,” explains Hoge.  “We started laying down tracks in my living room, then stepped away from it for about six months.  We were able to come back, re-record and scrap some other stuff and I believe we came out with a much better record because of it.  It afforded us the ability to take a long hard look at ourselves and what we were doing musically.”

The lead single, “When I Get My Wings,” is set to impact radio on Mon., Aug. 1 and highlights Hoge’s full-throated Otis Redding-style vocal with a heavenly host of Memphis-inspired horns.

NUMBER SEVEN follows up on Hoge’s 2009 release THE WRECKAGE, which was hailed as “welcome and worth the wait” by USA Today,  “triumphant” by the BBC and American Songwriter noted that the “eleven tightly crafted songs retain the artist’s self-assured, Southern swagger.” The long time road warrior is planning a rigorous touring schedule with upcoming headlining dates this fall. Details and ticket information will be announced in the coming weeks.

For updates and more information, visit www.willhoge.com.

Happy 70th Birthday, Robert Hunter!

What a long, strange trip it's been indeed... June 23 marks lyricist, singer-songwriter, and poet Robert Hunter's 70th birthday. A long-time "member" of the band, Hunter first joined up with his old friend Jerry and the gang after penning the fantastical "China Cat Sunflower." He would go on to write countless lyrics for the majority of the band's original songs including the much-beloved "Dark Star," the all-time classic "Friend of the Devil," and of course, "Truckin'."

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Robert Hunter joined the Grateful Dead in the fall of 1967, when he arrived at a rehearsal just in time to write the first verse of the band's classic "Dark Star." Though he'd never play onstage, he became not only a genuine band member but its secret Ace in the hole. Though Bob Weir's words for "The Other One" would endure, most of the band's early verbal efforts would not; it was Hunter's work that would elevate their songs from ditties to rich, complete stories set to song. Hunter had fallen into the Dead's general scene in 1961 when he'd met Garcia in Palo Alto, and he'd played in several of Garcia's early bluegrass bands. But he'd always thought of himself as a writer -- probably a novelist -- and it was only in 1967 that he fulfilled his personal destiny, and enriched the Dead's. He's gone on to write several books of poetry, and is currently at work on a novel.

Robert Hunter turned 70 years old today, June 23rd, 2011.  Happy Birthday, Robert Hunter!

The Dodos at Fox Theatre | 09.27.11

Z2 Entertainment is proud to present The Dodos with The Luyas at the Fox Theatre on Tuesday, September 27th. Tickets go on sale Friday, June 17th at 10:00 am.

The drums hit you in the chest first, spraying your speakers like swift gunshots. But then Meric Long’s finger-picked chords kick in, cascading across Logan Kroeber’s brass knuckle beats like only the best Dodos songs can.

This forward motion feeling has driven the duo since 2005, but several key changes lift their fourth LP (No Color) to another level. For one thing, the band reunited with Portland producer John Askew, the man behind the boards of the Dodos’ first two full-lengths,Beware of the Maniacs and Visiter. Having an old friend around was like adding an honorary third member; a voice of reason who can isn’t afraid of vetoing ill-fated ideas. Ideas like glossy layers of vibraphone that lost their luster halfway through.

The main focus of No Color was to bottle the frenzied folk approach that’s been there since the beginning. And it works damn well, from the dagger-drawing dynamics and brain-burrowing choruses of “Black Night” to the hairpin turns and splashy percussion of “Good.” And then there are the songs that’ll make you want to dub old episodes of 120 Minutes, including the instrumental break of “Don’t Stop” and the sneak attack solo that weaves its way around the steely rhythms of “Don’t Try and Hide It.”

“I have a love for ‘90s riffs that I haven’t gotten to showcase in this band,” says Long. “The most fun I had with this record was when I got to strap on the electric guitar and come up with Billy Corgan riffs while the tape was rolling.”

There’s less room for error than there’s ever been.  “We’re more naked this way,” explains Long. “You can hide a lot of your mistakes on an acoustic, but with an electric, every single note is much louder and more piercing. So I have to be way more on top of my playing now.”

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The Dodos

w/ The Luyas

Fox Theatre

Tuesday, September 27th

Doors:  8:30 pm

Show Time:  9:00 pm

THE BRIDGE: A Farewell Statement

Dear Family and Friends,

This next Thanksgiving will mark the 10-year anniversary of The Bridge.  It has been an amazing ride that we have shared with you all.  It is therefore with a heavy heart that we announce that this year will mark the end of The Bridge.  After ten years and thousands of miles, the harsh realities of life on the road have led us to a point where we can no longer sustain ourselves as a band.  We fought on to continue for as long as we could, because we truly believed in our music and cherished the deeply special connection that we have built with our audiences throughout the years.  But at the end of the day, the economy won, and we are forced to close up shop.

What started as a show for our friends on one Thanksgiving Eve has led us on a wild, beautiful journey beyond our expectations.  The long van rides, smoky bars, sleepless nights, wicked hangovers, cheap motels, and flat tires were all worth it for the chance to play music for you all and create those special moments that we live for.  It has been the most rewarding experience of our lives.  In true Bridge fashion, we will be giving you everything we have left for the rest of our shows.  We will be playing our final residency at 8x10, the house that built The Bridge, in the coming weeks, as well as our beloved All Good Festival, our favorite day of the year for the last 7 years.  And as if it was meant to be, we will be closing out our run as a band on our 10-year anniversary, Thanksgiving Eve, at Rams Head Live.  We plan on cherishing every last moment we have with you as The Bridge.

As chapters end and new ones begin, we will continue to pursue other musical endeavors, and hope to keep the spirit of this community alive.  We are forever grateful to you all, the people who we have gotten to know so well through the years, as well as those who have worked so hard and given so much of themselves for the band.  And lastly we want to thank each other, the members of the band both past and present, for sweating out the tough times and celebrating the high times together to try and live the dream.  We are truly brothers for life.  As sad as we feel that this experience is ending, we have no regrets. We feel we have achieved what we set out to do, which is to make people happy through our music.  We humbly thank you, from the absolute bottom of our hearts, for your love, support, and inspiration that has given us this opportunity.  It has been an honor and a privilege.

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Our remaining dates this summer are:

May 28 | Sterling Folk Festival | Sterling, NY tickets
June 1 | 8x10 Club | Baltimore, MD
June 8 | 8x10 Club | Baltimore, MD
June 15 | 8x10 Club | Baltimore, MD
June 22 | 8x10 Club | Baltimore, MD
June 4 | Crawfish Fest | Augusta, NJ
July 4 | TBA | Harrisonburg, VA
July 7 | Bottle & Cork | Dewey Beach, DE
July 10 | Ladew Gardens | Monkton, MD
July 17 | All Good Festival | Mastontown, WV
July 22 | Gathering of the Vibes | Bridgeport, CT
July 29-31 | Black Sheep Family Reunion | Tidewater, OR
August 5 | Elysian Fields Festival | Boyce, VA
August 7 | Flood City Music Festival | Johnstown, PA
August 12 | Hunt Valley Towne Center (acoustic) | Hunt Valley, MD
August 19 | Bella Terra Festival | Stephentown, NY

Sincerely,

Cris, Kenny, Dave, Mike, Patrick, and Mark

The Bridge

Disco Biscuits announce Red Rocks DVD

The Disco Biscuits have announced both the release of BISCO INFERNO 09/10, a double disc DVD featuring the first two years of Bisco Inferno at Red Rocks, in addition to the first ever Bisco Inferno Popup Store. Tickets for all 3 Bisco Inferno shows are currently available as follows:

3-day passes

Single-days

For the third year in a row, The Disco Biscuits will be kicking off the summer at Colorado’s famed Red Rocks Amphitheatre during the culmination of a 3-day, Memorial Day weekend event. The professionally shot DVD includes all sets from The Disco Biscuits’ Red Rocks performances of 2009 and 2010 Bisco Inferno, in beautiful HD.
The DVD is available immediately at the all new DiscoBiscuits.com merch store, and will be available at Boulder’s Albums on the Hill and Denver’s Twist and Shout Records beginning on Monday, May 23. The DVD will also be available for purchase at all Bisco Inferno shows during the long Memorial Day weekend, as well as at the first ever Bisco Inferno Popup Store - opening in Denver next Wednesday, May 25.
THE FIRST-EVER BISCO INFERNO STORE!
Opening next Wednesday at 5pm MT, the store is located at 109 Broadway in Denver, inside the historic First Avenue Hotel building, at the corner of 1st and Broadway. The intersection is the location of destinations like El Diablo, Sketch, BodyLab Fitness, and the Mayan Theatre.
The Bisco Inferno Popup Store store will truly be a must-see for any Biscuits fan. It will provide opportunities to purchase Biscuits and Inferno merch, opportunities for fans to interact with the band, a place to have a drink with like-minded friends, and much more. Each day will offer chances for fans in the store to win VIP tickets to the shows.
The Disco Biscuits will be on hand to officially kick things off with an Inferno DVD release party at 7pm MT on Wednesday, May 25. Food, drink, and band member meet and greets will get the long weekend off on the right foot.  The band has also announced that additional events, such as DJ sets throughout the weekend, will be released via Facebook. Facebook will also have the first look at store hours for the week, so fans are encouraged to stay tuned.
The announcement comes one week before the 3rd annual, 3-day Bisco Inferno. This year’s installment features Thursday and Friday shows at Denver’s Ogden Theater, leading into a Saturday at Red Rocks featuring two sets of The Disco Biscuits, Rusko, Big Boi, Boombox, Emancipator, and Nicos Gun.

Connie Smith's Long Long Of Heartaches | Out 8/23

New recordings by the country music legend Connie Smith, long acclaimed as one of the greatest singers in the history of the genre have been as rare as the voice and knowing singing she brings to them.  Long Line of Heartaches, set for release on August 23rd, her first full album of new material since 1996 (and only her second since 1978) is an event in the making. That’s not just for the rarity, or because her legions of fans have so long awaited this news, but because in its range of undiluted traditional country moods, themes, rhythms and sound, this new Sugar Hill release is simply, unmistakably a new Connie Smith masterpiece, offering the pleasures of the very best that saw release during her remarkable run of recordings during the 1960s and‘70s.

“And that,” she says. “is exactly what I wanted to accomplish.  I’ve had people ask me what this album was going to be like, since it’s been a long time since they’ve heard me on record, but my musical tastes have remained the same. I wanted this to be traditional country, and it is.”

“One of the reasons that I wanted to do this recording, and it’s a personal reason, is that I have such a deep love for traditional country music. We can talk about the music slipping away, or we can do something about it.  The only way I know to do something about it is to keep singing what I’ve always loved.”

The album’s dozen new tracks, potent songs of heartache, joy, and spirit recorded at Nashville’s celebrated RCA Victor Studio B, where Connie recorded most of her chart-topping hits in her first years as a recording artist, include five new traditional country songs co-written by Connie and husband Marty Stuart, the project’s producer. Memorable songs come from long favored Smith sources such as icons Harlan Howard, Foster & Rice, Kostas, Johnny Russell and Smith’s longtime collaborator Dallas Frazier.  Frazier’s song “A Heart Like You” becomes the 69th Frazier composition that Smith has recorded – breaking his 30 years of songwriting silence, an event within itself.

Having become an overnight country sensation in 1964 when her first single, “Once a Day”, became a number one hit, the first time a female country singer’s debut single accomplished that, Connie Smith enjoyed a string of hits in the following years that have become country standards, including “Ain’t Had No Lovin’”, “Just One Time”, “Run Away Little Tears” “I never Once Stopped Loving You” and “The Hurtin’s All Over”.  She became a star whose iconic voice has influenced other singers for decades. She has recorded a string of 53 albums notable for their quality and range.

To this legacy she now adds Long Line of Heartaches, featuring her band The Sundowners and, for the first time, her three daughters, Julie, Jeanne and Jodi who add striking family harmonies on the contemporary hymn “Take My Hand.”

“I still love to sing as much as I ever did.  I could sing at the kitchen sink and I’d be happy. I feel it is my destiny to sing.”  Country music fans everywhere should rejoice in the fact that we get to be a part of that destiny.