The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt! Announce East Coast Shows!

Founded in late 2007 as means for front man Neil Fridd to yell about his romantic mishaps, The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt! has blossomed into a real juggernaut of epic dance floor revelation.

What do they sound like? It’s sorta dance-soul music, like synthed out Otis Redding covers on fast forward. Dance music with too many cooks in the kitchen, but in a good way, so not too many cooks, maybe just an above average amount of cooks. That is to say, there are sweet beats: your ass wants to shake, but there’s also like four vocals and two horn lines happening too, making for a unique, dense, dance floor throw down that’s suitable for both club rock outs and secluded headphone listening. But perhaps more than both of these, you’ll find yourself wanting to be listening to this music at a Halloween party with all your friends, because before TPDR were trying to make your head bob or your ass shake they were trying to make your heart feel something. Whether they’re singing about a new romance, old friends, or a magical thing that happens when the roads are too icy for professors to get to school, TPDR are singing about something that you’ve felt, and doing so with a humor and sincerity so often lacking in indie music. Scenes and events are set up so perfectly that on a late night, driving in your car in the middle of nowhere you feel every emotion they’re singing about deep down in your gut: you’ll be getting chills on the  subway during your morning commute. These songs will make you long for every boy or girl you almost kissed in high school, chuckle to yourself about how stupid and great your friends are and make you want to go camping, stay up late, dance on your fire escape, have a potluck dinner, jump in piles of leaves, French kiss in the back of a movie theater and finally go out and cut down a real Christmas tree this year.

And if listening to this band on CD makes you feel alive, seeing them live will set you on fire. Terror Pigeon live is sometimes four people and sometimes forty, but it doesn’t matter, cause you won’t know who’s in the band anyways. Everyone dances, everyone gets a costume, everyone sings. And don’t worry, only half the people know any of the lyrics so you won’t feel left out: the sing alongs are easy and they’ll teach them to you. The show is happening on the stage and in the audience. There are people running around with big light up robots on their backs, others wearing disco ball hats, a hairy man dressed as a giant pumpkin, streamers, aliens, football players from the movie Mac n’ Me on a TV dancing to the beat, a dude butoh dancing, it’s like Halloween and junior prom and new years and Christmas at once. There’s a lot of glitter and strobe lights and it’s entirely probable that at some point you’ll be handed a mic and told to go for it. And that’s the idea: that you go for it. Cool has been abolished: for 25 minutes you can’t fuck up. You can scream and sing and roll around on the floor and it’s okay. To quote them “No one here looks more stupid then we do so don’t worry about it!” And you can totally just stand up against a wall and watch too if you want: there aren’t rules. It’s not, “you have to go crazy,” it’s “you can.” And that freedom leads to a real liberation, an all encompassing fuck everything dance party hailed as everything from kid playtime gone wrong to the least self conscious act at CMJ to a religious awakening.

And all this razzmatazz hasn’t gone unnoticed. In addition to getting a plaque once they’ve also been written about by a bunch of important magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times, New York magazine, NME, Nylon and more. Perhaps most impressive, besides the plaque, was their winning the Diesel:U:Music World Tour competition last year. Selected from amongst thousands, Diesel flew them around the world to play in big stadiums in Japan and historic nightclubs in France. This rather surprising move, (wait, good, deserving bands can actually get giant handouts from monster corporations?!) catapulted them into the spotlight, giving them a much-deserved amount of exposure, a buzz that will that may very well explode as they release their debut album and continue to tour nonstop.

The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt! have an album coming out on Luaka Bop this spring. It’s great. It’s ten tracks of absolute power. They’re touring the US nonstop starting in February with a new backing band called The Shakes. They’re now accepting summer barbeque invitations and really want to play someone’s senior prom like how the Spice Girls used to have competitions like that.

Upcoming Shows

06/05/10 - The Ox (with Harry and the Potters (7pm early show)) - Philadelphia, PA
06/06/10 - The Knitting Factory (with Harry and the Potters (3pm early show)) - Brooklyn, NY
06/11/10 - Hillstock (with the Eskalators, Ava Luna, The Shakes, Ghost Mall and many others) - Brooklyn, NY

07/18/10 - Velocity - Watertown, NY

08/06/10 - Brooklyn Yard (with for Mucca Pazza) - Brooklyn, NY

Judy Collins' Elektra albums to be reissued on Collectors' Choice

Collectors’ Choice Music will reissue nine albums by Judy Collins, one of the great interpretive folksingers of our time, representing a good portion of her Elektra Records years from 1966-97. Collins’ clear soprano, unerring taste and uncommon sensitivity to her material has enriched songs by everybody from Bob Dylan to Jacques Brel to Stephen Sondheim, and while she began her career by interpreting the work of others, she would become an acclaimed songwriter as well. Her fearless approach to trying new arrangements, instrumentation and repertoire has made her albums among the most absorbing and fulfilling of any singer-songwriter releases.

On July 27, 2010, Collectors’ Choice will issue digitally remastered CDs of nine of Collins’ Elektra titles: Fifth Album (1965), In My Life (1966), Whales & Nightingales (1970), True Stories & Other Dreams (1973), Bread & Roses (1976), Running for My Life (1980), Times of Our Lives (1982), Home Again (1984) and Christmas at the Biltmore (1997). The albums contain newly commissioned liner notes by Ritchie Unterberger that include interviews with Collins.

According to Collectors’ Choice Senior Vice President Gordon Anderson, “Judy Collins is one of those artists we always dreamed of reissuing, but never dreamed we would get the chance. We are thrilled to release these legendary albums on Collectors’ Choice with the love and respect they deserve.”

Fifth Album: This 1965 release, which charted #69 on the Billboard album chart, cemented Collins’ status as the foremost interpreter of the best 1960s songwriters to emerge from the folk revival. In addition to songs by Gordon Lightfoot, Phil Ochs, Eric Anderson, Tom Paxton, John Phillips and Richard Fariña, the album contains three Bob Dylan compositions, two of which (“Tomorrow Is a Long Time,” “Daddy You’ve Been on My Mind”) he didn’t release on his own records in the ’60s. The Mark Abramson-produced recording featured John Sebastian on harmonica, Danny Kalb and Eric Weissberg on guitars, and Fariña on dulcimer.

• In My Life: Collins’ 1966 album In My Life saw her make a bold leap from the folk-grounded arrangements and material of her previous work into a hybrid of folk, classical and pop that was dubbed “baroque folk.” Joshua Rifkin, fresh from the Baroque Beatles Book, arranged and conducted. In addition to the first appearances of Leonard Cohen songs on any release, this album, which reached #65 on the charts, includes compositions by Bob Dylan, Donovan, the Beatles, Richard Fariña, Jacues Brel (to whom she was turned on to by Elektra founder Jac Holzman) and a then-unknown Randy Newman.

• Whales & Nightingales: For Collins’ 1970 album Whales & Nightingales, producer Abramson left the confines of the studio to record at such locations as Carnegie Hall, the Manhattan Center and St. Paul’s Chapel at Columbia University. Holzman recalls in his book Follow the Music: “We decided to pick locations that matched the emotional ambience of the songs we were recording.” The album includes unusual treatments of traditional folk songs (the haunting “Farewell to Tarwathie” includes recordings of whales), as well as songs by Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and Jacques Brel. Collins’ hit version of “Amazing Grace,” featuring her then-boyfriend Stacy Keach, is on this release.

True Stories & Other Dreams:
Having exquisitely interpreted virtually every songwriter of note from the ’60s, Collins began including a few of her own songs on her albums (beginning with 1967’s Wildflowers). She brought her own songwriting to the fore on this 1973 release, contributing over half the material. In addition to five Collins originals, the album contains the Top 40 hit “Cook With Honey,” penned by Valerie Carter. Also featured is Tom Paxton’s “The Hostage,” written in the wake of the Attica prison riots and a 7 1/12-minute song titled “Che” about revolutionary Che Guevara. The album rose to #17 on the album chart.

• Bread & Roses: For the title track of this Top 30 1976 LP, Collins’ friend Mimi Fariña set to music the poem after which she’d named her humanitarian organization Bread & Roses. The album also features an eclectic group of composers including Leonard Cohen, Elton John, Duke Ellington and Chilean singer-songwriter-activist Victor Jara, with production by Arif Mardin and engineering by Phil Ramone. Players included Hugh McCracken, guitar; David Sanborn, sax; and Tony Levin, bass.

Running for My Life: This 1980 album marked the first occasion on which Judy Collins claimed sole production credit for one of her LPs. It was also notable for her spot-on performances of two songs from Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd (she was no stranger to Sondheim’s work, having had a hit with “Send in the Clowns” in the mid-’70s). Songs also include a Jacques Brel composition (“Marieke,” which Collins had recorded previously but wanted to revisit), and one by Larry Gatlin (“I’ve Done Enough Dyin’ Today”).

• Times of Our Lives: This album, released in ’82, once again demonstrates that Collins is a singer capable of covering just about any kind of material as she deftly interprets three songs by country hit songwriter Hugh Prestwood (author of Randy Travis’ 1990 #1 hit “Hard Rock Bottom of Your Hearty”), a tune by Anna McGarrigle (“Sun Son”) and five of her own. Featuring musicians Hugh McCracken, Tony Levin and banjoist Bill Keith, Rolling Stone called this album her best since 1973’s True Stories & Other Dreams.

• Home Again: Collins’ final studio album for Elektra, released in 1984, features her own composition “Shoot First,” which benefited the National Alliance Against Violence. It also features a duet with country star T.G. Sheppard on the title track (with lyrics by Gerry Goffin) and a co-write with Elton John, “Sweetheart on Parade,” which John never recorded on his own albums. The album contains the Henry Gross composition “Everyone Works in China.” Producers were the jazz-steeped team of Dave Grusin and Larry Rosen.

Christmas at the Biltmore: Following albums on such labels as Geffen and Gold Castle, Collins returned to Elektra for the 1997 soundtrack to a holiday special on the A&E cable network. Recorded live in an intimate setting at the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina, this record proves once again that Collins’ powers of interpretation really know no time or season as she makes these familiar songs her own. Includes “Joy to the World,” “Silver Bells,” “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,” “Jingle Bells” and even a version of “The Night Before Christmas” with new words penned by Collins.

Los Lobos Announces New Album, "Tin Can Trust"

Los Lobos, the Grammy-winning East L.A. band, announces the release of their brand new studio album, Tin Can Trust, to hit streets on August 3, 2010. With Tin Can TrustLos Lobos’ first release for Shout! Factory and first collection of new original material in four years— the venerable quintet once again redefines itself and expands its scope, while never losing sight of where they come from. And, like so much of Los Lobos’ previous work, Tin Can Trust is an album that speaks to the time and place in which it was conceived; the album’s title can be traced back more than a century, but for the band, it’s apt for the rickety state in which so many of us find ourselves—and our world—today.

The 11 tracks on Tin Can Trust offer the perfect balance of Los Lobos’ parts: the band’s lineup has remained uninterrupted since 1984, when saxophonist/keyboardist Steve Berlin joined original members Louie Pérez (guitar, drums, vocals), David Hidalgo (guitar, violin, accordion, percussion, vocals), Cesar Rosas (guitar, vocals) and Conrad Lozano (bass, vocals), each of whom had been there since the beginning in 1973.

Seven songs on the album are distinguished and genius Hidalgo-Pérez collaborations, including the opening track “I’ll Burn It Down,” which features a guest vocal harmony from blues-rocker Susan Tedeschi. Three others were written in whole or in part by Rosas - including the album’s two Spanish-language numbers: the cumbia “Yo Canto” and the norteño “Mujer Ingrata” - and display Los Lobos’ signature seamless infusion of Mexican folk songs into rock music. Also included in Tin Can Trust – a cover of the Grateful Dead’s “West L.A. Fadeaway” – offering a nod to the bands’ shared history that extends back into the 1980s when the Angelenos befriended and opened shows for their northern peers.

As with every new recording Los Lobos makes, Tin Can Trust moves Los Lobos into yet another new dimension while simultaneously sounding like no one else in the world but Los Lobos. Los Lobos’ unified vision and strong work ethic are evident throughout the self-produced album, but so is something even greater: “an intuitiveness,” says Los Lobos songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Louie Pérez, “that happens only from being in a band for so long.” As Rolling Stone once wrote, “This is what happens when five guys create a magical sound, then stick together for 30 years to see how far it can take them.”

Look for Los Lobos on tour this summer in support of Tin Can Trust. Stay tuned to www.loslobos.org for up-to-minute information.

The Band of Heathens Nominated for Americana Honor/Award

The guys in the Band of Heathens are fond of saying they became a unit by accident. But one might argue that a kind of destiny was involved in the merger of singer/songwriters/multi-instrumentalists Ed Jurdi, Gordy Quist and Colin Brooks with bassist Seth Whitney and drummer John Chipman, all of whom came from various solo careers and groups. Their new album, One Foot in the Ether, offers irrefutable evidence that they were meant to be together — and have evolved into a solid entity worthy of the comparisons they receive to the Black Crowes, the Band and Little Feat.

Maverick magazine called One Foot in the Ether album “a quality album from a quality group,” adding, “If you haven’t caught up with this group, why not?” The Wall Street Journal reviewer pronounced their live show at SXSW 2009 the “best set I came across during my five nights in town.” Blurt noted: “An album that echoes their down-home resolve, One Foot in the Ether finds them putting their best foot forward.”

The Americana Honors & Awards ceremony will be held Thursday, September 9 at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium. Other nominees in the “Best Duo or Group” category include the Avett Brothers, Carolina Chocolate Drops and the Dave Rawlings Machine.

According to band member Gordy Quist, “We're really pleased to be nominated for this award by the Americana Music Association and to be named along with such amazing artists.  The AMA has supported us from the very start and it's a real honor to be embraced by the Americana community."

SUMMER U.S. TOUR DATES

Fri., May 14  WICHITA FALLS, TX  Iron Horse Pub

Sat., May 15  AMARILLO, TX  Homer’s Backyard Ball

Sun., May 16  NEW BRAUNFELS, TX  Gruene Hall

Thurs., May 20  BELTON, TX  Schoepf’s Backyard

Fri., May 21  AUSTIN, TX  Antone’s

Sat., May 22   GREENVILLE, TX  Municipal Auditorium

Fri., May 28  NEW BRAUNFELS, TX  Whitewater Amphitheatre

Sat., May 29  HOUSTON, TX  McGonigel’s Mucky Duck

Thurs., June 3  OZARK, AR  Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival

Fri., June 4  ARLINGTON, TX  Levitt Pavillion

Thurs., June 10  NEW BRAUNFELS, TX  Whitewater Amphitheatre

Fri., June 11  KERRVILLE, TX  Kerrville Folk Festival

Fri., June 18  LAKE CONROE, TX  TBA Free Music Series

Wed., June 23  FORT WORTH, TX  Ranch Radio Free TX Music Series

Thurs., June 24  LITTLE ROCK, AR  Sticky Fingerz

Fri., June 25  FORT SMITH, AR  Riverfront Blues Festival, Harry E. Kelley Riverfront Park

Sat., June 26  OKLAHOMA CITY, OK  Wormy Dog Saloon

Sun., June 27  PLANO, TX  Love and War in Texas

Thurs., July 1  AUSTIN, TX  Unplugged at the Grove

Fri., July 2  SEGUIN, TX  Freedom Fiesta

Sat., July 3  FULTON, TX  Charlie Robinson Bay Bash

Sun., July 4  NEW BRAUNFELS, TX  Whitewater Amphitheatre

Fri., July 9  FREDERICKSBURG, TX  Crossroads Saloon

Sat., July 10  EL CAMPO, TX  Greek Brothers Oyster Bar and Grill

Fri., July 23  TELLURIDE, CO  Telluride Americana Music Weekend

Thurs., July 29  DRIGGS, ID  Main Street Park

Fri., July 30  KETCHUM, ID  Whiskey Jacques

KEANE ANNOUNCE HEADLINING U.S. TOUR

Celebrated UK trio KEANE will embark on a headlining US tour this summer in support of their new album Night Train, out tomorrow on Cherrytree/Interscope Records. The tour kicks off July 20th in Oakland, CA and sees the band traveling across the country, wrapping up August 11th in Minneapolis. Tickets go on sale May 14th. Tour dates below.
Supporting the tour will be Travis frontman Fran Healy and Ingrid Michaelson. KEANE’s most recent release features eight refreshingly innovative tracks written and recorded while the band was on a 28-country arena tour in support of their album Perfect Symmetry. Night Train includes several songs that challenge the boundaries of genre via unique collaborations with Somali/Canadian rapper K’NAAN and Japanese funk singer Tigarah. The album has already been lauded for its signature brooding rock combined with synth-pop flourishes, leading Rolling Stone to say that with its “brass-bolstered soul” and “electro-flavored dance pop…Keane have proved themselves masters of…pop perkiness.”  Alternative Press drew comparisons to David Bowie and Radiohead and People gave it three out of four stars.
Since their inception in 2003, KEANE has sold 10 million copies of their three award-winning albums and seen remarkable success with their singles “Somewhere Only We Know,” “Everybody’s Changing” and “Bedshaped,” among many others.  The band’s particular brand of evocative piano rock propelled by literate, heartfelt songcraft has propelled them to worldwide adoration  and success.

TOUR DATES
July 20 - Fox Theatre - Oakland, CA
July 21 - Greek Theatre - Los Angeles, CA
July 23 - House of Blues - Las Vegas, NV
July 25 - Warehouse Live - Houston, TX
July 26 - House of Blues - Dallas, TX
July 28 - Chicago Theatre - Chicago, IL
August 3 - Bank of American Pavilion - Boston, MA
August 5 - Merriweather Post Pavilion - Baltimore, MD
August 6 - Waterfront - Brooklyn, NY
August 7 - Mann Center - Philadelphia, PA
August 10 - Riverside Theatre - Milwaukee, WI
August 11 - 1st Ave. - Minneapolis, MN

Marty Stuart Pays Tribute to Traditional Country Music with New Album

RAMMY-winner and American music icon Marty Stuart is set to release a traditional country album GHOST TRAIN (THE STUDIO B SESSIONS) on August 24, 2010. With his 14th studio album, Stuart steadily continues to lead the charge in preserving the roots, culture and history of traditional country music.

“What inspires me now, is traditional country music,” says Stuart.  “It’s the music I most cherish, the culture in which I was raised.  It’s the bedrock upon which the empire of country music is built, the empowering force that provides this genre with lasting credibility.  It’s beyond trends and it’s timeless.  With all that being said, I found traditional country music to be on the verge of extinction.  It’s too precious to let slip away. I wanted to attempt to write a new chapter.”
That new chapter is GHOST TRAIN (THE STUDIO B SESSIONS) which includes such unmitigated country staples as the male-female duet (the gorgeous, heartfelt "I Run to You," written and sung with Connie Smith), the chugging, bluesy—and spooky— fellow Mississippian Jimmie Rodgers-like train song "Ghost Train Four-Oh-Ten," steel guitar driven, hardcore heartbreak ballads such as "A World Without You," and "Drifting Apart,” and a no-flinching directness is front and center in the premiere of “Hangman,” a pointed, harrowing tale of an executioner's job and life that Stuart co-wrote with Johnny Cash just four days before the Man in Black passed away.
As the album title denotes, GHOST TRAIN  (THE STUDIO B SESSIONS) was recorded in the legendary RCA Studio B in Nashville, where Stuart participated in his first-ever recording session at the age of 13 playing mandolin in Lester Flatt’s band.
“Studio B has a profound pedigree; it’s where so much of American music’s legacy was forged, certainly country music’s,” says Stuart.   “And sonically, this is a room that welcomes music.  It seemed to me that in order to authentically stage a brand new traditional country music record we should bring it back to the scene of the crime.”
GHOST TRAIN (THE STUDIO B SESSIONS) TRACK LIST:
  1. Branded
    (written by Marty Stuart)
  2. Country Boy Rock & Roll
    (written by Don Reno)
  3. Drifting Apart
    (written by Marty Stuart)
  4. Bridge Washed Out
    (written by Warner Mack)
  5. A World Without You
    (written by Marty Stuart and Connie Smith)
  6. Hummingbyrd
    (written by Marty Stuart)
  7. Hangman
    (written by Marty Stuart and Johnny Cash)
  8. Ghost Train Four-Oh-Ten
    (written by Marty Stuart)
  9. Hard Working Man
    (written by Marty Stuart)
  10. I Run To You
    (written by Marty Stuart and Connie Smith)
  11. Crazy Arms
    (written by Ralph E. Mooney and Charles P. Seals)
  12. Porter Wagoner’s Grave
    (written by Marty Stuart)
  13. Little Heartbreaker
    (written by Marty Stuart and Ralph E. Mooney)
  14. Mississippi Railroad Blues
    (written by Marty Stuart)

Thomas Dolby prepares first new album in 20 years

Thomas Dolby, the iconic ’80s star whose smash hits “She Blinded Me With Science” and “Hyperactive” helped define the MTV generation/revolution, is preparing to break his 20-year silence with a new album later this year titled A Map of the Floating City. The album features appearances by special guest artists Mark Knopfler, Regina Spektor, Natalie MacMaster, Bruce Woolley and Imogen Heap. Leading up to the full-length, Dolby will release three digital-only EPs containing three or four songs apiece exclusively for signed-up members of his online fan community, The Flat Earth Society.

The five time Grammy™-nominated British artist quit the music business in the early ’90s and spent many years in Silicon Valley, where his tech company Beatnik Inc. created the ringtone synthesizer embedded in more than 3 billion mobile phones shipped by Nokia, Motorola, Sony Ericsson and others. Now retired from Beatnik, Dolby has returned to his native UK and is busy recording an album of brand new songs in a renewable energy-powered studio he built aboard a 1930s lifeboat in the garden of his beach house on England’s North Sea coast.

“The new songs are organic and very personal,” says Dolby. “This album is a travelogue across three imaginary continents. In Amerikana I’m reflecting with affection on the years I spent living in the USA, and my fascination with its roots music. Urbanoia is a dark place, a little unsettling . . . I’m not a city person. And in Oceanea I return to my natural home on the windswept coastline.

I marvel at the new landscape of the music business — distribution via the Internet and recording technologies I barely dreamed of when I started out,” he continues. “But this album does not sound electronic at all. I have zero desire to add to the myriad of machine-based, synth-driven grooves out there. The Net has made a music career approachable for thousands of bands — but I hear too few single-minded voices among them. What I do best is write songs, tell stories.”

To help tell his stories, Dolby has enlisted an impressive cast of guest musicians. Legendary guitarist Mark Knopfler helps drive the epic “17 Hills,” a song about a pair of hapless lovers and a jailbreak. Natalie MacMaster, the Cape Breton fiddler, adds spice to two songs. Scottish singer Eddi Reader takes a front seat on the ethereal “Oceanea.” Bruce Woolley (Camera Club) adds theremin. And Regina Spektor has a cameo as an East European waitress on “Evil Twin Brother.”

The first EP, Amerikana, will be available June 12 exclusively to signed-up members of The Flat Earth Society at www.thomasdolby.com. It includes the songs “Road to Reno,” “The Toad Lickers” and “17 Hills,” featuring Knopfler and MacMaster. Two additional EPs are to follow during 2010, culminating in a physical CD release that will add additional songs and complete the set. A multi-city live tour is likely for 2011.

Turbine and Mason Jar Records team up for live release Sounds in the Hall

Breaking through the proverbial glass ceiling of the improvisational rock scene proves no easy feat for young bands. Burgeoning musicians lumped in the dare we say it, jamband realm, need to successfully marry a deep high-quality catalog of material, whimsical stage presence, diverse writing chops, virtuoso instrumentation, and a calendar containing upwards of 200 shows per year. Correction, breaking through the glass ceiling of the improvisational rock scene is damn near impossible.

But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen, and Brooklyn’s Turbine would like to submit their CV. On their first official live release, Sounds in the Hall, as they have over the course of 8 songs checked off every single one of the preceding prerequisites. Comprised of carefully hand-picked selections of both Turbine classics and newer material, Sounds in the Hall covers all the bases, but the clear differentiating factor that sets Turbine far above the masses is their amazing penchant for writing memorable and distinctive songs across a variety of sounds and genres.

Just running through the eight song track list, Turbine touches on a bonafide hit-single in waiting “Blackout Song,” the slow summer groove akin to the Grateful Dead “Eddy From the Sea,” a thick extended funk jam on “Behind These Walls” that stretches all way to cow funk-era 1997, blazing bluegrass chops on Maritime Rag, and a handful of tunes that highlight the remarkable vocals and smoking harmonica leads.

Having played a seemingly infinite number of shows over the past couple of years, the Turbine boys took a lot of time in selecting their finest renditions of the material on Sound from the Halls, as described by guitarist and harmonica player Ryan Rightmire.

“There were so many factors in selecting the songs. Being that this is our first official live album, we wanted to include songs from our two studio albums as well as feature some unreleased ones. In the end, half the album is made up of unreleased tracks. Listening back to the performances, it was hard to ignore the energy of the big shows. Bonnaroo and the Telluride Bluegrass Festival brought out some great moments, so they are well represented. As for a specific memory, at one point during “Stand Down” I played the harmonica with a balloon, and you can hear the crowd erupt mid-song. It’s those mid-song responses that always tell us things are going well.”

It bears highlighting that Turbine’s Ryan Rightmire incorporates the harmonica like it’s never been used in a rock context. Not only does he employ some trickery like playing with a balloon, but it’s not uncommon to hear him layer on some effects and turn his harp into a synth-laden rhythm instrument. Alternatively, he possesses to chops to play it clean and go toe-to-toe with John Popper and perhaps remain the last man standing. While it’s probably not wise for the bands’ publicity to start entering them into fights, these guys are pretty scrappy so keep your guard up, Popper.

Turbine is by no means any one trick pony either, guitarist Jeremy Hilliard plays law-running lead guitar and cranks out definitive melodies throughout  his lead playing as well as helping shape Turbine’s wide reaching sound with his song-writing talents. Bassist Justin Kimmel and drummer Octavio Salman hold down the low post like Abdul-Jabar, as both are trained musicians with the ability to run the offense and take over the game at any moment.

Sometimes these things just feel meant to be; when Turbine showed up to perform their show at Bonnaroo, from which three of these tracks were taken, they found a bit of encouraging irony. “There was a giant wind turbine spinning next to the stage. As of matter of fact, it powered our entire show including all of the recording equipment. We made the announcement that this was the first turbine-powered Turbine concert. I kept expecting the songs to speed up every time a gust of wind made it spin faster.”

Taking the name from the lyrics of one the album’s highlight tracks, “Behind These Walls,” Sounds in the Hall evokes a sense of the live experience the overall feel for this tour, which included some big venues. We can only hope that with the help of a successfully release, that the halls will keep growing and the sounds will just keep getting better.

In support of the album, Turbine will host a record release party on May 22nd at the Mercury Lounge in New York City (with the Brew).

Listen to Turbine sing "Blackout Song"

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Sounds in the Hall Tracklist:

Eddy the Sea – Telluride Bluegrass Festival, CO

War of 9161 (The Pledge) – Breckenridge, CO

Invited – Bonnaroo, TN

Behind These Walls – Boulder, CO

Doing to Me – Bonnaroo, TN

Stand Down – Bonnaroo, TN

Maritime Rag – Telluride Bluegrass Festival, CO

Blackout Song – Breckenridge, CO

Denver-Based Guitarist Grant Gordy To Release Debut Album May 11

Grant Gordy, the Denver-based guitar player whose lifelong study of music, from Bill Evans to The Beatles and beyond, has informed his own writing and arranging, will release his self-titled debut album on May 11.

“[He] belongs to the new elite family of American acoustic practitioners who are pushing the ever-expanding envelope of a musical frontier … Bluegrass, newgrass, jazz, classical and even ‘dawg’ are all audible influences in Grant’s musical vision,” says David “Dawg” Grisman, whose David Grisman Quintet Gordy subbed in and would ultimately join as guitarist. “[His] guitar stylings offer a rare blend of flat-picking virtuosity, jazz exploration and classical sensibility …”

“Pterodactyl,” “Grapes” and “Lila” are just three of the compositions on the new CD, which also includes Gordy’s “Blues to Dawg” that he invited Grisman to contribute his signature mandolin playing to. Each song in the collection exemplifies Gordy’s spirit of adventure and sense of self.

Gordy describes himself: “At heart, I'm really an improviser; that's what very first drew me to playing music — the idea that you can make things up as you go along — but I'm also very interested in composition. I like the idea of a group of musicians having as much room and freedom to explore and improvise as they want, but within a context of a compelling arrangement that can be exciting for, and draws in, the listener.”

Gordy’s touring behind the release include:

Friday, June 11, KRFC Radio-Fort Collins, “Live at Lunch” show
Saturday, June 12, Brewgrass Festival, South Pearl Street, Denver
Saturday, June 12, Little Church in the Pines, 536 Gold Run Road, Salina
Wednesday, June 16, Dazzle Jazz Club, 930 Lincoln St., Denver
Thursday, June 17, Bongo Billy’s Cafe, 300 W. Sackett Ave., Salida
Wednesday, June 23, Club Passim, 47 Palmer St., Cambridge, Mass.
Thursday, June 24, Caffe Vivaldi, 32 Jones St., New York City

Kinky Friedman's First West Coast Your in Two Decades

Former Texas gubernatorial candidate, political commentator and self-proclaimed “author, columnist, musician and beautician” Kinky Friedman will perform on the West Coast this summer for the first time in nearly 20 years. Dates for the “Go West Young Kinky Tour of 2010” start on July 26th in Vancouver and continue into August (a full list of venues follows). Two members of Kinky's seminal band the Texas Jewboys, Little Jewford and Washington Ratso, will join him on the tour.  No prisoners will be taken. Only the strong shall survive.

The Kinkster, often referred to as the “Mark Twain of Texas,” will also be hawking his wares, in this case his most recent (limited edition) books, Heroes of a Texas Childhood and What Would Kinky Do?, both of which will be available for purchase and signing at the shows. As Kinky has often said, he’ll “sign anything but bad legislation.” This includes any of his dozens of top-selling books or columns, or even his Kinky Friedman Cigars, which, rumor has it, will also be available at the venues. Bring it, and he will sign it.

Kinky Friedman rose to stardom in the ’70s, with the aforementioned Texas Jewboys as his sick and twisted sidekicks. An equal opportunity offender, Kinky, with his outrageous lyrics and crazed stage persona, may have offended some, but drew people like Don Imus, Robin Williams, Bob Dylan and John Belushi into his spiritual fan club. He toured with Dylan’s Rolling Thunder Revue and appeared on the inaugural season of Saturday Night Live. His infamous appearance on Austin City Limits, the only performance ever filmed by ACL and never broadcast because of content, has finally been released on DVD, to the delight of fans everywhere.

In the mid ’80s, Kinky rescued a woman being robbed at a midtown Manhattan ATM, and, based on this experience, created the character Kinky Friedman the Detective, who solved murders in what would become a series of wildly popular mystery novels. In the years since, the real Kinky has branched out into children’s books, memoirs, historical reflections and editorials, all to great success, and all powered by his razor sharp wit.

Kinky’s commentaries have appeared in such diverse media as The New York Times, Texas Monthly and Playboy, and since adding politics to his résumé, he has been a regular on cable networks, even stopping by occasionally to spar with Bill O'Reilly.

His books are now read the world over, and his tour schedule reflects this. From Bill Clinton to Billy Bob Thornton to Nelson Mandela, everybody loves a Kinky Friedman mystery. As the ever-humble author likes to say, “I write novels for Americans to read on their aircraft.” Billy Bob is currently working with him on a new book, as is Willie Nelson.

And now, for the first time in almost a generation, folks on the West Coast will get to hear Kinky perform (live!) tunes like “Ride ’Em Jewboy,” “Sold American” and “They Ain’t Makin’ Jews Like Jesus Anymore.”  And many friends will be there too: Mojo Nixon will join Kinky in San Diego, and Van Dyke Parks has already signed up for L.A.  There’s no telling who else will pop in.  Will there be a Wavy Gravy sighting in San Francisco?

The Go West Young Kinky Tour of 2010:

Mon., July 26 VANCOUVER, BC Biltmore Cabaret
Tues., July 27  SEATTLE, WA Triple Door
Wed., July 28  PORTLAND, OR Roseland Theater
Fri., July 30   SAN FRANCISCO, CA Great American Music Hall
Sat., July 31  LOS ANGELES, CA McCabe’s (2 shows)
Sun., Aug. 1  SAN DIEGO, CA Belly Up, with Mojo Nixon
Tues., Aug. 3 BAKERSFIELD, CA Fishlips
Wed., Aug. 4  SANTA CRUZ, CA Moe’s Alley
Thurs., Aug. 5 SEBASTOPOL, CA North Bay Live at Studio E