virginia

Great American Taxi's "Blair Mountain" is free mp3; supports WV mining ecology

For Great American Taxi and frontman Vince Herman, who grew up in West Virginia, fighting for social justice in Appalachia and calling for an end to mountaintop removal seems the natural thing to do.  According to a recent studypublished last week in the journal Environmental Research, a "significantly higher" rate of birth defects exists in babies born near mountaintop removal mining sites than those in non-mining areas. Mountaintop removal mining is a particularly environmentally destructive type of resource extraction that involves using explosives to blow the tops off of mountains to expose coal underneath the soil and rock.

So it’s no surprise that “Blair Mountain,” the aptly named title of the first single from the band’s forthcoming yet-to-be-titled new album (set for release this fall), premiered exclusively on the Sierra Club’s special public service call-to-action video, Battle for Blair Mountain. The song was recorded in May with Todd Snider producing. Master folk musician Tim O'Brien, a West Virginia native recently inducted into the WV Music Hall of Fame, plays banjo and fiddle on the track.

GAT is encouraging fans to download a free MP3 of “Blair Mountain” from the band’s website and get involved in restoring Blair Mountain to the National Register in support of the Sierra Club’s recently filed legal petition with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection to make Blair Mountain off limits to mining.

“I wrote the song “Blair Mountain” to try and do my part to let people know about what we as working people stand to lose if Blair Mountain is destroyed,” said Herman. “As the grandson of a proud union miner, and former resident of the mountain state, this struggle connects deeply. The coal wars are not over in this country as whole communities are destroyed, water tables ruined and mountains bombed daily in what has become a national sacrifice zone to the interests of the coal companies. I hope that his song may help get us closer to ending the destruction of the most diverse forests in America.”

Great American Taxi continues its summer tour; June highlights included concerts with Barry Sless (Phil and Friends, David Nelson Band, Moonalice) at the Nelson Family Vineyards on 6/19, at the Hopmonk in Sebastopol on 6/22, and special guests New Monsoon in Santa Cruz on 6/23. More surprise guests will be announced for the Eldo in Crested Butte on 7/9 and GAT played with Todd Snider on 6/25 and 6/26.



Great American Taxi includes Vince Herman, Chad Staehly, guitarist Jim Lewin, bassist Brian Adams and drummer Chris Sheldon.

EOTO 2010 Fall Tour

Consummate road dogs EOTO just announced a jam-packed fall tour with headlining dates spanning both coasts before topping off a wildly successful 2010. The 30+ day tour will kick off on September 21st featuring 11 dates with DJ's MiMOSA and MartyParty on the west coast and then beginning in October the duo will fly solo in the Mid-West before heading east for the remainder of the winter.

Throbbing bass and thudding beats are the signatures of this project from drummers Michael Travis and Jason Hann. Born out of their shared love of electronic dance music, EOTO's M.O. is to take the free-wheeling party vibe of a DJ set to the next level by using organic instruments, innovative performance technology, and uncharted musical exploration. Live drums, guitars, and keys, and vocals are mixed, remixed, and sampled on the fly using cutting-edge programs. This is all done without a script, and without a net.

Hann plays a hyper EQ'd drumkit, chock full of multi-touch screens and MIDI controllers, and throws a number of effects on his otherworldly vocal styles. Travis takes on subsonic frequencies, generating the band's crushing low end with analog, digital, and software synthesizers, occasionally picking up guitar or a bass guitar and showing off his proficiency with instruments of all shapes and sizes.

Hann, has been playing percussion professionally since the age of 12. Years of collaborating, touring, and recording with the likes of Youssou N'Dour, Isaac Hayes, Dr. Dre, Loreena McKinnett, SCI, and a slew of other established artists running the gamut from Latin jazz to R 'n' B and soul allows him to move fluidly between styles. Adding to this is his depth in African and Latin drumming traditions, allowing the futuristic EOTO sound to keep itself rooted in the past.

For the last 16 years, Travis has been the drumming octopus in SCI. He morphs roles to melodic multi-instrumentalist in EOTO, providing the raw basslines and harmonic tapestry that fill out the soundscape of the duo. Both Hann and Travis have the chops and stamina for physically demanding, EOTO improvised sets, which have been known to go upwards of 4 straight hours.

"When we're playing live for 3 hours a night, it's like playing tribal drums in a ceremony," Hann explains. "I'm looking at one person at a time out there, and thinking "what can I do to make you dance?"

Hann and Travis play almost 200 shows a year, together, EOTO has played more than seven hundred unique showcases in 48 different states in the five years since the project's inception. Each set is recorded and released so fans can capture their unique EOTO dance throwdown, reliving the experience again and again.

TOUR DATES INCLUDE:


10/8/2010 Bourbon Theatre Lincoln Nebraska
10/15/2010 Granada Theater Dallas Texas
10/16/2010 La Zona Rosa Austin Texas
10/22/2010 The Last Concert Cafe Houston Texas
10/23/2010 Tipitina's Uptown New Orleans Louisiana
10/27/2010 Blind Pig Ann Arbor Michigan
10/29/2010 Norva Norfolk Virginia
10/31/2010 Granada Lawerence Kansas
11/2/2010 2720 Saint Louis Missouri
11/3/2010 The Canopy Club Urbana Illinois
11/4/2010 Majestic Live Madison Wisconsin
11/5/2010 EPIC Minneapolis Minnesota
11/6/2010 Riviera Theatre Chicago Illinois
11/7/2010 The Intersection Grand Rapids Michigan
11/8/2010 Blind Pig Ann Arbor Michigan
11/9/2010 Rex Theatre Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
11/10/2010 Tralfamadore Music Hall Buffalo New York
11/11/2010 Westcott Theater Syracuse New York
11/12/2010 Higher Ground Burlington Vermont
11/13/2010 Port City Music Hall Portland Maine
11/14/2010 Stone Pony Asbury Park New Jersey
11/15/2010 The Canal Club Richmond Virginia
11/16/2010 Chameleon Club Lancaster Pennsylvania
11/17/2010 World Cafe Live Philadelphia Pennsylvania
11/18/2010 Sonar Club Stage Baltimore Maryland
11/19/2010 Brooklyn Bowl Brooklyn New York
11/20/2010 Paradise Rock Club Boston Massachusetts
11/21/2010 River Street Jazz Cafe Wilkes Barre Pennsylvania
11/22/2010 Martin's Downtown Bar & Grill Roanoke Virginia
11/23/2010 Headliners Music Hall Louisville Kentucky
11/24/2010 20th Century Theater Cincinnati Ohio
11/25/2010 Southbound Knoxville Tennessee
11/26/2010 412 Market Chattanooga Tennessee
11/27/2010 Limelight Night Club Nashville Tennessee
11/28/2010 Newby's Memphis Tennessee
11/29/2010 Revolution Music Room Little Rock Arkansas
11/30/2010 Proud Larrys Oxford Mississippi
12/1/2010 Zydeco Birmingham Alabama
12/2/2010 Masquerade Atlanta Georgia
12/3/2010 Music Farm Charleston South Carolina
12/4/2010 Freebird Live Jacksonville Florida

Railroad Earth: New Album, New Bassist - On TOUR

After celebrating the end of their first decade together with a massive fan release, Railroad Earth Retrospective: 2001-2009, the tightly-woven unit of Railroad Earth is embarking on a new chapter in their musical journey. The rootsy Americana ensemble will hit the stage again on their first tour of 2010 with a new bass player, a new record deal (One Haven Music), and a new album in the can (to be released late Summer 2010) for what is expected to be a great year for the revitalized Railroad Earth. With Spring tour dates mostly focused on the Eastern Seaboard, fans can expect an newly energized live show with surprises around every bend.

After coming off a highly successful 2009, Railroad Earth is preparing for another year of sold-out theaters and large club performances. The band has built up some incredible steam over the past few years with highly notable performances on some of the most prestigious stages in the country, including; the Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, CO, Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits Festival, Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Rothbury, 10,000 Lakes Festival and many more.

Collectively, Railroad Earth wields an impressive arsenal of sounds, with each player bringing a variety of instruments and tones to the collective. The unique howl of an edgy rock-inflected violin, a fat-toned acoustic guitar with sounds bordering on a classic Gibson motif, wild fanning mandolin chording that has an almost piano-like attack, rolling or clawing banjo and dobro, and a slamming rhythm section driven by precise, rock-hard drumming and an aggressively, pumping upright bass. All of this delivered with surprisingly unique vocals, powerful harmonies and world-class songwriting.

To be more precise, Railroad Earth features songwriter/singer, Todd Sheaffer (Lead vocals, acoustic guitars), Tim Carbone (Violin, electric guitar, vocals), John Skehan (Mandolin, vocals), Andy Goessling (Acoustic guitars, banjo, dobro, mandolin, flute, pennywhistle, saxophones and vocals), Carey Harmon (Drums, hand percussion, vocals) and newcomer Andrew Altman (Upright bass), formerly of the Southeast band, The Codetalkers .

Railroad Earth’s unique sound is one that may be hard to categorize, but is also damn hard to shake! Each live performance is like a journey into the beating heart of American life, its heartaches and its triumphs. A true musical celebration, this is one tour that is not to be missed.

4/22/2010 The 8 x 10 Baltimore Maryland
4/23/2010 The Orange Peel Asheville North Carolina
4/24/2010 Variety Playhouse Atlanta Georgia
4/26/2010 Workplay Theatre Birmingham Alabama
4/27/2010 The Engine Room Tallahassee Florida
4/28/2010 Tipitina's New Orleans Louisiana
4/29/2010 Tipitina's French Quarter New Orleans Louisiana
4/30/2010 Attitudes Bar Blacksburg Virginia
5/1/2010 Washington & Lee University Lexington Virginia
5/13/2010 Port City Music Hall Portland Maine
5/14/2010 Lupo's Heartbreak Hotel Providence Rhode Island
5/15/2010 Bromberg's Big Noise Wilmington Delaware
5/20/2010 Keswick Theatre Glenside Pennsylvania
5/21/2010 Brown's Island Richmond Virginia
5/22/2010 Cat's Cradle Carrboro North Carolina
5/23/2010 Visulite Theatre Charlotte North Carolina
5/27/2010 Allegany County Fairgrounds Cumberland Center Maryland
5/28/2010 Allegany County Fairgrounds Cumberland Maryland
5/30/2010 Summer Camp 2010 at Three Sister's Chillicothe Illinois
6/1/2010 Old Rock House St Louis Missouri
6/3/2010 Wakarusa Festival Ozark Arkansas
6/4/2010 Wakarusa Festival Ozark Arkansas
6/6/2010 Michael Arnone's Crawfish Fest Augusta New Jersey
6/17/2010 The Temptress (Rocks Off Boat) New York City New York
6/19/2010 Clearwater Festival Croton on Hudson New York
7/1/2010 High Sierra Music Festival Quincy California
7/2/2010 High Sierra Music Festival Quincy California
7/10/2010 All Good Music Festival and Campout Masontown West Virginia
7/16/2010 Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival Oak Hill New York
7/23/2010 Floydfest Floyd Virginia
7/24/2010 The Stone Pony Asbury Park New Jersey
7/25/2010 Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival Trumansburg New York
8/15/2010 Mile High Music Festival Commerce City Colorado
8/20/2010 YarmonyGrass Music Festival Bond Colorado
8/21/2010 YarmonyGrass Music Festival Bond Colorado
8/27/2010 Music on the Mountaintop Festival Boone North Carolina


Great American Taxi Donates Track to Coal Miners Relief Fund

Just in time for Earth Day (April 22), Great American Taxi, whose current album Reckless Habits is climbing the Americana radio airplay charts, has donated a free download of a song, “Appalachian Soul” culled from its debut album Streets of Gold, to raise awareness of the plight of coal miners and their communities in West Virginia. The track is offered free to radio stations that agree to direct listeners to GreatAmericanTaxi.com, which in turn links to West Virginia Council of Churches website, which collects donations for the miners.

GAT frontman Vince Herman, who grew up in West Virginia, comments: “Great American Taxi sends our thoughts out to the families and communities effected by the mining disaster at the upper big branch mine. We hope that their unconquerable Appalachian spirit and families can help them navigate these difficult times. The country and the world share in their grief. We need coal.  We need our miners to be safe. We need understanding on all sides of this contentious issue of our national energy policy. We would like to make Taxis' tribute to that  Appalachian spirit available as a download here and suggest a donation to the WV council of churches to assist  the families of our fallen brothers. Let's all come together and honor the families who have paid that ultimate price for our energy needs and hope that this is the last such disaster we must face.”

In the past five years, Great American Taxi has become one of the best-known headliners on the jam band circuit, their uninhibited sound a swinging concoction of swampy blues, progressive bluegrass, funky New Orleans strut, Southern boogie, honky tonk, gospel and good old fashioned rock ’n’ roll. That loose, anything-can-happen feel is the hallmark of Reckless Habits, the band’s second album, which was recorded in Loveland, Colo., with producer Tim Carbone (from Railroad Earth) bringing the feel of an onstage performance to the recording process. The new album was released through Thirty Tigers on March 2, 2010.

Blurt called Reckless Habits “a giddy combination of boogie, blues, bluegrass, nu-grass and honky-tonk, it's as readily infectious and genuinely freewheeling as its eclectic content might imply. Hopefully this Great American Taxi will continue to take listeners along for similarly spirited rides in the future.”  Country Standard Time called it  “a well rounded album that fully pays homage to Gram Parsons and his vision of a cosmic American sound that incorporates all the pages of the American Roots songbook.”

When banjo player Mark Vann of Leftover Salmon died of cancer in 2002, that band desolved. Salmon singer/guitarist/mandolinist Vince Herman had a few rough years and survived a broken neck before joining keyboardist Chad Staehly for a superstar jam to benefit the Rainforest Action Group in Boulder in March 2005. “We put together a dream band of the best local musicians for a one-off gig,” Herman recalls. “It worked so well we had to do it again, and again, and again.” And so Great American Taxi was born. The current lineup includes Herman, Staehly, guitarist Jim Lewin, bassist Brian Adams and drummer Chris Sheldon.

Amelia’s Mechanics Tour Dates

Amelia's Mechanics hires Nashville-based drummer and percussionist Jamie Dick to perform with the band on select tour dates this spring. Dick has been performing live for over 15 years and most recently recorded with Rayna Gellert and Abigail Washburn on each of the artist's forthcoming albums.
Amelia's Mechanics is touring in support of their debut album "North, South" released earlier this year. The band's tour launches Thursday, March 11 in Raleigh, NC at the Pour House Music Hall and takes through North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia and is supported by the following radio stations: WDVX, WNCW, WUNC, WKNC, WUIN, WQFS, WXDU, WUSC, WUAG, WDWG, and WRMT.
Current 2010 Performance Schedule:
The Pour House Music Hall - March 11 - (Raleigh, NC)
The Whiskey - March 13 - (Wilmington, NC)
Home Team BBQ - March 18 - (Sullivan's Island, SC)
Coffee Underground - March 19 - (Greenville, SC)
White Mule Music Pub - March 20 (Columbia, SC)
The Basement - March 24 - (Nashville, TN)
MoDaddy's - March 25 - (Asheville, NC)
RA Fountain - March 26 - (Fountain, NC) 
Union Alley - March 27 - (Washington, NC)
The Broad Street Cafe - April 2 - (Durham, NC)
The Evening Muse - April 3 - (Charlotte, NC)
Acoustic Coffeehouse - April 8 - (Johnson City, TN)
The Canyons - April 9 - (Blowing Rock, NC)
Pisgah Brewing Co. - April 10 (Black Mountain, NC)
The Five Spot - April 22 - (Atlanta, GA)
Carrboro Arts Center - April 24 - (Chapel Hill, NC)
The Carolina Theater - April 25 - (Greensboro, NC)
Preservation Pub - April 28 - (Knoxville, TN)
The Garage - April 29 - (Winston-Salem, NC)
The Tipsy Teapot - April 30 - (Greenville, NC)
MerleFest - May 2 - (Wilkesboro, NC) - Molly McGinn PA
Purple Fiddle - May 5 - (Petersberg, WV)
Ashland Coffee and Tea House - May 6 - (Ashland, VA)
FemmeFest - May 22 - (Charlotte, NC)
Music in the Woods - May 29 - (Paris Mnt. State Park)
The Maguire Theater - June 3 - (Elizabeth, City, NC)
BRIEF BIOGRAPHY:
Amelia’s Mechanics is an all-female, Americana music trio whose instrumentation and vocal harmonies traverse classical, country, and jazz genres resulting in a sound best described as vintage country with a moonshine concerto. The band, whose name, debut album title, and lyrics are inspired by the accomplishments of early aviatrix and aviators, explorers and pioneers, writes and sings about the mechanics underlying life’s triumphs and tragedies. Amelia's Mechanics is Molly Miller (Lead Guitar and Vocals,) Kasey Horton (Viola,) Molly McGinn (Rhythm Guitar and Vocals,) and Jamie Dick (Drums and Percussion.)