blair

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.

Blair Announces Feb/Mar Tour With Say Hi

Brooklyn-based artist Blair has announced new tour dates in support of Say Hi this February and March. The lengthy jaunt will launch February 18th at Neurolux in Boise, ID and wrap up March 30th at The Media Club in Vancouver, BC. The tour includes a hometown show on March 7th at the Bowery Ballroom in New York, as well as two dates during this year's SXSW festival. Blair's debut full-length Die Young was released early last year by Autumn Tone Records.

Die Young is a winsome mix of dreamy, hazy indie pop influenced by Blair's love for '90s FM radio (think Beck and Nirvana) and the records spun on her mother's turntable (like Bob Dylan and Neil Young) while growing up in New Orleans, LA. The album was written - in both her hometown and Los Angeles, CA - and re-recorded over the course of five years. The songs were finally laid to tape in New Orleans using both traditional studios and makeshift home setups, with the help of producer Keith Ferguson and a host of musician friends filling out the parts.

As her airy vocals tell stories of heartache, daydreams and memories, throughout the album Blair shows herself to be a nimble musician and songwriter with an innate sense of sumptuous melody. Whether the angular guitar pop of opener "Rampage," the sweetly yearning "Hearts" (listen/download here), the sprightly whimsy of "Hello Halo," the '60s girl-group swing of "Paris France," or the soaring, lush "Wolfboy" (listen/download here), it's easy to understand why PasteMagazine.com gave her its 'Best Of What's Next' label and why Muzzle Of Bees declared Die Young "...a pop album for this generation...one of the year's most promising surprises."

--

Blair tour dates (all in support of Say Hi):

FEB. 17 BOISE, ID NEUROLUX

FEB. 18 SALT LAKE CITY, UT KILBY COURT

FEB. 19 DENVER, CO HI DIVE

FEB. 20 LAWRENCE, KS JACKPOT SALOON

FEB. 21 OMAHA, NE SLOWDOWN

FEB. 22 MINNEAPOLIS, MN 7TH STREET ENTRY

FEB. 23 MADISON, WI HIGH NOON SALOON

FEB. 25 CHICAGO, IL LINCOLN HALL

FEB. 26 BLOOMINGTON, IN VIDEO SALOON

FEB. 27 NEWPORT, KY SOUTHGATE HOUSE

FEB. 28 COLUMBUS, OH SKULLY'S

MAR. 1 PONTIAC, MI PIKE ROOM AT CROFOOT

MAR. 2 CLEVELAND, OH GROG SHOP

MAR. 3 BUFFALO, NY MOHAWK PLACE

MAR. 4 TORONTO, ON EL MOCAMBO

MAR. 5 MONTREAL, QC CASA DEL POPOLO

MAR. 6 BOSTON, MA MIDDLE EAST (Downstairs)

MAR. 7 NEW YORK, NY BOWERY BALLROOM

MAR. 8 PHILADELPHIA, PA JOHNNY BRENDA'S

MAR. 9 WASHINGTON, DC BLACK CAT BACKSTAGE

MAR. 10 ASHEVILLE, NC THE GREY EAGLE

MAR. 11 ATLANTA, GA THE EARL

MAR. 12 ORLANDO, FL BACKBOOTH

MAR. 13 TAMPA, FL CROWBAR

MAR. 14 TALLAHASSEE, FL CLUB DOWNUNDER

MAR. 16 HOUSTON, TX FITZGERALD'S (Downstairs)

MAR. 17 AUSTIN, TX SXSW

MAR. 18 AUSTIN, TX SXSW

MAR. 19 DALLAS, TX THE LOFT

MAR. 22 PHOENIX, AZ THE RHYTHM ROOM

MAR. 23 TUCSON, AZ PLUSH

MAR. 24 SAN DIEGO, CA THE CASBAH

MAR. 25 LOS ANGELES, CA THE ECHO

MAR. 26 SAN FRANCISCO, CA BOTTOM OF THE HILL

MAR. 28 PORTLAND, OR MISSISSIPPI STUDIOS

MAR. 29 VICTORIA, BC LUCKY BAR

MAR. 30 VANCOUVER, BC THE MEDIA CLUB

The Warner Brothers Studio Albums + Dead.net exclusive

What a long, strange trip it's been! In celebration of the 40th Anniversary of Workingman's Dead and American Beauty, we proudly present THE WARNER BROS. STUDIO ALBUMS, a five-LP boxed set commemorating those tremendous and transformative early years. Due September 21st, the collection contains The Grateful Dead (1967), Workingman's Dead, and American Beauty (1970), plus the original mixes for Anthem Of The Sun (1968) and Aoxomoxoa (1969), available on vinyl for the first time in nearly 40 years!

This stunning set also features detailed replicas of the original albums housed in a hard-shell case with an accompanying 12" x 12" book containing unpublished photos and new liner notes by our friend Blair Jackson. And as always, we've ensured the highest degree of quality - these albums were pressed on 180-gram vinyl at RTI using lacquers cut from the original analog masters. Now all you've got to do is gently place the needle on the record and slip into auditory bliss!

Order from Dead.net and receive an exclusive reproduction of a rare 1968 7" single (in a picture sleeve) that features the studio version of "Dark Star" (b/w "Born Cross-Eyed"), clocking in at a concise 2:38. You'll also receive a reproduction of a rare 1967 promotional poster from the Warner Bros. Records archive. The 7" and poster are yours only when you place your order at Dead.net.