herman

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.

Vince Herman to host KBCO Groove Show

Howdy Halloween freakers, Vince Herman here! The Salmon are swimming into the Fillmore again for a wild night of music, costumes, debauchery and late night parading down Colfax!

Next Saturday is our Zombie Jamboree at the Fillmore Auditorium! We will be celebrating Halloween with Todd Snider featuring Great American Taxi opening the show. There will also be a costume contest with a great grand prize, see details below.

On Friday October 29th the debauchery begins with the Drew Emmitt Band and Great American Taxi featuring Todd Snider. We're performing a kickoff party to the Halloween weekend at the Gothic Theatre In Englewood. This holiday is just too much fun for one show, so come out and make a weekend of it.

I’ll be hosting the KBCO Groove Show this Saturday! It’s a jamband show on a mainstream FM station. Hippies are taking over everywhere! Check it out on the web or on your radio here in Boulder. This Saturday from 10pm-12am tune in to 97.3 KBCO Boulder/Denver or on the web at www.kbco.com.  Turn up, Drop in, Freak out!!

Salmon is in its twentieth year of having you great folks to play for! We are eternally grateful for your ears and your time, and hope you all have a great holiday!

See you all soon,

Vince Herman

Get your Fillmore tickets HERE

Great American Taxi summer festival blitz continues

Listen carefully to Reckless Habits, the second album from Great American Taxi, and you’ll hear a political edge to some of the music created by one of the best country-, rock- and bluegrass-influenced Americana bands in the land.  And the band is entirely comfortable bringing its danceable albeit politically-tinged songs to summer festivals.

“Woodie Guthrie was a huge influence for us and we truly believe in the power of song,” said Taxi front man Vince Herman in a recent interview.  Songs about hard luck times tend to “hold a man up and make him feel stronger than he is — and they make him feel good about his community. We want to address the issues appropriate to our times, while making music that gets people up and moving.”

Great American Taxi is at ease when it comes to touching upon a serious subject in a song. The New Millennium Blues, a track from the band’s latest album, Reckless Habits, is about the sad state of the U.S. economy.  “It’s about how we can’t afford our pickup trucks and how our jobs are all gone overseas,” said Herman.

But no one can accuse Taxi of crying the blues. Even Great American Taxi protest songs are generally up-beat, containing Cajun, calypso, and bluegrass melodies and a retro, ’70s feel — think the Grateful Dead, Wilco, and the Byrds.

“We like to get as much dancing going as possible,” said Herman, who enjoys experimenting with traditional Southern boogie and swampy blues-rock sounds.  Herman says of festival crowds, “People are at their best at festivals — maybe because they can get away from the rest of the world and feel like they’re on holiday.”

Taxi’s latest CD release Reckless Habits climbed to # 3 and remains in the top ten for spins on both the Jambands.com radio chart and the Colorado radio chart, complemented by two months in the top 25 on the Americana radio chart.

Great American Taxi’s latest video for the track “American Beauty” is here.

The band’s also recently donated a track, “Appalachian Soul” to raise awareness of the coal miners’ relief fund.


GREAT AMERICAN TAXI ON THE ROAD, 2010


Sat., Aug. 7  WILLITS, CA Dead on the Creek

Sun., Aug. 8 NEVADA CITY, NV Cooper’s Ale Works

Wed., Aug. 11  SEATTLE WA Tractor Tavern

Fri., Aug. 13  RED DEER, AB CANADA Central Music Festival

Sat., Aug. 14 WHITEFISH, MT Stumptown Summer Hoedown – Armory Fields

Fri., Aug.  20  ALMA, CO THC Fest – Alma’s Only Bistro

Sat., Aug. 21 WELLSTON, MI Hoxeyville Festival

Sun., Aug. 22  FORT COLLINS, CO Bohemian Nights @ New West Fest

Sat., Aug. 28, 2:30 p.m.  NEDERLAND, CO Nedfest

Sat., Aug. 28, 10 p.m. FORT COLLINS, CO Hodi’s Half Note

Sun., Sept. 5  DENVER, CO Electric Avenue Music and Arts Festival

Mon., Sept. 6  BOULDER, CO Boulder Hometown Fair

Wed., Sept. 8 DES MOINES, IA People’s Bar

Thurs., Sept. 9 CHICAGO, IL Martyr’s

Fri., Sept. 10 HARRODSBURG, KY Terrapin Hill Harvest Festival

Sat., Sept. 11  ELDRIDGE, MO Green Mountain Eco Fest – Main Stage <http://www.greenmountainecofest.com/>

Thurs., Sept. 16  RALEIGH, NC Berkeley Café

Fri., Sept. 17  BRISTOL, TN Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion

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.

DiscoverHope Fund Present: Band Together for Hope

Come enjoy the music and contribute to the global effort to end poverty for some of the 3 billion people who live on less than $2 a day and are trapped in poverty so they cannot adequately feed, clothe, or shelter themselves or their families. DiscoverHope Fund (DHF) is a 501(c)3 promoting abundance for women and their families in economic poverty through microcredit and entrepreneurial training.  DHF’s “Microcredit Plus” model implements a dual approach to poverty alleviation—providing microloans and entrepreneurial training to help loan recipients build their businesses. DHF asks loan recipients what they need to build and sustain their business; then it answers with business trainings, literacy classes, artisan workshops and more. A percentage of ticket sales and funds from an on-site opportunity drawing will go toward our work to create a new consciousness of prosperity that women can pass onto their children, families, communities, society, and this world. DiscoverHope is proud to present an evening of great music starring Americana without Borders allstars – Great American Taxi.

In the past five years, Great American Taxi has become one of the best-known headliners on the jam band circuit. Their uninhibited sound is a swinging concoction of swampy blues, progressive bluegrass, funky New Orleans strut, Southern boogie, honky tonk country, gospel, and good ol’ fashioned rock ’n’ roll. Great American Taxi was born when singer, guitarist, and mandolin player Vince Herman of Leftover Salmon joined keyboard player and singer Chad Staehly for a superstar jam to benefit the Rainforest Action Group in Boulder, in March of 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.” Great American Taxi quickly evolved into one of the best country-, rock-, and bluegrass- influenced jam bands in the land, masterfully blending acoustic and electric instruments into music they call “Americana Without Borders."

Great American Taxi has been equated with roots rockers like the New Riders of the Purple Sage, Grateful Dead, Wilco, Uncle Tupelo, The Byrds, and Little Feat. Herman finds the comparisons flattering. “We’re definitely connected to all the acts in the country/rock spectrum, as well as the spirit of Gram Parsons and Woody Guthrie,” he says. “We want to address the issues appropriate to our times, while making music that gets people up and moving.”

The benefit will also feature an amazing opportunity drawing with a grand prize of 2 tickets to 2010 10th Anniversary Summer Camp Music Festival in Chillicothe, IL as well as other prizes such as signed and unsigned rock artwork, local gift certificates, and other amazing prices to be announced.

Who: Great American Taxi, Chicago Farmer & Farmaggedon

Where: Coconut Louie’s 2303 E. Washington Bloomington, IL

When: Thursday, April 15th 2010

WHY: To support Discover Hope Fund

COST: $8

WEB: www.discoverhopefund.org

Folk, Americana & Alt-Country in Fort Fun

On February 26, 2010, James McMurtry, Great American Taxi, and the Cracker Duo graced Fort Collins with their music and their special blends of Folk, Americana, and Alt-Country. Folk culture is defined as a specific group of people relating to a certain locale.  Fort Collins night of folk music couldn’t have been more appropriate on the anniversary of Johnny Cash’s birthday.

Todd Snider ft. Austin, Herman & Kaufmann @ Boulder Theater

Todd Snider- for the Grateful Web

Todd Snider's performance will feature Jeff Austin, Ben Kaufmann (YMSB) and Vince Herman (Leftover Salmon).

Keith Richards said humor was rock and roll's greatest weapon, Bob Dylan proved it and Snider takes it to heart. For twelve years, Snider has been a satirist, class cutup and the rare artist who understands and celebrates the connections between the Stones, Dylan, Bill Hicks, John Prine, Mitch Hedberg, Kris Kristofferson, Hunter S. Thompson and Randy Newman. Snider's records are fun even when they aren't being funny, funny even when they're sad, and no less truthful for the laughs.

For fans of rock 'n' roll, folk, country and Americana music have long been held in Snider's sway. His last album, 2006's The Devil You Know, landed him on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno and Late Night With David Letterman, and it appeared on numerous year-end Top 10 lists. Peace Queer, his newest release, is just the beginning of his typically unique vision. It is the first in a trilogy. Even as we celebrate the release of Peace Queer, Snider is already working on the follow-up, with Rolling Stones producer Don Was. After that, there will be a rock album called Shit Sandwich.

Marquee Magazine & 97.3 KBCO present
TODD SNIDER
ft. VERY special guests Jeff Austin, Vince Herman & Ben Kaufmann
with Keith Sykes
Friday, January 30
doors 7:30pm, show 8:30pm

Boulder Theater
2032 14th Street
Boulder, CO 80302
303.786.7030
www.bouldertheater.com

Vince Herman with The David Nelson Band in Hawaii!

photos by Sam Holloway- for the Grateful Web

Vince Herman (Leftover Salmon, Great American Taxi) will be joining the David Nelson Band for their extended stay in Hawaii this January.  This is the 3rd year The David Nelson Band has made the trip to the islands and the fist year Vince will be joining in on their fun little island adventure.  The David Nelson Band includes Pete Sears, John Molo, Barry Sless, and Mookie Siegel.  The trip to the islands will start on Friday, January 16th in Pahoa, HI and then its off to Keauhou, HI on the 17th. On the 18th the band and Herman will be in Ocean View, HI followed by a private party in S. Kona on the 19th.  The private party will be an all day affair starting around noon and finishing up at 7 with a full day of sun, music and an island feast all right on the beach - admission includes food, beer, and wine.  After a short break to give everyone ample time to enjoy the big island everyone will be moving on to Maui to continue the festivities!  January 22nd in Kihei at Soundawg's Pool Party, the 23rd at Stella Blues also in Kihei and wrapping up the whole adventure on the 24th at Charley's in Paia, Maui.  For more information on the whole ride click here.  FESTIVAAAAALLLLLL!!!