Friday, August 28, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Horehound is so good I need to write about it. It's been a LONG time since I heard something that really moved me, and this only happens when all the stars align and the right person with the right message with the right bass line and the right melody all coalesce into the one thing that I've been dying to hear but had no idea. The Dead Weather is one of those things. A spur of the moment idea of an album that took around three weeks to make with no prep or logic on how they might tour. Just musicians getting together for the love of music and the sake of experimentation.

Now i'll be the first to admit I was suspect when I heard that Jack White was ina new group and he wasn't lead vocals OR guitar (are you TRYING to kill me?) But I trusted him, this was his idea, his vision. It is also the first production off of his new label Third Man, a place in Nashville in which I will make a pilgrimage and is named after White's first job. So if I'm such a fan that I can stalk out this kind of information, where was the resistance to the formation of this group actually coming from you might ask. It's just that lately I've been stuck listening to Ruth Brown, Memphis Minnie, Julia Lee, Sister Rosetta and the likes. I've been stuck in a time warp and want my music to have some sort of authenticity, some sort of history, some sort of... soul. I'm not really a HUGE fan of The Kills or Queens of the Stone Age, and even though I love the Raconteurs, it's just White really that grabs me. So, I was suspect.

The first time I turned this album on... dammit. I hate to start from the end but Will There Be Enough Water, has guitar reminiscent of the great blues Guitarists from Mali, with that slow story telling drawl in the darkness that is embossed with southern spiritual sounding vocals from the back up singers. The drums keep the song focused in the same way a ghost makes you squint at night. I could get lost in this song and never come back. It brought out a grimy, primal, instinctive love that makes me keep coming back. It's simply a masterpiece. The video that accompanies this song is a bit of black and white cinema that reminds me of The Notorious Betty Paige, directed by Mary Harron, Paige was also from Nashville. If you have the time check it out.

The album opens with 60 Feet Tall, written by Fertita and Mosshart. This song is so raw, and Mosshart's raspy voice brings this song right into the era I had already been listening to lately. The thing that was magical that happened on this album was all the elements I had been previously been listening to, were met here. The story telling, the darkness, the bass lines, the vocals... the blues. Which brings me to So Far From Your Weapon. I was NOT ready. This song was instantly inducted to the classics when I heard it the first time. Whatever my opinion of Mosshart was prior to this album, I'll never question her songwriting skills again. I FEEL this song. Not in the omg I'm at a party and this makes me want to move type way, no I feel this in my bones, in my voice, I feel that the bullet was cursed. This song can bring you to a place you might not be ready for if you let it.

I tried to go back and listen to The Kills to try to find more of this but I couldn't, all the elements were just not there. The collective just brought it out of her, all of them, I think. I think this is the kind of work I've been looking for that artists used to do in the 70's, just sit and do jam sessions together, be creative, bounce ideas off each other and collaborate. Only instead of Hendrix and Davis just talking about, these four actually DID it. I'm going to stop rambling and hope that you go ahead and give this a listen. If you really think you love rock, and you really think you know the blues, then this will knock your socks off. I promise.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

never forget you

on the menu tonight:
arctic monkeys

had to feature these new albums, between these two (wild young hearts, humbug) and whorehound, I haven't really been listening to anything else except that madcon song. so enjoy!!! new "indie" (I don't think i can still cal indie if it's super popular).

stay green.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Ruth Brown

I LOVE this woman. She's awesome and sings exactly what's on my mind... So I thought I'd share. Enjoy!

Ruth Brown (January 30, 1928 – November 17, 2006) was an American R&B singer, and actress noted for bringing a popular music style to rhythm and blues in a series of hit songs for fledgling Atlantic Records in the 1950s, such as "So Long", "Teardrops from My Eyes" and "(Mama) He Treats Your Daughter Mean". For these contributions, Atlantic became known as "The house that Ruth built".

Following a resurgence that began in the mid-1970s and peaked in the eighties, Brown used her influence to press for musicians' rights regarding royalties and contracts, which led to the founding of the Rhythm and Blues Foundation.[1] Her performances in the Broadway musical Black and Blue earned Brown a Tony Award, and the original soundtrack won a Grammy Award.

powered by ODEO

stay green.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Punk meets Islam for new generation in U.S.


The guitarist stands in front of a mirror messing with his mohawk. The drummer strikes a wild tempo. The singer rips off his T-shirt and begins to scream the lyrics.

They're young. They're punk. And they're rocking both their Muslim and American worlds with their music, lyrics and style.

"A lot of times people say, 'Oh wow, look, brown people playing music' [but] it's more than that," said 25-year-old Pakistani-American Shahjehan Khan, the lead singer for a Muslim punk band, The Kominas.

The Boston-based band is one of a handful of Muslim punk bands that emerged in the United States in the past few years.

The members of this four-person rock group with South Asian roots hold varying views on religion. One says he's an atheist; three others identify as Muslims -- both practicing and non-practicing. For them, punk music is a way to rebel against their conservative cultural upbringing and the frustrations of growing up a young Muslim in America.

"We aren't [just] some alternative to a stereotypical Muslim. We actually might be offering some sort of insights for people at large about religion, about the world," said 26-year-old bassist Basim Usmani.

Blending traditional South Asian rhythms with punk rock beats, they sing in both English and Punjabi. (Kominas means "scum-bag" in Punjabi, according to the band.) Their songs can be at once political, serious, satirical and insinuating.

Their risqué lyrics and provocative song titles such as "Sharia Law in the USA," "Suicide Bomb the GAP" and "Rumi was a Homo" -- a protest song against homophobia in the American Muslim community -- have drawn the attention of Muslims, non-Muslims, fans and critics alike.

"You sort of have to throw it in peoples' faces and be shocking in order to give people a different way to think about stuff," said Usmani.
"These punk, metal and rap scenes - so-called extreme music scenes -- are addressing issues that mainstream music doesn't," said Mark LeVine, a professor of Middle Eastern history at University of California, Irvine, who is also a musician and author of "Heavy Metal Islam."

"[Punk] allows them to rebel against society and their own culture at the same time," he said. iReport: Is Islam at odds with American values?

Before the Islamic punk movement in North America had a voice, it had a story. The Muslim punk scene began to gel in 2003 when novelist and convert to Islam, Michael Muhammad Knight self-published his book, "The Taqwacores" about a fictional Muslim punk scene in Buffalo, New York.

The book opens with a poem called "Muhammed was a Punk Rocker" and describes both conventional and unconventional characters including a Shi'ite skinhead, a conservative Sunni Muslim, a burka-wearing feminist punk and a Sufi who sports a Mohawk and drinks alcohol.

"The punk rock kids I would hang out with weren't even Muslim," 31-year old Knight recalls. "They were so fiercely individualistic -- I wish that I could be a Muslim in that way: not be ashamed of my confusion, not be ashamed of my doubts. Just be myself and be proud of who I am."

The novel's title, "Taqwacore," is a hybrid word stemming from the Arabic "taqwa," meaning "god consciousness," and "core" referring to "hardcore" -- a genre of punk music. It's now a general term for Muslim punk rock.

The popularity of the book, which Knight said was born out of a search to find his identity as a Muslim-American, grew in underground youth circles and online.

It didn't take long before real-life "taqwacore" bands like The Kominas began blooming across the country.
"It makes sense why punk has been the music of choice for young, politically active Muslims who are musical," said LeVine. "The straight edge movement in punk which was about no drugs, no alcohol, was clean yet very intense and political. It's a way for them to rebel against their families in some extreme ways yet still be ritualistically, 'good Muslims.' "

"Taqwacore" gave voice to many young Muslim-Americans who felt muted by circumstances and created an opening for bands like Al-Thawra, Vote Hezbollah, and Secret Trial Five -- an all-girl punk band out of Vancouver, Canada.

In the summer of 2007, five of the taqwacore bands organized a "taqwa-tour" of the northeastern United States. They played in city after city, traveling in a green school bus with TAQWA painted on the front bought by Knight for $2,000 on eBay.

This summer, The Kominas continue to strike a chord with audiences around the country, hitting cities from San Francisco to New York on a multi-city tour.

The taqwacore movement has also inspired two upcoming films - a dramatic feature film based on the book and a documentary.

Many conservative Muslims may peg young taqwacores as heretic for their suggestive and irreverent lyrics. But the musicians say they are just trying to show both cultures how broad the spectrum of belief can be.

Like many young adults balancing their religious beliefs with American culture, some young Muslims in the United States say it's a constant struggle to be accepted in both worlds.

"I had a lot of conflicted feelings growing up a Muslim in America," said 25-year-old Kominas drummer Imran Malik. "It was hard not being able to do the same things that everyone else around you is doing without feeling guilty about them."
Knight, who grew up with a Catholic mother and white supremacist father, converted to Islam when he was 16. He said his message is not one of blasphemy but rather an extension of his discontent with the rigid etiquette that dictates certain practices within Islam and the stereotypes of Muslims in American.

"Muslims haven't been fully accepted as Americans but the American experience hasn't been accepted as something that can contribute to the Muslim world," said Knight.

Knight said writing the book helped him and others connect through shared experiences.

"When I first wrote it, I felt like there would never be a place for me in the Muslim community and that has really turned around a lot," he said. "The book gave me the community I needed, it connected me to all these kids that were also confused and who also went through the things that I went through."

That connection is vital to taqwacore music, bassist Usmani said.

"The music is great, but the conversation is the key to all of this. The dialogue that we have inspired is really invaluable."

"I don't think Islam is ever going to go away, I'm just trying to see how it best fits in my life."

(thanks Rob for the contribution)

Sunday, August 09, 2009

those down home blues

On the menu tonight:

I Haven't been this excited to do a show in a while. But this one grew on me. I was in Toronoto, Canada listening to some calypso from 1912-1956 and I had this resurgence of older passionate music come to me. It was craziness. I came home and started playing some of my old Sister Rosetta, Memphis Minnie, Julia Lee, Lee Hazelwood, and what do you know I almost forgot that The Dead Weather was coming out. HOW could I forget Jack White?! If youknow anything about him then you'll know his roots are in the blues, and MAN does this album deliver. Hopefully at the end of the set you'll see (hear) how these initial singers, influenced all of us.

powered by ODEO

Lee Hazlewood (born Barton Lee Hazlewood[1] July 9, 1929August 4, 2007) was an American country and pop singer, songwriter, and record producer, most widely known for his work with guitarist Duane Eddy during the late fifties and singer Nancy Sinatra in the sixties.[2]

Hazlewood had a distinctive baritone voice that added an ominous resonance to his music. Hazlewood's collaborations with Nancy Sinatra as well as his solo output in the late 1960s and early 1970s have been praised as an essential contribution to a sound often described as "Cowboy Psychedelia" or "Saccharine Underground".[3]

The son of an oil man, Hazlewood was born in Mannford, Oklahoma[1] and spent most of youth living between Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas, and Louisiana. He grew up listening to pop and bluegrass music. [4] Hazlewood spent his teenage years in Port Neches, Texas where he was exposed to a rich Gulf Coast music tradition. Hazlewood studied for a medical degree at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas.[1] He served with the United States Army during the Korean War.[1]

Following discharge from the military, Hazlewood worked as a disc jockey in Arizona while honing his songwriting skills. His first hit as a producer and songwriter was "The Fool", recorded by rockabilly artist Sanford Clark in 1956. Hazlewood partnered with pioneering rock guitarist Duane Eddy.[1], producing and cowriting an unprecedented string of hit instrumental records, including "Peter Gunn", "Boss Guitar", "40 Miles Of Bad Road", "Shazam!", "Rebel Rouser" and "[Dance With The] Guitar Man".

Memphis Minnie (June 3, 1897 – August 6, 1973[1]) was an American blues guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter. She was the only female blues artist who matched her male contemporaries as both a singer and an instrumentalist. Born Lizzie Douglas in Algiers, Louisiana, Minnie was one of the most influential and pioneering female blues musicians and guitarists of all time.[1] She recorded for forty years, almost unheard of for any woman in show business at the time and unique among female blues artists. A flamboyant character who wore bracelets made of silver dollars, she was the biggest female blues singer from the early Depression years through World War II. One of the first blues artists to take up the electric guitar, in 1942, she combined her Louisiana-country roots with Memphis blues to produce her own unique country-blues sound; along with Big Bill Broonzy and Tampa Red, she took country blues into electric urban blues, paving the way for Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, Little Walter, and Jimmy Rogers to travel from the small towns of the south to the big cities of the north.

Julia Lee Born in Boonville, Missouri, Lee was raised in Kansas City, and began her musical career around 1920, singing and playing piano in her brother George Lee's band, which for a time also included Charlie Parker. She first recorded on the Merritt record label in 1927 with Jesse Stone as pianist and arranger, and launched a solo career in 1935.

In 1944 she won a recording contract with Capitol Records, and a string of R&B hits followed, including "Gotta Gimme Whatcha Got" (#3 R&B, 1946), "Snatch and Grab It" (#1 R&B for 12 weeks, 1947, selling over 500,000 copies), "King Size Papa" (#1 R&B for 9 weeks, 1948), "I Didn't Like It The First Time (The Spinach Song)" (#4 R&B, 1949), and "My Man Stands Out".

As these titles suggest, she became best known for her trademark double entendre songs, or, as she once said, "the songs my mother taught me not to sing". The records were credited to 'Julia Lee and Her Boy Friends', her session musicians including Jay McShann, Vic Dickenson, Benny Carter, Red Norvo, Nappy Lamare, and Red Nichols.

Although her hits dried up after 1949, she continued as one of the most popular performers in Kansas City until her death in San Diego, California, at the age of 56, from a heart attack.

*****Stone cold Dead In The Market was made with Ella Fitzgerald and Jordan Louis forming the Tympany Five in 1946. It was on the charts #1 for five weeks and was recorded in Trinidad.

The Dead Weather is an American alternative rock super-group formed in Nashville, Tennessee in 2009. Comprised of Alison Mosshart (of The Kills and Discount), Jack White (of The White Stripes and The Raconteurs), Dean Fertita (of Queens of the Stone Age) and Jack Lawrence (of The Raconteurs and The Greenhornes)[1], The Dead Weather was revealed to the public at the opening of Third Man Records' Nashville headquarters on March 11, 2009. The band performed live for the first time at the event, immediately before releasing their debut single "Hang You from the Heavens".

stay blues.


cloud 9 skateboard company