Sunday, December 28, 2008

MySpace Playlist: 12/28/08

Greetings and happy belated holiday wishes from "The Ghost".

Earlier this year, I created weekly playlists on as a means of exposing readers to local music I like. When changed the way they set up playlists, it made it less feasible to do weekly playlists. It also didn't help that their library of local artists was lacking at best. I'm going to try a new tradition by creating a weekly playlist on my personal MySpace page. Each week I will spotlight ten songs; sometimes there will be a theme for the songs, and other times not so much. Either way, it gives me opportunity to share music with my readers.

Speaking of sharing music, I'm going to try to create my first ever podcast. I make no promises how it will turn out, but I'm trying to do a year end countdown, Casey Kasem style. The following ten songs are songs that unfortunately did not make the countdown. Take a good listen, and think about this: if these are the songs that DIDN'T make the countdown, imagine how killer the actual podcast is gonna be.

So, here goes the playlist:

  1. "Dalton the Prophet", Nicholas Altobelli
    Thanks a lot, Nick. You send me your brilliant CD, Waiting for the Flowers to Bloom, after I made the list of songs. Actually, the truth is that it's difficult to pick a singular song off of this CD. The strength of the CD is how perfectly all the songs fit together; to take one song and isolate it seems to take away from the package. Still, "Dalton the Prophet" is an excellent song, but merely a small taste of how good this CD is.

  2. "Color of a Lonely Heart is Blue", Old 97's
    I, like many, found the band's previous CD, Drag It Up, to be a letdown. Rhett and the gang came back full force this year with Blame It on Gravity. This track is easily my favorite off of the CD, and quite possibly the best song Murry Hammond has ever done with the 97's. By the way, Mr. Hammond also released a solo CD this year, titled I Don't Know Where I'm Going, but I'm on My Way, and it's easily one of the best albums of the year.

  3. "Just Got Robbed", Greater Good
    This song just BARELY missed out from being in the podcast. I almost considered doing a top 14 instead of the top 13 that I plan to do just so I could include this song. Unfortunately, top 14 is kind of a weird number.

  4. "Summer Ship", American Werewolf Academy
    AWA was one of the many bands that I had the privilege of getting to play the blog's one year anniversary show. Although "Summer Ship" was really released in 2007 on the Zac Crain for Mayor benefit CD, the song found a more proper release on their new CD, Triceratops.

  5. "No Deliverance", Toadies
    Yay, Toadies are back, yay!

  6. "The Moon", Elkhart
    Much like Nicholas Altobelli's Waiting for the Flowers to Bloom, Elkhart fell victim to the same trap. Their CD was another where the entire disc was wonderful from start to finish, but there was not the one song that stood out from the rest. So I offer you the title track as a taste of Elkhart. Keep an eye on these guys in 2009; I think this is a band whose following will grow.

  7. "Stupid Girl", The Liking Strikes
    This is just such a fun and catchy song. Even the most pretentious indie hipster would have a hard time getting this tune dislodged from his or her head.

  8. "Honey", Erykah Badu
    Ms. Badu hasn't sounded this good since her debut album, in my opinion.

  9. "Bill Cosby", Shibboleth
    This is quite possibly the best instrumental song released all year. Runners up: everything else from Experiment in Error.

  10. "Feelin' the Wait", Menkena
    Okay, I have a confession to make. I added this song to my playlist because the band is allowing anyone who posts a Menkena song on their MySpace page to download the EP free of charge. With beautiful dreamy songs like this, you'll want to do the same thing.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Final Flicker of Sound

It may surprise some of my readers to know this, but I have always been a big fan of the band Flickerstick. I saw them for the first time in 1999 opening up for Grand Street Cryers (yet another band that never received the respect I felt they deserved). I don’t remember much about the set, except for the fact that I thought their songs were unusually catchy. It was about a year later when I got to see my second Flickerstick show, and the band had grown by leaps and bounds. One of the things that immediately caught my eye was the stage presence of lead vocalist Brandin Lea. With his Mick Jagger style strut and his ability to connect with the crowd, the band seemed destined for success.

That success almost happened. The band got the opportunity to star in VH1’s reality competition show Bands on the Run, and even went on to win the competition. Epic Records re-released their debut album, Welcoming Home the Astronauts, with some new tracks and some re-recorded tracks. The album failed to perform to expectations, and they were dropped from Epic Records. The band has maintained a highly loyal local following, almost always selling out any show they perform.

I was disappointed to learn that the band is now breaking up. Flickerstick has announced the dates for their final shows. The last Dallas show will be January 24th at House of Blues. The band will play two farewell shows on February 27th and the 28th at Aardvark, which I believe is the first venue the band ever played. The band will probably play for about two hours for each performance, which I hope will allow time for some cover songs (“Fade into You”, “Black Metallic”) and some more obscure favorites (“Execution by X-Mas Lights”). Tickets will go on sale for these shows this Friday, and I would count on all of these shows selling out. The band is known for their energetic live performances, and I think it is safe to say that Flickerstick will go out with a bang and not a whimper.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Update on the Anju Gill Fall Megabill

As you may have noticed this morning, it's kinda cold outside. Originally, there were going to be two stages of entertainment at tonight's Club Dada show: outdoors and indoors. Therefore, all the entertainment has been moved inside (big shocker, I know). It will be interesting, to say the least, to see how well the bands can stick to the schedule, which is as follows:

7:00 - acoustic girl
7:45 - The Dark Knights of Camelot
8:30 - Sparklepussy Barbie
9:15 - Dave Little Meltdown
10:00 - Tonite Tonite
10:45 - the cut*off
11:30 - The Slack
12:15 - I Love Math
1:00 - Salim Nourallah & The Noise

By the way, this will be Tonite Tonite's farewell show, so I would encourage everyone to get there in time to see Tonite Tonite's last show tonight. Lead singer Andres Negrete will be starting a new band starting next year, and I will be sure to give you all the details. See you tonight!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Weekend Review: 11/14/08

Note: I'm sure this is hardly a comprehensive guide to shows this weekend. These are just a few of the best bets I know off the top of my head. Hope this helps.

Olospo/THe BAcksliders (Club Dada)
I must confess that I don't enjoy Olospo near as much as Chris Holt's current project, The Slack. I'm not as much of a fan of the jam band stylings of Olospo. Nevertheless, the absurd level of talent held by Chris Holt is enough to make any project of his interesting and entertaining. And as usual, THe BAcksliders will rock, just like they do every show. I wonder if THe BAcksliders ever get bored with rocking and kicking musical butt with every show. Who knows?
Del Castillo/Blue Petal (Palace Theater in Grapevine)
I was much impressed with this venue when I saw Rahim Quazi and Jimmy LaFave play there several weekends ago. Del Castillo is an artist I know by name only, but I can always recommend Blue Petal. Their sound seems to be shifting, going less from the sweet acoustic vibe to almost a more rocking sound with strong hints of sensuality in lead singer Manya's vocals. Check them out to see how good (or not good) my current Blue Petal description is.
Boys Named Sue (Allgood Cafe)
Sorry, I can't think of anything to say on BNS that hasn't been said already. It's good redneck fun, and I'll leave it at that.

Anju Gill Fall Mega-Bill (Club Dada)
Read my post, Remembering Anju, for details. A few things I left out previously: Dave Little and Sparklepussy Barbie are among the entertainers, and the entertainment starts somewhere between 8:30 and 9:00, depending on the source. This is my vote for show of the weekend, and this is where I'll be.
The O's, AM Ramblers, Jason Bonner (City Tavern)
Easily the best new band of the year, The O's ,with their minimal musical set-up, have created one of the richest sounds of any band I've heard in awhile. This may only be a duo, but there is nothing lacking in their sound. And no, this is not another White Stripes wannabe duo, but rather a country duo that is more reminiscent of Everly Brothers, if I were to be forced to make a comparison to another duo. AM Ramblers have been on my list of bands to see, and from what I've heard of them, they'll fit perfectly on the lineup with the O's. It will be interesting to hear how BAckslider Jason Bonner will mesh with the rest of the lineup. It's a shame that I'll be missing this show.
Bridges & Blinking Lights/The Boom Boom Box/Cocky Americans (Double-Wide)
Cocky Americans, unlike The O's, remain on the "Best Band I'll Miss Out On" (O's are now disqualified since I've seen them). I haven't seen Boom Boom Box, but the bands feature members of Baboon, Pleasant Grove, and PiNKSTON, so I'm sure I've at least seen all the members of the band playing, even if I haven't seen them together.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Remembering Anju

It was the summer of 2004 when I met Anju Gill at an Old 97's show at the former Gypsy Tea Room. We hit it off instantly, which should be no surprise, as few people share the level of intense love of local music as either of us. We continued to see each other at shows, and I always welcomed her company. It was always a joy to see her, more so than with most people. With Anju, when she spoke to you, it was never out of polite duty. I always sensed that she was a very genuine person, interested not just in the usual chit-chat about music and such, but about the well-being of myself or whoever else she was talking to.

Fast forward almost to years later, to what seemed to be an average day of me surfing the web, specifically MySpace. I was looking at Jayme Nourallah's page and there was a banner that read "Anju we miss you". My first thought was that it was such a shame that she moved, but I wished her well. It had me curious, so I logged onto Anju's page. After reading the comments on her page, I came to the heartbreaking realization that Anju's departure was of a much more permanent nature. I never that she suffered from depression until it was too late; I learned this only after she committed suicide.

I wish I could say that Anju and I were genuinely close friends, but that wouldn't be true. So let me say something that is true: I always felt that if we had had more time, that we would have become friends. I deeply regret that I did not get to know her better. I regret even more that I didn't know what she was struggling with inside of herself. She was someone that in spite of the fact that we weren't that close, had I had an inkling of what she was going through, I would have been there for her in a heartbeat.

Since her death, the Anju Gill Foundation has been established. The purpose of this foundation is to provide support, recognition, and community for musicians in the form of sponsorship, generating awareness and by hosting and planning live events in which local artists can be recognized. This Saturday at Club Dada is Anju Gill Fall Megabill, with the $10 cover charge going towards the Anju Gill Foundation. Entertainment will be on both indoor and outdoor stages and the artist roster reads like a who's who of Dallas music. Salim Nourallah, I Love Math, the cut*off, The Slack, Tonite Tonite, and the cut*off are among the artists playing Saturday. On a sadly ironic note, indoor headliner I Love Math and outdoor headliner Salim Nourallah played a show together at Allgood Cafe about a month before Anju's death, and that was the last time I saw her. Perhaps if we're lucky, her spirit will be felt at Saturday's show.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A double dose of congratulations

I would like to thank Matt Morris, for showing that someone is interested in winning these contests. Actually, I should really thank Smile Smile for promoting this contest that I'm doing. Anyways, by naming "Waving the White Flag" in his email, he will get in Saturday night' show at Prophet Bar 100% free of charge.

Matt Morris isn't the only one who should be congratulated. Congratulations are in order for yours truly as well. Many of you know this already, but The Ghost is now engaged. No wedding date has been set yet, but I will let you know when my fiancee officially becomes Mrs. Ghost.

Here's Something to Smile Smile About

A few weeks ago, I held a ticket giveaway to see Jimmy LaFave and Rahim Quazi at the Palace Theater in Grapevine. Much to my dismay, no one won the contest even when I GAVE THE ANSWER to the trivia question in a blog entry. How depressing.

My readers, you have an opportunity to redeem yourselves. The fine people at Kirtland Records were kind enough to give me a pair of tickets to the Prophet Bar this Saturday to see The Bun To Your Hot Dog Tour. No, I don't know who came up with that goofy name. The tour features XO (members of Say Anything), Paper Mache, Shanti, and Dallas' own Smile Smile. I don't know anything about the first three bands listed, but I do know that Smile Smile is a great local band that doesn't play around these parts often enough. I've been listening to their CD Blue Roses a lot lately, and it's a gorgeous CD that's half melancholy, half uplifting, and all talent.

So, who wants to see Smile Smile Saturday night? If you want to see Smile Smile, here's what you have to do. Send me an email at that includes your name and you have to mention the name of one song off of Blue Roses in the email. The first person to do that wins a pair of spots on the guest list. By the way, I'm not certain, but I believe the Prophet Bar is 18+, so don't try to win if you can't get in. Good luck, and someone win these tickets please. It hurts my fragile ego when nobody even tries to win.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Something Sorta Amazing Is About to Happen

A couple of weeks ago, when mentioning Trey Johnson’s show at Allgood Café, I said it would be a “nice warmup for the show I’m looking most forward to this month.” That show arrives tonight at the House of Blues Cambridge Room as Sorta holds their long overdue CD Release Party for their new CD, simply entitled Sorta. Buttercup from San Antonio and “Best Band I’ll Miss Out On” nominees The O’s will open for the band. Cover is $15, and everyone who pays to get in receives the new Sorta disc free of charge.

This is a particularly exciting show, since this will be the first time the band has played in over a year. Many of the members of Sorta have kept themselves quite busy. Chris Holt not only has his own band, The Slack, but also plays on a regular basis with Salim Nourallah, Johnny Lloyd Rollins, and I’m sure there’s a project or five that I’m leaving out. Bassist Danny Balis is now a full time member of the King Bucks. Ward Williams packed his bags earlier this year in order to move to Nashville. The band has recently started rehearsing again to prepare for the show. It will be interesting to hear how the members sound now.

What most audience members will be focusing on, however, isn’t what is on stage, but rather what is missing from the stage. Without the musical talents of Carter Albrecht on stage, the band will not just sound incomplete, they will be incomplete. There will be no incredible keyboard solo on “Hospitals and Sex” or “85 Feet”, nor will he be wailing on guitar during “Fallinlove” or any of the other Sorta classics. The only void larger than the one left in this band is the void left in the hearts of those who had the privilege of knowing the man.

I’m sure this show will have more than its share of sadness and tears. The band, just like Carter himself, was cut short in its prime. Sorta should have been one more step in the evolution of the band rather than the final album. In spite of the sadness and loss, however, this show offers fans an opportunity to both say goodbye and celebrate the music of Sorta. And it allows another opportunity to celebrate the beautiful life of Carter Albrecht.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Sound of Silence

Want to know what's really annoying? Being without sound on my computer. Apparently, I need to purchase a new sound card for my computer. Alas, money is something I'm always short on these days, so that may have to wait until next month, and perhaps even later. We'll see.

This is particularly annoying since two of my favorite local bands have posted new tracks that I haven't heard yet, and cannot hear until the sound card is installed. "Devil's Basement" is a new track from Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights. I have a feeling this will be one of the tracks on their upcoming Atlantic Records release. The other track is "That's How We Do Christmas" from THe BAcksliders. Admittedly, it's a tad early to be listening to Christmas music. Even so, the track is available for free download thru both and Reverb Nation. That way, you can download now, and listen once the holiday spirit moves you.

Just a random thought here: earlier this year I said JT&NL might well be the best live band in Dallas, but over the summer I changed my mind to THe BAcksliders. I think the best way to determine which band is best live would be for both acts to play together for a Ghost of Blind Lemon Showcase Showdown. Any takers for this idea?

Friday, October 17, 2008

An EXTREMELY brief look at Friday Shows

Don't have long, so I'm just giving the 3 best show options for tonight. I'm sure I'm leaving out some good stuff. Oh well.

Jimmy LaFave/Rahim Quazi (Palace Theatre)
For the record, I still haven't had ANYONE answer the trivia question to receive free tickets to this show. It's a shame, because you don't want to miss out on Rahim playing songs from his new CD, Supernatural (hint hint). I'm excited to see him play, as well as seeing this venue.
Lovie/El Gato/Happy Bullets (Club Dada)
I'm not sure of the order of the lineup. I do know, however, that this is the last show of Lovie's with Grace on drums. Fans of Lovie should make this a priority show.
Mucca Pazza/Dove Hunter/Mount Righteous/Telegraph Canyon/Stumptone/Baby Dee (Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth)
Here's something for those who like a little culture with their rock n' roll. Dove Hunter is one of the most impressive live bands around, and Telegraph Canyon aren't too shabby either. Haven't seen Mount Righteous or Stumptone yet, but word of mouth on both is impressive. Easily worth the $15 admission.

Feel free to post comments telling me about the shows I forgot to list. Honestly, it won't hurt my feelings.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I Heard It Through the Grapevine (Part II)

A thought occurred to me. Yes, sure I can show you pictures and talk about the Palace Theatre. What might be more effective, however, would be to let you SEE the theater with your own eyes. I have been generously granted a pair of tickets to give away for Friday night's show with Jimmy LaFave and Rahim Quazi & The Supernaturals.

So how can you get these tickets? It's simple. The first person to email me at with the correct answer to the following question gets the tickets:

What is the name of the album that Rahim Quazi released earlier this year?

Come on, if you've been reading my blog, this is a gimme. A no-brainer. Easy as pie.

Be sure to include your first and last name in the email, along with the answer to said question. Good luck to you all!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I Heard It through the Grapevine (Palace Theatre, That Is)

I’ll be completely honest: when I think of areas in the metroplex for seeing local music, the city of Grapevine isn’t exactly at the top of my list. The first thing that enters my mind when mentioning the city’s name is Grapevine Mills Mall. Granted, the Glass Cactus does book plenty of cover bands and even the occasional flashback touring band, but that’s not really my cup of tea.

Well, my viewpoints on Grapevine and music are getting a severe makeover. If you’ve been paying attention to my blog in recent days, you have heard me making mention of the Palace Theatre in Grapevine. Rahim Quazi, both one of my favorite musicians and human beings, is responsible for breathing life into the theater. He is the one responsible for the theater’s Sounds of Texas concert series. To quote Mr. Quazi, he is “so excited to be a part of creating a quality music experience and introducing this gem of a theater to Dallas and Fort Worth.”

The Sound of Texas concert series began last Friday, with a show featuring Bob Schneider and Johnny Lloyd Rollins. For each show, a major Texas artist headlines the show, and a local favorite opens. This week’s show features Mr. Quazi himself opening up for Jimmy LaFave. You can also check out Del Castillo and Blue Petal on November 14th.

So while Grapevine may not have much of a music scene right now, the Palace is definitely a step towards the creation of one. Between the quality of music being booked and the beauty of the theater (just look at the photos below), this venue could not only satisfy the musical cravings of those in Grapevine, but also draw people in from all around the metroplex area. Since it seems that it is becoming harder and harder to find quality music in these parts, you just find that it’s worth the drive to check this place out.

Random Musings

It seems as if there are not enough hours in the day for me to report on the local music stories that are worth talking about. Here are random blips that almost got lost in the shuffle.

You probably know this already, but congratulations go out to Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights, who were recently signed to Atlantic Records. My only complaint: instead of using the great Ghost of Blind Lemon blog to break the story, they instead opted to tell Dallas Observer first. Guys, you’re breaking my heart here. I think the band at least owes me some free press passes for the oversight. Just kidding, but if the band wants to get me in free, I won’t turn it down.

Another band deserving of some congrats is Somebody’s Darling. They recently won a Battle of the Bands competition sponsored by Shiner Bock. If memory serves correctly, the band won studio time to record their next CD, and I also believe they will be signed to Shiner Records. I’ve been saying for about a year that this band will hit it big; it appears my predictions were correct.

THe BAcksliders are top 10 finalists in a Battle of the Bands (sponsored by Teen Vogue magazine) exclusively for bands with female leads. The top three bands will play off against each other in New York City, and the winner will be signed to Wicked Cool Records. This is just my belief here, but I think that if THe BAcksliders can just make it to the top three, they can easily annihilate any other band they’d play against. Click here for the link to vote for the band.

I also wanted to make a quick mention of two different series of shows that deserve further attention. One is Sounds of Texas at the Palace Theater in Grapevine, and the other is an acoustic music series hosted by yours truly at the Dunn Brothers Coffee location at LBJ & Dallas North Tollway. You’ll be hearing more about both sets of shows in the very, very near future. Keep checking back here to find out all the juicy details.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Weekend Oversight on My Part

I mentioned that Macon Greyson is playing at Adair's on Friday Night. What I forgot to mention is that the band always plays BOTH nights of the Texas/OU weekend at Adair's. If you missed out last night, come tonight. If you went last night, well, you can see them again. Just thought everyone should know that.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Texas/OU Weekend Review

Here’s the bad news: our fine city is about to be invaded by a bunch of Okies who are under the mistaken impression that OU are superior to the University of Texas. Here’s the good news: since the bars, clubs, and other music venues like taking the money of both UT and OU fans, you can always count on some killer shows this weekend. Here’s a little peak at some of the musical mayhem occurring this weekend.

Macon Greyson (Adair’s)
I discovered this band in 2004, right before their first weekend of Texas/OU shows at Adair’s. Since then, it has been my tradition to attend at least one of the two shows they put on during this weekend. If cheap pitchers of Shiner Bock and great alt-country with a heavy dose of rock are your cup of tea (or beer), then you cannot find a better show for your money.
Bob Schneider/Johnny Lloyd Rollins (Palace Theater)
Rahim Quazi, one of my favorite local musicians, has begun a series of killer shows at the Palace Theater where he pairs a major Texas musician (Bob Schneider in this case) with a major local music act (this time, Johnny Lloyd Rollins). While I have not had the opportunity to visit the venue, if the interior of the theater matches the charm of the exterior, then this venue is worth the drive no matter where you reside in the metroplex.
Airline/Flat People/Here, In Arms (Double-Wide)
You know something I hate in a lineup? Fat. Fat is when you have an act in a lineup that is not worth listening to. Fat is the band that you spend your time at the bar instead of by the stage. Double-Wide is presenting a fat-free lineup. Whether it be the soulful countryesque vibe of Here, In Arms, the Neil Young meets Radiohead’s The Bends stylings of Flat People, or the ambitious rock sound of Airline, this lineup is 100% fat free. That’s a good thing for anyone’s musical diet.
Theater Fire/Kristina Morland (Lee Harvey’s)
You probably understand the brilliance of Theater Fire. Not to many people are familiar with either Ms. Morland or her album Pidgin Music. She is probably my favorite discovery of the year. If you were one of the handful of people who arrived at the GOBL anniversary show in time to see her set, you get where I’m coming from. Please, Theater Fire fans, do not make the mistake of arriving late.
Southern Drive/Kristy Kruger (City Tavern)
I know nothing about Southern Drive, but Kristy’s playing with a full band. That’s reason enough to go.
Eleven Hundred Springs (Granada Theater)
It’s only a matter of time before you start hearing the phrase “I was into Eleven Hundred Springs before they became big time.” If you haven’t seen them yet but want to be able to say that, now would be a good time to see them play.

Patrice Pike/THe BAcksliders (Dan’s Silverleaf)
Jason Bonner may have recently left THe BAcksliders, but he’ll be celebrating his birthday with his brother Chris and the rest of the BAcksliders. Sure, Patrice Pike is playing, but you and I both know that the night will belong to THe BAcksliders.
Astronautilus/Sarah Jaffe/Picnictyme, Info Red (Double-Wide)
I'm a little confused here... is Sarah's next project going to be a hip-hop album? She certainly seems to be odd woman out on the lineup. Either way, both hip-hop and Jaffe fans should enjoy this lineup.
The Liking Strikes/Southbound Lane/Greyhounds (Lakewood Bar & Grill)
I will probably miss out on this show, which will help Liking Strikes maintain their status as “One of the Best Band I’ll Miss Out On”. But seriously, I’m not sure how much longer I can hold back.
RTB2/Smile Smile/Sunward/Young And Brave (Hailey’s)It’s not often that Hailey’s holds an evening of such fine music that’s all local. It is, nevertheless, a pleasant treat, especially for those in Denton craving fine Dallas music.
Trey Johnson and Friends (AllGood Café)
This will be a nice warmup for the show I’m looking most forward to this month. More details on that later…
Kristy Kruger/The Beaten Sea (Opening Bell Coffee, Mosaic)
For years, Pascale from Opening Bell has talked to me with such enthusiasm about the debut of the second Opening Bell location. The dream is now a reality, and this show marks the official grand opening of this new location in Downtown Dallas. Kristy will play again with a full band, and The Beaten Sea will open. Beaten Sea played at Kristy’s benefit for Mojo, and put on a very impressive set for a band so newly formed. Time and experience is sure to only make the set even better.
Salim Nourallah/Vanessa Peters (Opening Bell Coffee, South Side on Lamar)
Just in case you’re worried that the Mosaic OBC is going to steal all the thunder from the original, booking Salim should soothe the minds of any doubters.

Have fun this weekend, and remember: friends don’t let friends drive drunk. They also don’t let friends cheer on OU. Go Longhorns!!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

The Best Band I Will Miss Out On

Before Pete Freedman took on his role as music editor for the Dallas Observer, the paper published an article where various people gave advice to the then future music editor. One of the contributors made the suggestion “don’t get in a relationship.” The reasoning was that by getting in a relationship, it would distract focus from the local music scene, and that one great band would come and go that he would have totally missed out on.

Here’s the reason I bring this up. Those of you who know me personally are aware that I have recently entered a relationship. I have found a woman that makes me genuinely happy and I am deliriously in love. I must confess, however, that this new relationship has distracted me from my blogging, as you may have gathered from my infrequent posts.

(For the record, work and financial stresses have also distracted me, so if anyone knows how I can blog full time for a living, my ears are wide open.)

Back to my original point, however. There are some great bands out about town that at the rate I’m going, I seem destined to never get to see. I figured I’d throw out a few nominees for The Best Band I Will Miss Out On. These are bands that I have every reason to believe are quality acts, but for some reason, I seem to keep missing shows by said acts.

Here are just a few potential nominees:

The Liking Strikes
They seem to be a particularly fitting place to start, since I was supposed to check them out the night of my first date with my girlfriend. Their sound leans very heavily on the pop side of things, but don’t let that scare you off. Songs like “Stupid Girl” (no relation to the Garbage song) are so dang catchy that even the most pretentious indie rock hipster will be unable to shake it out of his or her head. Word of mouth has it that they put on a mean acoustic set as well. Electric or non-electric, this is one band I hope gets moved over to the “seen” category very soon.

The O’s
Here’s what you need to know about the O’s. It features Taylor Young and John Pedigo. If you don’t know who those two musicians are, you need to get out more often. A lot will be expected of this duo, considering the fact that both artists seem incapable of being in a bad band. In fact, both musicians are talented enough that they could make a sucky band sound good. So while a lot will be expected from The O’s, I have no reason to believe they will do anything other than live up to the promise, and maybe even surpass it.

Cocky Americans
They say you can learn a lot about a person by the company they keep. Wonder if the same holds true for bands? If so, then Cocky Americans are in excellent shape. In recent months, they’ve played with Rahim Quazi, Somebody’s Darling, and the aforementioned Liking Strikes. They’re also playing at the Cavern this Friday with Fate Lions, another great band that I’ve been missing out on long before the GF. Oh, and the band makes good music. Can’t forget that detail.

The band has used the phrase “acoustic shoegaze sound” in regards to their music. That would be a very dead on description. Imagine if Nick Drake was resurrected and became the front man for Lush for their first few CD’s, and that’s a good start for describing Menkena. I can’t promise how this will translate live, as neither Nick Drake nor pretty much any shoegaze band has had much in the way of stage presence. If the music can remain as beautiful onstage as it sounds recorded, however, this band definitely is worth checking out.

If you know of any great bands that you think I am missing out on, don’t be shy. Post a comment and let me know. Maybe I might even catch one of the bands you recommend. Granted, they can no longer be in the running for “Best Band I Will Miss Out On”, but I always prefer seeing good bands to missing out on good bands. I’m just funny that way.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

For Those About To Download, We Salute You

For those who are friends with THe BAcksliders on MySpace, you've probably noticed that they have been offering up free downloads right before they play a major gig in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Tomorrow night they play at the Fairmount, along with Goodwin and the cut*off (one of my absolute favorite bands in Dallas). So this week, they have offered up their song "Wedding Day" as the free download.

Obviously, I would encourage you to download the song if you don't have their CD, You're Welcome, yet. More importantly, I hope it encourages you to make it to the show. They performed at my GOBL showcase this past year. While I watched their set, I remembered that in March of this year, I said that Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights might be the best live band in Dallas. After THe BAcksliders finished their set, I was ready to retract my statement. And by the way, congrats go out to JT&NL, who were just picked up by Atlantic Records. But here's a thought for any record execs reading this blog: THe BAcksliders, unlike JT&NL, are unsigned... for now. Just trying to give some food for thought to any record company bigwigs in need of a great new band to sign. That's all.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Hurricane, Shmurricane… How About Some Good Shows?

Thanks, Crazy Jeff, for the not to subtle reminder that I need to blog more. I have more interesting things planned for some future entries, but for now, here are a few cool show ideas. Remember: you are in Dallas, not Houston. We may get some nasty weather as a side effect of Ike, but while I am not a meteorologist, I suspect it will not be so bad that you can’t make it to a show. Speaking of shows, here are a few recommendations.

Method Mayhem BBQ (Club Dada)
I don’t know what impact the weather will have on the barbecue part of the show, but I do know that most of the bands originally slated to play are still on the lineup. Out of towners Records Record Records and Deadman both had to bail, but everyone else on the original lineup remains. Almost every artist on the lineup I have seen and have nothing but great things to say. While I haven’t seen The O’s, who kick off the show at 4:00 pm, I cannot imagine anything but great things from the duo of Taylor Young (THe BAcksliders, The Hundred Inevitables) and John Pedigo (Boys Named Sue, Rose County Fair). Greatness seems to be the only logical conclusion with such a pairing.

The Tah-Dah’s, Laura Palmer (Amsterdam Bar)
This is it. The Tah-Dah’s are over. Done. Finished. After tonight, they become yet another band in the graveyard of great local bands that have come and gone. But knowing Roy Ivy and the rest of his bandmates, they will not go down quietly. Expect loud music, mayhem, drunkenness, and other forms of joyous celebration.

The Farstar, Ella Minnow, Clay & The Electronic Cowboys (City Tavern)
The only band on the lineup I’ve seen is The Farstar. They are one of those rare bands that has the potential to appeal equally to both the indie-rock music aficionado crowd as well as the Curtain Club crowd (where they headlined last night). I know, you’re skeptical, but if you give these guys a listen, I suspect you will not be disappointed. All I know of Ella Minnow is the song “Quick and Clean”, which has quickly become one of my favorite tracks to listen to while on I still haven’t seen Clay perform yet. I will make it to a show eventually. I promise. Based on what I’ve heard online, I’m sure it will be a pleasurable show.
SPUNE Back to School Show (Lola’s)
I don’t know many bands on the lineup, but Somebody’s Darling and Macon Greyson are reason enough to go. If you’re lucky, perhaps SD will have copies of their EP available for sale. If not, go check them out tomorrow at The Cavern. If you get there before 7:30, you get a free CD with price of admission. Sweet, huh?
2nd Annual Blind Lemon Blues Festival (Poor David’s Pub)
I’ll be honest, I don’t know any of the blues musicians playing the show. Still, there’s something about the name of the festival that I find quite appealing. It’s hard to put my finger on it though.

Please, if you do go to any of these shows, drive carefully. Hurricane Ike may not be in Dallas, but there will be plenty of nasty weather to contend with out on the roads. And of course, bad weather brings out all the idiot drivers. Just be safe. I want to see your smiling faces at many more great shows

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Somebody’s Darling Is Having a Birthday

No, I don’t mean somebody’s sweetheart or someone’s girlfriend or anything like that. I am of course referring to the Dallas band Somebody’s Darling, one of the many great artists who took the stage last Saturday at Dada. It turns out that one year ago today, the band held its very first show ever at Green Elephant. The fact that the band is a mere one year old is pretty overwhelming to me. I know many bands that have been together for years that struggle to get a fraction of both the audience and the talent that SD already possesses.

If you want to wish them a happy birthday, go check them out at House of Blues tonight. They will open up for He Wears Black, a Johnny Cash tribute band. This will not be in the little Pontiac Garage (formerly the Cambridge Room), but in the main venue. By the way, HOB, way to go on featuring local acts on bills for two nights in a row. Let’s see more of that local action coming our way.

Tickets for the event can be purchased for as little as $12. Enjoy that price. If Somebody’s Darling keeps rising in popularity as quickly as they have in their first year, you may see them headlining at House of Blues for a whole lot more money. See them now while you can, and if you see a band members hanging around, buy them a beer and wish them a happy birthday.

Oh, and of course, tell them “The Ghost” says hi.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Weekend Update: 8/8/08

Before I give you the list of cool shows going on this weekend, let me just take a quick moment to thank Club Dada for letting me host my showcase, and also thank all the artists who played and everyone who attended. I was proud to be a part of such a wonderful show, and I cannot wait to host another show.

OK, it’s time to shift from last weekend to this weekend. We’ve got a few sweet shows coming up, so take a look and find (at least) one that appeals to you.

Black Tie Dynasty/The Burning Hotels/the cut*off/Hendrick (House of Blues)
At last week’s GOBL Anniversary Showcase, I introduced all the bands, but I feel like I did not give the cut*off the introduction they so deserved. That is a shame, because the cut*off in the period of a few years have gone from an average grunge influenced band to becoming one of the true shining stars in the local music scene. The Rorschach EP showed a strong hint of their potential, and Packaged Up for Beginners cashes in on that potential. Between smart, insightful lyrics created by lead vocalist Kyle Barnhill and top notch production values by the incomparable Salim Nourallah, their new CD is perfect for both beginners and advanced cut*off fans. On a separate note, it’s good to see House of Blues showcase a solid lineup of all local talent.
Boys Named Sue/The Hundred Inevitables (Allgood Café)
Congrats to Mike Snider and Allgood, for eight great years of food and music. The evening starts with everyone’s favorite redneck band, Boys Named Sue. Following that, the Lolli Dollies will be invading, and music will be provided by The Hundred Inevitables. Here are the two things you need to know about the band: they play killer power-pop in the vain of Big Star, and they don’t play very often. I wouldn’t be surprised if Hundred Inevitables don’t play another show this year. You have been forewarned.
Pikahsso and Tahiti/Headkrack/Genova (The Cavern)
The second P (as in Piknik) may be gone from PPT, but both Pikahsso and Tahiti can still rock the mic just fine sans Piknik, as shown by their set together at Sugar Shack for the DOMA Showcase. If you’re a hip-hop fan, I doubt there’s a better place to be.
The Theater Fire (Lee Harvey’s)
OK, how much longer until the follow-up to Everybody Has a Dark Side? Hey, at least they’re doing some shows now.

I Wanna Be A Robot: A Benefit for Shaky Amy (Club Dada)
I pity Fishing For Comets, who will be playing the outdoors stage at 5:30. That’s not gonna be pretty. Seriously though, the only flaw with the lineup is that there is TOO much good music to be packed into such a short period of time. Highlights besides FFC will include Sunward, The Felons, Lovie, and what may be one of the last Tah Dah’s shows ever. There’s too much for me to talk about, so click here for all the details.
Here, In Arms/Les Americains/Christian Brooks Band/The Istics/Erik Castillo (Prophet Bar)
I finally got the opportunity to see Here, In Arms a little over a month ago. I expected the band to be good, but what I heard was amazing. Brent Engel has found a way to produce a sound fusing the best of 60’s and 70’s rock with a certain flair that makes the music sound soulful, although not soul music per se. It’s intense, and I anxiously await the full length CD from this band. Last minute edit: I just got an email telling me that Les Americains features members of [DARYL] and Macavity. Makes the lineup even more promising.
The Theater Fire/Ralph White and Places (Dan’s Silverleaf)
I’m not sure if Places is Mr. White’s backup band or a separate act. Either way, it’s a second opportunity to see Theater Fire in one week plus what is sure to be the best show this weekend in Denton.

Friday, August 1, 2008

A Time to Reflect

One year ago today, I posted my first blog entry, giving birth to The Ghost of Blind Lemon so to speak. A friend of mine planted idea of starting a blog about the local music scene about a month before hand. I initially rejected the idea, but as time went on, I became more frustrated with the direction that the scene had taken. There were only two options: sit around and complain, or try to do something about it. As a result, I created this site in hopes of creating a place where people could be informed about the local music scene and find a way to take part in it by supporting both the bands and the venues.

When I decided I wanted to start the site, the first person I talked to was Cindy Chaffin of Texas Gigs and Fine Line fame. I was saddened to learn last week that she was giving up The Fine Line in order to pursue other endeavors. I have yet to get the opportunity to talk to Cindy about her decision, but I wish her the best of luck in whatever she pursues. When I started, The Fine Line was one of many major blogs about the local music scene. However, much in the way the scene has been hard on bands and venues, it has also been a rough year for the blogs. Boca Tinta went by the wayside earlier this year, and Big D Little D posts so rarely that it might as well be considered dead. Now without Fine Line, that pretty much leaves We Shot JR, Adventures in Live Music, A History of Dallas Music, and me.

I will admit that over the past few months, my output has been irregular at best and infrequent at worst. There have been many things distracting me in the past few months; some are good (like the relationship I am currently in) and some are not (financial stresses). The end of Fine Line, however, has served as something of a wake-up call. It seems that my services are needed more than ever. I am not saying this out of any sense of ego. I am by no means the best one to act as any sort of spokesperson for the Dallas music scene. I do, however, seem to be one of the last ones standing in the local music blogosphere.

This seems to bring me back to that same crossroads I was at last year. I can sit around and complain, or try to do something about it. I can either surrender to the fact that the local music scene is dead, or I can fight to give it life. I can either turn my back on promising new artists like Kristina Morland, The Felons, Binary Sunrise, Elle, The Liking Strikes, and many others, or I can try to help them find the audiences they so deserve. I can either remember the glory days of Deep Ellum, or I can go to shows at Club Dada, Prophet Bar, Sons of Hermann, and any other Deep Ellum venue that supports quality music. As far as I’m concerned, there is only one option.

Okay, okay, I’ll step down off of my soapbox now. Let’s end on a happy note, and there is not much that brings me greater pleasure than the idea of my 1 Year Anniversary show this Saturday at Dada. I have been fortunate enough to bring together eight excellent artists that show everything that is going right with the local music scene. I could easily type for several more pages about the brilliance of each of these artists and why they are so deserving of a spot on the lineup, or I can just tell you that you need to come to Dada Saturday night. I hope you will join me in this celebration of my blog, and more importantly, in the celebration of the scene.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Some Good Buys Indeed

This weekend, Kettle Art will open an exhibition called Good Buy. It will feature various band-related art that has been hanging in some Deep Ellum clubs for the past few decades. Just look below to see a sample of some of the works available for purchase.

The exhibition begins this Saturday, the same night as my anniversary show. The gallery will be open from 7-10 pm, so feel free to leave the show (momentarily of course) and see what's for sale. Oh, and if anyone feels like buying me an early birthday gift of the autographed Old 97's poster, I would not object. Really, it wouldn't bother me at all.

P.S. It seems that blogger only allows stationary photos, so click on the Kettle Art link to get a better view of all the art for sale.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Some Big and Crazy News

First, let me tell you the big news. Those of you who know me personally have probably heard me talk about the showcase I’m holding at Club Dada this Saturday in honor of the one year anniversary of GOBL. I am proud to FINALLY announce the official lineup of the show.

6:45 Kristina Morland
7:30 American Werewolf Academy
8:15 Rahim Quazi (solo)
9:00 The Felons
10:00 the cut*off
11:00 THe BAcksliders
12:00 Rose County Fair
1:00 Somebody's Darling

The cover is $10, and considering both the quantity and quality of bands, that’s simply a steal. Spread the word and tell your friends about this show.

Now comes the crazy news. Actually, it’s news about the Crazy Jeff Show. I met Jeff at THe BAcksliders CD Release show, and he’s definitely one cool guy. He’s recording a live podcast tonight with very special guest Sean Kirkpatrick. Word on the street is that Mr. Kirkpatrick is going to debut some brand spankin’ new songs on the show. Isn’t that reason enough to listen?

If you think the answer to that question is “no”, then seek immediate psychiatric help. That is reason enough to listen to the show, but I still have one more reason for you to tune in. Jeff interviewed me earlier today, and that interview will be part of the podcast. We’ll be talking about my showcase on Saturday among other topics. The live broadcast begins at 9:00. What else are you going to do tonight, watch repeats of Without a Trace? This is so much cooler.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Sample This!!!

I met Jason and Jennifer Manriquez several years ago at the old Barley House during a Deathray Davies show. We very quickly bonded over our love of both Deathray Davies as well as the local music scene. They ran a little fanzine called Sample Press. This was back before I had regular internet access, and it was the first time I had seen a publication that showed such a true passion for the local music scene.

As time went by, Sample Press quit making new issues. Well, in recent months, not only has the Sample Press website been resurrected, but they have published their first issue in about two years. The zine has some expanded their focus, including poetry, short fiction, art, theater, and reviews of other zines, but the devotion to the local music scene is still in full tact. If you want your own copy of Sample Press (and after all, why wouldn't you?), then go to the Sample Press website, send a donation (it is a non-profit zine after all), and the July 2008 issue can be all yours. Oh, and it's worth noting that my review of Rahim Quazi's Supernatural CD was reprinted in the issue. Sure, you've probably read it on this site, but let that show the love I have for Sample Press. Only Sample Press has gotten permission to reprint my articles.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Forgive Me If I Rant, But It Has Been Awhile

I got an email last week from Chris Bonner (THe BAcksliders). It was a pretty simple email saying “Hope everything is going well for you. Miss your blogs.” I must admit that as the summer has come, I have become exceptionally bad about writing on a regular basis. It’s ironic, as I have far more free time over the summer to write than during the rest of the year. Unfortunately, this summer has not been kind to my bank account, and stress over finances among other things has distracted me from making regular blog entries.

A lot has happened during this past month that has come and gone without me giving the events the attention they deserve. One such event is the demise of Red Blood Club. My experience with the club is extremely limited. Most of the music performed there is much heavier than what I personally prefer to listen to. But while Red Blood Club did not cater to my personal music tastes, I still find its closing to be very troubling. Our city is at a point where the selection for live music venues is becoming more and more limited. And for those whose music taste leaned more towards punk, metal, and other forms of hardcore music, the loss of Red Blood leaves a chasm in the local music scene. Even worse, I am not sure that there is a club equipped to “fill the shoes” of Red Blood, so to speak. And like I said, while I did not particularly care for the music played there, I do care about Dallas music, and the local music scene is not a vacuum. Anytime that one part of the local music scene has a loss, its effect will reverberate through the rest of the scene.

Our scene is also experiencing certain musical losses too. In the past month, I have learned of the end of two great bands: PPT and The Tah Dah’s. I only had the privilege of seeing PPT perform on less than a handful of occasions, but the collective skill of all the members behind the mic never ceased to amaze me. Fortunately, while the band itself is gone, I have no doubt that the remaining members will manage to put forth some mind-blowing solo releases. Still, it’s a shame. As for the Tah Dah’s, while the band is still together, this will not be the case for long. My understanding is that Roy is leaving Dallas, and that the group will likely play its last show in August. In a MySpace bulletin posted by lead vocalist Roy Ivy, he goes on about how the local music scene is dead, and how it has been dead for a long time.

With all due respect to Mr. Ivy, I must strongly disagree with his position. I’m not going to lie and say that everything is sunshine and roses here in the metroplex. The music scene is hurting for many reasons. One of the most obvious problems facing the scene is the lack of venues here. In the past few years, we have lost Trees, Club Clearview, Red Blood Club, and Gypsy Tea Room, and that’s just for starters. The state of the national economy is also playing a part in the problems facing our scene. In times of economic crisis, people cut back on the nonessentials, and to most people, seeing local bands would be classified as a nonessential.

Yes, the local music scene has seen far better times than now. Still, it is way too premature to say that the scene is dead. You see, Dallas and its neighboring cities still have one weapon in their music arsenals: the musicians. Yes, the number of venues is down. Yes, there are far fewer record labels to promote bands than there were even five years ago. But the quality music is still here, begging to be listened to. In the past month, I have been blown away by performances by my first listens to Elle, Here, In Arms, Binary Sunrise, and Kristina Morland. And so far this year, CD’s by Rahim Quazi, Airline, Inner City All-Stars, Ms. Morland, and THe BAcksliders have all proven that there is first rate talent here in our metroplex. The question is, is anybody listening?

Well, are you?

Sunday, June 15, 2008 Playlist: 6/15/08

I'm doing an all female vocalist playlist this week in honor of the Can't Stop The Serenity musical showcase happening this Saturday from 5-8 pm at Barley House. The show will feature performances by Inner Frequency, Lovie, Camille Cortinas of Fishing For Comets, and Kristina Morland. Cover is $10, and the profits go to the charity Equality Now.

By the way, I forewarned for people to upload their music to, and since no one seemed to heed my warning, I not only followed through on the Jessica Simpson threat, but I added some LeAnn Rimes and Kelly Clarkson for good (or bad) measure. Next time, heed my advice more seriously.

  1. "Dream I Call You", Annie Benjamin

  2. "Pass on All Your Fears", THe BAcksliders

  3. "Move Along", Blue Petal

  4. "Peaches and Cream", Domestic Science Club

  5. "Good Vs. Evil", Eden Automatic

  6. "Circle", Edie Brickell and New Bohemians

  7. "Telescope Eyes", Eisley - By the way, I debated on whether to permit this song, since I don't usually regard Tyler as part of the D/FW Metroplex area. However, since most people seem to look at Eisley as a "Dallas" band, I let it slide. Besides, I was kinda desperate, and it beats a double dose of Ms. Simpson.
  8. "Garden of the Sun", Emily Elbert

  9. "On & On", Erykah Badu

  10. "Captured in This Frame", Fishing For Comets

  11. "Lies", Fishing For Comets - Since Camille is one of the artists playing, I figured I'd do a double dose of her music.

  12. "I Think I'm in Love with You", Jessica Simpson- Why John Mellencamp gave her permission to do this to "Jack and Diane" is beyond me.

  13. "Since U Been Gone", Kelly Clarkson - Yeah, yeah, yeah, act all pretentious and stuff and sneer at me for putting this on. You know you like it.

  14. "How Do I Live", LeAnn Rimes- This concludes the Top 40 segement of the playlist.

  15. "It's All Gone Wrong", Pennywhistle Park

  16. "The Quitter in Me", PiNKSTON

  17. "Poprox", Record Hop

  18. "Cigarette", Sara Radle

  19. "This Is a Test (Radio Edit)", Shock Of Pleasure

  20. "Sleep", Tree Wave

Oh, and I promise my readers to get more material out this week, and I also promise a major concert announcement coming soon.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Here's Your Show Recommendation, and You're Welcome

Is this the only show happening tonight? Of course not. I will say, however, that this show eclipses all other shows happening tonight. You know I love THe BAcksliders, and you know I love their new CD, You're Welcome. Needless to say, I will be right by the Double-Wide stage, enjoying the rock spectacle that is THe BAcksliders. If that isn't enough excitement for you, it's a double CD Release Party, as Dragna release their new CD tonight (sorry, I couldn't find a name for the disc). Binary Sunrise opens up the show, and I've been wanting to check this band out for quite some time. I hope to see a lot of familiar faces at the DW tonight. Feel free to come join me, buy yourself a CD, and while you're at it, feel free to buy me a drink as well!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen, May I Have Your Attention?

Yes, I have a special request for some of the female vocalists in Dallas. I am trying to create a playlist centered exclusively around female vocalists. The playlist will hopefully debut on June 15th. Why am I doing an all female playlist? It is in honor of the Can't Stop the Serenity benefit concert taking place on June 21st at Barley House. All profits from the evening go to Equality Now, an organization devoted to helping end discrimination and acts of violence towards women all over the world. The concert will include performances from Kristina Morland, Camille Cortinas (lead vocalist of Fishing for Comets), Lovie, and Inner Frequency. Of the four acts listed, only Fishing For Comet's music in part of the music catalog. I would STRONGLY encourage the other acts to upload their music to so that I can feature it on this and future playlists.

In addition, I'd like to list a few other acts, both female soloists and female fronted bands, whose music I would like to see on the website:

  • Becky Middleton

  • Kristin Leigh

  • Kristy Kruger

  • Lauren Gifford

  • The Liking Strikes

  • Romp Almighty

  • Sara Donaldson

  • Sarah Jaffe

  • Shiny Around the Edges

  • Somebody's Darling

This is by no means a comprehensive list, but rather a small sampling of some of the great female talent in Dallas. So please, if you're on this list, upload your music to The picking are a little slim, and if they don't get better, I may be reduced to putting Jessica Simpson on the playlist. You don't want that, do you?

Monday, June 2, 2008 Playlist: 6/2/08

A little late with the playlist, but better late than never, right? Between being sick and personal crap, I didn't feel like giving the usual commentary on each song. I'll just say a few quick things though. I put THe BAcksliders and Binary Sunrise on the playlist in honor of the CD Release Party for You're Welcome that will be on Friday night at Double-Wide. Also, if you haven't fallen in love with "Supernatural", either you haven't heard the song yet, or you are suffering from an acute case of lack of musical taste. Either way, you should be totally into that song. As for the others, well, all I can think to say is I like the songs, and that's enough said.

  1. "Wedding Day", THe BAcksliders

  2. "2005", Binary Sunrise

  3. "Bells", Black Tie Dynasty

  4. "The Basement Theory", the cut*off

  5. "Quick & Clean", Ella Minnow

  6. "Every Time I Get Close to You", Eleven Hundred Springs

  7. "All You Do Is Crazy", Fate Lions

  8. "Good Day!", The Happy Bullets

  9. "Some Bridges Are for Burning", I Love Math

  10. "Miss Sugar Pie", Johnny Lloyd Rollins

  11. "Fine Line", Macon Greyson

  12. "Never Had Control", Mur

  13. "Mockingbird", Nicholas Altobelli

  14. "The Quitter in Me", PiNKSTON

  15. "American Wierdo", PPT (Featuring Glen Reynolds)

  16. "Supernatural", Rahim Quazi

  17. "Slide Shows", Rose County Fair

  18. "Hang On", Salim Nourallah

  19. "Surround Me", Tim Miller

  20. "Sleep", Tree Wave

Friday, May 30, 2008

Just Because I'm Sick with a Cold...

Doesn't mean you shouldn't go to a show this weekend. Here are some cool options:


Macon Greyson, Sally Jaye, Brian Wright (Lakewood Bar & Grill) - Macon Greyson is one of Dallas' most underappreciated bands. Show them some love tonight.
Fate Lions, Ella, Anabella (Opening Bell Coffee) - Not only does Jason Manriguez help run the killer Sample Press, he has a nice little band called Fate Lions. How does he do it all?
The Fieros, Johnny Lloyd Rollins, Smile Smile, Binary Sunrise (Club Dada) - They started out as a Dallas band called The Valentines. Now not only has the name changed to The Fieros, their address is about to change. Before the band moves to Brooklyn, they say farewell to their hometown with a totally fabulous lineup. Farewell guys, you will be missed.


The essence of Saturday can be well captured by two words: Old 97's. They'll be playing that evening at House of Blues with Hayes Carll, and hopefully you already have your tickets, because the show is sold out. Maybe you'll luck out and find a scalper who will sell you a ticket for either a few hundred dollars or your first born. For those without the cash or first born, not to fear. Old 97's are doing an in-store performance at Good Records at 1:00 pm. I'd say the place would be packed in like a can of sardines, but it probably won't feel that spacious. Nevertheless, it's Old 97's, and it's free, so sweat it out and deal. And while you're there, if you don't have Blame It on Gravity, you can pick up a copy and learn all the songs before the show (if you have your tickets, that is). If you're looking for other options that don't involve Old 97's for Saturday, here you go:

Somebody's Darling, Salute (Lakewood Bar & Grill) - Wow! Two great shows at LB&G in one weekend. Looks like the club is on some sort of roll.
Fishing For Comets, Billygoat Brink (Opening Bell Coffee) - Someone buy Eric Neal a drink. He'll be doing double duty with both bands on the bill.
Boys Named Sue (Lee Harvey's) - It's being billed as the "Evil Neighbor is Gone" party. Just a thought here, but if you're moving near a bar that has outdoor live bands, you should either be OK with the music, or choose a different place to live, and not expect the club that was there before you to change. But that's just my opinion.
Eleven Hundred Springs, Big Smith, The King Bucks (Granada Theater) - My deepeest congratulations go out to the guys in Eleven Hundred Springs, who are celebrating their tenth anniversary together at this show. The best part? After ten years, the band shows NO signs of slowing down. None. Zero. Nada. That is no small feat right there.
Spector 45, Clay & The Electronic Cowboys, Escort Service, The Black Hollies (Club Dada) - This is a 5 year anniversary show for Spector 45. Hmmm... 10 year anniversary for Eleven Hundred Springs, 5 year Anniversary for Spector 45... maybe it's just coincidence, or perhaps this is a good time of year to start bands.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Funkiest of Funkytown

In case you missed it, Fort Worth Weekly has announced their nominees for their 2008 Music Awards. I'm not certain when voting ends, but I do know that winners will be announced June 21 in downtown Fort Worth. Both parking and admission are free to this event, and I will give you more details as I get them.

In the meantime, I offer up for you a list of nominees in all the different categories. If I have a personal preference in a category, I will italicize the name of the artist, song, or whatever. Oh, and click right here to vote.


  • Black Tie Dynasty

  • The Burning Hotels

  • Calhoun

  • The Cut*off

  • Lifters

  • Tame.. Tame & Quiet


  • Exit 380

  • Incendiary

  • Jefferson Colby

  • The Me-Thinks

  • Sky Eats Airplane

  • Spoonfed Tribe

  • Stella Rose


  • Addnerim

  • Blood of the Sun

  • Brickfight

  • The Great Tyrant

  • Legends of the South

  • Merkin

  • One-Fingered Fist

  • Urizen

  • Within Chaos


  • The Black Bonnets

  • Frontier Brothers

  • Panther City Bandits

  • Pretty Baby

  • Proud Warrior

  • Rivercrest Yacht Club

  • Telegraph Canyon

  • Whiskey Folk Ramblers


  • Buddah

  • FNKY1

  • Riot

  • Sexy9

  • Soul

  • Wildhair


  • The Campaign

  • Darth Vato

  • High School Assembly

  • Holy Moly

  • The Iliads

  • Pablo and the Hemphill 7

  • Sally Majestic

  • Villain Vanguard

NOTE: While I'm inclined to recommend The Campaign for this award based on what I've heard from the MySpace, I cannot honestly recommend any as live bands since I've seen none of them live. And after all, the award is best LIVE band.


  • Alan

  • Best Fwends

  • The Bible Fire

  • Eaton Lake Tonics

  • Ghoultown

  • PFFFT!

  • Sleeplab

  • Top Secret...Shhh

  • Underground Railroad


  • Dove Hunter

  • Collin Herring

  • Clint Niosi

  • Panther City Bandits

  • Telegraph Canyon

  • The Theater Fire

  • Whiskey Folk Ramblers


  • Brad Hines

  • Joey Green Band

  • Jordan Mycoskie & The Fire-Breathing Fish

  • Kyle Bennett Band

  • Maren Morris

  • Magee Payne

  • Stephen Pointer

  • Standard Transmission


  • 100 Damned Guns

  • Tommy Alverson

  • Cadillac Sky

  • Lost Country

  • Ginny Mac

  • Phil Prichett

  • Kurt South

  • Quebe Sisters


  • Blackland River Devils

  • Bosque Brown

  • Daniel Katsuk

  • PrinceRodriguez

  • James Michael Taylor

  • Russ Walton


  • Amistad

  • Daymond Callahan

  • Fort Worth Jazz Orchestra w/Adonis Rose

  • Jazz Monsters

  • Jhon Kahsen

  • Lazzo

  • Rachella Parks


  • Dirty & Earthvibes

  • James Hinkle

  • Josh Weathers Band

  • The Red Herrings

  • Holland K. Smith

  • Drue Webber

  • JZ & Dirty Pool


  • 6TWO

  • 8-11 & Ph.D

  • Immortal soldierz

  • PPT

  • Rivercrest Yacht Club

  • Smooth Vega

  • Versatile

  • Keite Young


  • April Geesbreght

  • Maren Morris

  • Elizabeth Wills

  • Beth Wood

  • Zayra (Pretty Baby)


  • Daniel Katsuk (Katsuk)

  • Matt Mooty (The Burning Hotels)

  • Cory Watson (Black Tie Dynasty)

  • Carey Wolff

  • Keite Young


  • Tyler Casey/Nathan Scheidewent (Titan Moon)

  • April Geesbreght

  • Collin Herring

  • Daniel Katsuk (Katsuk)

  • Tim Locke (Calhoun)

  • Keite Young


  • All The Good News - Telegraph Canyon

  • Big Fire - April Geesbreght

  • Denglish - PPT

  • Last of the Great Mississippi Bluesmen Live in Dallas - The Blue Shoe Project

  • Out in the Wind - Katsuk

  • Past Life Crashing - Collin Herring

  • Rivercrest Yacht Club - Rivercrest Yacht Club

  • Texas - Playradioplay!

  • Vinyl Destination - Joey Greene Band

  • When the Music Starts - Mount Righteous


  • Falter.Waver.Cultivate - Calhoun

  • Goodwin 2 - Goodwin

  • Gravity Suddenly Released - Stumptone

  • Film Black - Titanmoon

  • My Cosmic Self - Jefferson Colby

  • Packaged Up for Beginners - The Cut*off

  • Public Service Announcement - Spoonfed Tribe


  • Alibi - Lifters

  • Elephants as Big as Whales - Playradioplay!

  • Jenny O - Josh Weathers Band

  • My Mistake - April Geesbreght

  • Punches - Collin Herring

  • To Me Mum - PPT

  • Violent Man - Pretty Baby

Okay, I have to say this. Shame on the nominating committee for selecting PPT's "To Me Mum" instead of "Save it For Another Day" or "Who's That Girl?", the latter of which should be winning Song of the Year.


  • Big House - The Cut*off

  • Breathe - Calhoun

  • Grace - Goodwin

  • Gravity Suddenly Released - Stumptone

  • Morroco - Titanmoon

There must be something in the Fort Worth water. Both "Black Market Value" and "Need a Release" are better cut*off songs, and "Write for You" is Goodwin's best song.


  • Calhoun

  • Green River Ordinance

  • Goodwin

  • Katsuk

  • Playradioplay!

  • Stumptone


  • Child O' Mine

  • Poo Live Crew

  • Prophets of Rage

  • Stoogeophilia

  • Velvet Love Box


  • Lee Allen

  • Andre Edmonson

  • Matt Hembre

  • Dave Karnes

  • Marcus Lawyer

  • Adonis Rose

  • Bart Rose

I feel totally out of touch with the FW music scene at this moment. I know NONE of these names. Correction: Dave Karnes is the drummer for Rahim Quazi, and that's reason enough for me to recommend him.


  • 8.0 Bar and Cafe

  • Aardvark

  • Arts Fifth Avenue

  • Lola's Saloon

  • The Moon

  • Ridglea Theater

  • Scat Jazz Lounge

  • The White Elephant

Monday, May 26, 2008

Album Review: Supernatural, Rahim Quazi

Elvis Costello made the famous quote that “writing about music is like dancing about architecture.” It may come as a surprise to hear me, a blogger, say this, but I think that there is a large amount of truth in that statement. When music is truly at its best, it touches a place inside of one’s self that words cannot seem to do justice to. Very few albums truly reach that level, but Rahim Quazi’s Supernatural is such an album. So bear with me, as I attempt to dance about architecture.

The album opens with the title track, a truly infectious yet inspiring pop tune with a chorus (“5, 4, 3, 2, one day he’ll see you on the ground, lost or found/Save your life, that’s just no good anymore) that is likely to set up permanent residence in your head upon hearing it. It is the kind of song that would feel at home on the radio, and more importantly, it manages to possess a potential for mainstream success, while never feeling derivative or trying to be a hit single. The song naturally has the quality that demands repeated listening.

Much of the album has a strong pop sensibility to it. “She Falls” has a definite McCartney-esque sound to it. In fact, many of the tracks on the album (“In This Life”, “Goodbye”, and the hidden track “Life, It’s a Gas”) show a definite appreciation of the Beatles on Mr. Quazi’s part. While the Beatles influence is unmistakably apparent, the songs never come off as Beatles rip offs. In fact, one of the most pleasant things about this album is that the sound of the songs is truly original. Whereas most bands it is easy to play the “pin the tail on the influences” game as I call it, he manages to take his influences and meld it into something that seems to defy simple classification.

The album also manages to take a multitude of styles and put them together on one album and yet never does Supernatural feel disjointed. Some of the tracks like “Always Be There” and “You Fool” show a much more rocking side of Mr. Quazi (the latter of which translates into an intense experience when performed live). Other tracks like “Gifts and Burdens” and “So Much Better” are mellow, introspective numbers that tells stories that will draw the listener in. Granted, 2008 has not even reached the halfway mark yet, but I would be shocked if I heard a better album this year than Supernatural. Don’t just take my word for it. After all, I’m only dancing about architecture. This is an album that is a must have not for just local music fans, but for anyone who understands the power of music.

Sunday, May 25, 2008 Playlist: 5/25/08

I'm doing something a little different with the playlist this time around. This week's playlist has something of a theme. It's a playlist in remembrance of artists from the past. Some of these are bands who have broken up, and some of the musicians have passed away. Either way, I thought I'd make this playlist in honor of these musicians. By the way, with the current wave of reunion shows, I should note that as of the time of this playlist, none of these bands are actively playing together. That, of course, could change very quickly. You never know.

  1. "Right Now I Could Be a Ghost", [DARYL] - It's not like [DARYL] has broken up per se, but Dylan Silvers has been far too busy with The Crash That Took Me to do any [DARYL] shows, so the band is "on hiatus" indefinitely.

  2. "The Last Ride", Adventures of Jet - This is another band that does rare but ocassional reunion shows. Since the reunion shows tend to emphasize the Bobgoblin songs, I opted for this AOJ song instead.

  3. "See That My Grave Is Kept Clean", Blind Lemon Jefferson - You knew I had to put a Blind Lemon Jefferson song on here. It's a given.

  4. "Some Sweet Day", Budapest One - Yes, Budapest One does an ocassional reunion show too, and the most recent reunion show was a matter of months ago. Still, it's hard to keep the band going on a full time basis when the two key players (Keith Killoren and Chad Stockslager) are busy playing with The Drams.

  5. "New Hope PA", The Chemistry Set - One of my all time favorite songs by one of my all time favorite Dallas bands.

  6. "Need", Eden Automatic - During the year 2001, their CD Glimmer would have easily made the top 10 most listened to CD list. Annette and Doug Conlon, have since moved to Los Angeles, but one can only hope they'll swing by Dallas again and play a show.

  7. "Pent Up Brunette", Fury III - I've heard several songs by this band, but none could quite compare to this catchy tune. I'd call them a "one-hit wonder", except for the fact that this song unfortunately get a big enough following to earn the one-hit wonder title.

  8. "Band", Hagfish - This is one band that hasn't taken advantage of the wave of reunion shows... yet.

  9. "Gonna Be a Rockstar", Happiness Factor - The first time I met Salim Nourallah was when he fronted Happiness Factor. It's a decidedly more loud, rocking sound that what is heard on his solo CD's. The lyrical wit and sarcasm is still present in these tunes though.

  10. "2828", Hi-Fi Drowning - I would've prefered to do "The Saint's Id" or "Everzo", but the titles have been switched, labelling "The Saint's Id" as "Everzo" and vice versa. Perhaps it shouldn't bug me so much, but it does, so I opted for this other fine track from Rounds the Rosa.

  11. "Zermatt", Lucy Loves Schroeder - This is Sara Radle in her pop-punk days. Listening to this gives me the sudden urge to wear all red and black.

  12. "Satellites", Red Animal War - I'm going to be honest here. During the time this band was together, I did not like them at all. I heard this track on a Dallas radio station, liked it, and to my surprise, it was a Red Animal War song. If I had heard more songs of this calliber by the band, maybe I would have become a fan.

  13. "Rockin' Bones", Ronnie Dawson - I am glad that I got to see this Dallas rockabilly legend play live before he died in 2003.

  14. "Pinball Song", Slobberbone - An average setlist by The Drams seems to contain more Slobberbone songs than Drams songs, so one could argue that Slobberbone is still together. Still, the lineup is different between the two bands. I opted for this song since I don't recall ever hearing this song performed at any Drams shows.

  15. "Hospitals and Sex", Sorta - I remember watching in awe of what a tremendous job that Carter Albrecht did on keyboards when playing this song live.

  16. "My Beautiful Life", Sparrows - And what a beautiful life it was.

  17. "Life by the Drop", Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble - Stevie was known as a guitar virtuoso, but this track shows the more introspective side of the legend.

  18. "Any Given Saturday", Spitfire Tumbleweeds - Here is the most recent entry in the list of broken up local bands.

  19. "Bully", Sugarbomb - I never understood how this band failed to make the leap into the national scene. Their music was pure pop joy a la Ben Folds Five, Queen, Jellyfish, and the like. I have also never been so sad to see a band break up as when Sugarbomb did.

  20. "Blown Away", Tripping Daisy - As I believe I've mentioned before, I never got the opportunity to see this band live. I was seriously considering going to one of their shows at Curtain Club, but before that show happened, Wes Berggren died of a heart attack.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend Shows

I've got three days worth of recommended shows here. Check all these out; I'm sure there's at least one show on this list that you'll dig.

The Slack (Barley House) - Sorry, Chris Holt is ill and will not be able to do the show.
Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights (Woody's Tavern) - Have I mentioned lately how totally incredible JT&NL are live? Their performances are electrifying and soulful and everything that music is supposed to be.
Crash Vinyl, Goodwin, Darlington (Double-Wide) - Is it just me, or there this major reunion show trend going on here? It started with Chomsky, then came Macavity, then tomorrowpeople, and now Crash Vinyl is reuniting. Too bad Sara Radle is busy with The Rentals and Calamity Magnet, otherwise we might haved lucked out and gotten a Lucy Loves Schroeder reunion show.

C.B.G.B. Benefit (City Tavern) - No, this is not an attempt to resurrect the New York City punk club. The initials stand for crawfish boil and great beer, and the event will raise money for both Cystic Fibrosis and autism research. Musical highlights will include the debut performance of Nick Durham's band Monchos Ponchos (7 pm), as well as the always fabulous Felons (8 pm), Millicent Friendly (9 pm), Escort Service (11 pm), and Dirt Blazers (midnight).
The Felons, The Farstar, Salute (Double-Wide) - For those who can't get enough of The Felons, they will also headline at Double-Wide.
Black Tie Dynasty, The Burning Hotels, The Demigs (Granada Theater) - I am seriously disappointed that I will not be able to make The Demigs part of the show due to work obligations. Chris Demiglio and his bandmates produce wonderfully catchy yet noisy tunes that are sure to please. Oh yeah, and Black Tie Dynasty are good too.
Sarah Jaffe, Telegraph Canyon (Club Dada) - Sarah is a unique musical force in the fact that she does something that almost no other act in Dallas can do: she gets people to shut up and listen. At every performance of hers I have seen, you could hear a pin drop during the set. When you have as beautifully haunting and powerful of a voice as Ms. Jaffe has, people feel compelled to listen. I am certain this show will be no exception.
Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights (Hat Tricks) - Why are JT&NL playing at Hat Trick's in Lewisville? Because Lewisville people need good music too. That's why.

Boys Named Sue, THe BAcksliders, 500 Miles to Memphis (House of Blues) - First of all, I think it's great for a larger venue like HOB to host a show for local acts. Second of all, BNS and THe BAcksliders are two of the best bands in these parts. While 500 Miles to Memphis is not local, they are an incredible band reminiscent of the best aspects of Slick 57. I believe this band did originate in Dallas, and if any members of the band are reading this, I will buy every band member a beer if you agree to relocate permanently in Dallas. Think about it.
Fishing For Comets (Sue Ellen's) - I see nothing about this on the Sue Ellen's website, but FFC's MySpace says that they'll be playing there. We'll see.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Shake It Up, Baby!

In case you haven't noticed, I really dig Greater Good. And if you haven't noticed that, you need to read Ghost of Blind Lemon more often. Seriously, you do.

But that's a story for another day. My point is that today, the band is finally releasing their first full length album, Shake Till I Let You Go. Although I do not have the album yet, I still feel I can recommend the album based solely on their live shows and songs on MySpace. I know you can buy the album on Itunes, Amazon, and the Barnes & Noble website. I'm not sure if you'll be able to find it yet at Good Records, CD World, or any of the other independent record stores in town, but I would call them and ask them to carry the album if they are not doing so already.

So get your copy, and yes, shake it till you let go. Yeah, that was cheesy. I know.

Sunday, May 18, 2008 Playlist: 5/18/08

  1. "Serious", [DARYL] - Another frustration with is that they use brackets as part of their coding language. As a result, users can't really show their love of the band because the brackets in the band's name confuses the computers. Oh well.

  2. "Bearfield Fight Song", American Werewolf Academy - My thanks to Aaron Thedford for finally uploading the band's catalogue to the website. I'm sure my readers will be thankful to Mr. Thedford after they hear what I can only describe as "candy to the ears".

  3. "Fat Girls", THe BAcksliders - Another fabulous track from You're Welcome. The CD Release Party is June 6th at Double-Wide; save that date.

  4. "Trick Photography", Black Tie Dynasty - I predict that BTD will not play this song Saturday at the Granada Theater. Frankly, I miss hearing this song at their shows.

  5. "Throw Me Overboard", The Demigs - This band opens for BTD and The Burning Hotels at Granada. Be there early for this band. Why? Because they rule; that's why.

  6. "Mama Help Me", Edie Brickell and New Bohemians - This song just never caught on the way it should have. I'd call it sophomore slump, except that the song is too good to slap that label on it.

  7. "Still Below You", Fishing For Comets - I chose the version off of their debut EP because, well, that's the only version in the catalogue.

  8. "Write for You", Goodwin - I've been listening to this song so much that I'm hoping all of you enjoy as much as I have. That's why "Write for You" remains on the playlist for a second week.

  9. "What Are You Waiting For?", John Dufilho - Even though it's from John's solo album, it feels just like a Deathray Davies song. Not that that's a bad thing.

  10. "Sophisticate", The Marked Men - I had not heard of this band until listening to them on's Denton Tag Radio. If you're a fan of pop punk (Ramones style of course, not Good Charlotte), then you'll probably like this song.

  11. "A Smile in the Garden of Sunshine", Matthew and the Arrogant Sea - Okay, so the band went a little overboard with the multi-million dollar record deal story. Get past the hype, and what you'll find are some lovely songs by this band.

  12. "In Tennessee", Nicholas Altobelli - Another thanks goes out to Mr. Altobelli for uploading songs on His Streetcar Visions EP is a very enjoyable collection of songs that is well worth buying.

  13. "Doreen", Old 97's - Alas, I do not have a copy of Blame It on Gravity yet. Perhaps I'll buy it at Good Records on the 31st when Old 97's also do an in-store performance. By the way, I want to know, readers, what do you think of the new album?

  14. "Love My Way", The Polyphonic Spree- Yes, I'm a sucker for unusual cover songs, and this is definitely an unusual cover. Hearing the ever so happy Tim DeLaughter sing "It's a fashion with a gun my love", well, that just doesn't have that happy go lucky Polyphonic Spree vibe. Yet it works. Go figure.

  15. "When We Was Kool", PPT - Is it humanly possible to frown and listen to a PPT song at the same time? I doubt it. By the way, if you haven't checked out the video on YouTube yet, do so.

  16. "Almost Home", Rahim Quazi - I figured that the first Rahim song to be featured on a playlist would be the title track to his new album, Supernatural. That was before I saw that Rahim uploaded this, one of my favorite songs of his ever. This song has never made it onto an album; I've only heard it at live shows, mostly because he's kind enough to play it whenever I yell this song out. "Supernatural" will have to wait for another week. By the way, look for more stuff on Rahim on Ghost of Blind Lemon in the near future.

  17. "Slide Shows", Rose County Fair - I have nothing witty or insightful to offer about this song, other than the fact that it's by Rose County Fair, which means it's good. Enough said.

  18. "Hang On", Salim Nourallah - I've never known another songwriter who can write such sad lyrics and make it so utterly catchly as Salim Nourallah can do. Who else could write lines like "hang on, hang on/'til everything is gone" and make it a chorus that sticks in your head?

  19. "Goats Across the Fire", Shibboleth - I love this song, but really guys, what's up with the song title?

  20. "Your Life", Smile Smile - Between "Hang On" and this song, maybe I oughtta warn listeners to take their Prozac before listening to this playlist.