Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Few Pieces of News Today

First of all, I must mention that today is the day that Trey Johnson's first solo CD, Mount Pelee, hits both stores and iTunes. Mr. Johnson is one Dallas' finest songwriters, and he has composed eleven great songs for this debut effort. Some of the tracks ("A Fire, Train and an Enemy", "Struggle to Find") feel like they could be outtakes from previous Sorta sessions, while others ("Old Reactions", "Unfavorable Way") are a departure from the sound of his previous band. Some things never change however, like Trey's trademark haunting voice and his ability to pen lyrics both intelligent and heartfelt. Do yourself a favor and pick up this CD. Thursday might be a good date to purchase it at Good Records, as Trey will be performing that evening at 7 pm.

The other piece of news is about this Friday's GOBL anniversary show at City Tavern. I believe I previously announced that tickets would be ten dollars, but that is incorrect. Cover will now be a mere five dollars to see Elkhart, The O's, Menkena, Iris Leu, The League of Fucking Decency, and Spencer Garland. That should make it easier on your pocketbook. But in case that's not easy enough on your pocketbook, I'm going to make things even easier on you. I am giving away a pair of tickets to this Friday's show.

Here's all you have to do to win: send me an email at ghostofblindlemon@gmail.com and name one act that played last year's event. Eight acts played; you only need to mention one. The first person to email me with the answer wins the tickets. Good luck!

UPDATE: Congratulations to Tara Fallon, who was the first to email the names of Kristina Morland, The Felons, and THe BAcksliders. She'll be going to this Friday's show free of charge. And in case you were curious, the other acts were American Werewolf Academy, Rahim Quazi, the cut*off, Rose County Fair, and Somebody's Darling.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

MySpace Playlist: 7/26/09

  1. "Luminary", The Monco Poncho

  2. Originally my anniversary show was scheduled to go down August 1st. When it was changed to July 31st, it pitted me directly against a Monco Poncho show, an unenviable position to be in. The band will open for Kim Lenz & The Jaguars at Double-Wide. Without Nick Durham there, it will feel like just a little less of a party.
  3. "Lies", Camille Cortinas

  4. This is annoying. ANOTHER friend of mine up against my showcase.
  5. "You Know Nothing", Inner City All-Stars

  6. The band was originally scheduled to play when the date was August 1st, but when the date changed, the band was unable to move. Maybe I can get the band next year.
  7. "Better Things!", Spencer Garland

  8. "I Hate This So Called Reality", The League of Fucking Decency

  9. "For Keeps", Iris Leu

  10. "Rocketships", Menkena

  11. "California", The O's

  12. "You've Got Your Heart", The O's

  13. "Little Bear", Elkhart

  14. The rest of these acts, however, will be found this Friday night at City Tavern, helping me celebrating two years of blogging. Give the songs a listen, and I'm sure after doing so, the urge to come to my showcase will be overwhelming. By the way, even though I put The O's twice on my playlist, they're only playing one set. Just thought I should say that.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Update on My 2 Year Anniversary Show

I previously announced my 2 year anniversary celebration in a previous blog entry, and I wanted to give an update on information for the festivities. First of all, the event has been moved from Club Dada to City Tavern. I made the move out of concern with the difficulties that Dada has been facing lately, plus it's not easy moving a lineup this large. I still have nothing but the greatest of love for both the club and its owner, Ben Tapia, and hope to book a GOBL event at Dada in the very near future. I must say, I have enjoyed the opportunity to work with Josh Florence of City Tavern. All the musicians I've talked to about City Tavern have had nothing but rave reviews of their experiences at this place, and any place that makes musicians happy, makes me happy.

The other development I have to report is that Inner City All-Stars will unfortunately not be able to play the event. Hopefully I can get them to play a show in the near future, because this band's live set is one of the most fun live music events you'll get to see.

I was going to show off the awesome poster for the event, made by Lance Lester from Bona Fide Darling. For some reason, the coloring seems to come out weird on my blog. Cindy Chaffin did not have this problem on The Fine Line, so click here to see the poster on her blog. And please, mark July 31st on your calendar, and mark it in pen, not pencil. This is going to be an incredible lineup featuring Spencer Garland, The League of Fucking Decency, Menkena, Iris Leu, The O's, and Elkhart. You may want to rest up as much as you can the next two weeks, because this is going to be the par-tay!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

MySpace Playlist: 7/19/09

I've gotten into some conversations with people lately, and I got the impression that people just viewed this weekly post of mine as a mere list of songs. Yes, it is a list, but to be more specific, it is a PLAYLIST that is meant to be listened to. Each week's playlist can be heard on my MySpace page, and I would strongly encourage you to do just that. Look to the left side of the screen, and you'll see several links, including a link that will take you to my MySpace page. I'd love to be able to post the actual playlist on the blog, but unfortunately MySpace does not allow for that. What I'd encourage my readers to do is to open another window to look at my MySpace page with, and listen as you read. After all, the reason I highlight these songs is that I want them to be HEARD.

  1. "The Gift", Hi-Fi Collective
    This band will be making its debut performance this Thursday at my Lakewood Bar & Grill showcase. I think this is a band that shows promise, and am quite curious to see live.

  2. "Luckier Man", John Lefler
    Here's another act on Thursday's LBG lineup. Yes, this is the same John Lefler that is in Dashboard Confession. No, his solo stuff does not even vaguely sound like the band he's in. His debut solo CD, Better by Design, was produced by Salim Nourallah, and it definitely shares similar melodic territory with Mr. Nourallah's solo work.

  3. "The Queen Himself", Fate Lions
    Just in case Mr. Lefler pop hooks aren't enough pop for you in one evening, Fate Lions rounds out Thursday's bill. By the way, Dave Little is also playing, but I couldn't find any music to put on my playlist.

  4. "All I Wanted", Hendrick
    This song helps show that "Echo and the Pass" is not the only good CD off their new CD, Exhale. This one is catchy, very pretty, and an all around great song in its own right.

  5. "Unfavorable Way", Trey Johnson
    I have to make a confession: I was not initially a fan of this song. Perhaps it's because this song feels like a radical departure from the Sorta sound that I had associated Mr. Johnson with since I've known him. Upon reexamination of this song, I have found the song to be memorable and catchy, with the usual lyrical intelligence I would associate with Trey's music with Sorta. This is from his upcoming Idol Records release, Mount Pelee, which comes out later this month. Save your pennies, because you will want a copy.

  6. "Maths", Record Hop
    Noise rock fans, listen up. Boom Boom Box and Record Hop will play together at Double Wide this Friday. Will it be loud? Oh yes. Will it be fun? Most definitely!

  7. "Maureen's House", The Marfalites
    I saw the band's debut performance a few Fridays ago at LBG, and was quite pleased with their set. I have a special fondness for this track, and I'm sure they'll be playing it this Friday at City Tavern.

  8. "Deal Me Out", David Ramirez
    A month ago, I had never even heard of David Ramirez. I ended up attending his CD release party for American Soil and purchasing the CD. This is a CD that does require repeated listens, but trust me, the payback you get from the repeated listens is enormous. Mr. Ramirez reminds me of an Americana equivalent of Damien Rice; his vocal phrasings are even similar to Damien Rice. My one frustration is that Mr. Ramirez' MySpace does not contain any of my favorites from the CD ("Bloom", "Drunk", "I Am Ready to Go Home"). Still, it's not as if any of the tracks on the CD are weak, and if you like "Deal Me Out", you will be pleasantly surprised by the CD. Don't be surprised if this album makes my top 10 local CD's list.

  9. "Lost My Heart", Becky Middleton
    Becky's sister, Jennifer, has been accepted to the Bristol Old Vic Theater, located in England. This is no small accomplishment, and unfortunately, the cost of the college is not small either. This is where you, the reader, come in. There will be a fundraiser at the South Side location of Opening Bell Coffee. There is a suggested $8 donation for cover, plus 10% of all sales that evening go towards the cost of Jennifer's education. Becky Middleton will be playing the evening, as will GOBL favorite Taylor Davis, Jaimee Harris, and Phillip & Daniel Creamer. "The Ghost" is always a sucker for a good charity event, and this definitely fits the bill.

  10. "The Girl Who Stole the Eiffel Tower", The Deathray Davies
    Possibly one of the coolest events of my life was the night I helped Chad on keyboards onstage during this particular Deathray Davies track. Deathray Davies, in my opinion, are one of the best bands to ever emerge out of the Dallas music scene. Performances have been few and far between lately. There most recent show was in December 2007 at the Granada Theater. Ladies and gentlemen, the wait is over. This Saturday marks the triumphant return of DRD to our city. They will headline a show at Sons of Hermann Hall, which will also feature Salim Nourallah, San Antonio band Buttercup, and the cut*off. As for me performing again with Deathray Davies, I wouldn't hold your breath.

Friday, July 17, 2009

MAJOR Oversight on My Part!!!

I had a long list of shows to discuss for the weekend, and I tried to be as thorough as possible. Alas, I left one show out, and it's a really big deal show. Hendrick plays the Granada Theater this Saturday night, celebrating the release of their new CD, Exhale. I plan to do a proper review of the album in the upcoming weeks. As you might have noticed, however, one particular track off the CD has grabbed my attention. In fact, not only has it grabbed my attention, it has refused to let go, clinging tenaciously inside my brain. That song is "Echo and the Pass", a gorgeous eight minute epic that goes straight to the heart. I have often said that when music is truly at its finest, words cannot do it justice. That is exactly how I feel about that song. Without going into an actual review of the CD, I will say that while "Echo and the Pass" is the highlight of Exhale, it is by no means the only good song on there. Scott McCurry and Chris August open this fine show. And by all means, if I've forgotten any other good shows this weekend, post a comment as a gentle (or not so gentle) reminder.

The Weekend Before the DOMA's

Obviously, the weekend's biggest event is going to be the Dallas Observer Music Awards Showcase, starting at 6 p.m. tomorrow. If you're unfamiliar with these showcases, here's how it works: you purchase a wristband for $5, which allows you to get into six different venues along Lower Greenville. These wristbands can be purchased at any of the participating clubs. For more details, click here. As for which bands you should see, I'm having a hard time deciding myself. I will say that some of the acts you'll most likely find me watching include Chris Holt, Spector 45, The O's, Salim Nourallah, and The Orbans. I will probably not see any band in its entirity, because there are too many good bands pitted against each other. Do you choose Chris Holt or Spector 45? The O's or Binary Sunrise? Doug Burr or True Widow? Those are just a small number of the musical dilemnas I'll face Saturday night. Either way, this is a great chance to discover new band, plus it's your final opportunity to vote in the DOMA's. If you haven't done so yet, you need to do so pronto. I am nominated for Best Music Advocate, so if you feel I am worthy of the title, your vote would be appreciated.

But for now, let's look at some shows that have nothing to do with the DOMA showcases:


Rahim Quazi & The Supernaturals (Veritas)
Mr. Quazi is a long time GOBL fave, and his shows are ever evolving, living and breathing creatures. It is always fascinating to see what form his songs take on in a given evening. The only thing better than the music is the cause he's supporting. This show benefits The Family Place. There's not technically a cover charge, but they are accepting donations of toys, toothpaste, and shampoo. It's nice combo; you feel good from both the music and from helping. That, my friend, is what we call a win-win situation.
Taylor Davis/The Felons/King of the Rabbit Trail (City Tavern)
It seems like the past few weeks, everywhere I turn around, Taylor Davis is there. Maybe that's because I've booked him for two GOBL shows, and also got him an opening slot on the Felons' CD release show. Mr. Davis and The Felons find themselves reunited, but with Taylor headlining this show. With each performance, I become more and more impressed with Mr. Davis' talent in both the singing and songwriting arenas. And I've always been impressed with The Felons, as should have been evident by my review of their new CD, At Sea.
Little Black Dress/Heart Eyes Open/The Rain Horses (The Cavern)
I still haven't seen Heart Eyes Open yet, but have heard good word of mouth on the band. I have seen Little Black Dress, and have always been impressed with the band. Any shoegaze fans who have not seen LBD yet are strongly encouraged to do so immediately.
Clay & Electronic Cowboys (Cafe Rembrandt)
I'm guessing this is a Friday night regular event. I need to check it out. Last week, I commented on how Clay's LBG show turned into a mini dance party. I'm still wondering if that was a fluke that occured because of certain people in the audience, or this is a regular occurence. If you attend this show, please report back to me and tell me if the Cafe Rembrandt shows are dance parties as well. I need to know these things.
Scott H. Biram/Grady/RTB2 (Granada Theater)
This is the CD release show for their EP, In the Fleshed. I'm gonna keep this one brief: it's RTB2, therefore it is good. Seriously, if you like stripped down bluesy rock, this band will make you happy.


The Slack (Lee Harvey's)
Chris Holt will be keeping busy Saturday. After his early set at Billiard Bar for the DOMA's, he gets the band together for a free Lee Harvey's show. After watching one of Mr. Holt's crazy guitar solos with The Slack, you'll totally see why he was nominated for Best Musician.
Menkena (City Tavern)
I'm sure there are others playing with Menkena, but the City Tavern website did not give names. That's OK, because Menkena alone is worth twice the amount of money you'll have to pay at City Tavern, and that's the truth.
The Shapes/The Flying Eyes/Til We're Blue or Destroy/Lovie (The Lounge on Elm Street)
I still haven't gotten to see this venue, and I will probably miss out again this weekend. It's a shame, because The Shapes and Lovie are both great bands. I get to see Lovie on a regular basis, but it's been years since I've seen The Shapes. The band seems to be getting some long overdue buzz lately, and if you're into garage rock with some killer pop hooks, this is something you'll like.
Somebody's Darling/John David Kent (House of Blues Cambridge Room)
For those who missed Amber Farris' solo set last night at LBG, it was pretty amazing. How she didn't get a nomination for Best Female Vocalist in the DOMA's is beyond me. Fortunately, her band Somebody's Darling did get a well earned nod for best Country Act. Can't wait for their new CD. I'll let you know when it comes out.

And of course, there's the Dallas Observer Music Awards Showcase. There's plenty to keep you busy this weekend.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Acoustic Music Fans - This Is for You!

Tonight's gonna be a little crazy at Lakewood Bar & Grill. There are not three, not four, but FIVE singer/songwriters on the bill tonight. Nicholas Altobelli kicks off the evening at 9, and for those who haven't seen him, you're missing out on one of the area's best in the acoustic field. Afterwards, Culley Woods, Amber Farris (Somebody's Darling), Taylor Davis, and Mimo Morreale (Something in the Wheel) round out this bill. Get there early, stay late, and get your fill of acoustic music.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

MySpace Playlist: 7/18/09

  1. "Golden Storybook", Blue Petal
    I usually begin my playlists with my LBG shows, but I wanted to remind everyone of the Can't Stop the Serenity event, happening in a matter of hours from when I'm posting this entry. If you're digging this song, take a break from the playlist, and head out to Poor David's Pub.

  2. "City Limit Signs", Nicholas Altobelli

  3. "If It Never Gets Better", Taylor Davis

  4. Both Mr. Altobelli and Mr. Davis will be playing with me Thursday at LBG...
  5. "Easy", Somebody's Darling
    And while Somebody's Darling itself isn't playing my LBG show, lead singer Amber Farris will be doing an acoustic set.

  6. "Echo and the Pass", Hendrick
    It was about two weeks ago that I received a copy of their new CD, Exhale. In that time period, I have listened to "Echo and the Pass" over twenty times, probably more than any other song this entire year. To say that I love this song might be an understatement. I'm sure they will be playing this one at the Granada Theater Saturday night for the CD release show.

  7. "You've Got Your Heart", The O's
    This Saturday is the Dallas Observer Music Awards showcase, and they'll be playing at 8:00 at Bandera. The O's will undoubtedly receive at least one win, and I think they are definitely the most deserving in the categories of Best New Act, and I also think this track should take home the Best Song award. And if they take home more than that, I will be neither surprised nor disappointed.

  8. "Funeral Fashion", Dove Hunter
    Here's another DOMA nominee. This band will not be part of the showcase, but you can catch them for free tonight at Barley House. BTW, I'm hoping they take home the award for Best Indie act.

  9. "Go On", The Shapes
    After a few less eventful years for the band, things seem to be falling into place for The Shapes. Their songs have gotten airplay locally (KNON's Sonic Assembly Power Hour) and nationally (Power Pop Plus Radio WBCQ 5110), and their first CD should be released in the foreseeable future. This has always been my favorite of theirs, and they will hopefully play it Saturday night at the Lounge on Elm Street, along with Lovie and out of towners The Flying Eyes and Til We're Blue Or Destroy.

  10. "Grown Man", Sorta
    Now that Sorta is no more, the other members are still finding ways to stay busy. Trey Johnson's new CD, Mount Pelee, shall be released on Idol Records this month. Also, Danny Balis announced the release of his upcoming CD, Too Much Living. I also think that Chris Holt's band, The Slack, should have their second CD out by the end of the year. All that's missing now are CD's from Ward Williams and Trey Carmichael.

  11. "Give a Damn", Emmeline
    Many of you are probably not familiar with Emmeline. I discovered her last Wednesday at LBG, where she'll be playing every Wednesday this month starting at 8:00 pm. This woman not only possesses a beautiful voice, but writes songs that are simply beautiful and heartfelt. I also admittedly have a weakness for good piano/keyboard players, and her skills on the instrument are quite respectable, to stay the least. Please readers, check this track out because I think that this is a singer/songwriter that deserves a bigger break in the scene than she has gotten thus far.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Review: The Felons, At Sea

Before I review the CD, let me make this disclaimer. This past May, I offered up the opportunity to have an album reviewed on the website as part of the Ultraviolet auction to benefit Cystic Fibrosis. Winning the review guaranteed an honest album review, nothing more and nothing less. The winning bid was made by Dave Hickmott of The Felons, so here is the review of their recently released CD, At Sea.

The first thing I'm going to say is that At Sea is that is quite short. Clocking in at about 36 minutes and with a mere eight songs, this feels more like a sampler than a full length album. Perhaps it is unfair to harp upon the brief nature of the album, but I cannot help my frustration. Next time guys, let's shoot for ten or twelve songs at the least.

Having gotten that complaint out of the way, let's examine the songs that are on the album. The one thing that works by having so few songs is that there are no truly weak moments on the CD. Admittedly, "Sugar and Gas" is my least favorite track, but even it gets a solid thumbs up from me. The reason I pick on "Sugar and Gas" is that it does not match the strength of the other incredible seven tracks on the CD.

The album's opening, "Cathedral", starts out slowly and hooks you in with its opening line, "This town is like a Norman Rockwell portrait/All the train stations are full/Built for the self obsessed/The would be cool". One interesting note about the album is that for as incredibly catchy as all the songs are, there is a definite darkness to most of the lyrics. Later in "Cathedral", Mr. Hickmott sings, "I'd rather be in hell without you/Than a garden where I'm dumb and out of view". Even in his happiest sounding song, "Leave Me Out" (my personal favorite off the CD), the song sets its defiantly happy tone to a darker backdrop. "Break these blades upon your wrist/Take your sword and fall on it/Martyr yourself to your stupid cause/Like you've always threatened to do/But leave me out".

One might think by the lyrics that the sound of the album itself would be dark. Truth is, it's anything but dark sounding. "All Inside" and "Leave Me Out" have a very Muse like quality to them, with a slight hint of Tripping Daisy in the sound of the guitars. Throw in the excellent production job by Brian Nesbitt, and what you have is an album by a band that sounds ready for things bigger than just Dallas. These songs sound ready to breathe fresh life into the world of alternative music, bringing back the edginess and creativity that was once rampant within the genre.

In spite of its short length, At Sea does its job of showing off the band's strength for solid catchy songs with a certain dark bite to the lyrics. It also whets the appetite for their follow up CD, which will hopefully have more than eight songs. I'm sorry, I couldn't help myself on the last comment.

Weekend Plans: Friday-Sunday

I feel fairly certain that I'm missing some big events on my list for this weekend, but this is what I've got so far. As always, if I've forgotten an event, please post it in the comment section.


Macon Greyson/The Marfalites/Revolution Garden Party/Sucker Punch (Lakewood Bar & Grill)
The good news: The Marfalites, Noah Caveny's new band, will still be making their debut tonight, along GOBL favorite Macon Greyson. Bad news: King Bucks are no longer on the lineup, and apparently Club Dada is no longer hosting the two bands.
The Theater Fire (Lee Harvey's)
I stopped in at Lee Harvey's a few weekends ago and saw a little of Thin White Dukes there. I forgot what a neat venue this place is, and you have to love the inexpensive cover charge. And by inexpensive, I mean free. I'm not sure how the venue can pull off getting great bands like The Theater Fire without charging cover, but more power to them.
Record Hop/The Slow Burners (Barley House)
Speaking of free, there's never a cover at Barley House either. Record Hop are definitely louder than what one would typically see there, but I welcome any chance the club will take to cater to the music fan as opposed to the SMU "see and be seen" crowd. It's also worth noting that Record Hop's live shows only seem to improve over time. My only complaint with my last show of theirs was that the set was too short.
Speedtrucker (Adair's)
Have I just been under a rock, or is this show not being promoted well? You'd think that there would be a ton of promotion about this show.
Clay + Electronic Cowboys with Manya Repnikova (Cafe Rembrandt)
I don't know if Clay's shows regularly turn into dance parties, or if that's just a sign of the company I was keeping last week at my Ghost of Blind Lemon showcase. Either way, Mr. Pendergrass delivered energetic and passionate versions of songs from his East Dallas Mix Tape, Vol. 1 in styles different from the album, often times funkier and more fun. I'm not sure if Clay's going to bust out some Morning Elephant songs since Manya will be joining him. If you're curious, the only way to find out is to go see.


Rock The Block! (Primo's)
Outdoors shows in Dallas this time of year are uncomfortable at best. Brutal would be a more appropriate word. Having said that, this is a show that benefits two good causes (Kidd's Kids and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center) and hosts some good bands. The Felons will be taking the stage early in the day with their rock sound that is begging to be heard in concert halls and arenas. I'm not certain of the caliber of bands in the middle of the day, but the last three acts (King Bucks, The O's, Here In Arms) are all worth the $10 admission.
Speedtrucker (Adair's)
Just in case you needed more than one night.

Can't Stop the Serenity Music Showcase (Poor David's Pub)
I'm not going to restate my previous article on this event. Instead, I'm taking the lazy man's way out and offering you the opportunity to click here to read all about it.
Dove Hunter (Barley House)
If you're as broke as I am, you'll welcome as many free shows as you can get your hands on. You might wanna start coming up with excuses for why you'll be late to work on Monday.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Danny Balis: On His Own

For the past eight or so years, I have had the pleasure of seeing Danny Balis play back up in many of Dallas' finest bands: Sorta, Sparrows, King Bucks to name a few. While the Bucks have allowed Mr. Balis a few opportunities to step up to the mic, Danny finally gets his own turn in the spotlight. On September 1st, Balis' first ever solo CD, Too Much Living, will be released in stores as well as on itunes.

For those who saw Mr. Balis' solo set at the Carter Albrecht CD release show, that set should give you a good idea of what the disc will sound like. Danny's press release calls it a "straight up, old school, country and western record", and I cannot find a better way to describe it myself. This is not alt-country or Americana, and it most certainly is not the pop country that Nashville churns out on a regular basis. This is what would have come out of Nashville about thirty (or probably more like forty) years ago. This is music that will undoubtedly be savored and reloshed by country music purists.

I have yet to listen to the new album, and I intend to get my hands on a copy pronto. In the meantime, his first single, "Tethered", will be released to Texas country music stations. I would strongly recommend a telephone and e-mail campaign to 95.3 The Range, and although I'm skeptical about it actually happening, I would love to hear something so authentically country on KSCS or 99.5 The Wolf.

And yes, there will be a CD release party for Too Much Living at the Granada Theater. Mr. Balis will open for Slobberbone on the 21st, and I have no doubt there will be plenty of CDs available for purchase.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

You STILL Can't Stop the Serenity

It doesn't even feel like a year since the last Can't Stop the Serenity music showcase. Oh yeah, it was last May. That's why it feels so recent. Anyways, this Sunday sees another great evening of music at Poor David's Pub, all to benefit Equality Now, a non-profit organization that helps promote equal rights for women worldwide. Cover is $12, and the proceeds to the aforementioned charity Equality Now.

Doors open at 4, and the first scheduled performer is GOBL favorite Iris Leu, who will take the stage at about 5:00 pm. Blue Petal takes the stage at 5:45, and for those who haven't seen the band in awhile, they have grown leaps and bounds musically, and their live show is among one of the best in town. Their latest CD, Golden Storybook, is pretty impressive as well. Inner Frequency takes the stage at 6:45, and Austin powerhouse Patrice Pike takes the stage at 8:00 pm, and will have a nice, long two hour set.

Oh, and for all you sci-fi fans, there will be a screening of both the movie Serenity, as well as the internet sensation Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog the day before at Studio Movie Grill in Addison.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

MySpace Playlist: 7/5/09

  1. "The Royal Me", Les Americains

  2. "Leaves and Sticks", Romp Almighty

  3. "People Change", Tonite Tonite but After Tonite You're on Your Own

  4. Les Americains will headline Thursday's LBG show, with Tonite Tonite opening and Romp Almighty sandwiched nicely in the middle.
  5. "Maureen's House", The Marfalites

  6. Club Dada had a rough last week to say the least, but the good is supposed to open back up this Monday. That's good, because I'm really looking forward to the debut show of Noah Caveny's new band, The Marfalites. Oh yeah, Macon Greyson and King Bucks are both on the bill, and they're pretty damn good too.
  7. "Cathedral", The Felons

  8. I, "The Ghost", do hereby solemny swear that by the end of the business week, there shall be a review of At Sea posted.
  9. "Done", Deep Blue Something

  10. The KDGE reunion show was fun, even though DBS skipped most of my favorite songs. This is one of the ones they skipped.
  11. "End Film", Little Black Dress

  12. Just in case one song sung by Toby Pipes isn't enough for you, here's an offering from his latest project, Little Black Dress.
  13. "Yer Fool's Suite (Part II)", RTB2

  14. "Five Minutes", Binary Sunrise

  15. The DOMA's are quickly approaching, and I'd encourage you to cast your votes. If one of those votes is for me at Best Music Advocate, all the better. There are a lot of great nominees, and some categories are really painful for me to decide. I do, however, want to offer up a couple of quick endorsements. I opted for RTB2 over Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights, simply because I feel there's a greater blues sound in the music of RTB2. As for Binary Sunrise, they are probably the best electronica based band I've heard in awhile.
  16. "Echo and the Pass", Hendrick

  17. I just received Hendrick's upcoming CD, Exhale. I'm a little reluctant to say too much here, since I've had the songs for such a short time. In spite of said reluctance, I'm going to say this: "Echo and the Pass" is hands down the best song I've heard thus far this year. Yes, the song is long, clocking in at nearly eight minutes. Yet never for a second does the song fail to demand and command your attention. From its slow, gorgeous intro, to its intense climax, "Echo and the Pass" is a captivating gem of a song that needs to be heard by all.

Friday, July 3, 2009

4th of July Weekend Shows

I'm not gonna lie, I'm shocked by the slim number of choice shows I'm finding for this weekend. Am I overlooking something? If so, PLEASE send me a comment and let me know. A number of shows I'm recommending are acts I haven't even seen yet. In those cases, I will put an asterik by the name of acts I've liked what I've heard of, but have not caught a live set. With that in mind, let's start the list:


94.5 Reunion (Lakewood Theater)
My first Deep Ellum show was Old 97's at Trees back in '96, so I missed out on the glory days of Deep Ellum. Yet through George Gimarc, I was well educated on some of Dallas' best offerings, thanks to his Tales from the Edge series of CD's, as well as the fact that 94.5 KDGE kept a number of local bands in regular rotation. Tonight, Mr. Gimarc is holding a party in honor of the beginnings of that station, and it features many of the premier Dallas bands of that time period, including pop poppins, The Bat Mastersons, and Deep Blue Something. I've heard conflicting stories as to whether Decadent Dub Team or Cottonmouth, TX is playing, but either way, Jeff Liles will be on stage. Oh, and John Easdale of Dramarama will be playing. Also, word has it that all of the original DJ's will be on hand for the event. This event is not just for those wanting to relive the heyday of alternative radio or Deep Ellum, but an opportunity for a new generation to see what they missed out on.
Matthew Gray/Iris Leu/Jason Remier/St. Philistine (The Cavern)
The Cavern's website says Iris goes on last, and Ms. Leu says she goes on at 11:30, with Matthew Gray (of Matthew & The Arrogant Sea) headlining. Either way, get there early enough to ensure you don't miss Iris' set. Trust me on this one.
The Drams/The Slow Burners (Dan's Silverleaf)
Hands down, winner of the "best show in little d" award for the Independence day weekend.
The Dirty Birds*

Les Americains/Slider Pines (Double-Wide)
You'd think that Saturday would be the night with the most shows this weekend, but the reverse is true. The only thing I can figure is that people are going to stay at home and party there over the weekend, and save some money in this rough economy. Obviously, someone didn't tell Chelsea Callahan this, as she has booked one heck of a party at Double-Wide. Both bands on the lineup blend a not so delicate balance of great hooks with energetic rock and roll spirit. By the way, this is supposed to be a pool party, so you might wanna bring your swimwear in your car just in case. Either way, this show will be loads of fun.
Western Giants*/Touching Tongues*/Manned Missiles/Violent Still Life (The Cavern)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Update on Dada, Plus My Show Tonight

I wish I had some new news to offer my readers about the situation at Club Dada. The DC9 at Night blog has done an excellent job in covering the story, and I'd recommend you check it out for the latest info. I will tell you that if you were planning tonight to check out Zound Sound's head honcho, Marc Solomon, that the show has been moved from Dada to Sons of Hermann Hall. Friday night's show at Dada, however, is scheduled to go off as planned. I hope that this is a mere road bump in the history of Club Dada, arguably the most significant club in the history of Deep Ellum (certainly the club with the longest reign). Also, there are a couple of really cool shows happening there in the near future. Next friday, King Bucks and Macon Greyson play, along with the debut of Noah Caveny's new band, The Marfalites. And then of course, there's my anniversary show bash Friday, July 31st.

As for tonight, I invite you all to hang out with me at Lakewood Bar and Grill for a fabulous night of music. The poster tells you all you need to know, other than to be at the club at 9:00 for the entertainment.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Major Concert Announcement - July 31st at Club Dada

It was almost two years ago that I began blogging. Last year, I had a nice little shindig at Dada featuring Somebody's Darling, Rose County Fair, and THe BAcksliders, just to name a few. This year, for the 2nd anniversary of Ghost of Blind Lemon, I'm holding another major show at Club Dada on Friday, July 31st. I'm still finalizing details on the lineup, but let me share with you the artists I have so far, going in alphabetical order by first name:

Elkhart - I liked Travis Hopper well enough as a solo artist, but his work with Elkhart is just amazing. It's slow, dreamy, with a slight country vibe. For those who still feel the void of being without Pleasant Grove, then run, don't walk, to see Elkhart.

Inner City All Stars - Some bands need to be seen live, and this is one of them. Setting hip-hop lyrics to a New Orleans jazz sound, this is a fresh and exciting band sure to get even the squarest cat on his or her feet.

Iris Leu - There's a reason she won Quick's Big Thing award. Dallas has been sore lacking in the piano based songwriter field, and Ms. Leu's music is rich and gorgeous, taking a certain amount of classical influence, while meshing it with more contemporary influences (Sarah McLachlan, Tori Amos). Her album, Hushaboo, is one of this year's must have CD's.

Menkena - I think Menkena may hold the title of band I've seen most this year. Between Jimmy Menkena's knack for lyrics and his band's ability to create beautifully dreamy melodies, they are a band that needs to happen in a big way.

The O's - I almost got The O's to perform at last year's anniversary show, but they weren't quite ready at that point. Since then, the band has taken Dallas by storm, playing countless shows, winning a Quick award for Big Song ("You've Got Your Heart), and earning more Dallas Observer Music Award nominations than any other act. I'd say the band is more than ready at this point.

Spencer Garland - One thing I love to do as a blogger is give a new and upcoming artist an opportunity to reach a larger crowd. This acoustic singer-songwriter shows a lot of promise, so be sure to catch his yet.

As I said before, this is NOT a complete lineup, and I'm still working on the schedule. I can tell you that cover will be $10, and doors will open at 6, with the first act going on at about 6:15 or so. Start saving your pennies, because this will hopefully be an even bigger party than last year.

The Cut Off Vs. Schoolhouse Rock

The cut*off recently posted a video on Facebook that grabbed my attention. They took a new, as of yet unreleased song called "When You're Dead", and then set the music to an old Schoolhouse Rock clip. It's no surprise that the video is highly entertaining. What I don't want to get lost with this really cool clip is how good the actual song is. I would even dare to say it is the cut*off's most ambitious song to date, relying heavily on piano parts as opposed to their more traditional alt-country meets grunge guitar heavy sound. Yes, it's ambitious, and dark by even cut*off standards, but most importantly, the song works. It's eerie, yet in its own way, fun. My curiousity level for the next album is skyrocketing.