Friday, December 31, 2010

No Lucky Thirteen This Monday

That's right, there will not be a Lucky Thirteen playlist published this Monday. The playlist will most likely be posted on Tuesday.

That doesn't mean you shouldn't return to the blog on Monday. In fact, I have 40 good reasons for you to visit Ghost of Blind Lemon this Monday. I've been hard at work at compiling the top 40 local tracks of 2010, and the podcast should, if all goes well, debut Monday. So you're wondering who will be number one? You'll just have to wait. I'm the only one who knows; not even the artist with the number one slot knows. The results will be revealed this Monday, so have a wonderful New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, and I'll be back Monday with the results.

Addendum to New Year's Eve List

Because of the "other things" I'm working on today, I have to make a confession: I took the lazy road on listing shows and listed only what I found in my Facebook event invites. Interestingly enough, there are two VERY major shows I overlooked.

  1. Old 97's/Whiskey Folk Ramblers/The O's (House of Blues)

  2. Centro-matic/Slobberbone/RTB2 (Kessler Theater)

I have probably left out some other important shows, so please post any other shows that I've overlooked under the comments section.

New Year's Eve Plans

I'm working on something really big for you, my readers, so I'm just listing your best options for tonight. Thanks to everyone who supported me in 2010, and keep reading and supporting local music in 2011. And now, here are your show recommendations:

  • Telegraph Canyon/Air Review/Smile Smile (Sons of Hermann Hall)
    Take note, this show has moved from Dada to Sons of Hermann Hall.

  • Spector 45/The Marfalites (The Bone)
    This show also features the official Deep Ellum ball drop.

  • Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights/Somebody's Darling/Larry Gee (Granada Theater)

  • Ishi/El Ten Eleven/Binary Sunrise/Romp Almighty (Trees)

  • Boys Named Sue/Tweed EQ/DJ Cheyenne (LaGrange)

  • Bravo, Max!/The Roomsounds (Lakewood Bar & Grill)

  • Hall Or Oates New Year's Eve Party (Double-Wide)
    I'm not sure how this is happened, but Hall & Oates have had quite a resurgence lately. If you're wanting to ring in the new year with some H&O done by local musicians, here's your show.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Eleventh Day of Christmas

Wow, not many Days of Christmas. Thanks to all who have participated, and congratulations to yesterday's winner, who will be seeing Telegraph Canyon, Air Review, and Smile Smile at Dada this New Year's Eve. And in case you were wondering, the correct answer to yesterday's question was "Pastel Lights". Air Review did "Chasing Corporate"; Smile Smile did "Truth on Tape"; and Telegraph Canyon did "Shake Your Fist". That left "Pastel Lights" by Ishi, and they'll play New Year's Eve at Trees, not Club Dada. But you already knew that, didn't you?

Since today is my "Eleventh Day of Christmas", what better thing to give on Day 11 than tickets to Eleven Hundred Springs? They'll play January 14th at Granada Theater, and this band is a must see for fans of genuine country music. All you have to do to win is name any track from their latest CD, This Crazy Life. And yes, I will accept the name of ANY track from that CD. First one to email me at and include the name of one of those songs in the subject line wins. Good luck, my readers!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Tenth Day of Christmas

Congratulations to yesterday's winner of the Nicholas Altobelli CD/poster prize pack.

Today's prize comes courtesy of the fine folks from Club Dada. As I'm sure every fan of the local music scene has heard, Dada will be reopening with Josh Florenece (City Tavern) at the helm. The club is even undergoing a redesign that will improve the layout of the venue, and from the pics I've seen, it's going to look super nice. The venue will reopen this New Year's Eve with a show featuring Telegraph Canyon, Air Review, and Smile Smile.

Below I have listed four songs, one from each of the bands playing at the New Year's Eve show, and one song from an artist NOT playing the Dada NYE show.

"Chasing Corporate"
"Pastel Lights"
"Shake Your Fist"
"Truth on Tape"

The first person to email me at with the name of the song from an artist not playing the show wins a pair of tickets. Good luck.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Ninth Day of Christmas

Congratulations to my two winners of the Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights tickets. If you don't have your tickets yet, might I recommend buying them now. The band never fails to deliver live, and I'm sure this show will be no exception.

Now, on to today's giveaway...

Today's prize comes from one of my favorite singer-songwriters in the area, Nicholas Altobelli. He's letting me give away a copy of his 2008 CD, Waiting for the Flowers to Bloom, as well as an autographed poster. That way you can show it off to your friends and talk about how you got all this before he was playing in stadiums around the world.

Alright, I'm laying it on a little thick. Besides, his music is much better suited to more intimate venues. But I will say that Mr. Altobelli not only deserves greater recognition throughout the metroplex, but his music deserves to get out beyond our city limits.

If you want the CD, all you have to do is email me at and spell Nicholas Altobelli's name correctly in the subject line will win. Hey, it's tricker than you think. When he played a showcase of mine at Club Dada almost two years ago, his name was spelled incorrectly in the ads.

Good luck, and watch the spelling!

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Eighth Day of Christmas

I hope all my readers have had a fabulous Christmas or whatever other holiday you may or may not celebrate. Christmas Day may have passed, but Ghost of Blind Lemon still has some sweet gifts to give out. And today's gift is going to be a really, really nice treat.

You're probably wondering what you should do for New Year's Eve. There are certainly more excellent options this year since, well, I honestly can't remember a NYE with so many cool shows. One of the coolest has to be the show featuring Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights and Somebody's Darling at Granada Theater. I saw JT&NL last year at Granada, and it was a wonderfully festive occasion. Mr. Tyler and the gang jammed the night away and kept the audience moving at all times. I'm sure that the band will repeat last year's awesomeness.

That would be an amazing way to start out 2011, right? Well I have not one, but TWO pairs of tickets to give away to the show. Here's what you have to do: send an email to with the name of the album they released on Atlantic Records in the subject line. The first two people to do so will win a pair of tickets. Also, a reminder to those who have already won on a previous "Day of Christmas" that you are not eligible to enter.

Good luck, and send me your emails, and promptly. This will surely go quickly.

The Lucky Thirteen: 12/27/10

I must say that even though 2010 has not ended yet, it appears that 2011 is going to be a killer year for local music. Below I have shared just a few tracks from albums to be released next year that are among my most eagerly anticipated releases.

But first, let's talk about memories, like the corners of my mind. Misty water-colored memories of the way they were. No, there are not going to be any Streisand tunes on the playlist. I will, however, take a few moments to reflect on a few bands that called it quits in 2010.

So here's the deal: the first six tracks on the Lucky Thirteen are by bands that broke up this year, and the last seven give an opportunity to happily look forward to the metroplex's musical future.

Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at and I will gladly remove the track. And if you'd actually like to be on the playlist, you can use the same email address to email me your mp3's. If I like the song, then odds are it'll wind up on a playlist.

  1. "Infatuations Never Last", The Slack
    It appears that The Slack doesn't last either. The band made no fanfare, fading out quietly with their final show being an opening gig for Cas Haley. Fortunately, lead singer Chris Holt has continued releasing solo CDs. In fact, A Cosmic Joke is easily one of my favorite CDs of the year.

  2. "Evil on the Highway", Dove Hunter
    Quincy Holloway is easily one of my favorite drummers in the metroplex. Now that Dove Hunter is gone, I'm wondering what project he'll take on next. If anyone knows, feel free to pass that info my way.

  3. "Need a Release", the cut*off
    After about eight years together, the cut*off played their final show this past May. The band not only featured surprisingly sharp lyrics set to a Pixies meet Neil Young backdrop, but the members are some of the coolest, nicest musicians around.

  4. "Undercover", Bridges and Blinking Lights
    It seems that the trend this year was for bands to quietly break up without an official farewell show. Personally, I prefer having the farewell show, but that's just me. Here's another band that opted to skip the farewell show.

  5. "Fine Line", Macon Greyson
    The band has never announced the breakup, but I have it on good word that Macon Greyson are no more. Here's a track from their Uneasy CD. In case you were wondering, yes, Cindy Chaffin's blog is named after this song.

  6. "Echo and the Pass", Hendrick
    In my countdown of favorite local songs of last year, "Echo and the Pass" took the number one slot. So what does the band do for an encore? Nothing apparently, as the band broke up. There was supposed to be a farewell show, but the band didn't even make it to the farewell show. What a shame.

  7. "Knife Fight", Calhoun
    Enough looking back now, let's get our first taste of 2011. Calhoun's Heavy Sugar should be released early this year, and this will satisfy anyone's sweet tooth for catchy pop tunes.

  8. "We Will All Be Changed", Seryn
    I finally experienced my first Seryn show recently. There has been a lot of hype surrounding the band, and after seeing them, I can tell you that should believe the hype. I don't even know where to begin in describing how amazing the band is. I do know this: you'll start seeing my face at several of their shows in 2011.

  9. "Save Your Breath", Camille Cortinas
    Almost five years after Camille's first full length with Fishing for Comets, here "solo" CD should come out this year. Of course, I thought she'd have an album in 2010, but according to her, it will be released in 2011.

  10. "We'll Go Walkin'", The O's
    Many local CDs will be released next year, and of course everything is available for download. I even feel safe in saying there will be a healthy number of local vinyl releases in 2011. But how many bands will be able to claim release in all of the previously mentioned formats PLUS 8-track? Only The O's.

  11. "Barn Burner", The Roomsounds
    I'm not sure when in 2011 the band will release a CD, but I'm fairly certain it will happen. Also, keep your eyes on the lookout for a cool show featuring The Roomsounds. Soon. Very soon.

  12. "Coffee at Midnight", The Red 100's
    The Red 100's have just started to make their mark on the local music scene. I feel safe in saying that this will be an even bigger year for The Red 100's.

  13. "Shivonne", Menkena
    January 28th. Kessler Theater. CD release for With You I'll Travel. Kessler Theater. Also featuring Luna Matto and Daniel Folmer. Be there. No excuses.

Local Edge Playlist: 12/26/10

Tonight's episode of The Local Edge with Mark featured Pete Freedman, music editor of the Dallas Observer, taking over the musical selections for the night.

"Ruded", Final Club
"Take My Advice", Wild Party
"We're Not Talking to Any More Lawyers", Analog Rebellion
"Beautiful Girl", Mr. Sleaze
"Sal√£o Flamingo II", Branches feat. Sunnybrook
"Heart of Steel", Year of the Tiger
"Marnie", Novaak
"Worlds Destroyed", Mind Spiders
"Sociopath", Kimberly
"All Night Long", South San Gabriel

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Seventh Day of Christmas

We are officially past the halfway mark on the Twelve Days of Christmas. Congratulations go out to all the winners, and I hope all of you have taken advantage of the free downloads from Rahim Quazi as well as Charming Gardeners. Now, what do you say we do a little giveaway? I thought you wouldn't mind.

Today's gift comes from the lovely people at Opening Bell Coffee. If you are a fan of acoustic, singer-songwriter music, you're undoubtedly familiar with the venue. Pascale Hall and the rest of the OBC crew are going to celebrate the seven year anniversary of the coffee house. This is no small feat, especially considering that Dallas is much more of a rock town than it is a place for introspective songwriter fare. But OBC has withstood the test of time, thanks to good coffee, friendly staff, and a healthy dose of the best acoustic music from local folks as well as touring acts. Simply put, Opening Bell Coffee is a slice of singer-songwriter heaven.

Pascale was kind enough to give me two $10 gift certificates to give away on the blog. All you have to do is put the name of your favorite act you saw play there this year in the subject line of the email. The first two emails received at will win. Oh, a little reminder: if you've won a previous contest, please do not enter. I'm looking for only one winner per Twelve Days of Christmas.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Sixth Day of Christmas

As previously stated, the original goal was to have Day 12 land on Christmas day. That was before I missed both days of the past weekend, meaning today is Day 6 and not Day 8. The original goal was to do a giveaway regarding the new Eight Track Museum being opened on Christmas day. Get it? Day 8 - Eight Track... pretty clever, huh?

My concern is that doing the giveaway of the new Day 8 (this Thursday) might be too late to get the prize to the winner. So instead, the Eight Track Museum giveaway happens today. Besides, if you squint just right, a 6 can kind of look like an 8, you know?

Anyways, here's some info you should know about the museum. The man behind the museum, T Bucks Burnett, has been a fixture of Dallas and the music scene ever since I can remember. He was the band behind the Fourteen Records store from 1988 through 1995, and also has a band called The Volares. He's also known for his love of the 8-track. I got to speak to the man about what he called the "black sheep" of the physical forms of music media. I wondered why he had such a love for the eight track. His first response? "It's sexy and cute". He also views it as a much neglected part of music history, a problem he's looking to rectify by opening the museum.

The museum opens on Christmas Day, and admission is $10. While I'm not giving away tickets to get into the museum, what I can do is offer a $20 gift certificate to use at the museum's gift shop. There you can buy t-shirts and other music related memorabilia. NOTE: the gift certificate is ONLY valid on opening day, so only try to win if you're going to attend Christmas day.

Speaking of 8-tracks, there will be a limited edition 8-track by an Idol Records artist coming out this coming February. The first person to email me at with the name of that artist in the subject line wins the gift certificate. Good luck!

The Lucky Thirteen: 12/21/10

Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at and I will gladly remove the track. And if you'd actually like to be on the playlist, you can use the same email address to email me your mp3's. If I like the song, then odds are it'll wind up on a playlist.

With all the legal mumbo jumbo out of the way, let's listen to some tunes and try to get into the holiday spirit, okay?

  1. "Christmas Time Is Here", Chomsky

  2. "Waiting on Christmas", The Adventures of Jet
    I suppose I could do a Christmas playlist and not feature any tunes from Electric Ornaments, but it just wouldn't be right. Here are two of my faves from the CD.

  3. "My Christmas List", Scott Riegel
    I first saw Mr. Riegel perform at Bryan Street Tavern along with The O's and Whiskey Glass Eye (aka Slobberbone), and there's a certain charm to this 17 year old musician that has me highly curious about where he'll go next musically. For now, enjoy this fun acoustic Christmas ditty.

  4. "What I Always Wanted", Chris Holt

  5. "Christmas (Doesn't Have to Be So Bad)", THe BAcksliders
    I'm lacking anything witty or insightful to say. I like Chris Holt. I like THe BAcksliders. I like these songs. Ok, on to the next song...

  6. "Merry Christmas Now", Rahim Quazi
    I hope everyone has enjoyed my gift of the Rahim Quazi mp3's. What, you haven't downloaded the tracks yet? Click here and get yourself some good tunes.

  7. "Winter Wonderland in Dub", Clay Pendergrass
    This is admittedly a rather long track, but I recommend sitting yourself down, relaxing, and allow yourself the time to appreciate this hypnotic gem from Mr. Pendergrass.

  8. "Here It Is Christmas Time", Old 97's
    Dear Santa, I've been a good blogger (for the most part). Could you leave me a pair of Old 97's New Year's Eve tickets in my stocking?

  9. "Santa Baby", Smile Smile

  10. "Silent Night", Smile Smile
    Smile Smile has had quite a good year, and Truth on Tape was easily one of my favorite CDs of the year. I figured it'd be nice to have a double dose of Smile Smile.

  11. "Run Rudolph Run", Reverend Horton Heat
    Definitely one of the most rocking local music Christmas tunes ever. One would expect no less from The Rev.

  12. "Christmas Eve", Salim Nourallah
    There's nothing that'll get someone into the Christmas spirit than hearing Salim sing "Why can't we cheat death?". Merry Christmas!!!

  13. "Christmas Time", Black Tie Dynasty
    After that last track, I figured it was either hand out Prozacs or let you hear this song. For my money, this tune is the ultimate Christmas party song. Turn it up everyone, you'll know it's Christmas time because you won't be able to fight it.

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Fifth Day of Christmas

Congratulations to last week's winner for the Good Records gift certificate. As you may have noticed, the pattern of ending on Christmas day has been derailed. Not to worry, there will still be twelve days worth of treats, just on different days than originally anticipated.

Today's treat is from Idol recording artists Charming Gardeners. I feel that their EP released this year slipped under the radar of most of the local music scene. That's a shame, as this group has quite an impressive list of local musicians as members, including Marc Solomon (ex-Clumsy plus the man behind Zound Sounds), Amy Curnow (ex-Shanghai 5), and Wade Cofer (Rose County Fair, Homespun Remedies). Oh, the songs are catchy too. Just listen to "Punchline Afternoon" to see what I'm talking about. Or better yet, download it.

MP3: Charming Gardeners - Punchline Afternoon

Local Edge Playlist: 12/19/10

For those expecting to see Days 5 and 6 of Christmas over the weekend, sorry. Things got hectic and well, no gifts this weekend. I hope Santa doesn't hold it against me and leave a lump of coal in my stocking. In the meantime, Mark put on his 2nd annual "It's a Local Edge Christmas, Charlie Brown" episode. Forewarning #1: there will be a notable amount of overlap between his selections and tomorrow's Lucky 13. Forewarning #2: Mark said he played centro-matic's "Fuselage", which I didn't catch. In all fairness, I don't recall him mentioning the BTD song that I know he played. Oh, and for the cover of "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", he gave credit to Junuis Recording, but I did not hear him specify an artist. I think it may be the Dallas Family Band, but don't hold me to that. Anyways, here is what I believe to be the playlist. I promise to give a full refund of the price of this blog entry if I'm wrong.

"What I Always Wanted", Chris Holt
"Santa Baby", Smile Smile
"Jesus Christ", RTB2
"Christmas Swag", LehtMoJoe
"Up on the Housetop", The Rocketboys
"Christmas Time Is Here", Chomsky
"Merry Ex-Mas", GalleryCat
"It's Christmas time", PPT
"Last Christmas", Hendrick
"Angels We Have Heard on High", Quiet Company
"Christmas Time", Black Tie Dynasty
"Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"
"Happy X-Mas (War Is Over)", The Polyphonic Spree

Friday, December 17, 2010

Weekend Plans: 12/17/10

'Twas the weekend before Christmas, but plenty of musician creatures will be stirring around town. Here are some of my top picks of the weekend. And please, if I've forgotten a good show, post it on the comments section.

The O’s/The King Bucks/Rodney Parker & The 50 Peso Reward (Sons of Hermann Hall)
This will probably be a very calm and uneventful show, as neither The O's or The King Bucks are much into partying. Wow, I can't even type that with a straight face. I mean, let's face it, when you look up the word "party", there's a picture featuring John Pedigo and Taylor Young right next to it. The King Bucks certainly are no strangers to partying either. And if you're looking for a country soundtrack to accompany your party, then this is the place to be. Plus, I'm sure The O's will be performing plenty of material from the upcoming CD, Between the Two.
Backside Pick/The Black & Blue/Informant (Hailey’s)
Those who came to last week's showcase were lucky enough to discover The Black & Blue, and based on the reaction of those in attendance, those who saw the band loved the band. I have previously described the band as a unique blend of soul, funk, blues, and rock. In this last showcase, the band also incorporated what I'd call a somewhat psychedelic influence, or at minimum a more progressive, experimental element to the songs. This only increases the level of complexity of trying to explain the band's sound. It also increases the hypnotic charm of the band.
Doug Burr/Shiny Around the Edges/Glen Farris (Lola’s)
I've previously seen Fate Lions listed on this bill, though it appears they are no longer part of the lineup. Still, Doug Burr alone is reason enough to go to Lola's, and Shiny Around the Edges make a nice substitute. Also, is it just me or is this the first SATE show in quite awhile?
Jayson Bales/Elkhart (Poor David’s Pub)
Word is that there will be guest appearance from nationally known singer-songwriters David Wilson and Kate Miner. Even if this is not the case, these two acts are more than worth the price of admission. Jayson Bales manages to write catchy gritty tunes with a somewhat Springsteenesque flair, and Elkhart have managed to create the most gorgeous alt-country soundscapes this city has seen since Pleasant Grove (the band, not the suburb).
Emmeline (Buon Giorno Coffee – Fort Worth)
I only thought there was the one Buon Giorno in Grapevine. Goes to show what I know. This particular location will host the official Fort Worth CD release show for Emmeline. I think it's been awhile since she's done a Fort Worth show, and I believe at one of her last FW shows, one of the bands had a truly unique set of videos in the background of the performance. I doubt she'll incorporate any of those videos in her act, but you should at least ask her about this story if you go tonight.

RTB2/Air Review/Old Snack (Double-Wide)
There was a time when it seemed there was an RTB2 show around every corner. It seems that the duo have been doing fewer shows lately. Air Review, on the other hand, has always spread out their shows fairly sparsely. You can catch both of these acts at this event benefiting The Gladley Center for Adoption. Good music and a good cause. Gotta love it.
Rahim Quazi (Obzeet)
Finally, a good show in the North Dallas area. That doesn't happen nearly often enough. He'll probably do a few new tunes from his upcoming CD Born on a Sunday as well as his Christmas song. Come to think of it, you can download a demo track from the upcoming CD as well as "Merry Christmas Now" right here on Ghost of Blind Lemon. Trust me, you'll want those mp3s in your collection.
41 Gorgeous Blocks/The Light Fantastic/Here Holy Spain/Soviet (Prophet Bar)
I thought that 41 Gorgeous Blocks had broken up years ago; it turns out they're still together and even releasing new music. You can catch the band at Prophet Bar and pick up a CD while you're at it. I'd also recommend getting there early enough for the aggressive yet catchy Here Holy Spain.
Ryan Adams Tribute Night (Opening Bell Coffee)
I have to confess that I've had a hard time getting into Mr. Adams. A large part of that is that I'm still holding a grudge against him for when he referred to the Old 97's as "wannabes with fake Texan accents". Admittedly this was way back in his Whiskeytown days, but I have a very long memory. Still, I know more than a few musicians who think highly of him, including GOBL favorite Nicholas Altobelli, who will be one of the individuals performing his songs at OBC. I'll still recommend this event, but I think that to balance things out, there needs to be a Rhett Miller/Old 97's tribute night. Who's in?

The Fourth Day of Christmas

I have to say, playing Santa Claus is turning out to be a lot of fun. So far, I've given away a pair of Electric Ornaments CDs and a $30 tab for Lochrann's last night (for the record, the Pale Horse/Ronnie Fauss show there last night was amazing). Oh, and don't forget about the pair of Rahim Quazi mp3s that can still be downloaded.

good records logo Pictures, Images and Photos

Today's prize is a $10 gift certificate to Good Records. Whether you want CD or vinyl, new or used, or whatever else your musical heart desires, odds are you'll find it there. I cannot think of another store in town with the quality of merchandise of Good Records. And yes, there's always an abudance of good local music than can be purchased there. Also, don't forget about all the really cool in-store performances, all of which are listed on their website.

So, are you ready to find out what you have to do to win the gift certificate?

I'm not telling you here. Seriously, I'm not. If you want to win the gift certificate, you'll have to get the details on my Facebook page. What, you're not following Ghost of Blind Lemon on Facebook? If you want to win, you need to click here to change that. I'll announce how to win through Facebook between 4 and 5 PM CST. That gives you plenty of time to "like" Ghost of Blind Lemon. Good luck, and keep an eye on your Facebook page!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Third Day of Christmas

Congratulations to yesterday's winner of the $30 tab at Lochrann's. Even if you didn't win, you should still come out tonight and hang with your favorite ghost while watching Pale Horse and Ronnie Fauss.

So maybe you're feeling a little frustrated because you haven't won anything yet. Don't worry, because everyone is a winner today. I have not one, but two mp3s to share from Rahim Quazi. With the possible exception of THe BAcksliders, I'm not sure there's been another act that has gotten as much attention on the blog as Mr. Quazi. Why is that? Rahim is one of the best songwriters in the CD, an individual that deserves to be regarded on the same plane as Salim Nourallah, Doug Burr, and the like. His debut solo album, The Big Black Box, featured such classics as the very catchy "There You Go" and the heartbreak anthem "Coffeebreak". Don't let the melodic or lyrical simplicity of the latter track fool you, as it is one of the most potent tales of lost love I've heard.

But if The Big Black Box hinted at his greatness, Supernatural proved that greatness with undeniable style. The title track is not only one of the catchiest songs I've EVER heard, it's a beautifully inspirational tale that radiates joy from every note of its being. "Gifts and Burdens" and "So Much Better" are moodier and more introspective, yet also remain defiantly optimistic through the darkness. And "You Fool" proves that Mr. Quazi knows how to rock.

Rahim is about to embark on the next chapter of his musical career. His next album, Born on a Sunday, will be released next year. Most of the tracks I've heard exist within that moodier and introspective world, but word on the street is that many of the tracks yet to be debuted showcase his more rock side.

The first track, "I'm Thinking About You", is only a demo from the upcoming album, but it shows that Mr. Quazi hasn't lost one iota of his pop sensibilities. Consider it a nice teaser of what's to come in the next few months. The second track, "Merry Christmas Now", has been a live staple of his holiday season sets and featured on his MySpace, but I don't believe has ever been available to his fans... until now.

Enjoy the tunes, and I'll see you back here tomorrow with another giveaway.

MP3: Rahim Quazi - I'm Thinking About You
MP3: Rahim Quazi - Merry Christmas Now

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Second Day of Christmas

Welcome to Day 2 of my Twelve Days of Christmas. Congratulations to yesterday’s winners, both of whom are receiving a copy of the Electric Ornaments CD compilation.

Today’s gift is courtesy of the fine folks at Wellhouse Co, who are bringing some mighty fine shows to Lochrann’s in Frisco. For those who haven’t been paying attention over the past six months or so, Wellhouse and Spune have brought some first rate local acts to the once musical ghost town of Frisco. Acts that have graced the Lochrann’s stage include Somebody’s Darling, The Happy Bullets, Dove Hunter, Cocky Americans, and The Virgin Wolves. And that’s not even counting Rhett Miller and all the acts at Oysterfest. Personally, I’d recommend following Wellhouse on the Facebook, because you will want to stay in the loop in regards to their shows.

But, I digress…

Wellhouse was kind enough to donate a $30 tab at Lochrann’s, good for food and/or drinks (and yes, that includes drinks with alcohol). There’s not a specific date it has to be used, but I would really, really, REALLY encourage you to take advantage of this offer tomorrow night.

Why tomorrow night, you ask? Fresh off their performance at my showcase at Green Elephant, Pale Horse is performing this Thursday at Lochrann’s. For those who have only seen the band at my most recent showcase, there will be a drummer at this show. So while I must say that the stripped down Pale Horse had a super cool vibe that reminded me of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club’s Howl period, this will be a full on rock show. The opening act will be Ronnie Fauss. His tune “I Can’t Make You Happy” was a big favorite of mine last year, and tunes like “Wish” and “Driving Through Memphis” off of this year’s Mulligan EP show that he’s no one hit wonder.

Want to win this $30 tab? All you have to do is answer this question…

What Pale Horse tune shares its name with a Top 10 hit by Linda Ronstadt? GOBL readers shouldn’t have a hard time figuring this one out, as this particular Pale Horse song has been a staple on the Lucky Thirteen for the past several months.

The first person to email me at with the correct answer in the subject line wins the tab. Good luck!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The First Day of Christmas

Welcome to Day 1 of my Twelve Days of Christmas. There will be no partridges or pear trees given away today. Instead, I have some local Christmas music to give away. In fact, it's arguably the definitive collection of local Christmas tunes. I, of course, am referring to the Electric Ornaments compilation released on Idol Records back in 2000.

Here are just five of the reasons why you should own the CD:

  1. Chomsky's take on the Charlie Brown Christmas classic "Christmas Time is Here" turns the tune from a sappy sentimental song into a fun pop classic that never fails to bring some Christmas cheer into my heart.

  2. "I'll Be Home for Christmas" is the vocal highlight of the CD, with Kim Bonner (Kim Pendleton at the time) pouring her heart into every note, delivering her trademark soulful, impassioned vocal stylings.

  3. If you're needing a little humor thrown into your holiday mix, hear what happens to Deathray Davies on Christmas day due to their naughty behavior. I'm not going to tell you the song title; that'd spoil the surprise.
  4. While McCartney's "A Wonderful Christmas Time" is a rather cheesy overplayed holiday tune, it feels a lot more fun when done by [DARYL].

  5. Are you just tired of cheerful holiday tunes? There's a Pleasant Grove song on here, and heaven knows they don't know how to do cheerful.

Oh, there's also Viva Maxitone covering a song made popular from a cartoon based on a Dr. Seuss story.

The song is You're a Mean One, Mr. ______

The first two people to fill in the blank and send an email to with the correct answer each win a CD.

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Twelve Days of Christmas... GOBL Style

I've pondered different means by which I could grab the attention of my readers and bring in even more hits. I could do a series of interviews with musicians where I give voice to their deepest thoughts. I could do a thought provoking series about the state of the local music scene, both the progress that has been made and the work still do be done. I could even delve into the rich history of Dallas music, examining the glory days of Deep Ellum that started in the mid 90's. For that matter, I could research the Deep Ellum of the 1920's that gave us music from Robert Johnson and Blind Lemon Jefferson.

Or, I could just bribe everyone to read the blog.

Starting tomorrow and ending on Christmas day, I will give something away each and every day on the blog. Some days it may be something as small as an mp3 for everyone to download. Other days, it might be a CD or a gift certificate. You might even wind up with some cool concert tickets. The only way to find out what I'll be giving away is to check into the blog daily. For the actual giveaways (mp3s notwithstanding), read the instructions carefully, and send an email to and you could be the lucky winner! The only other rule I'm going to state is that you cannot win more than once during this period. Again, mp3s don't count. Obviously.

So keep checking in... you never know what treats you'll find on Ghost of Blind Lemon.

The Lucky Thirteen: 12/13/10

Just for the record, next week's playlist will be an all Christmas themed playlist. I am certainly open to suggestions for songs by either bands or fans. You can send your mp3s to and if I like what I hear, odds are it'll wind up on next week's playlist. And as usual, if anyone wishes not to be on the list or be removed, you can use the same email address for those purposes. But seriously, why wouldn't you want your song figured?

  1. "Indian Melody", Calhoun
    After hearing "Knife Fight" on The Local Edge with Mark, I was quite curious to hear more of what the band had been up to. Jordan Roberts was kind enough to send me a mp3 copy of Heavy Sugar, and this may be my favorite album the band has ever put out. Lead singer Tim Locke describes the effort as more of a return to pop. The genre of pop has been maligned over the years, particularly due to the fact that pop has become synonymous with overproduced, cookie cutter top 40 songs. This track serves as a reminder that pop, done correctly, is a most enjoyable thing.

  2. "We'll Go Walkin'", The O's
    I must say, I'm proud to have debuted the new O's track on my blog this past Tuesday. The album it's from, Between the Two, will be released in February. The Calhoun and O's CDs are two of my most anticipated releases of 2011, and both acts feature Taylor Young. Coincidence? I think not.

  3. "Allison", Luna Matto
    I may not have an exact record of which songs I've listened to the most within the past month, but this track would certainly have to be in the top 5.

  4. "Try Try Try", Spector 45
    Many years, it has been a struggle to find good New Year's Eve shows. This year, there is an overabundance. Just for starters, Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights headline at Granada Theater, Air Review headlines at Dada, and Ishi headlines at Trees. The Spector 45/Marfalites lineup at The Bone has gotten less press than most of the other fine options, but I did not want the show to go ignored.

  5. "Coffee at Midnight", The Red 100's
    Finally had the pleasure of meeting Robbie D. Love from The Red 100's. He's quite a talented guitarist, and that talent can be audibly heard in the Red 100's. It's not easy as an instrumental band to keep a listener's attention, but if tracks like this are any indication, The Red 100's will have no difficulty commanding their fan's respect.

  6. "Silent Night", Smile Smile
    Here's a little holiday tune from Smile Smile to get you in the Christmas spirit.

  7. "Flower on the Wall", Kerri Arista
    I've previously included her track "Walk Beside Me" on the Lucky 13, a very sweet and beautiful song. Kerri has just released a new album, 50 Different Ways, and I have a hunch that her name will become a quite familiar one in the singer-songwriter world next year. This is a small taste of what her album has to offer.
  8. "District County Court", Daniel Folmer
    I don't have any special explanation for why I included this song, other than the fact that I like it. That's a good enough reason, right?

  9. "to the 9's", hormones
    A few weeks ago, when I asked for readers to recommend tracks for the Lucky 13, I received a couple of requests for the band hormones (the band prefers the name not to be capitalized). Since I did not have any mp3s of the band at the time, that was a request that obviously could not be fulfilled. Jordan Williams finally emailed me this track, and it's a quite interesting an unique track. I mean that in a good way.

  10. "The Spilling Blood Child", RTB2
    RTB2 will play Saturday night at Double-Wide for the fifth annual Orphanage benefit, along with Air Review and Old Snack.

  11. "End of the Planet", The Adventures of Jet
    Sometimes I randomly type in band names and see if Grooveshark has anything by that artist. Sometimes I find myself pleasantly surprised by what's in their catalog. Case in point: Grooveshark has both Adventures of Jet CDs available in their entirity. No Bobgoblin yet, but that's still pretty amazing.

  12. "...Name of Every Star", Red Monroe
    I had a conversation with Chris Demiglio of the Demigs recently, and the band Red Monroe came up in conversation. Both of us thought that the band had broken up and faded into oblivion. This is an instance where I'm glad to be wrong. The band has new material available on bandcamp, and it's a pay what you feel like deal. I suspect there'll be an official album release early next year. I'll let you know more as I do.

  13. "You're No Good", Pale Horse
    Finally, I'd like to take the opportunity to give out some thank you's. Thanks to Travis Behl and the entire staff of the Green Elephant for letting me host my showcase there and making me feel welcome. Thanks to Pale Horse, for playing even minus a drummer, and thanks also to THe BAcksliders and The Black & Blue. And finally, thanks to everyone who came out and supported the showcase and the bands. Let's do this again soon, okay?

Also, keep your eye on the blog, because later today, I'll be making an announcement that you're going to want to hear. Trust me.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Local Edge Playlist: 12/12/10

On tonight's episode, Mark counted down his top 10 local albums of the year. These are his choices of albums, as well as the songs he played from each of the albums.

  1. Night & Day, The Secret Handshake
    "Fresh Start"

  2. Truth on Tape, Smile Smile
    "Truth on Tape"

  3. Novels, The Burning Hotels
    "Boy or Girl"

  4. Suburban Nature, Sarah Jaffe

  5. O Ye Devastator, Doug Burr
    "Red, Red"

  6. Devil's Nest, Lalagray
    "Devil's Nest"
    "Bag of Bones (Recorded Live)"

  7. Through the Trees, Ishi
    "Our Time"
    "New York Charm (Recorded Live)"

  8. Spooky Folk, Spooky Folk
    "My Niagra Heart"

  9. When We Were Wild, The Orbans
    "New Dress"
    "Like a Liar (Recorded Live)"

  10. The Beaten Sea, The Beaten Sea
    "Lonesome Tune"

Friday, December 10, 2010

Weekend Plans: 12/10/10

Normally, this is the time of week where I list all the best local shows happening on Friday and Saturday. There is often an accidental omission of a show or two on my part, but it is not my intention to deliberately leave out good shows. Well, normally that's the case. Today, however, I break that rule. Today, I feel there's only one Friday show worth mentioning. And yes, I'm more than a little biased. The Ghost of Blind Lemon showcase at Green Elephant is the one show you need to attend tonight. I can honestly say that I feel I've gotten the three best live acts in Dallas under one roof: The Black & Blues, Pale Horse, and THe BAcksliders. If you want to know more of my thoughts on these acts, click here for my very detailed opinion on each band.

Here's a few other things you should know about tonight's show. The show starts at 10:00 with The Black & Blues, and trust me, you need to get there early enough to catch their entire set. At 11:00, Pale Horse will be doing an acoustic set. And at midnight, THe BAcksliders will be playing their final show of 2010. There are no additional dates mentioned on the website, and Chris Bonner posted a Facebook message stating this would be their last show until March. So if you don't want to go into severe BAcksliders withdrawal, you would be wise to come to tonight's show.

Okay, okay, I'll mention one more Friday show. Emmeline is playing at Mokah, along with Arielle Page and Stephanie Walker. It's an early show, and you should be done in time to make it over to Green Elephant for Black & Blues. Emmeline has even declared my showcase as the official afterparty for the Mokah show, so listen to what she said.

Now, for some Saturday shows:

Rahim Quazi & The Supernaturals (LaGrange)
This is a brunch show, but if you're not too partied out after my showcase, this is sure to be a lot of fun. He'll likely perform a mix of Rahim classics plus tracks from his upcoming CD. As for the performance itself, the one constant in his set is variety. Mr. Quazi is constantly changing songs in the live format, and it's always interesting to see what new twists he brings to his songs.
Binary Sunrise/Emotion & The Cosmos/GalleryCat (City Tavern)
Mo Brown may be best known for her background vocals with Jonathan Tyler & Northern Lights, but she gets her rightful opportunity for center stage with Emotion & The Cosmos. Her track "Neptune's Rising" is a rocking, soulful, and insightful jam that while it may not showcase her vocals as much, it's a quite captivating and intelligent track. Binary Sunrise and Gallery Cat round out this bill that is likely going to have the audience moving and shaking what their mother gave them.
Camille Cortinas/Salim Nourallah/Jay Gummer (Opening Bell Coffee)
GoBL readers should certainly be familiar with the names of Mrs. Cortinas and Mr. Nourallah. You may not know, however, that tonight's show is a fundraiser for the Samaritan Inn, Collin County's largest homeless shelter. So if you like to give and receive, then tonight you can give to this worthy cause and your eardrums will receive a lovely treat.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

O Yes! Brand New Song from The O's

In a conversation I had with Taylor Young over two years ago, he mentioned in passing this little side project he was starting with John Pedigo called The O's. I doubt either of us at the time knew exactly how big the duo would become. The band has become a fixture in the local music scene, and even toured Europe last year to promote their debut album, We Are The O's.

The band's follow up CD, Between the Two, will be released in February on Idol Records as a download, CD, record, and 8-track (yes, you read that correctly). While you'll have another two months to wait to get the whole album, the first single hits iTunes today. "We'll Go Walkin'" is exactly what you'd expect from the band: good banjo picking courtesy of Mr. Pedigo, nice harmonies on the chorus, and a very catchy melody. For the record, the track was produced by Stuart Sikes, who has produced more good local songs than I could on both hands and feet.

Erv Kerwalis of Idol was kind enough to allow me to share this track with my readers. You can stream the track below and give it a listen. Once you fall in love with the song as will inevitably happen, you can use the link below to order the song on iTunes.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Lucky Thirteen: 12/6/10

As you might have noticed, I'm just a little bit excited about my showcase this Friday at Green Elephant. For those who somehow missed my post and tweets, here's the deal: THe BAcksliders, Pale Horse, and The Black & Blues are performing a showcase of mine this Friday at The Green Elephant. And not to brag or anything, but this is going to be seriously amazing. I am super proud of this lineup, and I hope you will come and check it out.

But back to the playlist. This week, I'm spotlighting not only the artists playing my showcase this Friday, but an assortment of acts that I have had the privilege of performing at my showcases.

Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at and I will gladly remove the track. And if you'd actually like to be on the playlist, you can use the same email address to email me your mp3's. If I like the song, then odds are it'll wind up on a playlist.

  1. "Regular Nights", THe BAcksliders
    This is the second showcase of mine featuring THe BAcksliders. They also performed for the GOBL one year anniversary show at Club Dada in 2008.

  2. "You're No Good", Pale Horse
    Pale Horse has also had experience with GOBL showcases, having performed this past May at my Cavern showcase.

  3. "Thinkuboutmi", Keite Young
    Unfortunately, I do not have any Black & Blues songs to share with you. I'll do the next best thing, and feature a solo track from B&B lead singer Keite Young. This guy has a serious set of pipes on him, and you need to get there good and early so that you don't miss this band.

  4. "What I Always Wanted", Chris Holt
    I love it when I get to be the first to debut a song. Erv from Idol Records shared this new Christmas track from Mr. Holt, and I'm stoked to let my readers hear it now! And just so you know, Chris performed at the first GOBL showcase, which was held December 29, 2007 at Opening Bell Coffee.

  5. "Borrowed Time", The Monco Poncho
    The Monco Poncho headlined my first showcase at Lakewood Bar & Grill...

  6. "The Queen Himself", Fate Lions
    And Fate Lions headlined my last showcase at that venue.

  7. "Rocketships", Menkena
    Menkena helped me ring in the second year anniversary of the blog with a show at City Tavern.

  8. "Romance Tried to Kill Me", Cocky Americans
    Cocky Americans were on the same Cavern bill with Pale Horse. Roomsounds played that night as well.

  9. "Your Virgo", Lovie
    Lovie has played two showcases of mine. The first was an Opening Bell Coffee showcase, mere days after the band won Quick magazine's 2008 Battle of the Bands. The second time, they played at Lakewood Bar & Grill along with The Felons and The Burgundys.

  10. "We've Had Everything", The O's
    The O's also performed at my two year anniversary show at City Tavern. And no, you didn't miss out on the 3 year anniversary show. I didn't organize one. I guess I'll have to make #4 even bigger to make up for it.

  11. "Buyer's Remorse", Les Americains
    Here's yet another in the long list of acts that played my Lakewood Bar & Grill showcases.

  12. "Slideshows", Rose County Fair
    John Pedigo has done plenty of my showcases, both as half of The O's as well as this band of his. RCF played both of my showcases at Dada, both my one year anniversary show as well as my January 2009 showcase that also featured The O's, Erik Neff, and Nicholas Altobelli.

  13. "She Falls", Rahim Quazi
    I believe Mr. Quazi holds the record for most GOBL showcases. He was played solo at my first showcase, then Rahim & The Supernaturals performed the Dada 1 year anniversary show, and he also played one of my Lakewood Bar & Grill shows. And I have a VERY strong feeling that he'll be adding a fourth show to his musical resume. Curious? Good.

Local Edge Playlist: 12/5/10

"Cut the Lights", Manned Missiles
"Virgin Eyes", Hoyotoho
"to the 9's", hormones (NOTE: I'm normally very picky about capitalization and grammar, but the band insists on doing lower case rock)
"Stories", Heard
"Allison", The Burning Hotels
"Rome", The Fox and the Bird
"River Song", Seryn
"You're No Good", Pale Horse
"Truth or Fiction", The Slack
"Two Tone", Sundress
"Just Wanna Try", Luna Matto
"Black Swans", Datahowler
"For All I Know", Charming Gardeners

Finally, thanks to Mark for the kind mention on the show, and thanks for all the cool tunes like these that you bring to the airwaves.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Weekend Plans: 12/3/10

Dovetail (Banana Republic - Galleria Mall)
Personally, I'm not one for mall shopping, but having a good band play in a mall is enough to make me want to endure the madness of Christmas mall shopping. The band starts early, at about 5, and will have you out in plenty of time for whatever other good show you want to see tonight.
Kim Lenz & The Jaguars/Spector 45 (LaGrange)
Is rockabilly dead? I'm not talking about psychobilly; that is obviously quite well and alive. I'm talking about pure, unadulterated rockabilly in its truest form. It has seemed as if the genre had just about faded into oblivion, particularly in the world of local music. Ms. Lenz, perhaps one of the best known locals ever within that genre, is helping to bring life back into rockabilly. And while Spector 45 is more greaser punk than rockabilly, their electric set will make an excellent opening act for Ms. Lenz
3 Rivers Alice/Rahim Quazi & The Supernaturals (The Grotto)
Mr. Quazi is a longtime GOBL favorite, and he's hard at work on the follow-up to 2008's Supernatural. If you ask really nicely, he might play you a new song or two. And for those not in the know, The Grotto is in Fort Worth, located in what used to be Lola's on the Stockyards.
Kirby Brown/The Roomsounds/Becky Middleton/SeaStroke/Bradley Wiley (Prophet Bar)
Christmas is upon us, and that means tacky, cheesy Christmas sweater season is here. This show celebrates those fashion no-no's, with plenty of music. Most notable on the lineup are The Roomsounds, who walk the line between 60's classic rock and 90's alternative pop, and Becky Middleton, a piano based singer-songwriter with a seriously intense voice.
Andrew Delaney and the Horse You Rode In On/Four Left Turns/Jessie Frye (City Tavern)
I've yet to see either Mr. Delaney or Ms. Frye, but both singer-songwriters have impressed me with their intelligent and catchy tunes. The two would seem an unlikely fit on one bill. Andrew's music lies within the alt-countryish realm, whereas Jessie is a perfect fit for fans of Sarah McLachlan, Natalie Merchant, and the like. I don't know the middle act; perhaps they somehow form a bridge between the two sounds to make the transition between the two easier.
The King Bucks (Adair's)
If this band keeps playing there so frequently, it's only a matter of time before the Adair's patrons get out the marker and start writing on the band members. Seriously though, ears on the band and markers off the musicians.

Epic Ruins/Calhoun/The Orbans (Lola’s)
Ask, and you shall receive. On this week's Lucky Thirteen, I hinted to the members of Calhoun that I'd love to get a copy of their upcoming CD, Heavy Sugar. Guess what I found in my virtual mailbox? If killer hooks are your thing (and they're definitely mine), then you're level of love for Calhoun is going to go through the roof. Speaking of CD's, this is the CD release show for Epic Ruins. The Orbans round out this bill that is THE destination for everyone in Funkytown. Frankly, this is a lineup worthy of a trip to FW.
A Spune Christmas ’10 (Hailey’s)
Telegraph Canyon will most likely be the biggest draw in this larger than life showcase (click here for the Facebook invite details), but as far as I'm concerned, Doug Burr will be the musical highlight of this show. From what I've heard of O Ye Devastator, it's filled with all the usual trademarks of Mr. Burr's music: haunting vocals, beautiful melodies, and well-crafted stories. Alas, I'm only speaking from the samples I've heard of the CD, as I don't own it. Hmm... I asked for Calhoun's CD and got it. I wonder...
Bravo, Max!/Possessed by Paul James/Horsethief/Parallel Play (The Prophet Bar)
Call it a hunch, but I have a feeling that 2011 is going to be a huge year for Bravo, Max! Word of mouth about the band is growing, thanks in no part to a live experience that is hard to classify, but even harder not to like. The sound is certainly eclectic, blending elements of alt-country, world beat, and other sounds that I can't even put my finger on. Don't wait until next year to see them. If you see them now, you can claim that you were a fan before everyone else caught on.
Summer Ames/Paul Slavens/Garrett Owen (Opening Bell Coffee)
Although Summer's CD, Complicated Daydream, was released last year, it seems as if the momentum for her music has really built this year. And with her now being added to Kirtland's roster, expect her following to grow even further. Paul Slavens holds the middle slot. I'm hoping he'll perform tunes from his CD, but I won't object if he does his typical make up songs for donations schtick because that's a lot of fun as well. Garrett Owen opens the show, and he's one of the few truly great male vocalists in this town. He's also a seriously good guitarist, and a great songwriter as well. In short, if you like singer-songwriters, this is where you need to be.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Is a Picture Worth 1000 Words?

If so, then thanks to Bristen Lee Phillips for "writing the following story."

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Lucky Thirteen: 11/29/10

Due to difficulties with Grooveshark, today's playlist has been severely delayed. Before reading comments on the artists, I'd like to point out that two artists on this week's Lucky Thirteen, namely Phoenix Hart and Ronnie Fauss, have Black Monday specials, so hurry to take advantage!!!

Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at and I will gladly remove the track. And if you'd actually like to be on the playlist, you can use the same email address to email me your mp3's. If I like the song, then odds are it'll wind up on a playlist.

  1. "Christmas (Doesn't Have to Be So Bad)", THe BAcksliders
    I hope everyone has seen the major showcase announcement on the blog featuring this band as the headliner. Here's a little Christmas song from the band. Now that Thanksgiving is over, I feel it's safe to start dusting off the Christmas songs.

  2. "District County Court", Daniel Folmer
    I'm not sure whether the proper artist name for this song is Daniel Folmer or Danny Rush. I just know that I'm digging this more rockin' country side of the man.

  3. "Until We Meet Again", Phoenix Hart
    While at Emmeline's CD party (I'll discuss the event more later), I had the privilege of meeting Ms. Hart. She's every bit as likable as her tunes. Speaking of those tunes, you can download her album Save Love for a mere $4.99 until Tuesday, 2:00 A.M. CST. Trust me, that's a steal that you don't want to miss out on.

  4. "Do You Love Me?", The Bat Mastersons
    Thanks to my friend Michelle Stockton for giving me a copy of Tales from The Edge Vol. 7 & 8, featuring this Bat Mastersons classic that I hadn't heard since it came out in 1993. It was a nice blast from the past.

  5. "8587 (Birthday)", Sore Losers
    Nic Hernandez requested the duo's "Epic Outro" a few weeks back. Now I'm spotlighting my personal favorite of Sore Losers.

  6. "When We Were Wild", The Orbans
    The Orbans will open for the Epic Ruins CD release show at Lola's this Saturday. Calhoun, also featured on this week's Lucky Thirteen, completes the bill.

  7. "Clara", Paul Slavens
    Also this Saturday night, Opening Bell Coffee has quite the stellar lineup with Summer Ames, Garrett Owen, and Mr. Slavens. No word on whether he'll be performing songs from Alphabet Girls, Vol. I, making up songs for donations, or both.

  8. "Virtue and Vice", The Virgin Wolves
    Ah, more good shows... this one taking place this Thursday at Rubber Gloves, with Deep Snapper and Paper Robot opening.

  9. "Apocalypse (A Love Story)", Calhoun
    I've heard the band's new track, "Knife Fight", on The Local Edge with Mark. I'd love to post that song on a Lucky Thirteen, but alas, I don't have the song. Do you hear that, members of Calhoun? I'd love to play songs from your upcoming album, Heavy Sugar, but I don't have it yet. Maybe you can fix that problem? And no, I'm not too proud to hit up bands for CDs if the music is awesome enough.

  10. "Shivonne", Menkena
    Menkena will opening for Birds & Batteries this Thursday at Lochrann's in Frisco. While you're there, bug Jimmy and ask him when the album's coming out.

  11. "A Hundred Years", Emmeline
    A few times a year, a show takes place that is more than a nice show, but transcends into a genuinely beautiful experience. Emmeline's CD release was one of those nights. This is a very talented young lady, and I'm proud to have been a part in helping her music get out to the public. Well done, Emmeline, well done.

  12. "Barn Burner", The Roomsounds
    What happens when you mix The Roomsounds, Becky Middleton, and ugly Christmas sweaters? Find out Friday night at The Prophet Bar.

  13. "Driving Through Memphis", Ronnie Fauss
    Ronnie's CDs are being sold for a 2-for-1 price; click here to take advantage of this opportunity. This track is from his new CD, Mulligan, and will most likely be played Saturday when he opens for Grant Jones and the Pistol Grip Lassos at the Kessler Theater this Friday Thursday.

December 10th: The Official Announcement

A while back, I informed you that you needed to save the date of December 10th. Well, now I'm thrilled to announce the lineup for this Ghost of Blind Lemon showcase being held at The Green Elephant. This is an incredibly special showcase for me, as these three acts are currently my favorite live bands in the metroplex. I'm not just saying this because they're the bands in this showcase. Instead, I intentionally decided to gather these three favorites of mine in one lineup. If you're familiar with these bands, you will understand my high level of enthusiasm. And yet if you're not familiar with one (or even all) of the bands, this would be a fabulous opportunity to check out some killer tunes.

The Black & Blues start the night off in style. Most of my readers are probably not familiar with this band, and it is my mission to change that. The band manages to incorporate elements of soul, funk, rock, and yes, blues, and assemble these parts into something new and fresh. The band's co-vocalists, Keite Young and Goldie Furnow, bring a soulful vocal intensity to all the tracks. Is this music easy to classify? Not in the least. But if you're looking for a band that is not looking to follow the latest trend but instead start it, then The Black and Blues are a must see.

Up next on the lineup is Pale Horse, a band that, in my book, has defined 2010 possibly more than any other act. I have never seen lead singer J.R. Denson deliver less than 110% on any vocal performance. As for lyrics, the band challenges the audience with unconventional lyrical topics regarding religion, politics, war, and family matters. While emotionally intense, with songs as catchy as "You're No Good" and "Will You Be There", Pale Horse delivers thought provoking messages in a manner that is never preachy. Like The Black & Blues, this music is not easy to classify. It's equal parts southern rock and psychedelia, with slight hints of reggae and blues infused into the sonic mix. And the live show? "Wow" is the only word that comes close to describing it.

Finally, THe BAcksliders wrap up the evening in true rock and roll style, a favorite of mine ever since the first time I saw the band in 2006. The band has won Dallas Observer Music Awards in both the Blues and Hard Rock categories, yet neither category is really the right fit for the band. There are definite blues elements in many songs for sure, and THe BAcksliders definitely rock quite hard, especially in a live setting. The truth, however, is that THe BAcksliders are the last of a dying breed: the rock and roll band. Not alt-rock, not indie-rock, not post-progressive-emo-death-core-rock, but good old fashioned rock and roll. It's a simple formula, yes, but executed in a first rate manner thanks in large part to the incredible vocal talent of Kim Bonner and the severely underrated guitar skills of Chris Bonner, one of the finest in the area. If you're ready to rock, then you're ready for THe BAcksliders, simple as that.

So here's a quick recap:

Date: December 10th
Place: The Green Elephant
Bands: THe BAcksliders, Pale Horse, The Black & Blues
Level of Awesomeness: Off the charts

Local Edge Playlist: 11/28/10

"Sexy Weekend", Legsweeper
"Buyer's Remorse", Les Americains
"Virgin Eyes", Hoyotoho
"River song", Seryn
"Devil's Nest", Lalagray
"The Penitent", Whiskey Folk Ramblers
"Childhood (LehtMoJoe Remix)", GalleryCat vs. Mount Righteous
"Write for You", Goodwin
"Relying", Katie Carroll
"Allison", The Burning Hotels
"The Walls (What the Birds Know)", The Boom Boom Box
"Virtue and Vice", The Virgin Wolves
"Good Night's Rest", Tweed EQ
"Knife Fight", Calhoun
"Child and Cobra", Epic Ruins

(Just my opinion here, but the Hoyotoho song is totally sick... in a good way)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Weekend Plans: Black Friday Edition

Undoubtedly, a number of you woke up early and battled it out with other shoppers at your favorite retail store. Sounds like fun, huh? I didn't think so either. Now that the beginning of the holiday season shopping frenzy has gotten to you, I recommend unwinding at a show this weekend. Here are some of your finer options.

Emmeline/Steve Jackson/Josh Cooley (Ten Times Cellar)
You do not understand how excited I am that Emmeline's Early Morning Hours is finally getting a proper CD release. Her slightly jazzy, highly melancholy tunes of pain and heartbreak are simply first-rate. Whether it be the tales of mourning in "The Story" or dealing with a friend's addiction in "Where the Light Is", Emmeline weaves well crafted musical stories set to a gorgeous melodic background. You can get your own copy of the CD tonight with the cost of admission. Don't know where Ten Times Cellar is? That's why I included a link. Speaking of links, here's a link to my interview with Emmeline, in case you haven't read it yet.
Spindrift/Fate Lions/The Cush (Kessler Theater)
Headlining band Spindrift is the only non-local band on the lineup. Fate Lions is unarguably Funkytown's finest power pop act, and The Cush has packed up their shoegaze sound and relocated it back to the metroplex. I'm hoping that means we'll see more of the band in the months to come.
Eleven Hundred Springs (Dan’s Silverleaf)
Country, like most music genres as of late, seems to be divided into a myriad of categories. There's alt-country, renegade country, Americana, Nashvegas, and so on. Eleven Hundred Springs, on the other hand, is country. The band needs no further classification. Country purists, this show's for you.
Dave Little/Chad Stockslagger/Laura Harrell (Allgood Cafe)
Are you still stuffed from Thanksgiving dinner? Even if so, you'll want to make room for one of Allgood's most tasty entrees. Throw in some Dave Little comedy, the keyboard stylings of Mr. Stockslagger (arguably the finest keyboard player in town), and Laura Harrell minus the other half of Romp Almighty, and you've got a delicious night of food and music.
The Roomsounds/Gypsy Bravado (LaGrange)
Looks like we'll have to wait until next year for the debut album of The Roomsounds. Based on what I've heard, I think we can expect a nice blend of pop hooks along with a certain alt-country sensibility. Can't wait.

The Rocket Summer/He Is We (The Prophet Bar)
All right, go ahead and laugh and make fun of this show, indie hipsters. Here's the dirty truth: Bryce Avery's first official album, Calendar Days, has more than a few tracks (notably "This Is Me" and "Mean Thoughts and Cheap Shots") that Ben Folds has to be kicking himself for not writing first. While overall I haven't dug Of Mice and Angels as much, "Walls" is still one of the most powerful tunes I've heard all year. It's a haunting beautiful tale of personal struggle that has remained in my ears (and in my heart) throughout the year. Go ahead, hipsters, and laugh. You know you're listening to this when no one's looking.
Emily Elbert/Damon C. Clark (Kessler Theater)
I've probably told this story on the blog before, so if you've heard it, have patience with me. I was chatting with someone at Opening Bell several years ago about Emily, and he said "She's pretty good for her age." I take strong exception with that statement. When Ms. Elbert truly cuts loose on the guitar, there are few people in the metroplex that can compete with her. It doesn't matter whether male or female, or whether the musician is 18 or 80 or somewhere in between. She deserves to be regarded at the same level as Chris Holt, Ryan Thomas Becker, and the area's other finest instrumentalists. I just hope that once Emily finishes college, she moves back to Dallas.
The JC Experience (LaGrange)
I still haven't seen the spectacle that is the JC Experience, but it seems to have become an institution at LaGrange. Mr. Pedigo and Mr. Stockslagger must be onto something.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Emmeline: The Interview

Last Tuesday, I met up with Emmeline at the Dunn Brothers Coffee in Addison to interview her. The only problem was that there was someone performing there, and that doesn’t work well for an interview. We then headed up to the Starbucks at Belt Line and the Dallas North Tollway, only to find out we chose the one Starbucks location that closes before eight. This was not exactly the best omen. We finally made our way to the Texadelphia restaurant in the same shopping area before beginning the interview. Here is just part of the interview, even featuring interruptions by the waitstaff. Bet the waitress wasn't counting on being part of the interview.

GOBL: Here’s something I’ve wondered: Most of your songs are about heartbreak, sadness, painful times, etc., and yet on a personal level, you are about the complete antithesis of that. You’re actually one of the happiest musicians I know. So, how do you explain that dichotomy?

Emmeline: Well, first of all, thanks for thinking I’m one of the happiest musicians you know. That’s a huge compliment. I think that actually it makes more sense for me to write sad songs and then be a happy person. The music becomes an outlet and a channel through which I can express all of the sadness. I think that the other beauty of music is that it allows you to give voice to things that people don’t usually talk about. When you get your heart broken, it’s not something that you want to go spill all over town; you don’t want to invite the criticism. You don’t want to deal with other people’s perceptions of whatever relationship you had, and this allows you to be completely and totally honest about what you’re feeling. The beauty of music is that you can be as vulnerable as you want to be, and at the end of the day you’ve exercised those feelings. You can be a happier person for it.

GOBL: Let me discuss one of those heartbreak songs. One of my favorites off the album, as you know, is “Where the Light Is.” How did that song come to be?

E: That’s actually an interesting question because for me, “Where the Light Is” isn’t necessarily about a romantic relationship. I was very close to someone who was struggling with addiction, and one of the hardest lessons to learn is that you can’t make anybody do anything that they don’t want to do. It was something my dad always told me when I was growing up, and I always thought he was a liar because I was like, “There has to be something harder than that.” But I think it’s true, especially when you see somebody suffering and you know that there’s a way they can fix it and you give them the answer over and over and over and over, but for whatever reason they won’t apply it. For me, that’s what that song is about, learning that you can only try so many times before you recognize the toll it’s taking in your life and then you have to walk away.

GOBL: There was a line in the song and I’m wondering if it was directly inspired by your father. It was…

Waitress: Are you ready?

E: I’d like to get the chicken tenders and could I get some applesauce to go with that?

Waitress: Sure

GOBL: Okay, now where was I…

E: (commenting on the sound playing in the background) I cover this song and change the words. Have you heard this song?

GOBL: Is this Taylor Swift?

E: I cover this song and change the words because this is the most ridiculous notion ever, that you’re only in a happy relationship if you own the other person and they own you. “You’re the best thing that’s ever been mine”. I mean, that sounds like the worst relationship ever. Also, the notion that any problems that you have can be solved by one memory of sitting by the water and being happy is… poppycock. It’s not true. Is the tape recorder still on?

GOBL: It is, and…

E: (trying to avoid a potential Emmeline/Taylor Swift war of words) I love Taylor Swift, I do. She has this song on the record called “Last Kiss” that is amazing! It’s such a beautifully morose picture of heartbreak. I love it.

GOBL: So you’ve talked about what a love song should NOT be. What are some love songs that you think are good songs?

E: I’m so glad you asked. Have you heard “The Reasons” by The Weakerthans? I love it. I really enjoy unconventional portrayals of love because I think that those are the most honest portrayals of it. I don’t think that there’s any relationship that’s flowers and rainbows and cotton candy all the time. I think you go through things that are difficult. There’s this song by The Afters called “Ocean Wide” that has a line that goes “When love is a raging sea, you can hold on to me, and we’re going to make it.” I think that that’s the way it works. There are great times and there are really hard times, but at the end of the day if you can hold on to each other and you can still want to be with the other person, that’s what love is. It’s not somewhere where everything goes perfectly.

GOBL: Let me ask you about another one of your songs. What is the story behind “The Story”?

E: This is so lame. Honestly, one of the things I struggled with when writing this record was how to hold on to the people you love, how tightly to hold them, how to guide them. That doesn’t necessarily just mean romantic relationships. There are friendships and familial relationships where the politics are difficult. You have to figure out a way to be the best and most honest person you can be while not stepping on their toes and letting them be who they’re going to be. It’s an odd dichotomy of acceptance and growth. I think that’s the idea that I was struggling with when I wrote this story. That and loss.

GOBL: (mishearing) Lost, as in the TV show?

E: No, loss, as in the idea of losing somebody (laughing). Yes, well I was thinking about this plane and how it landed on this island with all these crazy people and I wonder what would happen if one of them took a whole bunch of pills. That’s going into the interview, isn’t it?

GOBL: I’ll have to incorporate that. If I’m going to have Taylor Swift in the interview, I’ve got to include my issues with hearing.

E: I had this very cool seven chord progression that was very jazzy that I was working with. I was going to try to write a happy song and it just was not working for me. I took the dog for a walk and ended up by the lake and was staring at the water and the line “There’s a lady named Miranda on the sidewalk by the bay” popped into my head. It wrote itself…

Waitress: Here’s your food.

E: Thanks. Anyway, the song wrote itself essentially in twenty minutes as I was taking laps around the park. I had heard about pharm parties a few days before that, and I just kept thinking about what kind of situation has to come together for that to arise. All I could think of was these kids whose parents have a lot of money, but not a lot of time to pay attention. I think that’s when the saddest things happen. Ultimately, my goal in writing that was not to bum the whole world out, but to make people think about appreciating the people that are close to them and about paying attention really. The idea in my head behind Miranda and her husband in the song is that he went to war, he came back, he had PTSD, and it was something that ultimately drove him to self-destruction. Then you have kind of the same issue with Sebastian and his parents. They’re not around a whole lot. There’s a reason that I said “He pulls the pills out of the cabinet, hoping that they’ll reprimand,” because he’s looking for any shred of attention. I think there are so many instances in which people are crying out for help before something happens and if you can hear those cries for help if you can pay attention to that need then maybe there wouldn’t be as loss.

GOBL: I’ve heard that John Keener, from Lakewood Bar & Grill, had a part in helping you write that song. Did he have any part in helping you with the song?

E: Funny story. OK, John had teased me about writing a bunch of first person confessional songs and so I had been thinking a lot about writing a song in 3rd person and it’s not the only song I’ve ever written in 3rd person but yeah, that was definitely a big part of it. I had totally forgotten about that.

GOBL: I was curious; I think John takes a great amount of pride in having a part in helping you write the song. Speaking of “The Story”, you’ve created a, shall we say, interesting way of promoting this song (and others) through video. Where did you find these people for the video?

E: Well you know I’m kind of a kooky, happy, crazy personality. I was thinking about ways of promoting this record and I sat down with a good friend of mine, Mandy Caulkins, who helps me with a lot of the things I’ve been doing. She asked “What do you want people to get out of it?” What I want people to get out of it is that having a record is like a best friend, something you can go to and feel better, and it can give you advice. I went through a period in high school, and even now, where records can do things for you that people can’t necessarily. There’s something about the music that can get a message in that somebody might have been trying to give you for five or six years, but you hear it in a song and all of a sudden it’s like the cartoon light bulb goes off over your head. I took the serious notion of having a record that speaks to you and try to figure out what kind of people would be affected by these songs. I wanted it to be a little bit ridiculous. I am aware that a lot of my music is sad, but I do have a pretty strong, persistent sense of humor and so I wanted to bring light to some of these things. I think if you can laugh at it, it’s a lot less scary. It started as a joke the first time we both went to Cali to play, we were on the plane back and I suggested promoting each song with a character. Mandy asked how that was going to work. I said, “Well, what if there was this boy who went to a pharm party” She said, “That’s the most twisted thing I’ve heard in my life, and you’re going to try to make a joke out of this,” and I was like “Yeah, I think it’d be funny.” I mean, pharm parties themselves are not funny at all. It’s a horrible, horrible idea and a terrible situation that I wouldn’t want any child ever to get involved in. But having a funny character explain why it’s a bad idea is not necessarily the most awful thing ever. So Mandy was like, “You’re going to dress up like a guy?” “Uh-huh.” “And you’re going to talk like a guy.” “Uh-huh.” Mandy was like, “Okay…” So then I kept thinking and said, “Ooh… and there can be a 4 year old” and she was like “Really?” Just wait until you see the video for “Exit.”

GOBL: That was my next question. I was about to ask if there were any more characters…

E: Oh, there’s one for every song.

GOBL: Oh, really?

E: Yes.

GOBL: So you’re not going to let my readers in on the secret?

E: I will tell you that one involves a gorilla costume.

There were many more interesting moments that I couldn’t fit into the interview, including the time she played “Ice Ice Baby” in Katy, our mutual love for Daria, the merits of applesauce as a dipping sauce for chicken tenders, and her most awkward moment at a show of hers ever. If you want to discuss any of these random topics with her, I’d encourage you to go to her CD release show for Early Morning Hours. It takes place this Friday at Ten Times Cellar, with Steve Jackson and Josh Cooley opening.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Lucky Thirteen: 11/22/10

Sometimes I like to mix things up and do a playlist with some sort of theme. Last week, I chose the "theme" of an all-request playlist. I took back the reigns this week, and decided to do an all female singer-songwriter edition. I've always had a weakness for female songwriters. Blame it on listening to too much Indigo Girls and Sarah McLachlan in college. Here are thirteen of my favorites from these parts. Forgive me if there are fewer comments than usual, with some songs not featuring any comments. It's going to be a busy week for yours truly, and you should see some of the rewards for that later this week on the blog. For now, just enjoy the music.

Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at and I will gladly remove the track. And if you'd actually like to be on the playlist, you can use the same email address to email me your mp3's. If I like the song, then odds are it'll wind up on a playlist.

  1. "The Story", Emmeline
    Emmeline's CD release party for Early Morning Hours this Friday at Ten Times Cellar was what inspired me to do this playlist.

  2. "Save Your Breath", Camille Cortinas
    Camille says her next CD should be out early next year. Keep your fingers crossed that she's right.

  3. "Proof", Emily Elbert
    Coppell's finest will be playing the Kessler Theater this Saturday.

  4. "Vulnerable", Sarah Jaffe
    You know, I thought about leaving Sarah Jaffe off of this list, and just... whoa, buddy! Take a deep breath. I was only kidding. You can quit hyperventilating now.

  5. "For Ages", Sara Donaldson

  6. "Gold Rush", Kristy Kruger

  7. "Will Anybody Love Me", Lalagray

  8. "What We Have Become", Phoenix Hart
    Here's a coincidence: I emailed Ms. Hart to get a track to put on my playlist. Before she ever got her email, one of her publicists saw that I'd published her cover of "Hot 'N Cold" and emailed me the album. Pretty crazy, huh?

  9. "His Heart", Meredith Louise Miller
    Here's a 90's classic for you. Meredith, you need to come back to Dallas and play a show.

  10. "Capture", Summer Ames
    This is a great song with a great video that you should watch. Click here to watch.

  11. "For Keeps", Iris Leu

  12. "Paper Girl", Katie Carroll
    Just a reminder, I'm assembling my top 40 for 2010. This song is pretty much guaranteed a spot on there. Want to know what else will make the cut? Too bad. You've got to wait, just like everyone else.

  13. "The Cure", Anna Thomas
    Her EP, Break Apart, should be available on itunes by now, and it's worth getting. Also, I'm taking a moment to make a correction: she's 14, not 13. My bad.

Local Edge Playlist: 11/21/10

Mark shone the spotlight away from Big D and onto little d for this all Denton Edition of the Local Edge.

"Wishy Waltz", RTB2
"Book Burner", Roy Robertson
"Cut the Lights", Manned Missiles
IN STUDIO: DANNY RUSH (aka Daniel Folmer)
"District County Court"

"River Song", Seryn
"Birthmark (Chicago)", Jessie Frye
"Count Me Out", Grassfight
"This Floor", Young and Brave
"Walking in an Arc", Delmore Pilcrow
"Park Bench", Florene
"Mother Nature", Andrew Tinker