“…cups of who cares…”

My kids are at wonderful ages (10, 8, 7, 5). They are out of the baby phase, but not yet to that scarey teenager territory. They also GET things. You know….the older two boys are into sports and were totally into the NCAA Basketball Championship this year (woohoo…shout out to our favorite DI team, the Louisville Cards!!). My daughter also was excited to follow the sucess of the Lady Cards. And my youngest little man is still my music lover and he is forever asking if a show is ‘for grown ups only’.

One of the joys of parenting is watching your child’s face light up when they meet someone they admire. And what is even better is when those idols are friendly and approachable. I am forever grateful to all of the current and former Bellarmine basketball players and coaches (especially those connected to the 2011 National Championship team) who have made my oldest two feel like a million bucks when they invite them into the locker room before a game or make a point to call them by name and say hello to them. I like to think of these people as accessible idols.

My youngest has had a major thing for Josh Ritter ever since we saw him play an in-store at ear-X-tacy. He was only 2 and in a sling but kept yelling ‘lalas’ during Josh’s performance because that was one of the few ‘words’ he said at the time. We were able to meet Josh afterwards and he was amazing with the kids. They all got high fives and guitar pics from Josh! And it made a lasting impression on my budding musician.

My little man has a room full of music posters…including one of Josh’s. He is learning to play guitar and has even composed his own song. When asked who his favorite musician is, he always says “Josh Ritter”. Not that I don’t love Josh, but it always comes as a surprise because he has met and hung out with other talented musicians, like Ben Sollee, The Head And The Heart and Patrick Hallahan (drummer of My Morning Jacket). It isn’t like Josh is the only musician he has met….but Josh clearly stand out in his mind.

We surprised our newly turned 5 year old with tickets to Josh’s April 19th show in Louisville for his birthday. He turn five at the beginning of April and (not knowing we already had tickets), he asked us if he could change his birthday to April 19 so that he could see Josh for his birthday gift. So sweet. We will be sitting in the 2nd row and I will probably spend more time watching my little man’s face instead of enjoying Josh’s usual smile, but I am pretty sure they will both be sporting big smiles!

 I hope to have a fabulous post-show update where I can gush about those smiles meeting and talking again, but you will just have to stay tuned. If you haven’t already listened to Josh, you should do so now. He has a great voice and I am really digging his new album, The Beast In Its Tracks. This new song, Joy To You Baby, is one of my all time favorites of his. (You will also “get’ the title to this entry…yes, it is a song lyric. 😉 )

If you can’t make the show or just want some good lunch time music on Friday, you can also tune into 91.9 WFPK, where Josh will be playing on Live Lunch at noon (you can stream it live from their site or app, in case you aren’t in Louisville!).

Brick and Mortar and Love Premier

There are days that I drive by the empty ear X-tacy store on Bardstown Road and the sadness just overwhelms me. I know I am not alone…I heard from many of you when I first posted about the closing of the legendary record store (It’s really gone). It is with excitement and sadness that I approach the world premier of Brick and Mortar and Love. It is tomorrow night at the Louisville Science Center (Saturday April 7, 2012 at 7pm).

This documentary by Scott Shuffitt and this is the description according to the website:

Brick and Mortar and Love follows the story of ear X-tacy Records, the legendary record store in Louisville, Kentucky, as it struggles to survive in the changing music retail industry. In-depth interviews include owner John Timmons, staff at ear X-tacy, leaders in the record store industry and scores of independent record store owners from all over the US. These interviews look into the state of the independent record store, what services they provide and what is at stake if they disappear.

The tragic part is that ear X-tacy closed before people could see this film and be inspired to do more to ensure the future of the store. I am hoping that seeing some of those friendly ear X-tacy employee faces will lessen the hole that the closing of ear X-tacy left.

 

what’s up with local music?

Louisville has always had a strong local music scene.  We are (generally) supportive of musicians and have some great music events (like Forecastle – “where the world gathers to experience the best in Music, Art, and Activism” and Abbey Road on the River-“biggest Beatles Music Fest in the world!)  And we can’t ignore the HUGE influence of 91.91 WFPK, most listened to AAA station in the country that hosts of so many fabulous shows (Live Lunch, Waterfront Wednesdays, etc) and home of the top Music Director in the country, Kyle Meredith (who also produces/hosts The Weekly Feed, an hour long syndicate in 16 markets). So, we have it good. And local musicians benefit from the strong radio presence….they get airtime!!

But, we all know there is now a large hole in the local music community since the closing of ear X-tacy.  ear X-tacy was a place were local musicans could sell their cds on consignment. It was a place they could have their cd release and in-store performance. It was a place where they could have their cd featured on a listening station for all to sample. I have had numerous people ask me where to buy local music now. I don’t even know what to tell them. I know there are other music stores, but I just called a couple to see if they had Inclusions by Ben Sollee (I’ve gotten a lot of inquiries from friends on where to buy his stuff) and no one did. They were all nice and said they could order it, but it isn’t the same.

I feel the loss and I am only a listener. I am curious to hear what local musicians think and what they think the future looks like for music in Louisville. And apparently, I am not the only one! The Louisville Free Public Library has put together an interesting event, “Local Music: An Insider’s Story”.  It is the first in a series called THINK LOCALLY. Local musicians, Joan Shelley and Joe Manning, of King’s Daughters & Sons,  will give their perspectives and insights on the past and future of music in Louisville.  Join me on Wednesday night at 7pm at the LFPL Highlands Branch.

new music overload, but in such a good way!

We all know how this time of the year brings in the insanity like no other time. We all acknowledge it and whether or not we accept is irrelevant. It’s going to happen we just try to brace ourselves for the crazy ride. But, thank goodness, music has stepped in and saved me.(fear not…I will have more on the holidays coming soon with a nice little playlist for you!)

As you may (or probably not!) have noticed, I haven’t had an update in a while. It took me some time  to process the closing of ear X-tacy and I couldn’t write anything. Then we got into full on holiday mode and I found myself in bed at night with fun topics swirling around in my head, yet they kept getting interrupted by boring thoughts like, ‘where am I going to find a Jesus costume’, ‘how can I make up the missed speech therapy due to the holidays?’, ‘wonder where my car scraper is?’

I have barely had time to look for music much less write about it. And that is when the universe steps in and takes over! Yay, universe! WFPK has been playing this new musician, Matt The Electrician. Well, come to find out he isn’t so new.  He has released a lot of stuff, but not sure many had heard of him.  Well, get on it! His latest release, The Accidental Thief, is the real deal. WFPK plays a couple of the songs, which are amazing, but I wanted more. I searched spotify (a great tool for checking out  artists), but couldn’t find his new stuff there. I had put off buying the CD because I didn’t know where to get it…I felt like a musical orphan (I soooo miss ear X-tacy already). So, I did something I haven’t done in years…I bought it off Amazon. Don’t worry-it isn’t something I plan on continuing to do, just in the meantime while I figure out the best independent record store to frequent.

Matt The Electrician equals awesomeness. I want to post all of the songs from Accidental Thief…everytime I think I have it narrowed down to 2, I change my mind. Ah, the pressures. But, how can you go wrong with lyrics like “i will do the breathing until  you are able to come up for air”? This is a very powerful, moving song.

And Accidental Thief is one of my absolute favorites!

And because this video is from a house show and Matt tells a great story…I couldn’t leave it out (I’m such a sucker for house shows!)

But I’m not done yet!! I had the absolute pleasure of being unexpectedly charmed by the Kopecky Family Band when I saw them open for my favorites, Walk The Moon (who exceeded my expectations, but I’ve already raved about them!!).  Wow.Wow.Wow. I know WFPK has played them and they were in town recently, but I am going with I was too swamped with the foursome and my head was stuck in the sand or more likely laundry! I couldn’t stop smiling! Any group that pulls out horns, cellos and accordions to go along with ‘regular’ instruments wins points in my book!! But I am certain that without any instruments they would have still impressed me. Their voices are unique, strong…perfect!

This is from a recent WFPK Live Lunch (that I so regretting missing!!).  Howling At The Moon:

Angry Eyes was one of my favorites from seeing them at Headliners (it starts slow and builds, so watch the whole thing!!). It was awesome when they threw the instruments into the crowd!

Another bonus video, because it takes place on my favorite corner in Louisville! Holy hell…wish I could have stumbled upon that!!!

Clear the Calendar!!!

It’s always like a kick in the pants when you discover this great new group, only to find out that they were just in your city playing live. And you missed it.  Arg! It’s time to dig into these groups, get your sitters and get ready to enjoy a little adult time out of the house!! All of these shows are at Headliners. And if you plan on going, let me know.  There is nothing better than sharing good music with great friends!!!

  • Sept. 22 – Ten out of Tenn:  This is a group of 10 musicians from Tennessee (go figure!), including Katie Herzig and Gabe Dixon.  According to their website, there are a collective of incredibly talented friends who, as individual artists, have released over thirty albums, had song placements in countless television programs & films and shared the stage with musicians such as REM, Sarah McLachlan and John Mayer. It was also just announced that they will be doing an in-store at ear X-tacy at 5:30pm the same night. 
  • Sept 30 – Pokey Lafarge with Maiden Raido and Whiskey Bent Valley Boys: This isn’t Pokey’s first time in Louisville this year and I know people are glad to have him back! I missed him last time, but hope to make up for it this time around.  Watching and listening to him is like stepping back in time.  He just has this classic bluesy-western feeling with killer harmonica! And he dresses the part!! Plus, opening for him that night is none other than the local girls of Maiden Radio.  Julia Purcell, Cheyenne Marie Mize and Joan Shelley make up the trio who has a new release called Lullabies with songs originally recorded for Julia’s daughter.  It is produced by Daniel Martin Moore on Ol Kentuck Records.
  • Oct. 6 – G. Love & Special Sauce with The Apache Relay: I am very excited to see both of these groups!! G.Love’s newest solo release, Fixin’ to Die, came out in February 2011 and was produced and backed by The Avett Brothers. Their sound is unique…a mix of hip-hop, blues and their own sound! See for yourself:      I think this will be a high energy show, since I’ve heard that The Apache Relay goes all out in their shows! I love the lyrics on this is song… “home is not places, it is love”. 

That’s all for now, but you will also want to get sitters for Oct.14 (Ben Sollee), Oct. 16 (Trombone Shorty), Oct. 20 (Dawes), Oct.27 (road trip to Lexington for The Avett Brothers). Don’t worry, I will be previewing all of those shows, too.  Just didn’t want to overwhelm you (okay, okay…it was me getting overwhelmed and consumed with finding the perfect videos to post 😉 ).