Monthly Archives: April 2022

TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

We are the leaders of tomorrow. / We are the ones to have the fun. / We want control. We want the power. / Not gonna stop until it comes.

We are not Jesus Christ. / We are not fascist pigs. / We are not capitalist industrialists. / We are not communists. / We are the one.

The expression “too cool for school” is bang on for us Sidels. This week my former classmates are having a get together on the upper west side of NYC. Over the past few weeks a chat thread has emerged, 50+ classmates strong. It’s a cocktail hour for the class of 1980. It was great to see so many names; many of us have been in touch. Most are parents. I reached out to Tom Nagorski. We were co-captains of the basketball team and it was fun trading photos. Too my joy, big Tom still hoops it up.

With this “class reunion” mix I want to send my love and positive vibes to all my life long school day pals. All said, mine is “the class of 77.” It’s the year punk broke and changed my world. My reunion took place over the last few nights digging through my old 45 collection. Listening to punk records from the late ’70s makes me happy. So I’m just gonna listen over and over and remember so many “heroes!”

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TVD Live Shots:
Wilco at Auditorium Theatre, 4/24

It was 20 years ago to the month that Wilco released their seminal album, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. To commemorate the occasion, the band played the record in full for eight special shows: five in NYC and three in their hometown of Chicago. On the final night of the run at the Auditorium Theatre, Jeff Tweedy acknowledged that the experience was “emotional. It was weird.” And, I imagine, cathartic (and not just for the band).

The entire evening was thoughtfully curated and nuanced. Opening the show and setting the mood was tremendous local quartet, The Magnificent Strings. They played a series of songs and snippets from YHF before the curtain opened and Wilco—Jeff Tweedy; John Stirratt; Glenn Kotche; Nels Cline; Patrick Sansone; and Mikael Jorgensen—took the stage. And we were off: the album, as promised, from start to finish. As beautiful and crushing as ever, and lush with backing from The Magnificent Strings and a three-piece horn section. The musicians on the stage seemed to pour their hearts and souls into the performance—no detail too small. It was simply stunning.

The band returned to the stage to make a couple dedications in the form of B-sides from the YHF era and a few fan favorites from their earlier years (“Monday,” “Outtasite”). They first covered Bill Fay’s “Be Not So Fearful” for Jim O’Rourke because of “all the amazing work he did on the record.” The remaining songs were devoted to the memory of Jay Bennett, “for all his contributions to the band and particularly [YHF].” Bennett, who died in 2009, was a multi-instrumentalist with the band from 1994 to 2001.

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TVD Radar: The Beach Boys, Sounds Of Summer: The Very Best of The Beach Boys 2LP and 6LP in stores 6/17

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Upon signing to Capitol Records in 1962 and releasing their first album, Surfin’ Safari, that same year, the three young brothers, cousin, and friend from Hawthorne, Calif., known simply as The Beach Boys, soared to popularity with their ebullient sound that embodied the Southern California beach lifestyle with sunshiny vocal harmonies, twangy guitars, upbeat songs about surf culture, and their youthful exuberance.

Propelled by the hits “Surfin’” and “Surfin’ Safari,” the album, which uncommon for its day, featured mostly original songs, spent 37 weeks on the Billboard chart and set the course for one of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful bands of all time, who have gone on to sell more than 100 million records worldwide. With each album, The Beach Boys refined their songwriting and production skills, rapidly evolving from their early surf beginnings to create some of the most sonically exquisite and most important and beloved music ever made.

Sixty years after first transmitting their good vibrations around the globe, The Beach Boys, the first American pop band to reach the 60-year milestone, remain one of the most legendary and influential groups to date, with their timeless music reverberating through modern culture today as strong as ever. In celebration of their 60th anniversary, UMe, the global catalog company of UMG, is pleased to be a part of some of the initiatives planned to celebrate “America’s Band” throughout 2022-23.

The Beach Boys said: “It’s hard to believe it’s been 60 years since we signed to Capitol Records and released our first album, Surfin’ Safari. We were just kids in 1962 and could have never dreamed about where our music would take us, that it would have such a big impact on the world, still be loved, and continue to be discovered by generation after generation. This is a huge milestone that we’re all very honored to have achieved. And to our incredible fans, forever and new, we look forward to sharing even more throughout the year.”

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Graded on a Curve:
Rod McKuen,
Beatsville

Remembering Rod McKuen on the date of his birth.Ed.

When the ancient Greeks coined the word bathos, I’m pretty sure they had Rod McKuen in mind. America’s most popular–and worst–poet of the 1960s, McKuen produced books of poetry the way Virginia opossums make babies, each and every one of them catering to the tastes of a reading public deeply suspicious of the filthy beatnik likes of Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg.

But on 1959’s Beatsville Mckuen does a remarkable thing–he goes from schmaltz to shtick. While he serves up plenty of his trademark mawk along the way, McKuen–who’s obviously using Kerouac’s spontaneous bop prosody as a model-comes on like Maynard G. Krebs on a Benzedrine inhaler high, and I’ll be damned if his tongue-in-cheek observations on subterranean pads and co-existence bagel shops aren’t hilarious.

McKuen’s point varies–sometimes he’s your standard real gone Daddy-O who considers business suits and underarm deodorants a total drag; at others he’s the wistful black beret wannabe who moans, “I try to be a good beatnik but it’s hard/I don’t dig turtle neck sweaters/I can’t grow a beard/And I catch cold in sandals.”

Backed by some tastefully tasteless musical accompaniment–including a metronome and some really hep finger snaps–McKuen had me at “Every time I got torn up on sneaky Pete or high on Thunderbird wine/I wind up hitching rides to Sausalito.”

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TVD’s Jazz Fest Picks
for the First Weekend, 4/30–5/1

Saturdays have traditional been the most popular days at the Fairgrounds and feature the biggest names on the seven-day roster. This year of renewal is no exception with an encore performance from one of rock ‘n’ roll’s most enduring bands, The Who, along with roots rocker Jason Isbell, hip hop veteran Nelly, and Latin legend Jose Feliciano. But my picks as regular readers know are less well known but equally deserving of your attention.

Start your day with a jolt stronger than a double espresso, which you may need if you were out late last night, and go check out Johnny Sketch and the Dirty Notes. Another of New Orleans’ long lasting rock bands, this group of classically trained musicians has carved out a niche with hardcore fans and great songs fleshed out with killer arrangements. Take a special listen to the horn section.

Lakou Mizik of Haiti first burst on the scene in New Orleans at Jazz Fest several years back. Since then they have spent considerable time in the city and have recorded with some of the city’s finest including Preservation Hall musicians and local Haitian American Leyla McCalla. They have also featured members of indie rock band Arcade Fire on their sets. I expect Caribbean roots sounds with a healthy dose of New Orleans influence. Listen for their version of “Iko Iko” sung in Haitian creole.

Another one of my favorite bands that used to play only at the Jazz Fest is Trumpet Mafia. Led by trumpeter Ashlin Parker, the band has been a mainstay during the pandemic turning up on the balcony of the Jazz Museum and on a porch uptown among other places. Their Jazz Fest sets feature at least twenty trumpeters!

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Graded on a Curve:
Exene Cervenka,
The Excitement of
Maybe

It’s difficult to separate the punk goddess and long-time X vocalist Exene Cervenka from the Exene Cervenka turned QAnon fellow traveler whose abhorrent beliefs as regards to the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School (hoax) and the 2014 mass shooting in Isla Vista, California (engineered by the government to give it more control over us sheeple) have caused so much anguish to the families of their victims.

But that’s not the problem I have with 2011’s The Excitement of Maybe, which so far as I know was recorded well before Cervenka threw herself down the conspiratorial shithole to get high on the fecal stench of her ugly ilk. My problem is Exene sacrifices all of her gifts—her anger, her loveable caterwaul, and her scathing and rich in detail lyrics—in an effort to become a slightly above average female C&W and folk rock-singer-songwriter whose subject matter never strays from the cliched generalities of the broken hearts of popular song.

Which isn’t to say The Excitement of Maybe is a bad album. Far from it. The songs themselves are solid and Exene has a lovely—if hardly distinguishable from the countless other female folk rockers out there—voice. But the LP comes up fatally short in the fireworks department, and lacks the one thing its title promises—excitement. Her work with X shocked and crackled like a downed power line. On this solo album she doesn’t generate enough energy to power a toaster oven. The LP hits its target, I think, if her target was a traditional album of take-no-chances songs about love gone wrong. But she achieves at the expense of her unique poetic powers, and all of her legendary gumption.

The generic lyrics are the first thing that stand out—or rather make that don’t stand out. I’m assuming Cervenka was attempting to work a songwriting vein that stresses universal emotions expressed in a received shorthand understandable to your neighbor’s Bichon Frise. There’s nothing wrong with that. But the end product is a hodgepodge of commonplaces and clichés—I can count the number of inspired lyrics—or basic imagery for that matter—on one hand.

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In rotation: 4/29/22

London, UK | London’s Rat Records is closing down: The Camberwell shop will shut its doors in June. Second-hand treasure trove Rat Records is set to close this summer. Its current owners are looking for someone to keep the shop running. Opened by Tom Fisher in 1999, Rat Records focused on selling rare reggae, funk, soul, punk and more, entertaining a faithful crowd of regulars who would queue up to flick through the new stock added to the racks each Saturday morning. The shop will close in the third week of June, with the final day of trading planned for Saturday the 18th, after which the current lease expires. Fisher will continue to buy and sell records online, however he’s keen for the space to remain as a record store, and is urging anyone interested in purchasing the name and assets to contact him. Head to the Rat Records site for more info.

Queensland, AU | Iconic Bris Record Store Unleashes On Govt, Police After Closure Announcement: “You have to leave for your sanity and safety.” The team behind beloved Queensland record store Butter Beats has announced the closure of the Fortitude Valley location. A haven for collectable records, Butter Beats has been a mainstay of the Brisbane music scene since 1998, specialising in rare Australian releases. “After a crazy 23 years working in the Fortitude Valley, we are shutting the Valley Store,” reads a statement on Butter Beats’ Facebook, with owner Jason Woodward stating that “dealing with the problems of the Valley has been trying.” “All three forms of government, both parties, has tested my patience and financial stability/ ability especially over the last two years, and like all abusive relationship, you have to leave for your sanity and safety,” the post says. “Twenty three years of seeing millions wasted and all forms of government destroying the character of the Valley and small business in general. The refusual to help those folks that are on the streets, preferring to ignore the ‘too hard basket.’

Berkley, MI | Block party planned to welcome Flipside Records to Berkley: The Berkley Downtown Development Authority is planning a block party from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 1, to welcome Flipside Records to its new home in the city’s downtown. Formerly in Clawson, the independent record store is now located at 3099 Coolidge Hwy. The Fam Jam Block Party will take place in the store’s parking lot, and will feature live music, a variety of food trucks and family-friendly games, crafts and activities. There will also be a special performance by the Norup International school band, a family martial arts session presented by MKG Detroit and photo opportunities with a Stormtrooper.

Madison, WI | B-Side Records announces new location after facing permanent closure: The 39-year-old downtown record store will move less than a block down State Street in September. B-Side Records has announced plans to move down to the 500 block of State Street in September, as the shop’s original location faces demolition to make way for a five-story multi-use structure. One of downtown Madison’s only remaining record shops had faced permanent closure after nearly 40 years on the 400 block of State Street due to the JD McCormick development. “It’s heartwarming to know we have this much community goodwill after nearly 40 years,” B-Side Owner Steve Manley said in a Facebook post. “It all feels like a fairy tale, this turning of the tide, after dire times in the 2000s, before the vinyl resurgence rescued us from the brink.” The new space will be bigger than the original store, and will see B-Side move back next door to its old neighbor, Freedom Skate Shop, which reopened in a new spot at 512 State St. in March.

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Demand it on Vinyl: Sheryl Crow, Sheryl: Music From The Feature Documentary 2CD in stores 5/6

VIA PRESS RELEASE | On March 11, a full-length documentary film directed by Amy Scott, entitled Sheryl about the singer-songwriter’s life and career, premiered at SXSW, ahead of the May 6 premiere on Showtime. An intimate story of song and sacrifice, Sheryl navigates an iconic yet arduous musical career while the artist battles sexism, ageism, depression, cancer, and the price of fame, before harnessing the power of her gift.

In conjunction, UMe/Big Machine Records will release a new album called Sheryl: Music From The Feature Documentary digitally and on 2CD on May 6. The release features Sheryl Crow’s biggest hits, including “If It Makes You Happy,” “Soak Up The Sun, “All I Wanna Do, “My Favorite Mistake, “Redemption Day,” and many more, as well as deep tracks and three newly recorded songs. To preorder Sheryl: Music From The Feature Documentary, click here.

“I am excited for the premiere of my documentary,” said Crow. “I hope people will find strength and courage through my story. It was a journey through years and years of incredible memories, and I am proud of the beautiful documentary that Amy Scott made about my life.”

Sheryl Crow is a nine-time Grammy Award recipient and an American music icon. Her first nine studio albums have sold 35 million copies worldwide; seven charted in the Top 10, and five were certified for Multi-Platinum sales. Crow has been feted by a new generation of singer-songwriters who have covered her songs and talked about her influence, including Phoebe Bridgers, H.E.R, Haim, Maren Morris, Lorde, Sasami, Best Coast, and Brandi Carlile.

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Graded on a Curve: Jacques Dutronc, Jacques Dutronc

Celebrating Jacques Dutronc, born on this day in 1943.Ed.

Who says the French can’t rock? I do, mon ami, I do. They can write like mad motherfuckers, as anybody’s who’s ever read Arthur Rimbaud or Louis-Ferdinand Celine or Alfred Jarry knows, and I would never impugn their oral skills (“The French they are a funny race; they fight with their feet and fuck with their face”) but rock? As in roll? Don’t make me le har har har.

But if the French can’t rock per se—and I know there are exceptions such as Les Négresses Vertes, whom I saw once in Philly and got hit in the head with a filled water bottle—they can do something every bit as interesting, it’s just I don’t have a word for it. It’s what Serge Gainsbourg and Brigitte Bardot do on “Bonnie and Clyde” and Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin do on “Je T’Aime Moi Non Plus” and Francoise Hardy does on “Il Vaut Mieux Une Petite Maison Dans Les Nuages” (my rough translation: “I Live in a Small House with Ted Nugent”) and it’s cool as shit. Chanson modifié? Whatever you label it, it beats most rock by a hasty French retreat.

And thanks to my Dutch pal Martijn, I have a new name to add to my list of superchic French pop-toners. Martijn suggested I give the coolly named Jacques Dutronc a listen, so I did, and I’m sold like the Eiffel Tower for 10 Euros to a rube. Dutronc may look like Le Lurch de la France on the cover of his self-titled 1966 debut—either the most arrogant or least imaginative l’homme in the world, Dutronc’s following six LPs were self-titled as well—and he’s wearing a shirt so bright green I suspect it’s a product of photosynthesis, but the rad hair says it all. This man is all French, and he means business.

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TVD’s Jazz Fest Picks
for Day One, 4/29

It’s been three long years of stops and starts and teases as the fine folks at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival have tried to manage the pandemic. This includes two scheduled fall dates, meaning we have theoretically missed out on four chances to dance at the New Orleans Fairgrounds. I’m back at it for the next two weeks with picks and reviews.

One of the hallmarks of the Jazz Fest is conflict in each time slot over the course of the eight hours of music each day. Festers interested in the traditional sounds of New Orleans will have to make their first decision early. The Shake ‘Em Up Brass Band is lined up alongside the Semolian Warriors Black Indian tribe.

Shake ‘Em Up is an all-female brass band, the second in the city as far as I know, along with the venerable Pinettes Brass Band. The Semolian Warriors are a relatively new tribe led by Big Chief Yam. They are an uptown-based gang.

For even more traditional roots music, check out Michael Skinkus and Moyuba. This band takes its cues from the Yoruba culture of Africa as it was transferred via the Middle Passage to Cuba. Skinkus is one of the best percussionists to ever call the Crescent City home.

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Graded on a Curve:
John Fred and His Playboy Band,
Judy in Disguise with Glasses

John Fred and His Playboy Band are secure in pop history for one song, namely “Judy in Disguise (With Glasses),” which climbed all the way to #1 in 1968. Now, some deride the tune as a brazen rip-off of a certain Beatles ditty, while others persist in enjoying its upbeat and faux-psych bubblegum vibes. Those in the latter category who’d like to add that track (plus 11 more) to their shelf are in luck if they act fast, as Liberation Hall has reissued Fred and Co.’s 1968 LP Judy in Disguise With Glasses for Record Store Day 2022 on “psychedelic purple vinyl” in an edition of 1,000 copies.

Some call the Louisiana-based John Fred a one hit wonder, but that’s arguable. He did place two other songs on the Billboard chart, but neither broke into the Top 40; the first was “Shirley” way back in 1958 (issued by John Fred and the Playboys), released by the Montel label with help from the band of Fats Domino (this song, as covered by Shakin’ Stevens, became a #2 hit in the UK in 1982).

“Shirley” is an okay slice of horn-laden ’50s NOLA pop-R&B action landing in the tight crevice betwixt bathtub-era Bobby Darin and Frankie “Sea Cruise” Ford, but it’s not included on Liberation Hall’s reissue so we will devote no more space to it here. “Hey, Hey Bunny,” a rock & soul revue-styled number complete with horns and strings that stands as Fred and the Playboy Band’s second biggest hit (#54, 1967) is featured on the album; it brings to mind Mitch Ryder with a touch of Mark Lindsay and some Rascals-y organ, but it’s frankly not as cool as that description (might) insinuate.

Better is “Agnes English,” which dials up the similarities to Lindsay (without going overboard) alongside pop-psych elements (crashing echo at the start, fuzz guitar) that intersect with utterly mainstream strings and horns, plus some mildly oddball gal backing vocals. It’s a fun stew (shoulda charted higher than its reported #125), but I much prefer the straight soul-isms of “Out of Left Field” (with a bit of that strange backing singing retained), a song first recorded by Percy Sledge (and written by Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham).

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In rotation: 4/28/22

Houston, TX | Cactus Music, Houston’s oldest independent record store: Cactus Music Co-Owner, Quinn Bishop, discusses the history of Houston’s oldest independent record store and its special place in Houston’s music scene. Cactus Music is Houston’s oldest independent record store. Its origins trace back to Harold “Pappy” Daily’s outpost, Daily’s Record Ranch, which opened in 1946. His sons, Bud and Don Daily, opened Cactus Music and Record Ranch in 1975. Great Day Houston spoke with Co-Owner, Quinn Bishop, about the history of Cactus Music and its special place in Houston’s music scene. Known for its extensive collection of music, customers can purchase anything from vintage LPs to cassette tapes and CDs. The record store invites shoppers to explore as well, with music memorabilia, concert posters, and autographs covering the walls. Music fans can also enjoy special in-store events including album release parties, artist meet and greets, and live music performances.

Levittown, PA | After midnight, vinyl lovers crowd Levittown indie record store: As midnight approached, but before Jacky BamBam arrived to groove it up, a hundred people waited in the chill on the sidewalk outside Positively Records on Woerner Avenue in Levittown. It was Record Store Day, and to each person in line, vinyl records rule. “We’re here for Taylor Swift,” said Tina Cuddy, who had been outside the store since 9 a.m., with her daughter, Rachel, 18. Taylor Swift issued a special release of a clear vinyl 45 rpm disc of “The Lakes” (the B-side is another version of the same tune). Just 10,000 were pressed and only indie record joints like Positively Records received a copy or two. “Maybe they have two, maybe four, you can’t be sure except that it’s not very many,” Rachel said. To increase their chances of snagging the record, they waited 15-hours outside. “They’re just aren’t a lot of places like this, so when there’s a Taylor Swift release, you just expect a crazy line of fans…”

Milwaukee, WI | Punk Vinyl, Vintage Clothing and Hanging Out at Blast Radius: If it weren’t for the graffiti on the walls and the not-so-distant upbeat music growing ever louder as you ascend the stairs, you probably wouldn’t realize that you were about to step inside of a little slice of punk-rock heaven. Blast Radius is Milwaukee’s newest independent record shop, an unassuming DIY storefront run by three local musicians out of a studio space in Walker’s Point. Located at 536 W. National Ave., there are no signs out front indicating that you’ve come to the right place—a feeling reminiscent of DIY punk basement shows, where addresses are seldomly given out on show fliers. Instead, customers will check the shop’s Instagram page—@blastradiusmke‑for the store hours. A buzzer on the front door of the building will alert whoever happens to be working, and you’ll be let inside.

Erie, PA | Treasures of Erie: From antiques to vinyl records, see what people are collecting in the area: …Spinning records is not just a nostalgic way to listen to music. It hasn’t been for years. The popularity of vinyl records truly never went away for lovers of the analog music storage format. “It’s always felt more intimate. You couldn’t really take it on the go and you had to commit to it,” said Millcreek resident Larry Wheaton, a musician and longtime vinyl aficionado. “I always enjoy playing them and turning them over. For somebody who loves music, it’s a better way of doing it than making it just background noise.” Vinyl has been making noise now for more than a decade in Erie and throughout the world with a resurgence back into the mainstream. A once-dominant way of playing music, records saw fewer spins on turntables in the 1980s before the vinyl format dropped out of popularity in the ’90s. But it’s climbed back to relevance with collectors and casual fans.

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TVD Radar: Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr. theatrical screening, 5/31

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Utopia has announced that tickets are on sale for the May 31st one-night-only special theatrical event release of Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr., the feature documentary that charts the legacy of Dinosaur Jr. Theater locations and tickets can be found at freakscenemovie.com.

Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr. celebrates one of the most influential acts in alternative rock, from their formation in the mid-1980s to their reunion concert celebrating their 30th anniversary, and introduces viewers to the introverted power trio behind Dinosaur Jr.—Lou Barlow, J Mascis, and Murph—who quietly opened the door for the likes of The Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana, The Cure, and Soundgarden.

Ahead of the May 31st theatrical release, Utopia will host a special New York Premiere in partnership with Murmrr at The Opera House in Brooklyn, New York on May 28th, followed by a special Q&A and solo performance from J Mascis. Tickets are available now. The film will be available on digital platforms on June 3rd.

Directed by Philipp Reichenheim, German filmmaker and J Mascis’ brother-in-law, the documentary features exclusive interviews with the trio and some of their musical contemporaries, including members of Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine, and The Pixies, painting a portrait of a groundbreaking period in American music as well as a poignant rumination on friendship and personal growth.

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Graded on a Curve: Curtis Harding,
If Words Were Flowers

One thing the recently delayed and altered Grammy Awards made clear is that rock music is no longer on the radar of today’s pop music tastemakers and many music fans. Other than a few token nods to the genre, the awards show and today’s music charts reveal an almost total absence of what was once the ruling musical sound in popular music.

Thankfully, another genre that also was in its heyday during the ‘60s and ‘70s does seem to be going through a revival. That genre is R&B and its cousin soul music. Silk Sonic and H.E.R., while also mixing other styles with R&B and soul, were prominent at the Grammys. Groups like The Black Keys and The Roots have been exploring related retro genres with much success, and Alabama Shakes and Brittany Howard have also been scoring with their roots stew. Gary Clark Jr. has also brought a guitar blues approach to the party.

These groups and artists are just some of the more popular and well-known, and all mix different styles to create their own contemporary sound. The Black Pumas have quickly joined the elite of this revival, and Michael Kiwanuka has slowly achieved a key place in this scene. Others that have been making soul waves include Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats, St. Paul and the Broken Bones, Leon Bridges, and Yola. One more name to add to this welcome revival is Curtis Harding.

Harding released his third album and second for Anti late last year and could easily eclipse everyone mentioned here. Like Leon Bridges, he prefers a more chill vibe, and like Michael Kiwanuka, he puts out recordings that are immaculately and imaginatively produced. Unlike most mentioned here, he draws from many other strands of music, including both cool and more experimental jazz. On this latest release, there are times he seems to be tapping into What’s Going On-era Marvin Gaye and the experimental, but groove-conscious side of ‘50s and ‘60s Ornette Coleman.

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TVD Radar: Musicasión
4 ½,
50th anniversary remastered reissue in stores 6/3

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Originally released in 1971, during the dark days of the military dictatorship in Uruguay, Musicasión made a strong and lasting impression on Juana Molina when she was a child. The forthcoming new 50th anniversary reissue, out June 3 on Sonamos (Juana’s recently-formed label), is a patient labor of love conducted by Juana and her associate producer Mario Agustin Gonzalez. This beautifully-crafted reissue of a lost masterpiece is available on limited-edition 2LP and CD. The release includes 16 unreleased tracks plus an informative album booklet.

Musicasión was a series of collective shows by a group of artists, mixing theatrical elements, poetry, improvised stage effects and music with a very special blend of rock (then called Cbeat, in a dual reference to British pop bands of the sixties and to Beat Generation poetry), candombe (the percussion-driven style created in Uruguay among the descendants of liberated African slaves) tango, jazz, and bossa nova. A combination which bears more than a passing resemblance with Brazilian Tropicália, which originated around the same time.

The masterminds behind the concept was the great singer, songwriter and composer Eduardo Mateo and his friend Horacio Buscaglia, a poet, actor and theatre director. Four different Musicasión productions were staged in 1969 (for a total of 14 performances), featuring musicians from Mateo’s band El Kinto and a host of other artists. The original album was put together in 1971, using recordings made before and during these performances.

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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