Category Local Flavor: Home Brewed and Baked Goods

SECRET WINDFALLS & DIAMONDS DOWN THE DRAIN: The Vinyl Skyway’s Long Cool Journey

Time always seemed to stop whenever one of The Vinyl Skyway’s songs would crackle to life on the radio inside my parents’ car on a cold-as-chrome winter’s afternoon. I remember being 14 and hunched toward the gleaming dashboard dial as if receiving a secret transmission. There was always something inviting, if somehow slightly baleful, that […]

A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Rock & Roll: Whiskeytown, Uncle Tupelo, and the Torched Twang of Americana

Despite its recent arrival as a charted radio format, Americana is nothing new. In fact, its very existence is predicated on the past. Rock & roll has always been an untidy bastard — rooted as much in outlaw country as it is in backporch blues or jukejoint R&B. Just listen to early Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Eddie Cochran, or Chuck Berry.

Rocking The 617 24-7: Inside the Vortex of a Spectacularly Noisy Universe

It speaks volumes — maybe decibels is a better word — about the consistent musical vitality of this city that I simply could not keep up with all of the adventurous, surprising, inspiring, and thrilling music that reached my ears over the years. But man, I tried.

BROKEN BISCUITS & A STROKE OF LUCK: How Corin Ashley Picked Up The Pieces To Assemble The Most Challenging Music Of His Life, and Made Himself Whole Again

“Then, on January 6, 2016, an awful thing most 40-somethings like Ashley don’t ever think about happening – because it would be too awful to ponder – happened. Corin suffered a stroke that paralyzed the playing fingers of his left hand and all but wiped out his vocal cords in one felling swoop. Suddenly, just like that, from a hospital bed far away from the stages he had stood on since he was a teenager in cover bands, Ashley didn’t know if he’d ever speak again, much less sing or play. “

Absolutely Pre-Fabulous! The Messiahs Trip Back To The Future in Bobb’s Psychedelic Car

Check out the brand spankin’ NEW Pre-Fab Messiahs video here (a fittingly surreal cartoon for these cartoonishly surreal times): https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DzAnUJ7MjnZ4&h=ATOPhol0JrD6O-uJnI9KreX528r34HTCMovCwE_-GcVYAUFPBRn7xXgvaKerRizt-v0mdtO9IpcmrpBMcoBDK6YhunvmPxF9lwpMcZwlRLIK8RxY17aevvExkg49PSzn3lW37R5oMoGulrB_G5sYB1w https://theprefabmessiahs.bandcamp.com/   Source: Absolutely Pre-Fabulous! The Messiahs Trip Back To The Future in Bobb’s Psychedelic Car

REGARDING THE END: Life, Death, and The Wondrous World of Robert Fisher’s Willard Grant Conspiracy

Robert Fisher’s Willard Grant Conspiracy conjure a mostly deserted world of long, lingering shadows where guys like Nick Cave and Mark Eitzel brood in a half-light that’s either salvation or damnation — a distinction that depends on whether you think being alone is solitude or isolation. A world where the songs thread through a musty room and gather there like settling smoke. Eventually, if you’re lucky, a cracked window swings open from the wind, bringing a new beam of sound and a fresh light with it to remind you that you’re alive.

CRACKED CHANDLER’S CRAZY CARNIVAL: From Incredible Casuals to Casually Incredible (Try Saying That Three Times Fast!)

“I gave up the idea of thinking I would make any big time dough in the music business a long time ago, and started just loving the fact that I have an obsession,” says Chandler Travis. “I worry about people in life who don’t. I don’t know how you’d get through.”

THERE IS A LIGHT THAT NEVER GOES OUT: Rick Berlin, Old Stag In Badville

“In Western culture, if you’re not making money for somebody else, you’re a flop. And I’ve never succeeded, I’ve never made any money doing this, ever. And yet, I’m so compelled to do it. I’m not at the level of Van Gogh, but I think about him.” — Rick Berlin

LOVE, LIFE, & LIT: Ted Drozdowski’s Scissormen Cut Deep To The Blues And Beyond

If it’s a bit hard to believe that my friend and colleague Ted Drozdowski is “only” celebrating the tenth anniversary of his lava-hot, molten blues trio, it may be because the veteran bandleader and award-winning music journalist has spent close to a lifetime listening to, and writing about, the very music he’s always treasured and revered. Playing it […]

Absolutely Pre-Fabulous! The Messiahs Trip Back To The Future in Bobb’s Psychedelic Car

Back in 1981, when a phone call brought four kids at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts together to form a peculiar psych-pop outfit called The Prefab Messiahs, Ronald Reagan was in the White House, Rick Springfield’s “Jessie’s Girl” was topping the charts, and REO Speedwagon’s “Hi Infidelity” was one of the biggest albums of the year. Closer to home, Ed King […]

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