Honored to be part of NPR's Tiny Desk Contest 2017. "Pardon My Love" is a brand new song about domestic violence. It features fellow GIANTfingers bandmates Matt Goeke on cello and Jonathan K. Bendis on 12-string guitar. Please watch, like and share it today.
And check out my most recent single -- "FLY" -- on Bandcamp featuring vocalist Queen Esther.
It's the perfect stocking stuffer for your digital player.
Sometimes you gotta wait for it. Sometimes it's not all that immediate. And sometimes you just luck into it and your pretty darn happy you did. So it was with the new album Magnificent Ram A (Velvet Elk/One Little Indian Records) by singer-songwriter Don DiLego. Now I've come to find out that he's right here in my own backyard in NYC and I'm not sure why this is the first time I'm hearing about him, but I'm mightly glad I finally did. There's an urban angst in the Americana fabric of these tunes and certainly the simple lyrics and stripped down accompanyment means nothing, if you don't have the chops to fill those spaces with the right colors and textures. Mr. D has a real knack for it, too. Waiting on the vinyl for my full review, but in the interim please purchase said song here: http://tinyurl.com/hat8trr
Those who know me well, know that I was the publisher/editor of Prince's short-lived magazine NPG (New Power Generation) back in the mid '90s. (Culture Catch's managing editor Steve Holtje was our managing editor, too.) I had just finished my stint as editor-in-chief at Creem magazine where I was the only journalist to interview him in 1992. I had to agree to his seemingly restrictive demands that I not record our interview on a cassette recorder or use pen/pencil and paper and that he'd have final approval on the article, something we'd never done with any artist ever. I agreed since I was meeting him in person on his home turf. I did interview everyone in his inner circle and then finally met him in his private room where he played me his new record The Love Symbol Album in its entirety and we chatted about all kinds of things. Then known as the "Symbol/Glyph," "The Artist Formerly Known As..." or "The Boss" as he was known in and around his creative compound Paisley Park, I was told he really liked my creative cover story (Feb, 1993) that was as much an homage to Alice in Wonderland meets the Wizard of Oz as a visit to the astral/mystical world of Paisley Park. Read more »
With our electoral system in turmoil and already full of clowns, I nominate Puddles!
Puddles Pity Party is the new indie party for the people!
Need I say more?
I was gutted by the news shared by playwright/producer Jeff Cohen as he and I walked our dogs in Riverside Park early this morning. The Thin White Duke was no more. I struggled to understand the implications of losing a music hero. Rushing home, resigned to reality, I watched his two new videos, the one above and the album's title track which I featured on this website last week, both from his 28th studio album, ★(Blackstar), released this past week on January 8th, 2016, the date of Bowie's 69th birthday. As I watched "Lazarus" again, it all made sense.
"Lazarus" is clearly Bowie's epitaph, his final prophetic performance on this mortal coil... Read more »
Hope that 2016 is filled with bliss and inspiration. Blessings to you all!
Hey, music fans and friends, it's time once again to share my favorite music from 2015.
The songs on my year-end list are not what I consider true "singles" but rather my favorite 25 songs from 2015. I've not heard all the amazing music released this past year, but I do consume a healthy dose of tunes every single day. Below are 13 of those songs with Youtube links if you can't access my Spotify list. Let's proceed, shall we? Read more »
From all of us to all of you, HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
For those of you who may not know Ron English and his wonderful world of Popaganda, here's an amazing activation I co-produced with the fine folks at FuelFX. Besides a crazy scavenger hunt, Ron handpainted the world's largert AR (augmented reality) target/marker at Spider House during SXSW in Austin. That target as well as his handpainted Smiley Skull marker are still on display. If you download the "Ron English PopApp" for your iOS or Android device and point it at the Smiley Skull, it will come alive and talk to you! Check it out today. You can also download the app and point it at the image below and have some fun. Trust me, it's cooler than a jar full of Sea Monkeys! Read more »
So over on our Facebook Culture Catch page I asked our fans to list their five favorite living guitarists. For me, they still must be recording and touring and challenging themselves on the fretboard today, not yesterday. Our managing editor crushed me for not including Jimmy Page, who I hail as an unparelled innovator once upon a time. Hey, Steve, they have to be active and playing out right now. When was the last time Jimmy dropped a cool riff or run of memorable notes in a new song for anyone? He's certainly still capable. Here are my five favorite string benders in no particular ranking:
So for those of you who didn't make it to Chicago this weekend to witness the final chapter -- Fare Thee Well -- in The Grateful Dead's storied career, here's a 4th of July (Buffalo 7-4-89) show that will certainly make you smile. Check out Jerry shredding -- no kidding -- on "All Along The Watchtower". And it's not too late to buy their two final two pay-per-view gigs.
What a wonderfully long, strange trip it has all been!
Given the state of guns and violence in America, and how the unspeakable insanity of a few can ruin lives of many, I present the healing calm of "MMLJ" by the L.A.-based The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers. Heavenly Fire, their debut album, will be released on August 4th. Recorded with Matt Wignall (Cold War Kids, J. Roddy Walston and the Business) and led by the remarkable vocalist Kim Garcia, it won't be long before The Eagle Rock Gospel Singers become household names. You can catch them at upcoming festivals including Austin City Limits, the High Sierra Music Festival, and Pygmalion Music Festival.
Free jazz pioneer Ornette Coleman has passed on. He was a giant. Not always an easy listen for those unaccustomed to his style or this genre of jazz, but this album -- Dancing In Your Head -- remains one of my favorites from him. Here it is, top to bottom.