SHOW ME somethin’ good
We kicked off a whirlwind tour through the heartland with a stop at one of our favorite haunts – The Purple Fiddle in Thomas, WV. We joined the bill last minute, as we were looking for a route to make our way westward, and found ourselves passing through Appalachia when our fellow Brooklynites Yarn were playing this little mountain hideaway. We’ve long wanted to share a bill with them, and it did not disappoint. The fans came out of the woodworks and those guys put on a simply killer show and we had a great hang with them.
We then set up our Missouri residency as we hustled through to St. Louis for a show at Oak Tree Concerts, presented by some of our pals from the John Hartford Memorial Fest. This marked our first outdoor show of the year and man was it nice to feel the breeze and hear the birds while we laid it down for one of the finer audiences we’ve ever played for. They were real receptive to both the vibe and the message of our music. Not surprising, as we later found out that St. Louis hosts the biggest Mardi Gras celebration in the US outside of Nawlins. I think I know where we’re headed next February…
Next we headed to beautiful Lawrence, Kansas (home to Craig’s alma matter) for a very special in-studio appearance with a radio legend, Bob McWilliams. His show Trail Mix covers the gamut of Americana, Roots, and Folk, and he’s also got an encyclopedic knowledge of jazz and is a history buff. Our kind of dude. The whole staff at the station was world class, and it was a blast to play and chat with him about our new album. Look for that show to air in June.
Then on to the land of jazz and brisket (two of our faves) – Kansas City. We performed as part of the Middle of the Map Fest, which is an incredible event that takes place at venues all across the city and presents a vast array of local and national talent. We followed that up with a show at The Social Room, a very cool speakeasy located through a secret door in the back of a beauty salon. We shared those bills with 16 year old Julian Davis – a really phenomenal flatpicker who you’ll certainly be hearing about for years to come.
Unfortunately we turned our wagon back east a few days earlier than expected due to some issues with a promoter who we were supposed to be working with. Suffice it to say that haters gonna hate. A rotten experience like this only served to make us realize how fortunate we are to almost exclusively work with and play for great people. It’s essentially a blind leap of faith every time we hit the road, so we count our blessings for all the generous fans, honest promoters and bookers, and gracious bands who we’re fortunate to walk with on this path. As we say – “Love, Liberty, & The Pursuit of Boogie.” (hey, that’d look good on a T-shirt, huh?)
Tags: Americana, Americana Rhythm and Blues, banjo, Boogie Woogie, John Hartford Memorial Festival, Julian Davis, kansas, Kansas City, KS, Lawrence, Live Music, Middle of the Map, Missouri, Music, New Orleans, Roosevelt Dime, St. Louis, The Purple Fiddle, Yarn
Summer Bucket List
We’ve been lucky to be spending time in some cooler climes during these dog days of summer. A few days in the beauty of Vermont was just what the doctor ordered, and the Green Mountain State lived up to it’s hype as one of the best music scenes out there.
We returned to the legendary Nectar’s in Burlington for another Thursday night bacchanal, and then made our way to the ski mecca of Stowe to play the Rusty Nail. It’s a beautiful room with a killer sound system, but unfortunately we got the news when we walked in that the sound man was sick, and they couldn’t find a replacement! No worries, as our drummer/sound engineer extraordinaire Tony stepped up and navigated his way through a maze of cables and vague signal chains until they found someone to come in and run the board just before the downbeat. You never quite know what life on the road will throw at you, and we do our very best to hang in there and keep putting on the best damn show we can. With the brief downtime we had, we ran down the Vermont-summertime-bucket-list: lake swimming, back road driving, driveway b-ball, maple creemees, grilling, and tasty craft brews.
Next we took a roll through our old stomping grounds of Ohio with a show at the Music Box in Cleveland, not far from where Eben and Andrew first met at Oberlin College. It’s an awesome new venue right on the river, and we look forward to getting back there again before too long.
A roll towards Columbus brought us in-studio at the awesome independent radio station and NPR affiliate WCBE, in advance of our show at Natalie’s, which was a great room, great sound, great people, and GREAT pizza. This is coming from some jaded NY and New Haven residents who take their pies very seriously, but let me tell you, this place is the real deal and a wonderful supporter of the Americana music scene. Next up was the capital of the Keystone State and a stop at a fantastic new venue called the Harrisburg Midtown Arts Center. They’re working real hard to coalesce the arts scene there and are doing all sorts of very cool programming beyond just music (including a live Halloween production of Rocky Horror!) so be sure to check them out if you’re in the area. We also had a chance to drop in for a live TV appearance at the local ABC affiliate (check out the footage here) for a performance and the requisite clowning around on set.
Then was a homecoming in the Hudson Valley, as we played for the third straight year at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival. It was a magical few days with perfect weather and our main stage set was just a blast with the sun shining down on music lovers spread out all over the hill . And big thanks as always to our family at the Blue Camp (Davey, Josh, Mindy et al.) who are behind the scenes helping to run the show and always making sure that we’re well hydrated and properly relaxed.
Tags: ABC, ABC27, Americana, banjo, Blue Camp, Bluegrass Thursdays, Blues, Boogie Woogie, Burlington, Cleveland, Columbus, Craft Brews, Dance Party, Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, Festival, Folk, Good Day PA, Green Mountain State, Grilling, harrisburg mid-town arts center, Hudson Valley, Jubilation, Judy Collins, June Rich, Keystone State, Live Music, Maple Creemees, Music Box Supper Club, Natalie's Coal Fired Pizza and Live Music, Nectar's, NPR, Oberlin, Ohio, Pesky J Nixon, Pizza, r&b, Rhythm and Blues, Rusty Nail, Stowe, Summertime, Susan Werner, Togetherness, Upright Bass, Vermont, Vocals, WCBE
Neighbors Up North / Pride
You hear a lot about southern hospitality, but people aren’t talking enough about the good vibes coming from our neighbors up north. We just capped off our first tour to Buffalo and Ontario and good lord we could not have had a better time. We did a run of shows through Orillia, Toronto, and Peterborough, with the latter being the real highlight. So many thanks to Adam, Emily, Big Hank, and the Pine Box String Band for making a bunch of Yankees feel right at home. We received a bunch of comparisons to The Band, and considering it’s the hometown of Ronnie Hawkins, we’ll take that as a compliment of the highest order!
It was also a real case of kismet to be up in Toronto on their annual Pride Day shortly after the SCOTUS announced the ruling on same-sex marriage. There was a great energy in the air, and everyone was congratulating us on our country’s (long overdue) decision. It was a great time to be an American abroad and to feel pride in the progress of of our nation. #loveislove
There wasn’t much down time as we also squeezed in two video sessions with the Toronto Acoustic Sessions and the 1809 Sessions, so stay tuned in the next couple of weeks for some brand new moving pictures of the band. And you’re hearing it here first – we’re heading back to the studio this week! After reconfiguring the lineup and instrumentation one year ago, we’re feeling road ready and primed to bring you the best music to date. We can’t wait for you to hear what’s going down.
Fare thee well!
Tags: #loveislove, banjo, Blues, Buffalo, Canada, Jug Band, Live Music, Memphis Jug Band, Ontario, Orillia, Peterborough, Pine Box String Band, Pride, Roosevelt Dime, Toronto