Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sunday Singles

Pete Best Band – Grey River

Arthur Joseph & the Lonely Astronauts - Good Friend

The Maybes – I Want You Around

Attic Lights - God

Sway - Taxi

Robin Thicke - Shadow of Doubt

Mary Mary - Sound

Lil Chris - Great British Summer

Cat Power – Fortunate Sun

Bands Under The Radar

Cool podcast. She does what we used to do, but has deeper pockets. The license fees for this type of work are horrendous, and Kami is doing a great job at sharing new bands. Add it to your sites to visit often. A permanent front page link has been added to "More Music" below.

The particular podcast I listened to introduced me to The Heroines by Tony Joe White. I missed it when it was released, but I'm making up for lost time. Played it three times so far today, well worth a few bucks.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Vetiver - Hey Doll Baby

Rockabilly Everly style in the Vetiverse of love. “You walk around here looking so fine, just about makes me lose my mind!” Just like the early 60’s we are not looking for deep poetry, just pure old fashioned lust in this cover tune. Well, there’s one line here that may be poetic, “I’m going to roll back the rug and nail up the door.” If you know what that means, let me know. Rollicking fun, fully captures the Everly spirit for a new generation. Shoutout for Just To Have You. Vetiver

Joey + Rory – Cheater, Cheater

“Did she smile your way, twirl her hair and say how cute your dimples are?” Yep, I know. Cheating’s not as popular as it used to be, at least in your neck of the woods. That doesn’t make this 3 minute song about Ernie’s Bar any less funny. “Loser, loser, hope you love her,’cause you’re stuck with her now. Take your sorry butt and all your stuff and get the hell out of my house!” LOL! Good old fashioned twirl your partner acoustic country shuffle. Sing along with some hot fiddle, “I wish her well as she rots in hell, and you can tell her I said so.” Shoutout for an unexpectedly cool acoustic version of Freebird. Joey + Rory

A Cuckoo - Adore

“You came over and you talked to me, I brought us both a drink.” Saturday bar music dance music for lovers of pop. Goes great sprinkled over pumpkin pie smothered with whipped cream. "I woke up with you laying next to me in some foreign bed." The story masterfully covers a year in the life of the narrator in 4 minutes. And wait till you hear the guitar break. Yum. A Cuckoo

The Sacred Sailors - Run With Me

Unleash the party with a wall of guitar sound. “You better watch yourself.” The excitement is infectious. The narrator is calling us to run with him through “all this mystery” or “all this misery.” No matter, it’s fun either way. Has a sixties spice because even the drummer gets a solo part in this 3 minute escapade. 2008 flavors for all other reasons – excellent soundscape production. Let’s pogo! Shoutout for Nighttime! The Sacred Sailors

Bryan Scary - Son of Stab

It’s very difficult to believe all the flavors Bryan Scary manages to squeeze into 3 ½ minutes, but what fantastic fun. This one has all the party folk wondering ‘just how do I dance to this?’ ‘dunno, honey, but let’s just do it!’ I’m not too dang sure what the song is about yet, but no matter, it’s a blast just trying to keep up with the music! Must be heard to believed. A cross between FrankZappa and GoodVibrations, if that’s possible. Bryan Scary

Lauren Harris - Get Over It

“As crazy as you seem to be, I know you’re just afraid.” Keen insight with upbeat rock guitars. Dance floor rock and roll romance. “Turn off the lights, see how this goes, you’ll thank me later on.” Fun party record. Lauren Harris

Lenka- The Show

“I’m just a little bit caught in the middle of life.” LOL! A fun pop with a slight flavor of bubblegum, definite fun. “I’m so scared that I don’t show it.” Fun description, especially of adolescence, but I’m afraid to tell you these feelings come up from time to time, even when you’re well past what others call ‘prime’. As Lenka says, “Let it go and just enjoy the show.” Shoutouts for Don't Let Me Fall (“here’s a little heart for you”), Trouble Is A Friend ("no matter what I feed him he always seems to grow") and Like a Song(“you left a light on inside me”). Lenka

Friday, November 28, 2008

Mike Moreno - I Have A Dream

The guitar opens this tune from 1969, with the percussion quickly adding magic. Then all stops, and the bass build and invites the keyboards. The ensemble seemingly appears together rapidly exploring the depths of this 40 year old tune. While not especially obscure, it impresses me that a younger player would be aware of it. I especially enjoy the band leader, while evident, gives the other musicians plenty of room to stretch. It sounds as if the group enjoys this also =:-)

Mike is a young Texan with the ability of doing it all. He can act as a sideman, as related below on Jazz Side Of The Moon and over 16 other albums, and he can act as band leader as evidenced here. He can interpret songs by masters, such as Herbie Hancock (I Have A Dream) & Wayne Shorter (Children Of The Night), and write his own superb tunes (Third Dream). An artist worth knowing, and following – we’ll be hearing a lot more from this guitar player. Shoutouts are due for Kevin Hayes on keyboards, Doug Weiss on bass, and Kendrick Scott on percussion. Delicious. Mike Moreno

Jazz Side Of The Moon (CD)

Five years ago we lived with a Dub Side of the Moon, which was fun in many ways, but in the end was simply an oddity. This re-creation project has been undertaken by others, and I’m enjoying all the incarnations. Taking an icon and re-interpreting it is what classical music is all about, and the ability to do this with a rock and roll icon means great things for the future of music. Which brings me to this interpretation.

What makes this CD so dynamic is that the players take the improvisational aspect of their musicianship very seriously, and it shows on this collection. This one can sit proudly on the shelf not as an oddity, but a fully realized work of dignity in its own right. Very special, and will be a wonderful gift for any 50 -60 year old you’re wondering what in the world they need this Christmas. Yes, before you ask, this will also be a gift younger folks will enjoy also. The music of this Pink Floyd album is so ingrained in our collective sub-conscious that this new elucidation will thrill us for many years to come.

This album is recorded live by four master musicians in a church, with the mikes centralized in one spot, facing different directions to add a live depth to the recording. I sit hear listening and feel like I’m sitting on stage with them, swaying back and forth learning new spiritual solitudes. Rather than simply shout-out all the tunes on the album, I’m going to shoutout the musicians. Sam Yahel smiles upon the organ, Mike Moreno dreams on guitar, Ari Hoenig drives the drums, and Seamus Blake loves the saxophone. A must-have CD. Jazz Side Of The Moon

Take 6 - Sweet Georgia Brown

The question is, can this remake of the Harlem Globetrotter’s theme song take an active part in my life in 2008? I thought not the first few times, but as these voices melded and the bass singer touched my soul upon subsequent listens, I have made the commitment to add this song to my permanent eartaste collection. These guys have always amazed me with the harmonies they are able to grasp from human voices. The shoutout is Straighten Up and Fly Right with some sweet spices added on top of these a cappella dudes by George Benson, who wisely chooses not to intrude on the voices but simply sprinkle some sweetness. Take 6

Ray Manzarek & Roy Rogers - B.E. In Memorium

Purists will say this sounds way to much like Satie. I don’t care. Ray & Roy opened the album with a Satie piece, so he;s simply paying homage. I can live with that. It’s beautiful. I haven’t a clue who B. E. might be, so if anyone can help enlighten me, I’d be grateful. In the end a piece of music must stand on its own beyond the title, and this sonata written by Ray does just that. Thanks. A shoutout for the solo take on Crystal Ship some forty years after it first appeared. Scrumptious. Another shoutout for the CharlieBrownChristmas-meets-WestSideStory flavored American Pastoral. Ray Manzarek & Roy Rogers

Gerald Veasley - Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Again)

It’s great fun when a bass player takes the front position. On this jazz version of the old Sly Stone blast from the past, Gerald takes a full chorus to remind us of the tune he’s going to improvise his heart out on. In this slow build-up, he shows how perfect he is at simply being the bottom rhythm that gets feet moving and dance floors filled. Once the set up is complete, he takes the bass on a sonic journey while the horns re-invent the tune. It works and my ears will gladly re-visit Gerald’s journey often. All the players add dreamy flavors. Gerald Veasley

Mark Knopfler - Four in a Row

Yes, this is an older tune, but it’s posted at Eartaste today because I danced to it in pure and lovely thanksgiving yesterday, and am doing so again today. The tune hangs out well with leftovers, and the guitar playing simply amazes me in Mark’s power to take me back 500 years and then forward 20 years with superb instrumental prowess. Shoutouts are Say Too Much, a jazzy pumpkin pie that sounds great with Mark’s voice, and Sons of Scotland, a second dessert of baked apple instrumental acoustic guitar. Mark Knopfler

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Echoes Therein Gale - Echoes Of Darkness Dissolve The Silence

Music that transcends the physical always attracts my attention. There is a bass player, a guitar player, and organist, and a synthesizer reaching a few inches over me to draw me outward. By looking at the song titles on this album, it is easy to see the composer is speaking of the physical world. But load this into your ipod like I did and try walking about an hour before sunrise through the hills of Texas. I have been transported to another world, willingly and easily traveling along the path created in the lines the musicians lead me toward. I often stop and close my eyes, for fear of recognizing the physical world. I have also played this through earphones while laying prone looking up at the sky. It becomes easy to be transported above my body and look down upon myself listening to music. Click on the player below and close your eyes. There is just enough tension in the music to not fully relax. That is the wave that will allow those willing to find the strength being imparted inward. Meditative, pensive, floating, choose your own adjective, I am convinced of the spiritual aspect of life by the music contained on this CD. Shoutout for Foes Of Light Beautify My Solitude. Also a fine album for fixing and eating Thanksgiving dinner to. Thanks! Echoes Therein Gale

Happy Thanksgiving!

As we enjoy this holiday we always take time to be thankful for all we have. Our friends at Ariel Publicity have put together a list of charities to help some of those we all know who help out fellow musicians in need. Choose one and share some of your bounty this year.

MusiCares provides a safety net of critical assistance for music people in times of need. MusiCares' services and resources cover a wide range of financial, medical and personal emergencies, and each case is treated with integrity and confidentiality. MusiCares also focuses the resources and attention of the music industry on human service issues that directly impact the health and welfare of the music community.

Website Link:

Donation Link:

World Hunger Year - Artists Against Hunger & Poverty

WHY is a leading advocate for innovative, community-based solutions to hunger and poverty. WHY challenges society to confront these problems by advancing models that create self-reliance, economic justice, and equal access to nutritious and affordable food. WHY was founded by a musician - the late great Harry Chapin and is currently chaired by his daughter Jen Chapin. Artists Against Hunger & Poverty (AAHP) is WHY's program that enlists performing artists to help raise funds and awareness for the most innovative and effective community-based organizations working to combat hunger and poverty. WHY offers artists, record labels, managers, agents and fan clubs an opportunity to take a stand by using their voices and resources effectively — while doing what they already do so well.

Website Link:

Donation Link: donation

Musicians on Call
Musicians On Call uses music to promote and complement the healing process for patients, families and caregivers. Musicians On Call, a nonprofit organization formed in 1999, brings live and recorded music to the bedsides of patients in healthcare facilities. Musicians On Call uses music to promote and complement the healing process for patients, families and caregivers.


Donation Link: donation

They can also use donations of classical and children’s music CDs

New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity
Hurricanes Katrina and Rita forced many musicians to flee New Orleans. Jazz, blues, and other genres that are the city's musical score, cannot return until the musicians return. Facing rising housing costs, a shortage of decent units, and a national mortgage crisis, the Musicians' Village is providing local musicians and other qualifiying partner families the opportunity to own a home in a thriving community of committed individuals and families. Conceived by Harry Connick, Jr. and Branford Marsalis, the Musicians' Village will consist of 70 single-family, Habitat-constructed homes and 10 rental units for the older "music masters" of New Orleans. Its centerpiece will be the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music, dedicated to the music education and development of homeowners and others who will live nearby.


Donation Link: donate online

Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation
The Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation (MHOF) donates new and refurbished musical instruments to underserved schools, community music programs and individual students nationwide, in an effort to give youngsters the many benefits of music education, help them to be better students and inspire creativity and expression through playing music. Because of the financial and in-kind support of concerned and motivated music lovers, more than 500,000 young students have new opportunities and experiences available to them. They have been given something that will generate lifelong benefits and memories. Teachers, parents and those in their community see every day how much this simple thing, giving a child an instrument to play, can change their life forever. In eleven years, 746 music programs and 103 schools in six states affected by Hurricane Katrina are now giving their students a better music education experience because of widespread financial and in-kind support.


Donation Link: donation

If you are interested in helping the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, there are several ways to be involved!

Donate by mailing a check or an instrument: MHOF accepts donations of gently used band and orchestral instruments. We cannot accept pianos, organs or guitars. To donate, please send your well-packaged instrument to the address below, and include your name, address, phone number and e-mail address inside the package. To expedite processing of your donation, we will accept an appraisal from a qualified music dealer of your choosing. Please include, on the dealer's official letterheard or form, the appraised value and description of your instrument. MHOF will send you a letter of thanks, with the appraised value for tax purposes. If you cannot have the instrument appraised, MHOF will have it appraised for you.

Mail to:
The Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation
15125 Ventura Blvd. Suite 204
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

Donate by phone: Call the Foundation at 818.784.6787 to contribute using your credit card.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

House Of Badger – Vultures

This hump day dance party gets started joyfully with a story about ‘birds’ who violently “wait for the hour they can come down.” But as the song progresses I sense the narrator is speaking of a society who feels they are morally correct in wreaking violence and havoc around the world simply because they enjoy a feeling of superiority over the rest of the world. The narrator is hopeful forever, with the refrain “someday we’ll change our ways” returning to haunt and uplift the soul dancing to the very interesting rhythms put together by this excellent band. Of course, it could be a tale of a morally superior person taking out their insecurities on another individual. That’s one of the things that makes this a perfect song – it can be heard from different viewpoints. The other thing that makes this a very cool song is the power of the bass, drums & synths working together instead of against each other. The shoutout tune, Into The Sun, is a beautiful voyage into psychedelia with all the crispness we are able to enjoy with modern recording equipment. An energetic tune, calling for an exciting evening of intense dance. Fantastic ending. House Of Badger

Ayo - Slow Slow (Run Run)

While the hump-day dance continues you can decide whether to run from your soul slow slow, or at the quick pace this dance induces. A bit of rock guitar, a lotta dance floor moves, and a small gospel choir makes this a very tasty pop flavored rum ball. Ayo

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Ane Brun - Gillian

“I was so tired, then the music caressed my skin,
like when someone finally holds you and you can give in. This you’ve been avoiding.
You think you’ll fall hard, but it’s just that new start.” An intriguing narration – a song about a song that deeply affected the narrator on a very specific day. That’s what happens here every day, looking for a song that touches me enough to want to write about it, and it’s funny that this song jumped off the CD and touched me the way Gillian’s song touched Ane. What a mysterious life this is. Thanks, Ane.
Ane Brun

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bruce Springsteen – Working On A Dream

“My hands are rough from working on a dream.” As good as any of the cuts on the Tracks album. Nothing musically adventurous, but some tasty background la-las hidden deep in the background give it a light 60’s feel. In a real world this would be released as a summer single, but apparently this dream song is only available by download for now, so it’s a virtual summer party in our minds. Bruce Springsteen

The Pink Spiders - Sleeping On The Floor

“Don’t let this room spin around my head.” This honestly should be a Friday night party song, because the story is about a heavy-duty hangover dream. “We were swimming in tequila, now we're sleeping on the floor.” No matter, the shouting and fun drums make this a Monday, wake up and face the week song for me. “We haven't had enough until we've had a little more.” I really don’t think I could handle this hi-energy pop’n’roll with a hangover. Not at my age anyway, but it’s a great, fun tune for folks of all ages. “I think I'm watching television, I'm not really sure.” The Pink Spiders

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Tracy Chapman - Save Us All

“My God is good in the kitchen. Makes a good meal from bread and fish, and feed the hungry, pour the wine, everybody’s welcome to have a good time. Sit at his table, enjoy the food.” It’s great to find a kindred spirit who worships the same God I do. It’s my bet many in the world will rejoin the pack over the next few years, once the politicians tone down their rhetoric of hatred, and start enjoying the mass of differences created for all of us to enjoy. Thanks Tracy, for creating a song we can all hang onto. Shoutouts for Our Bright Future and Conditional. Tracy Chapman

The British Columbians - In The Leaves

“Here in the leaves of the fallen trees, my body’s breaking down on me. I pay no mind at all.” Good Sunday afternoon meditation material. Acoustic guitars surround the narrator, with some tasty fingerpicking. “Ain’t nobody know nothing ‘bout the way I feel right now.” The drums enter for the second verse and brings up the energy to a climax where we here “a lot of people go crazy, living in the past. Maybe I’m no different, I just can’t live like that.” The first shoutout tune is an instrumental tune, working for me as a place to contemplate on the issues presented in the leaves, The Rolling Tide. The second shoutout is a more traditional sounding By And By. Sure would like to hear these guys in a pub setting, though my bet is they’ll be playing much larger venues very soon. The British Columbians

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Marianne Faithfull - Black Coffee

This bluesy cut is a good introduction to the concept of this album. This Sarah Vaughn song is paired with Salvation by the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. Seemingly not reconcilable. But on this intriguing album - covering everyone from the Decemberists to Judy Garland/Bessie Smith, from Brian Eno to Billie Holiday, from Randy Newman to Merle Haggard - Faithfull makes it work as a whole because of her unique artistry. The band helps to tie it all together, with some interesting guest stars. I truly cannot shout-out a specific cut on the album as a stand-out, because it works together as a whole. A worthy investment. Marianne Faithfull version 1 Marianne Faithfull version 2

Friday, November 21, 2008

Taj Mahal – Scratch My Back

“Chicken in the barnyard. Scratch scratch scratch scratch scratch!” Dancing shoes only, please. Funk galore, picture Taj dropping his deep folk roots into the lap of James Brown and you have Scratch My Back with a touch of Funky Penguin. Ouch! Reach those notes! “I’m itching, and I don’t know where to scratch. This album has a healthy share of must-have shoutouts. The regaae flavored Black Man, Brown Man, and the happy version of the oldie Diddy Wah Diddy are a good place to start. Fun party album. Taj Mahal

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Meiko - Heard It All Before

“I’m so tired of staring at the wall”. Yep, we’ve heard it all before, but Meiko manages to bring a freshness to the concept that is relaxing and thought-provoking. There’s enough space in the song to allow for self-reflection. “I keep finding a little piece of me every time we disagree.” Shoutout for another thought provoker, How Lucky We Are. Meiko

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Rita Engedalen - Where Does Everybody Go?

A voice that transcends ages, with songs that perfectly complement the angelic bluesiness. The guitar players flavor this meal gently, without overwhelming. The background choir enhances the gospel spices that sprinkle the entire CD. The narrator is considering the folks in her past and the way our modern world has us always on the move. It’s not horrible, as there are always new friends around the corner, but where does everybody go? The CD continues into a more shout-blues hump-day party album. Great fun, with lots to think about as I dance in circles! Shoutouts for Keep On Going, Lord Help The Poor And Needy, They Go From The North To The South, You Are The Light. Rita Engedalen

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Conor Oberst - Sausalito

“There's no sorrow that the sun's not gonna help.” I quote lyrics a lot in this blog, because I love a good line, a story, something to catch onto to remind me I’m alive. I also read a lot of poetry, and have a tendency to separate song poems and literary poetry, mostly because the literature works more subliminally, using language to emote more than what’s being said on the page. Why bring all this up? What intrigues me about Conor is his imagery. I’ve listened over and over and will capture one image and dwell on it for awhile, enough to miss the rest of the song. Next time another image lingers. For example, in this song we go from a short story about Sausalito to an iceberg, then quickly to the pilgrims. It works on the level of poetry, bringing all these images into feelings that are extremely personal and self-satisfying. What intrigues me about this is the music is so good, and works. It doesn’t hurt that he’s very confident in his performance. I believe he means it, and even if I can’t pretend to understand the story, I understand the emotions I’m being moved to feel. Shoutouts for Get-Well Cards (“all the peacock people left the plumes in a pile”), and the powerful meditation Milk Thistle (“You bring peace to midnight like a spotted owl”).

A special note for the lovely tune Danny Callahan (“What gauge measures miracles?”), mostly because whether I’m right or not, seems to me to be about a young boy who died from cancer. That’s what I get from the lyric, one of the few I can follow as a full, deeply felt story. Sometimes when I listen to the album I’m feeling like this entire album is about Danny Callahan. There’s another key song, I Don't Want to Die In the Hospital, that enhances this thought for me.

Conors been on stage for many years now, and is a master at bringing the audience into his world. He manages to capture that fairly well on this new album, however his recent internet performance is absolutely mesmerizing. [LINK TO STREAM] I love this lyric from Nikorette: “I don’t want to go to your Mason lodge. There’s nothing more sad than a lynching mob full of rational men who believe in God.” I know exactly where that lyric comes from because I live in a very small town with 7 churches and a Mason Lodge. The men who are Lodge Members belong to these churches. I have acquaintances among them, most of them men who are not many years older than me. I always come away from the conversations extremely sad and confused. These men are proud of participating in some of the last lynchings that took place in Texas – right here in this ton and the next county over – in the 1970’s. I was at a “Christian Youth Concert” earlier this year as a volunteer and hear on stage one of the performers waxing on about the fact that there are no Jewish Synagogues anywhere to be found in the hills of Texas, and people, including children, were actually cheering. I asked the guy sitting next to me what that was all about and he smiled and said, “We chased them out of town even before we chased the blacks out.” No regret, no sadness, a true sense of pride.

Scary people I am living among. These are the same type of people that were shouting “Kill him Kill Him” when Sarah Palin spoke and were Booing when McCain mentioned Obama in his concession speech. They’re still alive and walking among us. I have talked about this with another guy, a bit younger than me, and I thought a bit more knowledgeable about the rest of the world because he has done some traveling and teaching overseas. He pointed out that when I was in the army, and then came home to protest against the war, that the Vietnam war was filling all the newspapers – people in the hills were simply ignored by the media. Then he said a few scary things. I think its Texans in general, they simply have this feeling that God is white. I know there’s a book in all this. Just the fact that lynchings were taking place in America in the 1970’s simply amazes me – it’s not a part of our popular history. It’s in all their collective memories, and there seems to be no guilt or shame. One of my supervisors told me that when they were younger there was a huge sign right outside of town that said “If you’re black, turn back.” This is not new, and I’ve probably told bits and pieces of this story in this blog before, but it all comes pouring out of my brain and into my fingers because Conor said all this and more in 25 words or less. A true poet. “I don’t want to go to your Mason lodge. There’s nothing more sad than a lynching mob full of rational men who believe in God.”

Conor Oberst

Monday, November 17, 2008

Squarepusher – Delta V

I don’t usually talk about the blurbs inside the records, but this particular artist is largely instrumental based, plus his story is fascinating. He had a vivid daydream about a band, and the surreal stage set that became an integral part of the band. I won’t give away any of the good parts, but I will let you in on the fact this is basically a soundtrack to a daydream. And, it works. Delta V is a full-force rock band waking me up without the need for coffee on a Monday. Vivid, colorful, and exciting – my week is alive with energy already. Shoutouts for some other parts of this dream, Potential Govaner & Duotone Moonbeam. Squarepusher

The Spinto Band – Vivian Don’t

“Vivian, don't ever insist they will if they won’t. And why should I wait until you swear to stay when you left yesterday?” The grammar is fun to follow with these guys, and the music is fun, and believe it or not the singing is fun. Point is? These are fun songs by a bunch of guys looking for a party. Shoutouts for Summer Grof (I looked up grof – no luck), The Cat's Pajamas, They All Laughed, and the philosophical Alphabetical Order (“Alphabetizing can be calming. It's easy to order your life by the arbitrary symbols of phonies. I'd like to see what life was like before we were reading. I'm sure we'd be needing some sort of organization to categorize our things. Would we need arranging if A means nothing? And finding it means meandering in between the ends of nothing in writing”). The Spinto Band

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Phil Keaggy – Phantasmagorical (CD)

This is not an official Christmas album. In fact, it came out in August. However, it’s my favorite seasonal album of the year. I can’t tell you why it feels seasonal to me – I think it has to do with the overwhelming sense of peace that Phil is able to elicit from his instrument. Beauty is a word that fits. I look back at all the music Phil has enlightened me with over the years, and I should be amazed at how much this album affects me, but I’m not. I first knew him as a master songwriter, inspiring me to think fully of my place in the world, and in the 70’s and 80’s I came to know him as a master musician who had the gift of translating the gifts he was given from the Master onto physical recordings. I’ve seen Phil play in small churches, and it’s easy to become emotionally involved in his creativity in a small group setting. Everyone gets touched by the spirit that is unique to live music everywhere around the world. Capturing that spirit on a recording is not as easy. Phil has that gift, and it works for me all year round. As I get old and sentimental and simply falling more and more deeply in love with the depths we are allowed to visit emotionally as humans, I savor this album for the Season for Joy, the Season of Peace, the Season of Love that we celebrate, while at the same time praying with the whole world that this season stops being several weeks a year, but find it carried over to every hour of every day of the year. Some titles that bring the depth to the surface are Like Snow Before The Sun, The Journey Home, Oh Boy, and Father And Son. Phil Keaggy

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Andy Juhl - Feeling Bliss

I’ve been in this situation. Pour out your sweat and tears in front of an audience for 3 or 4 hours and I feel like I’m just warming up. Tons of energy is still flowing through my body. What to do? Some people know. The musicians gather and really start jamming. “The crowd has all gone home, it’s not too late for music from the band.” No longer performing, but living the music, it’s a tremendous feeling. “Friends gather round with arms wide open and I’m feeling bliss, singing through this hazy mist.” As the sun begins to come up the musicians realize they need to move on to their day jobs, but still, for the main character the “music lingers in my open mind, the sound is keeping me always on the run.” Cool poetry, with a matching melody, I’m loving this.

Send The Rain is a folk tune for the past few years, where the drought has made even more small farmers close up shop. “There is no more green grass left for the cow.” The narrator of this song is moving on, but he’s still praying, “help the poor people who are left behind.” I love the way Andy decided to keep the instrumentation sparse and sounding as if the farmer himself is singing the song.

Prairie Home is about a country gentleman who went to the city, but decided for his own sanity to return to his roots. He made a friend while in the city, and sings, “I won’t see you again, but I’ll smile each time you’re on my mind.”

The Wind And The Buffalo is a simple instrumental guitar tune that pulls it’s strength from the intensity of the guitar strumming.

We Belong To The Earth is a full band tour-de-force that relishes the irony that mankind has created rules that are totally ignorant of the truths that live among us. “You say you own this piece of land? You better listen to the wind.” Our rules and customs seem to completely ignore the fact that we are only here temporarily, and our actions leave a footprint. This album begins with the feeling of bliss, and leaves us that way. Nice work!

Andy Juhl

Andy on Eartaste

Concha Buika - Culpa Mia

The narrator sings that “it’s my fault.” Whosever fault this is, it’s fantastic. Just as spectacular as her other albums (good gift ideas for the people you know who ‘have everything’). We start this tune with a flamenco feel and a minute in we’re joined by trumpets, evoking dreams of the world dancing together. The pianist adds to the spell, and the recipe that comes to fill my ears can only be described as flamenco jazz. Scrumptious, I love the way the song builds in strength. Shoutouts for the title tune, La niña de fuego, and the more traditional flavors of Mentirosa. Concha Buika

Other fine albums by Concha Buika:
2005 - Mestizuo
2006 - Buika
2007 - Mi Niña Lola
2008 - Niña de Fuego

Worth Digging Out Desk Cleanup 3 of 3

Herman Dune - 1 2 3 Apple Tree
Noah And The Whale - 5 Years Time
Emiliana Torrini - Big Jumps
Yelle - Dans Ta Vrai Vie
Spirit Of The West - Another Happy New Year
Field Music - Don't Pass Me By
The Grates - Carve Your Name
Broadcast 2000 - Everybody And Me
The Explorers Club - Do You Love Me
Franz Ferdinand - Lucid Dreams
The Sea And Cake - Fuller Moon
Beck - Orphans
Tilly And The Wall - Jumbler
Bloc Party - Signs
The Raconteurs - Many Shades Of Black
Cold War Kids - Something Is Not Right With Me
Stereolab - Neon Beanbag
Bears - Wait And See
The Faint - The Geeks Were Right
Corey Crowder - Look How Far We've Come
Ian McGlynn - This Is The Sound

Friday, November 14, 2008

Worth Digging Out Desk Cleanup 2 of 3

Little Man Tate - Hey Little Sweetie
Lykke Li - Let It Fall
My Little Pony - MacGyver Blues
Stars - 14 Forever
Hello Saferide - Anna
The Courteeners - No You Didn't No You Don't
The Hot Puppies - Clarinet Town
The School - I Want You Back
A Big Yes And A Small No - I'm Always Manic (When I'm Around You)
My Little Pony - MacGyver Blues
Pearl And The Puppets - Because I Do
Sam Roberts - Detroit '67
The Foxes - Trauma Town
Ben Folds - Bitch Went Nuts
Deerhoof - Offend Maggie
Emiliana Torrini - Jungle Drum
Johnny Foreigner - DJ's Get Doubts
The Spinto Band - Vivian, Don't
Chairlift - Bruises
Dressy Bessy - Do You Whisper
Her Space Holiday - The Truth Hurts So This Should Be Painless
Lykke Li - Let It Fall
All Girl Summer Fun Band - This Will Never End
Electric Six - Flashy Man
Of Montreal - For Our Elegant Caste

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Worth Digging Out Desk Cleanup 1 of 3

I'm cleaning up my desk & trying to bring some order back, so for the next few days you'll see a list of cool songs by cool groups that you can dig out on Amazon or CDBaby. Worth the search.

The Submarines - Epic Air Voyage
Noah And The Whale - Shape Of My Heart
The All New Adventures Of Us - Firetruck
Anni Rossi - Machine
Of Montreal - And I've Seen A Bloody Shadow
The View - Five Rebecca's
Pearl And The Puppets - Make Me Smile
The Boat People - Awkward Orchid Orchard
Conor Oberst - Gentlemen's Pact
Josephine Oniyama - No Fiction
Beach House - Used To Be
The Smittens - Half My Heart Beats
Death Cab For Cutie - No Sunlight
Liam Finn - Better To Be
Dear And The Headlights - I'm Not Crying. You're Not Crying, Are You
The Walkmen - On The Water
Her Space Holiday - The Year In Review
The Apples In Stereo - Same Old Drag
The School - Shoulder
Stars And Sons - In The Ocean
Hello Seahorse! - Won't Say Anything
Bearsuit - Itsuko Got Married
Psapp - Part Like Waves

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Brad Paisley - Huckleberry Jam

Been enjoying the guitar laying on this album for over a week now. While slightly country-flavored, I can taste lots of spices that have influenced this guy to practice practice practice and keep my earbuds alive with sweet hump-day dancing alongside a margarita bliss. I have always wished for an instrumental album from some of these guys who sound like they know what they’re doing on guitar but throw in silly lyrics to keep our minds off their instrumental abilities. Not this time. Lots and lots of guitar. Shoutout for Turf’s Up, Kim, and goodness, gracious, Kentucky Jelly smiles with lots of other instruments joining in the virtuoso party. And no hump-day party would be complete without a bit of swing, so there’s more shoutouts where those came from. I love the tribute to Les Paul, slyly called Les Is More. What? You want more? Okay, just for you. I can’t sit down for Cluster Pluck, and love the head banging dance giggle of Cliffs of Rock City. Of course, the night isn’t complete without BB King coming by and joining in on Let The Good Times Roll. “Hail to the king!” A party I won’t forget for a long time, because I plan to keep repeating this CD for a long time. Regular readers will recall I shouted out a part of this album on election night last week, so if you haven’t figured out by now - this album is an excellent investment of your ear time. Brad Paisley

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Handcuffs - I Just Wanna Be Free, Man

“Yeah man, I’m planetary bound.” I love any song by a space alien, and this one even does the shang-a-lang. Musically we’re traveling through the airwaves of the 60’s with tasty pop psychedelia, “I’m getting bored and I cannot wait, man.” Jump and jingle jangle all night with flavors snuck into the mix from late 70s girlpunkbliss. A shout-out for God Is Sure One Funny Girl (“there’s always somebody got something to say”) ! Should be out & for sale soon! I’ll see what I can do about letting you hear it on our little radio on the left while we wait. The Handcuffs

The Handcuffs on Eartaste

Monday, November 10, 2008

Adam Marsland & Cockeyed Ghost - Big Big Yeah

“The inside joke was on me”. Raving pop full of humor, both lyrically and musically. Apparently there’s a party of sorts, a lame band is playing, and there’s free food to be had. Well, when there’s food in a song you know I’ve got to taste it, and this one comes across as a wild and woolly wake me up it’s Monday enjoy the week and laugh at life pop and roll. So, I will. Thanks! Adam Marsland

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Putumayo Presents A Jazz And Blues Christmas (CD)

The season is upong us, and I thought I’d review a batch of these early this year so you can have new music floating around your house directly after the thanksgiving meal. This is America, after all, and the CD I’m listening to is a perfect example of America. Putumayo has put together a compilation of seasonal songs that are very seldom heard by great artists, and there’s no reason for it except for our silly traditions of “White Christmas”. This year we can happily lay that aside and hear BB King doing Christmas Celebration, Ray Charles rocking out on Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Charles Brown (who wrote several Christmas hits for Elvis) doing a wonderful Santa’s Blues, and a very special treat – the Ramsey Lewis Trio performing Here Comes Santa Claus. There’s much more to enjoy – Randy Greer doing another Charles Brown composition, plus a regular stable of Putumayo selections of lesser known artists from around the globe who belong smack dab in the middle of your palette, Mighty Blue Kings, The Dukes of Dixieland, Emilie-Claire Barlow and the Ignasi Teraza Trio. A total gourmet package with many flavorful seasonings – a perfect hour to start off this season with. A Jazz And Blues Christmas

Putumayo on Eartaste

Los Lonely Boys - Christmas Spirit (CD)

“It’s all about giving & spreading love & peace and joy.” Amen to that. As the narrator sings “I long for Christmas all year long” I think we have a year in which this deep longing in our society can return. The severe and angry Christians in our country who have preached hatred of all things human for 20 years are re-examining their lives while the hopeful flavor of Christianity has returned to the air. This CD rocks and brings me to the dance floor with plenty of joyful swing, and of course some sweet guitar work. Even when the Boys take off into the traditional flavors, like Carol Of The Bells, the playful spirit excels and excites. The bar spirit of Jingle Bells even brings me hope that someday we may be able to have a community bar of love again here in the hills of Texas. Los Lonely Boys