Mikey Junior – Traveling South


Philadelphia, known more for its rhytm & blues than traditional blues, is nevertheless the home to some outstanding blues musicians including harmonica virtuoso Steve Guyger, the sultry young singer Gina Sicilia, and the up-and-coming, hardworking blues harp standout Mikey Junior. Mikey Junior, who often homesteads at the Twisted Tail in Philly’s South Street area, has embraced a musical style […] more »


Old Settler’s Music Fest – 2014 Edition


Every spring, a couple of weeks after the madhouse of SXSW, the music festival season kicks off with Old Settler’s Music Festival, about a half hour outside of Austin.  Started as a bluegrass festival, Old Settler’s now embraces a broad spectrum of Americana.  Organizer Jean Spivey has a magic touch for consistently mixing old with […] more »


DBT Slays Boston


50 years old. At that age, you’d think that most people would be settling into their career. Yet Patterson Hood still seems like he’s got lots new to say. He and Mike Cooley may be a little bit older, but they’ve definitely still got a hard-edged guitar attack and a heck of a lot of […] more »


SXSW 2014 — The Sounds, Part 1

THE HOLD STEADY While I may not be as crazy the friend who chased the band around Austin for the band’s 7 planned shows, I wasn’t going to pass up a chance to see the Brooklyn rockers celebrate their first album in 4 years. I accompanied said friend to the front of the stage where […] more »


Southern Soul Assembly at the Saenger Theatre, Mobile, Alabama

Southern Soul Assembly

So I’m in Mobile, AL this week for my day job.  As I’m eating lunch Tuesday I look up and see a poster for the Southern Soul Assembly, featuring JJ Grey, Luther Dickinson, Anders Osborne and Marc Broussard.  And it’s that night at the Saenger Theatre about a block from my hotel. I rush out […] more »


Nickel Creek – A Dotted Line


Nine year itch? Well nine years can’t come fast enough. Nickel Creek albums have instrumental brilliance throughout, folky, experimental, bluegrass, and true band dynamics. The albums can be uneven at times, but such sheer brilliance shines through each album. So I thought that a reunion album would be the diet coke of Nickel Creek. Strangely, […] more »


The Annie Ford Band

Annie Ford

The PR blurb that came with the release talks about how Annie Ford was reared in the “sparse, rustic darkness of rural America.”  One of the notes from my first listen to the release was, “what David Lynch would have used if he chose bluegrass for Twin Peaks.”  From those two comments I think you […] more »


Mayer’s Playlist for Feb/Mar 2014, Part 2

ALBUMS OF THE MONTHS English Oceans, by Drive-By Truckers I suppose that this review could be titled “Cooley Steps Out.” The band co-founder, who has historically contributed only a couple of songs per release, is credited with six songs on English Oceans. Ever better, they are some of his strongest songs in years. The opening […] more »


Nick Moss Band – Time Ain’t Free


Nick Moss paid his dues, working as a side man for veteran Chicago bluesmen, including Buddy Scott, Jimmy Dawkins, Jimmy Rogers and former Muddy Waters drummer Willie “Big Eyes” Smith. Those blues chops, hard earned, provided the backbone for Moss to lead his own formidable blues outfit for more than a decade. A student of […] more »


The Grass is Always Bluer – The Seldom Scene


At twangville, we love our rootsy music but thus far we haven’t given one of the most distinct strains of country its due. And that will change today. I’ve had my own personal bluegrass renaissance and at the hands of the skilled pickers of the  Seldom Scene. The band has made a habit of bringing […] more »


Lost & Nameless, Cody Jasper

Empty Spaces, the latest EP from Lost & Nameless opens with a title track that is perhaps best described as an Americana tango.  So right from the get-go you know this is going to be an interesting listen.  The remainder of the record does not disappoint.  Lost & Nameless is an Austin-based group composed of […] more »


Josh Ritter’s Acoustic Magic

Josh Ritter Acoustic Trio @ The Somerville Theatre Somerville, MA: March 6, 2014 Joy. It’s just the first word that comes to mind when I think of this show, Josh Ritter’s face, the songs played, the energy between the 3 men on stage. Ritter has been touring for nearly 1 year straight since the release […] more »


Water Liars

Water Liars/Water Liars When listening to new bands these days I usually don’t do much “research” on the artist in fear that I’ll find something about them that pisses me off.  Like they used to cover John Mayer or something…  No seriously, sometimes I just like to be introduced to an artist through their music.  […] more »


Girls Guns and Glory


If you were to waltz into a Girls, Guns, and Glory show in Boston, you might think you were dreaming. Ward Hayden on stage seems like he walked out of a honky tonk. He wears the hat, has the mannerisms, hell he even smiles like a classic country singer. Small town Franklin MA and their […] more »


Mayer’s Playlist for Feb/Mar 2014, Part 1

I suppose that Lydia Loveless could have gone in two directions after 2011’s outstanding Indestructible Machine... more »


Matthew Ryan benefit for John Anderson