Ana Egge – Bright Shadow

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In New York, Chicago, San Francisco, you can still find dimly lit, low-ceiling basement clubs, surprisingly full even on a weeknight, where you can get a stiff drink and a soberingly good jazz band.  You can’t smoke in them anymore, but that smoky sound still comes from a singer whose voice seems earned from whisky and cigarettes […]

Mayer’s Picks – the Best of 2015 (So Far), the Albums

Here, in no particular order, are some of my favorite releases from the first half of 2015. COMPLICATED GAME by JAMES MCMURTRY As he celebrates the release of his first album in six years, there’s a part of me that wishes that McMurtry was more prolific. Then I remember that it takes time to craft […]

Tweed River Talk – A Few Words with Dan Blakeslee

Our latest interview is with Somerville, MA-based folk troubadour Dan Blakeslee. Blakeslee has released numerous albums, the most recent of which is 2014’s Owed to the Tangled Wind. The album was recorded at the Columbus Theatre in Providence, RI by Ben Knox Miller and Jeffrey Prystowsky (The Low Anthem) and earned Blakeslee recognition as the […]

Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams

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Although Larry Campbell has released a number of his own recordings, he is known more for his associations than solo work. He is such a versatile musician it would almost be easier to list instruments he does not play. Most recently he garnered acclaim as a producer for Levon Helm’s final albums. Both albums, “Dirt […]

Short Takes – Three Gems For Summer

There has been a lot of good music cross my desk in the last couple of months, and I’ve finally internalized I’m not going to get to all of it.  Summer’s here, though, and it’s important to have some new music in your player.  So here are some short takes on albums I’m really enjoying, but […]

Leaf Rapids – Lucky Stars

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“The aim of every artist is to arrest motion, which is life, by artificial means and hold it fixed so that a hundred years later, when a stranger looks at it, it moves again since it is life.” William Faulkner was known not just for long sentences, but also his ability to so luridly set […]

Monday Morning Video – Vintage Los Lobos

Let’s kick it old school this week with a classic from one of rock music’s true legends. These guys can do it all, from the Mexican music of their heritage to blues to rock and everything in-between. Here’s a full concert from 1989 that proves the point. Over the course of an hour-long show they […]

Old Settler’s Music Festival 2015 Edition

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My favorite weekend of the year has come and gone again.  A couple of weeks after the over-sized crowds, egos, and marketing campaigns of SXSW comes a music festival in the hill country outside Austin that’s just about the music.  With only 15,000 attendees, and a couple of stages, you can see at least a […]

Mayer’s Playlist for March/April 2015, Part 2

ALBUMS OF THE MONTH Down To Believing, by Allison Moorer Real life is often the best inspiration for art, notably when it is created in response to heartache and sorrow. Such is the case for Allison Moorer, who channels her emotions into a collection of songs that is by turns sad, angry, regretful and defiant. […]