Actual Wolf is country rock for people who love country & rock music... oh yeah, and bad-ass country funk.
There are outlaws, and there are outlaws. Actual Wolf is a real outlaw and has pled guilty to it. In and out of the slammer since age 16 and/or whenever the mood strikes. And like Charlie Manson and Johnny Cash recorded music in prison, Actual Wolf recorded a pair of EPs while serving time - each showing 'another side of the Wolf.' The first is USA, an everyman’s acoustic album that channels both Woody and Dylan. The second, Lightning & the Wolf conjures a 30-something’s symphony to Gawd, a rock EP at times so ethereal that it floats like smoke up into the aether, at others so earthy & grounded you can almost feel the parole.
This show is the official West Coast digital release party for the brand-spankin' new release, Faded Days. Check it here: https://www.redhouserecords.com/store/faded-days
Country Joe McDonald will celebrate the 50th anniversary of his landmark Electric Music For Mind & Body with a special show at San Francisco’s Great American Music Hall on Friday, June 9. The Woodstock veteran and his classic Country Joe and the Fish helped kick off the Summer Of Love with the May 11, 1967 release of their debut, Electric Music for the Mind and Body, which is credited as one of the first breakthrough San Francisco psychedelic records. A few weeks later, they performed at the first great rock music festival Monterey Pop Festival in June 1967
As previously reported,, McDonald recently released his appropriately titled new album, 50. McDonald first started working on the new batch of songs, which features The Tubes’ Prairie Prince and members of his band, in 2015. They returned to the studio 25 times to perfect the material. - Jambands.com
As the editor of a blog like this one—I was eleven years old when Elvis ate his final fried peanut butter and banana sandwich and frankly I doubt that I listen to him more often than once annually myself—I’m acutely aware of the balance between nostalgia and discovery. The biggest cohort of our readership is comprised of millennials. If nearly a third of young Brits have never purposefully or consciously listened to an Elvis Presley number, then how many of them would know a DEVO song? If you were born in 1965 or 1975, how much knowledge of the music of the 1940s or 1950s do you realistically possess? DEVO’s heyday is even further back than that for someone who is a high school senior in 2017. “Oldies” radio doesn’t play Herman’s Hermits, the Supremes or Sonny & Cher anymore, it programs Sting, Nirvana and Celine Dion where that format even still exists.
So where would that leave the legacy of a cult artist like Gram Parsons, who died in 1973 at the age of 26 with but a small, yet influential body of work, as the 21st-century marches ever onward? If you are of a certain age, and presuming that you are a pretty big music fan, you no doubt have heard and hopefully appreciate the “cosmic American music” of this golden-voiced country rock progenitor/genius. To be sure, I think that there’s still a pretty strong Gram Parsons cult out there, but in 2017 its members tend to be know-it-all baby boomers with graying ponytails who want to give you their opinions of whatever album you happen to be looking at in a record store.
Only in Southern California, always a stronghold of Flying Burrito Bros. fandom, does there seem to be an organic all ages awareness of the great Gram Parsons. This has much to do with the desert and how inextricably intertwined the desert trip is with the mythos of Parsons’ death by OD in room 8 of the Joshua Tree Inn and how his body was subsequently stolen and given a drunken cremation near Cap Rock by his manager, Phil Kaufman.
It’s a SoCal rite of passage to do magic mushrooms in Joshua Tree and trip out under the desert stars listening to The Gilded Palace of Sin by the Flying Burrito Bros. as there is simply no greater soundtrack for this sort of activity in that particular place and I’d wager that 99% of all the patrons of Pappy & Harriett’s, whether young or old, male or female could readily identify any song from it that came on their jukebox. But again, it’s specifically a desert kinda thing. Let’s assume that the rest of the country’s Gram Parsons fans are probably spread out a little bit more.
Which is why the word needs to get out about Intervention Records’ recently released vinyl and (upcoming) SACD re-issue of The Gilded Palace of Sin. Mastered by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio, this is one of the best-sounding slabs of wax that I’ve ever heard in my entire life, which is exactly what you would want someone to say if you’re a new boutique record label catering to the snobbiest of jaded (and easily disappointed) audiophiles. Think you’ve heard it all? Wait until you’ve heard this! That beautiful young man’s quivering, vulnerable, plaintive voice, those harmonies with Chris Hillman and the exquisite chime of Sneaky Pete Kleinow’s buzzing, warmly-distorted almost psychedelic steel guitar, it’s all there in the grooves as never before, like they coaxed some extra music particles off the low generation analog tapes it was mastered from. Since I first heard The Gilded Palace of Sin in the early 90s—yes I was in Joshua Tree, and yes I was tripping under the desert stars—I’ve listened to it hundreds of times, but this is something else entirely. Always an exhilarating—and well-recorded—album to begin with, this absolutely sparkling pressing by Intervention represents the apex of the state of the art analog “triple A” production (no digital anywhere in the workflow) going today. They even make a new vinyl stamper after every 5000 uses so every copy is a “hot stamper.” I’ll say that again: If you’re looking for some primo vinyl to throw at your turntable, this is as good as it gets, a record you will find yourself flipping over and playing again and again and again. (And although I’d bet this is their showpiece, Intervention Records have also released exquisite editions of classic albums by Joe Jackson, Big Audio Dynamite, Stealers Wheel and they’ve announced some upcoming Judee Sill releases. Everything I’ve heard from them is crazy good, 10/10 stuff. Every audiophile should keep an eye on what they’re releasing.) - Dangerous Minds
Click HERE to read the rest of The Bay Bridged's preview!
"We write songs as a way for us to keep a scrapbook of our lives," says Laura Rogers, one half of the traditional-country harmony duo the Secret Sisters. On their vulnerable new album, You Don't Own Me Anymore, Laura and sibling Lydia Rogers flip the book open wide, revealing their most personal project to date. Produced by Brandi Carlile, the sisters' third album arrives June 9th on New West Records, but is streaming in its entirety below on Rolling Stone Country.
Take a listen HERE!
Barry Zito is coming back to the Bay Area and you have 2 chances to see him. Barry has been busy writing and recording songs and he's performing them at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco on Sunday May 28th. On Monday May 29th, Memorial Day, Barry Zito returns to the field at AT&T Park for pre game festivities and a San Francisco Giants salute to the military. I had the good fortune to talk to Barry and you can hear that interview and his music here... - Teri King / 96.5 KOIT
This lineup at the Great American Music Hall is the perfect pairing of two feel-good bands whose music spreads funk-soul joy and whose contagious butt shakes make everyone dance.
“They are high-energy, interactive with the crowd, and make people feel positive,” Planet Booty frontman Dylan Germick said of Flynt Flossy and Turquoise Jeep. “Those three things right there, that’s a match made in heaven for us.”
“It is going to be a really fun show, full of dancing and laughing and grinding.” - Carla Bova / The Bay Bridged
Read the full article HERE!
Take a listen HERE!
Over the course of their decade together, the Bay Area-based psych rock band Sleepy Sun — comprised of Bret Constantino (vocals), Evan Reiss (guitar), Matt Holliman (guitar) and Brian Tice (drums) — have released five full-length albums that have established the band’s reputation for crafting material that sounds as though it owes an equal debt to 60s psych rock, classic rock, shoegaze and dream pop, and while at times being warmly familiar, they’ve managed to be put a unique spin upon it. Interestingly enough, with Private Tales, Sleepy Sun’s forthcoming album, the members of the band find themselves taking a much different approach than with their previously recorded albums, and as you’ll hear on the album’s first single “Seaquest,” the members of the Bay Area-based band have gone for a lush, more spacious — hell, much more patient approach with the song revealing nuanced layers and emotions upon repeated listens, while retaining the gorgeous guitar work and soaring hooks that have won them attention. However, whereas the band managed to sound cosmic, the new single evokes placidly (and somewhat aimlessly) sailing off into a gorgeous sunset, and the sensation of just quietly digging your surroundings and your place in the world. And in light of a world and sociopolitical climate that has gone absolutely mad, sometimes you need to take a moment to just exist. - Joy of Violent Movement
On July 5, 1994, Green Day was poised to emerge from the punk cocoon of 924 Gilman and develop into a band that has delivered a decades-long run of bird-flipping, thought-provoking and hit-making music.
But before they grabbed headlines by inciting a mass mud fight at Woodstock ‘94 and ignited the charts with blistering punk salvos like “Welcome to Paradise” and “When I Come Around,” Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dirnt and Tré Cool bid one last goodbye to the small-club scene of the Bay Area, playing an intimate show at San Francisco nightclub Slim’s to host a bon-voyage party that still rattles the minds of the lucky few who attended.
"Green Day Rising: Before the Dookie Flew” captures the band at the cusp of mainstream success with dozens of never-before-seen photos and on-the-scene reporting, delivering an intimate portrait of a phenomenon-to-be that obscurity couldn’t confine, genre couldn’t define and the world had no idea was coming.
Check out the book (and fans' memories of the show) HERE!
Julian Koster (Neutral Milk Hotel) and Night Vale Presents invite you into the world of popular new podcast The Orbiting Human Circus (of the Air) with this enchanting live immersive evening of songs, stories, games, magic, and more by the Music Tapes (Elephant 6 Collective/Merge Records).
About The Orbiting Human Circus (of the Air) Podcast: Both an immersive theatrical experience and a musical show, this evening commemorates the release of The Orbiting Human Circus (of the Air), a fictional narrative podcast created by Julian Koster (Neutral Milk Hotel) and presented by the creators of Welcome to Night Vale (one of the most downloaded podcasts of all time). Spend an evening with the show’s lead character, the hapless Janitor of the Eiffel Tower - played by Koster - who will attempt, and fail, to clean this very venue, as surreal events, songs (by the Music Tapes), and magic simply happen all around him (and you). Debuting in the top ten on iTunes’ podcast charts, the podcast—a combination of cinematic audio narrative, song, and sound collage—has reached a loving cult fandom all over the world, has been featured in The New York Times, Pitchfork, and Spin, and was named one of The Guardian’s top podcasts of 2016.
About the Music Tapes: Founded by Koster and Robbie Cucchiaro, the Music Tapes, seminal members of the beloved Elephant 6 Collective, are known for creating unique and extraordinary live events. Their most recent show, 2012’s The Traveling Imaginary, toured in a circus tent with its own carnival of surreal games. This tour, in support of Merge Records’ release of the new Orbiting Human Circus EP - a collection of songs from the podcast and the Music Tapes’ sixth release on the revered indie label—might be the Music Tapes’ most ambitious offering to date.
The video for 'Maybe A Moment,' a track from Justin Townes Earle's upcoming eighth album "Kids In The Street," is a bit of a blast from the past for the singer-songwriter.
The clip, directed by Alicia J. Rose, tracks two young women traveling together, hitchhiking and eventually ending up in a rundown club where Earle is performing the song on stage. "It reminded me a lot of playing the Springwater in Nashville," Earle tells Billboard. "When I was 15 years old I would play from noon 'til seven at night there. There used to be this [girl] that showed up in mini-skirts and halter tops and she and her friends would dance in front of the stage. There'd be two old drunks at the bar, the girls dancing in front of me -- and those girls never looked like the ones in the video, that's for sure."
And while the actresses seem to be portraying a lesbian couple, Earle hopes it's open to interpretation. "Really, it's just two young girls, one kind of egging the other on, like young kids do," he explains. The song itself, meanwhile, is drawn from some of Earle's own misspent, egging-on youth.
"It's one of the more autobiographical songs I've ever written," he notes. "When we were kids in Nashville whose parents wouldn't pay attention to you, we'd stay out all night. By 12 and 13 I would jump in a car with older boys and go to Memphis to see punk rock shows, drink Olde English 800s, smoke shitty s--tty and try to get back before school -- before we quit that and stopped going to school. We were doing all sorts of things we weren't supposed to do at fairly young ages. Looking back nostalgically now I wouldn't want to do it again, but there's something amazing I always remember about that, getting into the car and taking off on the highway with a bunch of idiots."
"Kids In The Street" is due out May 26, and marks the first time Earle has recorded outside of Nashville, working with producer Mike Mogis (Bright Eyes, First Aid Kit) in Omaha, Neb. "When you grow up with Nasvhille musicians and all the people there, it's hard to think about making a record anywhere else," Earle says. "The first thing that drew me (to Mogis) was the fact he had mixed M. Ward's "Hold Time" record and he also recorded Jenny Lewis' "Rabbit Fur Coat" record; those were just amazing sounding records, and he has great ideas. I mean, nobody in Nashville would've said, 'Let's put a bajo sexto on this song;' they would've tried to copy it with a guitar and something else and complicated it."
It's also Earle's first album since becoming a father, and while he finds plenty to grouse about, particularly the gentrification of some of his old Nashville neighborhoods, on the album, "Kids In The Street" finds him significantly more settled and easygoing throughout.
"These songs were definitely from somebody who's more clearheaded and married, for sure," Earle acknowledges. "I think that I do see things from a more calm and lucid perspective these days, and that has a lot to do with my wife." The couple is also expecting their first child in July. "We'll see what the kid does to [the music]," Earle says. "This record was written and in the can when we found out she was pregnant. I was actually in the studio when I found out; I was just kind of, 'Holy shit, I'm gonna have a kid' and blanked out the rest of the night."
Earle returns to the road Thursday (April 27) with The Sadies as his band, and shows currently booked into early June. "I couldn't ask for a better band to do it with," Earle says. "We've done shows together; I've opened for them, they've opened for me. We've never actually gotten a chance to work together, but I've been looking for a reason to for a long time, and here it is." - Billboard