From time to time, I like to reach out to our stable of Cream contributors and see what folks have been listening to in their spare time. As we've explained before, we professional music writers spend much — probably most, really — of our time listening to albums that we're currently dissecting and analyzing for some sort of assignment. But occasionally, on our least cynical days, we do indeed turn on the record players, Spotifys, iTuneses, iPods, stereos and radios just for pleasure. And that's what What We're Listening To is for. Have a look after the jump to find out what records the Cream has been spinning. We've got contributions this go-round from freelancers Edd Hurt, Jewly Hight, Lance Conzett and Seth Graves, not to mention a little something from yours truly. Here, I'll go first:
But hey, let’s get political for a minute — as some artists often to do — to show you exactly why I’m choosing to abstain. We all get frustrated with the imbalance of wrong and right in the world. Sometimes, we can’t help but break out the soapbox and make our voices heard. After all, it’s your goddamn right. On the other hand, I’m about to give you a whole slew of reasons to change your mind. Protest songs have often been the backbone of many a political movement. The right song at the right time can galvanize an entire generation, serving as a call to arms and a catalyst for change. In fact, the best protest songs live on for ages despite their agendas (U2’s “Pride (In the name of Love), Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power" and Bob Dylan’s “A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall” to name a few). The wrong song, however, will inspire palms to join forces with faces and spend an eternity in wherever it is forgotten maxi-singles go to die.
Well, we lobbed a little bit of Critics' Pick love in the direction of tonight's Music City Roots at Loveless, as well as the Wine, Women and Song Planned Parenthood benefit at The Rutledge — not to mention Jewly's interview with Gretchen Peters, who will play the Rutledge event. But we haven't gotten the chance to shine some light on tonight's show at Betty's yet, so let's take care of that.
Now, ever since Leslie Keffer left Betty's, the West Side dive hasn't been the hotbed of noise and experimental music that it once was. But local booker of shows Chris Davis is known for putting together some pretty substantial folk, psychedelic and experimental bills, and the shindig he's scheduled for tonight at Betty's appears to be no exception. Far-out, folk-rooted guitar guru William Tyler needs little introduction here in Nashville. Beautifully melodic and ramshackle folk outfit The Cherry Blossoms are a bit lesser known, perhaps — although this guy posted a bunch of their tracks on his YouTube channel, if you'd like to do some exploring. And then there's Colorado's psychedelic folkstress Josephine Foster, who manages to meld a wonderfully haunting amalgam from the traditional American styles of folk, blues and rock. Foster is featured on the September cover of Wire Magazine, and you can hear three of her new tunes at Wire's website. Above you can hear one of Foster's older tunes, "All I Wanted Was the Moon," which is appropriately accompanied by footage from Georges Méliès' film Le Voyage dans la Lune.
So. Three acts, each known for its unique, avant-garde take on American folk music, and each blessed with the gift of transfixing melody. There's a Facebook event page, if that's what you're into. Starts at 9 p.m., cover is $5-7.
Retro-rocking locals The Lonely H are at risk of succumbing to Chronic Album Dormancy, or CAD. Chronic Album Dormancy is, of course, "a widespread epidemic contained solely within [The Lonely H]." And if you don't give blue-eyed Nordic prince Mark Fredson and his gang of long-locked rock 'n' rollers some money to record their next album, they might be lost to CAD forever. Drummer Ben Eyestone seems to be the most far-gone.
Right, so you know where this is going: The Lonely H wants to release their already-in-the-can fourth record, but before they can do that, they need to raise the scratch to pay some recording debts, take care of their album artwork and handle both physical and digital distribution. They've launched a Kickstarter campaign — for which they've set a goal of $4,000 — and their deadline is Oct. 7. As per usual with KS campaigns, donations will land you thank-you prizes direct from the band — in this case, rewards run from a postcard to hot pants to a private party and everything in between. Hey, how much do you think it would take to get them to change their name? Not that there's anything wrong with "The Lonely H," per se ... I'm just tired of accidentally saying "The Local H" when I'm talking about them. Anyway, for proof that the boys have already done some serious work on the album — which, by the way, will feature cameos and contributions from locals including Caitlin Rose, Melissa Mathes, Margo Price, Alex Caress, John Painter, Jefferson Crow and The Rolling Stones' saxophonist Bobby Keys — have a look at the video after the jump.
When Nashville-based music festival SoundLand announced this year's date (Oct. 6) and initial lineup (My Morning Jacket, Divine Fits, Young the Giant, The Weeks, PUJOL, JD McPherson and more), we mentioned that there might me more info coming down the line regarding SoundLand's 2012 venue. SoundLand did indeed announce today that their home, The Lawn at Riverfront Park, "is a new, open green space that has never before been used for a music festival."
Now, as longtime locals may well recall, the 11-acre city-owned space now being called The Lawn at Riverfront Park was once home to a thermal transfer plant that burned to the ground in May of 2002. As reported by our sister paper City Paper back in May, The Lawn was used by the Nashville Symphony for this year's Fourth of July celebration. In that CP story, Andrea Arnold of the Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau was quoted as saying that moving the stage to The Lawn allowed them to "add about 20,000 more people in that area." While SoundLand notes that The Lawn space "has never before been used for a music festival," it doesn't look like they'll be the first. Zac Brown's Southern Ground Music and Food Festival (which we announced here) will take place at The Lawn Sept. 21 and 22. Also, Skrillex and Pretty Lights' With Your Friends Fest on Oct. 26 and 27 will take place at the riverfront, but will it technically be at The Lawn? My money's on yes, but I've put in an email to the fest's organizers to see if we can confirm that.
Anyhow, as noted, SoundLand has shared several photos of The Lawn. Above you can see a mock-up of what the 'Land stage is planned to look like, and after the jump you can peep some more pics of The Lawn.
Nashville Cream: For those who don’t know the story, how was it that you came to donate money to Planned Parenthood in Sarah Palin’s name?
Gretchen Peters: It was the night Sarah Palin debated Joe Biden. I got a call late that night from my booking agent, and she said, “Did you see what’s happened?” And I had no idea what she was talking about, but apparently Sarah Palin walked out on the podium to my song, to “Independence Day,” as her rallying cry. It wasn’t the first use of the song, obviously — or misuse I should say — by the Republican party or the right wing or any political faction for that matter. Although I’d never heard of anybody on the other side doing that. But it was, I guess, the straw that broke the camel’s back for me. I started to realize that probably there were a lot of people that thought that that really was a song about politics or patriotism or something like that, and that really got under my skin, because, of course, that’s not what it’s about.
The closest known
To a brother bigger
Than I told me of
A heap of broken
Glass whose maker
Named, "a mountain."
The math behind this
Equals its name plus
A method of breaking,
Falling under the toil,
In relation to
Of materials used.
* Looks like the locals are getting their Trot on in full force today. The Rock Island, Illinois-based in-studio performance series Daytrotter just posted sessions from Natural Child (who slayed at our anniversary party on Saturday night), jokester folk duo Birdcloud and Jonny Fritz and the In-Laws (Fritz, of course, having recently abandoned his "Corndawg" moniker). Tracks include Cream faves "Shut Up," "Fuck You Cop" and "B$G P$MP$N," not necessarily in that order.
* And finally, you may have seen feel-good indie outfit Kopecky Family Band play their tune "Heartbeat," but now you can get it in MP3 form courtesy of Rolling Stone. Kelsey Kopecky says to RS, "'Heartbeat' is a fun and lighthearted love song that was born on the out of tune piano in my living room. I hope it makes you smile." Fine. But hey, I don't think those kids are actually related, despite their similarly hip haircuts.
Here’s your chance to (maybe) own a piece of unknown rock ’n’ roll history. In addition to a straight stretch of transcontinental interstate, there are a lot of dark, winding roads between Williamson and Putnam Counties. It’s almost frightening to imagine what kind of journey a garishly upholstered piece of furniture has to make in order to go from sitting in rocker Jack White’s Franklin crib to ending up in, of all places, Cookeville, Tenn. But according to an active, anonymous Cookeville Craigslist poster, that’s exactly what the love seat you see pictured above did. He/she says this antique couch was once White’s, is currently his/hers and could now — goose down cushions and all — be yours for a one-time payment of $450. See the poster’s full proposition after the jump.
Nashville Cream: What year did you start playing shows around town? Was it 2010?
Rayland Baxter: Yeah. The summer of 2010 was like my first gig at 3rd & Lindsley. I played with Natalie Prass, I think, and Gabe Kelley. That was when it began.
There was a man named Jimmie Rodgers once.
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