Featured Business: Vertical House Records September 09 2018, 0 Comments

For over a decade, Vertical House Records has not only been the go-to record store in Huntsville, but they have also hosted many one-of-a-kind in-store performances and events. Husband and wife team Andy and Ashley Vaughn began this journey in a tiny space in 2007. After several expansions, Vertical House has grown into one of the largest record stores in the entire Southeast... and they aren't finished yet. Plans to expand yet again are in the works and that means an even bigger space, more inventory for you crate diggers, bigger acts for live music fans and more. We recently caught up with Andy and Ashley to ask a few questions. 

HSVAF: So, for those who don’t already know, could you please tell us a little bit about Vertical House Records?

VH: Vertical House Records is an independent record store (established in 2007) that has over 20,000 LPs! We also have 45s, cassettes, stereo equipment, zines, and loads of fun stuff! We love showcasing live music, and have a wonderful time hosting shows!

HSVAF: We hear you have plans to expand again for a third(?) time? What will this expansion bring and when can we expect to be able to shop in the new store?

VH: haha it's actually the 4th or 5th...we moved around a bit upstairs in the Flying Monkey before moving out to the railroad rooms (located south of the main building). We hope the larger space will give us more room for records (duh) but also the option to host larger bands, trivia nights, yoga classes, bottle shares, potlucks, dance parties, movie nights, etc! More space, more fun right?! While we don't have any dates to announce yet, you can bet there will be a party to celebrate!

HSVAF: You two have been a staple at the Lowe Mill for many years. What are a couple of your favorite Lowe Mill / VH memories?

VH: It all started with Crash Boom Bang for us, so definitely that theater troupe and all the fun chaos that came along with it (whew boy). Getting to host shows for some of our favorite bands (Nobunny, Ty Segall, Jeff the Brotherhood, Greg Cartwright, Shannon and the Clams, Peach Kelli Pop, Wreckless Eric, Tenement, Nots, Jacuzzi Boys, and so many other awesome folks) and watching them find some of their white whale albums - that's always a treat! It's been amazing to witness the entire community that surrounds this place grow and continue to offer such an outpour of love and support! 

HSVAF: In-store performances. Over the years VH has brought in many great bands, both local and from all over the country. Is there anything on the horizon you guys are excited about?

VH: It's a bummer that we don't have a ton of space right now to put on a show, so we've taken a tiny when we do get that new space it'll be AWESOME getting to host some larger shows. We have a few folks on the radar we are hoping to reach out to, but can't announce anything for certain at this point.

HSVAF: If you could have anyone play at the store, who would it be?

VH: Ashley - lol anyone?! Radiohead! Andy - King Tuff, The Bananas, or The Mummies would be awesome!

HSVAF: The vinyl craze. VH has been in business long enough to have witnessed the up-rise of vinyl. How has this impacted you? 

VH: The resurgence has helped us grow organically, as needed, and offer Huntsville music and the camaraderie that comes about shopping in a brick and morter shop. It's exciting seeing the younger generation have something in common with previous generations. Vinyl never really disappeared, so it's nice that the format and technology are still so readily available. 

HSVAF: In your opinion, why did vinyl get so popular again?

VH: It's an excellent format and probably one of the truest ways to "experience" the music, especially if recorded analog. I think as ipods and MP3 players got more popular, folks missed the nostalgia of being able to hold an album, the artwork, and really touch the music. While it's certainly convenient being able to have thousands of albums at your fingertips digitally, there's really nothing like the analog sound.


HSVAF: What are both the pros and cons to the industry changing?

VH: The hardest thing is convincing someone to buy physical media over digital music and to support local businesses over online retailers. We can do special orders and can usually beat online prices!

Featured Artist: Amber Brookman September 09 2018, 0 Comments

Amber Brookman worked as a full time artist in San Francisco, California for over ten years before her partner, now husband, was recruited to work for the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in Huntsville, AL. The two married and relocated in 2008. Since her move Ms Brookman has continued to show her work in various galleries in Palo Alto, CA., Boston, MA., and Seattle, WA., to name a few. In San Francisco, Brookman had established a reputation for large-scale abstract art that lends itself well to modern public and private spaces. She has exhibited and sold work internationally, and is represented in many private, corporate and hospitality collections and spaces around the world.


In recent years Geometric Abstraction has dominated her artistic style with her underlying interests in the sciences providing content and inspiration. Her mediums often include oils and alkyd resins, encaustic, as well as collage and printmaking. 


Visit to view more works.




HSVAF: Was there a defining moment that you decided to be a full-time artist? If so, when was it and what prompted it? 


AB: Instead of one defining moment it was more like a series of fortunate events. I was working at a frame shop in San Francisco where our clients were the majority of galleries and art consultants in the area. After years of establishing great working relationships, the company moved to a larger space and opened a gallery on site. I was one of the first artists to show work there, from that point on I started selling work through art consultants and a few galleries. After a few more years of consistent sales one of my interior design clients offered me a job helping her to place art in high end homes and hotels around the world. The catch to working for her was that I was to be an independent contractor and only work when there was a project. This allowed me to ease my way into being a full-time artist, as well as gave me the business experience of working for myself. That was in 1999, and I have not had a full-time job since. Work for the interior designer dried up after a few years and I was then a full-time artist. At times I have taken on small projects or have taught Pilates part time.  


HSVAF: Where can people view your art? 


AB: Currently people can see a few pieces from my “synapse series” at Museum Store at the Huntsville Museum of Art, or all my work on line at I also still have work at galleries in  Palo Alto, CA, and ARTERRA, in Bellevue, WA.


HSVAF: How/where do you typically draw inspiration?  

AB: I typically draw inspiration from what I read. I have always been interested in big questions, the human condition, the nature of consciousness and the scientific quest for a unified theory. Much of what I read fuels my work as I try to grasp the big picture often sacrificing the details. I have no idea, nor do I really care, if the work conveys what I have been reading about. I see my work as a reaction to the world around me and hope that my visual reaction resonates with others. The perceived message may be different for every single person. But isn’t that the nature of reality? We view everything through the lens of our own experiences thus reality is personal, as is the way we view a piece of art.  


HSVAF: Do you have any advice for up and coming artists? 


AB: I think many artists, who want to make a living selling their work, don’t think about networking with art consultants and/or interior designers. Sure, we would all love to be given solo shows in a pristine well-known gallery or better yet, museum, and there is huge value in making that your goal. It is often preferred to having your work scrutinized by how it will look with a sofa, but the reality is that very few people can or do buy art for the purpose of art and not for decoration. I paint what I want to paint and have fallen into a niche that is not where I initially wanted to be, but it has sold a lot of work for me, and work that I love to make. So my advice, I suppose, is to have an open mind about where and how you get your work out there. Many people are selling on line now, through Instagram even. There are many more resources to find out there other than that elusive gallery show. And, be as prolific as you can.   


HSVAF: What mediums do you work with?


AB: I mainly work in thin layers of oils and use a lot of galkyd and marble dust, but have also done Encaustic work, Watercolors, Acrylics and am about to start working on some large scale sculptural projects with metal gabion cages and stone. 


HSVAF: How would you describe your subject matter?    


AB: I would describe my genreas Geometric Abstraction. I use geometric forms to convey feelings and try to evoke thought. Geometry is about as pure and universal a language as we have. Our brains are wired for recognition and response to pattern. My goal, along with artists such as, af Klint, Malevich, Rothko, Riley, Mondrian, Kandinsky, Klee (just to name a few artists I love) is to evoke emotion and thought through use of pattern, geometry and color. Abstract thoughts through abstract imagery. 


HSVAF: Is there something you are currently working on, or are excited about starting that you can tell us about?  


AB: I am excited about two different projects/series’ right now. Many years ago, I designed some large scale architectural sculptures. I tried many times for grants and projects to be able to build them but never was able to. My husband and I now have some land where I can build to my heart’s content, so I am sourcing materials and working on final designs to start building some of those projects within the next year. I would love to eventually do some large scale public works. While I am working on that, I have several series of paintings in the works as well. One which I am excited about utilizes images that produce the McCollough effect covered by images of pathways or openings. (The McCollugh effect is an optical illusion where a semi-permanent change to one’s vision is induced by focusing on a specific image for a specific amount of time.) I see it as a metaphor for today’s experience with media, what we look at/watch has a lasting effect on our perception of reality and truth. The superimposed paths and or openings symbolize this current socio-political path and where we will go from here. “the narrowing path” 60” x 60” oil and alkyd on canvas ©2017 is the first in that series.    



HSVAF: Are you involved in any upcoming shows or events? Where and when? 


AB: I took a break recently from my art to work on some other things and have been in planning stages. So, I have nothing on the books coming up as far as physical shows. When I do, the best way to find out is to follow me on social media at

Help us help you! October 09 2015, 1 Comment

Are you a musician? If so, we want to help you. On top of being one of the most unique indie labels on the globe, we are also a full scale marketing firm, press company and visual studio. Our team consists of artists, audio engineers, cinematographers, web developers and more. Whether it's promo, merch or a killer music video, the Waxo's have you covered! We operate on a personal level and the sky is the limit. No big label bullshit. No smoke and mirrors. Just a group of professionals who love art and music.

To learn more, or submit your music for a chance to be pressed on vinyl for FREE, contact us at!

Getting Quichey With Brett Rosenberg June 25 2015, 0 Comments

By DeadWeatherDenver

His own website likens Quichenight to 'lo-fi, high-brow easy-listening music for nerds'. Personally I've found it takes me back to the formative years of my childhood- the days of hearing Todd Rundgren's 'hello it's me' coming from my dad's orange Datsun pick up. The days of hearing the theme to 'Welcome Back Kotter' reruns emitting from the t.v. droning on in the background. Popping a Quichenight cassette into your walkman and taking it in, weird things come to mind... perhaps visions of sitting on a Malibu beach circa 1980 and all of a sudden Jack Tripper goes running by, or maybe you're in a vintage kitchen watching one of those clocks with the cat whose tail and eyes that move from side to side. Or maybe you're transported to a different time and space altogether. Who knows. Regardless, I've admired this guys work in PUJOL so much, I thought some of you other Pujol-Pals out there might enjoy learning a bit more about the man behind the guitar- Mr. Brett Rosenberg.

Hey Brett! Thanks so much for agreeing to this Q&A~

Please give us a brief introduction to yourself… Background? Bands you play in? When did you start playing music?

I took organ lessons in 1st grade, but was such a bad sight-reader that my parents and I concluded I wasn't cut out for it. I kept fooling around with it, though. In 3rd grade, I improvised a 90-minute electric chord organ and vocal record into a tape recorder. I still have the tape. It sounds very eastern. Side 2 is comedy. Eventually I became a teenager and of course played guitar and pretended to like heavy metal and learned the history of punk rock, liked some 90s indie rock, started real bands that played shows, etc. Via my friends/heroes The Figgs, I played guitar for Graham Parker on a couple of tours. In 2007, I moved to Nashville for some reason and immediately took 5000 craigslist music gigs and sort of existed in that perpetual local-shows-with a-bunch-of-total-strangers universe. It warped me. It was mostly posi. Now I play in PUJOL with Daniel and funnel my own creative output into Quichenight recordings.

Many folks reading this will be familiar with you from PUJOL… How did you hook up Daniel?

I was living in Battle Tapes, the recording studio where Daniel recorded Nasty, Brutish, and Short and United States of Being. I remember him finishing Angel Baby there, too. Standing in the kitchen, I could hear "SPREAD YOUR WAAAANGS." Very esoteric, catchy, raw, goofy, earnest, distinctly Middle Tennessee rock music. I gave him a Quichenight tape, something I'd started recording in the basement recreationally while people were out of town. He listened to it a lot on tour, and eventually asked me to play guitar.

You guys have been all over the country in the past year or so. What are some of your favorite touring memories to date?

My favorite things about traveling are the places in between places. I like the desert. The Grand Canyon is obviously mind-blowing, but so is the view from a Wal-Mart in Montana. I like hotel showers and deserted lobbies at 4am. Nothing sticks out. It was one big highlight for me. Actually, I really like Deadwood, SD and its depressing, creepy casinos that may have been hospitals at some point. 

Your (primarily) solo effort, Quichenight, has been active and playing around Nashville for a few years now. How did that project come about? What’s behind the name?

Quichenight travels through time because time is imaginary and Quichenight has an imagination, as do we all. So maybe we're in the '60s some nights, but we're still us and we still remember. Some bands do a great job of time traveling but a bad job of remembering how they got there or what they were thinking. I mention those bands because I feel like the tastes and process are at times identical. Anyway, we just go back to get the music. We live and write and assemble here, at home.

Quichenight is full of things from other locations, but it stays home. Quichenight admits staying home is a choice, which is why Quichenight feels so good when you stay home.

With four Quichenight album releases under your belt- all available via limited edition cassette- what was your primary decision behind selecting that medium?

It's cheap, but not totally arbitrary beyond that. We recorded all those albums on 4-track cassette. I listen to tapes. Some of my best times listening to music were listening to a tape. The hardest part is keeping the players working, but there are always more to buy. Trick is to keep 3 or 4 around at all times so if one breaks, you're not stuck with just mp3s, CDs, and vinyl. It's certainly choosing your audience, not the other way around. That said, I'm doing vinyl soon because it is a more proper, reliable, permanent format. A couple people have approached me, but it would be 2017 at the latest. I've been making tapes since I was 4. It's how I think about recorded music.

What is your preferred equipment set up?

I'll play anything, even the new Marshall JCM 50000 with 50,000 knobs and the Snapple Bluetooth attenuator. 

Official Five WaxO's ‘Gotta Know’ Questions?

1) First vinyl memory?

Wings, London Town, watching my mom "fix a skip" at the beginning of "Cuff Link." 1984. You can do this at home by applying downward pressure to the needle, pushing it horizontally in the opposite direction the scratch is taking it.

2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

Gato Barbieri, Chapter One: Latin America

3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

Rupert Holmes, Partners in Crime

4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

I don't listen to enough new music to answer that question adequately and also time isn't real.

5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

see above

An early stream of Quichenight's NEW ALBUM 'The Minor Sea' is available at The Tusk. Due out June 30th via Bartertown Co-Op, it's sure to provide some super solid sounds for those sultry summer nights.

Exciting New Album News! Week of January 26, 2015 January 28 2015, 0 Comments

by DeadWeatherDenver

This past weekend got wind of a new BP Fallon live in Texas LP due out February 17th and available for pre-order now.

BP Fallon 'Live in Texas' Front Cover, courtesy of

Featuring Aaron Lee Tasjan (whose new album 'In the Blazes' is due out any time now) on acoustic guitar and backing vocals, Danny B Harvey and Joe King Carrasco on electric guitar and backing vocals, it's pretty much guaranteed to be amazing. Recorded live at ABGB in Austin, TX, the session spans the gamut of Bandits tunes new and old and a sizzling rendition of a band-favorite 'Van and Gloria'.  Of the upcoming release BP Fallon says, “I didn’t know it was being recorded. That’s maybe why it has such a great vibe”. By Vibrosonic Records in association with San Antonio label Saustex Records 'BP Fallon Live in Texas' is limited to 700 CD, will also be available on iTunes.

Monday I quite happily came across the update that the New England/ UK-based band we all love so much- Low Cut Connie- has a new album coming out April 21st!

Low Cut Connie 'Hi Honey' Front Cover, courtesy of

Also available for pre-order now, 'Hi Honey'- the much anticipated follow up to their sophomore LP 'Call Me Sylvia'- holds all the promise of what you've come to love from these boys- FUN FUN FUN. Sure to put a 'pep in your step', the grooves Adam Weiner and Dan Finnemore (backed by super solid band James Everhart and Will Donnelly) are laying down will have you out of your seat and bebopping along in no time. Super excited for this one! Released by Contender Records, there are 100 limited edition vinyl so get one while you can. Bundles, regular black vinyl and CD also available.

And just today got word of new Pokey LaFarge!

Pokey LaFarge 'Something in the Water' Front Cover, courtesy of

'Something in the Water' is slated to debut April 7th via Rounder Records. The 12-track LP is produced by Jimmy Sutton and will be the band's first from their new label. Considered a primarily 'roots music' record label, Rounder maintains an extensive recorded history of over 3,000 influential roots artists- in other words, a perfect fit for the Pokey LaFarge sound! Also available for pre-order now. If you aren't familiar with Pokey and his multi-faceted band, I highly encourage you to acquaint yourself.

Keeping it Real- A.L.T., The Rocking Folk Singer November 19 2014, 1 Comment

By DeadWeatherDenver
Photo Courtesy of Curtis Wayne Millard

Underrated and somewhat underappreciated, Aaron Lee Tasjan (A.L.T. for short) has spent the last decade making a career on his own terms. Incorporating humorous, half-true stories into his unique blend of folk rock, Aaron Lee lays it all on the line, weaving artful tales into wonderfully melodic tunes.

A.L.T. primarily grew up in New Albany, Ohio. In his middle school years, he reportedly started a dog walking business to fund his first guitar/lessons purchase which proved to be a fruitful venture for by age 16 he was named a recipient of the Outstanding Guitarist Award in The Essentially Ellington Competition at Lincoln Center. Forgoing the offer of a music scholarship, he moved to New York straight out of high school. He gained recognition playing with the Semi-Precious Weapons and went on to perform with (among others) the NY Dolls, Drivin’ & Cryin’ and The Madison Square Gardeners. 

In 2009 Aaron Lee had the opportunity to record with BP Fallon at Third Man Records. He later helped to produce ‘Still Legal’ for BP Fallon & The Bandits

According to Fallon, "Aaron Lee Tasjan is a one-off. His guitar-playing, both electric and acoustic, is spectacular. His own songwriting is perceptive and enormously soulful, with melodies that seduce you and words that say hello to your heart. I love doing what we call 'tuneage' with him ~ 'I Believe In Elvis Presley' was the very first song we wrote together. To have Aaron as a member of BP Fallon & The Bandits and doing additional projects with him too is a pleasure and a joy. There are many, many talented people on this battered but still magic planet and Aaron is one of them, a Main Man. But more importantly, he's a great person, a man so warm you could make toast from his aura. I'm blessed to have him as my friend and musical collaborator".


A.L.T. is a modern day poet. In 2013 he was recognized by ASCAP as a Next Generation Songwriter. He doesn’t let any of this go to his head though- for Aaron, it’s all about the music.

Fresh on the heels of his utterly addicting March 2014 EP release, Crooked River Burning (Rockwood Music Hall Recordings), Aaron can currently be found playing as many shows as possible while also working on his upcoming album, ‘In The Blazes’. I managed to catch up with him in between doing what he does best and he was oh so kind to field my numerous inquiries.

Aaron Lee Tasjan- A.L.T.- you are certainly well known among fellow musicians in the ‘inner circle’. For those who may not yet be familiar, you have described your sound as “one part true Hollywood stories, one part fuzz pedal, one part Arlo Guthrie.” A far cry from some of your previous band experience, how did you evolve from the garage glam of Semi-Precious Weapons to the indie folk rockster of present day?

  Photo Courtesy of Rick Edwards

It's funny...people ask me that question often...the truth is I was making folk rock music in my basement in Ohio when I was 16 years old...If you look up a band called Autumn Under Echoes on Spotify etc, you will find an EP (The Smile & Nod EP) I made in 2005 before SPW ever started...those songs were the real me...some still are...Semi Precious Weapons was more or less me playing a role...I was leaning on my weak side to be in that band...I'm great at lyrics and flat picking and saying funny sh*t on stage...I did write those songs with Justin and I'm proud of them...but the truth is, Justin and I both loved Lucinda Williams way more than any of the bands we were citing as influences during my time in SPW. I did indeed love Nirvana but even so, it was their Unplugged album that really knocked me out the most...I did love some rock'n'roll pre SPW...particularly Oasis...I knew all of their songs but Wonderwall was my Dad even started calling me Wonderwall because I played it in our house over and over and over when I was about 13.  While in High School, my friend's Dad played me Alice's Restaurant Massacre...I thought...this is what I should do...make up songs that are funny but not a joke and stand on their own as great songs and stuff....When I was 18, I discovered Kevn Kinney's solo records and Wilco at the same changed everything for me...I had a John Prine tape my friend had given me too...Prime Prine. I learned Paradise and Please Don't Bury Me and started playing them at my gigs...I tried to sing Alice's Restaurant a few times too but could never remember it all.

Forgoing a full ride scholarship to Berklee College of Music, you had a fairly true Rock Star intro into the music world, basically kicking off your career by touring with one of your own personal musical heroes, Kevin Kinney. What did that experience teach you and how did it make you a better musician? Did it change your outlook on the possibilities of supporting yourself as an artist? Do you think the musical education you’ve received on the road is comparable to one you may have been taught in a public education setting? 

I'm as well educated as any college level dropout in America...and being around Kevn Kinney is definitely part of the education I've received and am still receiving....but I also went to a great high school in New Albany, Ohio. I had a few teachers there who didn't teach me about the Civil War or how to use a bunsen burner...they taught me HOW to learn and to love learning...The Berklee thing wasn't a long term thing for me because I wasn't in the mind set to be there...I wanted a Kerouac adventure...I knew I wanted to write songs about a life I wasn't living and I NEEDED to be living it and it wasn't gonna happen for me while I was throwing up in a dorm room at Northeastern University while my poor girlfriend held my hair back....I needed to break my own heart over and over...Kevn showed me how to do it and how to survive it...and it was nothing he said to me in conversation...he showed me...he showed be by calling me out on my bullsh*t...on my lies and my untrue songs that were fake...he made me get real with myself and I will never forget him and every day I think of him and am grateful he is my best friend and mentor...Kevn is a dirty, rock'n'roll angel from hell sent to bring heaven to earth...there will never be anyone like him and no one can touch him on songs except the greats like Dylan, Waits etc.

I personally discovered you via your association with BP Fallon. You’ve also played with a handful of renowned bands- The NY Dolls, Drivin’ & Cryin’ to name a few- yet you remain very humble and appreciative of your opportunities. How do you maintain such a down-to-earth outlook when you’re working with and surrounded by such heavy hitters?

First off, I love BP Fallon...the man is truly brilliant...I don't need to stay down to earth because I know who I am and I know where I am...I have a strong sense of these things and of where I'd like to go...there's no time to think I'm awesome or special or any of that stuff...I have a job to do...and my job is to help people and keep my soul clean...I can do that with songs and singing every night...I have been down far enough to know what it's like to not have a place to call home and I have been abandoned and misunderstood and been considered irrelevant and unqualified blah blah blah...I have been abused and I have been an abuser and I can sing all that stuff from my guts because it's my truth...I just want to be a light and reflect and levitate and stuff...I will never do that if I think for one second that I'm some great guy or some significant talent...I'm a guy with a guitar and my skin hangs on me inside out for everyone to see what's in my heart...and it's all because I believe in myself and I believe in others.

Along those same lines, what have been some of your best musical moments to date?

Playing Straight To Hell with John Paul Jones in Mexico...playing guitar with Todd Snider at a country club in Pennsylvania...singing anything at all with Elizabeth Cook...having a song I co-wrote produced by Jack White...putting out Crooked River Burning...getting invited to sing at The Kennedy Center...singing for the guys at Street Roots before they went out to sell their papers...and crying sometimes because I look over on stage and Kevn Kinney is singing a song and I'm in the f*cking band!

Let’s talk about your EP that was released in March 2014, Crooked River Burning… It’s my understanding that you had some rules when assembling this project- The first being that every song could only have three chords, the second that only one song out of however many you recorded for the EP could have a bridge. Did that hinder or help your song selection process when putting that album together? Do you normally impose confines like that on yourself?

It's funny...whoever put that on Wikipedia about those rules was confused...I was actually discussing another EP I had just made with the Madison Square Gardeners that's still unreleased in that interview...all the songs on Crooked River Burning were the most real, honest things I had ever written in my whole life...and I was absolutely terrified of people hearing them...I thought they were fine songs but I was so scared of what people would think of me which is bullsh*t because I want to be as good at songs as Kevn Kinney or Todd Snider or Elizabeth Cook or Jason Isbell...and those people bare their whole soul to the world and they are more brave than any Senator or Congressman or Congresswoman we have in this country...and if I'm going to sit here and tell you that I aspire to do that, I have to be fearless and relentlessly honest in my songs...great art should be either loved or hated...BP Fallon said that...he also said the most important part of art is finishing and he's damn right about both of those things.

I am so endeared to your lyrical stylings and I love that you maintain humor and irony above all else. I read that you began performing because that’s how you’d ‘decided you wanted to talk to people’. Do you find that with the direction you’ve taken in your solo work people are more responsive to your message?

Well, it's the first time in my life that I've ever had anything to say...because I've started to live as my true self...and I don't care what people think of my relationships I've had or the way I live because I'm out there doing it and triumphing with it...but yes, people give me hugs after shows or tell me how happy it made them and thank me for saying what I believe but the truth is I am the one thanking them because they are the heroes...I can string words together and point at stuff and say, "look at how beautiful this is!" or "look at how unfair and f*cked up this is..." but at the end of the day, the people living in this country, real, American people who aren't rich and are trying to figure out how to make themselves and their families happy inspire me to want to talk to them...because I am one of them and I relate to their struggles and their victories the same way they relate to mine...we're here for each other and no one can take it away from us and they can't even understand what it's like anyway.


When you are in the midst of songwriting, what generally tends to inspire you?

I write songs everyday...every single day i write a song...most of them no one will ever hear...the good ones sneak up on me and sometimes i have no idea until i sing them for my friends Clay or Curtis or something...but also Leonard Cohen said, "Inspiration is for the amateurs. The rest of us just show up and get to work." I like that and he knows more about songs than anybody.

What’s your preferred equipment set up?

I love my Loar LH-200 acoustic guitars...they are all I play at my solo shows...I love ES 335s and small Fender amps...I love my Diamond J-Drive pedal and I love Vox amps too...the Beatles played those things...will anyone be as good as the Beatles? hell no...but we can play on amps that looked like theirs and pretend and feel cool till our 45 minutes is up.

You recently moved from New York, where gentrification has out priced artist communities, to Nashville, a city that is rapidly expanding due to a wide array of folks relocating there. An inevitable fall out of growth, this trend is now creating the same affect in the artist communities of Nashville and Austin. Overall do you feel this helps to foster and create art? Or do you find it a hindrance to opportunity and creative growth?

Look, great art is made by smart, beautiful (in their soul) people who feel very deeply and love very doesn't matter where it happens...just because you show up in Nashville or Austin or NYC or where ever doesn't mean you're any good...if you do go, get out of your house and see who is playing in town...challenge yourself to become a positive, uplifting part of whatever community you're in...that is what feeds and creates a strong artistic Seattle in the 90s or Athens in the 80s, aspiring artists will go where great art is happening to try and be a part of the's a human response to need and needing a feeling of fulfillment...eventually, everything will be gentrified (for lack of a better term) but that is good...we need to learn how to live together and try to understand each other...we need to reach across boundaries of race, social class, sex and sexual orientation and let our brothers and sisters know that we stand behind them...that is progress and no elected official will ever give that to us on a silver platter...we must strive to be more intelligent, well educated and have faith...not Jesus faith...but real faith...we need to start believing in things we can not see with the naked eye again.

You’ve got a new album in the works, ‘In the Blazes’- What can you share with us about this project?

In The Blazes is my debut full length album...the title is from a song of the same name by JP Olsen and the album is dedicated to him because he is one of the greatest living songwriters in America and literally nobody knows will be produced by Eli Thompson who made the record Ode To Sunshine by Delta's one of my favorite albums of all time and I'm so lucky to be working with him and other musicians on it like Dan Bailey or David Vandervelde or Joel Graves or whoever else comes in on it with us....the songs are greatest I have written in my whole life and I couldn't be more excited for people to hear what we're doing on this thing...I hope it will inspire new songs and make people happy and fill them with hope and understanding...I also hope it will help them make babies throw bad ass parties...Touchdown.

It’s my understanding you’re a big Seinfeld fan… so, favorite episode?

My favorite Seinfeld episode is The Chinese Woman...I love it because it makes such an interesting point about our expectations of and reactions to our assumptions as well as just how far people will sometimes take something about themselves that suggests something that isn't really true about's totally genius and as always, absolutely hilarious...I have a tremendous amount of respect for what Jerry Seinfeld has done and created...but my favorite comedian of all time is and forever will be Mtich Hedberg...sorry Jerry! Mitch has even had a pretty big influence on my lyrics and storytelling style.

The Official Five Wax O’s Gotta Know Questions

1) First vinyl memory?

First Vinyl memory: buying Bug by Dinosaur Jr off of ebay and playing it in my old apartment in German Village Ohio...the room was all old wood and my room mate had a kick ass stereo and it sounded like heaven to me.

2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

    Album I regularly spin: I always go back to Deluxe by Harmonia...I don't understand any of the words because they are in German but luckily it's mostly instrumental and it makes me so happy to hear it. They are the Beatles of Kraut Rock.

    3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

      Last album I bought: Willis Alan Ramsey by Willis Alan's the best country folk rock I've ever heard...but I have an eye on Commitment by Bobby Darin if I can ever find one that doesn't cost more than $100...I have a feeling that one may rival it.

      4) What was your favorite album or new artist from this past year?

        Favorite album this past year: I HAVE to give it John Moreland for In The Throes. John is my friend but even if he wasn't he still wins because John's soul is as pure as the driven snow and you hear it on that record. I just love it.

        5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of over this coming year?

          What artists am I looking forward to more from: Can't wait for Moreland's new one...I love Brian Wright's stuff...I think Sadler Vaden is writing good songs...Shovels and Rope keep knocking me out...Nikki Lane is a force to be reckoned with and I think she will keep doing great things...Joe Fletcher is great...Courtney Jaye sent me some songs the other day that were beautiful as only she can write and sing...I look forward to the new Father John Misty album because that dude is f*cking on point and so funny and his give a damn is so broke you couldn't fix it with all the tools in Ace's hardware. Amen to that.

          ~ ALT

          Thanks so much to Aaron Lee Tasjan for participating in this Q&A! A.L.T is currently working on his full-length album ‘In the Blazes’, which will be out early 2015 and is available for pre-order at Indiegogo. He’s got some amazing packages available in exchange for your support, so be sure to check them (and the album!) out.

          Coming up in January Aaron Lee Tasjan will be participating in a short tour jaunt along with Caleb Caudle and John Moreland. Don't miss these guys when they hit your town!

          January 7, 2015- 5 Spot, Nashville TN

          January 8, 2015- White Water Tavern, Little Rock AK

          January 10, 2015- Strangebrew Loungeside, Austin TX

          January 11, 2015- Natachee’s, Houston TX

          January 12, 2015- Thirsty Hippo, Hattiesburg MS

          January 13, 2015- Callaghan’s, Mobile AL

          January 14, 2015- New World Brewery, Tampa FL

          January 15, 2015- Will’s Pub, Orlando FL

          January 16 & 17, 2015- 30A Songwriter’s Fest- Santa Rosa Beach FL

          January 17, 2015- Smith’s Olde Bar, Atlanta GA

          January 18, 2015 Standard Deluxe Small House, Waverly AL

          January 19, 2015- Caledonia Lounge, Athens GA

          January 20, 2015- The Evening Muse- Charlotte NC

          January 21, 2015- Club 603 House Concert, Baltimore MD

          January 22, 2015- Captain Ale House, Richmond VA

          January 23, 2015- The Garage, Winston/Salem NC

          January 24, 2015- Open Chord Brewery, Knoxville TN

          Wax-O-Holics 'The Backyard Sessions' with Alex Russi from Hillside Stomp August 22 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          I recently had the pleasure to host Alex Russi from Hillside Stomp in our Wax-O-Holics inaugural debut of 'The Backyard Sessions', brought to you from my very own backyard! Be sure to check out this insightful interview, which also features performances of two (as yet) unrecorded tracks, 'Two-Timing' and 'Don't You Know.

          Music from their new album 'Eviction Notice' will be broadcast on KKES FM this Sunday at 6pm CST. Tune in online at or listen live on 102.7 FM if you are in the Kansas City area.

          'Eviction Notice' is currently available for digital download at


          * If you are a musical artist planning to be in the Denver area and are interested in a Backyard Sessions feature, please contact me for more information.

          Update From the Road- The Ghost Wolves August 06 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          We had the great pleasure to witness the power of the Ghost Wolves last night at their first ever show in Denver, CO. They are currently making their way across the front range up to a 'destination gig' in Pinedale, WY this weekend for the PFAC Summer Series.

          Despite the less-than-stellar venue and crowd, Jonny & Carley took to the stage like pros- RAWK, Stomp & Roll Baby! When Carley wasn't ripping out haunting slide riff's on top of her amp, she was rocking out with various members of the crowd, stepping off the stage a few times throughout the show to bring their awesome Wolf Power down to our level. Watching their connected performance I fell even more in love with this little duo from Austin, TX. 

          Had a chance to catch up with this phenomenal two-some after their set and not only did they share the secret of their success with me (green smoothies!), they gave me a little feedback about their summer tour travels. Check out what they had to say in our FIRST video installment of our new Wax-O-Holics series, 'Update From the Road'... with The Ghost Wolves.

          (click photo above to link to video interview)

          If you live in Colorado you still have TWO chances to catch them- tonight (8/6) in Boulder at Madelife and tomorrow (8/7) in Fort Collins at Surf Side 7. If you don't have a chance to see them in person, at least check out their latest LP released back in May, Man Woman Beast, via Plowboy Records. Thirteen well-woven songs, two super-talented individuals, one great album.

          Update From the Road- Lime Cordiale August 04 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          Some of you may remember my SXSW interview with the phenomenal Aussie band Lime Cordiale back in March. Since then I've been fairly 'play-obsessed' with their latest EP, Falling Up the Stairs.

          I recently had the opportunity to touch base with Oli post their U.S. Summer tour and here's what this talented gent had to say.

          Hey guys! Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer a few follow up questions…. The last time we met up at SXSW in Austin, TX you had just completed your second ever overseas show. Since then, you’ve had numerous performances over a good bit of America - what have been some of the more memorable moments for you?

          Yeah it's crazy to think that we've played about 50 USA shows now. We visited so many beautiful cities like Austin, Portland and Seattle... even if it was just for one night sometimes. My brother and I play with different musicians for every tour. We're starting to learn that you can't find a trombone player that's got everything properly going on upstairs. We've had two different L.A based trombone players for these last two USA tours and they both smoke far too much pot, pass out in the back of the car and if you do let them drive, they drive like absolute psychopaths - "You guys totally, literally just need to get used to this... this is L.A driving for you".

          Favorite venue thus far? Best show so far as audience?

          I think we were all kind of overwhelmed when we played at The Crocodile in Seattle. Some of the greatest legends have played there like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Cheap Trick and Yoko Ono. You sit backstage and imagine Kurt Cobain sitting on the same seat, drinking far too much and puking on someone else's lap. Or you sit on the toilet seat and marvel at the fact that Kurt's butt and your butt are kinda touching in a way. The audience in Seattle were energetic and enthusiastic. We ended up staying up all night with people from the show and ended up at a rooftop party overlooking the city... Beeaauutiful.

          You’ve kept us updated of your travels with some very, shall we say, entertaining Instagram photos- would it be fair to say that Louis is the ham of the group? Will he be pursuing an alternate career as a churro vendor?

          It's just easy to catch some good photos with Louis if you're ready and waiting. He does some stupid shit and if you're there with a camera, you can bottle it up forever. The photo of his mangina was just something he did when he was bored at a photoshoot. We didn't plan for him to pull down his pants, it's just something he does when there's nothing else to do. I must say, I've got a wealth of great photos that he won't let me put up. Probably for the best.

          How have you found summer time in the States compares to Australia?

          When it gets too hot, I just need to swim. That can be difficult in some places. Being hot and sweaty in Hollywood isn't the greatest feeling but if you're by the beach...yum yum. We were pretty good at searching out a few swimming holes on the road. Maybe a few of them were sewerage outlets, I dunno. A lot of Americans seem to find their relief with super-sized 7/11 slushies but that just puts you on the road to fatness, doesn't it?

          You guys spent some time in the studio prior to your summer tour. Any releases coming up in near future? Have you had a chance to work on any new music while on the road?

          Yes, new releases coming very soon. We only had 6 weeks back home in between tours and didn't get to finish what we were doing. I'm literally just about to email our producer and ask him when the hell we're coming to see him. We're working on a bunch of potential singles with this mastermind, Jean-Paul Fung. We also recorded a bit of stuff in L.A and I'm also working on some stuff at home. We've been touring, touring, touring and now I want to release, release, release.

          Speaking of songwriting, how do you generally work up songs? Do you each come to the table with your own material or does it kind of evolve between the two of you?

          We don't really have a set way of writing. I know some bands manage to find some sort of formula but for us it's different every time. It's rare for us to write everything together. We tend to come up with ideas by ourselves and then bring them together. I like the songs to be pretty rough when we start to collaborate or else the song can turn out a little too "Louis" or a little too "Oli". A healthy mix of the two is what really creates our sound. Being able to listen to each others suggestions is sometimes hard but definitely necessary.

          What does the rest of this year have in store for Lime Cordiale? Will you be back to America to show the East Coast some love?

          We'll either come back to the U.S.A (with a trip to the east) at the end of 2014 or the start of 2015. We're making a trip to play some shows in New Caledonia, which is an island in the pacific (oh, yeah!) and we'll also give our fellow Aussies some tour love. We need to have a little studio time here but after that, we'll make a plan to come sleep on your couches again.

          If you've not yet had a chance to check out these clever boys from 'down under' get to it! Their upbeat tunes (including horns!!!!) and honest lyrics make for some great summer road-tripping music. Be sure to check out 'Sleeping at Your Door', 'Bullshit Aside' and 'Famous'.

          Wax-O-Holics 'Featured Artist' Spotlight- with Nicholas Gagnon July 16 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          We Wax-O-Holics, a cooperative of artists bound together by the love of music, love to foster & support relationships with other creative, like-minded folks. Some of you may remember back in May we debuted our inaugural ‘Featured Artist’ Nicholas Gagnon and his work on this phenomenal screen print.

          Nicholas' thought-provoking artwork can be seen via many other noted artists and labels. He has generously agreed to participate in the following Q&A with me, expounding a bit on his work, his preferred mediums and what typically strikes his fancy.

          Please take a minute to introduce yourself… Do you prefer Nick or Nicholas? Where are you from? What is your background?

          Hello everybody, I’m Nicholas Gagnon. Friends and family call me Nick, but I go by Nicholas on the internet to try and give myself an air of professionalism and/or more Frenchness. I was born in Boulder, Colorado in ‘89 but I grew up in few different places over the years because we moved around a lot. Broomfield, Arvada, Owasso Oklahoma for short time, Boulder during college, and currently live in Parker. Lots of schools, lots of time to myself spent practicing various artistic endeavors. I’ve always been drawing and doing art ever since I can remember actually. Family likes to remind me how my time in t-ball was spent drawing pictures in the dirt while balls would roll past me. I got pizza after the games anyway. Recently graduated with a BFA in Studio Art from CU in 2012 and mounted the piece of paper in a gaudy frame.

          For our readers who may not already know, what artists/ promotional pieces have you worked with/ created for?

          I am so thankful to work with a number of artists/bands and indie record labels on posters, shirts, cover art, a bust, and even a Kick Starter project. That’s been going on for just about over a year now. Bands include The Capones, Tennessee Jet, White Buffalo Woman, Ferocious Few, Three Cent Queen, Cherry Glazerr, and few I’m not at liberty to say just yet. Big fan of all of them. I’ve also done a bunch of stuff for Jett Plastic Recordings, a Shed House Records logo, and Wax-O-Holics graciously asked me to do their first guest artist screen print design. The Capones first vinyl release on Grimtale was so secret that I wasn’t informed about it until a month before it was announced. Still stunned my cover design has a little reaper on the back corner. We decided to do a small promotional triple-faced Capone bust with their debut CD album limited to 15 pieces. I kept 3 but gave away 2 of them, one to my Grandma who’s my biggest fan and another to master printer Mathias Valdez at Lastleaf Printing who did the first screen print poster for the band. It’s actually quite a strange experience to see people show pictures of physical things I designed on the computer. The first official poster I did was for a Capones show in July of last year. They had photos of it in the background of them playing and I had to show the whole family. Same goes for the all the vinyl art and prints of mine I’ve seen floating around on Facebook. One of the biggest highlights from this past year was being mentioned by Rob Jones on Animal Rummy for a little tear sprite sculpture I made just for him. Rob’s art is what got me into all this.

          You market yourself under Obliquitous Art & Design- how did you arrive at that moniker?

          Well, I used to do custom action figures all throughout high school and college under the name “The Underground Studio”. Since what I do now was mostly 2D design it seemed time for a new name with the fresh start. While doing the usual looking through the dictionary for interesting names I came across “obliquity” which is used to describe everything from moral deviation, to how much the earth is off kilter, to genetic abnormality. It’s a loaded word. The moral deviation part made me think of how some of my earlier drawings had been dealing with some touchy subject matter for what I thought were the right reasons. That mixed moral subjectivity and the effects it can have interests me. I’ve also always seemed to have trouble keeping things straight while drawing. Everything I do is always a little off to the left or right no matter how hard I try. That and the fact I found it amusing that obliquitous is not recognized as correct spelling, even as an adjective, was enough for me to choose it for my design entity.

          Your sculpture pieces are quite impressive- how did you get into making those?

          My brother and I used to kit-bash (taking parts from multiple sources and rearranging them into something new) our action figures when we were probably 10-12 years old. We destroyed a bunch of our 90s Kenner/Hasbro Star Wars figures making them into characters you couldn’t buy in the store. Hot knives, scars, super glue, and paint. We even repackaged them on customized blister cards and sold them online. It was interesting to see Hasbro put out a Jango Fett with flames coming out of his jetpack the same year after we had done it. Later we started collecting higher end 12” military figures made in Hong Kong and did the same thing to those. That’s around the time Band of Brothers was on the History Channel so we did characters from that series pretty early on. For certain characters there weren’t any heads or parts to find close enough to use. Around 2004-2005 I started sculpting and sewing to complete figures. My brother lost interest but I kept the practice up, expanding to all sorts of pop-culture characters. Sculpting was a huge challenge to teach myself. There’s a Korean 12” figure artist named Kojun whose head-sculpts I referenced very closely while doing my own. His work is otherworldly but as they say: practice, practice, practice. Over the years I got to the point where I would make entire characters from scratch, using only ready-made bodies to build on. My BFA exhibition piece was a self-portrait of myself in a miniature setting using all the skills learned since childhood. I don’t sculpt very often anymore but it’s like riding a bike when I do.

          I also really enjoy the work you’ve done based on old photo prints. When you’re adding/ subtracting pieces to the mix, what generally feeds your overall viewpoint?

          Old photos and prints are the most fun to work with, plus the dead aren’t interested in royalties. I always listen to my gut when looking for a picture. If I react to something in it, odds are it will carry through to the finished piece. Sometimes I’ll have a concrete “this is the way it has to look, now go find the parts” idea in my head and other times I’ll let my subconscious take the helm. It can get pretty numbing looking at hundreds of photos, each one with so many possibilities, like staring into infinity. That fatigue instantly goes away once you find “it”. Adding all the pieces in photoshop will bring up another plethora of possibilities but you have to make decisions and trust your gut. It’s a sketching process. Everything always takes at least 2 full edits from what was first called complete, and even then you find something you could have done better.

          From busts to bullet-ridden covers, you’ve had quite a hand in shaping the overall image coming out of The Capones camp. How has the creative process for that played out? Did the band have ideas or were you the primary visionary for their single, posters, merch, etc.?

          It always goes according to the music and how it speaks to me. It gets played constantly while creating. All the imagery for the band was based on the only 2 songs that were available: "Old Tree" and "Nostalgia & Youth". Darren, who does guitar and vocals for The Capones, usually lets me run wild within reason for all the art. Often he’ll plant the seed though. He saw the fan art I was doing on the White Swirl and contacted me about doing some stuff for his band. I think the logo came first. It was a ready-made font I thought looked like pin-striped suits so I tweaked it a bit into what you see now. Everything possible relating to Al Capone was researched to compliment the visual direction from the songs. The connection between blues music, melancholy, lost love, alcohol, valentine’s day cupids, the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre, how Capone was both a villain and a saint at times, his middle name being Gabriel, fallen angels and many other little things all brewed in my brain. It produced a lot of great imagery, mostly violent which reflects the music. Think John William Waterhouse packing heat. One of my favorite concepts was the idea of cupids using tommy guns to blast people with affection. I also saw some significant connections between Al and Lucifer. The album covers for Troubled Me and the singles were inspired by depictions of Lucifer as described in Dante’s Inferno with three faces. A lot of that moral deviance mentioned in why I chose the name Obliquitous is displayed in The Capones artwork.

          You collaborated recently with our own Nick ‘Boat’ Lynch and his band Three Cent Queen on their new singles cover and artwork. Again, what guided the overall vision in that process?

          Boat is probably one of the most fun people to work with. I was honored that he asked me to do the art for that EP release since his abilities as a visual artist are amazing. Back in January we just started to mess around with imagery in a kind of “anything goes” approach. He’d have some pictures to play with and I’d put my personal touch on them. Skeletons, spiders, and a good dose of The Dead Weather sensibility. Since the band name came from a Canadian 3 cent stamp with Queen Elizabeth II on it, I researched her to influence direction. There were probably half a dozen front and back cover possibilities at least in the end, all some of my favorite pieces. Boat chose the one you see on the EP. Can’t wait for you all to see what else we cooked up.

          What do you enjoy most working with smaller Indie labels?

          The down to earth good people who love music, and of course, getting to know what is coming out before anyone else does!

          If doing something just for yourself, what is your preferred medium?

          Digital collage has become something I do for myself to work out my mind when projects are few and far between. There’s a certain flow I experience with it that other mediums don’t do for me.

          You’ve hosted several artwork contests via White Swirl, of which your own contributions have been stunning. What have you enjoyed most about conducting those? Did you have your pieces completed prior or were they inspired by the contest itself?

          Those art shows were all fun to do. I enjoy the sense of community that exists on the Swirl and people’s reactions to seeing what was whipped up. For the first one, there was so much White Stripes inspired imagery pouring out of my mind at the time I had to do something with it. My stuff in that particular show ended up turning into an homage to Rob Jones. I think they each started with just one piece completed for the announcement poster/image and then just working on as many as I could until deadline. There weren’t many participants in the White Stripes one or the Dead Weather one as it got closer to time, so it became even more of a mission to fill up the show as much as possible. Your “House of Bones” is the highlight of that Dead Weather show by the way.

          Nicholas dares to answer The Official Five Wax O’s Gotta Know Questions
          1) First vinyl memory

          I was in college and the music department had a ton of old records sitting in a box for free. I looked through them sparingly and didn’t care at all. Some of the art kids painted on them.

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

          My collection is quite small but I regularly spin “Siamese Dream” by The Smashing Pumpkins.

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

          Been buying a lot of 7”s lately but the last album I added was “Don’t Throw Me Away” by The Mumlers.

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

          2013 was a great year. I’d have to say Lees of Memory is my favorite new artist and my favorite album was Hanni El Khatib’s “Head in the Dirt”.

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

          The Capones, Tennessee Jet, Ferocious Few, White Buffalo Woman, Three Cent Queen, The Ill Itches, Joel Monroe, Smashing Pumpkins, Hanni El Khatib, The Dead Weather, Lees of Memory, Turbo Fruits, Karen O, Bosnian Rainbows, Willy Moon, KT Tunstall, La Luz, Will Sprott, Brother O Brother

          Again, thanks so much to Nicholas for taking the time to participate in this, our first ever 'Featured Artist' Spotlight! We Wax-O-Holics really appreciate all of his great work and look forward to seeing what his creative future has in store.

          Preparing for the Debut of his Sophomore Release, Joel Monroe Reflects on 'Box Elder' June 07 2014, 0 Comments

          By DeadWeatherDenver

          Joel Monroe began his musical career as a young songwriter from Leon, Iowa. Picking up the guitar at age 12, by age 16 he was writing and performing in and/ around Des Moines, Iowa. Making friends with a drum machine he dubbed 'Gene the Machine', he eventually recorded his own release ‘Box Elder’  


          which debuted in March 2013 and features a blistering array of raw, rocking tunes. Singles ‘Black Cat Blues’ b/w ‘Weatherman’ were subsequently released via Grimtale Records as part of the labels' 'raw series'.

          Seriously, this 'kid' is so talented you might be tempted to think he's made a deal with the devil, but I can assure you it's all hard work and dedication on his part. Joel recently took a few minutes out of his day to answer some questions regarding his Box Elder LP release, his Grimtale single and upcoming 2014 plans.

          You began playing music at a fairly young age (12?)- What prompted you to first pick up a guitar? Has your family been supportive of your endeavors?

          I believe it was Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine whom inspired me to start playing guitar.  Rage Against The Machine was probably the first band that I began listening to religiously on a daily basis.  Tom Morello is very creative with the guitar and his playing automatically caught my attention.  My family has been very supportive of my music.  They are always encouraging me to go further.  I'm very thankful for that.

          When did you start writing your own material? Can you describe a bit about your songwriting process?

          I think I wrote my first song at age 16, which was "Black as Hell."  I don't usually write the lyrics and music together. The lyrics come first most of the time, and then I will write the music to the lyrics.  I never plan to write songs either, I just get this feeling telling me that I need to write something down.

          Your first full-length album, Box Elder, was reportedly self-recorded in a fairly small space. How did that come about? What type of equipment did you use?

          Yes, I believe the room was 10x7 ft. It was a spare room at my mother's house which I used to store my equipment.  It did give it a good sound though.  It was my first time recording something that would actually be released, looking back, I can think of a couple things that I could have done differently to make a better production, but what's done is done.  For the equipment, I used a solid state guitar amplifier, a 90's Alesis drum machine (Gene The Machine), both my guitars (Loretta & Black Betty), a few simple dynamic microphones, and a 100 watt 4 channel mixer going into a laptop.  I strayed away from any effects on the laptop, I used only a touch of reverb on my vocals.

          Your Grimtale Records single ‘Black Cat Blues’ b/w ‘Weatherman’ came out on vinyl a few months following your digital LP. Considering you’ve grown up in, primarily, the digital/ MP3 age, what has it been like to progress from a home-recorded, self-released (primarily) digital artist to having a tangible product?

          Well, I never really liked digital.  At school, kids would have Ipods and at home my father would have records, so I had a choice to make.  Obviously I love records way more than anything else, nothing can compare to the feel of vinyl.  I never imagined at all that I would have my music on an actual record, and I can't believe it happened this early in my life.  I love it.

          I was duly impressed with the  b-side, ‘Weatherman’. Can you share the origins behind it?

          Weatherman is a profound political song if you listen closely.  A "pop" inspired song as well.  I think the drum beat was created before the guitar.  I really liked the way it grooved.  Overall it's a song describing what a mess our economy has become and the big problems on Wall Street.  But that's only my description, you can interpret the song however you please.

          You’ve named Bob Dylan and Muddy Waters as some of your musical influences yet your own style is very guitar driven and I gotta say, I see a lot of Jack White in you… that said, who have been other primary influences in your guitar playing and overall sound?

          Lyrically, I'd say Bob Dylan is the main influence.  Guitar-wise, there are so many that have inspired me.  I love Hendrix, he was the first ever to put guitar up front in music, he always had an upfront, "in your face" sound.  As stated earlier, Tom Morello is who first caught my attention, Gary Clark Jr. just recently came about, he's absolutely amazing as well.  The Black Keys and The White Stripes have also been some of my many influences.  The list could go on and on.  I often get compared to Jack White, mostly in looks haha!  I don't know, maybe I'm a long lost brother?  I can see the facial similarities.  People sometimes think I'm trying to rip him off or something, but no, it's a genre of music that I love and live for.  Johnny Depp is supposedly my other twin as well...

          Some might say you are more vocalist than singer due to the spoken nature of some of your lyrics. Was that a conscious decision or just a natural style for you?

          That came natural to me.  I never really realized it until someone pointed it out.  Lately, I've been trying to open up my voice more, we'll see how it turns out later on haha!

          What is your guitar of choice? 

          I honestly don't have a preference.  I don't have the money to try any top-end guitars, so I mostly stick with the cheap ones, and they're getting the job done.  My main guitar (Black Betty) is a Jay Turser 220 with a few modifications. Tell us a bit about your new project, The Crash Pilots Just a little college band for now.  I don't see it going anywhere unless we get a good opportunity.  I really like playing with a band behind me, it gives the songs a great sound than what I'm used to.  It also allows me to solo a little bit more.  Hopefully in the future we will be releasing a 7" with Grimtale Records.

          Any tour dates in the near future? What does 2014 have in store for Joel Monroe?

          I try to get a gig anytime I can, it's hard being underage because a lot of the venues don't allow minors in.  Financially I don't have enough to create a tour, but someday I will do that.  April 7th I'm playing at a variety show in my hometown, Leon.  Other than that, I'm waiting for summer to get here so I can play some small festivals perhaps.  I am also releasing my second album titled, "Soda Splinters."  I can't let you know too much about it yet...

          Thanks so much to Joel for participating in this Q&A! And now Joel answers our Official Top Five WaxO's Gotta Know Questions. 

          1) First vinyl memory?

          Bob Dylan - Blonde on Blonde

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

          Miles Davis - Live-Evil   or   Paul McCartney - Ram

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

          Ty Segall - Twins

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

          Favorite album from last year was Jimi Hendrix - People Hell & Angels

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

          Gary Clark Jr., Jack White, and Bob Dylan.

          Wax-O-Holics Musical Artist Spotlight- Dom Flemons The American Songster May 19 2014, 1 Comment

          by DeadWeatherDenver
          We Wax-O-Holics are so honored to have Dom Flemons as our inaugural EP Wax-O-001 artist. Grammy winning multi-instrumentalist, folklorist, and American Songster Dom Flemons is a self-taught banjoist. He also plays guitar, quills, fife and my personal favorite, bones. His background as an English major opened his observations of how race has been used (and misused) throughout history. In his own unique interpretations, Flemons explores the history of string-band music, often confronting the race behind the genre.


          Dom got his start with fellow Carolina Chocolate Drop bandmates after the 2005 Black Banjo Gathering, which was organized to promote awareness of black string band music throughout the African American community in an effort to create cultural unity. I was intrigued to know that prior to that event Dom communicated with many of the attendees via the internet, which draws an interesting correlation to our group of artists (Wax-O-Holics) who primarily met and work via the internet.
          In anticipation of his upcoming release Dom has so kindly taken the time to answer a few questions about his past and present.

          How did you arrive at the tagline ‘The American Songster’?
          I remember reading about the term “songster” in Paul Oliver’s book “Songsters and Saints” and it stuck with me. When I first started I thought of myself as a folksinger. Starting out in the late 1990’s I realized quickly that even the mention of “folk” would have people screaming for the hills. What I liked about songster was that it was open to the performers that wrote their own material and the one who interpreted songs. I have always enjoyed presenting my version of old songs and making my changes here and there to suit me. Some songs I mimic exactly what I heard on the original recording. Those cases are for the songs that don’t need to be improved and tell a statement on their own.

          What does that phrase mean to you?

          Its important to know that a songster plays music AND sings. I do both and that is my strongest suit. Even though I can get by with one or the other, both parts have always been my focus from the beginning. As for the “American”, I am proud of my country. There are more than enough things I am not proud about it but I try to do my part. I try to present music that is not only entertaining but also educational because I feel that there is so much to be gained by knowing one’s history. I just tell stories. I try to let people fill in the blanks on how it applies to their life. I focus on the American experience and that is why I am “The American Songster”.

          I’ve read that you initially got into folk music around the age of 16 and that attending the 2005 Black Banjo Gathering was a major turning point for you as a musician. For a kid born & raised in the burbs of Phoenix, what is it about string band music that resonated so much with you?

          I wasn’t particularly interested in string band music at all when I was in Phoenix. That wasn’t until I went to NC and began playing with Rhiannon and Justin. The two of them knew more about string band music than me. My knowledge base included folk music from the 40’s to the 70’s, New Orleans Jazz, Jug Band Music, rock ‘n’ roll, doo wop, 60’s pop, country blues, honky-tonk, hillbilly, ragtime and variety of other types of music that were of interest to me. Mike Seeger was a stepping stone for me in terms of thinking about traditional music as a language that I could learn not only how to replicated and but how to create new ways of using it. I did this by understanding several styles of music all at once and being very conscious of the way that I adapted it.

          I have always been attracted to voices. If someone has an interesting vocal quality I am drawn to that. This can be sweet and rough it doesn’t matter. When I hear the quality I like I try my best to understand why it appeals to me. In folk music and old-time music there are a lot of interesting voices so its always a treat to listen for that new voice that will move me.

          Last year you made the decision to leave the Carolina Chocolate Drops, of which you are a founding member, to pursue your solo aspirations. How do you feel that move has/ will change your musical story or what you are able to communicate to your audience?
          When you play in a group, one always has to submerge a part of their own musical personality for the benefit of the group. A group is a team effort and everyone has to work together to make that happen. With that being said, I have played solo for a total of 15 years all learning many things along the way with the group but I have always had a separate repertoire that suited the things that I pursue. Because I never felt comfortable adding my original material to the Carolina Chocolate Drops show knowing that the historical material was the focus of the group, my solo show features a few original numbers that I have written over the past few years.

          My style also leads itself more toward country blues, early jazz and country music. While I have added old-time music into my repertoire over the course of the past ten years, most people are not as familiar with the other parts of my repertoire. I am always working on new ideas and I am continuing on my journey as a musician and performer I am really showing my audience my journey so far and letting them know that it is just the beginning.

          It seems that your personal interest in American history has been a driving force behind your style. I imagine that must influence your choice of songs to cover but begs the question- what comes first? The Song or The Story? Do you pick your songs or do they pick you?

          I always pick the song first. I don’t have to know anything about it. If a song moves me then I try to learn it and play it. I worry about the story afterwards. A long time ago, I decided that the material I perform MUST be material I personally enjoy. I feel this gives me the freedom to perform my material without the any feeling that I am obligated to do it and the audience benefits because they are can see that I am passionate about what I am performing and they can enjoy my performance because of that and also, I would hope, the material itself.

          The thing about talking about American is that the history has to mean something to the performer and the audience at the same time and they both need to be able to transcend the history. While the facts are interesting, if they don’t have an impact on the modern world at the time they are shown, who cares? The history never goes anywhere. For example, let’s take a song like Polly Put The Kettle On from my new record Prospect Hill. The fact that Sonny Boy Williamson I the first recorded this number with the pianist Blind John Davis in Chicago and that Sonny Boy Williamson I was a transitional figure in the development of blues harmonica means only that if I can’t play the harmonica at least convincing in that style. The history is interesting and will get people’s attention but if I am not delivering it then I lose the one thing I am trying to do as an interpreter which is make the music feels relevant. If folks walk away saying, “Oh that music is just old” then I really haven’t transcended as a performer on that song. Once you transcend the idea that history is stagnant, you can actually get perspective on it.

          You left music for a while in your early twenties to do performance-based art. How did your experience performing slam poetry influence your overall musical style?
          It gave me two major things artistically. It made me put my instrument down and perform without hiding behind it. When you have a guitar or any instrument it is so easy to hide behind it as a wall between you are the audience. When I was doing slam poetry, I was talking with an audience directly and saw a different way to interact with them. The other thing that slam helped me with was writing. In my community of writers, we had weekly writing and critiquing session, there was a slam every week, there was a role I played in the community with everyone pushing each other forward. With that, you couldn’t hold back. You had to “Bring It!” every time. Also in slam the judge at each performance all the way up the judges are 5 random people from the bar so you that the judging had no regular criteria just what people in the audience felt.

          I learned how to write prose and began performing that and it helped me understand the power of the words when you sing. Many folks tend to sing too much in my opinion and they forget that they are saying a message with words. This also doesn’t particular have to mean that you have to sing any less beautifully to do so. Just understand that you are in front of an audience and you are speaking a message to them. Own that message. I learned that when I was doing slam poetry. I had a lot of wonderful people teach me so much during that time.

          I’ve read that your guiding philosophy is to make music you would listen to... which I think is a great philosophy to have! What inspires your writing or creative process?
          That is actually my philosophy about recording. When recording, I feel that you must be able to remove yourself from your recording so much that you should listen to it as if you were given an unlabeled CD and knew nothing about the artist. Once you do that, ask yourself, “do I like this?” It is amazing how many times people go into the studio and do not do that then afterwards they think, “oh I shouldn’t have played that or that. What was I thinking?”

          I actually saw that in a Bob Dylan quote. When talking about his album Highway 61 Revisited, one of his most famous albums, he commented, “Yeah… that’s a good one. I’d listen to it!” Like you, that idea was very powerful. When you are putting out music its important to think about what you are putting out there. Not so much as to cripple your creative spark. When I put material out there I realize it will be reflected by my past and I try to find the best compromise to honor the past but make room for the future.

          My writing process is all over the place. Sometimes I write a title and work from there. Sometimes I meet someone and I make them into a model for a song. Its like a painter painting on a canvas. Other times, I take a song I know and write the words with that song in my head and then make a new melody with a different beat pattern. Other times, I just play great material that I didn’t write. These days I keep it pretty open. Haha!

          How does instrument selection for each song come into play? I love your song ‘San Francisco Baby’ that you wrote and performed with Pokey LaFarge accompanying you on guitar. How did that Historic Records Kitchen Session come about?
          I usually switch the instrumentation around a few times on each song I do just to get a feel. Each instrument has its own feeling and attack and sometimes it takes a little bit to set in.

          As for the Kitchen Songs Session, Jake Book, the fellow who does the videos, and I met in Cincinnati when I was doing an opening set for Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band last Fall. The two of us talked a bit and he told me about Kitchen Songs. I was looking to get more videos up on youtube to promote more of my current solo performances and we discussed doing a Kitchen Songs when I was playing with the Chocolate Drops in Knoxville last Dec.

          I’ve known Pokey LaFarge since about 2008 when he was solo and the two of us have kept in touch over the years and we had finally gotten to get a double bill together with his group and the Carolina Chocolate Drops. That was a fun tour! Pokey and I have talked about doing something for years and when I mentioned Kitchen Songs to Pokey he was all for it and we recorded one song that I led and one that he led. “San Francisco Baby” was still a very new song at that point and Pokey had heard it at another show we were on so we decided on that one.

          This is a perfect example of switching instrumentation on a song. Knowing that guitar is Pokey’s main instrument so I played banjo for that video when I usually play guitar. Its not really a big deal for me to do so but I figured that the combination of guitar and banjo might be better than two guitars. The video turned out well I believe.

          How did you get involved with the Music Maker Relief Foundation and can you tell us more about it?
          Music Maker Relief Foundation is a non-profit organization that helps out traditional Southern artists with support so that they can continue making the music that makes them a treasure to their community.

          I got involved with Music Maker in 2006 when I met Tim Duffy at the Shakori Hills Festival in Silk Hope, NC. The Chocolate Drops had just recorded the songs that would be our first album, Dona Got A Ramblin’ Mind and Tim agreed to put it out. I had actually first heard about Music Maker a few years earlier because some of the more prominent records they had out were in my local library. Once I got to got to know Tim and his wife Denise and see the work they do I couldn’t help but be moved to work with them.

          Since starting to work with them, I have done shows with many of the artists including record a CD with Boo Hanks from Buffalo Junction, VA. The experiences I have learned being involved with Music Maker have helped me develop as both a musician and a person.

          What does the rest of 2014 have in store for Dom Flemons?
          I have a new album coming out in July called Prospect Hill. This will be my third solo album. I will continue making concert appearance throughout the summer including WOMAD in the UK doing a collaborative show with folk singer Martin Simpson. We will be going into the Cecil Sharpe archives in London and re-interpreting song of the old ballads. I will continue to write articles and also try my best to spread around articles I have read through social media. It’s a big world there are a lot of things out there and I can’t wait to dive in head first!

          Dom expands a bit on the tracklist for the EP~

          These songs are a little taste of the work I’ve done between the years of 2004-2009. If you want to hear more of my work from this period please check out my first two Music Maker album, “Dance Tunes, Ballads and Blues” & “American Songster”
          I hope you enjoy this first vinyl release! All the best to you all and keep on spreading the good music around!
          Dom Flemons The American Songster

          1. Yonder Comes the Blues
          This is a song I first heard from Ma Rainey. I thought back on some of the writings I have read in regarding the way that Charlie Patton arranged her piece “Booze & Blues” into his own “Tom Rushen Blues”. With thought in my head, I decided to make a guitar blues that would show off some of my guitar skills in K.C. Tuning or Open D.
          2. Viper Mad
          I heard Viper Mad on the sountrack to the Woody Allen film “Sweet & Lowdown”. When I first began playing four-string banjo, I developed a slide guitar style after reading about Gus Cannon playing it on his classic ”Poor Boy, Long Ways From Home”. I play bottleneck style on this piece compared to the Hawaiian style that Gus used (I use that style on Tom Dula on the first CCD album “Dona Got A Ramblin’ Mind”). This piece has been a staple of my repertoire for many years. In case you're wondering who's playing the jug, that's me too.
          3. Night Woman Blues
          I wrote this song on slide banjo. I got caught up on the riff and began putting the words together to this song. I was listening to a lot of Son House at that time. The “Night Woman” was a beautiful woman I knew back in Flagstaff, AZ when I was in college. She would come and visit me in my apartment after classes and I could always tell when she was coming because she wore these heeled sandals that would click up the stairs and across my tile floor to my room where I would doing my favorite past times: kicking up my feet and listening to records.
          4. Stackolee
          This is a composite piece I put together of several versions of Stackalee. I first heard this one from Dave Van Ronk’s version. Van Ronk learned his version from Furry Lewis’ recording. I put a few verses from Mississippi John Hurt as well that made a complete story. This is a quintessential part of Black AND White American folklore. If you want to read more on the subject I would look up Cecil Brown’s book “Stagolee Shot Billy” and The Old Weird America Wordpress Blog exploring Stackalee and old-time songs

          Kelley Stoltz Shares Some Secrets to Home-Recording, Gears up for a few Summer Shows with Jack White May 13 2014, 1 Comment

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          You know that feeling of being late to the party? Well that's my relationship with Kelley Stoltz.  

          Saw him open for the Raconteurs in 2006, liked him at the time and promptly forgot about him until SXSW 2014 when we saw him at Third Man’s pop-up showcase and I became completely smitten. Offbeat, witty and charming, Stoltz did not fail to entertain and I came home determined to learn more about him. Considering I completely overlooked his Third Man Records LP release Double Exposure last year better late than never, right? 


          Detroit-born & bred turned Bay Area performer, Stoltz is a multi-instrumentalist guru of home-recording whose unique style has earned him a strong local following and the respect of his peers.   

          Fresh off a lengthy European tour, he has graciously agreed to answer some of my questions…

          You semi-recently parted ways with Sub Pop- label for your past few albums- and released Double Exposure through Third Man Records. How do you think that change impacted this release? How was your experience creating under the Third Man Records umbrella? 

          It was a very easy transition... I had signed to do three subpop lps and we did that - i had a good relationship with them, and though it was kinda strange being let go it was sort of pre-ordained.  If i had sold more records they wouldve kept me.  In the time after that I had sent the record to some friends at third man - more because they were curious than anything and fans, so when they called to say they wanted to put it out i was thrilled.  

          It’s my understanding that you moved from more of an apartment-based recording setting to a garage studio for the recording of Double Exposure. Do you feel that change of space provided a different perceived sound to your audience? Did it change anything about your process?  

          No not really, it just gave me more room for more stuff.  I was tripping over cables less so maybe that made for a more relaxed approach. (:  Soundwise i could experiment with mics further away rather than close micing everything due to space.

          'Kim Chee Taco Man’ is one of the quirkiest videos and songs I’ve heard in the past few years- in a totally great way. What was behind the idea to release it as the lead single from Double Exposure?  

          It was the easiest to make a video for - I just decided it would be a fun weird visual introduction to the album.  In retrospect, it mightve put some people off to what the rest of the album was about.

          You have been home-recording and playing most instrumental tracks yourself for some time now. Given the accessibility of current technologies and the DIY element of today’s music scene, many new artists are utilizing these techniques to record and self-publish. What advice would you have for newbies attempting to self-record their own material?  

          Just concern yourself with the melody and the song and the joy of it.  Dont get caught up in how or where you record or onto what medium.  Have fun and experiment... and work at it everyday.

          As multi-instrumentalist for the majority of your recordings, touring must be another matter entirely. Do you generally travel with the same core bandmates?  

          Yes, there have been changes over the last 15 years of course, but the core group i have now has been with me for several years. 

          I had the pleasure of seeing you in 2006 when your performance was definitely more keys oriented. Caught you again recently at Third Man Record’s Pop-Up Store in Austin for SXSW and noticed you were primarily playing guitar. What motivated that change?  

          I had a piano for the first time in my life in early 2000's so I taught myself to play it and after years of just writing on guitar, it was real nice to change my approach. Plus I was in a heavy Harry Nilsson and Beach Boys stage so I wanted to write those kind of songs. 

          I love your little stories and anecdotes intermingled with your music. How has that charming stage banter evolved?  

          I was always interested in comedy, and have tried to make people laugh my whole life.  If the humorous banter is flowing its a good gig for me, if im quiet - I'm probably struggling inside.

          I’ve read that you started writing songs in your 20s and believed you were ‘behind the curve’ so to speak. Considering you felt you got a bit of a late start, how does it now feel to be considered an ‘elder’ in a way in the Bay Area music scene?  

          Its nice I guess, I think I just influenced some people to do their own thing and record at home and maybe add a bit of quality to their songs.  Some have gone on to way bigger things than me.   

          When you’re in the process of writing, what are your creative catalysts?  

          Just sitting with a cup of tea and strumming or playing a drum beat and hoping a melody will come and when it does its best to move fast.   

          Your 2006 album ‘Below the Branches’ made history by being the first release to make an on-package renewable energy claim utilizing the Green-e logo. Are you still practicing ‘Green techniques’ in your performing, recording & touring?  

          Not really, sadly - I kind of lost my way with details like that - I had a friend who was managing that aspect of my career - and on my own its enough to do the art and the songs and the managerial things. I still do what I can in more modest ways, like offsetting air travel.

          I’ve heard you were ‘raised on Monty Python’ and are a fan of Ricky Gervais. Do you by chance watch any of Karl Pilkington’s shows? Between an ‘An Idiot Abroad’ and ‘The Moaning of Life’, which would you prefer?  

          Monty Python - there the Beatles of that world for me.  Though I cant wait to see the new Steve Coogan "Alpha Papa" movie.

          You’ve just wrapped up a pretty major European/UK tour… what does the remainder of 2014 have in store?  

          Some shows with Jack White and a few festivals around California.  Maybe another set of dates and then try to make a new record, before I get too much older.

          Thanks so much to Kelley for taking the time to indulge my inquiries. And now, what you've all been reading for! Kelley answers THE OFFICIAL FIVE WAX O’S GOTTA KNOW QUESTIONS!

          1) First vinyl memory? 

          Buying a 45 of "another One Bites the Dust" by Queen and ordering kind of blindly from Columbia Record Club... I ended up with some Foreigner and other things only cause I'd heard their name on radio.

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment? 

          Zoot Sims "Zoot!"

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection? 

          Green On Red "Gas Food Lodging"

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

          I loved John Krautners new album, it'll be out soon. 

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

          Dylan Shearer, Danny James, Dirty Ghosts. Ezra Furman.

          With 'Kludge' Pujol Demostrates That Mixing Deep Thoughts with Rock & Roll Can be 'A Crock That Works' May 06 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          Many of you know what a huge fan I am of Pujol. He’s an artist who is physically based in Nashville, although his thoughts and ideas seem to span the universe- a modern day thinking man’s rocker if you will.


          I first became acquainted with Puj (as he’s apparently known in smaller, probably more esoteric, circles) when his ‘Black Rabbit’ single appeared via Third Man Records



          I began looking into (and collecting) his previous works, which were fairly extensive much to my surprise. He sings about real life problems I, and I think so many Americans-under-the-age-of-40 can probably relate to given the current state of our country/ economy/ environment/ etc., but it’s all packaged in these upbeat, punky, beach boys-esque tunes that just JAM so hard it’s easy to overlook the heavier messages often imparted. But that’s what I appreciate most about him- he’ll delve into these dark, more cosmic topics in such an honest and endearing way, you just can’t not love him. 


          United States of Being’ (one of the BEST albums of the past decade just so you know) hit me personally at a time in my life when I was on the heels of working through some issues similar to things he was exploring in his music. Lines like ‘we saw the same thing right at the same time too’ and ‘I must be consistent with what I believe in or I live a lie’ just really struck me, and stuck with me, and I’ve been a Pujol Proponent ever since. 

          Needless to say, I’ve been eagerly anticipating ‘Kludge’, his sophomore follow up LP for some time now. Slated to be officially released May 20 th, all pre-orders come with an early download and I awoke to find my digital download from Saddle Creek this morning. Was fortunately able to load it up into my phone and have since been immersing myself in it throughout my work day. 



          His first single from the album ‘Pitch Black’ is reportedly about ‘someone so alienated by contemporary language and communication he/she surveys old matinee movies on their lunch break and cries.’ Well that person might be crying but I’m rocking out- super catchy, standard Pujol wit. Lines ‘because this economic language to talk about God makes me wanna cram my head in a hole’ and ‘because I'm running out of reasons to trick myself into never ever building a home’ are true standouts and really exemplify the things I love hearing Pujol communicate about. 


          Circles’, his Record Store Day release, available on lizard-green vinyl showcases what Pujol and his boys do best- intense, frenetic shredding accompanied by considered, thoughtful observations of real life shit. 

          Other initial standouts to me are~

          ‘Judas Booth’ which starts out (in a musical manner reminiscent of Kelley Stoltz to me) with the sadly awesome admition of ‘I’m getting back into the swing of things, I had a real bad year. I’ve been having trouble connecting with that funny feeling I might call God. But I think I did a real good job of convincing myself not to blow my brains out against the wall.’ I mean, seriously, who can’t relate to that? 

          'Manufactured Crisis Control', a pit-inducing tune about the battles one can wage within oneself. 'I'm in a fist fight! a fist fight!'

          The lovely and super sweet ode to his gal Friday and their bunnies, ‘Spooky Scary'. It might be written about another couple, but I've totally had similar thoughts about my own man and our little zoo. And ultimately, my personal goal is to make enough money ('I'm made of money!') to afford to stay home (or not) and enjoy my time on this earth so can totally relate to 'I just want to make enough bread to get to lay in bed'. 

          Also 'Youniverse', another prime example of Pujol's wonderfully weird way of blending punk, beach rock, love and universal leanings. 'I want to spend some of my time with you because I know I'm going to die and that you will die too'.

          So go. Get your Kludge on. And be sure to catch Daniel and his boys on one of their upcoming tour dates:

          May 22 Golden Tea House Philadelphia, PA
          May 23 Death By Audio Brooklyn, NY
          May 24 Mercury Lounge New York, NY
          May 25 Happy Dog Cleveland, OH
          May 26 PJ'S LAGERHOUSE Detroit, MI
          May 27 Elastic Chicago, IL
          May 28 MOTR w/ Swearin' Cincinnati, OH
          May 29 The Pyramid Scheme Grand Rapids, MI
          May 30 MAJESTIC THEATER Madison, WI
          May 31 7th St Entry Minneapolis, MN
          Jun 03 Chop Suey Seattle, WA
          Jun 04 Star Theater Portland, OR
          Jun 06 Bottom Of The Hill San Francisco, CA
          Jun 07 The Echo Los Angeles, CA
          Jun 08 Pub Rock Scottsdale, AZ
          Jun 10 Larimer Lounge Denver, CO (YAY!)
          Jun 11 BOTTLENECK Lawrence, KS
          Jun 12 The Demo St Louis, MO
          Jun 13 Zanzabar Louisville, KY
          Jul 17 Exit/In Nashville, TN

          The Ghost Wolves are 'Gonna Live' and Melt Faces April 15 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          Photo by Stephen Ceresia

          I stumbled across The Ghost Wolves (who, in case you didn't know, are an ultra-awesome band home-grown in Austin TX) watching a KUTX Austin performance posted to youtube of BP Fallon for 'Increasingly Often' where they were his backing band. Intrigued by their chemistry and their stage wear- black & white ensembles- I sought out more videos of their band and quickly discovered that not only did they look cool, they fucking rocked!

          Now I won't say 'new White Stripes' but this fab duo definitely brought my long-time musical loves to mind. Obvious comparisons aside, however, The Ghost Wolves are carving out their own piece of Rock & Roll History with their addictive blend of garage punk mixed with the seamy underbelly of the swampy south and that dash of weird that only Austin can provide. Songs 'Big Star', 'Snake & Jake Shake' and 'Gonna Live' give great insight into what this band is all about.

          Comprised of Actual Real Life couple Carley & Jonny Wolf, The Ghost Wolves- who list 'melting faces' as one of their band interests- didn't fail to melt mine when I finally got to see them Live & In Person at SXSW this year. Carley's demure demeanor is instantly put to bed as soon as she steps up to the microphone. Kind of Coco-ish from the Ettes, her distinctive vocals will take your ears by pleasant surprise. Jonny’s drumming and interspersed vocals are the perfect compliment to her sass and wailing mastery of blues slide guitar.

          Their strong 2011 inaugural LP debut 'In Ya Neck' will soon be followed up by 'Man, Woman, Beast' (Plowboy Records) on May 27, 2014. Boasting 10 studio tracks and 3 bonus live cuts, it promises to delve deep into the minds of these two delivering "music to drive 100 miles per hour to."

          Recently had a chance to chat with Jonny about where they've been, where they're headed and the wolves in their lives...

          What are your backgrounds? How did you two meet and start making music together?  

          We met at a Cramps show in Houston...the one where Lux Interior wore a Leopard print body suit and crawled around on the floor at the end .... Carley was in the front row with her aunt Jet. We'd been romantically involved for a while before we decided to start a rock band. It's been a great unifier in our relationship and both sides of it tend to feed off each other. Sometimes when we fight, we turn around, make up, and write a song. 

          Photo by Stephen Ceresia

          It’s my understanding you recently married and started a family. How has that changed your dynamic as a band?  

          We got married but we haven't started a family! That's just rumors! Being married hasn't changed any one thing in particular but feels like it just kind of elevated it all.

          I’d love to know the story of your actual ghost wolf.  

          Carley was raised on a ranch in the Texas hill country where her dad rescued animals from people who couldn't keep them. One of the oldest males, Ice, diedin his sleep right as we started the band and that's where the name came from.

          I love this punkish, swampy blues feel mixed with the odd air of Austin you’ve got going on. Who have been major influences in your style?  

          Thanks! We love : The Cramps, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Iggy and The Stooges, Dead Weather, White Stripes, Black Sabbath, R.L. Burnside, Muddy Waters, Robert Johnson, Captain Beefheart, Dr. John, Fats Domino, Johnny Vidacovich, Ronnie Dawson, ...American music...blues based, all of that - that's where we're coming from.

          Like Nashville, Austin is a pretty musical town. What’s it been like establishing yourselves in a town full of musicians?  

          Well, it's never easy, but Austin's great. There are so many kick ass musicians here...people that just kill it all the time and it's a great community to be a part of. It's maybe not cut throat like NYC or LA but it's still very vibrant, and there's lots of inspiration to check out everywhere. There's lots of little scenes in town with varying genres and vibes, so you can bounce around and see a lot of different stuff.


          Photo by Stephen Ceresia

          Can you please tell me a little bit about your equipment and set up?  

          Sure, Carley typically plays through a Musicman HD-130 amp and a 2x15 cabinet. I just play a simple four piece drumkit, ludwig or slingerland, tuned low and thuddy. Two vocals and that's the show!

          I’m a huge fan of dynamic duo’s- The White Stripes, The Kills, Hall & Oates to name a few- and I’m always intrigued by the songwriting process (or lack thereof) that can occur in this kind of framework. Do you each have your own roles in writing a song, or do you guys trade off in writing contributions?   

          We co-write everything. 50/50 most of the time. Team writing really works for us.

          You’ve worked a bit with BP Fallon, most recently on his 2014 SXSW showcases. What has playing with him been like?  

          Oh, well BP is just a hell of a guy first off - I mean first you have his history, which is very deep and deserving of respect -  but we're really interested in what he's doing moving forward. As in, here's this older guy, he's worked in and around music all his life, with some real luminaries, but never actually played, and just now he decides it's time to start a rock and roll band. How many people at that age can say that? He has a really unique perspective - I like to think of him like a shaman or a musical witch doctor or something, and he brings that to his show, and I think people love that. I'm a big fan of his spoken word vibes. He's very creative. It's been a really interesting trip to do some music with him. We don't typically let anyone else into our world, it's not easy, but he came into it with a lot of grace and we enjoyed it a lot.

          As a huge animal lover, I think it’s important to note that you are also. Please introduce your touring companions… 

          Winter is our main guy! He sheds 100 pounds of white fur every year and has girlfriends in every town.

          Photo by Darin Back

          What does 2014 have in store for The Ghost Wolves?  

          'Man, Woman, Beast' out May 27 on Plowboy Records and then tour tour tour tour tour tour tour coffee taco taco burrito tour sleep coffee beer sleep tour tour tour burrito sleep beer beer tour coffee!!!


          Many thanks again to Jonny & Carley for taking time out of their rocking schedule to participate in this Q&A!

          The Ghost Wolves are gonna be hittin' the road and (if you're lucky!) may soon be in a town near you. Listed below are their upcoming scheduled gigs thus far: 

          TOUR DATES:

          4/17/14 - Indianapolis, IN @ Radio Radio w/ Drivin N Cryin
          4/18/14 - Milwaukee, WI @ Shank Hall w/ Drivin N Cryin
          4/19/14 - Chicago, IL @ Reggie's w/ Drivin N Cryin
          4/20/14 - Newport, KY @ Southgate Revival w/ Drivin N Cryin
          4/21/14 - Lexington, KY @ Cosmic Charlies w/ Drivin N Cryin
          4/26/14 - Austin, TX @ Blackheart FREE RESIDENCY
          4/29/14 - Austin, TX @ Continental Club w/ Barfield
          5/3/14 - Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live
          5/23/14 - Austin, TX @ TBA ALBUM RELEASE PARTAY
          5/30/14 - Pensacola, FL @ Sluggo's
          5/31/14 - Birmingham, AL @ Bottle Tree
          6/2/14 - Nashvile, TN @ The Basement
          6/3/14 - Knoxville, TN @ Pilot Light
          6/4/14 - Asheville, NC @ Odditorium
          6/5/14 - Charlotte, NC @ Evening Muse
          6/6/14 - Winston-Salem, NC @ The Garage
          6/7/14 - Raleigh, NC @ Slim's
          6/8/14 - Richmond, VA @ Bandito's
          6/11/14 - Brooklyn, NY @ Shea Stadium
          6/13/14 - Biddeford, ME @ Oak and Axe
          6/14/14 - Portsmouth, NH @ The Press Room
          6/18/14 - Lexington, KY @ Green Lantern
          6/19/14 - Cincinnati, OH @ MOTR Pub
          6/20/14 - Dayton, OH @ Canal St. Public House
          6/21/14 - Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups
          6/22/14 - Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballrom & Tavern
          6/23/14 - Akron, OH @ Annabelle's
          6/27/14 - Ferndale, MI @ New Way
          6/28/14 - Grand Rapids, MI @ Mexicains Sans Frontieres
          6/30/14 - Chicago, IL @ Reggie's
          7/2/14 - Manitowoc, WI @ Music Without Boundaries
          7/3/14 - Green Bay, WI @ Crunchy Frog
          7/12/14 - Wyandotte, MI @ Wyandotte Street Art Fair
          8/8/14 - Pinedale, WY @ PFAC Summer Series
          9/27/14 - Cincinnati, OH @ Midpoint Music Festival

          And last but not least, The Ghost Wolves answer our Official Five WaxO’s Gotta Know Questions!

          1) First vinyl memory?

          Carley: Cat Stevens albums as a kid - Tea for The Tillerman is a big one. Jerry Lee Lewis also!

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

          Tan Vampires: For Physical Fitness , it's the perfect album, goddamn, we just love that band.

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

          The Cramps: Big Beat from Badsville!

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

          Really love Diarrhea Planet's work.

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

          Well we really love this Austin band called American Sharks, they're doing it so hard. Can't wait to see what they do next.

          Wax-O-001 Update- #WaxOCincO April 08 2014, 0 Comments

          Our inaugural release is slated to be up for sale on Cinco de Mayo, #WaxOCincO. In preparation for this EPIC Dom Flemons EP release, the materials have been making the rounds throughout our organization and we're created this video to share a bit with all of you...

          Oliver Richard Speaks Out About His New Single and the Art of Balancing Presence & Absence April 02 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          I first became acquainted with Oliver Richard, a Scotland-based solo artist, via his sold out Grimtale Records release ‘Triggerfish’ b/w ‘Far From the Day’.   

          Written exclusively for the Indie label, these two tracks offer an intriguing glimpse into the artist’s brain. Entirely different from one another- vacillating between wicked guitar riffs and haunting melodies backed by almost poetic lyrics—I was captivated from first listen. Not long after, I was pleasantly surprised to discover a 2013 Video EP (The First Take Cover Sessions) featuring covers of well-known songs including none other than The Dead Weather!  

          When he's not fielding collector inquiries (ok, mine) regarding recently discovered hand-written lyrics sheets available in singles originally sold from his web-site (and hopefully to be sold at future live shows!), Richards has been preparing for a busier 2014 than his introspective, song-writing year of 2013 entailed. Selected as one of several artists to be featured on a recent Grimtale Records project via the label's first (and only?) cassette release, he is in the process of finding a label to release his already recorded full-length LP. In advance of the varied and excited things to come, Oliver Richard has kindly agreed to participate in the following Q&A…  

          So, as a relatively new solo artist in the eyes of North America, please be so kind as to tell our readers a bit about yourself… Born? Raised? Background?

          I was born and raised in Scotland, by the North Sea. Music has always been with me in some way or another. I see it like a marriage or a faith: there are the years of plenty and then there are the years where you are starving. I went to school, then university, studied Neuroscience, graduated in 2011, then sacrificed that on the altar of music. I played my first show in 2009, acoustically, got a lot of love and gig offers, and started to play live in Aberdeen weekly. In 2010 I went electric, promptly lost most of my local fan-base and the gigs dried up. I was too loud and sonically unpredictable for the city’s ersatz Americana scene, and too difficult to define for the rock band circuits. 2011 was a year of writing and roadtesting new material live. 2012 saw me record what was now an album’s-worth of work, but due to a grave technical error, I lost it all that winter. I then swore off live shows for 2013 until I had re-recorded the album, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise as the songs took on a new life that year. Somewhere during this enforced exile, Grimtale Records offered me the chance to do a 7” which I grabbed with both hands.

          What set you on your musical path? How did your solo work evolve?  

          I received piano and cello tuition from an early age. I would get up early to practice those instruments, and then go to school. Music was purely an intellectual exercise back then (although I was too young to know it) and just another aspect of education. It was a bit like learning the alphabet or times tables or something– you just got on with it. However, that changed when I was about eleven. I turned on ‘Top of the Pops’ to see this man with red hair singing and playing a keyboard. Then out of nowhere he ripped into this electric guitar, and an avalanche of sound piled in. It was Muse playing ‘Newborn’ from their new album, Origin of Symmetry. At that moment the stars aligned, and my heart and guts caught up with my brain, so to speak.

          Who have been primary influences in your songwriting style?

          I find it difficult to pinpoint influences in my own work when it comes to other artists. Perhaps it’s because if I ever consciously hear or feel an idea entering another musician’s sphere, I try to steer things away from that direction. I want to create material that feels unique and representative of me, as far as possible, without sacrificing any authenticity or becoming contrived. In a way, the music I love exerts a push rather than a pull when I’m writing, like a repulsive influence... I’m not saying that I am working in some genius vacuum where I cannot be influenced by other music, but rather that I’m blind to it by and large, and possibly the worst person to ask...

          I’ve really enjoyed your Grimtale single ‘Triggerfish’, especially the b-side ‘Far From the Day’. Can you expand a bit on the song-writing process for those songs? What was the inspiration behind either song? Did you have preconceived ideas about what they should be or did they just evolve in the process?

           -Triggerfish has odd roots. The guitar came together whilst watching “Blue Valentine”. I was playing along to the film with a baritone guitar, and out of that came the majority of Triggerfish (albeit about ten times slower than the final cut). The lyrics started with an article I was reading by Billy Connelly’s wife. She was talking about snorkeling and mentioned triggerfish - a species I had never heard of before. I wrote the word in my notebook, thinking they’d been given their name due to hair-trigger temperaments, which was wrong. It’s apparently because they have a trigger-like mechanism on their back which allows the fish to ‘lock’ themselves into holes when threatened. I saw a parallel here with human behaviour which led to the lyrics as you hear them now.

          -Far From The Day was a song I finished in 2012 after concluding the writing for my debut album (which is not released as of yet, but has been recorded). Ultimately, it was a song without a home when I was offered the 7” opportunity, so I was glad to get it out there. I began writing it around five years ago, and it took a long time to complete, with the lyrics becoming the main sticking point, as they so often are for me. I can labour over a single line for literally months, which was very much the case for Far From The Day. There was a lot of crafting and shedding of dead wood with that song.

          As you may know I absolutely love The Dead Weather so I am curious as to what in particular inspired you to cover their ‘Rolling in on a Burning Tire’?

          I decided to do a stripped down video EP whilst writing my album, to give people something to watch/listen to whilst I was preparing my songs. From my then weekly live shows, I had accumulated a large collection of covers, and elected to choose five of these for the video EP which I would upload to Youtube. I called it “The First Take Cover Sessions” on account of fact that I performed each one only once, whilst filming and recording it. I wanted the videos to shed light on different facets of my musical output and tastes, and as Jack White is a source of inspiration for me, I chose to represent him during the sessions. Of the few songs of his I had covered live, I felt I had done the most interesting stuff with “Rolling in on a Burning Tyre”, by reducing a four piece, hard rock band’s extremely textural song to its bare bones. I liked the feeling of playing the riff, and how it almost tumbled into Dick Dale territory. Moreover, I thought it would be an interesting choice seeing as “Rolling...” is a non-album Dead Weather track.

          As a solo artist in today’s musical climate, how important has social media been to promoting yourself and getting your music out there?

          I have a troubled relationship with social media. I enjoy the easy dissemination of information (especially for gigs and live shows) but I’m a reluctant user, by and large. I normally subscribe to the ‘less is more’ attitude when it comes to artists and their online presence. I think too much activity can become a wall of white noise which will undermine your intentions of promotion. On top of that, it is so easy to get caught up in the meretricious things, like how many hits/likes/views you have. I never want to become the man who spends more time managing and promoting his online profiles than working on the music. However, I recognise there is a balance to be struck. I tried the zero tolerance approach to social networking when I was starting out, and all that did was unnecessarily tie one hand behind my back. With social media now entrenched as an everyday way of life for the vast majority of people, it is too valuable to be ignored as a way of promoting one’s music. I think the real trick is achieving a balance between presence and absence.

          How has it been to watch your first tangible single unfold in, primarily, an avid collectors market?

          I found it very exciting... Releasing music has become incredibly easy, riskless and virtually costless in the last few years. If you have a recording, that can be uploaded to the internet in minutes, and often for free. Whilst this initially would seem thrilling for the aspiring musician, I would argue that more often than not, this process devalues the music itself, regardless of quality. It comes back to the idea of white noise - everyone’s doing it and you just become part of that expanding miasma of uploads, free downloads, likes, shares and obscure streaming sites. Therefore, releasing my music on 7” has been really enjoyable as I have been part of something that is slightly different and stands apart from the crowd. I’ve still made the tracks available on Youtube and Soundcloud, etc, as it is vital for me that these songs are available to everyone, and not just squirreled away by collectors, but to have them officially, physically released is wonderful. It’s the best of both worlds: the convenience and accessibility of digital, alongside the comparative permanence and value of the collectible, tangible vinyl. Working with a label that does physical releases also indicates to folk that there’s someone out there with enough faith in your music to take an actual risk and stick their flag in the sand. That can prove contagious.

          It is my understanding you have a few things (including a possible full-length LP in the works)… anything you care to share regarding these projects?

          I finished recording my debut album at the end of 2013. It’s ten original tracks, and features an expansion of the sound displayed on my debut 7” with Grimtale Records. It will get mixed some time this year, but right now I am concentrating on my next single with the label. It features two new original songs, neither of which are album tracks. I wrote them in February, and am really happy with the way they are shaping up. Once these songs are headed to the pressing plant, I'll start looking into a label release for the LP. I also recently contributed two tracks to Grimtale Record’s first ever compilation album. One of the songs was the audio file from my “First Take Cover” video of Grinderman’s ‘Star Charmer’ (available on Youtube). The other was an original arrangement of the traditional song “Darling Cory” which I recorded in the studio last year. I’m particularly proud of that track as it displays the general direction in which my music has more recently being moving: loops, samples and textures woven around the spine of guitar and vocals.

          Again, so much thanks to Mr. Oliver Richard for taking the time to participate in this post and for answering The Official Five WaxO’s Gotta Know Questions!

          1) First vinyl memory?

          Playing with my grandpa’s turntable. I must have been about 5 or 6. I knew nothing about it or its function. I just remember those strobe dots round the rim of the platter...

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

          If you’re asking if there's an album I tend to only listen to specifically on vinyl (as opposed to any of the other mediums) it would probably be Yann Tiersen’s ‘Dust Lane’. It is simultaneously one of the most uplifting and melancholic LPs I have ever heard. It’s perfect for vinyl as the tracks flow into one another, it has huge dynamic range (therefore it suffers in the car) and has a very clear sense of two halves. It is gorgeous.

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

          St Vincent’s 'St Vincent'

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

          Queens of the Stone Age. They’ve been around since the stone age, but after watching the video for “I Appear Missing” on Youtube, I was finally convinced to take the plunge.

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

          Anything at all from Josh T Pearson. He fronted one of the most mysterious, powerful bands I have ever heard (Lift to Experience) in the late 90s/early 00s; they broke up after one album. He then disappeared for ten years and returned with a solo album, and some of the saddest music I have ever heard, “Last of the Country Gentlemen”. He’s gone to ground again. I hope he comes back.

          Lime Cordiale Wraps up Their SXSW Debut, Prepares for California Tour March 16 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          Lime Cordial-  a mixture of concentrated lime and sugar, sometimes used as a mixer for a cocktail.


          Lime Cordiale- a Sydney-based pop band fronted by beautiful brothers Oli & Louis Leimbach.

          Photo Courtesy of Big Picture Media

          Boasting a strong fan-following Down Under, the boys have recently debuted in the U.S. market with their sophomore EP "Falling Up the Stairs" (produced by Daniel Denholm, Midnight Oil). Featuring hits 'Bullshit Aside' and 'Sleeping at Your Door', Lime Cordiale prove to be extremely POP & FUN. With their catchy riffs & clever lyrics, Lime Cordiale provides a welcome & much needed change from the majority of pop at the fore-front of today's music scene. 

          They initially brought to mind a No Doubt/ Madness kind of ska/ reggae vibe mixed in with some early Sting/Police. That said, these boys have a truly distinct sound all of their own- I promise you won't be able to keep yourself from grooving. And would I lie to you?

          I recently had a chance to catch up with this hard-working band after their Big Picture Media Showcase at the Thirsty Nickel in Austin, TX for SXSW 2014. Here's what they had to say...

           (click photo above to link to video interview)


          Preparing for a Slew of SXSW Showcases, BP Fallon 'Rambles On' with Me About This, That & the Other March 08 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          Yes. That BP Fallon.

          Photo by Christopher Durst

          If you know the man of which I speak, you've probably been to some amazing parties. If you don't know of him, here's as brief an introduction as I could manage...

          BP began his star-studded, globe-trotting career as a young broadcaster in Ireland. Fast forward to a position with Apple Records (yes, that Apple Records) to acting as publicist for the likes of T Rex, Thin Lizzy and LED ZEPPELIN, he’s spent his life immersed in music.

          Photo by Bob Gruen

          He’s authored a few best-selling books, he’s DJ’d here and there, he’s managed & guru’d, he’s Wang Dang Doodled and Choogled about with the best of them.  

          Never one to sit idle, he recently launched his own musical career. A 2009 spoken-word, 3-sided single, TMR 022 ("Fame #9/ BP Fallon Interview by Jack White/ I Believe in ElvisPresley") released via Jack White and Third Man Records introduced Fallon in his new role of songster.

          Photo by Jo McCaughey

          Photo by Jo McCaughey

          It was followed by a crowd-funded 2012 LP release "Still Legal" with the Bandits- comprised of Aaron Lee Tasjan (guitar), Nigel Harrison (bass) and Clem Burke (drums). 

          Photo by Christopher Durst

          Spanning the gamut of love/lust/sin to more universally cosmic issues, Fallon’s first full-length foray into song-writing proves thoughtful and considered while rocking your socks off to no end. 

          As one does.

          Mr. Fallon has so kindly agreed to elaborate on some of his life experiences here with us...

          It’s my understanding that you started recording music a few years ago... in fact, I've read that you say we should 'blame Jack White' for starting your recording career’. So I’m curious, how did this project with The Bandits and the ‘Still Legal’ album come about? Was it something you had previously had in mind, or did it organically evolve?

          After recording the 45 with Jack White - his idea - I figured I had what most groups would sell their soul for ie a record produced by the coolest guy in rock'n'roll who also plays guitar on it, on one of the coolest record labels... so I thought, in a moment of madness, 'I should have a band'. Three phone calls to three friends later - to Clem Burke the drummer in Blondie in LA and Nigel Harrison who used to be the bass guitarist in Blondie and Aaron Lee Tasjan who played with The New York Dolls in South America, both of these cats in New York - I had a band. Then I sat there thinking 'My God, what have I done now?!'  So we wrote some songs in New York and then met up in Austin - which has become something of a spiritual home - and rehearsed in Kathy Valentine's house and then played at SXSW 2010. Then I figured 'We should make an album' and we did, near Austin at Red Horse Ranch Studio. It was wonderful, we just moved in and my pal Ian McLagan from the Small Faces/Faces joined us to play Hammond organ. Thus, 'Still Legal'. I'm so lucky to have these exemplary musicians who are also my friends. Ian, he says 'I know BP from before he had a hat'. And he does.

          How did the Pledge Music campaign factor in? Would you recommend it to artists as a fund-raising technique?

          Pledge Music was brilliant. We couldn't have made 'Still Legal' off our own bat without Pledge. Pledge - like Kickstarter and all the crowd-funding schemes - is driven by the audience and it's the audience that decides whether the project will happen or not. And people were very kind, like Bob Gruen donating limited edition prints of Jimmy Page and I on Led Zeppelin's plane Starship a hundred years ago and his prints of The Bandits' very first gig. John Paul Jones gave us permission to use as a Pledge reward a track on which I'd made my recording debut in 1964 with me playing finger-cymbals and him playing everything else except the drums, which were played by Ian McGarry of Bluesville. Google 'You Turn Me On' by Ian Whitcomb & Bluesville.  (Iggy & The Stooges guitarist) James Williamson saw on Facebook that we were doing the Pledge thing and offered his services to help. 'A Guitar Lesson By James Williamson' was sold boom! just like that and the guy who paid for it wrote and said it was the best day of his life ever. So Pledge allowed us to make the CDs with the great booklet designed by Steve Averill and - at United Record Pressing in Nashville which Jack White had hipped me to, they do all the Third Man Records pressings - make the LPs. When I had this 12" vinyl in my hands, that's when it hit home, 'Good Lord, we've made an album!' So, yes, Pledge is fabulous. 

          What/ how was your first live gig? Was it something you were nervous for or did you just feel that it was destined to be?

          It felt amazing and equally it felt normal, same as when I cut 'I Believe In Elvis Presley' with Jack White. In other words, it didn't feel weird. Incredible buzz but very natural. And at our first gig it was a gas to look out and see Bob Gruen and Lenny Kaye grooving at the front. Lenny's since played with us a bunch of times, a great honor for me. Once we were playing at the post-SXSW party at Red Horse Ranch - we're playing there again this year - and I'm singing 'Van And Gloria' which namechecks Eric Burdon and The Animals playing at The Club A Go Go in Newcastle yonks ago and I look out and there's Eric Burdon bopping away. You do go 'This is far-out', which it is. Or I was doing a gig with The Ghost Wolves backing me - they're fantastic, cool to the max - and you see Jerry Hall grooving and later she tells you how she'd called her ex-husband to rave about the gig and he'd said 'Oh, I know him'. So you get into this zone where reality and unreality embrace and it's beautiful, very high. It's a gas to be making music and I give thanks. 

          You once described Johnny Thunders as 'self-obsessed like any artist'. In working on this album, with your band, have you noticed any of those traits emerging in yourself? How have you found songwriting? Had you ever tried it before? What became your process?

          Ah, Johnny, God bless him. I love him, you know. No, not sexually (laughs) but because he was a lovely man - as well as being so talented as a guitar-player, as a songwriter, as a singer. Just brilliant. But... (long pause)... smack doesn't work and for Johnny it became a nightmare. Just Say Know. 

          Songwriting? It's magic, a form of divining. You go into a room with nothing and angels willing you came out with something you can share with the world. I always carry with me a little policeman's notebook and a pen and for years I'd be writing down these lines, ideas, what someone said. And I never knew why I was doing this. Now I know. 

          Following my first listen to 'Still Legal', I came away from it with a very cosmic vibe- a more large-scale commentary on 'flow' if you will… a message of personal metamorphosis and growth, not letting time sit idle because it’s fleeting, etc. Although the album and its contents obviously have other themes as well, I have to say this one that has stuck with me the most. Has this always been an important concept to you or is it one that you’ve awakened to more recently?

          I've always been conscious that every moment that's a good vibe is to be treasured. The bad stuff... well, it's better to have it behind you than in front so in order for that to happen sometimes the crap has to be in the now. Healing hurts but it redeems too. 

          Along the same lines, from some of your material I read that it is important to you to 'be here now'. I think that's a struggle many people face on a daily basis. Do you struggle with that or do you find it's something that comes easily to you?

          Well, there's nowhere else to be than the now. The past is gone and the future is hypothetical. Yes, the past shapes the now and the now shapes the future, the same way that the manner in which you flick the paint brush determines how it'll look on the canvas. So it's often a matter of sync or sink. 

          Your Green Series release (‘Fame #9/ I Believe in Elvis Presley) through Third Man Records is actually one of my favorites (next to Edgar Oliver’s ‘In the Park/ Light and Hunger’). Did you have notes going into it or did it all evolve in the studio?

          Like I say, I'd been scribbling down things in my notebook without knowing why. So when Jack White invited me to collaborate on making a record, I already had 'I Believe In Elvis Presley', the lyrics and the tune- and Aaron Lee Tasjan came up with that catchy guitar riff which makes it truly special. The spoken word piece 'Fame #9' I wrote on the plane from New York to Nashville but by mistake I left it on the plane in Nashville so in Jack's studio I recited it as I remembered it in my head.

          In it, especially ‘Fame #9’, you make some very accurate and honest observations of Fame. You’ve also seen a lot of Fame play out from more of a ‘working’ capacity. How did those experiences and observations prepare you for your own personal ‘15 minutes, especially following that release?

          When I was still a schoolboy in Ireland, every Saturday I was on television talking about the new record releases, the show 'Pickin' The Pops', would the record be a hit or a miss, y'know? Television - black and white television - was in its infancy in Ireland and when I walked around people, um, noticed me. 'Ireland's most controversial television personality' was one newspaper headline - this is 1964 - because I had what people considered long hair and because I said what I thought. Then when I was working with Marc Bolan and with Led Zeppelin in England, the papers would write about me because they thought I was wild, that I was a colorful fellow. So folk noticing me... I'm used to it. It comes with the gig of being me. 

          Your life history and experiences are simply amazing. As far as writing goes, will we ever see a written account of some of your tales?

          We'll see. 

          If you had one piece of advice to give your younger self, what would it be?

          Very good question. I've never really panicked much but if I did it'd be "Don't Panic'.

          I see that you’re on the 2014 SXSW schedule again, along with the Bandits. Can we expect to see any new material? Any chance you’ll sit in with The Ghost Wolves again?

          Maximum namedrop moment: John Lennon, bless him, told me "The Plastic Ono Band is Everyone" and thus I too became a member, appearing in John Lennon & The Plastic Ono Band twice on television, once banging a tambourine and another time pretending to play bass guitar. Now I wouldn't dream of comparing our combo to him but yes, everyone is in BP Fallon & The Bandits and also we don't believe in segregation between ourselves and the audience, we're all in this together. Like I mentioned, Lenny Kaye has been a Bandit in Austin and in New York and in Ireland. Sean Lennon has drummed with us, Cara Delevingne has sung backing vocals. And last year at SXSW, Clem and Nigel and Aaron and I, us Bandits, at our live gigs we were joined on stage by Scott Asheton the drummer from The Stooges and Barrie Cadogan who plays guitar in Primal Scream. This year at SXSW Clem will be playing with Blondie and their schedule is very tight - so BP Fallon & The Bandits will be BP Fallon & The Ghost Wolves who are Carley on guitar and Jonny on drums and they're incredible. Carley, well... she's incredibly sexy, almost feral, and Jonny's the coolest. Plus you never know who'll join us! I'm very very excited. 

          Photo by Brian Birzer, courtesy of KUTX

          So much thanks & appreciation to BP for participating in this Q&A!

          BP can be found this coming week in Austin, TX performing with the #SXSW14 version of the Bandits, otherwise known as The Ghost Wolves! (a sincerely rocking band in their own right)

          Showcases are as follows: 

          Wed March 12th @ 10.15pm - Official SXSW Showcase at Red 7 

          Thurs March 13th @ 2:00pm - Official SXSW Panel: 'The Band Portrait - Marketing'Perception'

          Fri March 14th @ 2:50pm - Dog & Duck 

          Fri March 14th 7.30pm-BP Fallon added to Richard Barone's SXSW Tribute Concert For Lou Reed at The Paramount Theater in Austin

          Sat March 15th @ 5pm - Casinos South

          Sat March 15th @ 6pm - Maria's Taco Xpress  

          Sun March 16th @ afternoon - Red Horse Ranch 

          Sun March 16th @ 6:30pm - The Continental (Alejandra Escovedo's show :)


          And now BP responds to our Top Five WaxO’s Gotta Know questions:

          1) First vinyl memory?

          First record I ever owned was by Gene Vincent, the 'Crazy Times' LP. I didn't have a record player and I used to hold it, gaze at this magic thing. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that I'd one day make an LP, it was never the plan. Not that I'm complaining, mind you. Completely the opposite, actually.

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?

          Oh, tons of them! I love Neil Young & Crazy Horse's 'Psychedelic Pill' record, it takes me to new places unknown.

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection?

          My Bloody Valentine 'mbv', Primal Scream - 'More Light', The Strypes - 'Snapshot'.

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?

          4 & 5- The Strypes. I love these guys, love their energy, love their attitude, love their work ethic. If they want it and if the angels allow, they can become the biggest group in the world. And then the floodgates for teen rock'n'roll will burst open again, fresh and refreshed and ready to shake it. Good morning! Long may we choogle...

          The Dough Rollers Roll on to Austin Celebrating a New Single & Upcoming EP March 04 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver
          Birthed of blues aspirations, The Dough Rollers will certainly surprise you.
          Depending on which Dough Rollers configuration you listen to first, you might think you’ve traveled back in time to either a 1920’s low country blues bar or possibly to the Freedom Rock era of 1978. 
          Original New York based duo Malcolm Ford (vocals, guitar) and Jack Byrne (guitar) have evolved over the past few years- experimenting with a fiddle player for a bit- finally arriving at full-fledged band status with their addition of Josh Barocas (bass) and Kyle Olson (drums).
          Photo by Jo McCaughey
          Their Third Man Records 2013 single release TMR 216Little Lily/ The Sailing Song’ features the group in their current state. Sans the sartorial splendor of their early days, they are better equipped to impart their diversified message in a far more relatable way.
          Initially they struck me as kind of Chris Robinson meets Little Feat. Reaching further into their back catalog, their vast array of influences becomes more evident. Check out the video for 'Mansion on a Hill'.
          (Warning- You may find yourself craving a whiskey sour… or some barbeque… I don’t know, but get you some)
          In the meantime, check out what Jack Byrne & Kyle Olson have to say regarding their upcoming EP, SXSW showcases and what it was like to record in Third Man Records.
          I know you most frequently perform in NY & LA and have toured with some major musicians such as Bob Dylan and QOTSA. Will this be your first time playing SXSW? What showcases/ venues will you be playing?
          Jack Byrne: Malcolm and I played Austin City Limits a few years ago when it was just the two of us, but this is gonna be our first time at SXSW. We're playing at The Museum of Human Achievement for Third Man Records on Saturday the 15th and then at Rusty's for the "See Something Say Something Showcase" also on Saturday. If it's anything like ACL, I'll be ready to sit in traffic for hours, but other than that I don't know what to expect.
          Kyle Olson: I played SXSW a couple years ago with another band, Friend Roulette, but yea this will our first time down there as Dough Rollers.
          You’ve got a new EP coming out through Third Man Records this spring and Rolling Stone Magazine recently previewed your first single from it, ‘Gone Baby Gone’. What do you feel this EP best represents about your band? Is ‘Gone Baby Gone’ indicative of an overall theme?
          JB: I dunno - I guess hopefully that's it's just a good time. That we're playing things that just feel good - not worrying about all the other bullshit. All these people seem to be spending so much time worrying about "am I doing things exactly like the way they say I'm supposed to? blah  blah etc. etc." It seems like a lot of music in general, but especially rock has lost that thing - I don't know what it is exactly - fun, sense of humor, whatever it is that made it cool in the first place. Like there's nothing cool or fun about Coldplay, you know? Or like this thing thats shown up in the past few years of all these bullshit, whiny "indie" bands. What happened to Diamond Dave? So many people are so worried they're gonna piss somebody off or some dick on the internet is going to like their record that all this shit just winds up being this kind of stale, safe rehash of the same stale, safe shit we've been hearing for years now. I'm not saying we're trying to reinvent the wheel or anything but I mean come on rock music is supposed to be fun right? Hopefully if you listen close you can tell where we stole all our shit from, you know, "our influences" and hopefully you can just hear the freedom for experimenting that we had in the studio when we made the album.
          KO: Yea I think this new EP has a lot to do with the spirit we felt coming out of our "Little Lily" recording session for the Third Man single. Just trying to make forward motion into rock - you know like take where we've been while also honoring a different / fresh set of influences. Maybe "Gone Baby Gone" is indicative of an overall theme - I don't know really. Of just saying fuck it and having a good time.
          And it’s my understanding you’ve actually had two albums prior ('The Dough Rollers" self-titled and "Someday Baby") How did you find the process of releasing your own albums?
          JB: I mean it was fine. There wasn't really much of a plan or process with those. We just did some recording and needed something to sell on tour so we printed up some albums and sold them. I actually don't think we have any left, which means that fortunately they're now gone forever. It was easy enough but not something that you really want to keep doing forever.
          You’ve gone through a few evolutions as a band and your current configuration makes for quite a different sound compared to your earlier style. How did you go from folk/blues duo to a 4-piece rock band? What precipitated the loss of your more ‘costumed’ look?
          JB: I guess we just did. You know for some reason now it's like if you do one thing you're not allowed to do anything else or it's going to blow people's minds to the point that they just can't comprehend how the same people could possibly do different shit. We started off with the more acoustic sound because it made sense for us at the time but then like with so many other things, you want to expand your horizons or some shit like that and gradually, maybe without even knowing it, you just kinda move on to something else. There's so much different music, why would you want to just play the same thing over and over again? Where we're at now has just sort of been the natural progression of playing together and listening over the past however many years it's been. Plus when you start bringing different people in and they bring their own background and influences, like when Kyle joined a couple years ago, things are bound to change. 
          I’m sure you get asked this a ton, but as a long time Third Man Fan and Vaulter, I gotta know- what’s it like to work and record in Third Man Records? How did that initial Blue Series single evolve? You also played the Desert Gold show at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs last year... how fun was that?
          KO: They're really just the coolest bunch of people down there. Basically we got the call about doing a single and that kick-started this daily practice routine of writing and tightening - sort of zeroing in on "a sound." Point being though when we got there we were ready to bang the songs out in a couple takes - which was cool because it gave enough time that we got to see Jack White put his own flavor in there. Really inspiring to see how quickly and creatively he works. Palm Springs was a lot of fun - we had a great hang and alcohol fueled bonding session with all our buddies in the Third Man crew at their house. Our old bass player Josh wound up passed out in just a towel outside on a deck chair with people trying to burn him with lighters and shit to wake him up.
          JB: It was just a great experience all in all being down there and recording and what not. It was great because it was something we had spoken about a few years ago and then we all ended up hanging out when we were playing in Nashville on the Queens tour. Out of the blue a couple years later we got a call about doing a record. When we got down there it was a great fit right off the bat. Like when you meet cousins you didn't even know you have or something and you just hit it off. Everybody got along really great and they just treated us really well. I don't know what to say about the Coachella - Palm Springs thing....From what I remember it was really fun though.
          You’ve spent some time recently playing in Nashville- have you started to notice any of that ‘Nashville influence’ in your music?
          JB: I'm not really sure about what that "Nashville influence is" - I mean country music is great and it's definitely something that's influenced us over the years but so much of what I hear in Nashville now is like this weird hybrid of rock, pop and rap with maybe some pedal steel or a southern accent thrown in just for good measure. So in that regard, no I don't think so. Though at the same time it's hard not be influenced in one way or another when you hear something no matter what it is. But it's not like we were in Nashville so all of the sudden we started copping things from George Jones records - we've always done that anyway.
          KO: Plus it's not like we've really spent that much time down there anyway. Just a few days or a weekend here and there. Obviously touring and playing around makes you tighter as a band so I guess in that way it does change you but not into a bunch of Nashville session guys.
          For someone who has never heard your band, describe your sound.
          KO: Like a car crash only everyone comes out a better person.
          JB: Uh - I always say four corny white dudes who play too loud and you do with that what you will. Somebody said "biker-soul" once. We all thought that was pretty funny. 
          Jack & Kyle answer our Top Five WaxO’s Gotta Know Questions
          1) First vinyl memory?
          KO: Finding my dad's records in the basement of our house. It was a lot of Kris Kristofferson and Hall and Oates.
          JB: Not totally sure. I think it was in the 7th grade I walked the 30 minutes from school to the closest record store to get these albums because they hadn't been re-released on CD or whatever. It was this tiny little place but who knows I could just be making this all up. I'm really only guessing because that was around the time that I made the switch over to actual records.
          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment?
          KO: Culture "International Herb"
          JB: I guess it depends on the weather and the time of day. But I can always listen to Ray Charles, early Louis Armstrong too. Shit like that. I like to listen to "Prisoner of Love" by James Brown a lot and "Cosa Nuestra" by Willie Colon and Hector Lavoe if it's nice outside.
          3) What was the last album you added to your collection?
          JB: I have no idea. I try to listen to at least one new thing a day so it's kind of hard to keep track. "Master Musician of India" by Ustad Ali Akbar Khan is on the top of my pile from today.
          KO: Mine was "Let It Be"
          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year?
          JB: Who can keep track? There's so much new music now and so much of it is only readily available on somebody's website or something that it's really impossible to remember everything. Prince's new band 3rd Eye Girl is fucking great. I've really been digging on that stuff as it's becoming available. But then like I'm saying there's so much music out there. There are things that may still be escaping the public at large - like our old buddy Oliver Ignatius has been doing some great things with his band, Ghost Pal and he's also been recording some great music by other people at his studio MCFK in Brooklyn. Oh also the new Friend Roulette album is pretty awesome....
          KO: "20/20" by Justin Timberlake has been pretty cool to take in.
          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year?
          JB: Definitely really excited to hear more from Prince and 3rd Eye Girl. Also our good friend Elvis Perkins is finally putting out a new album and I can't wait for that. It''s gonna be some really great shit.
          KO: Hanne Huckleberg from Norway.
          Thanks so much to Jack & Kyle for participating in this Q&A!
          The Dough Rollers will be performing at SXSW on March 15th at the Third Man Records Showcase at The Museum of Human Achievement & March 16th at the 'See Something Say Something Showcase' at Rusty's. 

          The Low Down with Low Cut Connie's Adam Weiner February 25 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          What happens when Birmingham, England meets NEW England? Low Cut Connie

          A critically acclaimed but perhaps not (yet) so well known band composed of Adam Weiner, Dan Finnemore, James Everhart, Will Donnelly, and Roger Holcombe. Their toe-tapping, piano-thumping sound is one you NEED to be listening to on the regular.

          Their debut album ‘Get Out the Lotion’ was named by NPR as one of the best 10 albums of 2011. Their sophomore follow up ‘Call Me Sylvia’ was released in shortly after and from that, their single "Boozophilia" was rated one of Rolling Stone magazine's top 50 of 2012.

          They're kind of like every New Jersey rock & roller you can name meets Jerry Lee Lewis and they all get drunk with Dick Dale. Don’t try to define it! Just get down with it and have a good time. If you aren’t punch drunk with appreciation after a set with these boys, better check your pulse.


          In a (misguided?) attempt to garner a few more audience members for the band’s upcoming SXSW showcases, main piano whacker Adam Weiner kindly answers my questions in this informal sit down~

          I know you’ve played Austin before but is this your first time to play at SXSW? What showcases/ venues can we expect to see you at?

          This is Low Cut Connie's first SXSW appearance...we've got three shows confirmed and I'm bribing various individuals to lock down some more.  We're also throwing our own party on the last day at Carousel Lounge, which is a circus themed lesbian trucker shitkicker bar in East Austin.  It's always quite a scene in there.

          Tues March 11, 1am - Headhunters Patio, official SXSW showcase

          Sat March 15, 3pm - HI Austin Backyard Bash, 2200 S. Lakeshore Blvd.

          Sun March 16, 1pm - the Gutbucket Brunch @ the Carousel Lounge

          It’s my understanding you’ll be releasing your third album later this year. Both of your previous albums (Get Out the Lotion and Call Me Sylvia) were (pardon the pun) self-released. Will this album be as well?

          The rumors are true, we just finished our new record and it's a real killer.  Sexy swampy soulful balls-out rock n roll.  I am in the middle of a long process of begging, pleading, grovelling and prostitution to get the record released this year on any prominent label that is flush with money, power, and catered lunches.  We'll see how it plays out. 

          Last year saw a limited single issued via Grimtale Records featuring 2 songs from your NPR World Café show (Boozophilia & Brand New Cadillac). How did that come about? How was it to see that record sale play out to primarily a collectors market?

          We had such a blast doing the World Café show...we went in there with our shitty gear and turned their gorgeous pristine museum-like studio into Jimmy's Chicken Shack on a Saturday night.  They were very gracious with us and let us do our thing.  It turned out great and so when Grimtale asked to do something with us, we decided to release a taste of the session.  It's fun releasing something for a niche collectors market because they have this little orgiastic incestuous community that has been very supportive.

          You recently posted a Goodfellas-inspired video for ‘Jump Into the Fire’ which is featured on a tribute album to Harry Nilsson. What was it like to be involved in that project?

          We've always been Nilsson fans, he was a phenomenal singer, writer and ball-buster of the highest order.  When they asked us to give them something for the tribute record, it was an easy Goodfellas is our favorite movie, and they use "Jump Into the Fire" so prominently in the coke bust scene.  Shooting the video was essentially just allowing our movie-making pals to follow us as we performed in various hepatitis-infected establishments in the Philadelphia area.  Just another day in Low Cut Connie.  

          I’ve read you were friends first and became band mates later. Your sound comes across to me as very ‘party rock’, just some guys looking to have a good time. I’m curious to know what (if any) regional Jersey/Philly artists have served as inspiration for the music you’re making?

          The rumors of Dan Finnemore and I being friends have been greatly exaggerated.  We simply tolerate each other, occasional speaking to each other...we continue on simply because the money is so good.  Take that message to heart - being in a band is a great and easy way to make a living in modern America if you are a complete degenerate and have no family or moral scruples. 

          As far as regional Jersey / Philly artists that have inspired us...there isn't time to list them all, but I'd like to shout out to a local Philly legend, Jerry Blavat, aka the Geator with the Heator.  He's a famous DJ, radio personality, dancer, and raconteur in Philly who is still rockin at age 73 and has been a huge supporter and inspiration to Low Cut Connie.  

          You’ve had a ton of critical acclaim, but you’ve also developed a strong crowd following. In building a loyal fan base, how important is their word-of-mouth and do you think social networking has helped to increase your popularity?

          I wasn't aware that anyone actually liked us.  We pay audience members five dollars each to look like they are having a good time.  It makes us feel good about ourselves during hard times.  Beyond this though, whatever popularity we got is almost certainly from people telling other people that our show is where it's at.  We may not be the most gorgeous young well-oiled shiny guys around, but we give you our all when you come to see us.  

          I’ve heard you sometimes tell your audiences ‘Let’s get weird’ and that you put on some pretty ferociously rocking shows. Based on your past experience in Austin, a town reputed for ‘keeping it weird’, how crazy do you expect things will get at SX? 

          Austin crowds can be pretty weird...good-weird, that is.  I expect various improvisations, maneuvers, and impregnations during our shows.

          Thanks so much to Adam for participating in this Q&A! Check them out at SXSW or be kicking yourself in about six months. 

           Adam's answers to our Top Five WaxO’s Gotta Know questions

          1) First vinyl memory? 

          Sesame Street Fever.  Still have it.  A classic.

          2) What is an album you regularly spin for your own enjoyment? 

          James Brown Live at the Apollo....that is how you get it done. 

          3) What was the last album you added to your collection? 

          Doug Kershaw "Spanish Moss" ...lots of Cajun songs about fishing and booze.

          4) What was your favorite album or new artist from last year? 

          The Charles Bradley record from last year is killer.  On our new album we worked with Thomas Brenneck who produces the Charles Bradley stuff and absolutely kills it with the sounds. 

          5) What artists are you looking forward to hearing more of this coming year? 

          Our good friends Tune-Yards have a new album coming out (and make a guest appearance on ours!).  I'm dreaming that Little Richard will call me this year and ask us to do something this year with him, so that's what I'd like to hear. 

          SXSW 101- A Newbies Guide to SXSW February 11 2014, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          A month from now I will be attending one of my most favorite festivals on earth, South by Southwest.

          The anticipation generally sets in about the time I get on the plane to leave the previous years film & music festival based in Austin, TX, so you could say 'it's been a long time coming'. Last year's festival saw over 20,000 attendees and over 2,000 musical showcases. Although it's really too early to know exactly what to expect from this years festival, three rounds of musician (all I really care about) related announcements have already been released.

          I've started to piece together my 'Must See' list and here's how it's shaping up so far...

          Pujol!, Blondie, Gary Numan, The Strypes,  BP Fallon & The Bandits, The Ghost Wolves, Low Cut Connie, Diarrhea Planet, Black Lips, Black Milk, Those Darlins, Sturgill Simpson, Shakey Graves, Kelly Stoltz, Moon Taxi, Luke Winslow King, Natural Child, Deap Valley, and Warm Soda.

          Also the interview with Neil Young

          Wow. It's going to be amazing. 

          And that's just the first day!

          So, how do you train for an event of this magnitude you might be asking yourself.

          1) Lots of walking. Be prepared for a ton of foot work trekking across town unless you are OK with shelling out beau coup bucks to the pedi cab drivers. Also, if you are staying at a hotel in an outlying area, it's advantageous to purchase a Shuttle pass. Available in single, five and nine-day increments, it's well worth the investment and, in my opinion, is way better than having a rental car and getting a cab is next to impossible. So why try?

          2)  Study a map of the central downtown area where the festival occurs, especially if you haven't been there before.

          Most events are centered between the Convention Center and 6th Avenue, west of I-35. However, in recent years, showcases have begun expanding further east of I-35 and south of the river (primarily on South Congress Avenue). Of course a smartphone is super-handy (and pretty essential) to have whilst down there- not only for checking last minute schedule updates, but for locating yourself and the venues you are trying to find. Showcases are added and schedules are changing until the fat lady is singing and if you're offline, you're probably missing out.

          3) If you've purchased an official SXSW badge, create your SXSW social account and start flagging events you're interested in. Things move quickly while you're down there and it's helpful to have several options in mind in case you aren't where you thought you'd be when the time arrives. Also be sure to register online for ticket lotteries to the most exclusive showcases. Winners are generally announced 24 hours prior to events and both my husband & I have been fortunate to win in the past.

          4) Register with DO512,  and keep up with a ton of Official and Unofficial SXSW events. Unofficial SXSW is almost as extensive as the festival itself, and if you can't afford an official badge there's always music to be found. Often a cover charge and a wait in line can get you into some exclusive showcases (though certainly not all). Waterloo Records is a great place to catch live music and showcases free of charge (plus, cool vinyl, can't beat that!) They often times host autograph signings during the festival, too.

          5) We've been to Austin a few times now and have a few favorite restaurants, but I always check restaurant guides (Diners, Drive In's and Dives is one of my fave's) to have an idea of good, accessible and relatively inexpensive places to try while we're there. I also pack snacks to have in our back pack and our hotel room because you can't be guaranteed a Taco Bell at three in the morning.

          6) If you get completely burnt out and need to escape the fest for a bit, Austin is a super cool town with lots of fun things to do and see. Home to the State Capitol building, the University of Texas, a bridge full of bats and an abundance of art and culture, there's something for everyone.

          7) Know that the Convention Center has restrooms open to the public (non-badge holders this means you).

          8) If you're thinking about saving some airfare or beating the crowd by skipping town on Saturday- FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DON'T DO IT! Some of the best things happen on the climactic Saturday nights. It may seem like a good idea at the time, but you'll regret it later.

          9) Last but not least, as best you can, prepare to have your mind blown. If there's one thing I know it's that no SX is the same and there's no telling what could happen any given year.

          A Wax-O-Holics 'What's Up?' for 2014 January 07 2014, 2 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          2014 is shaping up to bring many exciting things from the Wax-O-Holics front. From merch, to vinyl storage and display solutions, to... what's that? VINYL you say? what????? yup. fundraising in progress y'all! signed artists ready to go!

          Until then, our 'Party Foul' regular edition GITD slipmats (limited to 30) will start shipping this week. This was a fun project for us (OK, mainly Boat & JM) to work on and we look forward to bringing more killer designs to our webstore. A few of Painted Vessel's 'Rough Idea' sketches are also still available. Limited to 20, signed and numbered, and printed on fancy-ass card stock by none other than Nicholas 'Boat' Lynch himself, I'd get one while you can. I mean, have you seen Boat's work? (ie slipmat)

          Juice will soon have a few variant Mighty Squatch Boxes up for grabs. Hand-crafted by the man (or Squatch) himself, available with or without a Squatch Notch (ya know, for when you're posting in What's Spinning!) these Limited Edition Squatch Boxes will be custom painted by a local Seattle graffiti artist.

          Personally, I am still hard at work prepping The Original Display & Play for market. I've had a few set backs but this idea is just too good to not be a real thing! ('I just want these things to exist'). So once again, please stay tuned!

          To keep up with our antics, follow us on facebook! You can also find us each at our respective homes on twitter/ instagram (SouthernTracksMedia/ STMPress, NicholasBOATLynch/ Painted Vessel, and DeadWeather Denver) and facebook Broke, Or Made Better.

          Thanks again for all of your support!

          Brendan Benson's 'You Were Right' proves he's 'getting better all the time' December 04 2013, 0 Comments

          by DeadWeatherDenver

          Some of you may remember how heartily I expounded on Brendan Benson’s last album release for ‘What Kind of World’. (For those that don’t, my review can be found here) It debuted on April 23, 2012, the same day as Jack White’s ‘Blunderbuss’. What a face off! Who would win? Well, obviously Jack did. In album sales, at least. A long-time Raconteurs FAN-atic, I’ll admit I was a bit late getting on the Brendan boat. But since finding him and discovering his treasure trove of tunes, I have to say, I’ve been continually amazed at the ways in which Mr. White’s fellow Raconteur is so constantly overlooked as a musician and song-writer. With the release of ‘You Were Right’, perhaps some of that tide is starting to turn.

          Already garnering critical acclaim, I was super-excited to pick up my own copy on Black Friday RSD 2013- a full two weeks ahead of the official cd and digital release date of December 10th. Produced by his own Readymade label and distributed by Thirty Tigers, the LP is a 180-gram standard black vinyl gatefold. It includes an 8-page insert with photos and a sentence or two from Brendan about the inspiration behind each song. The Black Friday RSD version also includes a limited poster.

          Instantly a favorite here in my house, this LP is a bit less ‘Power Pop’ than his previous works. A few tracks from his previous solo release 'My Old Familiar Friend' have made reappearances on this album but overall I would say 'You Were Right' illustrates a perhaps more somber Benson. I’ve tried to capture my initial thoughts for some of you that may be ‘On the Fence’ about purchasing it...

          It’s Your Choice- a powerful, almost Irish-sounding intro (which I later learned via the book included with the LP may have been inspired by the countryside he was traveling through at the time of writing it) traditional Brendan style- catchy melody, smart lyrics- a well-rounded choice for opening out the album

          Rejuvenate Me- uptempo guitar intro- lyrical assistance from fellow Readymade artist, Young Hines. Super catchy, Raconteurs fans will appreciate this one for sure

          As of Tonight- love the bass-y intro. classic Benson production and styling. A true choral earworm, you will find yourself with this refraining in your head

          Diamond- the second single from this album, which was actually released in April for RSD 2013, a unique way of promoting an album prior to its release which has since been replicated by the Dead Weather for their upcoming album expected in 2105. LOVE the guitar intro on this. Super catchy. and do I detect a hint of 'screwdriver' action?

          Long Term Goal- at first listen seems to be written to a young artist trying to make it in the music industry. Via the LP booklet, apparently it’s a song Brendan wrote about himself in his own early days in the business. A heartfelt tune to be sure

          I Don’t Want to See You Anymore- LOVE LOVE LOVE this song, all the way around. Hammond organ! A welcome Greenhornes-y intro, total r&b feel, soulful lyrics Brendan totally belts out- co-written with the lovely Ashley Monroe- absolutely my favorite on this LP

          I'll Never Tell- some of that ‘Pretty Babies’ feel followed by Jamaican flavor. Why does Cory Chisel come to mind? But then it totally breaks into a riff-filled rockin’ tune… and then back to the islands… holy moly this song is awesome! That must be the amazing Brad Pemberton on drums… Such a twisted love song- nice work

          Swallow You Whole- wow. So many thoughts on this particular song. So Beatles. Written after a long Raconteurs session. In Jack White’s house. I’ll leave it at that

          She’s Trying to Poison Me- Brendan tends to have one or two songs per album relating a dysfunctional woman story, this that song

          Purely Automatic- so Beatles! If you enjoyed the first dysfunctional woman song on the album, here’s the other twisted tune

          New World of Wisdom- yes! More Hammond! Sooooooo beautifully written, it was interesting to learn the manner in which it came about (for that story, you’ll have to buy your own copy of the album and read the literature provided). Classic Benson lyrical stylings, a relatable accounting of how friendships can fall apart. I love the circus-y organ vibe, right up my alley

          Oh My Love- a somewhat minstrel feel, so McCartney- if you don’t love this song something is wrong with you

          Three bonus tracks come with the full Digital Download, also included with the vinyl purchase. On The Fritz, Swimming (the first single of the album released in January 2013 but doesn’t actually appear on the vinyl edition) and Red White & Blues (a single that debuted for the 4th of July).