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"Close your eyes, breathe slow, and we'll begin..." - from "The Pan Within" written by Mike Scott and recorded by his band, The Waterboys from their album This is the Sea.
Last night I took the Blackstone Bus to Music City Roots at the Factory in Franklin. I think the bus is one of this town's best kept secrets. Every Wednesday, the bus departs from The 5 Spot in East Nashville makes a stop at Soulshine Pizza in Midtown and then makes its way down I65 to Franklin.
Reasons it is such a cool, awesome deal: 1. The ride is free. You pay your (usually $10) Roots ticket, select the Blackstone Bus option. 2. They serve samples of different varieties of Blackstone Beer (the longest currently operating local brewery). 3 You get some free hors d'oeuvres courtesy of Monnells. 4. There is usually awesome live music on the bus and 5. You don't have to drive.
About #4 - the scheduled music performer was under the weather, but because Nashville - it turned out that The Worry Dolls were on board. The Worry Dolls are recent transplants from London. I had seen them at a showcase during Americana, and they graced us with some songs on the bus. I nice treat to be sure.
This weeks Music City Roots was pretty eclectic. Host Jim Lauderdale opened the show with a song from his new album - which I now really want to check out. A bluegrass band from Italy played one song. I really dug them a bunch - they are called La Terza Classe. The Orphan Brigade played next, they are a really interesting group of experienced players with a pretty fascinating story. They completed their current album in Kentucky at what is called the Most Haunted House in America. I really liked their music which is kind of moody roots music - I guess. LynnMarie was next with her polka band. They won me over by opening their set with a cover of The Who's "Squeezebox" and a song written about LynnMarie's son who has Down's Syndrome. The latter song really spoke to me.
Amy Black was up next - backed by some of the players who joined her when I saw her CD Release show at The Bluebird Café and supplemented by a horn section and noted Nashville bassist Hags Haggerty. They sounded fantastic.
Ted Drozdowski's Scissormen played the final set of the night and did what they do best - bringing the authentically original take on psychedelic North Mississippi blues music. And for those who read yesterday's post - no, the MCR stage could not contain Ted Drozdowski. Drozdowski is a phenomenal guitar player and his band provide some amazing support.
The closing Music City Jam featured a pretty awesome version of a song Muddy Waters recorded called "Rollin' and Tumblin'". It was amazing to hear the different takes from everyone on stage.
On to the shuffle:
"The Pan Within" by The Waterboys
Celtic spirituality and soaring, "Big Music"... another track from This is the Sea - which was The Waterboys third album - released in 1985 (30 years ago).
"Enough" by The Regrets
The first of three songs in the shuffle by bands associated with Mama Coco's Funky Kitchen. A pretty "in your face" kind of punk song - hint: guys, you do not want to mess with this woman! This is on the latest Mama Coco's sampler. I had to do some pretty heavy duty research, but I managed to find a video made by some of the members of The Regrets."Bullets and Arrows" by The Colored Parade
Andrew Atkins has performed in several different combination covering a pretty wide spectrum of styles and genres with one thing in common - well-written song with a hooky melodhy.
"Paper Planes" by Ilana J
Another from Free Falling from the Ground Up. Illana J plays really infectious and original pop music. She has a new single called "Angel" which is being sold to benefit research to find a cure for Angelman Syndrome.
"The Witches Song" by Longshot Nelson and the Disjoints
Off the latest Feel Bad for You mixtape - comes this seasonally appropriate song from a band who seems to have a bunch of songs which are appropriate for this time of year. They play Scottish folk music, and this was my first listen, and I want to hear more.
"Fuck Ben's Party" by The Dregs
Another from the latest Mama Coco's Funky Kitchen sampler. We've featured music by The Dregs before and probably will again. The band includes bassist Sam Braverman who we first heard with his band Logan X.
"Nevermind" by James Roquemore
Another listen to James Roquemore's debut release, The First. You may recall that I saw James open Pat Kinsley's album release show at the Basement. Great songs, great voice.
"Atlas" by Man Named Pearl
Another track from Quietus Make - the new album by Jesse Turits and his first under this new moniker also our third Mama Coco's associated band in today's shuffle. This album has rapidly become a current favorite of mine.
"Will Carry On" by Elephant Revival
We close out the day with an awesome song - another from Sands of Now - the new live CD/DVD by the Colorado experimental folk/Americana band.