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Last night was a wonderful reminder of the depth and width of the musical offerings that this city has to offer. Not even to mention the several awesome shows that I was able to attend. It began with week one of the Fats Kaplin and Friends. Kaplin is an incredible multi-instrumentalist who has worked with everyone from Jack White and Beck to Nanci Griffith and Trisha Yearwood. He also has several solo albums and albums with his wife - the amazing vocalist Kristi Rose (who sang several songs last night). The show was filled with magic tricks, good humor, and fantastic music. The residency will continue throughout March (with the exception of March 17), and I highly recommend it if you are in Nashville on one of those Thursdays.
You may recall, I posted several songs some time ago by Bashful Hips. It is very original music (think alternative hip hop as a jumping off point). Bashful Hips has a brand new CD called After I Died, I've Never Felt So Alive, and he celebrated the release with a diverse and spirited show at The End. Experimental, progressive rock band Work opened the night, Ted C. Fox played next with a sound that pretty awesomely melded bluegrass with more experimental post-rock elements, Bashful Hips was next delivering his new album song by song. Backed by Nathan Conrad of Spoken Nerd on bass and spieling over a pre-recorded track, Bashful Hips songs are complex and emotional and awesome. Expect to hear songs from the album in the shuffle soon. Spoken Nerd closed the night. This is unabashedly hip-hop music featuring a live band and pre-ordered music. I have a great respect for good hip-hop music - even if I admit to not knowing a lot about it. This was really good and when joined by Nashville rapper KidDead, the rapid fire word play was impressive.
It felt good to step out of my comfort zone (both location and musical styles), and I really had a blast.
Today's themed shuffle is the original themed shuffle "Featured Friday". Let's do it!
"Delta Wave" by Mind the Journey
Mind the Journey is the project of Bostonian Spencer Sabo. The new album was produced in Sabo's basement and is called Color in the Gray Machine. It is dreamy, heady stuff, and I dig it. A cool way to begin the morning.
"I Shall Prevail" by Bob Margolin
Blues legend "Steady Rollin'" Bob Margolin is up next with another track from his album My Road. This outstanding blues music without any unnecessary hyphens or frills.
"Love Cures" by Amelia White
We started the week with the title track from Amelia White's Home Sweet Hotel album, and we wrap up the week with another track. I have long said music heals, and I do believe love can cure. Amelia White is a bright light in the East Nashville music community.
"City Lights" by All the King's Men
All the King's Men are a Manchester band who released their EP Making My Escape back in November. This is classic sounding rock with a modern edge to it. This track was catchy and powerful, and a ton of fun.
"Like a Stone" by Andrew Adkins
One of my favorite Nashville songwriters (and "Earie" award winner) Andrew Adkins has been releasing music under a variety of band/project names. For his latest album, Glass Castles, he goes back to his own name and has a made an outstanding record. The music here manages to defy expectations (even though the diversity of his recent projects have made it difficult to have expectations). I am looking forward to next Wednesday's (March 9) show at The Country which will feature Adkins, his "Earie" co-winner Joe Nolan, Jon Byrd, Tim Carroll, and Tommy Womack in what promises to be a "not-to-be-missed" round.
"Eyes Awaken" by The Jackals
Another great track from People by Scottish cosmic rock and roll band, The Jackals. So good!
"95" by Gavin Chappell-Bates
And we close out with some pretty cool anthemic indie rock music from We Are Ones by UK singer-songwriter Gavin Chappell-Bates. Chappell-Bates is highly influenced by Manic Street Preachers (and that is never a bad thing). "95" looks back fondly on a simpler time, is filled with unbridled emotional honesty, and manages to navigate effectively away from nostalgia. Expect to hear more from this album here...