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First of all, I need to offer all the kind words and encouragements for my recent run of commentary. Believe me when I say this is something I would rather not do. But, I feel it is something I must do. I have tried my best to distinguish partisan differences which will always exist and always be up for debate from the far more serious threat to our nation and our way of life. The problem, as I see it, is that the more outrageous the words and actions of the current administration get and the more deafening the silence from many of the leaders of the Republican Party (save for a few brave voices), the more difficult it is to do. It is hard to unwind abuses of power, overt racism, xenophobia, homophobia, and other forms of bigotry from the policies that arise out of those evils. More to the point, when party leaders look past or ignore fascist words and actions for the sake of their agenda - it is hard to not harden your heart to that agenda - which may or may not reflect those despicable characteristics. We are watching and we are speaking out. Customs agents asking passengers on a domestic airline to "show their papers". State leaders voting to effectively make political dissent illegal, Executive branch officials asking the intelligence community to discredit the free press and to produce intelligence reports that support their agenda. An administration that has made up three non-existent terrorist attacks and yet calls America's major media organizations "enemies of the people" and purveyors of "Fake News" which seems to be defined as any news that does not support the agenda of that administration.
So, yeah, I don't see myself stopping writing these relatively brief commentaries any time soon - although I really wish my reasons for doing it would go away and soon.
I had such a good time last night at the 10th Anniversary celebration for Jon Byrd's album Byrd's Auto Parts. The show - at the Family Wash - featured many of the players on that album. The second set featured guest spots from David Raines, Amelia White, and Kevin Gordon. The night was a reminder of how great a music town we have in Nashville.
All right - well it is Friday and right now it is about 78 degrees on February 24 in Nashville. On Friday, we go back to our "New Music" playlist and we hit shuffle and see what happens. Here is what happened when I did that this morning....
"Say Never" by The Transcendents
One of the reasons I love writing Ear to the Ground is the incredible diversity of music that comes to me - that I otherwise might not hear. The other thing are the really awesome people who I get to interact with. Thanks to the magic of the world wide web, sometimes those people are over 8,000 miles away and a day ahead. The Transcendents are from Christchurch, New Zealand and they make really cool music that manages to be both alien and familiar - not an easy feat. I see from Facebook that they have been experiencing some massive wildfires in their vicinity - so we send them good vibes. That is opposed to the massive dumpster fire we are experiencing here in the US.
"Misanthrope" by A Crash Republic
Next up we have some pissy pop punk sounds from Milton, Massachusetts. I really like this band. These two opening songs were good to get me going on a sluggish Friday morning.
"Captain Overboard" by Adam Kurtz
Better known as singer/guitar guy from Buck n' Stuff and as steel player extraordinaire for many great artists - Adam Kurtz is also a singer-songwriter. A while back, he released an EP of Sea Shanties. As we wait for recorded music from Buck n' Stuff - we will enjoy these shanties about the sea. The video is for a different song on the EP, but it is well worth the price of admission. Which is free.
"Clam Bake City" by David Newbould
David Newbould has new music coming later this year. Here we have our last featured song from his last EP - The Devil Is His Name. This is one of favorite tracks - and you may have heard a few weeks back on Double Shot.
"Another Girl, Another Planet" by The Coal Porters
From their latest album, No. 6, The Coal Porters are up with their rendition of the 1978 release by The Only Ones. The song has been covered by several different bands and artists. I was most familiar with the Replacements version. The Coal Porters definitely make it all their own here.
"Keep On Goin'" by Tim Carroll
It's been a Tim Carroll kind of week here at E2TG. Always a good thing. Another from his It's All Politics release. I always think he should end his set with this song. "We Gonna Keep On Goin'" and then stop. Okay, I'm weird. If you are able, I highly recommend taking in Tim Carroll's Rock n Roll Happy Hour which goes down tonight and every Friday at The 5 Spot. No cover, 1/2 price drinks, and great rock n roll. It cannot be topped.
"Back to the Beginning Pt. 2" by Marla Mase
As you look around at the world and look back at history, it is easy to wonder if this human "experiment" should just be scrapped. Anyway, that is my take away from this song from Miracles: Lost and Found by E2TG Favorite Marla Mase.
"Prince of the Appletowns" by Darryl Purpose
Have I mentioned how much I love Darryl Purposes songs and THAT VOICE. Probably, but it's worth repeating. I just lose myself as I listen to him sing.
"Your Dreams" by Jon Magnusson
We previously played Jon Magnusson - a professional social worker and hobby musician from Sweden - a while back. Well, he has a new single, and I am happy to present it today. This is a solid song, and I hope you will check it out. It is a powerful song about struggle (all kinds) and timely and important.