Monday, April 23, 2018

Magnolia Roads American Roots Hoedown III - Part 1 (Ben Sparaco)

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The good folks at Magnolia Roads are putting on their 3rd Annual American Roots Hoedown this coming weekend in Nashville.  The two nights of music are being held at two of my favorite venues and features some of my favorite artists, so it seemed a good fit for me to tell you a bit about this event and the people playing.  All this week, I will be highlighting a different artist with some information and a short interview.

Let's begin:

Magnolia Roads presents the third annual American Roots Hoedown. A showcase of the Magnolia Roads family of artists and friends. Twelve bands over two nights at two of Nashville's hippest live music venues. Returning for the third year are Mike Younger, Rich Mahan, and the Jason Daniels Band. New this year are Bonnie Blue, Ben Sparaco & The New Effect, Arkansas Dave, Don Gallardo, Boo Ray, Allen Thompson, Daniel Lawrence Walker, The Traveling One, Taylor Kropp and James Scott Bullard.

American Roots Hoedown III Pre-Party
6pm-2am Friday, April 27, 2018
Dee’s Country Cocktail Lounge, 102 E. Palestine Ave., Madison, TN 37115
Lineup: Taylor Kropp, Boo Ray, Allen Thompson, James Scott Bullard,
The Traveling Ones, and Daniel Lawrence Walker

American Roots Hoedown III Pre-Party 4/27 Facebook event:
5:30 Daniel Lawrence Walker (Nashville, TN)
7:15 The Traveling Ones (band - Nashville, TN)
7:55 Allen Thompson (solo - Nashville, TN)
8:45 James Scott Bullard (solo - Mullins, SC)
9:45 Taylor Kropp (band) Nashville, TN)
10:45 Boo Ray (band - Nashville, TN)
11:45 Don Gallardo (band - Nashville, TN)

American Roots Hoedown III 
6pm -2am Saturday, April 28, 2018
The 5 Spot, 1006 Forrest Ave., Nashville, TN 37206
Lineup: Bonnie Blue, Ben Sparaco & The New Effect, Mike Younger,
Rich Mahan, Jason Daniels Band, and Arkansas Dave

American Roots Hoedown III 4/28 Facebook event
6 Arkansas Dave (Austin)
7 Jason Daniels Band (Jackson, MS)
8:05 Rich Mahan (Nashville)
9:20 Mike Younger (Nashville)
10:25 Ben Sparaco and The New Effect (Nashville)
11:40 Bonnie Blue (Jacksonville, FL)
12:45 All-star super jam*

To start things off, we are going to present some information about Ben Sparaco and the New Effect who will be playing Satursday night at The 5 Spot in East Nashville.

Ben Sparaco and The New Effect (Nashville, TN) Blends elements of Americana, Blues, Folk, Funk and Rock with jazz-inspired improvisation drawing on inspirations ranging from the Derek Trucks Band to the Grateful Dead to Bob Dylan to John Coltrane. Following up on Ben’s 2017 solo debut album, “Wooden,” the group's upcoming self-titled album will be released June 8.,

Below is an interview with Ben Sparaco talking about his music and this week's show:

1) What is the most personal song you have? What makes it so personal?
My song “Soul Miner” is probably the most personal to me because it’s about the struggles of getting through to somebody that was close to me and getting them to open up.

2) Favorite topic to write about? Why? 
I generally like to write stories that may or may not be loosely based on my own life. I think writing using characters and fictional scenarios helps to make the songs less specific and makes it easier for people to connect with them in different ways. It also gives me the ability to kind of create another world in our songs.

3) Craziest thing that's ever happened while on stage (issues, crazy fans, losing power, etc.?)
When I was touring with Butch Trucks (founding member and drummer of the Allman Brothers Band) I turned around during “Mountain Jam” to see him smiling bigger than I’ve ever seen. That was surreal.

4) Who are your musical influences? Why?
Jerry Garcia, Derek Trucks, John Coltrane, Bob Dylan, and David Byrne. They all went against the grain and carved their own path.

5) First album you ever bought?
Probably American Idiot by Green Day or Ocean Avenue by Yellowcard.

6) First live concert you ever attended?
Van Halen and Ziggy Marley, 2008.

7) Are you a "superfan" of any band?
I grew up as an Allman Brothers superfan and eventually because a superfan of the Grateful Dead. I wouldn’t consider myself a current “superfan” of anybody.

8) What is the most valuable lesson you've learned as a musicion? Who taught it to you?
It’s all about your intention, no matter what you play. Thank you Colonel Bruce Hampton.

9) If you had to bring two albums with you to listen to for the rest of your life--what would they be?
A Love Supreme by John Coltrane and The Times They Are A-Changing by Bob Dylan.

10) What's your dream venue to play?
Red Rocks or the Beacon Theatre.

11) What’s your favorite food on the road? (Why?)
I pound back Clif bars all the time on the road because they’re cheap, fill you up, and have quality ingredients! We don’t always have time for a full meal.

12) Why didn’t you become a banker? Or, if you weren’t a musician what would you be? 

13) Bonus?! What makes you most excited about playing the MagRds American Roots III weekend shows?
Lots of friends on the lineup and a lot of opportunities to play with different people.

Tomorrow:  Part II with an E2TG favorite Don Gallardo!

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