Rita & Lolita





Rita: June was a great month for popular musicians to be born. Let’s see, off the top of my head, Paul McCartney 6/18, Jeff Beck 6/24, Brian Wilson 6/20, Ray Davies 6/21, Harry Nilsson 6/15, Todd Rundgren 6/22, Prince 6/7, Gary U.S. Bonds 6/6, Les Paul 6/9, Cyndi Lauper 6/22, Mick Fleetwood 6/24, Carly Simon 6/25, and Mick Jones 6/26. Lolita: You left out that John Lennon met Paul McCartney on 6/15. Rita: But I was just listing birthdays. Lolita: See, I do know a lot that you don’t. Rita: Moving on—in this online issue we have DUKE ROBILLARD, JOHN POWHIDA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, CD reviews, Live reviews, the Big Shot (Michael Thomas Doyle), and a Book review. In the print issue you’ll also find stories on STEPH BARRAK, and DAVINA YANNETTY, along with other print features—Pet of the Month, Guitar Boot Camp, a One Minute Quiz, and the popular Rock School comic strip.


Rita: I’m always open to learning something new, so let’s find out what products our musician friends would be willing to put their name on. Michael, slow down there… What product would you like to endorse? MICHAEL THOMAS DOYLE (Chelsea Berry Band/ Gary Backstrom Band/ Cape Ann Jazz Connect): Endorsements like Gibson, Pearl drums, and Hammond organs would be really really cool, but, I really think I want a Moxie endorsement before anything. I mean, c’mon, have you ever cracked open a can of Moxie and had a bad day?! It’s like the elixir of the universe! I would go even as far as having a full Moxie drum kit! Or Moxie guitar…. Or even Moxie undergarments! I guess I just really love Moxie. *** KENNY CHAMBERS (x-Moving Targets): Dr. Bragg’s organic raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar. Two tablespoons a day in a glass of distilled water allows me to live a hard-scrabble lifestyle without without any negative effects. *** RICK BERLIN (Nickel & Dime Band): Miller Lite. I know. shit beer. not remotely hip like ’Gansett or PBRr. but it’s what I drink. Arrives on the bar as soon as I show up at the Brendan Behan. I even have a T-shirt. endorsement: get a buzz on, piss it out, no hangover, on the cheap.  It’s a great rehearsal beer. Nickel & Dime Band’s rehearsal beer. I dig the deep blue can cold in the hand. *** JIM COUNTRYMAN (Erin Harpe & the Delta Swingers/ Lovewhip): The one mass-produced product that has kept on giving since the day I bought it for $279, the Squire Vintage Modified Precision Bass! It is loud, punchy, warm, and works great for roots music, disco, reggae, rock. Not very good for noodling, great for pounding out the bass foundation! Lolita: Then what am I to do? I only know how to noodle.



Rita: While Lolita noodles her life away, I will deliver the news that guarantees to raise your NEMIQ.  THE REAL KIDS are at it again with RICK HARTE producing a new album at Kissy Pig Studios. CHARLIE LEGER has been brought in to add harp, mandolin, and lap steel. *** ROGER MILLER and LARRY DERSH’s BINARY SYSTEM has become TRINARY SYSTEM with the addition of P. ANDREW WILLIS on bass and vocal. *** EDDIE JAPAN won the 2013 Rumble. Congratulations to the band. The win has set up a fascinating coincidence in the band MC4, where MR. CURT (in Pastiche) won the Rumble 33 years ago at the age of 33, and his bandmate CLARA KEBABIAN, who also plays in the string section of this year’s Rumble winner, is 33 years old!  That has to mean something. *** ANGIE MILLER of Beverly, MA, made it to third place in American Idol. It was amazing to see the support she received from her home town on 5/4/13 with a parade down Cabot Street and a huge (20,000 people) crowd for her free outdoor concert at the high school. American Idol is the new way artists pop into stardom, and it’s good to see that Angie has made it there. Watch for her in the next American Idol Live tour (Agganis Arena, Boston,  8/19). *** In related news with very contrasting music, brother JON MILLER’s hardcore band, EXITING THE FALL, has been handed thousands of fans to check out the band. Let’s see how their popularity reacts. *** SALITA includes members of Waltham and Kicked in the Head. They’re at the Midway on June 8. *** Three members of THE SHODS, KEVIN STEVENSON, SCOTT PITMAN, and DAVE AARONOFF have joined with MATT MURPHY to form THE INVADERS. *** New product from LYRES on Munster Records—join the release party at the Middle East on June 22. *** SOULELUJAH celebrates 10 years of spinning vinyl at Zuzu by expanding their capacity to include the Middle East upstairs starting on June 1. *** SKYJELLY, an alternative noise and art project has a new video called “The 6 is Silent” on YouTube. *** Go see ZOË LEWIS down in Provincetown this summer—you will not forget her. Rita: She is unbelievable. Lolita: I believed her.



Rita: Some people think that Lolita has all the beauty and I have the brains, but our publisher has agreed to run a photo of me (in the print issue) this month to show you that I’m not just smart. And here’s a question that I asked my beautiful friends to answer: Where is your favorite place to hang outside?  RUBY BIRD (Bird Mancini): For a European experience in the heart of the city, Roslindale Village has this beautiful cobblestone courtyard patio where a variety of quaint restaurants and shops converge.  In summer the gardens glow softly with candles and twinkling lights.  You’re there relaxing al fresco, enjoying pasta and a sip of wine from Sophia’s Grotto (think Tuscany), fabulous seafood from Village Sushi, or trendy Euro-American at the Birch Street Bistro, which has live blues on Thursdays.  Bliss on a balmy evening in Boston.  My other favorite (if I’m allowed) is anywhere on Rocky Neck Art Colony, Gloucester… fantastic. *** DIANE YOUNG (TCAN): I am so lucky to live in one of the most beautiful spots in Massachusetts. Within walking distance to my house in South Natick is the historical district that honors the Praying Indians and John Eliot. In the heart of South Natick Center is the Charles River dam, a perfectly peaceful place to relax and have a picnic, feed the ducks, or take a canoe ride. Some people like to fish there as well. Across from the dam is a very quaint coffee house, perfect for getting a great cup of java and taking it to the falls. This is my perfect retreat when the world become too noisy for me and I need an escape. *** MR. CURT (MC4):  I am a homebody, so my fave spot is our screened-in porch overlooking our beautiful tiny garden and foliage. Quiet and restful, I often play guitar there. Also, a perfect place for our precious kitties to stretch out, bask in the sun, or snuggle peacefully in my lap. Meow! *** EDRIE (Walter Sickert & the Army of Broken Toys): My porch, especially on Monday nights when the band is over for rehearsal. We all gather out there during breaks and enjoy the beautiful Dorchester evenings. *** LINDA VIENS (Kingdom of Love): One of my favorite local outdoor spots is Fresh Pond Reservoir. They make a great effort to keep it healthy for wildlife and it’s a lovely pond to walk around. There are tons of birds, hawks, and even an owl mama with babies! *** FRANCIS DIMENNO (Wrong Hero/The Noise): I never cease to be amazed at the selection at the New England Mobile Book Fair in Newton. *** KAREN DeBIASSE (Girl on Top): Casa Romero has a wonderful little outdoor back patio and serves the best authentic Mexican in Boston. Get there when they open to grab a table, as there aren’t many.  Don’t forget the Perfect Margarita straight up with salt.  I also enjoy Latitude 43 in Gloucester for the beautiful harbor view. ***  CHUCK U. ROSINA (WMBR/WMFO): Hanging out outside, in nice weather… well, aside from my back deck, Davis Square comes to mind.  It is close to where I live, and has benches, tree shade, access to ice cream, caffeine, and a variety of food.  It’s a great place to people-watch, and there’s often a street performer, or political rant going on.  Very entertaining. *** KIER BYRNES (Three Day Threshold): The outside patio at Atwoods is one of my favorite places. Lolita: I know that’s because I always hide in the bushes and watch Kier when he’s there. I think he senses me—and likes it.



Rita: This may sound like we’re going into a prison to find some music, but no, last month Lolita and I had our differences that may have led to us missing a couple of details that some people might call mistakes. Lolita: I didn’t make any mistakes.Rita: Well, you were the only one to look over the spelling of LISA HALEY’s name in our Big Shot last month. Lolita: Maybe I was, but, um, I misplaced my eyeglasses, and jeez, I only added an extra Y. I thought of it like a question—like, “Why Lisa, when I could be the Big Shot?” Rita: Maybe she’s more talented than you—and better-looking! Second mistake—does AJ WACHTEL really wear Lemon Pledge? Lolita: Well, according to AJBLIND LEMON always smelled like something much worse than Lemon Pledge, so I thought it was kind of a compliment.  Rita: And finally… why did you leave off the byline on CORIN ASHLEY’s story. Lolita: I guess I thought it would be more intriguing to have no one take credit for it. Rita: Don’t you think you should have asked DJ MÄTTHEW GRIFFIN how he felt when his name did not appear under the title of the story he composed? Lolita: I’m sorry, but I couldn’t figure out how to put those two little bunny ears on top of the A in his first name.



Rita: Maybe we can make it up to the guy with the bunny ears by having him tell about his favorite live show of 2013.  DJ MÄTTHEW GRIFFIN (The Noise): My 40th birthday bash, with Worsteria, the Performers, the Time Beings, and the Missionarys. It was an amazing panoply of sounds from Wormtown, spanning 30-plus years. Worsteria, with their oblivion marching powder and sludge-doom rendition of “Happy Birthday”; the Performers’ “Along for the Ride”: a funky song about a guy who drown; the Time Beings’ Preston Wayne aka King of the Whammy Bar, having the Missionarys’ siren vocalist, Caroline, throwing 20-dollar bills at his feet as he played. The long-awaited reunion of visceral, early ’90s post-punk band the Missionarys. It was the perfect way to turn 40!  *** COWBOY MACH BELL (Bag O’ Nails): Fave show was the Willie Alexander surprise b-day party-jam in Davis Square on 1/12/13. *** PREACHER JACK (Preacher Jack): My favorite show of 2013 had to be the first time I saw Satoru Nakagawa of the Tokyo Tramps play a solo (electric) guitar set. Satoru was preparing for a national “best blues guitarist” competition in Nashville last year and would try his performance out at Geezer’s Garage Nite in Quincy. Sitting alone, on top of the pool table in the middle of the room Satoru just blew me away that first time with his set of originals. ***  SCOTT MATALON (Matalon): Pat Travers Band at the Monster Mayhem Motorcycle Madness in Weston, FL! *** DAVE WESTNER (Woolly Mammoth Stound): Best show I’ve seen all year—no offense to the other great shows I’ve seen—was Chandler Travis Three-O at Atwoods on April 23rd.  He and his band reaffirmed my reason for getting into music in the first place. *** CARL BIANCUCCI (Classic Ruins): The Unnatural Axe show at Radio on 4/12 was pretty great—and their cover of “Butcher Baby” by the Plasmatics was icing on the cake. *** SARAH BLACKER (Sara Blacker): Hands down the best show I’ve seen all year was Shovels and Rope at the Sinclair. I had first heard of Cary Ann Hearst from my friend/fan, Don, host of the Rock ’n’ Roll Motel where I stay when performing in Charlotte, NC. Hearst’s song, “Hells Bells” was on the TV show, Six Feet Under, and the video and song were both so disturbingly cool. Her new project with singer/ songwriter husband, Michael Trent, is so ebullient and intense—I was moved to tears for nearly the entire show. Real, live, amazing talent—gives hope for the future of music! They are deserving of every ounce of success they’ve had after years of hard work and honest soul. *** KRISTEN MILLER (Kristen Miller): My dear Lolita, thank you for being such a neat house guest last week when you crashed on my couch after a late night of pub crawling. I have to say, the thing I have seen lately that has left the largest impact on me was a photo lecture by Jeremy Barnard at the Actor’s Studio in Newburyport. Not a live music show but, wow, this guy was totally inspiring, and made me grateful for the amazing arts scene here on the North Shore. Lolita: Kristen, thanks for the use of the couch, but I thought part of the deal was that you would leave some cookies out for me. *** BRAD BYRD (Brad Byrd): My favorite live show that I’ve seen in 2013 would have to be seeing Kate Redgate’s performance at Dyno Records on Record Store Day.  Rock-solid alt country songs that spoke the truth with a monster voice! *** LIZ FRAME (Liz Frame & the Kickers):  My man and I went to an excellent Ryan Bingham show in Boston a few months ago. Watching him perform really inspired me to go back home and write some rockers—which I did! *** CORIN ASHLEY (Corin Ashley): It’s still pretty early in the year, but I did a house concert opening up for Peter Case (of the Plimsouls) a few weeks ago and really enjoyed waching his set. My man has built up some powerful skills over the years and can really draw an audience into his songs. Inspirational. *** ERIC WATTS (Kevin MacDonald Band): My favorite show of 2013 so far was seeing K’s Choice at Johnny D’s on April 27th. Sadly, I learned that a very dear friend had passed away unexpectedly that morning. I thought about not attending the show, but knew Cheri would’ve wanted me to go. Hearing Sarah and Gert Bettens harmonize live (especially “Butterflies Instead”) was the perfect way to raise my spirits. Catch them live whenever possible. *** NICK ZAINO (Nick Zaino/ Millfire Ash): Can’t choose between Alejandro Escovedo at Bull Run and the Drive-By Truckers at the Paradise. Escovedo is a personal songwriting hero and his bands are always top-notch. He can rock any room and fill it with heart. The DBTs are the one band that can still make you believe rock ’n’ roll is a beautiful, world-changing thing. Eight hundred-plus people shouting, “Let there be rock.” Transcendent, cathartic experiences, both. Left excited to be alive. *** LARRY BANGOR (The Zulus/ Human Sexual Response): Mission of Burma’s show at the Bowery Ballroom tops anything else I’ve seen this year.  First time I’d heard them with horns! Lolita: Wait—who grew the horns, Larry or Mission of Burma? Rita: Sometimes it’s better to remain silent and thought a fool, than open your mouth and remove all doubt.


R.I.P. SHIRLEY LEWIS, the regal queen of the blues, passed away with her daughter by her side. She will be greatly missed locally, nationally, and internationally.

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