Rita: This being our first official issue of 2015 we’d like to take time to recognize those who have impressed us over the past year. In these pages you’ll find a number of top ten lists by the writers of The Noise. Lolita: We extend those top tens by asking musicians to share their top three music experiences from the past year.
TOP THREE MUSIC EXPERIENCES
Rita: Hey Mark—step right up here to the mic and let us know what your top three musical experiences were in 2014. MARK BRYANT (Seasound Studio): 2014 was the year that the South Shore finally hit the radar as a welcome alternative to live shows! 1. Americanafest with Big Sandy & his Flyrite Boys at The Spire Center in Plymouth. 2. Hayley Sabella King SolomonCD release party also at the Spire. 3. Nick Lowe with Los Straitjackets’ holiday show at The Narrows. *** LINDA VIENS (Kingdom of Love): 2014 was a GREAT year for seeing live music. There were quite a few great shows, big and small, but I will TRY to whittle it down to two plus an experience: Tom Petty at Fenway Park, Fleetwood Mac at TD Garden, and meeting George Clinton from Parliment Funkadelic at his book signing event in Cambridge—out of this world! *** RICK BERLIN (with The Nickel & Dime Band): 1. Video-taping a rehearsal of The Bethel AME Praise and Worship Team, voices lifting me out of myself. 2. Playing so many N&D shows with the incredible Jane Mangini (and even one with Joe Pet at the now sadly gone Smoken’ Joe’s—nearly an Airlift reunion). 3. CD release at the Lizard Lounge for When We Were Kids (including heartfelt set by Gordon Gano and Brian Viglione). *** JIM COUNTRYMAN(Lovewhip/ Erin Harpe & the Delta Swingers/ Erin Harpe’s Delta Blues Duo): 1. 23 shows in 28 days in the UK in April. Our Delta Blues Duo with Erin Harpe, me on uke bass. The UK is awesome but Scotland is the shit! 2. Lovewhip headlining the Green Love Fest in August at Harry Brown’s Farm in Maine with a seven-piece band, fire spinners, dancers, and hula hoopers. 3. Lovewhip’s epic cabin set at Wormtown in September! Erin is the new Jimi Hendrix! 4. House party in Javea, Spain, playing on a deck looking out onto the Mediterranean! It was a good year! *** WILL DAILEY (Will Dailey): My three favorite shows I had off the top of my head… 1. Salle Paul Fort—Nantes, France. 2.The Backyard—Brighton, MA. 3. A Warehouse—Boulder, CO. *** KIER BYRNES (Three Day Threshold): 1. Having our band open for Bare Naked Ladies and getting to sing the National Anthem solo to kick off the show. 2. Getting another chance to play with surf guitar legend, Dick Dale. 3. Recording/releasing a new Christmas song each of the 12 days leading up to Christmas. It was one of the quickest, most fun albums we have ever done! *** DEB HARDY (Deb Hardy): Seeing Jon Anderson at the Shalin Liu. Playing the open mic at the Pig’s Eye in Salem with bassist Tom Alley for the first time because we hadn’t met before and yet he was willing to perform an original song with me with no rehearsal! He blew me away! And performing on the street with Tom Alley at Gloucester’s Block Party. *** JON MACEY (Fox Pass): A tough question because it will sound like I am in a time machine. I saw Tom Rush at Symphony. Dylan at The Orpheum. Fox Pass at The Cantab. What year is this? *** ALEJANDRO NECOCHEA (Township/ Worshipper/ Bang Camaro): Releasing Township’s latest album, Light Years, on cassette at the Lizard Lounge with Jenny Dee & the Deelinquents; forming Worshipper with John Brookhouse (Rule/ Dirty Truckers), Bob Maloney (Cult 45/ Slim Jim & the Mad Cows), and Dave Jarvis (Mellow Bravo); and seeing Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats at the Middle East Downstairs. *** MR. CURT (Fun Era Fifty): 1. Hauschka (Volker Bertelmann) at Cafe 939, Boston, MA, on April 26. An experimental, classically trained German pianist who truly defies classification. He creates chamber music, electronica, theatrical scores, improv, but usually performs solo on prepared-piano. We thrilled at almost two hours of keyboard wizardry, whose sound is constantly altered by the insertion of alien objects between or upon its strings, hammers and dampers. He is both instinctive and fueled by a love of rhythm. His concert was cosmically transcendent. 2. Rabbit Rabbit at Cafe 939, Boston, MA, on August 2. Another special evening at one of the best listening rooms in the city! Carla Kihlstedt (violin/voice) and Matthias Bossi (percussion/piano/voice) are one of the most inventive couples in modern era progressive music, revealing an intimate and dramatic music that draws on their love of art song, folk song, industrial music, improvised music, and heart-wrenching balladry, rendered on a motley assortment of acoustic instruments. Their songs, which they release monthly through their subscription service, are raw and beautiful, sparse and rich, lighthearted and full of pathos. Fiercely independent and totally relevant! 3. Anais Mitchell at Iron Horse, Northampton on October 12. As Harry C. Tuniese so wisely summed up in The Noise December issue, amongst modern folk singers, Anais is simply one of the best. Fearlessly emotive, exuberant, spirited, yet brimming with innocence, she possesses both an earthiness and an urban edge, all highlighted in her magnificent tunes. Whenever she performs, we are there! *** SAM BAYER (Sam Bayer): 1. Having Cosy Sheridan tell me “You’re very good at this” after my set at Giuseppe’s in August, on a beautiful Gloucester day. 2. Getting laughs where I meant to at Dedham’s Paradise Cafe for “It Ain’t Over till the Cat Lady Sings,” written in response to the worst songwriting prompt in the history of the universe. 3. Starting my $%^&# latest album after four years of hand-wringing. I know, it ain’t much, but down here in the minor leagues, you gotta savor whatever you can get. *** DAVE BAILIN (Dave Bailin & the Bailouts): 2014 was a great music year for me, very active. 1. The release of my band’s studio album and CD release shows at The Spotlight, Pig’s Eye, and The Grog. 2. Rich Robinson live at the Paradise in Boston, MA. His new album is killer! 3. Playing solo gigs in the Florida Keys. Looking forward to going back to play more this year. *** ANDY MILAS (Esthema): 1. The release of Esthema’s Long Goodbye on 6/3/14. 2. The recording of Esthema’s Long Goodbye. 3. Listening to OPETH’s 2014 release, Pale Communion for the first time. *** AJDA THE TURKISH QUEEN (Black Fortress of Opium/AjDIO): My top three musical experiences of 2014 included being on stage with Black Fortress of Opium in May, with AjDIO in November, and seeing Black Sabbath at the Hollywood Bowl in April. Lolita: Wow—you were in Hollywood last year? Oh that’s right, you’re one of the stars in The Women in Black 2—Angels of the Opium Fortress.
HERE NOW THE NEWS
Lolita: You never know what the person walking next to you may have accomplished in their lives. Always be respectful of strangers—they may be the one holding the key to your enlightenment. Here now are some pretty enlightening people with news to share. NABIL and JOSEPH SATER purchased the building that the Middle East has been occupying for many years. This means that over 100 jobs have been saved and their never-ending service to the music community will continue. *** LAUREN PASSARELLI was the first-ever woman to graduate from Berklee College of Music as a guitar performance major. She’s joined the band AFTERFAB—THE BEATLES SOLO YEARS. *** The keyboard position in WHAT TIME IS IT MR. FOX? has switched from long-time core member LORI PERKINS to RENEE DUPUIS (Bandit Kings/ Renee & Joe). *** TERRY KITCHEN’s novel Next Big Thing, has been released as an audio book, read by the author, and is available at audible.com, Amazon, and iTunes. *** TOM EATON has opened Diamond Cove Music in Gloucester (57 Main St—next to Lupita). He should pick up the business that Gloucester Music had when they were still open. *** Menotomy Grill & Tavern (Mass Ave & Rt 60, Arlington, MA), owned by BILLY LYONS(former House of Blues GM), offers music every Thursday night. *** The documentary film Call Me Lucky is about America’s premier and bluesy political satirist BARRY CRIMMINS. Musician/ comedian CHANCE LANGTON is a talking head in the film which is produced by comedian BOBCAT GOLDTHWAIT. *** The GODDAMN DRACULAS are now referring to themselves as THE DRAX—and they’re releasing a new CD on 2/7/15 at the Middle East Downstairs. *** ERIC LAW gets our vote for fan of the year (again). He went to see 155 shows in 2014, taking in 313 sets of music at 51 different locations. If you’d like to be considered for top fan status, contact The Noise. *** Passim’s Iguana Music Fund grants have awarded a record amount of just over $45,000 to support local musicians and their projects in 2014. Lolita: Go to their website to see if you won one of their grants.
HAPPY TASTE BUDS
Rita: When it’s so cold outside it’s good to keep your taste buds happy. I want to find out how people are accomplishing that. Amy—what do you like eating lately? AMY FAIRCHILD(Amy Fairchild): Crispin Browns Lane Hard Cider in 16 0z cans. Best hard cider ever. That and Justin’s Classic Almond Butter! *** JAY DIBIASIO (Three Day Threshold/ Spacecramp): Lately, my taste buds have been kept extremely happy. My oyster-hunting girlfriend extraordinaire, Melanie, has recently procured us some of the finest bivalves one can dredge up on the North Shore. To her secret flats she went, with waders and a rake, and returned triumphant with a delicious bounty of shellfish. We dined on raw oysters, oyster shooters, and barbecued them right on the grill with a golden buttery blend of parmesan, garlic, parsley, chive, lemon, and cayenne hot sauce. Paired with angel hair, salty brussels sprouts, and crispy pork belly… it was pretty much the best meal ever! *** RAY MASON (Ray Mason Band/ Lonesome Brothers): My taste buds are kept happy lately (and daily) by what I like to refer to as the “breakfast of champions” (or something like that): a banana, cup of coffee, three meds, one multi, two fish oil caps and a bowl of Cheerios with soymilk light and honey. Then I’m ready to face the day! *** RICK BARTON (Continental): I know this may sound boring as I’ve become a mostly raw and organic juice guy! But I make a killer chocolate and kale smoothie which I thoroughly crave everyday! Here goes: organic protein powder (no sugar)/ raw cacao powder/ cacao nibs/ organic no salt peanut butter/ organic virgin coconut oil/ flax/ chia seeds/ psyllium husks/ organic blueberries/ organic kale/ almond milk (no sugar) and coconut water! Deeeeelicious! *** HENRY SANTORO (RadioBDC): H-Mart in Central Sq., Cambridge. Wow. Just wow. Great store, amazing food, and happy people. In this world, those three things mean the world. That, and Hubba-Hubba. *** DAVE WESTNER (Woolly Mammoth Sound): I’ve been doing a lot of bread baking lately. Mixing dough, mixing music… all tasty. Lolita: Maybe an oven should become part of a recording studio’s equipment list. Dave: Analog or digital oven? *** KRISTEN MILLER (Kristen Miller): Musical taste buds: Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, Nick Drake, and Ravel. Literal taste buds: dark chocolate. Did you know it prevents senility?Lolita: I guess I’ll never go senile because I always choose the dark over the milk.
SINGLE PLY VS. DOUBLE PLY
Rita: Now we know there are some musicians who prefer to answer unconventional questions. So we weren’t surprised by who answered this last question and that the answers got even more unhinged. Our special question is “Single ply vs. double ply—where do you stand, and why?” FRANK ROWE (Classic Ruins): Well, of course there is a lot to be said in favor of the single-ply approach: deeper penetration, less discomfort. But I prefer double-ply at times, the stout rubber band exerting minimal discomfort. *** NIKI LUPARELLI (Niki Luparelli & the Gold Diggers/ the Steamy Bohemians): Double ply, hell, make mine quinta ply! The older I get, the more I detest cheap toilet paper. Ladies have to use TP about five to ten times more a day then men, 30 times if we’ve been drinking. Unless we’re drinking in the woods, but back when I was young enough to drink in the woods hiding from the cops, I probably would have wiped with a dry, crunchy leaf… no, perhaps the drip method. Hard to say in hindsight. *** CHANDLER TRAVIS (Spinning Cubist Possum Party): I take a pretty aggressive dump, and nowadays the only thing that will really stand up to that kind of pressure without splattering is the new “Lucky Seven” 7-ply Ogre Deluxe from Black & Dekker. I used to use regular industrial cardboard (whole boxes at a time, actually, just stuff ’em right up there), but Ogre is gentler, and of course I love the aroma, so I’m glad they’re unscented—and so’s the little missus! Rita: Look for Black & Dekker’s ad for Ogre’s “Lucky Seven” in this issue of The Noise.
Lolita: Here is a note from PREACHER JACK’s manager, PETER LEVINE…
It is with VERY heavy heart that I bring this news. In all likelihood Preacher Jack’s days as a live performer are over. For those who haven’t heard Jack became ill a couple of months back. He passed out, damaged his legs, and has been confined to the Tewksbury State Hospital since. Medical tests have determined that he needs multiple operations that cannot be performed until he is strong enough. So for the foreseeable future he will be confined to the hospital resting & recuperating. Jack IS well enough to receive visitors and with Jack being the people person he is, would love the company. Please continue to pray for Jack and send out any and all healing thoughts his way. As all who know Jack he is a firm and steadfast “believer”—that was not just stage show bluster —he feels strongly about his spiritual beliefs and I am SURE his belief system will get him through this ordeal. Thank you to all that have reached out to Jack in this very trying time for him. It IS appreciated by all. Jack would want everybody to remember the good times.
Rita: And here is a hand-written letter sent in. If more readers wrote (email and text count), the letter column would return…
Before my dinging dandy of a brother starts bitching at me for using a pen to write with in “his” chair (@#$ç%*!), let me say, I finally got a copy of December’s Noise. Thank god for Bob Garnick—and I know why I didn’t see any up at the Grog!
1. Christine Ohlman: I’ve seen her once, at least twice—maybe three times. And I vaguely remember an Oxford Ale House in Cambridge, near Harvard Square, but I haven’t seen any her in Connecticut.
2. Jon Butcher: I ran into this guy back in 1980-81 in Lowell at the Raft (now defunct) and he’s better now! Not that he wasn’t pretty damn good back then. I’m glad he’s still at it.
3. Then I see the name Gary Shane jump off page 29, and I’m like, whoa! How come I don’t have to pick up my eyes and put them back in my head? “Higher Ground” is right! I didn’t even know the poor guy was sick! But hey—1980? ’81? Maybe we’re all sick!
I miss the Raft. I just hope that someday I get to see that Larcom Theater in Beverly. Which brings me back to Mr. Butcher: Finally something I can honestly say was awesome—and I wasn’t even there! And I don’t use the word “awesome”! He had Evan Goodrow open for him? Wow. I’m speechless. Beverly—Larcom—see it, hear it, do it. Please go. I don’t care if you’re 18 or 102!
Oh well, John H. Schefield
• ••• •
RIP: HOWIE COOK owner of the old Euphoria Sound Studios, renamed Sound & Vision Media, died on January 14 in a surfing accident in St. Maarten.