Whassamatta guys? Record store ain’t open yet?

” Heavy rotation on the CBC; whatever in Hell that really means…” – Kathleen Edwards, ” I Make the Dough, You Get the Glory”

In our constant quest for tunes we don’t know yet, we are often intrigued by what our friends are listening to at the moment. We’d like to offer some irregular postings of “what’s on the box” at our houses and in our cars, and as such , in our heads!

July, 2014: The return of Electric Warrior  

Electric WarriorThe pre-Oscar viewing binge in January included Dallas Buyer’s Club, wherein Thirty Seconds to Mars frontman Jared Leto snagged a prize for his portrayal of Rayon, the drag queen who humanizes Matt McConaughey’s protagonist. Rayon was a huge Marc Bolan fan, and T Rex can be heard behind several scenes. Several months prior, while cruising the stacks at Colorado Springs’ Independent Records, I had picked up a re-issue of the 1971 classic, now considered the first Glam Rock LP. The re-issue features some outtakes and Raw Ramp, a contemporaneous single, as well as a lengthy radio interview with Bolan during the U.S. tour behind the LP. EW later made the car audio box when estimable rocker Alejandro Escovedo mentioned online that he regularly listens to EW even today.


The ground-breaking LP heavily influenced Bolan’s friend David Bowie, who shared producer Tony Visconti , with its elegant strings, rocking guitars, smooth rhythms, and dreamy lyrics. Bolan and percussionist Mickey Finn are stellar throughout, and though Bolan often insisted that the music was far secondary to his lyrics, the tunes hold up quite well 40 years on. The huge U.S. single, ” Bang A Gong ( Get It On ) “, the lead track,           ” Mambo Sun “, the follow-up single ” Jeepster ” ( released without Bolan’s permission, causing him to switch labels to EMI ), ” Life’s A Gas “, and the raucous finale ” Rip Off “, are all well-constructed, enthusiastically played gems that would be radio-friendly  today. Bolan’s guitar work is an unexpected pleasure; no wonder he later played on recordings by Ringo Starr, Jeff Lynne, Bowie, Elton John, and Tina Turner. His tragic death in a car wreck at age 30 in 1977 seems to have only burnished the memory of the slight man in the top hat, feather boa, and glittered cheekbones with the quivering voice.

— Nanker Phledge


March 2014- English Oceans by the Drive-By Truckers

The new DBT release!

The new Drive-By Truckers release!

There’s a scene in The Secret To A Happy Ending, the marvelous DBT film that documents the run-up to the Blessing and A Curse CD and the departure of brilliant guitarist/singer/songwriter Jason Isbell, wherein Patterson Hood’s father, Musicians’ Hall of Fame member and original Swamper bassist David Hood, ponders his son’s perspective on growing up in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, during the 1970s. ” Duality of the Southern Thing? I’d never heard of that until he wrote it “. But you get a strong sense of the contradictions that Patterson grew up around from his lyrics, as well as viewing the great documentary Muscle Shoals, which explores how David and a small band of country white guys managed to create great music for artists of all races and nationalities. After meeting fellow local Mike Cooley in college, Patterson dragged his buddy through a string of failed bands and ventures until forming the Drive-By Truckers in the late 90s. That band was also on the verge of collapse when a group of Athens, Georgia investors staked the boys to one last Hail Mary, the 2001 epic double LP Southern Rock Opera, a sprawling take on coming of age in the South when George Wallace was Governor that morphs on the second record into a fantasy first-person account of the Lynyrd Skynyrd band career arc, culminating in the tragic plane crash that killed bandleader Ronnie Van Zant, emerging monster guitarist Stevie Gaines, and his sister Cassie Gaines. Esteemed critic Ken Tucker has said that SRO is the best rock album of this ( albeit brief ) century, and he’ll get no argument here.

The DBT have soldiered on through personnel changes since then, including the departures of the aforementioned Isbell, bassist Shonna Tucker ( who showed little gratitude for the band including several of her weak compositions on their records), and pedal steel guitarist John Neff, as well as the pass-through of alltime nice guy and legendary keyboardist Spooner Oldham. The current lineup now includes Jay Gonzalez on keys and youngster Matt Patton on bass, and the band has begun a long tour in support of the new CD English Oceans, currently dominating my car player and home box.

The new release is dominated by Mike Cooley compositions that remarkably mirror Patterson’s songs, and are alternated on the disc. While the hardcore fans will always rightfully mourn Jason Isbell’s departure, and mostly cheer Tucker’s, the absence of a third songwriter forced Cooley to crank out more songs, and the Stroker Ace does not disappoint here. ” Shit Shots Count “, ” Primer Coat “, and ” Hearing Jimmy Loud ” are sure to be concert favorites, and Cooley nails my favorite couplet from the CD with this view of Jimmy’s girlfriend:

” She had a tanning habit, she’s like a talking leather couch ; Warm between the cushions where she hid whatever treasure fell out ”

Cooley also has his first lead vocal on a Hood tune, ” Till He’s Dead or Rises “, and the title track, along with his usual wailing guitar work. The Hood songs seem pale by comparison until Track 11, when Jay Gonzalez’ soft chords  open ” When Walter Went Crazy “. It has been said that the Truckers are at their best singing about people at their worst, and this tale of quiet desperation ending in arson is classic Hood, with his insightful character development, plain speaking lyrics, and his inimitable sing/speak delivery. You can see trouble coming when Walter finally reaches the edge:

” She watched him walk out the door and knew he was gone; Matlock on the TV and her mama on the phone ”

The CD and last track, ” Grand Canyon “, are dedicated to longtime crew member Craig Lieske, who passed away last year while on tour with the band. Anyone who visited the DBT merch table over the years probably handed cash or card to Craig, and the band’s mournful loss is elegantly chronicled by Hood:

” There’s a white owl out my window soft-lit in fading light                                                He’ll go soaring through the clouds and hunting through the night                                      and in my dreams I’ll still see him flying through a western sky                                            I’ll think about Grand Canyon and I’ll lift my glass and smile ”

Patterson likes to say that a song is a ” grower ” , meaning that you come to like it more each time you listen, and the songs that don’t grab you right away might have you by the throat as time passes. That’s English Oceans in a nutshell.


January 2014 – the New Year’s Rotation — Songs for Slim Compilation CD

Back in 2009 on a visit to Minneapolis, Harry Gebippe took me to a terrific show at a small stage overlooking the lake at the the Minnesota State Zoo featuring Son Volt and opened by local artist and former Replacements guitarist Slim Dunlap. The love for Slim was immediately apparent from the crowd response, and his unassuming stage manner and witty banter won over many converts. One song poked fun at his still-unknown status           ( ” I’m playing at the Zoo..” ), another his famed associates ( ” Paul Westerberg, that’s one crazy man…” ), and after the fourth song he announced,   ” that’s all our good material” !

His friends have put together a fine benefit CD with an unbelievable lineup: The Replacements, Lucinda Williams, Patterson Hood, Jeff Tweedy, Lucero, Jakob Dylan, Steve Earle… heard enough yet? By all accounts, Slim is a great guy who suffered a brain tumor and needs the support. On my visit to Minneapolis on 12/28/13, when I asked my buddy TJ if I could pick up anything for him at the famed Electric Fetus, he simply said,      ” Songs for Slim “. I scored a copy for myself, as well, and it’s an excellent CD for a good cause.

—  Nanker Phledge

The compilation CD to benefit Slim Dunlap

The compilation CD to benefit Slim Dunlap

Slim Dunlap - Photo by Robert Matheu

What Is Songs For Slim?  Check out songsforslim.com where they explain:

On February 19th, 2012 former Replacements guitarist Slim Dunlap was hospitalized due to a massive right brain stroke. Insurance does not pay for long term care and the general prognosis for Slim is that he will need around-the-clock care for the rest of his life. He needs our help.

Songs For Slim is a non-profit project that raises money for Slim and his family by having various artists cover songs from his solo works. All proceeds go towards assisting Slim and his family with the significant expenses related towards his long term care. After an initial, limited-edition deluxe 10″ EP by The Replacements in January 2013, subsequent releases were pressed every month as limited edition split 7” vinyl 45s in beautiful, numbered picture sleeves featuring original artwork by Chris Mars. A total of 8 records were auctioned off in 2013 plus there was a special 45 released for Record Store Day and a commercial version of The Replacements EP was released in April 2013. All Songs For Slim releases are also available digitally. On November 12, 2013, we’ll be putting out a 2CD compilation of all the Slim songs in the series plus some bonus tracks.

Spring 2013

Harry Gebippe offers the following playlist from his new mix, “Spring Cleaning 2013”:

Blue Canoe                                                              Blue Mountain:  Probably the best known song by the husband-wife team of Cary Hudson and Laurie Stirratt (the twin sister of Wilco band member John Stirratt – and, like him, a bass player).  The band reunited a few years back, after a hiatus of 6 or 7 years & played a showcase gig at the 2012 Americana Music Festival in Nashville.

New York Banker                                                   Todd Snider:  A witty yet perceptive commentary on the roots of the recent economic crisis, by the Portland neo-folkie.

Good Things Happen To Bad People              Richard Thompson:  I couldn’t resist putting these two songs, with their identical choruses, back-to-back, although where Snider was addressing global concerns, Thompson’s song is highly personal.  This is from Thompson’s latest, “Electric.”

Too High For The Love-In                                   Camper Van Beethoven:  The strange, druggy lyrics, 60’s-style psychedelic instrumentation and odd tempo changes can only mean one thing:  the Campers are definitely back.  “Make me a sandwich” indeed!

Western Shore                                                        Ryan Bingham:  The former rodeo cowboy has chosen the less dangerous but equally challenging vocation of making music.  This elegiac offering is from his 2012 release, “Tomorrowland.”

Ring Of Fire                                                              Ruthie Foster:  Where Johnny Cash’s version blazed, Ruthie’s take on the June Carter/Merle Kilgore classic smolders, in a stunning, totally deconstructed arrangement.

Inner City Blues                                                      Rodriguez:  Compare this 1970 composition with fellow Detroiter Marvin Gaye’s song by the same name (subtitled “Make Me Wanna Holler”) recorded over a year later.  Evidently, there’s something about the bleakness of Detroit that inspires songwriters – and that’s a cold fact.

Heart On A String                                                   Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit:  This song was on Jason & the Unit’s last studio CD, but this live version, with the horn section in tow, swings harder.

The Rival                                                                  Richard Thompson:  Another one from “Electric,” this one reflecting Richard’s English folk-rock roots, from his Fairport Convention days.  Stuart Duncan’s fiddle playing is exceptionally tasteful.

Find Yourself A Lover                                           The Ericksons:  Sweet sibling harmonies from sisters Bethany Valentini and Jenny Kapernick.  They took their name from the surname of Bethany’s late husband, who died in 2006, but not before encouraging her to “do your music.”  Lee Erickson lives on, thanks to Bethany and Jenny.

A New Life                                                                Jim James:  One of the more accessible tracks on Yim Yames’ new solo album is this r & b flavored composition; a definite departure from the big rock sound of My Morning Jacket.

Water                                                                         Eric Burdon:  A big, overblown production number from the old Animal’s uneven current solo CD, “’Til Your River Runs Dry.”  While I appreciate his tributes to Bo Diddley on the record, I’m puzzled and dismayed by his wholesale appropriation of Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson’s song “It Was A Dream,” for his allegedly “original” composition, “Invitation To The White House,” without the slightest acknowledgement of its origins.

Getaway                                                                    Dr. John:  The Night Tripper showed the world that he’s still got plenty of gris-gris left, on his Dan Auerbach (Black Keys) – produced and Grammy-winning 2012 release, “Locked Down.”  Auerbach gets in a blistering solo after the false ending; call it “the producer’s prerogative.”

The Dark Don’t Hide It                                          Magnolia Electric Company:  The Missus is very high on this band, although I find frontman/songwriter Jason Molina’s voice a bit thin.  Still, this one is classic Americana.  [Postscript:  RIP Jason Molina, who passed away in late March, after a lifelong battle with alcoholism.]

Come Unto Me                                                        The Mavericks:  We were privileged to witness one of the first public performances of this song at the American Music Honors & Awards show last September, just released on CD this month.  It’s got all the elements of the cross-cultural sound that’s unique to The Mavericks.

Bakersfield                                                               Son Volt:  It’s back to the beginnings for Jay Farrar & Co., as they strive to recreate the magic of the seminal alt-country classic, “Trace.”  Farrar’s voice shines amid the pedal steel/fiddle mix, with just enough twang to hold up the “alt” half of the alt-country equation.

Cherry O                                                                   Sam Llanas:  The ex-BoDeans front man got quiet and introspective on this 2011 solo release; a far cry from the rowdy rockers for which his former band was known.

Come A Long Way                                                 Michelle Shocked:  Probably our favorite program on The Current is Bill DeVille’s “United States of Americana,” airing live on Sunday mornings from 8:00 – 10:00 Central (and archived at mpr.org – check it out!).  I was listening casually one morning recently when this one came on, and literally pulled me away from my coffee & the Sunday paper & got me dancing in front of the speakers.  Like the song that began this mix, this one is an oldie (1992), but the thing I love about Americana is that the good ones are timeless.

Ringing In the New 2013Gebippe’s new mix

Soon to be dominating Nanker’s car audio, the new compilation CD from our own Harry Gebippe with the Latest Greatest, as Jeff Tweedy says:

Live And Die The Avett Brothers
Pop! Go the Avett Brothers! I was going to make some snide comment about how they seem to have lost their edge, in search of a wider audience, then The Missus informed me that the new album was cut during or after a time when a child of one of the brothers had gone through some terrible health crisis. With that background, the more wistful, less rowdy tone of the new album is understandable.

Lost In My Mind The Head and The Heart
This particular version is off the Live Current Vol. 8 collection of in-studio recordings. Catchy, neo-folk that pairs well with the preceding cut.

Ho Hey The Lumineers
The single off the Denver trio’s debut CD. They played the Basilica Block Party this summer with an expanded lineup & sounded great. Hopefully, you can catch their show when the feds relocate you to the Rocky Mountain state this summer.

Santa Fe Eilen Jewell
No typos in the spelling of the self-described Queen of the Minor Key’s name. My buddy, Mike, was quite taken by her at her Dakota Jazz Club show last fall & gave me this CD. I think this mournful ballad is my favorite. That’s Eilen on the harp at the end, too.

I Lost My Job Of Loving You Jim Lauderdale & Buddy Miller
OK, time to lively things up a bit. The Missus and I were privileged to witness the debut performance of this collaboration between two Americana music heavyweights, at the AMA Honors & Awards show this past summer.

Pay In Blood Bob Dylan
Yeah, his voice is a mess, but the man can still pen a decent song, even if he “borrows” from other artists occasionally. From “Tempest.

Long Time Gone Tim O’Brien & Darrell Scott
I love the title of this live CD: “We’re Usually A Lot Better Than This.” This was recorded at the Grey Eagle in Asheville, where these 2 guys played benefit concerts in consecutive years for the Arthur Morgan School there, where both had kids attending. Some mighty fancy pickin’!

Haunted Kelly Hogan
Nice backup band: Booker T on the B-3 (of course); Scott Ligon, lately of NRBQ, Gabriel Roth (bassist, bandleader & song writer for The Dap Kings), and James Gadson, who has drummed with and for just about everybody in r ‘n b history. Whew! The song was written by Kelly’s fellow Mekon, the great Jon Langford.

Love Must Have Passed Me By Rosie Flores (with Bobby Vee)
I was stunned to read the liner notes & discover that Rosie’s new CD was recorded right here in Mpls.! This tender ballad was written by Mr. Robert Thomas Velline; yep, that’s Fargo’s own Bobby Vee, who joins Rosie on this duet.

Shoorah! Shoorah! Joan Osborne
It’s unfortunate that she’ll forever be identified as “that girl that did that ‘What If God Was One Of Us’ song” because she’s really a terrific soul/r ‘n b singer. She was featured on that “Standing In The Shadows of Motown” documentary about those great Motown session musicians, and toured with them subsequently. I really regret having missed her Dakota appearance in September, but I won’t miss her next time around!

Can’t Talk At All Pete Donnelly
Archie Bell & The Drells should sue. Blatant rip-off or homage? I prefer to think of it as the latter. I yanked this very catchy number by The Figgs’ & NRBQ’s bassist off a Good Land Records sampler I picked up at Trapper Schoepp & The Shades’ merch table. More Good Land to follow!

Ridin’ High Dave Brady And The Stars
This is from a recently-released collection called “Twin Cities Funk & Soul,” a lovingly assembled group of songs from various local bands from the mid-60’s to the late-70’s. I know you’ll dig the name of the label that released this: Secret Stash Records. Looking forward to the appearance of some of these funk & soul musicians at The Current’s upcoming 8th birthday party.

Snake Oil Capital of the World Graham Parker & The Rumour
The incisive, insightful lyrics, the reggae beat – yes, GP & The Rumour are back! This CD won’t pin your ears back, like your first listen to “Howlin’ Wind” or “Heat Treatment,” but it’s a welcome addition to their catalogue.

Reboot The Mission The Wallflowers, featuring Mick Jones
While we’re dusting off late 70’s British rock heroes, give a listen to this neo-Clash mash-up, with its shout –out to Joe Strummer, among others.

My Neighbor Burns Trash Southern Culture On the Skids
OK, this wasn’t the smoothest transition between songs, but I had to stick this one in here somewhere. The Missus and I sang the chorus to this song during our road trip to Nashville, every time we passed a house on Hwy. 61 with a burn barrel a-blazing! And there were many. Hilarious lyrics!

Snake Farm Ray Wylie Hubbard
You know him from his anthem “Up Against The Wall, Redneck Mother,” but this creepy but mordantly funny bit deserves a wider audience, so I’m throwing it in here. Besides, it goes well with the preceding selection.

The Juice Soul Asylum
It’s been a long time between albums for these local heroes, and shortly after this one was released this summer, Danny Murphy announced he was quitting the band, leaving Dave Pirner as the only original member.

The Descent Bob Mould
Another local hero, although the head Husker Du-er relocated to D.C. years ago. The man still knows how to write the big, loud rocker, though.

Tracks Trapper Schoepp & The Shades
As you know from the review, these boys (and the tantalizing Gina Romantina) knocked our collective socks off this summer. This is the single from their sophomore CD, a great piece of Americana writing. Sure hope they took my advice & sent a demo tape to the Americana Music Festival folks. They’d go over huge.

Rope Jetty Boys
Another great bar band rocker from that Good Land Records sampler, with a terrific, anthem-like chorus. Comparisons to The Gaslight Anthem would not be far off. For a bunch of cheeseheads, they sure put out some good music on that label!

Nanker’s answer to ” What’s on the box? ” December 28, 2012


Special thanks to the Notorious P for smuggling this across the border!

“Kings and Queens” – Blackie and the Rodeo Kings

Still amazed at Candians’ affinity for Americana, I’ve been wearing out this re-issue Deluxe Edition of the Juno award-winning trio of singer/songwriter/guitarists’ great 2011 roots music CD, this time with two standout tracks from new Queen Patty Loveless and wonderful packaging with the iconic rodeo photo on the cover. Check out that dude’s pants! Hey, I’d be rockin’ that garb to stand next to her! The concept was to honor strong independent women, like the Kings’ Moms, by pairing great female Queens of song with BARK on mostly original tunes by the band, along with some notable covers. And what a cast they’ve assembled over the two years of the project: Lucinda Williams, Roseanne Cash, Emmylou Harris, Exene Cervenka, Janiva Magness ( who rocked the Crystola Roadhouse this summer!), Pam Tillis, and Ms. Loveless, along with some names new to me: Patty Cole and Serena Ryder, and a name you don’t see often, the Boss’ wife Patti Scialfa.

The tunes are well crafted and vary in tempo and mood from easy ramblers like ” I’ve Got You Covered” and ” Heart A Mine”, to poignant ballads ” Golden Sorrows” and ” Love Lay Me Down”, and jumpin’ romps ” If I Can’t Have You”, ” How Come You Treat Me So Bad?”, and ” Black Sheep”. With three vocalists, BART can match their singer with the Queen to suit the song, and there is plenty of able picking on slide, steel, electric and violin to soothe or stir the soul as needed.

Sure, you can use that gift card, or search the big boxes online, but why not go right to the source and support the artist and label directly? It’s the least we can do for the Canadians, who are guarding the Maple Syrup Strategic Reserve, after all. I kid you not! Here’s the link:


Nanker as Rodeo King!

Nanker as Rodeo King!

You like those Bill Lee pancakes with syrup, eh Nanker? — Ed.

Gebippe’s Fall Sampling for Phledge- ” Changing Seasons”

Being the kind soul that he is, my buddy HG slipped a CD past security to keep me up on the new, the old, and the stuff I need to hear. Check out the playlist:

Hot Rod Lincoln Bill Kirchen
Not a new release but a recent acquisition, this cut shows off the ex-Lost Planet Airman’s amazing ability to ape the guitar styles of myriad artists, from Marty Robbins to Jimi Hendrix, and all the Kings (including Billie Jean King). I lost count at 30. Definitely the show stopper of his live set.

Dallas The Flatlanders
Always on The Flatlanders’ set lists (individually and collectively), this is the original recording, from 40 years ago, when Messrs. Gilmore, Ely & Hancock laid down 14 tracks at a West Texas studio, that were promptly shelved until they were rediscovered and released as “The Odessa Tapes” this year.

Still Not Home Tift Merritt
She’s never quite hit the high water mark of her landmark “Tambourine” release, but the new CD comes closer than any of ‘em. Looking forward to her show @ The Cedar on Saturday!

Gettin’ Down On The Mountain Corb Lund
Sure hope you get a chance to see this Canuck, who now calls Texas his home. Hopefully, this sardonic survivalist ditty will be the push you need to get you out the door & into the club. “Don’t wanna be around when the shit goes down / I’ll be goin’ to ground on the mountain.” Fuggin’ great stuff!

Jericho John Fullbright
My favorite track on the Oklahoman’s fantastic new CD, “From The Ground Up.” The passion and intensity he brings to this song give me goose bumps, even on repeated listenings. Kind of reminds me of The Band, for some reason.

Waitin’ For The Wheel Kevin Bowe & The Okemah Prophets
Bowe is a local guy, with an impressive array of friends in the biz, who helped out on this excellent Americana release. Chuck Prophet plays lead on this track & several others, while Nels Cline (!), Scarlet Rivera, Freedy Johnston & Randy Sabien lend their talents elsewhere.

Cavalier Shovels And Rope
We first saw this minimalist duo open for Hayes Carll on one of his appearances here & were totally smitten. This may be their breakout CD. Love the nod to The Talking Heads in the final chorus. They had a showcase slot at the recent AMA Fest, but, regrettably, we missed it. Next year, if not sooner!

Guantanamo Ry Cooder
You can take credit for this one. I read the NYT article you forwarded to me & decided I had to have the record. I was NOT disappointed! Props to you, Phledge!

I Push Right Over Rosie Flores
Another older CD, one that I pulled from the dollar bins @ Grimey’s in Nashville. Love the Western swing arrangement on this Robbie Fulks-penned tune. Besides, I push right over for Ms. Flores.

Wrong Side Of Love Waco Brothers & Paul Burch
The Chicago wild men team up with folker Paul Burch on this one. Straightforward old school rock ‘n roll.

Scratching Circles JD McPherson
There was huge buzz around this 50’s/rockabilly guy when this CD came out earlier this year. We caught his Twin Cities debut, when he was still breaking in a new keyboard guy & drummer. He came back to play a free show @ the MN State Fair, and is headlining @ 1st Ave. next month. Guy’s starting to be a pest!

Highway 42 Grayson Capps & The Lost Cause Minstrels
On a whim, I asked a clerk at Grimey’s if they had anything new by Grayson and, lo & behold, she came up with this brand new release by the Gulf Coast shitkicker! Remember “Big Black Buzzard” from a previous mix? Wish he’d tour North of the Mason-Dumbass line (apologies to James McMurtry).

Blues Can’t Even Find Me John Hiatt
We picked up a copy of the Limited Tour edition of his new CD after his Cannery Ballroom set – for a mere 8 bucks! I don’t know how he does it, but he’s cranked out another solid bunch of tunes, including this closing track.

Te Ni Nee Ni Nu Slim Harpo
Jinx picked up this great “best of” compilation by the tragic Delta blues man, who died of a heart attack just a couple of weeks shy of his 46th birthday, in 1970.
Good enough for Mick & Keef (“Hipshaker” on the Exile album is really his “Shake Your Hips”), good enough for me!

Way Down Under Little Feat
First album of new material from the tireless, enduring Featsters in several years. Classic Feat second line rhythm & slide work; you can close your eyes and imagine this one going off on a 15-minute jam.

Splitter Calexico
From the new release, “Algiers;” the boys from Tucson continue to create great music, with one foot on either side of the border.

Money The Mastersons
You know them from their work backing up Steve Earle on his last couple of tours, but they’re making a name for themselves in their own right. Between Eleanor Whitmore’s lovely voice and Chris Masterson’s tasteful guitar work, they’ve got a very bright future indeed.

36 Cars The New Orleans Suspects
A “supergroup” of sorts, comprised of The Radiators’ bassist, The Nevilles’ drummer, and cats who’ve played in The Dirty Dozen Brass Band & other assorted N’Awlins bands. We picked up this CD in The Crescent City & I was pleasantly surprised when they booked a gig at a local bar here in August. Paul & I went & thoroughly enjoyed them, despite their late start.

The One and Only NRBQ
Not everyone “gets” The Q, so, although I think this whole CD is pretty sensational, I’ll stick with the opening track, for its accessibility. I’ve probably seen this band 8 times, but the last time before this summer’s Famous Dave’s gig was maybe 20 years ago. What a thrill to see them back in circulation again, despite the death of their longtime drummer and keyboardist/bandleader Terry Adams’ own bout with cancer.

Better Off Without Patterson Hood
I’ll close out this mess with one of the more rockin’ cuts on your boy’s fine new solo CD. The beat & arrangement kind of reminds one of “The Righteous Path,” no?

Reprinted with permission from the “Changing Seasons” setlist, 10/1/12. All rights reserved, whatever that means.

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