Photo: Anna on the fiddle

Been thinking of posting some of my photos for a while on here and I will at some make a space for that, but for now I am going to post one of my personal favorites:

That’s Anna Roberts-Gevalt, fiddler and music archivist extraordinaire, and also one half of the incredible act Anna and Elizabeth (with Elizabeth LaPrelle). You’ll surely be hearing a lot more about Anna and Elizabeth from me and others, particularly when their EP and accompanying video is released later this year.

Photo was taken at The Swoop House in Blacksburg, VA on December 15th, 2011

What the flip happened here? (Everything Is Broken)

If you didn’t notice, the site kind of crashed and I’ve been rebuilding what was lost. I think we are back now and the only thing really lost at this point were any comments made since June. Which is sad, but eh…them’s the breaks.

In the meantime, enjoy this visually uninteresting youtube vid of RL Burnside doing a cover of Dylan’s “Everything Is Broken”.

From The Archives: Doc & Merle Watson – Freedom Park July 4th 1980

Speaking of The Cuckoo and the 4th of July, here is a fantastic show from the late Doc Watson. Doc Watson was a true american icon and legend…he is greatly missed.

Click the album art to go to the original post for download

The Cuckoo (She’s A Pretty Bird)

Well I had intended to do a couple posts but we had a pretty bad wind storm here at the ATS offices which fortunately did not knock the power out (most others in the area were not so lucky), but did knock the internet out. So as not to leave you postless, and on this 4th day of July I leave you with one of my favorite songs of all time…The Cuckoo. This is as performed by Richard Thompson, Garth Hudson, and Eliza Carthy for the 2001 Harry Smith Project, kind of taking the song back to it’s English roots. Now I could go on for a long time about Harry Smith and how important Harry Smith’s Anthology of Folk Music is, I won’t right here, but I encourage anyone interested in authentic American traditional music to purchase it….and study it like a bible.

http://www.harrysmitharchives.com/

Free Music Alert: Sons Of Bill – Live Acoustic EP

Charlottesville, Virginia’s Sons Of Bill are back with a new album called Sirens and they have launched a new webstore on their site. To celebrate this, they have decided to give away an live acoustic EP that is quite good. Listen/download here.

Sons of Bill are also currently touring the east coast, catch ‘em live if you can, and make sure to check out the official video below for the excellent Santa Ana Winds off the new album Sirens and also on this free EP.

sonsofbill.com | facebook | twitter | youtube

American Aquarium @ Kirk Avenue Music Hall 4/19/12

Gonna show I’m not effing around this time and get this train a rollin’. First let me talk about this show a bit, see I was at this show…I actually recorded this. Yes, this is my first attempt at being a “taper” (don’t think they make quotation marks big enough) so please bear with me, I’m still a little rusty at this (and I have no idea what that brief weird ass shaking noise at the beginning is).

Now, American Aquarium were a band I wasn’t overly familiar with but I knew them and I knew they were good. They were a band that on more than one occasion I found myself looking at my player when one of their songs would come up on shuffle. So I decided to drive up to Roanoke for this weeknight show, which I wouldn’t normally do, having to work for a living and all, but luckily it was also a relatively early show with a showtime starting at 7pm. This was part of Roanoke’s unfortunately named but wonderful Down By Downtown festival and took place at the crown jewel of the Star City’s music venues, Kirk Avenue Music Hall.

Kirk Avenue is by far the finest music venue in the greater Roanoke valley, yes better than Jefferson Center (it’s more intimate). The sound is always great, the crowd is always great, and they do a damn good job of pulling in great artists night after night.

So back to this show, these guys blew me away. Fantastic band, and lead singer B.J. Barnham is quite the songwriter and frontman. He writes in truth, as a matter of fact about midway through the set I was thinking to myself, “damn…some girl must have really shit on this guy.” Later in the show, while introducing the song “I Hope He Breaks Your Heart”, we find out it was a former fiance named Teresa Nicole Plank. You can probably guess where that relationship went, but I think we should all thank Teresa for providing the inspiration for such an amazing song as Tennessee (track 4).

The band is getting ready to release a brand new album in August and it’s produced by a guy you may have heard of named Jason Isbell. That should give these guys a pretty good bump, and if the new songs they played this night (including a kickin’ cover of Abe Lincoln) are any indication, they may not even need it.

If you want to get an idea of what this show was like, I urge you to watch the video below. Where lead singer B. J. Barnham goes on a nice little rant about Levon Helm’s death, Toby Keith, shitty country music, the dangers of cocaine, and the joys of adderall before playing Road To Nowhere. Just beautiful.

Click the cover image to download the audio. American Aquarium are currently on tour in the southeast so be sure to catch them.

americanaquarium.net | facebook | twitter | reverbnation

Oh, one more thing…I uploaded this to Mediafire, which is not my preference but there is no better option right now. Just make sure you click on the big Download button in the middle of the screen under the filename and not the stupid spammy one in the upper right. Enter the captcha and go, hopefully not too annoying.

State of the music industry, this site, etc…

Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past few days I’m sure you’ve heard of this open letter that David Lowry has written about the current state of affairs within the music industry, particularly regarding illegal downloading. The letter raises some damn good points, and regardless of what you think about it (there have already been many rebuttals), it has gotten a discussion started that needed to be started. The proverbial elephant in the room if you will.

Now a good bit of this letter hit home as over this past year or so I have become friends with a few area musicians and from that began to question some of my practices in the past. Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve always been about trying to get artists exposure and to turn people on to new music, but I’ve often done so without regard to how the actual artist feels about it. This has posed a moral dilemma for me. On one hand I want to respect the artists wishes, it is their art after all, and on the other I want to give the readers of this site some actual substance.

In the past I have went with a “beg for forgiveness” stance on this. That is, if an artist has a problem with something I have posted, I will gladly remove it, and I have in those instances. Now I am not exactly sure how I will be moving forward but I am going to try to be more sensitive to the artists wishes themselves. Oh damn did I just say “sensitive”, fuck I must be growing up. This is what fatherhood does people!

Look for more on this in the upcoming weeks, and believe it or not I actually have quite a few things I’ve been meaning to post. Likely won’t be any mixes until I sort this out but I will do my best to re-post some of the requested boots.

And I also want to thank you guys for sticking it out with me during these sloooooow days. I’m not gonna make any promises to yall because at this point I’ve broken more promises than a backsliding meth head.

-Matt

Fred McDowell – Woke Up This Morning (With My Mind On Jesus)

I came across this wonderful song on youtube sometime last year, and the “hallelu-hallelu” refrain has been going through my head most of the day today. It took quite a bit of digging through my internet history and brain to find it but here it is, thought I would share. If there is “A Truer Easter 2″ you can bet this will be on it.

From The Archives: A Truer Easter

Was recently informed that this was a fantastic Easter mix, and upon further review I am inclined to agree, however biased that opinion may be. Click the cover image below to go to the original post for download (and to read about the significance of the cover image) or stream from the mixtape widget below.

Lydia Loveless – More Like Them

Still trying to catch up on 2011 music and thoroughly enjoying Lydia Loveless

lydialoveless.com/ | facebook |