Ian 'Mac' McLagan
In memory of my dear pal Mac:
Ian ‘Mac’ McLagan was a genuine, dyed-in-the-wool rock’n’roller. In fact, his smiling visage — he was, after all, a member of the Small Faces and the Faces — would serve as an ideal illustration in the proverbial Dictionary of What Is Truly Cool.
The man known to his many mates and even more fans and admirers as 'Mac' is the sort who shruged off such puffery. He carried on creating splendid and genuine rock’n’roll with his Bump Band as well as musically aid and abet a marquee line-up of truly blue ribbon talent that he toured and recorded with: The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, Bruce Springsteen, Taj Mahal, John Hiatt, David Lindley, Paul Westerberg, Billy Bragg and Patty Griffin, to name some but hardly all of the notables that McLagan had worked with over his four-plus decade career.
Larry Seaman is an Austin based singer-songwriter, guitarist and assemblage artist. He is the founder of Standing Waves, a seminal force in Austin’s punk/new wave scene at Raul’s, Duke’s, Club Foot, and the Armadillo World Headquarters. His musical style is guitar-driven, melodic rock that is a product of Austin and Texas. It’s American music, with obvious British and New York influences, and ranges from psychedelic rock to gentle ballads to catchy pop songs. Larry is releasing his new album, Resurrectionist, on Friday, October 18, 2019 and will celebrate the release with a show on, Sunday, October 20, 2019, at the Saxon Pub. Before the release, he will perform a single release show, featuring “Gravedigger,” at the One-2-One Bar, Thursday, August 22, 2019. He will also be showing his assemblages at a pop-up art show at the Davis Gallery, on Saturday, October 12, 2019, and performing songs off of the new album.
Veteran singer-guitarist songwriter, Rick Eakens, from Las Cruces, New Mexico, has led The Footnotes, on and off, for most of his life, crafting the sound in his head into rootsy, high-energy rock 'n' roll that embodies the unpretentious attitude, catchy songcraft and high-energy abandon of the vintage classics that originally inspired him to make music.
Austin, TX based “power soul” group The Reputations recently recorded at Ardent Studios, the monumental Memphis recording space that has housed the creation of classic albums from Isaac Hayes, R.E.M., The Raconteurs, Albert Collins, ZZ Top, Jimmie and Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Big Star among countless others. After becoming a fan of The Reputations most recent and first LP Begging for More, Jody Stephens, original drummer of Big Star and manager of Ardent Studios, produced their upcoming album, marking his first endeavor under the title of producer.
Femme de Champagne
The Chicago based trio, Femme de Champagne are a seasoned assortment of musicians who explore pop songs with French sensibilities while weaving together rock, jazz, and folk styles to bring you a refreshing aperitif of entertainment. Babette Novak is the front woman and ultimate ring-leader of Femme de Champagne. She has traveled across the globe gathering knowledge and musical influences to form the eclectic mix of music that Femme de Champagne radiate. Their sound includes cabaret pop and liberal doses of power pop tossed around. The trio consists of Babette Novak (vocals, keyboards, guitars), Mike Collins (drums), and Fran Kondorf (bass). Femme de Champagne will be releasing their album, Impulsive Sky nationally on Friday, December 7, 2018.
Austin based singer-songwriter, Steve Power is an established, and versatile musical presence. With nimble hands he performs as a solo acoustic artist and with a six piece band which consists of some of the most respected players in Austin including, Pete "The Beat" Langhans (Drums), David Carroll (Upright Bass), Kris Brown (Guitar/Dobro), Haydn Vitera (Violin), Ron D'Argenio (Keyboards) and Joanna Ramirez (Backing vocals). Steve has had decades of continuous musical success playing live shows, releasing three albums, as well as two EPs. Steve is releasing his new album Power Lines on Friday, November 16, 2018 and performing on Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at the Saxon Pub.
Austin-based alternative Americana-roots singer and songwriter, Bruce Smith is “rockin’ ‘til the wheels fall off, come hell or high water.” Bruce believes that “if you have someone or something you love, you do whatever it takes,” so he writes about life, love, redemption and salvation. “‘59 Stratocaster” is a song from his fifth studio album, ‘Til The Wheels Fall Off, on Blackwall Records that has taken on a life of its own. The song recalls a visit Smith took with his wife to the Buddy Holly Museum where he saw the last guitar the deceased rock & roll legend ever played. “It’s about the guitar being on the bus, and going to the next gig when her master won’t be there,” reflects Smith. The single is a loving tribute to Buddy Holly, penned in the same spirit and under the same Texas sunshine where Buddy wrote many of his hits. Within a few months of Bruce Smith playing it in some of Austin’s hippest venues, Hollywood took notice and chose it to be featured in two major productions, a documentary and a romantic comedy inspired by Buddy.
Belcurve is a four to eight piece band from Austin originating from different parts of the US, bringing individual hometown influences to create their sound, which they call Psych-Americana. They fit in well and thrive in Austin because of their eclectic backgrounds, genre-range and lyrical themes.The band consists of Sarah Castro the mastermind behind it all (lead vocals, guitar), Matt Parmenter (bass, keyboards, producer), Jeff Black (guitar, bass, keys), Andrew Solin (guitar), Charlie Anderson (bass, violin) and Matt Booth (drums). Listeners can hear the influence of contemporary song-focused rock bands in their recordings and on stage. They like to get creative with synths and spacey/acid guitar sounds and vocal harmonies that stretch them into Pink Floyd territory.
Brittany Shane, is a singer songwriter from the small town of Baraboo, Wisconsin. She discovered her love for performing dance at the tender age of two and a half and started making music while attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her music is a blend of pop, rock and alt-country. Her songs are about love, loss and finding the strength to move on in the form of poetry. She is heavily influenced by Ryan Adams and Kathleen Edwards. Brittany is easily inspired by listening to music, it feeds her creativity and usually sparks a new, original song. Brittany will be releasing her sixth album, a self-titled, CD on August 12, 2018 at Central Market Westgate.
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J Burn, the shortened moniker for Jay Burn is a singer, songwriter residing in the San Francisco Bay Area. He grew up in the gruff and tumble of New Jersey where his roots sprouted out east, later in Colorado and before landing in California. J Burn was established back in 1996 writing songs and playing music in a high altitude town up in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Jay’s songwriting styles parallel his adolescent influences spanning multiple genres such as, Rock, Americana, Country, Folk, Punk and Psychedelia. Jay will be releasing Sunk Right Back nationally, on Friday, August 10, 2018. Sunk Right Back is a line from the chorus of his song, “Nothing,” which is on the new CD. “Listening deeper into the song and its message brings a sense of personal purpose to rise up and above and to not give in, or accept defeat.”
Texas writer Heather Bishop is a vocalist, songwriter, and multi–instrumentalist. Her current work is best described as roots music, with songs that linger in the crossroads of soul, folk, rock and country. As a guest artist, she has contributed vocals, strings, and percussion in genres ranging from Rock to Reggae, Bluegrass to Metal, Folk, Americana, and everything in between.
Of her first album Talkin' Fishbowl Blues, Amplifier says: "Not really a blues album, yet aptly tagged as "Black Americana", Manhattan-via-Austin super-side-woman Queen Esther melds roots, pop and R & B in a way Lucinda Williams, Melissa Etheridge and Sheryl Crow never could on their best days," while AllMusic says, "You’ll have to set your preconceptions aside for this one. Queen Esther is active in the theater and performance art worlds, sings the blues, sings jazz with the JC Hopkins Biggish Band, and now has offered up a great rock & roll album. Is there anything this woman can't do?" Produced by Queen Esther, The Other Side is her latest release – a sprawling sonic wonderland that walks with a soulful twang, full of feeling and longing and regret, while deeply abiding in the blues. Ultimately, this is an aural testimony to the music that raised Queen Esther and continues to inform her deeply held conviction that music shouldn’t be divisive.
On Light Shines Through composer-drummer Don Harvey merges diverse musical styles resulting in stunning genre-defying new music. Stefano Intelisano, Ruthie Foster, Ephraim Owens, David Grissom, David Broza, Glenn Fukunaga and Kevin McKinney shine brightly on this swirling mix of rock, world, jazz, ambient, soul & classical elements.
Photo by T Dimenno
September 2013, five Austin bands and more than a thousand friends and fans gathered at the Moody Theatre, home of the Austin City Limits television series, to pay tribute to Brent Grulke, the creative director of South By Southwest, who unexpectedly passed away at the age of 52.
Closing out Grulkefest were The True Believers, the band that Grulke had mixed sound for in their earliest days in 1984. The band fittingly gave their old friend a powerful sendoff by delivering a scorching set of three-guitar firepower that left the audience screaming for more, and the band feeling like they had some unfinished business to tend to.
The first songs of Shoulders co-founders Michael Slattery and Todd Kassens were conceived over bottles of generic gin in run-down Los Angeles apartments and New York walk-ups, and were taped on a True Tone cassette recorder, with additional percussion provided by the irritated pounding on the floor above or the ceiling below, and with sound effects provided by the blowing horns and screeching brakes on the streets outside their open windows.