“The House is Rockin'” – Stevie Ray Vaughan – “In Step” (1989)

Mar 1
Posted by admin Filed in Blues, Rock and Roll Heaven

The chatter persists that there could be NHL in Seattle within the next couple of years. The only thing better on a cold, winter night than HNIC would be HNIS. I’ll take this as entry and final horn victory music.


“I Just Want to Make Love to You” – Muddy Waters – “England’s Newest Hitmakers (1964)

May 27
Posted by admin Filed in Blues

Memorial Day weather in Seattle that feels like it should be Veteran’s Day weather makes me want to hunker down with a shot o’ whiskey chased with an extra blanket.

Starting tomorrow, summer – the unofficial summer that is book ended by the three day weekends – is upon us. About three years ago, I heard the stomach churning stat that Americans eat nine billion hot dogs between Memorial Day and Labor Day. If every (fat and skinny) man, woman, and child chip in and do their part, that’s roughly 28 wieners per fatty. Damn we’re a disgusting lot.


“Small Bright Doses” – Winterpills – “All My Lovely Goners” (2012)

May 21
Posted by admin Filed in Blues, Folk, Indie

This is a beautiful song in the key of mourning. We only get so many chances and it sounds like the protagonists in the snapshot of time portrayed in this song are spending many a day recounting one of those chances, by all indications a lost opportunity.

It’s a new week. Make the most of your opportunities.


“Sunny Weather” – Karen Lovely – “Still The Rain” (2010)

May 8
Posted by admin Filed in Blues

Just sitting around listening to some blues tonight while perusing the Bumbershoot line up which was announced this morning.

Saturday looks solid. I would love to see Jane’s Addiction. I’ve seen The Heavy and Damien Jurado and would be down to check ’em out again. Sera Cahoone, TheeSatisfaction, and M. Ward are the others on the schedule that make Saturday look attractive.

There’s nothing that makes Monday a day that I have to attend. M83 would be cool, I’m decidedly not a fan of The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, and The Vaselines would be fun.

Guess that makes Sunday the day for me. Tony Bennett on the main stage will be a great show and super fun just to check out what I’m sure will be a very diverse crowd. Blitzen Trapper does nothing but churn out great music. Wanda Jackson & The Dusty 45’s, The Young Evils, Mudhoney, and Karen Lovely give me lots of quality choices. And then of course, the cool thing about Bumbershoot for a music lover like myself is that if I can’t get into a venue to see one of my top choices, I can just walk in on something that I know not a lick about. The ticket prices at Bumbershoot keep on going up but there still is a lot of value there if you’re not genre and marquee oriented. I really had no intentions on sitting in on Leon Russell last year but am I ever glad that I did. I saw 40+ band play live last year and Russell and his guys put on the best show that I saw of all of those acts.

Yeah, I’ll take some Karen Lovely and if not, maybe The Ty Curtis Band will be good.


“Little Wing” – Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble – “The Sky is Crying” (1991)

Apr 28
Posted by admin Filed in Blues, Rock and Roll Heaven

A legend covering a legend. A recipe for perfection.

Enjoy your weekend everyone.


“Old Number Seven” – The Devil Makes Three – “The Devil Makes Three” (2002)

Feb 8
Posted by admin Filed in Bluegrass, Blues, Folk, Indie

“Lucia had always wanted to play bass,” says Pete. “Cooper and I had already rented a stand-up bass for the group. And the main reason we were really excited about letting her give it a shot was because she didn’t know how to do anything we didn’t want her to do. And our music is simple, so the last thing that we wanted was someone who was overplaying for fear it would ruin the songs.

– Pete Bernhard, Devil Makes Three frontman on adding bassist Lucia Turrino to the line up several years ago.

I love that. These controlling bastards rounded out their little trio with some girl who appears to have a low ceiling which could help the band get their feet under them while they turn out a couple of records, or until the girl acquires some more skills and confidence and spreads her wings. How many times do you hear of a band imploding because of artistic differences? Pete and Cooper (McBean) preemptively snipped that potentially cancerous matter before it could even begin to think of destroying their band. This should be taken as a blue print for how to build a cohesive band especially if the pieces that you need to add are rhythm section who typically don’t have a huge say in the creative process anyways. Find a coachable person of minimal talent who’s passionate about learning a craft, get them up to speed on pounding out a rhythm and keeping time, then use the extra peace and quiet that you’ve afforded yourself to immerse yourself in creating music. These guys must have done well in chem class as well as music.


“You Ain’t Alone” – Alabama Shakes – EP (2011)

Feb 2
Posted by admin Filed in Blues

Step into a room that’s fairly small – but big enough for a couple hundred music fans – with Ms. Brittany Howard and you will quickly learn that this lady will demand, earn, and hold your attention. The lead singer/rhythm guitar of the rapidly rising Alabama Shakes dominated the scene last night at the Crocodile Cafe. She teed it up and hit it out of the park repeatedly last night over the course of about 75 minutes.

A few people who aren’t familiar with The Shakes asked me today to describe their sound. They’re about equal parts rock and roll and blues with about two cups of “southern,” a half cup of outlaw country, and a half cup of gospel. The band is steady, professional, and passionate. Howard will pull your spirits up if you’re feeling down, and make you reflect if you’re feeling a little too full of yourself. She’s got a little of three different gals who you don’t need to know surnames for to know who I’m talking about: Aretha, Janis, and Alanis. Check out The Alabama Shakes in your town while you can still see them in a cozy venue with paying customers numbering no more than three digits. Those days won’t last too much longer because this fivesome is about to move into bigger halls and collect much larger pay checks.


“Cry Like A Rainy Day” – Etta James – “Love’s Been Rough on Me” (1997)

Jan 21
Posted by admin Filed in Blues, Rock and Roll Heaven

I saw Etta James in concert sometime in the early 90’s. It’s kind of foggy as to exactly what year it was but it was kind of book ended by Nevermind dominating Seatown and “In Utero” and the tour in support of that record (and the ticket to the show at the Mercer Arena that I ended up selling for some bizarre reason that probably revolved around me wanting to have electricity or water at my house). Ms. James played the Exhibition Hall at The Seattle Center which is kind of a weird venue for concerts unless they are on the Bumbershoot bill over Labor Day weekend. It was a fundraiser if I remember correctly for AIDS/HIV awareness and prevention and a friend of mine scored tickets and we went to listen to the big, sassy mama do her thing. She was great, as you can imagine. She was nasty and lewd, and you’re probably not surprised. She didn’t have a whole bunch of slow swoony “At Last” moments and she rocked the house, and you know that you need to go listen to the rest of her catalog.

Jamesetta Hawkins passed away today at the age of 73. She won six Grammys over the course of her career, and is ranked as the 22nd best singer of all time by Rolling Stone. Her hey day, and greatest commercial success was fairly brief and paltry relative to her huge talent and the respect that she has earned by her peers and fans. I don’t make bucket lists for musical artists that I want to see based on their hall of fame credentials or just so that I can say that I saw them before they passed. I go to acts that I am: curious about, in awe of, or because they just so happen to play what I really dig at the present time. I would honestly have to say that when I went to see Etta James, I was curious about her; and by the time she was done making every man, woman (hopefully no children were there), wall, and ceiling tile of the Seattle Center’s Exhibition Hall sweat , I was in awe of her.

RIP Etta James


“No Traces of You” – Pete Molinari – “Streetcar Named Desire” – EP (2010)

Jan 18
Posted by admin Filed in Blues, Classic Country, UK

It’s a good find when you can browse the racks at your local record store and find a lad of Maltese/Italian/Egyptian descent who grew up in jolly old England and serves up a well aged, bluesy, Nashville country sound. If that sounds like something that might interest you, Pete Molinari could be your guy.

The first show that I went to last year was Bobby Long at The Tractor. I’m kind of lumping them together because they both play a brand of music that is more American, honky tonk, blues than what you typically get out of a young guy in the UK. They’re refreshing acts because they broaden the base of the genre by keeping it young and taking it international.


“Lonely Boy” – The Black Keys – “El Camino”

Nov 18
Posted by admin Filed in Blues, Duos

The Black Keys new album is due out in about three weeks (December 6th) and for a little preview check ’em out on SNL on December 3rd. Of the 40+ bands that I’ve seen live in the last 12 months, I’d have to put these guys in the top three. Get the album, watch SNL, go to their show when they come to town; if you like bluesy, hard edged guitar rock, you will not be disappointed.