“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.


“The Tourist” – Sarah Jarosz – “Follow Me Down” (2011)

Aug 30
Posted by admin Filed in Bluegrass

Last spring, I made a comment in a post about a cover of a Radiohead song that I heard by a young and talented, Grammy nominated performer. About a month later, Sarah Jarosz’s sophomore album was released, and there it was, track # 8 “The Tourist” which was originally part of Radiohead’s “OK Computer.” I guess it’s kind of shifting too much attention to the cover as the rest of Jarosz’s album lives up to the expectations that I’m sure many people had, but apparently I’ve got a soft spot for Radiohead covers. First, it was Duncan Sheik, then Gillian Welch, and now this.

The songs are vintage, cloudy, unsettled, unfit for mass consumption Radiohead songs. Each of the performers can genuinely play from the same murky, human places that most Radiohead songs come from which gives everything a good mesh. It’s not too late to play the two Sarah Jarosz albums front to back and engrave them into your memory, catch a show or two and say you’ve been there from the beginning. If you like your twang a little more pointed towards alt-bluegrass, give Ms. Jarosz a shot. Those Radiohead guys aren’t too bad either.