Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Peter Wolf on the Prowl at the Infinity Music Hall

Peter Wolf, of The J. Geils Band fame, brought his Midnight Travelers to the Infinity Music Hall and Bistro in Norfolk CT Saturday night May 22 for what could only be described as one hell of a show! Wolf will return to his role as The J. Geils Band’s front man on August 14 for a gig at Fenway Park in Boston opening for another famous Boston Band-Aerosmith. But until then he’s out promoting his new CD, the first in eight years, “Midnight Souvenirs.”
Wolf played from 9 pm until 10:15 then commenced to do 30 minutes of encores! The setlist included:
'Growin’ Pain'
'Long Line'
'Long Way Back Again'
Then he gave a nod to the Everly Brothers and played 'I’m Always Asking For You'
'I Don’t Want to Know'
He told the crowd the story of first meeting Muddy Waters at Club 47 where he waited outside for Muddy to drive up and when he did, Muddy thought he was with the club and told Peter to start unloading the amps! Wolf continued the story by describing being in the bathroom with Otis Spann and James Cotton as Cotton was trying to explain to Spann that a “Coffeehouse” doesn’t serve liquor. Spann was very disappointed so Wolf volunteered to go buy some Whiskey! The story led into “Homework.”

Wolf plowed into another story about John Lee Hooker.  Hooker was playing at the Odyssey Coffeehouse and being paid by the door—it held 300 people but only 40 people were there, so Wolf asked if his band at the time “The Hallucinations” could play too. Hooker agreed and ask Wolf to meet him at the Lennox Hotel after the show. Wolf gets there and there’s the great John Lee Hooker lying on one bed, his guitar carefully taking up the other bed and Hooker watching “Lassie” on TV. Hooker turned to Wolf and said “That Lassie is one mutherfuckin’ smart dog!”

“Cry One More Time” followed
“Greenfields of Summer” (which he recorded with Neko Case)
“Wastin’ My Time”
“Tragedy” (recorded with Shelby Lynne)

He got the crowd dancing in the aisles with “Night Time” and talked to the crowd about smoking medicinal cigarettes and watching the Weather Channel for like 3 hours  and calling your friends cuz’ there’s clouds over the Midwest and it’s the greatest thing your ever saw!

He dedicated the next song to drinking Ballantine Ale XXX and Willie Deville-“Riverside Drive.”

The crowd jumped to their feet again when the Travelers played two notes of “Love Stinks”. Wolf kept them on their feet with “Lookin’ For Love.” Wolf closed the set with Will Jenning’s “There’s Still Time.”

Wolf and the Midnight Travelers returned for Encores of:
“Waitin on the Moon”
“Musta Got Lost”
“Start All Over’
“First I Look At The Purse”
Wolf brought the evening to a close with only Duke Levine (in photo to the right) and Kevin Barry on stage with him as he sang the song on his new CD that he recorded with Merle Haggard-“ It’s too Late For Me.”

I was lucky enough to see Wolf twice on this CD tour and I can only hope to see him a few more times. This guy can still “Blow Your Face Out!”

Roy Sludge opened for Wolf. He played for 30 minutes and included classics like Cash’s “Ring of Fire’; Merle Travis’ “16 Tons” and The Fraternity of Man’s “Don’t Bogart Me (That Joint)” which he turned into a sing-a-long with the crowd. When the men sang alone Sludge said “It sounds like a sausage factory in here.” He closed with Maine native Dick Curliss’ “Tombstone Every Mile.”

More Photos by Nanci from the Infinity Music Hall Show are posted on: http://www.photosbynanci.com/wolfinfinity.html

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Grace Potter at the Bull Moose, Scarborough ME May 27 4-5 PM

Grace Potter and probably a Nocturnal will perform a short acoustic set followed by an autograph signing at the Bull Moose Record Store in Scarborugh ME. Pre-Order at Bull Moose their upcoming CD "Grace Potter and the Nocturnals " (coming June 8) at any Bull Moose location to get VIP treatment at the event. You'll get the best view of the performance and go to the front of the autograph line.

This appearance is prior to the Grace Potter and the Nocturnals May 27 at the Port City Music Hall in Portalnd ME!! Tickets are on sale now! BUY 

© 2010 Photos by Nanci  www.photosbynanci.com

Blues and Lasers will open the Port City Music Hall show!

More photos of Grace Potter and the Nocturnals can be viewed at: http://www.photosbynanci.com/gracepotter.html

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Ronnie James Dio--Dead at 67

R.I.P. DIO!!!

Full story at: CNN News Blog

The Dancing Queens were out for Bjorn Again

Bjorn Again
Lebanon Opera House
Lebanon NH May 14, 2010
Sponsored by Lake Sunapee Bank

Climb aboard and take a trip back to the 1970s. ABBA a Swedish rock band was hugely popular, crazy polyester clothes were in style and DISCO was all the rage. An unlikely time machine took us there Friday evening May 14, the Lebanon Opera House.

The crowd was smiling, holding hands and singing all through the night. The ushers commented on what a great show this was, they’d never before witnessed so much dancing and shear enjoyment by an opera house audience. And the reason for all this joy…BJORN AGAIN.

Bjorn Again is a group/troupe founded in 1988 in Australians by John Tyrell and Rod Leissle. Bjorn Again has performed over 5000 shows in over 50 countries; they have even played at the Royal Albert Hall and at Russell Crowe’s Wedding! They have opened for such acts as: Shania Twain, Cher and the Spice Girls. And on Friday night they hit the Lebanon Opera House Stage!

Their set list  included: Waterloo, Gimmie Gimmie/Supertrooper, Honey Honey, SOS, Ring Ring, Fernando, I Have A Dream, Chiquitita, Money  Money, Mama Mia and of course the signature ABBA song-Dancing Queen. They even tossed in a Journey song “Don’t Stop Believin’” during which a wildly dressed fan rushed the stage and hugged “Bjorn.”

This show was fun trip down memory lane and even the ushers were dancing in the aisles!!
More photos from the Bjorn Again performance can be viewed at: http://www.photosbynanci.com/bjornagain.html

Sprightly Steps Presented by Adam Boyce

Sprightly Steps
Presented by Adam Boyce
May 13, 2010
Martin Memorial Hall
Hosted by the Weathersfield Proctor Library

Adam Boyce, a fiddler and Eastern Square Dance Caller, journeyed to Ascutney VT Thursday evening May 13 to talk to the town folk about the history of country style dance. Boyce explained to the crowd that dancing was brought to America by the Pilgrims (who were not the same as Puritans, hence the dancing).

As more immigrants crossed the sea, various styles of “peasant” dance were incorporated into the styles of New England dancing. The Irish brought the jig. “Not many people know how to dance the jig but many fiddlers know how to play a jig”, said Boyce. Most dancing back in the 17th and early 18th centuries was performed by the peasants; dancing was an easy affordable form of entertainment for folks with little or no money.

Soon Dance Masters started to “teach” dancing and many dance schools open across the United States. A Dance master would arrive in town, instruct for a week at a local hotel or meeting hall and finish the week off with a “ball” to show off what the students had learned.

Boyce took the attendees through the evolution of the early New England dancing, covering the origins of the Irish “Jig’ as mentioned above, the Scottish “Reel”, the “Horn Pipe” which was made popular by the sailors who blew on a cow horn and tapped a little bell attached to the horn and the “Quadrill”, a French country dance that evolved into the square dance, almost like a “drill-type” of dancing. After each explanation, Boyce would demonstrate the music type on his fiddle.

Dancing spread as the people moved out of New England; ladies had their dance cards to be filled with the dances performed that evening and with the names of their partners. Promoters would call the changes, to keep the dance moving; the floor managers oversaw the dancers, ballroom etiquette was very strict at the time. Distance from your partner was enforced by the floor manager.

Dances would begin in the early evening and go until midnight when the crowd would break for supper, usually a lavish spread of food, then continue on until folks needed to get to their daily chores. Dances could last 16 hours or more!

Boyce explained the two types of Square Dancing-Western and Eastern. “Western Square” dancing is of a standard form, you can dance it any where in the world as the calls are the same, the class levels are the same and they are all called in English” said Boyce. “Eastern Square” Dance on the other hand is regional and can vary from town to town.

While “Country” dancing continued in the rural areas of the US, the cities began to see an emergence of the Big Band and Jazz sound and soon to follow Rock and Roll took hold. Country style dance began to die out as did the Friday night dance hall.

There are still a few places that host the Friday night dance parties in places like West Newbury VT and Wentworth NH but they are becoming scarce as the musicians and callers are getting older.

Boyce is a Vermont Humanities speaker and welcomes questions about Fiddling and Square Dancing; he can be reach at adamboyce@juno.com.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tweet for a John Hiatt Video

Download a free video of John Hiatt's "My Baby" from by sending a TWEET from @newwestrecords: http://www.newwestrecords.com/tweet-for-track/

It's really a good video!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tom Petty Debuts new Video: I Should Have Known It

Sorry about the ad...if you know how to remove it...let me know!

Can't wait to see TB &the HBs this summer!!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

New album: Blues & Lasers delivers classic rock

From the Times Argus


By TOM HUNTINGTON Arts Correspondent - Published: May 7, 2010

The success and studio accomplishments of Vermont's own Grace Potter and the Nocturnals have clearly had a positive effect on the music and songwriting skills of three of its members – guitarists Scott Tournet and Benny Yurco and drummer Matt Burr – who together kick out the blues-rock jams in their own five-piece band, Blues & Lasers.

Known for its incendiary live shows, the group – which also includes drummer Steve Sharon (yes, the group has two drummers) and bassist/keyboardist John Rogone – has seriously stepped up its game, judging by the results of its sophomore CD, "After All We're Only Human."

Instantly noticeable are the group's tighter song structures, more defined melodies and enhanced vocal skills. This is especially apparent when compared to its 2008 live debut EP, a five-song, 40-minute set of raw and hard-charging yet hypnotic Delta blues-driven rock excursions.

While the new nine-song, 50-minute album of originals retains the gritty, bar-burning energy that's been part and parcel of the group's sound since forming in 2007, Blues & Lasers delivers a more accessible, classic rock sound that evokes vintage '70s-era blues-rock while adding its own signature touch.

"After All" roars out of the gate with the solid one-two-punch of powerhouse openers "Give it a Try" and "Fallen Friend." The former is an infectious standout that rides a sultry blues-rock groove while employing distorted vocals and dual-guitar classic-rock riffs to great effect. The latter, one of four tunes written by Yurco, is a catchy rocker that calls to mind "Exile on Main Street"-era Rolling Stones, with Yurco's vocals even conjuring Keith Richards.

The album's closing tunes are also highlights. The Yurco-penned "Somewhere on the Road" is a rollicking rocker – complete with "ooh" and "la la la" background vocals – that recalls early Wilco. Closer "Take You Down" – one of only two seven-minute songs – is reminiscent of Neil Young and Crazy Horse, with searing guitar work by Tournet and Yurco, who somehow marry different guitar styles with stellar results.

Crazy Horse – and maybe even a little Blue Oyster Cult – is also invoked on the other seven-minute tune, the album's title track, with dreamy vocal harmonies a la more modern band My Morning Jacket.

Which is not to say that "After All" is entirely derivative; somehow, the members of Blues & Lasers make it their own. This is especially true on another Yurco tune, "Forget About Me," which serves up dirty, tweaked-out blues-rock as only Blues & Lasers can deliver it. Ditto the mesmerizing blues of "Glory" and "Before You Use Me."

Still, if you like good, original blues-rock with a classic sensibility, you'll likely really like the new Blues & Lasers album.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Peter Wolf ROCKS Tupelo Music Hall

Welcome Back PETER WOLF!!

Londonderry, NH May 9, 2010

Peter Wolf, the legendary front man for the J. Geils Band, is on the road promoting his new CD “Midnight Souvenirs”. He opened the tour Mother’s Day evening at the Tupelo Music Hall in Londonderry NH.

His 20 plus set list included many from “Souvenirs” including: “I Don’t Want To Know”, “Thick as Thieves” which he prefaced by saying it was about “the music industry but let’s not go there”, “The Green Fields of Summer”, and his first single off the CD which he recorded with Shelby Lynne “Tragedy”.

He also sang a few from his previous solo release “Sleepless” including “Growin’ Pain” which he opened with, and one of two encores with “Nothing But the Wheel” which melted into “Musta Got Lost”.
Wolf dug back into his past further and really got the SOLD OUT crowd rocking with the old Geils tunes he performed. “Homework”, “NiteTime”, “Love Stinks”, and “Give it to Me”. Wolf mentioned numerous times that this was the maiden voyage of the Midnight Travelers but it was truly hard to tell that this band hasn’t been together for a long time. The Traveler's are made of some very well known musicians: Duke Levine-guitars, Jon Carroll-keys, Marty Richards-drums, Marty Ballou-bass, and Kevin Barry-guitars. 
The tour moves on to Northampton’s Iron Horse May 11 and Portland’s Port City Music Hall May 12. It moves to the Midwest then returns to New England May 22 to the Infinity Music Hall Norwalk CT May 22, Providence RI Lupo’s May 23 and Boston’s Wilbur Theatre May 25.

 More PHOTOS BY NANCI photos of Peter Wolf  can be viewed at: http://www.photosbynanci.com/peterwolf.html

The Roy Sludge duo opened. They played 30 minutes and had a Rock-a-billy sound that really got the crowd psyched for Peter Wolf.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Grace Potter hits the 'big time' with 'Medicine'

Story and Photo From the Times-Argus

By ART EDELSTEIN Arts Correspondent - Published: April 30, 2010
Here's a hot stock market tip. If Hollywood Records of Burbank is selling shares, buy them … a lot if you can afford it. OK, this isn't a finance column, but on the strength of the newest Grace Potter & The Nocturnals CD "Medicine," slated for release in June, this record company should do well as this album should be a big seller.

GPN has recorded a strong album. Thirteen tracks of pure, hard-driving, very danceable rock music places this quintet at the verge of national stardom. I don't make this suggestion casually. Potter has been given the Rodeo Drive touch. With long blonde tresses and skirts that barely cover, she is now a "babe."

Every effort has been made, at least in the promotion of this album, to scale back the jam band, Vermont-bred aspects of its Waitsfield origins. Potter's Nocturnals have also been reconfigured. There are two new members – Catherine Popper, also an attractive woman, replaces original bassist Bryan Dondero, and Benny Yurco has signed on as rhythm guitarist. Popper will sing harmony at concerts which means Potter's own back-up vocals on recordings can now be duplicated on stage.

Potter, now under the production guidance of Mark Batson who produced the Dave Matthews Band, shared songwriting with the producer. I'm not sure if Batson contributed lyrics, but the musical influence on these songs is fairly obvious. This is an album that zings with rock 'n' roll energy. Potter's singing is invigorated, and she appears to have channeled her inner Grace Slick, Bonnie Raitt, Janis Joplin and Aretha Franklin, along with generous helpings of Beyoncé and Alicia Keys.

Potter's vocals hold little back. It must be all the healthy air in the Mad River Valley, for she belts out song after song without ripping away her vocal chords. If Potter is trying to show the world that she is as dynamic a singer as the aforementioned women, she is close to accomplishing that goal. Perhaps the only problem is that she hasn't established exactly what her own voice is.

Hollywood Records, also home to Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers, is priming GPN for bigger stages than the band has played in the past. While the band isn't yet up to headline status like Phish was in its prime, the songs on this new album would certainly impress any audience.

Beyond Potter's powerful singing is a reinvigorated band. The Nocturnals were a good band when they were a trio backing Potter's keyboard and guitar work. Popper and Burr seem to click as the rhythm section, but what really has changed the band's sound is the interplay of Yurco and lead guitarist Scott Tournet. With a strong rhythm guitar to work off, Tournet is set free to explore the fretboard and the sonic possibilities of his electric guitar. He now delivers some blistering leads which add another layer of sound. Unfortunately, Potter's keyboard playing now takes a subordinate role on most of the tracks.

Many of the lyrics on this CD explore themes of relationship and sex. Potter is the good girl and the bad girl. She's tough, she's vulnerable, etc. Track six, "Colors," was written, she has said in interviews, the day after the 2008 election of Barack Obama as president. We wouldn't expect a band, whose lead singer has had a high-class makeover, to be crooning about collateralized debt obligations or Greece's near bankruptcy. This is music meant to get the body juices flowing and the unjaded out on the dance floor while selling lots of beer to the audience. I suspect when this album does hit the street and people put it in the car CD player there'll be a lot less texting going on as people's interest will be directed at Potter and her music instead of their cell phones.

New England Tour Dates Include:
Port City Music Hall, Portland ME , BUY Tickets May 27
House of Blues Boston, MA Buy Tickets May 28 with Anais Mitchell
Lebanon Opera House Lebanon NH Buy Tickets  May 29 A Benefit for Child and Family Services of NH 
Burlington Waterfront, Burlington VT August 14 Buy Tickets

Photos by Nanci photos of Grace Potter and the Nocturnals may be viewed at: http://www.photosbynanci.com/gracepotter.html