This Tuesday California's Touche Amore return to Memphis for a show at the Hi-Tone. Joining them will be Tigers Jaw and Dads. Check out videos from all three bands below and make plans to be at the Hi-Tone Tuesday July 8th by 7:30 p.m. $13 dollars gets you in, all ages welcome.
Is there anything more American than rock and roll? Probably not. Here's a rundown of the many different ways to celebrate your independence by supporting local music this weekend. Shroud yourself in red white and blue, crack open some cold (American-made) beverages and then make plans to be at one (or more) of these events.
July 3rd - The Lamplighter: Native America, Loser Vision, Ugly Girls, $5, 10 p.m.
July 3rd - The Levitt Shell: Patriotic Pops with The Memphis Dawls, members of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, The Second Presbyterian Chancel Choir, Free, 7:30 p.m.
July 3rd- The Hi-Tone: Justin Toland's (of the Dirty Streets) 30th Birthday Bash with DJ's and the William Stull Band, free entry and free food, 9 p.m.
July 4th- The Hitone: Fourth of July bash with Tanks, Roundeye, DaiKaiju, Hombres, $5, 9 p.m.
July 4th- The Buccaneer: Fourth of July Party with Devil Train, other festivities, $5, 9 p.m.
July 5th- Amurica: "Big Bad Mamma Jamma No Excuses Dance Party," $5, BYOB, dancing starts at 10 p.m.
July 6th- Murphy's: Manateees, Mac Blackout Band, Liquid Teens, Modern Convenience, $5, 9 p.m.
Tonight at the Hi-Tone three local bands will get together to celebrate the release of Memphis Barbecue: A Succulent History of Smoke, Sauce & Soul, a new book by local writer Craig Meek.
"Music and BBQ are part of what make this city what it is,” Craig Meek said. “They are two things that bring people together, and two signature things that have always been a part of the fabric of this city.”
It makes perfect sense then that Meek would ask three of his favorite local bands to play his book release, those acts being Clay Otis and Shadowbrother, The Switchblade Kid and Dead Soldiers. Check out the Switchblade Kid video below (complete with a Craig Meek cameo), and make plans to be at the Hi-Tone tonight at 9 p.m. for smoked pork and rock and roll. The Hi-Tone pitmaster Richard Forrest will be smoking a whole hog.
Austin's Holy Wave comes to Bar DKDC tonight, touring in support of their new full-length Relax on the Reverberation Appreciation Society record label. If reverb-drenched psychedelic rock is your thing, make plans to get to DKDC by 10 p.m. tonight. Stream the entire Relax album below, and check out the video for "Wet and Wild" as well.
Local singer Marcella Simien will bring her Louisiana blues to Court Square downtown this Thursday, as part of the ongoing Court Square Concert Series. The performance is free, so grab some lunch downtown and make plans to be at Court Square between 11:45 a.m. and 1 p.m. Check out our feature on Marcella Simien here and watch a video of her playing live below.
With a lengthy bill of acts performing across several stages, no two Bonnaroo experiences are the same. And with overlapping band performances (and lots of walking to get from stage to stage), it’s difficult to be everywhere you want to be. But Bianca Phillips and I took in as much as we could. She’s posted a photo slideshow for your enjoyment, and here are some highlights from my adventure on the farm, in no particular order.
Memphis had a strong presence at Bonnaroo this year, starting with a special screening of “Take Me to the River” in the festival’s Cinema Tent on Thursday afternoon. Produced by Martin Shore, Cody Dickinson, and Dan Sameha, the film celebrates the inter-generational and inter-racial musical influence of Memphis in the face of pervasive discrimination and segregation. It features multiple generations of award-winning Memphis and Mississippi Delta musicians including William Bell, Mavis Staples, Otis Clay, Lil P-Nut, Charlie Musselwhite, Bobby "Blue" Bland, Yo Gotti, Bobby Rush, Frayser Boy, The North Mississippi All-Stars, and many more.
A Memphis treasure, Valerie June, performed to a modest yet fully engaged crowd at one of the event’s tent stages, This Tent, on Saturday. Enamoring the audience with her sweet Southern drawl, June shouted-out to Memphis a few times, noting that some of her songs began as earworms that she sang to herself while working at the herb shop, Maggie’s Pharm, and cleaning houses in Memphis just three years ago before she hit the big-time. Her brothers, Patrick and Jason, who she grew up singing with in church, took the stage with her and provided back-up vocals through several songs. She pulled out her “baby” — a Memphis-made banjo — for a few songs as she worked her way through many of the tracks on her breakout album Pushin’ Against a Stone, including “Workin’ Woman Blues”, “Somebody to Love”, and “Tennessee Time”.
Memphis’ own country-punk rock band Lucero played an early afternoon set on Sunday, but sadly I was unable to catch their performance. I’d be willing to bet they represented us well.
A personal favorite, New York-based indie/electro/pop duo MSMR — who also performed at the 2014 Beale Street Music Festival — played to a bursting-at-the-seams crowd at one of the festival’s tent stages, The Other Tent, Thursday night. The animated, pink-haired lead singer, Lizzy Plapinger, flitted across the stage, ecstatically powering through tracks from their 2013 debut album, Secondhand Rapture (including my favorite, “Dark Doo Wop,” which wasn’t included in the BSMF setlist). Before the set’s end, the duo’s other half, Max Hershenow, said to the crowd, “This is only our third year as a band, so we’re really fucking happy you’re here seeing us! Thank you so much for this!”
Bonnaroo is as much about discovering new music as it is about seeing your favorite bands, and this year, I discovered a gem. Though I had heard a song or two of theirs in passing before the festival, the Scottish, female-fronted electro-pop trio Chvrches drew me in with its shimmering synth and the delicate and melodic vocal stylings of the seemingly shy singer Lauren Mayberry. Mayberry spoke demurely to the audience between songs, once commenting on the variety of silly signs and flags jutting up from the crowd (I spotted an oversized Jack Nicholson head on a stick and a Kanye-heckling “Gay Fish” sign): “What is all of this stuff you guys are holding up? [Pointing at one of them] Is that supposed to be a dick?”
Adding to the list of female artists I enjoyed at the festival (I promise I didn’t just see the girly stuff), Fugees alumna Ms. Lauryn Hill performed a powerful set on Saturday, also at The Other Tent. Many audience members had camped out for hours to make their way to the front, and some had to be pulled out and over the front railings by security, as they were overheating waiting for the delayed set to start (nearly 30 minutes later than scheduled). When Hill arrived on stage, she and her backing band rocked out a cover of Bob Marley’s “Soul Rebel” and followed with revised versions of well-known tracks, including a reggae rendition of “Killing Me Softly” and a disco-inspired version of “Everything is Everything”.
And finally, the male-led groups! Atlanta-based metal band Mastodon performed a mind-melding, impossibly tight set at This Tent on Saturday. But not before the Flyer ran into them that afternoon in the press area. Guitarist Bill Kelliher has a Memphis connection, having been tattooed by Babak Tabatabai, owner of Ronin Design & Manufacturing on Broad Avenue. We chatted with Kelliher briefly, and he says they’ve been super busy touring. Not surprising since their new album, Once More ‘Round the Sun, is set for release later this month.
I caught the last few minutes of a chaotically energetic performance by Cage the Elephant. After recovering from (apparently one of many) technical difficulties (during which the band casually played riffs from a hip-hop tune), singer Matt Schultz danced around the stage before saying, “We have mostly been Cage the Elephant. We were briefly Dr. Dre. Now we’re back to Cage the Elephant.” During the last song, Schultz insisted on crowdsurfing despite security’s efforts to keep him on the performers’ side of the railing. He climbed over, more than once, at times standing upright on the hands of the eager crowd and came out mostly unscathed besides losing a shoe.
With all of the good music happening from sun up ‘til sun down, it was hard to catch every set, though I did also see a few minutes of Lionel Richie (“Easy Like Sunday Morning”!), Bobby Womack (“Across 110th Street”!), Cake (performing all the classics), and others. Another successful Bonnaroo for the books!
Bonnaroo 2014 Slideshow
Scenes from the 13th annual Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival in Manchester, Tennessee
To read about the 13th annual Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, check out Shara Clark's post on Sing All Kinds.
Louisiana's scariest export crawls out of the swamp for a performance at the Hi-Tone this Thursday night. Simply put, EYEHATEGOD have been one of the heaviest bands on the planet since they formed in 1988, releasing seminal albums like Take as Needed for Pain that helped define the sludge metal genre. This will be the first Memphis show in quite some time for the nice boys from New Orleans, who are also currently touring with Ringworm, an equally crushing metal band. Enabler from Milwaukee will kick off the show.
Check out videos from EYEHATEGOD and Ringworm below, and get ready to have your food digested when these guys crank up their amps this Thursday night at the Hi-Tone. 8 p.m. doors, $15 gets you in.
Local metal act Nights Like These play their third show since 2008 this Saturday, with all the proceeds going to local animal shelters. The band released two well received albums on Victory Records, then called it quits in 2008 after crisscrossing the United States on tours where they opened for some of the biggest underground metal acts in the Country. We caught up with Matt Qualls (who has also produced local acts like Cities Aviv and The Dirty Streets) to ask him about the latest chapter in the Nights Like These story.
So this is one of your first shows since the group disbanded. What made you guys decide to get back together?
We decided to get back together after I was about to graduate college in 2013. It was just the perfect time to get back together to do a reunion show. Originally the idea was to do a one time performance, but after we started having a weekly practice we ended up writing a new song, which is featured on the split called "Ox Plow." We thought the song was one of the strongest songs we have ever written and just said "Screw it, let's do another record, for ourselves at least."
The show on Saturday is a release show for your new split EP with The Lions Daughter. How did you link up with those guys? Is there more new material coming?
We know The Lions Daughter through touring with two of the members previous band, Calico System. They have always kept in touch with us and we've remained good friends through the years. This whole concept of the split going to no-kill animal shelters was all their idea. Rick, the guitar player from The Lions Daughter pretty much facilitated the entire record being pressed and all the details that go into it. To answer your second question; Yes, we do plan to release one more album. We have no idea when it will be ready but we know that fans will not be disappointed.
All of the proceeds from the show are going to the Streetdog Foundation, Blue Sky Animal Rescue, and the Bailey Arms Animal Rescue. How did you work that out? Did the band approach these animal shelters or did they approach you guys?
Like I said before, the entire concept was pitched to me by Rick. We just handled the Memphis side of things. We played last Saturday in St. Louis and the show raised around $1600 for their shelters. I pretty much had to contact all of the shelters in Memphis myself, with the recommendation and help of friends Shawn Mullins and Brittney Legens. All of the shelters were more than excited to be apart of the benefit and record release.
Do you hope to turn more of your shows into charitable events, or is this more of a one-time thing?
We don't have any more benefit shows lined up at the moment, but we certainly aren't opposed to idea. But as far as organizing an event like this, I would say no, we do not plan to do it again.
You guys used to be one of the hardest touring bands in Memphis, do you have any plans to take your music out of town again? Any other upcoming shows you'd like to announce?
We currently have no plans of any shows either in Memphis or elsewhere. We would certainly like to play out of town more often and have many friends in regional areas, but the act of getting us all together to go out of town for a whole weekend is pretty difficult as we all have other things going on in our lives.
Nights Like These with The Lions Daughter and Chaos Order this Saturday at the Hi-Tone Cafe, $5, 7 p.m. doors.
Kalamazoo's premier skate-punk band roll through Memphis this Saturday, riding high off of their newly released album, Epyx Shredder. Joining them at the Hi-Tone will be locals Manateees and Buldgerz. Check out videos from Manateees and No Bails below, and be sure to catch all three bands live this Saturday the 14th in the small room of the Hi-Tone. $5 gets you in, show starts at 10 p.m.
The 13th annual Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, which happens to fall during a full moon on a Friday the 13th, kicks off on Thursday, June 12th and runs through Sunday, June 15th in Manchester, Tennessee.
Elton John, Kanye West, Jack White, Lionel Richie, and Vampire Weekend are headlining a massive bill that includes a number of festival first-timers and lesser-known acts as well as a handful of veterans that have become festival favorites.
Psychedelic rock band The Flaming Lips, rapper Wiz Khalifa, and EDM DJ Skrillex are making comeback appearances. In fact, Skrillex will lead one of Bonnaroo's legendary Superjams along with Big Gigantic, Damien Marley, DJ Zedd, Janelle Monae, Chance the Rapper, and Robbie Kreiger of the The Doors.
Other acts include indie-pop duo MS MR, late-'90s indie rockers Neutral Milk Hotel, South African rap-rave duo Die Antwoord, rapper Frank Ocean, Australian rockers Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, and English garage rockers Arctic Monkeys.
Two well-known Memphis acts will be making an appearance. Soulstress Valerie June is playing an early set at the modest This Tent on Saturday, and Lucero will be the opening act on the larger Which Stage on Sunday.
There's so much more to Bonnaroo than music though. Craig Robinson (The Office, Hot Tub Time Machine) is headlining in the comedy tent. There's a Friday the 13th costume party in Snake & Jake's Christmas Club Barn (a club in the main Centeroo area that celebrates the holidays in June with lights, reindeer, and a creepy Santa). And Friday the 13th will be screening in the Cinema Tent, where cult classics are shown throughout the weekend.
There's a Roo Run 5K for those who can actually wake up and run at 9 a.m. on a Bonnaroo Saturday, and a number of Yogaroo and meditation classes will be offered near the Solar Stage.
As for food, Bonnaroo is rolling out more dining options this year with Hamageddon, which we would assume is serving ham, and Baconland, where diners can sample "bacon flights with quality selections from around the country." The Food Truck Oasis, a food truck court with offerings from across the country, will be back this year, and craft beer lovers can sample brew from all over at the Broo'ers beer tent.
Three local heavyweights will join forces this Friday for a blowout to remember at The Buccaneer. While The Sheiks and James and the Ultrasounds have been playing consistently for sometime now, a rare appearance by The Warble should make for a memorable evening. Check out videos from each band playing below, and make sure you get to The Buccaneer on Friday the 13th with $5 bucks in your hand by 9 p.m.
In 1984, Prince had just come off of a smash hit record two years earlier: the double album 1999, which spawned four top 10 Billboard hits and sold 4 million copies. The success convinced Warner Brothers to produce a film to go with his next release. Director Albert Magnoli, a Prince associate, was tapped to direct the film, which would be a music video-inspired musical to capitalize on the craze that MTV had spawned two years before. The first hint America got of the Prince juggernaut that would dominate the airwaves for the rest of the decade was the revolutionary “When Doves Cry”, released on May 9, 1984, with a video that featured chunks of montage taken straight from the film famously intercut with shots of Prince naked in a bathtub.