Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Local Artist Speaks: WATER TOWER BUCKET BOYS

The Water Tower Bucket Boys are three fellows who take bluegrass to a whole new level. Beyond the food stomping good time, the music these guys put together has been described as "both celebratory and faintly disturbing". I think that is quite a clever combination.

Meet....the Water Tower Bucket Boys!!!

Comments by band member, Josh Rabie.

How long have you lived in the Portland area?
We have all lived in the Portland area most of our lives, however, we started the band in Eugene. All of us went to college together at the University of Oregon.

Give us a brief history of your band/project:
Well as I mentioned we started getting serious about the band during our time at the UO in Eugene. Kenny and Cory played in a pop punk band together in high school (there hit song was, "Girls Dont Poop"), but that project fell through around the end of high school. Kenny and Josh started playing acoustic bluegrass and old time around the end of high school and by the time we all arrived at the UO the Water Tower Bucket Boys had begun. Josh and Kenny had known Cory for years, so he jumped on the band wagon and took over the banjo position. After college we wanted to get even more serious about playing music and this is now our career and our livelihood. We are best friends and have been together almost 5 years now. We started touring in Europe about 2 years ago and we now return to the British Isles every 6 months. We have a large dedicated following over there and the people are amazing. We also tour extensively along the west coast US. In addition to playing old time and bluegrass, we also play cajun, swing, jazz, and punk rock. Our original sound is blend of all these genres.

What’s the first song you ever learned to play?
Funny you should ask that, as weird as it sounds all three of us (Josh, Kenny, Cory) all got inspired to play guitar from listening to Blink 183 haha! We found this out many years later during a conversation about our first days of playing guitar, and oddly enough it was Blink that inspired us young lads-we were about 13 years old at the time. So there you have it! The first song Iearned was, Whats My Age Again.

What’s your favorite local venue to play? To see other bands?
hmmm good question...well our favorite venue to play in Portland is probably Mississippi Studios, the sound in there is incredible...However, the best sounding venue we have ever played in was in a tiny little town in southern Ireland called Kilworth. The venue is called The Kilworth Village Hall. Its an ancient little place that use to be a church back in the day. Its made entirely out of stone and was built in the 1600's. The sounds echoed through the 400 year old walls and was hands down the best gig of our last UK/Ireland tour and probably the best sounding show we have ever played

Speaking of other bands, who do you like on the Portland music scene?
Portland has some many amazing bands these days, we are definitely proud to be Portlanders. All the members of our band listen to all types of music but i can give you a few names.
I really enjoy the Fleet Foxes, Caleb Kaluder Country Band, The Bellboys, The Decemberists, I'm also a big Modest Mouse fan. There are so many good bands in this town, its a really special place.

Tell us about a recent “Only in Portland” moment you might have had.
-well this is not a "only in Portland moment", but I can give you a "only in Eugene" moment...about 3 years ago we had a CD release party for our first record "The Squid and the Fiddle". The show was at the local hippie student co-op The Campbell Club. We are all really big fans of the Red Hot Chili Peppers so we decided to do the entire show with only socks on our penises. Other than bit of footwear we were completely bare. Its was a very memorable moment for all of us, and needless to say there were a few drunk girls in the front row trying to yank the socks off while we played!!

Finish this sentence: “I cannot live without_Banjos and scrambles eggs, tossed with some local arugula____”

Check out this video about the band:

Water Tower Bucket Boys from on-par productions on Vimeo.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Local Artist Speaks: MICHAEL JODELL

I recently 'met' Miss Michael Jodell on a show I produce called ArtclecticPDX. Field producer, Lauren Oujiri, interviewed Michael for the program and also included some fabulous songs the musician has recorded. You can check out the interview by clicking here.

In the meantime, if you want to check her out in person, she will be at Music on Main Street - TONIGHT - right outside the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall (SW Broadway and Main). The show is with Mike Coykendall (click here for his blog/interview I did with him a few weeks back) and starts at 5 pm.

Meet....Miss Michael Jodell!!!!


How long have you lived in the Portland area? I moved here in 1998, and I still love it.

Give us a brief history of your band/project: I am a singer and songwriter, who grew up singing classic country and gospel. Somewhere along the way I was moved by Rock, charmed by Americana and romanced by Jazz music. I am very fortunate to have some fantastic musicians lend their talents to the Michael Jodell songbook! They are all busy musicians, so scheduling is always a challenge, but I like challenges.

What’s the first song you ever learned to play? When I was three years old, my mom was rehearsing Kris Kristofferson's "Why Me Lord" for church. I walked in and started to sing the chorus along with her. That Sunday she stood me on a chair and I made my singing debut.

What’s your favorite local venue to play? I love the Laurelthrist, because there is a great sense of community, and I have shared some fantastic musical moments there as a listener and player. I love Mississippi Studios sound and feel. To see other bands? The Schnitzer is amazing, Doug Fir sounds fantastic, and, again Mississippi Studios.

Speaking of other bands, who do you like on the Portland music scene? I am continuously inspired by the breadth of musical talent in this city. Dolorean, Mike Coykendall and the Golden Shag, Fernando, Pierced Arrows, M.Ward, Michael Hurley, Old Light, Blitzen Trapper, The Don of Division Street, the My Oh My's, Little Sue, From Words to Blows, Caleb Clauder, Drunken Prayer, Duover...the list goes on and on!

Tell us about a recent “Only in Portland” moment you have had. How about 60 degree weather in July?

Finish this sentence: “I cannot live without air.”

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Local Artist Speaks: RACHEL TAYLOR BROWN

Rachel Taylor Brown is one cool chick. She is clever and witty; she writes good song. I've talked with her on social media and the likes but have not crossed paths quite yet. And, I can't wait because she is quite something and admired by those who know her.

She has a new CD coming out on July 29 at Mississippi Studios. The name of the CD is World So Sweet and I encourage you take a listen when you have a chance.

Meet....Rachel Taylor Brown!

How long have you lived in the Portland area?
All my life. But for four years in Norwalk, CT, just outside NYC. I was born here, at Adidas Headquarters! It used to be Bess Kaiser Hospital. I grew up in unincorporated Gresham, a mile from Boring where I spent my youth picking berries. I used to walk the train tracks into Boring for fun. For. Fun.

Give us a brief history of your band/project:
I've been a musician forever but only started performing my own music and recording it ten years ago. I started playing piano by ear and singing when I was a kid, learned a little sight-reading in H.S. and got nudged to get my BA in Music then fell into classical (singing) gigs for many years--Cappella Romana, Portland Baroque Orchestra, Trinity Consort. I was terribly unfocused--I really do mean "fell." But I'd been writing songs ever since I could remember. My first was, in fact, composed in Mr. Saukaye's berry field, in Boring. It was called "The World's In Consternation." I remember being overly proud that I worked the word "consternation" in there, a word I read and had gone out of my way to learn. I was an insufferable child. Not much has changed as I'm an insufferable adult, too. Though I now favor simple over wordy in songwriting (though clearly not in answering simple questions). I crept into making my own music after a long isolated spell after a nervous breakdown. I was shaky and had no idea how to put together a band or make a record. I tend to work project to project, so no formal band. Most of my work is pretty private, isolated. Which I like. Some talented players have joined me over the years. My only real band now is Ben Landsverk, so talented. He and I have been doing duo shows for awhile. But I sometimes have arena rock needs, so I have an exceptional group of musicians joining me for the upcoming album release show, incl. Leigh Marble, Lisa Stringfield, my sister Katie Taylor, Jeff Langston. And Ben, of course. "World So Sweet" is my seventh album--the fifth i've made w/ my good friend Jeff Stuart Saltzman.

What’s the first song you ever learned to play?
Betty's Wooden Shoe Dance. I can still play it. It is an earworm for the ages.

What’s your favorite local venue to play? To see other bands?
The Press Club. They've been so good to me and I love the staff and owners. I've happily played there enough that I consider it home. It's a charming place. I feel charming when I play there. And I feel charmed when I hear someone else play there.

Speaking of other bands, who do you like on the Portland music scene?
Wendy Haynes (Sophe Lux), Kaitlyn ni Donovan, Leigh Marble, Michael Levausseur (Michael the Blind), Brothers Young, hurtbird, Menomena, Ali Wesley, Drew Norman (Professor Gall), Susannah Weaver (Little Sue), In Mulieribus, Bowel Candy. And I'm sure I've forgotten a few and will go "doh!" later.

Tell us about a recent “Only in Portland” moment you might have had.
I ride my bike a lot. I used to gloat that I never had to worry about a parking spot. Well, that's changed. Which is good, I guess; so many cyclists in Portland, you can't find a bike parking spot! I guess this could be a problem in Amsterdam, too, so it's not an "only in Portland" moment after all, dammit. I was so desperate for something to lock my bike to recently, I almost used a dog.

Finish this sentence: “I cannot live without_____”
Jay and Katie (my husband and my sister). And their humor. And my dear family (esp. Kristin and Eric) and friends. And quiet. And fresh, cool air. And my bike. And brain. And sleep. And the sea. And books. And animals. And Firefly. And teevee. And quiet. And (despite my uneasy past w/ them) Oregon strawberries. And, of course, making up music. I love that.

Click here for a podcast recorded in 2009 that includes Rachel Taylor Brown: Mississippi Studio Session.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

three7: What's the haps!?

Hope y'all are enjoying this summer's liquid sunshine. Keeps the northwest green though - for real.

Just dripping a quick line keeping y'all updated on the latest. Had a real good time at the KZME benefit put on by Octopus Entertainment. Good music and good conversation at a real cool venue. If you weren't able to make it, there are some photos on the KZME Facebook fan page to check out. Keep your eyes and ears open for the next event though, definitely don't want to be missing out.

Currently listening to music from L-Pro's album "Chronicles" and getting ready for the video release party coming up on Thursday. Check it:
Tune in to Welcome to the Neighborhood this Tuesday night at 9pm to hear more about it as L-Pro is the featured in-studio guest. Also check out his website to get up to date on the man and his music.

Also planning on playing new music from Luck-One, Diction One, DJ Fatboy's remix of an E-40 cut and more. You can get caught up on past episodes on the KZME web site here:  DJ Klyph! and get connected on Twitter and Facebook

Alright y'all, until next time.



Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The Local Artist Speaks: THE STOLEN SWEETS

The Stolen Sweets are a darling band of some fine, talented musicians. Their sweet nod to yesteryear is one that will take you back well beyond the seven years the band has been around.

One of the members of that band is Pete Krebs. He's been around these parts for over two decades and can be found in several ensembles in Portland, including one of my personal favorites, Kung Pao Chicken. Back in the day, when I was young, footloose and fancy free, I'd stop by the Lauralthirst Pub on Monday nights for chili, pear cider and Kung Pao Chicken. Ah, those were the days....

Meet Pete Krebs....!

How long have you lived in the Portland area?
I have lived in Portland since 1987, and have been active in music here ever since.

Give us a brief history of your band/project:
The Stolen Sweets formed 7 years ago to learn and perform a night's worth of music by the Boswell Sisters. We enjoyed it, and each other, so much that we decided to keep it going!

What’s the first song you ever learned to play?
'Smoke On the Water'

What’s your favorite local venue to play? To see other bands?
I really enjoy all of the local venues that I/we get to play on a regular basis; the Secret Society Ballroom, Tony Starlight's, Duff's Garage, andina Restaurant and the Morrison Hotel.

Speaking of other bands, who do you like on the Portland music scene?
I think that the Midnight Serenaders are a fantastic band, and really dig Caleb Klauder's variety of projects.

Tell us about a recent “Only in Portland” moment you might have had.
Well, my typical 'Only in Portland' moments usually involve running late to a gig, wired on some kind of free-range, fair trade, slow drip, rocket fueled iced coffee, stuck behind a hipster on a track bike who's taking up a whole lane, oblivious to the outside world thanks to some headphones. Oh yeah, and it's raining.

Finish this sentence: “I cannot live without_____”
I cannot live without free-range, fair trade, slow drip, rocket fuel iced coffee.

Editor's Note: I'm afraid that I did not hyperlink any of the content beyond the band's name/link. So sorry! I'm on vacation and the 'ritas are calling my name.

The Stolen Sweets are performing at Music on Main Street TONIGHT! A free, family friendly show, 5 pm to 7 pm. Deets can be found here!