July 2013

Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Andy Mulkerin of Pittsburgh's City Paper. In case you missed it here's what he played with commentary by Andy: Janelle Monae, "Dance Apocalyptic" - Who doesn't like Janelle Monae? This is the first track released from her upcoming album The Electric Lady, set for a September release. Get down with weird robots. Samantha Crain, "Paint" - A song about growing old, from a 26-year-old -- though, to be fair, she started touring at age 19, so she IS a veteran. This is from Crain's new album, produced by John Vanderslice -- the production is minimal but effective.
images We all know Nirvana's record In Utero is coming up on its 20th anniversary.  In Utero was the follow up to Nirvana's breakthrough record Nevermind and the threesome's final album.   Similar to the recent re-release of NevermindIn Utero will be reissued with a magnitude of bonus material. A few weeks ago news of the In Utero reissue broke.  In a recent update it has been announced that the In Utero reissue will be out on September 24.  There will be two versions of the re-release, both a regular and deluxe version. The regular reissue includes a newly re-mastered CD and digital versions of In Utero.  The deluxe reissue will consist of three CDs and one DVD.  The deluxe version will feature unreleased demos, B sides, and live tracks.  The live tracks include a complete live performance from 1993 featuring the final touring lineup of the band from Seattle's Pier 48.  The bonus DVD from the deluxe package can be purchased separately and will also have never-before-seen footage of the band.  You can read the setlist In Utero reissue below. CD ONE ORIGINAL ALBUM 1.   Smells Like Teen Spirit 2.   In Bloom 3.   Come As You Are 4.   Breed 5.   Lithium 6.   Polly 7.   Territorial Pissings 8.   Drain You 9.   Lounge Act 10.  Stay Away 11.  On A Plain 12.  Something In The Way THE B-SIDES 13.  Even In His Youth 14.  Aneurysm 15.  Curmudgeon 16.  D-7 live at the BBC 17.  Been A Son live 18.  School live 19.  Drain You live 20.  Sliver live 21.  Polly live
THE SMART STUDIO SESSIONS 1.   In Bloom previously unreleased 2.   Immodium (Breed) previously unreleased 3.   Lithium previously unreleased 4.   Polly previously unreleased mix 5.   Pay To Play 6.   Here She Comes Now 7.   Dive previously unreleased 8.   Sappy previously unreleased THE BOOMBOX REHEARSALS 9.   Smells Like Teen Spirit 10.  Verse Chorus Verse previously unreleased 11.  Territorial Pissings previously unreleased 12.  Lounge Act previously unreleased 13.  Come As You Are 14.  Old Age previously unreleased 15.  Something In The Way previously unreleased 16.  On A Plain previously unreleased BBC SESSIONS 17.  Drain You previously unreleased 18.  Something In The Way previously unreleased
THE DEVONSHIRE MIXES previously unreleased
1.   Smells Like Teen Spirit 2.   In Bloom 3.   Come As You Are 4.   Breed 5.   Lithium 6.   Territorial Pissings 7.   Drain You 8.   Lounge Act 9.   Stay Away 10.  On A Plain 11.  Something In The Way CD FOUR LIVE AT THE PARAMOUNT THEATRE previously unreleased concert 1.   Jesus Doesn’t Want Me For A Sunbeam 2.   Aneurysm 3.   Drain You 4.   School 5.   Floyd The Barber 6.   Smells Like Teen Spirit 7.   About A Girl 8.   Polly 9.   Breed 10.  Sliver 11.  Love Buzz 12.  Lithium 13.  Been A Son 14.  Negative Creep 15.  On A Plain 16.  Blew 17.  Rape Me 18.  Territorial Pissings 19.  Endless, Nameless
LIVE AT THE PARAMOUNT THEATRE previously unreleased concert 1.   Jesus Doesn’t Want Me For A Sunbeam 2.   Aneurysm 3.   Drain You 4.   School 5.   Floyd The Barber 6.   Smells Like Teen Spirit 7.   About A Girl 8.   Polly 9.   Breed 10.  Sliver 11.  Love Buzz 12.  Lithium 13.  Been A Son 14.  Negative Creep 15.  On A Plain 16.  Blew 17.  Rape Me 18.  Territorial Pissings 19.  Endless, Nameless EXTRAS 1.   Smells Like Teen Spirit music video 2.   Come As You Are music video 3.   Lithium music video 4.   In Bloom music video
jack-white-2013 Mr. Music himself, Jack White continues to use money from The White Stripes to give back to the community.  Jack White has recently donated $200,000 to the National Recording Preservation Foundation. The organization is non-profit and dedicated to establishing, preserving, and adding accessibility to the recorded sounds of the US, a modern day Alan Lomax if you will.  White has also recently donated $143,000 to help save the Detroit Masonic Temple from foreclosure. Jack White's donation to the National Recording Preservation Foundation is the first the group has received.  Executive Director of the organization, Gerald Seligman, recently commented on White's donation stating, "With this contribution we can now put up our basic structure, begin enacting the preservation plan – and give out our first grants. We're committed to doing that right away, and certainly within the coming months."  Jack White will also serve on the board of the foundation which has established a partnership with the U.S. Congress.  Gerald Seligman has also teased the idea the possibility of the National Recording Preservation Foundation releasing a commercial collection at some point (perhaps on Jack White's Third Man Records).
superjam This past year's Rock and Soul Superjam at Bonnaroo was arguably its best ever. Bonnaroo festival coordinators seem to find a way to out do themselves year in and year out. The 2012 Bonnaroo Superjam set the bar high with ?uestlove (of the Roots) bringing along D'Angelo, who made his first US appearance in nearly 12 years. 2012 Roo goers were left wondering how could Bonnaroo out do itself again next year? Well for starters, 2013's Bonnaroo had three separate Superjams which tackled nearly the entire musical spectrum including blue-grass, hip-hop, soul, rock and funk.  Of the this past year's three Superjams, one in particular stood out- Jim James and John Oates' Rock and Soul Superjam.  The Jim James and John Oates coordinated Superjam was easily one of the best shows of this past year's Bonnaroo, which is saying lot when Ed Helms (The Office, The Hangover) and The RZA (Wu-Tang Clan) are also running Superjams of their own. Jim James might as well be nicknamed "Mr. Bonnaroo," because that's what he has become. My Morning Jacket has grown and became the entity that it is now through their performances at Bonnaroo.  This year James was performing a solo set at the farm to promote his solo album, Regions Of Light And Sound Of God.  More importantly, Jim James collaborated with fellow funk and soul music aficionado John Oates on a Superjam. James and Oates recruited the famous percussionists Zigaboo Modeliste (of the Meters) and Cyro Baptista, fellow My Morning Jack guitarist Carl Broemel, Bilal,  The Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Larry Graham (Sly & The Family Stone, Graham Central Station).  There were also special appearances from Brittany Howard (Alabama Shakes), R. Kelly, and Billy Idol for the Rock and Soul Superjam.  For those who who do not know, Bonnaroo goers had to pretty much skip sets by both R. Kelly and Billy Idol in order to see the entire Rock and Soul Superjam (a decision I, too, made).  That being said, the guest appearances by the two iconic singers were a welcomed surprise and reward to those who chose to miss the two sets.  The performance included covers of "Use Me," "1999", and "Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Again)" to just name a few. For those who were fortunate enough to see this star-studded performance it was a two and a half hour period of pure musical ecstasy.  Needless to say, Jim James proved to Bonnaroovians once again that he can pull out all the stops.  Jim James commented on the performance in a recent interview with Rolling Stone, "You just kind of walk off from that. . . literally feeling like you just won the Super Bowl or something because it was such a battle.  The whole thing was such a f**king battle. . . there's so much involved in trying to make it work. And then when it actually does work, you really just feel so victorious." Bonnaroo 365 has released the first of an eight-part series covering Rock and Soul Superjam.  The first video includes footage of the cover of John Lennon's "Instant Karma."  You can watch the video below.
Article-699920-fun2013   For the second time in two years fun. has graced Pittsburgh’s Stage AE with their presence.  The first time around, back in 2011, fun. performed a sold-out indoors show.  Although fun. has not released any new material recently, they have gained much recognition and grown significantly in popularity.  In the last two years, fun. have toured all across the US, performed at major festivals, and most importantly won two GRAMMY awards – for both Best New Artist (for Some Nights) and Song of the Year (We Are Young). fun. brought the synth-pop rock duo Tegan and Sara along with them this time.  For those who are unaware, Tegan and Sara have been around the block.  The Canadian sisters have been making music since 1995.  That being said, the duo brought the skill and overall musical tightness that you would expect from a tenured band.  The duo fed off the energy from the sold-out Stage AE crowd.  From what I saw, most of the crowd was familiar with Tegan and Sara’s material.  The crowd sang along loud and proud during the duo’s set.  Tegan and Sara also both exclaimed their excitement and gratitude to be opening for fun..  Tegan and Sara’s set included a lot of their well-known songs including “Living Room,” “Closer,” and “Drive Me Wild.” After a high-energy performance by Tegan and Sara, fun. took the stage.  The upbeat indie rockers came out on stage with a bang, opening with “Some Nights (Intro)” and going straight into “One Foot.”  fun. brought their full bag of tricks with them.  Lead singer, Nate Ruess had the crowd in the palm of his hand from the second he took the stage til the final encore.  The entire crowd was singing along with every lyric.  Fun. played a set that was almost an even split between their debut album Aim and Ignite and their critically acclaimed Some Nights.  fun. did not limit themselves to just their album material though.  After Ruess commented on the gradual transformation and expansion of the band’s fan base, they broke into an impromptu cover of Carlos Santana’s “Smooth.”   Ruess also acknowledged that Jimmy Buffet was in town performing and the band went into a cover of their own and no, it was not Margaritaville, it was Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.”  After performing their mega hit “We Are Young,” fun. left the stage for the first time.  After only letting a few minutes pass, fun. came out and performed “Some Nights” and closed out with “Stars.”  fun. more than lived up to the expectation anybody in the crowd could have had going into the concert, myself included.  In a night where the Pittsburgh Symphony was performing the music of Led Zeppelin and the icon Jimmy Buffet were also in town, those who were fortunate enough to attend the sold-out fun. show were treated an outstanding concert and treated to quite a fun time.  Sorry.  I had to... -- Drew Frichtel
freddie-mj The long-awaited release of the duets with Queen's famous frontman Freddie Mercury and the "King of Pop" Michael Jackson is finally here.  Queen's 40th anniversary is coming up fast and what better way to commemorate it than releasing unheard music by Freddie Mercury? The material was recorded back in 1983.  The two singers tracked three songs together during a six-hour session in Michael  Jackson's home studio in Encino, California.  The collaboration allegedly hit a "snag" when Jackson brought a llama into the studio according to Mercury's longtime manager Jim "Miami" Beach (not joking).  In an interview with the Times, Beach commented on the matter, “They got on well except for the fact that I suddenly got a call from Freddie, saying, ‘Miami, dear, can you get on over here… You’ve got to get me out of here. I’m recording with a llama… I’ve had enough and I want to get out." Although there was somewhat of a falling out between the two singers, there is a lost interview in the 2012 documentary Freddie Mercury: The Great Pretender in which Mercury expressed regret for not reconnecting with Jackson.  Mercury was quoted saying, “I think one of the tracks would have been on the Thriller album if I had finished it, but I missed out."  As we all know Thriller is one of the most iconic and successful albums ever, one can only imagine how much better it would have been with Mercury featured on it.  The surviving members of Queen Brian May and Roger Taylor enlisted producer William Orbit (Madonna, Blur) to revamp the material.  
20130116_stevie_wonder_91 As most of the world knows by now, George Zimmerman was acquitted of the murder charges under the Stand-Your-Ground Law.  There was an outrage nationwide from the verdict from the Trayvon Martin case. Although it has been a few weeks since the verdict, there is still a hangover from the acquittal of George Zimmerman.  The music community has been some of the most verbal in opposing the verdict. Stevie Wonder recently stepped up the bar when he announced that he will no longer play in the state of Florida or any state that has the Stand-Your-Ground Law in act.  Stevie Wonder commented on the matter stating, “For those who may have lost the battle for justice, where that fits in any part of the world…we can’t bring them back…” You can watch Stevie Wonder’s emotional response and decision to no longer play in Florida in the video below.  
fcaae7e8 Andre 3000 (Andre Benjamin) of Outkast will be portraying Jimi Hendrix in the John Ridley biopic All Is By My Side.  The film chronicles the period of time where Hendrix wrote and recorded his debut album Are You Experienced in England in 1966 and 1967.   Other actors and actresses that have been linked to All Is By My Side include Imogen Poots, Hayley Atwell, Ruth Negga and Adrian Lester.  The film is set to start shooting in Ireland in three weeks.  Currently there are no US distributors in line to take on the film or release dates set. All Is By My Side actually will not be using any of Hendrix's music featured in the film.  This can probably be attested to the disapproval of the movie from the Hendrix family.  Experience Hendrix LLC, which manages the publishing of Hendrix's music, released a statement saying, "[The Hendrix Estate] has made it known many times in the past that no such film, were it to include original music or copyrights created by Jimi Hendrix, can be undertaken without its full participation."  Although it seems like a movie about Jimi Hendrix would need to include his music, biopics without band's music have been made before.  Nowhere Boy, which told the origin of The Beatles, did not use any of their music.  The film will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.  
phish-2013-tour-rumors-gorge-colorado-chicago Phish are currently touring out on the west coast, but the jam band veterans have announced a tour expansion.  After Phish finishes up its current run in early September the band with be getting back on the road for the east coast beginning October 18.  In traditional Phish fashion, select dates like Hampton, Virginia will get to see Trey Anastasio and company play three nights in a row. Phish is also celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.  Phish has already announced plans to jump back into the studio to record a new album.  When asked about a time table for the new album, Trey Anastasio stated, “As soon as this tour is over we’re going to go right in the barn, but right now we’re just going to enjoy playing.”  It's clear that even after 30 years in the industry Phish isn't going anywhere anytime soon.  The band hasn't released any dates where they plan to be in the studio.  You can check out the added dates to Phish's summer tour below. Phish 2013 Tour Dates: 10/18 – Hampton, VA @ Hampton Coliseum 10/19 – Hampton, VA @ Hampton Coliseum 10/20 – Hampton, VA @ Hampton Coliseum 10/22 – Rochester, NY @ Blue Cross Arena 10/25 – Worcester, MA @ DCU Center 10/26 – Worcester, MA @ DCU Center 10/27 – Hartford, CT @ XL Center 10/29 – Reading, PA @ Sovereign Center 10/31 - Atlantic City, NJ @ Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall 11/01 - Atlantic City, NJ @ Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall 11/02 – Atlantic City, NJ @ Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall

Every Wednesday at 9:13 am, one of Pittsburgh's finest music writers joins me (Cindy Howes) on the Morning Mix to play a couple favorite new songs and share some insight. Today we welcome Scott Tady of The Beaver County Times. In case you missed it here's what he played (with commentary by Scott). Mayer Hawthorne, "Backseat Lover" - At last, an artist who fans of both Steely Dan and Justin Timberlake can agree upon. Mayer puts a slick jazz gloss on his contemporary, sexually charged R&B. The title of this 2-week-old album asks, “Where Does This Door Go?” Evidently, to places both fresh and retro; sometimes delightful, sometimes excessive, but never, ever dull. The Hawkeyes “Double E” - I really enjoyed seeing these Pittsburgh-Ellwood City rockers perform last year in Market Square on a biker night. The Hawkeyes cites Drive-By Truckers and the Hold Steady as big influences, though you’ll hear some Stonesy swagger on this song, about a guy running sketchy errands on the East Coast, hoping he can just make it back to a secret crash-pad, rendezvous point nicknamed the Double E. The Hawkeyes sold out their Club Café CD release show this month, and have a similar show planned for Indianapolis, where they also have a fan base. Recently parting ways with their Cincinnati-based label, they’re already working on a follow-up album.