Monday Morning Music Shuffle – Set the Dial to Black and White Mix

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Still reeling from Saturday night’s Raging Fire reunion at Exit/In.  So many memories stirred, the band sounded so good, and the songs were still as awesome as always.  My (perhaps) unique perspective.  I was a huge fan of the Nashville music scene in the mid to late 1980s, but just a fan and mostly at a distance.  I only made it to Nashville on the rare occasion I could round up people to go with me. I was lucky enough to see some of the great bands of  that era, but I didn’t know anybody.

That being said, the music was important to me, and WRVU and The Metro and later Fireplace Whiskey Journal were my lifelines.  So, it was a pretty cool experience to be at this show and to actually know some of the people involved.  And speaking of WRVU, when Adam Dread fist bumped me during the Raging Fire set… my eighteen/nineteen year old self suddenly felt very cool.

And to be redundant, Raging Fire absolutely killed it. Melora Zaner is still one of the best and sexiest rock vocalist around, Mark Medley kept the whole thing in perfect time, bassists John Reed, Les Shields (and the other one I didn’t know) were awesome.  The very large shoes of the late Michael Godsey were filled by not one but two of the scenes very best – Joe Blanton (The Enemy, Royal Court of China, The Bluefields) and Jeff Cease (Rumble Circus, Black Crowes). They were perfect for the role, having known Michael and having been present…

We jump into a Monday Morning shuffle….

“Photo Booth” by Tim Lee 3

Fresh on the news that Tim Lee 3 spinoff band, BARK, will be playing Nashville this month.  We have TL3 with a song from their latest album, 33 1/3.  Such a great band that I’ve gotten to know over the last few years, and they have some deep, deep roots in the music of my youth.

“Casino Road” by Kevin Gordon

Just before Kevin Gordon released his latest album Long Gone Time, he released a compilation EP via Noisetrade and serves as a good catching up point if you are just now discovering the talented Mr. Gordon.  This song goes back to O Come Look at the Burning which was released just over a decade ago.

“Cut Me Some Slack” by Paul McCartney, Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, and Pat Smear

From the film/soundtrack Sound City… much was (rightfully) made of  the ex-Beatle leading the remaining members of Nirvana in this song which truly rocks.  The interesting side story for me… I recently watched the movie What We Do is Secret, which was a fictionalized telling of the history of the L.A. punk band The Germs. So what makes the story fascinating for me… when The Germs started, they decided to form a band, bought instruments, booked and played their first show (which was a ridiculous, chaotic mess), and only then learned to play the instruments. Pat Smear formed the band along with the late Darby Crash, and some thirty plus years later, he finds himself playing with Sir Paul himself.  I don’t know… that seems kind of remarkable to me.

“The Rise of the Black Messiah” by Indigo Girls

Indigo Girls released their 14th Studio album this past summer. The album is called One Lost Day, and the Rise of the Black Messiah is on that album.

“My Lord and I” by Elder Anderson Johnson

From the Music Maker Relief Foundation album. Elder Anderson Johnson was a street performer, an outsider artist, and he founded a church in Newport News, Virginia. He passed away in 1998.

“Drops of Ink” by Drew Kohl

Another track from Drew Kohl’s EP, Sweetheart, which I reviewed earlier this year.  “Drops of Ink” is a story of lost love. 

“Hysterically Speaking” by The Colored Parade

Another track from The Colored Parade’s album, And the Walls of the City Will Shake.  A great, catchy song… I look forward to continuing to follow Andrew Adkins and see where his music takes him.  

“I Feel Like My Time Ain’t Long” by Essie Mae Brooks

We close out the Monday shuffle with another Music Maker Relief Foundation artist. Essie Mae Brooks was born in Georgia in 1930 and began making music at a very early age. I kind of think maybe we featured this song before, but who really cares – it is a great song.


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Monday Morning Music Shuffle – Long Black Train Mix

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Okay – two quick announcements…. 1.  I am going to put the Events Page on hiatus until I am able to make some changes.  It was an experiment, and to be honest the effort/effectiveness ratio of the current format wasn’t really working for me.  I am going to look into some alternative formats etc., and look to re-launch hopefully sooner than later.

Last nights, Traveler show was amazing. Traveler is Cory Chisel, Robert Ellis, and Jonny Fritz.  They brought out Dave Rawlings for one song. The whole show was fabulous.  The always awesome Aaron Lee Tasjan opened.

“Someone to Let You Down” by Drew Kohl

We open up the weeks shuffle with another one from Drew Kohl’s awesome EP Sweetheart.

“Almost Over Now” by Carolina Story

I’ve been a fan of Carolina Story for some time.  This song comes from their 2014 album Chapter Two.

“In Your Shoes” by Sarah McLachlan

In case you forgot, besides breaking our hearts with her public service announcements, Sarah McLachlan is still a talented singer-songwriter. This song is from her 2014 album Shine On.

“Industry Standard” by Burning Bridges

So glad, I finally got to meet Rob from The Danbury Lie in person. This is a track from his old band Burning Bridges – think The Danbury Lie with the metal turned up to eleven.  (By the way, the video I inserted for this song, is one of Rob’s Road Videos from his current trip that was shot here in Nashville.  Trivia: Some of it was shot from the passenger seat of my van including bits from my accidently, random tour of random and somewhat interesting Nashville sites. 

“Knocking on Heaven’s Door” (live) by The Alarm

The Alarm were one of my favorite bands way back in the day.  Like U2, they had a larger than life quality, and there was a time that they lived up to that quality.  The video of this song is from a huge concert they put on in 1985 at UCLA.  Of course, the song is by Dylan, but in many ways, it seemed to have been written for The Alarm.  Trivia: When I saw Bob Dylan in 1988, The Alarm opened for him.

“Roots and Wings” by Miranda Lambert

You may not believe it, but I added this song to my playlist before the recent events in Ms. Lambert’s personal life. I don’t go for the gossip. Suffice it to say, Miranda Lambert is a pretty awesome singer/songwriter.

“Wait a Minute” by Jesse and Noah

Another great song from Jesse and Noah.  This is from their Brethren: Acoustic Covers EP.  Wait a Minute is a cover of a tune by The Seldom Scene from their 1974 album Old Train.  The song serves as an excellent showcase for Jesse and Noah’s incredible vocal harmonies.

“Diamond Jelly” by The Danbury Lie

Speaking of The Danbury Lie – we close out the shuffle with this track from Choose Your Delusion – the second of three (releases in 2015).


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Tuesday Morning Music Shuffle – Upon My Liars Chair Mix

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Visit Our Events Page Ear to the Ground Events!

I hope you have had a chance to check out the Ear to the Ground Events Page (link above).  I made some updates last night around 9:00p.m. Central Time.  I will try to make updates throughout the week, but I’m not able to constantly update.  If you have an upcoming event, either invite me on Facebook or send me the information.

We have a short but sweet shuffle today… 5 of the 6 songs have a Nashville connection (6 of 6 if you get really loose and creative in making connections)… read on….

“Turning” by Paul Zografi

Paul Zografi is a Nashville based songwriter.  I met him at a Tim Carroll show a couple of months back and got hold of his latest album, Bright which was released back in October 2014.  It is an excellent record, and I am glad a song finally popped up in my shuffle.  You will be hearing more.  Turning is the last song on the album even if it is the first we have featured.

“Hurt” (nine inch nails cover) by Samuel Claiborne and the True Groove All-Stars

From my friends at True Groove Records… the only song in the shuffle without a direct Nashville connection unless you count the Johnny Cash cover of this song.  Samuel Clairborne’s version of the Nine Inch Nails classic mixes a generous but understated industrial sound with an intense and low-key vocal delivery.  There were moments that to me it sounded somewhat like if Leonard Cohen experimented with Industrial music with the best possible results.  This is from an amazing album called Recovered which features many of my favorite True Groove artists covering classic songs from a variety of genres.  More to come from this record.

“Ocean” by Carl Anderson

Carl Anderson is based in Nashville now.  This song goes back to his 2012 album Wolftown.  I grabbed it from a Noisetrade sampler that came out ahead of the release of his latest album Risk of Loss which remains one of my favorite albums of the year.

“Friends With Motorcycles” by Black Vincent

Black Vincent’s album Teardrop Deluxe was recorded in Nashville, and it, too, is one of my favorites of the year so far. In the video playlist, we have an earlier version of the song featuring Black Vincent bandleader Coley Kennedy. 

“Is It You?” by Drew Kohl

Nashville (by way of Athens, GA) songwriter Drew Kohl celebrated a birthday on Sunday.  This is a song from his EP Sweetheart which I reviewed earlier this year, and it features one of Kohl’s trademark sustained notes that makes me short of breath just to hear. His songs have such an ease to them – easy listening in the best sense of that oft maligned term.

“Walking on the Levee” by Kevin Gordon

We close out the day with another Nashville songwriter and bit of a sneak peak (sort of) into his forthcoming new album Long Time Gone which is scheduled for release in September… I will have much more to say about this new album in the weeks leading up to its release, but (spoiler alert) it is going to be a good one!  I have had the good fortune to see Gordon play several shows here in Nashville over the last couple of months, and he blows me out of the water every single time.  Obviously, since the song is unreleased, the video I’ve added to the playlist is not this song, but it is a much older Kevin Gordon “Levee” song.


Thursday Morning Music Shuffle – H.S.K.T. Mix

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Well here we are… late, but I did listen to this shuffle this morning.  Been on the road most of the day, so I’m just posting it now.   I got to keep it brief, but check out the great music.

“Notes” by Mothers

Another track from Panamanian Times. Just flat out cool punkish rock from New York City.  From the Mama Coco’s Funky Kitchen collective.

“Fire and Flood” by Joe Sundell

This song has been lingering around my playlist for a long while.  From Joe Sundell’s awesome album, The Hat Thief.  Dig this song.

“Are You Gonna Be My Friend?” by Drew Kohl

Our first shuffle listen to Sweetheart EP by Drew Kohl.  We first heard Drew’s original voice as part of Young America.  Drew tackles the subject of love in some interesting ways, and Sweetheart is a really good record.  But don’t take my word for it, read what I had to say…. 

“Turn Me On” by Tipi Valley

Ed Toff (a.k.a. Tipi Valley) has been a favorite of Ear to the Ground for several years.  His latest release is called Dust.  Tipi Valley is from Swansea in the UK, and he doesn’t use You Tube.  So, you will need to listen to Turn Me On using the widget below “American Flags in Black and White” by John Moreland

Hands down one of the best shows I’ve seen this year was John Moreland at The 5 Spot (just a couple of hours after seeing him at Music City Roots).  He managed to silence both crowds with his gritty, gut-wrenching take on Americana/Roots/Folk music.  Hands down one of the best records of 2015 is Moreland’s High on Tulsa Heat.  Here is a track from that album.

“H.S.K.T.” by Sylvan Esso

Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes.  Sylvan Esso is Amelia Meath of Mountain Man and Nick Sanborn who does electronic producing under the name Made of Oak.  This song is simple yet brilliant, infectious without being obnoxious.  

“Lone Star Song” by Grant Lee Buffalo

Might Joe Moon was a Goodwill CD bin find, and I have really enjoyed discovering this album.  Lone Star Song may be my favorite song on the album, but I’m not sure.  It is a favorite, though…

“Jim Along Josie” by The Barefoot Movement

I can count on one finger the number of young, tradition folk bands that I have met in a chance encounter at the Cash Cabin Studio.  The Barefoot Movement would be that one finger.  Off of their EP The High Road.  Jim Along Josie is a foot-stomping traditional folk song.

“Ground” by Terrible

Terrible are Nashville band who are anything but… “Ground” is a song from their album Oakwood which was released earlier this month.  


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