With the release of the new album just 2 weeks away, “The Magpie Salute” took the stage with the presence of a band ready to raise the spirits of the blues men before them. Rich Robinson and Marc Ford are seamless in their volleys back and forth. Vocalist John Hogg’s voice is powerful and comforting at the same time. The set was heavy with new songs. A high point was the rendition of Blind Faiths, “Had to Cry”. Continue reading The Magpie Salute and Blackberry Smoke at the Filmore
Blackberry Smoke, JJ Grey and Mofro, Texas Gentlemen
Writer/Photographer: Bob Adamek
At the end of the beautiful outdoor walking mall in Charlottesville Virginia, sits the Sprint Pavillion, a venue that routinely plays host to national touring bands. On a typically beautiful Virginia night, warm and humid, three well musically-linked bands rolled in and made for a very memorable evening.
Caleb Stine – Moon
Writer: Tim Newby
Caleb Stine is a songwriter of powerful dimensions who does not simply write songs and make albums, instead he creates experiences through his music that spring to life through his commanding voice that channels the heart of each character that inhabit his songs. The stories that exist in his songs run the full gamut of emotion from joy, to sorrow, to curiosity, to elation. Listening to one of Stine’s albums is a complete emotional journey, an experience beyond simply listening to music.
Combsy at Second Street Brewery
Santa Fe, NM
June 16, 2018
Santa Fe, NM
Writer/ Photographer: Jake Cudek
Setlist: Joshua Tree, Black & Tan Fantasy, 1939, Villain, Una Esta, Times are Hard for Dreamers, So Long Uncle Walter, Chicken Strut, Versus
One of Santa Fe’s favorite watering holes, The Second Street Brewery, celebrated the art of craft beer, crab, and dads in the city. Hosting, The Second Street Brewery’s First Annual Pilsner and Crab Festival, at their newest taproom the event brought out both residents and tourists in droves. For the entertainment, the brewery tapped Tulsa jazz instrumentalist and genre-fusing gypsy Chris Combs, who was out promoting his newest album, Combsy.
Continue reading Combsy at Second Street Brewery
The unofficial kick off to summer is Summer Camp Music Festival. After it’s 19th year Summer Camp has solidified its name as the premier festival in the Midwest and continues to grow. Having ten stages with music being played on them nearly twenty hours a day, Summer Camp has become a music festival buffet that has something for everyone. Who says you have to be a kid to go to camp?
The unofficial camp counselors of Summer Camp are the boys from Umphrey’s McGee. From stage time to organizing the festival’s kickball game, the band has earned all possible camp badges at this point. Their Friday night set showed why the band has come to the forefront of jam scene. Starting off with, “Maybe Someday” they let everyone know they are not afraid of heights. “All in Time” seemed to have a little extra magic sprinkled on it sounding like an anthem being played across the festival grounds. “Booth Love” had support from Ryan Zoldis and Eric “Benny” Bloom of Lettuce with all the juices flowing everyone ended set one in fourth gear with “Call to Arms”, from the infamous Sturgill Simpson.
Words/photos by Bob Adamek
There were many choices on the east coast for great live music over Memorial Day weekend — from DelFest in Cumberland, MD to the Greenwich Town Party in Connecticut. However, it would have been really hard to beat the lineup and fun at Rooster Walk 10 in Martinsville, VA.
The four day festival is held on a gorgeous tract of land in Martinsville, VA called Pop’s Farm, featuring gently rolling hills, a beautiful small lake and three stages plus a VIP stage that all have their own vibe. The festival has seen steady growth and puts together a more impressive lineup every year. The overall vibe is relaxed and family friendly. Camping is available and there are many affordable rooms in Martinsville. Continue reading Rooster Walk 10
April 24, 2018; Fair Lawn, NJ: Renowned live concert photographer Vernon Webb, whose countless images of rock stars have been prized for decades, is coming out from behind the camera to center stage as he is set to release his own compilation of original songs. What fans are quickly learning is that Vernon Webb is so much more than an accomplished live music photog but he is also a Singer/Songwriter with over 20 years of original material waiting to be heard. Webb’s initial work, “Back To Normal & Beyond,” is five songs, and features the musicality of an all star group of Vernon’s long time friends. The musicians helping him launch his career as a solo artist include:
Michael Falzarono (New Riders of the Purple Sage, Hot Tuna) on guitar,
Ronnie Penque (New Riders of the Purple Sage, Melvin Seals & JGB) on bass guitar,
Anastasia René; backing vocals,
Sandra Williams (Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings); backing vocals,
Ben Wilson (Blues Traveler) on keyboards,
World famous banjo player Tony Trischka,
Aaron Comes (Spin Doctors) on drums
Peter Roberts on bass,
Mike Flynn on lead and slide,
Pappy Biondo (Cabinet) on banjo,
Vin Warner on upright bass,
Sean Schulich on flute,
Kind Bud Johnson on acoustic guitar,
AJ Santana on Cajun and drums, and
Wes Fahringer on bass
Webb says “As a music photographer I got to meet many of my musical idols and thought, how cool would it be to have some of them playing on my tracks? I threw caution to the wind and reached out and was blown away by the support I received. I am more than honored for each and every one that has helped me in this endeavor.”
The songs are great, and from the soulful country ballad “Every Now & Then,” to the Americana tracks and the frolicking rocker “Got 2 Reasons”, “Back To Normal & Beyond” covers lots of musical ground. The strong vocals, powerful lyrics, and inspired guitar of Webb are well known to attendees of his solo acoustic concerts,and are mightily added to by Vernon’s cast of friends in a recording environment.
“These songs have been with me for a long time. Most were written over the past twenty years. I have seen them as my children and they are now all grown and ready to go out into the world on their own.”
Although Vernon is well known as a photographer, and his best contacts are rock idols and now musical collaborators, there is a unique plan to market “Back To Normal & Beyond.” A song per month will be released through Vernon’s website, starting end April ‘18. Those that sign up for his newsletter will receive free downloads of individual tracks. The entire CD is currently scheduled to be released and available for purchase October 2018.
Watch out for many more Vernon Webb original recordings, and to always be in the know as to where you can see his solo acoustic sets sign up for his e-mail list here: vernonwebb.com And don’t rule out some friends from joining in!!
Light of Day/Dark of Night
Writer: Amber Jennings
With musicians coast to coast dipping their toes in American Roots music and dosing the airwaves with an onslaught of hipsters sporting acoustic guitars and crooning out their fractured melodies it can be arduous to find an artist who digs deeper into their being to pull out something greater than a whimsical tune played at the local coffee chain. Pat Ferguson (The Smokin’ Bandits) is that rare light shining through the darkness of generic Americano. The Wisconsin based performer has emerged as a renowned and nationally recognized solo artist and released this first full-length solo effort, “Light of Day/Dark of Night” on LoHi Records and it is brilliant.
The album produced by Adam Greuel of Horseshoes & Hand Grenades features guest appearances by Jacob Jolliff (Yonder Mountain String Band), Kyle Keegan (Ben Howard), Kenny Leiser (Wheelhouse), Chad Staehly (Hard Working Americans & Great American Taxi), Sarah Vos (Dead Horses) and Samual Odin (Horseshoes & Hand Grenades).
As you dive into the “Intro” and submerge into, “Howl” you know you have found something amazing. The spacious auroric sound of Odin on the bowed bass sweeps through Leiser’s violin and strings. The reflection of the vulnerability of human connection is beautifully woven with Ferguson and Vos on vocals.
“The Night”, shivers into the landscape of an amalgam of Appalachian and American Roots it is a kaleidoscope of folk music featuring Jolliff (mandolin), Greuel (vocals, boots and hands), Leiser (fiddle, vocals, boots and hands) and Odin (upright bass, boots and hands).
The warm sensation burrowing into the mind of summer twilight fluttering between bowed bass and violin in “From Me to You” is breathtaking. The compilation of artistry colors ones memories with beauty. Staehly adds an extra dimension on piano.
“Part II” baths you in light, the bowed bass blends gently with fiddle letting the space become an invitation to get lost in the magnificent sound. Ferguson intertwines lyrics into an ethos of Americano that is untouched.
The gentle pulsing intro of “Fuel the Tide”, spins a tapestry of lyrics and instruments before pitching you into a rather honky-tonk number, “Blind”.
The final song, “I Won’t Forget You”, is linear and sparse braiding with just Ferguson, Leiser and Odin seamlessly together.
Ferguson kicks off his summer tour on May 16, 2018 in Madison, Wisconsin. For additional tour dates please click here.
Intro – P. Ferguson
Howl – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic Guitars, Vocals); Kenny Leiser (Violin, Strings); Samual Odin (Bowed & Upright Bass); Sarah Vos (Vocals)
The Night – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic Guitars, Vocals, Boots & Hands); Adam Greuel (Vocals, Boots & Hands); Jacob Jolliff (Mandolin); Kenny Leiser (Fiddle, Vocals, Boots & Hands); Samual Odin (Upright Bass, Boots & Hands)
From Me to You – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic Guitar, Vocals); Kenny Leiser (Violin, Strings);
Samual Odin (Upright and Bowed Bass, Strings); Chad Staehly (Piano); Sara Vos (Vocals)
Part II – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic Guitars, Vocals); Adam Greuel (Vocals); Jacob Jolliff (Mandolin); Kenny Leiser (Fiddle, Vocals, Strings); Samual Odin (Upright and Bowed Bass, Strings); Sarah Vos (Vocals)
Fuel The Tide – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic Guitars, Vocals); Kenny Leiser (Fiddle, Vocals);
Samual Odin (Upright Bass)
Blind – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Vocals); Adam Greuel (Vocals); Kyle Keegan (Drums); Kenny Leiser (Fiddle, Vocals); Samual Odin (Upright Bass); Chad Staehly (Piano and Organ)
I Won’t Forget You – Pat Ferguson (Acoustic Guitar, Vocals); Kenny Leiser (Violin, Strings, Vocals); Samual Odin (Bowed Bass, Strings)
Please Be With Me (digital only)
Balsam Range with special guest John Driskell Hopkins from the Zac Brown Band
Red Clay Theatre, Duluth, GA
February 17, 2018
Photographer: Michael Podrid