Troy Andrews is a trombone player from way back (although he also more than capably handles the trumpet, organ, drums and more). He graduated from the same New Orleans high school music program as Branford and Wynton Marsalis and Harry Connick Jr. Having grown up in a musical family in NOLA’s Treme neighborhood, Andrews, despite only being 31, has already been playing the trombone for more than 25 years. Getting his start at such a young age earned him the name Trombone Shorty: He first played Jazz Fest, taking the stage alongside Bo Diddley, when he was only four. And these days, he’s got the honor of closing out America’s best festival every year. But it’s Andrews’ talent, not his age (or his height), that’s the reason Trombone Shorty (above, covering the Meters’ “It Ain’t No Use” live in studio for KCRW FM) has toured the world, playing an exhilarating combination of funk, hip-hop, jazz and rock—not to mention working alongside the likes of Foo Fighters and Lenny Kravitz. His fourth studio album, Parking Lot Symphony (stream it below), and first on Blue Note Records, arrived this past April, earning him comparisons to Stevie Wonder and Earth, Wind & Fire. AllMusic said he “fully embraces the organic ’70s-style R&B he’s heretofore only touched on.” Further adding that the album is one of his “most balanced productions, equal parts New Orleans R&B sophistication and loose, block-party fun.” That fun is what makes Trombone Shorty such an engaging, don’t-miss entertainer and performer. Catch him live at Terminal 5 on Friday and Saturday. L.A. four-piece Vintage Trouble open both shows.
Tag Archives: Foo Fighters
John Moreland – The Bowery Ballroom – June 7, 2017
John Moreland writes songs of redemption, songs written for the downtrodden that are so white hot with purpose they straddle the line between cautionary tales and gospel. Armed with a voice that conjures up how the Boss might sound after a bad night and the vindicated pessimism of Townes Van Zandt, Moreland doesn’t tug at your heartstrings as much as he eviscerates them. In his interview on the podcast Walking the Floor with Foo Fighters lead guitarist—and country music aficionado—Chris Shilett, Moreland explained that he had cut his teeth on punk and hardcore early in life, but everything had changed as soon as he heard the music of Steve Earle. After listening, Moreland quickly got it into his head that he could write songs that could equal Earle’s power and started recording and touring the country nonstop. After years of paying his dues, the Tulsa, Okla., singer-songwriter recently signed with 4AD for his third album, Big Bad Luv, and brought his tour to a packed Bowery Ballroom last night.
Will Johnson played solo to open the show. With a deep D-tuned guitar and a voice as rough as a tree trunk after a chainsaw exposed its bare wood, he mesmerized the audience with songs from his solo career as well as his criminally underrated band Centro-matic. The highlight was his meditation on loss, “Just to Know What You’ve Been Dreaming,” with the refrain “But when you’re not around, nothing makes a sound” landing like a slow moving haymaker. And then when John Moreland began, you could practically hear teardrops falling into beer glasses between the notes throughout the Bowery Ballroom. Accompanied by fellow singer-songwriter John Calvin Abney on lead guitar, harmonica and piano, Moreland ran through his songbook with efficiency, barely taking the time to address the crowd. Not that the audience needed anything more from him as everyone in the venue was completely captivated as soon as he sat down in his chair to play.
Moreland’s songs did the heavy lifting, and he showcased old favorites from In the Throes, High on Tulsa Heat as well as Luv. The best song of his main set was the new song “Lies I Chose to Believe,” which took on a new life live, stripping away the full-band arrangement and allowing his words to dig in deeper than they could on record. Moreland’s brief encore consisted of two songs from his breakthrough, In the Throes, “Break My Heart Sweetly” and “I Need You to Tell Me Who I Am,” which had the crowd clamoring for more. After the show, the audience quickly formed a massive line heading down to the merch table on the first floor. It was easy to see that if anyone had never heard of Moreland before this show, they had just been converted. —Patrick King | @MrPatKing
Tags: 4AD, Big Bad Luv, Bowery Ballroom, Bruce Springsteen, Centro-matic, Chris Shiflett, Foo Fighters, High on Tulsa Heat, In the Throes, John Calvin Abney, John Moreland, Live Music, Lower East Side, Music, New York City, Patrick King, Review, Steve Earle, Townes Van Zandt, Will Johnson
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Nate Mendel is undoubtedly best known as the bassist in Foo Fighters (and for holding down the low end for Sunny Day Real Estate prior to that), but just like Dave Grohl went from being just the drummer in some band to becoming the driving force—as singer, songwriter and (rhythm) guitarist—behind his own group, Mendel is fronting his own new project, Lieutenant. “I’m not an enthusiast of solo projects,” says the new frontman. “Bands are bands for a reason and it seems that once the celery is out of the soup, you’re just left holding a stringy, watery vegetable. However, I knew there was more I wanted to do in music.” So he entered the studio, and with the help of a variety of musicians and producer Toshi Kasai, Mendel ended up with his very own new album, the recently released If I Kill This Thing We’re All Going to Eat for a Week (stream it below). NME declared, “The record is no vanity project, but a serious passion project,” and, furthermore, it’s an “impressive marriage of Sunny Day’s intimate soul purging and Foos’ powerful guitar heft, it’s a masterstroke of understated college rock.” Armed with a backing band, Lieutenant (above, performing “Belle Epoque”) are currently making their way up the East Coast, and you can catch them live on Saturday at Mercury Lounge. Vancouver, B.C., rock quartet Yukon Blonde open the show.
Tags: Foo Fighters, If I Kill This Thing We’re All Going to Eat for a Week, Mercury Lounge, Nate Mendel, Preview, Sunny Day Real Estate, Toshi Kasai, Video, Yukon Blonde
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Back in 1998, classmates Maja Ivarsson (vocals), Félix Rodríguez (guitar), Johan Bengtsson (bass) and Fredrik Blond (drums) decided to form a band. Shortly thereafter, the four met Jesper Anderberg (keys and guitar) at a music festival, and the Sounds were officially born. Their debut album, the poppy, synthesizer-heavy Living in America (stream it below), arrived in 2002. The Swedish five-piece has remained busy ever since, touring the world—with such bands as Foo Fighters, the Strokes and Panic! at the Disco—appearing at festivals—like Warped Tour—and continuing to record new music. The Sounds (above, performing “Weekend” live for Rhapsody) put out their fifth full-length, Weekend (stream it below), last fall. AllMusic enthusiastically suggested that it’s a “combination of great songwriting and stylistic dance music cross-pollination that makes the Sounds’ Weekend speed by in a burst of inspired pop euphoria.” See them play Webster Hall on Thursday night. Blondfire and Ghost Beach open the show.
Tags: Bliondfire, Félix Rodríguez, Foo Fighters, Fredrik Blond, Ghost Beach, Jesper Anderberg, Johan Bengtsson, Living in Amercia, Maja Ivarsson, Panic! at the Disco, Preview, the Sounds, the Strokes, Video, Warped Tour, Webster Hall, Weekend
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