Tag Archives: Randy Newman

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Catch Damien Jurado at The Bowery Ballroom on Sunday Night

November 4th, 2016

Surrounded by a city bursting with grunge music, Damien Jurado rose up in mid-’90s Seattle making a name for himself as an acoustic-folk singer-songwriter. More interested in blazing his own path rather than following the trail, he’s modeled his career after musicians with unpredictable discographies, like Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Randy Newman—his work often filled with what AllMusic calls “concise, literate tales of quiet, everyday despair.” Recently, Jurado (above, performing “Exit 353” and “Kola” for Bird on the Wire) has been delving more into psychedelia, as witnessed on the ’70s-influenced trilogy of Maraqopa (stream it below), Brothers and Sisters of the Eternal Son (stream it below) and this year’s Visions of Us on the Land (stream it below). “As works of mood-altering music go, Jurado has upped the dosage with Visions. It’s a harrowing trip, led by a guide who’s all too familiar with the territory,” according to NPR Music. And AllMusic adds: “It’s an intense and trippy odyssey, one that should make fans old and new appreciative of Jurado’s depth.” Make your weekend last just a little bit longer with Damien Jurado at The Bowery Ballroom on Sunday night. Doug Keith opens the show.

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Kick Off Your Weekend with Matthew E. White at Rough Trade NYC

August 4th, 2015

Make no mistake: Matthew E. White is a musician. He’s a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and arranger, and he even formed his own label, Spacebomb Records, which uses a house band—led by White on guitar, Cameron Ralston on bass, Pinson Chanselle on drums and Trey Pollard on guitar—for all of its work. “White has built a potential powerhouse the likes of which haven’t been seen since the late ’50s and ’60s, since the heyday of Motown and Stax Records,” according to New Republic. “A studio that produces records with a house band and a rotating stable of musicians, taking advantage of local creativity and regional flavor.” Growing up in Virginia Beach and the Philippines, White listened to the likes of the Band, Curtis Mayfield, Brian Wilson, and ’60s and ’70s R&B, and he’s worked with Justin Vernon, Megafaun, Natalie Prass, the Mountain Goats and Sharon Van Etten, in addition to leading the avant-garde jazz big band Fight the Big Bull. In theory, that should really be enough for just one guy. But for Matthew E. White, it wasn’t. So Spacebomb Records put out his acclaimed debut full-length, Big Inner (stream it below), in 2013, reminding many of Randy Newman’s early work, thanks to White’s unique take on things. And he followed that with this year’s exceptional Fresh Blood (stream it below), which the Guardian labeled “a delicious second helping,” and about which, NPR Music opined, “The high quality of performance and arranging, the generous spirit of its narrator, the ear-candy moments of instant comfort that permeate Fresh Blood—all that is how Matt White and his crew salute their inspirations.” And as good as his albums are, White and Co. (above, doing “Rock & Roll Is Cold” for KEXP FM) are even better live. So don’t miss him on Friday night at Rough Trade NYC.

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The Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra Play Mercury Lounge

January 6th, 2015

The Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra have been winning over fans in their native New Zealand going on a decade now. And in addition to their ukes, the band—a very talented 10 to 12 strong, occasionally including the Oscar-winning Bret McKenzie, of Flight of the Concords fame—employs accompanying instruments, exceptional harmonies and a terrific sense of humor (come on, they’re a ukulele orchestra), but their music is no joke. The genre-hopping group hits bluegrass, country, rock, reggae and R&B while covering the likes of Prince, Kings of Leon, Pharrell and Randy Newman, to name just a few. After releasing four EPs (stream them below), the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra (above, performing “I Love You, Raylene”) released their first full-length—of Kiwi covers—Be Mine Tonight (stream it below), last year. And now they’re making a rare Stateside appearance for a tour that kicks off tonight at Mercury Lounge. Local singer-songwriter and ukulele player Emilyn Brodsky and New Zealand comedian Steve Wrigley open the show.

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Hard Working Americans Launch Tour Tomorrow at Bowery Ballroom

January 22nd, 2014

Singer-songwriter Todd Snider’s newest project is the folk-hippie supergroup Hard Working Americans, which sees him teamed up with Widespread Panic’s Dave Schools on bass, the Chris Robinson Brotherhood’s Neal Casal on guitar and vocals, Great American Taxi’s Chad Staehly on keys and Duane Trucks on drums. They came together last year to record an eponymous album of covers (stream it below) by the likes of Randy Newman, Lucinda Williams and Hayes Carll. Schools, who produced it with Snider in Bob Weir’s TRI Studios in Northern California, said to American Songwriter “that the idea was for a sort of dream-team band to basically deconstruct and reconstruct these cover songs in our own image.” Their LP came out yesterday and Hard Working Americans kick off a nine-date tour tomorrow night at The Bowery Ballroom.

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Matthe E. White and the Spacebomb Revue Come to Williamsburg

December 4th, 2013

Make no mistake: Matthew E. White is a musician. He’s a singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and arranger, and he even founded his own label in Richmond, Va., Spacebomb Records, which uses a house band—led by White on guitar, Cameron Ralston on bass and Pinson Chanselle on drums—for all of its work. Growing up in Virginia Beach and the Philippines, White listened to the likes of the Band, Curtis Mayfield, Brian Wilson and Stax-era R&B, and he has worked with Justin Vernon, Megafaun, the Mountain Goats and Sharon Van Etten, in addition to leading the avant-garde jazz big band Fight the Big Bull. In theory, that should really be enough for just one guy. But for Matthew E. White, it wasn’t. So last year, Spacebomb Records put out his acclaimed debut full-length, the soulful Big Inner (stream it below), reminding many of Randy Newman’s early work, thanks to White’s unique take on things. And upon the album’s release in the UK last winter, The Guardian said it “feels like a genuine revelation.” White (above, doing “Big Love” earlier this year at The Bowery Ballroom for Moshcam) is currently on tour with the Spacebomb Revue, which brings him, alongside electronic producer and multi-instrumentalist Dosh and Howard Ivans—a dance project led by the Rosebuds’ Ivan Howard—to Music Hall of Williamsburg tomorrow night.

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Matthew E. White Headlines The Bowery Ballroom on Monday

May 10th, 2013

Make no mistake: Matthew E. White is a musician. He’s a singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and arranger—and he even founded his own label, Spacebomb Records, which uses a house band—led by White on guitar, Cameron Ralston on bass and Pinson Chanselle on drums—for all of its work. Growing up in Virginia Beach and the Philippines, White listened to the likes of the Band, Curtis Mayfield, Brian Wilson and Stax-era R&B, and he has worked with Justin Vernon, Megafaun, the Mountain Goats and Sharon Van Etten, in addition to leading the avant-garde jazz big band Fight the Big Bull. In theory, that should really be enough for just one guy. But for Matthew E. White, it wasn’t. So last year, Spacebomb Records put out his acclaimed debut full-length, Big Inner (stream it below), reminding many of Randy Newman’s early work, thanks to White’s unique take on things. And upon the album’s release in the UK this past winter, The Guardian said it “feels like a genuine revelation.” White (above, doing “Will You Love Me” for WFUV FM) has spent the past month touring Europe, but you can see him on Monday night at The Bowery Ballroom.

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Houndmouth Are a Band on the Rise

April 10th, 2013

Houndmouth—Zak Appleby, Shane Cody, Matt Myers and Katie Toupin—from the farmlands of Kentuckiana, formed by chance in late 2011. Their influences include the Band (“Levon Helm is my hero,” says Cody), David Bowie, Randy Newman and the Faces. And as such, they make a kind of music perhaps best categorized as y’alternative (the Venn diagram overlap of Americana, blues, folk and rock). The quartet’s debut full-length, From the Hills Below the City, arrives in June, but if their self-titled EP (stream it below) is any indication, Houndmouth (above, doing “Penitentiary” for Close Shave Music at last year’s Forecastle Festival) just might follow the path of such like-minded bands as the Lumineers and the Head and the Heart. See them tonight at Mercury Lounge.