The Latest Shows We've Recorded

Friday, April 30, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0092 -- Billy Joe Shaver -- Georgia On A Fast Train


Last of FRR's First Annual Month Of Train Songs. This comes from one of my never-seend-the-light-of-day recordings from my Ohio days. This was back when BJS still had the old band with Bobby Brown and Cornbread and all the boys. I miss that band. [I swear I had this planned out and the email drafted before BJS was acquitted of shooting that fella in Waco. Viva la Shaver!]

Date: 2004.05.13

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0091 -- The Gougers -- Runaway Train


As we wind down FRR's First Annual Month Of Train Songs, we come sliding into the proverbial roundhouse with a now defunct band (The Gougers) that has given way so that other bands (The Trishas & St Cloud) might rise from the wreckage.

Artist: The Gougers

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Friday, April 23, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0090 -- Justin Townes Earle -- The Ghost Of Virginia


Of all the train songs I've ever heard for the first time in the last couple of years, this Justin Townes Earle song is far-and-away my favorite.

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Alt-512's Monthly Album Reviews & Recommendations

In sharp contrast to the speed that seemed to rush February and March, April has been been moving by a nice leisurely pace and we're just now getting around to writing up James Keyes' Ruminations which we've been listening to for a good chunk of the month.

The first thing that strikes us is Keyes' voice which immediately conjurs recollections of the rasp inherent to the likes of Otis Gibbs and Ryan Bingham coupled with the low wash of fellow New Englanders Slaid Cleaves and/or Rod Picott. The songs themselves fall somewhere in the Ray Wylie Hubbard and Gurf Morlix realm in terms of the sense of spiritualism and stripped down honesty. Sometimes, less is more. And that is definitely the case with Keyes' Ruminations.

Our notes:
-"Chapter Six" is interesting in its use of overdubbed clips from a reading of Genesis Chapter Six. Having spent a lot time in church and Sunday schools studying the bible in a former life, we dig this song. The coolness factor on "Chapter Six" is off the charts - but probably only for us.
-On "Where Have You Been", when Keyes says "the weeds", we swear we can almost definitely hear Tom Waits saying "Louise, Louise."
-None of the songs are really pretentious or full of themselves or, hell, even indulgent really. They all get to the point, make the point and clear the way for the next. Impressive, really. A lesser artist might have strung these songs into something beyond Keyes' easy succinctness but the 44 minutes of Ruminations' 15 songs speed by with effortless ease keeping the listener fully engaged and entertained.
-Our other favorites from this record are the intro "Hardliner", "Work Song", "Black Ceiling", "When Will I Be Free", "Little Lamb" and "SSG".
-All in all seven or eight tracks made it onto the iPod and that's quite a shot better that most.

We're hoping Keyes makes his way to Austin very soon. Until then, we'll be digging this record that's equal parts of a whole lot of the things we love.

Slaid Cleaves Live 'Down At The Horseshoe Lounge'

Slaid Cleaves Live and Down At The Horseshoe Lounge (2010.04.20) / my crappy iphone pic

In a completely unpublicized and hush-hush way, Slaid Cleaves recorded a live record at the Horseshoe Lounge last night (April 20, 2010). Well, it might turn into a live record. All the elements were there.
-Slaid and Michael O'Connor played a whole slew of his greatest hits.
-There was a gent there recording the whole thing to an Alesis 8-track recorder.
-A bunch of people somehow got word of the show and brought their friends (I'd estimate the crowd at around a hundred folks).
-The crowd was very quiet, enthusiastic and appreciative (which if you've been to the 'Shoe, you know is not the case. Ever.)
-Slaid hedged his bets after the first warm-up song saying that they were recording and if the recording turned out well, it might make it onto a cd. He didn't say the words "Live CD" so I reckon it could end up as filler at the end of a studio record. Then again, he didn't not say "Live CD" so who the hell knows?
-Slaid also encouraged folks to play shuffleboard and pool (but not the jukebox). I can only presume this encouragement was geared towards capturing some of the ambiance that drives the character of the Horseshoe.

I have loved Slaid's music for a long long time and honestly wonder why it took so long to have a run at making Live 'Down At The Horseshoe Lounge' happen (or whatever the name ends up being if at all). I'm glad it happened when it did and glad I was able to be there. I hope Team Slaid are able to get something usable from last night. And if they didn't, maybe they'll try again sometime soon.

Slaid has a penchant for taking his time in between studio records with new original material [Broke Down in 2000, Wishbones in 2004 and Everything You Love Will Be Taken Away in 2009]. I mention that only because a live cd would help fill some of the gap between the last album and the next in the same way that Unsung did in 2006 [sidebar: damn, seems to me like it was more recent than 2006].

In digging through my own Slaid archives, I found two live recordings of "Horseshoe Lounge" five-and-a-half years apart that I've included below. The first of which is from Little Brother's in Columbus, OH amazingly / coincidentally six years to the day from yesterday's show. The other is from the Cactus Cafe this past December. [Download the mp3s from the links below]

2004.04.20 - Little Brothers - Columbus, OH

2009.12.10 - The Cactus Cafe - Austin, TX

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0089 -- Scott Miller -- The Amtrak Crescent


FRR's First Annual Month Of Train Songs keeps rolling along with Scott Miller's "Amtrak Crescent".

Artist: Scott Miller

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Friday, April 16, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0088 -- The Devil Makes Three -- Play A Train Song


Trying to get this out on Friday [what happened to my Friday?]. DM3 does a Snider song (thanks to my friends in Chi-Town for this one). Yes!

Date: 2009.06.04

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Quotes From The Show, Part VIII

Mike Herrera from Tumbledown pontificates on Monday nights. Make sure to listen to both clips, both the banter and the Texas Medley. The Texas Medley includes "Home On The Range", "Deep In The Heart Of Texas" and "Amazing Grace" before closing with more of "Home On The Range" and the crowd even fills in during the right moments of "Deep In The Heart of Texas."

"I like this crowd. It's cool. It's like Monday nights are all for the professional drinkers out there. You know, you don't see any weekend warriors out on a Monday night. No no no."
-Mike Herrera, The Mohawk, 2010.04.12


The Texas Medley:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0087 -- Todd Snider -- Play A Train Song


Is a song about a guy wanting to hear a train song actually a train song like "Wreck Of The Old 97"? I suppose the train song tent is large enough that there's no harm to including a few fringe train songs on the official podium of train songs. Why the hell not?

Incidentally, in this song, Todd Snider has one of my favorite lines ever in song: "girl, you're hotter than the hinges hanging off the gates of hell."

Artist: Todd Snider backed by members of the South Austin Jug Band

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.


Friday, April 9, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0086 -- Danny Schmidt -- Blue Railroad Train


Danny Schmidt is the best songwriter, dead or alive, not named Bob Dylan. There I said it. As far as I can tell this is Danny's only train song although it's really a train song in name only, which for the purposes of our First Annual Month of Train Songs, works just fine. I guess this hints at the question we'll investigate further on Tuesday: is a song about train songs a train song itself?

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Some Upcoming Shows Around The Austin Area

We've got a few good shows coming up over the next week or so here in Austin.

Thursday 4/8 - Saturday 4/10
Thursday, the 8th, we'll be checking out our favorite bluegrass (?) band in Austin, the Flatcar Rattlers, at Jovita's from 8p-10p.
If that isn't your thing, you could always check out Lucero and Shooter Jennings at Emo's Thursday.
Friday night, April 9th, the Alt-512 gang will be hitting up The Triple Crown in San Marcos for Mark Jungers' monthly happy show before heading to the Broken Spoke for the rarest-of-the-rare full band show by Chris Wall.
Saturday, the 10th, Mark Stuart and The Bastard Sons (née the Bastard Sons Of Johnny Cash) will be holed up at the Mean Eyed Cat.
I think we can all agree that's quite a three-day stretch. Well, you ain't seen nothin' yet. Next week, for the middle of April, has a bunch of great shows that aren't to be missed.

Sunday 4/11 - Saturday 4/17
Alt-512 perennial favorite Roger Alan Wade will be playing Poodie's on Sunday 4/11, the Saxon on 4/13 and the Mean Eyed Cat on 4/14.
Monday night will feature sort-of-odd-couple Cory Branan and Mike Herrera's Tumbledown at the Mohawk.
Gruene Hall will feature three of our favorite songwriters in the round on Tuesday: Mark Jungers, Adam Carroll and Owen Temple.
Ben Kweller and the Old 97s will drop by Stubb's on Wednesday night.
Stubb's will again be busy with Charlie Robison and sister-in-law Kelly Willis on Friday the 16th.
Finally, Saturday the 17th will find Chris Knight at Gruene Hall and Danny Schmidt at a house concert in Austin.

If you need info on any of these shows, we've got the calendar right above which has more info on set times and venue addresses than I'm inclined to include here.

Three other notes:
(1) Southern Culture On The Skids starts their five-night stand at the Continental tonight at midnight.
(2) Old Settler's Music Festival starts April 15th and has an amazing lineup, as always.
(3) Junior Brown is in the midst of a series of Sunday shows at the Continental Club that seems to run on-and-off until the end of May. Check the Continental's schedule for more details.

[FairRetailRecordings] #0085 -- Brock Zeman -- The Train In Me


Continuing with FRR's First Annual Month Of Train Songs, I'm including Brock Zeman with Blair Hogan and Dan Walsh (one of my three favorite guitar players) doing one of my favorite BZ songs.

Artist: Brock Zeman

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.

Friday, April 2, 2010

[FairRetailRecordings] #0084 -- Will Kimbrough -- Another Train


Ah, Will Kimbrough. I've made no secret about my Kimbrough-love through the years. And it runneth deep. Will is such a great talent and he's finally starting to get some major love in the form of getting a cut ("Wings") on the latest Jimmy Buffett record in addition to his own great records. But this isn't "Wings". This is FRR's First Annual Month of Train Songs, baby! As such, I've included another of Will's efforts called "Another Train" from Stingaree a few years ago.

Enjoy. And support your local music scene.