Birds of a feather were flocking outside at AURA Music Festival over the weekend. During Pink Talking Fish’s set on the festival’s opening Thursday night, pianist Holly Bowling joined the Pink Floyd/Talking Heads/Phish tribute band for a rousing version of Phish’s “Weekapaug Groove” to close out their set.Bowling is coming off a year in which she released Distillation Of A Dream: The Music Of Phish Reimagined For Solo Piano and embarked on her first headlining tour, cleverly adapting Phish’s catalog in a way we haven’t heard it before. Likewise, Pink Talking Fish are coming off a red hot workman-like 2015, really solidifying a name for themselves as one of the premier tribute bands in the scene.You can watch a good portion of PTF’s set from AURA including Bowling’s sit in below:And listen to full audio of the show, below:Setlist: Pink Talking Fish at AURA Music Festival, Live Oak, FL – 3/3/16Set: Shine On You Crazy Diamond> Nothing But Flowers> Moma Dance, Mother, Burning Down The House, Mike’s Song> Dogs> Psycho Killer> Dogs> Once In A Lifetime> Weekapaug Groove** with Holly Bowling
We’re saddened to report that beloved guitarist Thomas Fekete from Surfer Blood has passed away at the age of 27. Fekete had been suffering with cancer for years, and passed away from the disease last night. Fekete’s wife Jessica confirmed the news via a GoFundMe page that was set up to help with medical expenses.Fekete formed the Florida rock group Surfer Blood back in 2009, and continued to build a following with regular performances and three full-length albums. When the GoFundMe page was first announced, a number of high profile artists like Real Estate, Yoko Ono and Yo La Tengo auctioned off new tracks to help contribute to the cause. Unfortunately, the disease eventually took hold in the end, costing Fekete his life.The band posted the following message in memorial of their late guitarist:RIP Thomas Fekete. As Jessice Fekete wrote in the GoFundMe group, “Now, my beautiful angel, go find Bowie and jam.”
During a recent Formula 5 performance at Bridgeport, CT venue The Acoustic, Steve Pollak aka The Dude of Life from Phish lore, sat in during the group’s set to take on lead vocals for a performance of “Crimes of the Mind“, a song The Dude co-wrote with Trey Anastasio back in the day. The song appears on his 1994 album of the same name, which was recorded in 1991 and features Phish as the backing band.The eclectic Upstate New York jam act has a busy summer ahead of them. Check them out on the road (tour dates below), and watch the band’s performance with The Dude Of Life.[cover photo courtesy of Scott Harris Photo]
Anybody with half of a brain and some common sense can tell you that the War on Drugs, which was begun during President Richard Nixon‘s term back in 1971, is clearly not working. It has effectively sent millions of Americans to prison for years. However, it can’t be argued that the inner cities have suffered the most from this insane policy, that is still very much in effect to this day, due to the inherent racism built into the ill-willed campaign.In a video op-ed with The New York Times, rap mogul Jay Z discusses the history of the War on Drugs and its devastating effects on the inner city community, along with the United States having the highest rate of incarceration in the world; higher than China, Russia, Iran, and Cuba – all countries that our very own government (and many our own citizens) look down upon for their supposed “autocratic and oppressive” policies. He certainly brings up a good point.Grateful Dead Fan Timothy Tyler Has Been Granted Clemency By President Barack Obama“Young men like me who hustled became the sole villain and drug addicts lacked moral fortitude,” Jay Z says. Under the administration of Ronald Reagan, a serious crackdown took place within the inner cities, where drug users and dealers were blamed as being the only reason for the problems the communities faced, failing to mention local and national policies cutting and defunding everything from schools, community centers, after-school programs, jobs being outsourced, you name it.While Jay-Z does acknowledge many States changing laws, such as Colorado and Washington, helping to fight the War on Drugs, he does go on to say that there are still discrepancies even within these new policies: “Venture capitalists migrate to these states to open multi-billion dollar operations, but former felons can’t open a dispensary,” Jay Z says. “Lots of times those felonies were drug charges caught by poor people, who sold drugs for a living but are now prohibited from participating in one of the fastest-growing economies.”Take a listen to the video below, which features artwork from Molly Crabapple:[via Rolling Stone]
2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the famed Saratoga Performing Arts Center, which traditionally hosts groups like Dave Matthews Band and Phish for summer tour runs. As the prized venue celebrates its 50th, they have released an hour-long documentary chronicling its storied history.In that feature, the documentary talks to Dave Matthews and asks him for any particular SPAC moments that stood out in his mind. Matthews talks about performing with Phish’s Trey Anastasio in the clip, and how Anastasio was returning to form with an emotionally-charged performance.As Relix points out, Matthews says, “I love Trey’s playing, but that particular night was one of the most beautiful, eloquent times I’ve ever heard him play… He hadn’t played for a while. He just came out that night and it was one of those really magical moments.”Watch the moment itself in the fan-shot video below.[Photo from Dave & Friends @ MSG]
Classic rocker Neil Young returned to the Telluride Town Park last night after playing the scenic setting for the first time on Friday, where he debuted four new songs on Friday, an impressive feat for any 70-year-old rocker. The songs “Hang Gliders,” “Texas Rangers,” “Peace Trail,” and “Show Me,” all working titles, were reintroduced last night by the singer/songwriter, along with his recently-released “Indian Givers”. The song was written in protest of the current situation with the Dakota Pipeline.The show also featured a number of Young’s biggest hits, opening again with “After The Gold Rush” and “Heart Of Gold,” before heading into “Sugar Mountain” and “Old Man”. The set also featured a “Harvest Moon” and “Cortez The Killer”, before ending with versions of “Fuckin’ Up” and “Rockin’ In The Free World”. The evening closed with “Roll Another Number”.Thanks to YouTube user Brosef Wilson, you can enjoy some of these favorites in the videos below:After The Gold RushOld ManHarvest MoonRoll Another NumberNeil Young @ Telluride Town Park 10/1/16:Set I: After The Gold Rush, Heart Of Gold, Sugar Mountain, Old Man, Mother Earl (Natural Anthem), Out On The Weekend, Human Highway, “Hang Gliders”, “Indian Givers”, “Show Me”, Harvest Moon, Words, “Texas Rangers”, Walk On, WinterlongSet II: Down By The River, Powderfinger, “Peace Trail”, When You Dance I Can Really Love, Cortez The Killer, Fuckin’ Up, Rockin’ In The Free WorldEncore: Roll Another Number[Setlist via sugarmtn.org / Photo via @telluridedotcom]
Just last week, we reported on Warren Haynes working in the studio on new material with Gov’t Mule. It was Jambands.com that followed up with the master guitarist, asking him about everything from The Last Waltz tour to his plans with Mule for 2017 and beyond.After talking about his excitement for bringing The Last Waltz on the road, Haynes sets his sights on future Mule plans. He says, “We’re just wrapping up a new Gov’t Mule album, which, if all goes well, we’ll have out sometime in May. So once that’s out, we’ll be touring with Gov’t Mule for the next year, year and a half or so. We’ll be going to Europe and Japan and all over the world to spread the word. Of course, there’s always other projects going on, but that will be the main focus for me from that time forward.”Looks like Mule fans can rest easy knowing their favorite band isn’t going anywhere, any time soon.
LA-based quintet Thumpasaurus continues to impress with their inimitable electro-funk-and-groove persona, original to a group of college students who probably have more fun than you. Coming together at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music, the founding members of Thumpasaurus have developed an eclectic, homemade aesthetic unlike anything else this side of the Milky Way. With a homebase at USC’s famed underground performance venue YONI, where they’ve opened for cult acts like KNOWER and Vulfpeck, Thump has honed their ability to get people dancing. Expect a full album on March 1st.Comprised of Lucas Tamaren on guitar and vocals, Paul Cornish on keys, Logan Kane on bass, Henry Solomon on saxophone, and Henry Was on drums, Thumpasaurus is a force to be reckoned with. Their analog, classic rhythm-section setup recalls 70s funk acts, but the vibes they bring are purely new age, influenced by LA’s up-all-night electronic music scene. The result of these influences are everything you hear in the track below, exclusively through L4LM.“The heavy combination of rock n roll and dance influences in ‘Dance Like It’s Your Life’ feels like an urgent call to action to stay moving, dancing, positive and awake,” says Tamaren of the t’chune. “For us, dancing is a matter of life and death and we wanted to make the sound and message of the tune live, raw, bass heavy and aggressive to grab people’s attention, make them stop what they were doing, and dance, like it’s their lives.”Of course, music translates differently from studio recordings to live environments. “We were playing this at a house party a few weeks back and these three Japanese girls jumped in and live translated the song into Japanese so we invited them to the studio and actually recorded a Japanese cut of it that we plan on releasing in Japan!,” Tamaren tells us. “Thump has always had an obsession with Japanese music and culture. Right now we’re listening to bands like Perfume and the soundtracks to Nintendo games. Anyway, one of our dreams is to have a following and play in Japan. We thought ‘dance like its your life’ would translate well in Japan so we asked three of our Japanese friends to help translate the song and overdub the English version in Japanese. They came to the studio wearing these sort of Hello Kittyish outfits and we tracked the Japanese version of the song, which we will be releasing on a Japanese platform shortly! The lyrics to the song are simple, and the message is direct so we might even try some other languages… who knows!”We dig this. For kicks, check out the video of the Japanese girls live translating the song below:Thumpasaurus will be continuing their bi-monthly residency at Tenants of The Trees in Silverlake, Los Angeles on Wednesday 1/11 and 1/25. Be sure to follow them here, on their new funky website, and be on the look out to catch Thump in their natural habitat!
Last weekend, bluegrass fans and musicians alike flocked to The 44th Annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival, the annual bluegrass gathering nestled in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. The festival saw virtuosic super-pickers and all-star collaborations grace its stage, putting on masterful performances across its four days. With dozens of sets in one of the most scenic locales in Colorado, the festival is always a highlight of the summer, solidly ranking as one of the favorite destinations for bluegrass enthusiasts nationwide.Thursday had one of the biggest surprises of the festival. Country star Dierks Bently, who was already performing with The Travelin’ McCourys, was joined by none other than Del McCoury, who flew out as a surprise for the set. He was also joined by Chris Thile of the Punch Brothers and Sam Bush, making for a truly all-star collaboration and a stellar way to start the weekend. You can listen to the audio from the set below.Dierks Bently with The Travelin’ McCourys and Del McCouryAhead of this major surprise, Portland’s Fruition put on a fiery performance of their own, which topped many folks lists of favorite sets across the weekend. You can listen to their set below, courtesy of Terry TLP Lapointe.FruitionThe first night of the festival closed out with a performance by the Telluride House Band, which tapped Sam Bush, Béla Fleck, Jerry Douglas, Edgar Meyer, Bryan Sutton, and Stuart Duncan and saw surprise visitor Del McCoury perform as well. On Friday, as the festival kicked into high gear, Telluride saw stand-out performances by Lindsay Lou & The Flatbellys, Peter Rowan Dharma Blues featuring Jack Casady, and the Punch Brothers. Perennial favorite Greensky Bluegrass was charged up for their day-closing set on Friday night, putting on an energized performance that saw Sam Bush sit in for “Fixin’ To Ruin” and “Midnight Rider” and Bryan Sutton sit in for “Ain’t No Bread In The Breadbox.” You can listen to Greensky’s set below.Greensky BluegrassAfter making an appearance with Yonder Mountain String Band during the day, Sam Bush rocked his own band’s performance to help end Saturday ahead of Dispatch’s day-closing set. The Sam Bush Band was a highlight of many attendees’ weekends, with the King of Telluride proving exactly why he’s earned that title. You can watch his performance below, courtesy of Owen Perkins (and click here to find video of the rest of Sam Bush Band’s show).With the weekend of musical celebration coming to its close, Sunday saw performances by Béla Fleck & Chris Thile, Hot Rize (joined by Jerry Douglas), and Elephant Revival end the 44th Annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival on a high note. You can watch Hot Rize’s performance below, courtesy of Owen Perkins (and click here to find video of the rest of the set). Load remaining images Load remaining images Load remaining images Load remaining images Greensky Bluegrass | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Photo: Conrad Meyer Telluride House Band | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Lindsay Lou & The Flatbellys | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Fruition | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Dierks Bently with the Travelin’ McCourys | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Sam Bush | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images Load remaining images Load remaining images Norah Jones | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Travelin’ McCourys | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images Freddie and Francine | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images Elephant Revival | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Yonder Mountain String Band | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Dispatch | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images Load remaining images Jason Mraz | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer This year’s Telluride Bluegrass was one for the books, and we’re already looking forward to what 2018 has in store. To relive some of this year’s magic, you can check out Conrad Meyer’s photo galleries from the weekend below!The Tarp Run! | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Sarah Jarosz | Telluride Bluegrass 2017 | Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images Load remaining images Photo: Conrad Meyer Load remaining images
Grand Targhee Resort will host two exciting gatherings this summer when Targhee Fest and the Grand Targhee Bluegrass Festival take over the Alta, Wyoming property in July and August.Slated for July 13th to 15th, Targhee Fest will feature performances by Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Karl Denson (with their Allman Brothers tribute “Eat A Bunch Of Peaches”), The Funky Meters, The Wood Brothers, JJ Grey & Mofro, Hard Working Americans, Rhiannon Giddens, Brandon “Taz” Niederauer, The Dirty Knobs, Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds, and more. (Check out the full lineup here).Grand Targhee Bluegrass Festival will go down at the same location from August 10th to 12th. Attendees will be treated to performances by Greensky Bluegrass, The Infamous Stringdusters, I’m With Her, Fruition, Keller Williams & PettyGrass, Billy Strings, and more. (Check out the full lineup here).Tickets for both of the upcoming festivals will go on sale on March 19th via their respective websites.