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Thursday, March 20, 2014

featuring the very best of americana, and roots music
March 15, 2014
Scott Foley

John Moreland drove nine hours from Kansas to swing by the studios for a quick chat with me and Charles Hale of Nine Bullets and the Ajax Diner Book Club.  He's big man with a big voice.  The hair that's surrendering from the top of his head seems to be magically reenlisting between his chin and chest.  And when John Moreland opens his mouth to sing, he has a way with a lyric like no other.  I know I've touted his 2013 record, In the Throes, at least a couple times in my blog, and I'm not the only one.  Despite all the online attention, he still has concerts like the recent one in New Orleans, in which his audience was composed of "one dude". A friend told me about a Wayne "the Train" Hancock show in Albany, OR for which he and his wife were the only fans in attendance.  After waiting a spell just in case, he proceeded to perform an entire passionate set for his audience of two.  I find it fascinating that an artist like Moreland with such an obvious gift suffers from issues of anxiety and confidence.  As a former concert promoter behind at least a couple "one dude" shows, it's always a competition who feels worse about the turnout - the artist, the promoter or the fan.  But when a performer simply carries on from venue to venue making lifechanging music for whomever chooses to listen, you can't help but be impressed with that sort of commitment. 

*  John the Conqueror, "Waking Up To You"  Good Life  (Alive NaturalSound, 14)  D
*  John Moreland, "Nobody Gives a Damn About Songs Anymore"  In the Throes  (Last Chance, 13)
*  John Moreland, "I Need You To Tell Me"  live in studio
*  John Moreland, "God's Medicine"  live in studio
*  John Moreland, "Cataclysm Blues No. 4"  single  (Wax Packs, 14)
*  Parker Millsap, "Old Time Religion"  Parker Millsap  (Self, 14)
*  Austin Lucas, "Small Town Heart"  Stay Reckless  (New West, 13)
*  Andy Thomas' Dust Heart, "Poor You"  Wicked Dark  (Self, 13)  C
*  Dawn Landes, "Heel Toe"  Bluebird  (Western Vinyl, 14)  D
*  Jon Langford, "Lil' Ray o' Light"  Here Be Monsters  (In de Goot, 14)
*  Danny & the Champions of the World, "Other Days"  Stay True  (Loose, 13)
*  Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires, "Company Man"  Dereconstructed  (Sub Pop, 14)
*  Shonna Tucker & Eye Candy, "Family Dinner"  A Tell All  (Sweet Nectar, 13)
*  Slim Cessna's Auto Club, "Fifteen Years"  Slim Cessna's Auto Club  (Auto Club, 95)  C
*  Adam Carroll, "Spoken For"  Let It Choose You  (Gypsy Shuffler, 14)  D
*  Howlin' Brothers, "Sing a Sad Song"  Trouble  (Readymade, 14)  D
*   Delines, "I Won't Slip Up"  Colfax  (Delines, 14)  D
*  Luther Dickinson, "Mojo Mojo"  Rock 'n Roll Blues  (New West, 14)
*  Larry & His Flask, "Log Hearth & Ash"  By the Lamplight  (Xtra Mile, 13)
*  Simone Felice, "Gettysburg"  Strangers  (Dualtone, 14)
*  Tallgrass, "Dirt Farm"  Better Than Medicine (Self, 14) C,D
*  Lucinda Williams, "Nothing In Rambling (live)"  Lucinda Williams  (Self, 14)
*  RootJack, "Dead Man's Hand"  Oasis Motel  (Self, 14)
*  Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash, "New Old Story"  New Old Story  (Randm, 14)

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