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MarchFourth set to release first studio album of original material in five years, Produced by Ben Ellman of Galactic = Irresistible NOLA Magic

MarchFourth: A SteamFunk Rock-n-Roll Circus Party!

Head on over to Live For Live Music for the World Premiere of “Push It Back” Featuring Stanton Moore on drums → http://bit.ly/L4LM_MarchFourth_PushItBack

Portland, OR — Fifteen MarchFourth musicians traveled to New Orleans and spent ten days recording at The Parlor Recording Studio, making their fourth studio album, MAGIC NUMBER, their first in over five years. With Producer Ben Ellman (Galactic) and Engineer/Producer Mikael “Count” Eldridge (DJ Shadow, Tycho, Galactic, Trombone Shorty) at the helm, this album is full of the captivating grooves and brassy swagger you have come to expect from M4, plus a healthy dose of New Orleans magic, with guest appearance by Trombone Shorty, Stanton Moore (drums), and Matt Perrine (sousaphone). The album was fan-funded through Kickstarter and will be independently released September 30, 2016.

m4 cover art_magic number_FOIL.jpgMAGIC NUMBER represents a shift in the band’s musical evolution, featuring more vocals and guitar than our previous records.” Founding member and band leader, John Averill, who also sings and plays electric bass says,It is also the first record by “MarchFourth” (we officially dropped the “Marching Band” from our name).”

MarchFourth is a genre-breaking force of entertainment. This explosion of brassy funk, rock, and jazz emanates from twenty or so performers: musicians, acrobats, stilters and more, touring the country year-round, stealing the festival wherever they appear, taking audiences on a joy-inducing, booty-shaking, soul-stirring journey that defies categorization. Word on the street: You have to see it to believe it!

“From the first note to the last, the sound was pumping and the fun never stopped,” exclaimed USA Today. “It’s worth noting that there are serious musicians behind all the fun. I was a music major in college and it’s obvious these guys (and gals) have had lots of training and formal practice. Talented band geeks turned rebels. When one of the horn players steps up to improvise a solo, you know it’s going to be a treat.”

Working with a large group of talented songwriters and musicians in M4 made the project go really smoothly. Wherever the band goes they sort of set up camp… that led to a really creative working communal environment.” Producer Ben Ellman states, “It’s always exciting to work with a band that is open to experimentation and different possibilities. MarchFourth came in wanting to expand their sonic pallet from what they’ve done previously.”

Vertical MarchFourth by Matt Adamik“Unlike M4’s previous albums, recorded over weeks and months in our hometown of Portland, Oregon, getting the band to NOLA for a ten-day recording session really created an intensity and electricity you can feel throughout MAGIC NUMBER. Founding member, cymbal player, singer, and tour manager Dan Stauffer recalls, “After long days at The Parlor, the band members would go out to party on Frenchman Street and sit in on sets all over the city, meanwhile the producers, Ben and Count, would create mixes late into the night: that’s the mojo you can hear, everything going off for ten days straight.

Ellman attests, “The individual songwriters all had a clear vision of where the song should end up… there are different styles on the record, but as a whole it’s very cohesive. Very MarchFourth.” Four of the band’s members wrote the eleven songs on MAGIC NUMBER including John Averill, trombonist and singer Anthony Meade, trumpet player and singer, and project manager Paul Theodore Chandler, and electric guitarist and baritone sax Taylor Aglipay.

“The decision to work with Ben Ellman was a decision to make a modern sounding horn-driven record. This is certainly the biggest, punchiest, and rockinest M4 has ever sounded on an album. We certainly pushed the bounds of what we’re comfortable with genre-wise and performance-wise but we have a lineup of musicians right now who can handle it better than ever.” Anthony Meade says, “Putting the microscope on yourself in the recording studio is one of the most ego-shattering processes to undergo as a musician. Some people handle it better than others but we were able to get super deep in such a saturated environment.”

With a load of fresh new material, MarchFourth enters some new territories on this album, channeling some deep swampy voodoo vibes steeped in the brassy NOLA traditions. MAGIC NUMBER kicks of with the aptly named “Call to Action,” featuring the M4-style second line, calling on folks to get on up and “shake yo’ tail feathers!”

Stanton Moore makes a guest appearance on drums on the song “Push It Back” carrying the listener off on a royal litter of afro funk. Trombone Shorty blows a fiery solo on “Inventing the Wheel,” a musical journey into a heavy hypnotic groove; the track also features Ben Ellman on harmonica. Matt Perrine of Bonerama plays sousaphone on the uplifting and soul searching “Science (Free Your Mind)” which radiates all the energy of a street party in a full-on brassy explosion.

The title track’s visceral and thoughtful vocals draw you into a bombastic dream world you won’t want to leave, fusing eastern brass and the Wild West, with a little nod to Adam and the Ants. “The funky breakdown part popped into my head late one night after many Tecates. Lyrically, the song is about age, aging, the cycle of life, mortality, and coping with acceptance and resentment.” John Averill says, “I was 47 when we recorded it, and months later one of my best friends, Dave Camp (who subbed for M4 a few times on guitar) died of cancer at age 47… There’s something illusory to me about age and linear time, yet apparently each of us has a physical duration.”

“The Quarter” has more of a sexy feel, with a slinky hip-hop vibe mashing up the style of 50 Cent’s “In Da Club” with some Tower of Power or Chicago-style brass parts. Paul Theodore Chandler says of it, “Unlike the other tunes I wrote for the album, this one had been ‘road tested’ at shows for some time, but with different lyrics that were more appropriate to a live show. Wanting to rewrite the lyrics to fit the scope of this album, I set out to capture the anticipation and excitement of flying into a new city at night, being enveloped in the magic of that new place. And what better place to land than the French Quarter in New Orleans.”

Other songs on the album range from the bubbly and danceable pick-me-up “Hotstepper” with the unforgettable earworm of a hook, “Don’t tell my mom,” to the balkan brassy “Drunk Bears,” and the gypsy metal sound of “Jan Jar.” ”It’s a Trap” features the band as punk rock as a brass band can go, while “Endless Highway” speaks to timeless beauty in it’s brevity–a gentle closer to such a bold and flavorful album.

Further members of MarchFourth appearing on MAGIC NUMBER include Katie Presley on trumpet, Daniel Lamb on trombone, Jon VanCura on guitar, saxophonists Michelle Christiansen (alto), Cameron DePalma (tenor), Andy Shapiro (tenor), and Jon VanCura (baritone, bass), as well as drummer & percussionists Jenny DiDonato (snare, congas, bells, blocks, ride), Cheo Larcombe (bass drum, percussion), Will McKinney (toms, chocalho), and Jake Wood (snare, hi-hat).

“I always feel like we are some freaky kind of Jack-in-the-box. Put twenty of us in a 45-foot bus for 6-8 hours a day, then open the door onto a stage and watch us explode!” Stauffer says, “Old greats like Basie and the Duke were some of my first favorite jazz artists in college. I love the fact that I tour and play with all these fantastic horn players and travel around in this bus. We are very much like the big bands of old, except we also have electric guitars, stilt-walkers, acrobats, and a psychedelically wide palette of musical styles and costumery.”

MarchFourth will continue to tour all over the United States in support of this album through the fall and into 2017 with their colorful stage show full of energy and groove.

Widely recognized for the allure of their live show, MarchFourth breaks ground with their music in the forefront on MAGIC NUMBER.

For more information and news from the road, visit M4 at www.Marchfourthband.com, instagram.com/m4mb, facebook.com/marchfourthmarchingband, twitter.com/m4mb, and on YouTube.

MAGIC NUMBER Track Listing

  1. CALL TO ACTION 3:20 (Meade)
    2. THE QUARTER 4:06 (Chandler)
    3. MAGIC NUMBER 4:18 (Averill)
    4. PUSH IT BACK 2:51 *featuring Stanton Moore (Chandler)
    5. INVENTING THE WHEEL 6:51 *featuring Trombone Shorty and Ben Ellman (Meade)
    6. HOTSTEPPER 3:36 (Chandler)
    7. DRUNK BEARS 3:24 (Meade)
    8. JAN JAR 3:04 (Aglipay)
    9. SCIENCE (FREE YOUR MIND) 6:00 *featuring Matt Perrine (Meade)
    10. IT’S A TRAP! 4:13 (Meade)
    11. ENDLESS HIGHWAY 1:21 (Chandler)

Produced by Ben Ellman
Except tracks 1,2,4,6 produced by Ben Ellman and Count

MarchFourth’s ‘Magic Number’ 2016 Tour Dates
9/8 Thu – Central Park Sessions – Madison, WI
9/9 Fri – Be Here Now – Muncie, IN
9/10 Sat – TBA – Detroit, MI
9/11 Sun – Abbey Bar of Appalachian Brewery – Harrisburg, PA
9/13 Tue – Gypsy Sally’s – Washington, DC
9/14 Wed – The Rocks Off Concert Cruise – New York, NY
9/15 Thu – Port City Music Hall – Portland, ME
9/16-18 Fri-Sun – Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival – Fredericton, NB
9/22 Thu – Belly Up Aspen – Aspen, CO
9/23 Fri – Boulder Theater – Boulder, CO
9/24 Sat – Mishawaka Amphitheater – Bellvue, CO
9/25 Sun – Center for the Arts – Jackson, WY
9/30-10/1 Fri-Sat – Sierra Nevada Brewing Co’s Oktoberfest – Chico, CA
10/4 Tue – Harlow’s – Sacramento, CA
10/5 Wed – Don Quixote’s International Music Hall – Felton, CA
10/6 Thu – Great American Music Hall – San Francisco, CA
10/7-8 Fri-Sat – Sierra Nevada Brewing Co’s Oktoberfest – Chico, CA
10/28 Fri – Revolution Hall (2 shows!) – Portland, OR
12/15 Thu – Egyptian Theater – Boise, ID
12/17 Sat – Winthrop Barn Auditorium – Winthrop, WA

For more information and news from the road, visit M4 at www.Marchfourthband.com

 

 

JasonEskridge2.jpg
Jason Eskridge, Dave Yoke, Jared Stone, Matt Slocum, and Kevin Scott

Come Together as ‘The New Stew’ to Re-imagine Donny Hathaway’s Live Recording From 1972

Live at Nashville’s City Winery on Tuesday, September 13, 2016
$15 – $25; Doors 6pm, Showtime 8pm
www.citywinery.com/nashville/newstew091316.html

********************

The New Stew is a “super group” of a rotating cast of fine musicians from all genres of music. Select shows features Jason Eskridge (Zac Brown Band) on vocals, Dave Yoke (Susan Tedeschi Band, Dr. John, Scrapomatic) on guitar, Jared Stone (Stone’s Stew) on drums, Matt Slocum (Oteil and the Peacemakers, Col. Bruce Hampton & Aquarium Rescue Unit, The Lee Boys) on piano, and Kevin Scott on bass. This project was formed with one focused goal, to pay respect to those recordings that influenced the players and to re-imagine recordings that they feel should be heard and experienced in a live setting.

Let’s start with 1972. It was a defining year for American soul music. The New Stew is introducing their live version of Donny Hathaway’s 1972 Live recording in it’s entirely a Nashville City Winery this September. Live features traditional soul anthems including Hathway’s original “The Ghetto” ,” Marvin Gaye’s 1971 hit “What’s Going On,” Carole King’s “You’ve Got a Friend, and John Lennon’s “Jealous Guy.” The original album was recorded at two concerts: side one at The Troubadour in Hollywood, and side two at The Bitter End in Greenwich Village, Manhattan.

“I’m a huge fan of Donny Hathaway.” Eskridge says, “His art is one of my primary influences as an artist and vocalist. Being able to deliver this collection of his songs live at the beautiful City Winery is an amazing honor.”

All Music Guide writes, “Donny Hathaway’s 1972 Live album is one of the most glorious of his career, an uncomplicated, energetic set with a heavy focus on audience response as well as the potent jazz chops of his group…  ‘Voices Inside (Everything Is Everything)’ is another epic (14-minute) jam, with plenty of room for solos and some of the most sizzling bass work ever heard on record by Willie Weeks.”

The first musical homage was paid, to much acclaim, in Spring of 2016 when The New Stew made its debut in select cities in the east playing the classic Bill Withers – Live At Carnegie Hall album from start to finish. It is more than a labor of love, it is a way to allow the public to experience something again or in many cases the first time and reconnect with these classic recordings over four decades since they released.

In a recent interview with Examiner, Jared Stone, the group’s founder, talks about the inspiration to perform these recordings, “So why Withers and the Carnegie Hall album? It comes from a personal place for Stone, who was on the road with Derek Trucks several years ago when he received word that his father had passed away. ‘We were going to have a memorial service when the tour was done,’ Stone recalled. ‘Derek came into the room with a set of headphones and a discman and a copy of that CD, a copy of Donny Hathaway’s Live recording and a Sly and the Family Stone record. And it just stuck with me for years and years. To this day, it’s one of my favorite live recordings of all-time.’”

To get a taste of what the audience is in for, listen to Jason Eskridge performing Live from Carnegie Hall with The New Stew in Annapolis live from The Ram’s Head this past May over on SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/jared-stone-16…/new-stew-rams-head-sb

The New Stew is continuing to perform the Withers classic at select shows and introducing the Donny Hathaway album into their repertoire this fall, starting with this special evening of entertainment of The City Winery Nashville.

For more information, please visit www.facebook.com/thenewstew

Meet The Players in The New Stew:

Jason Eskridge
Living in Nashville Jason Eskridge has worked either as a background vocalist or opening act for countless award winning acts such as Zac Brown Band, Lyle Lovett, Randy Travis, Jonny Lang, Keb Mo’, Nicole C. Mullen, Marc Broussard, Robert Glasper, and Toby Mac. He has also been featured as a guest vocalist on numerous projects. Jason has traveled across the country playing various venues for anyone who has a listening ear. He has also had the opportunity to take his music abroad to South Africa, Amsterdam, India, and England. Jason’s latest release is entitled Live in Nashville. He is currently touring as a background vocalist for Zac Brown Band. Jason’s desire as a musician is to create music that causes the listener to love themselves, love their fellow man, think harder, think deeper, think broader, laugh until they cry, laugh when they want to cry, try something new, remember something old, and ultimately live life to the fullest.

Dave Yoke
Dave Yoke taught himself guitar in his native Anniston, Alabama drawing on the blues enthusiasm of his older siblings. He launched his career as a founding member of the long-standing, regionally popular Second Hand Jive. In the mid-90s, Yoke moved to Atlanta and became an in-demand session player, joining forces with (Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown associate) Dr. Dan Matrazzo. Yoke was then invited to become a full-time member of the oft-GRAMMY-nominated Susan Tedeschi Band and the legendary Dr. John. He is also a permanent member of Scrapomatic, with whom he tours and has recorded three albums. As testament to his blues roots, Dave is regularly invited to sit in with the Allman Brothers Band, the Tedeschi Trucks Band, and Americana artist Kristina Train.

Jared Stone
Jared Stone has done a few things. Played for country music stars, served in the USMC, drove minors across the country for merchandise %, studied music at universities, played a lot of jazz, made records, played on records, owned jazz clubs, built music venues, mended fences, promoted concerts and festivals, directed festivals and some other things that he is sure he can’t remember. He has a bad ankle from running in combat boots too long. He still plays the drums pretty good though and his band is Stone’s Stew.

Matt Slocum
Born in Newton, MA, Matt Slocum began his formal classical training at the age of 8, at the South Shore Conservatory of Music in Boston. At the age of 14 Matt moved to Alabama where he was accepted to the Alabama School of Fine Arts. In the summer of 1991, he attended the Berklee College of Music Performance Summer Program, and was rated among the top 10 musicians in the entire program. Matt is a keyboardist whose skills are predominantly in-demand with southern jazz, funk, fusion & blues musicians. Matt has been a member of the Oteil and the Peacemakers, Col. Bruce Hampton & Aquarium Rescue Unit, Jimmy Herring Band, Jeff Sipe Band, The Lee Boys, Susan Tedeschi band, and the Rich Robinson Band.

Kevin Scott
Born into a musical family in the heart of the Deep South, Kevin Scott takes the traditions of his upbringing and runs with it, forging a path and name for himself in today’s world of modern music. Currently based in Atlanta, Kevin has become the first-call bassist for a variety of performers, spanning many genres, in a city filled with generations of phenomenal players. Whether it be jazz, rock, funk, metal, R&B, hip-hop or any other art form that comes his way, Scott approaches every song with a deep pulse, bright spark, and ever-expanding tone in his playing.

CoreyGlover.jpg
Corey Glover, Dave Yoke, Jared Stone, Matt Slocum, and Kevin Scott
Come Together as ‘The New Stew’ to Re-imagine
Bill Withers – Live At Carnegie Hall

Live at Chicago’s City Winery on Monday, September 12, 2016
www.citywinery.com/chicago/tickets/the-new-stew-9-12.html

Live at Atlanta’s City Winery on Wednesday, September 14, 2016
www.citywinery.com/atlanta/the-new-stew-feat-corey-glover-presenting-bill-wither-s-live-at-carnegie-hall-in-it-s-entirety-9-14.html

***********

The New Stew is a “super group” of a rotating cast of fine musicians from all genres of music. Select shows feature Corey Glover (Living Colour, Galactic) on vocals, Dave Yoke (Susan Tedeschi Band, Dr. John, Scrapomatic) on guitar, Jared Stone (Stone’s Stew) on drums, Matt Slocum (Oteil and the Peacemakers, Col. Bruce Hampton & Aquarium Rescue Unit, The Lee Boys) on piano, and Kevin Scott on bass. This project was formed with one focused goal, to pay respect to those recordings that influenced the players and to re-imagine recordings that they feel should be heard and experienced in a live setting.

The first homage was paid, to much acclaim, in Spring of 2016 when the group made its debut in select cities in the east playing the classic Bill Withers – Live At Carnegie Hall album from start to finish. It is more than a labor of love, it is a way to allow the public to experience something again or in many cases the first time and reconnect with this classic recording over four decades since it’s release. The New Stew is continuing to perform the Withers classic this September at the City Wineries in Atlanta and Chicago.  The New Stew is also introducing another album into the mix, Donny Hathaway’s Live recording from 1972 at the City Winery in Nashville.

“The New Stew, a supergroup headed by Corey Glover won over Brooklyn Bowl last night almost immediately by ensuring they’d treat Bill Withers’ Live at Carnegie Hall as plenty more than a museum piece.” Chad Berndtson continues his review, “If you’re going to assemble an all-star band — and that definitely is the New Stew — you’d better bring a little more to the table than a pleasant re-creation or observation, and the group was fast to ensure that this concept would not only be pleasant, but also soul-nourishing in a way Withers himself would easily give thumbs-up.”

Bill Withers’
performance at Carnegie Hall on October 6, 1972, was recorded, and released as Live At Carnegie Hall in the following year. Recorded less than a year and a half since Withers quit his day job to pursue music full time, the then rising soul star commands the historic New York stage with veteran poise and power with songs like “Use Me”, “Ain’t No Sunshine”, and “Lean On Me.” In counting years as a live performer he was a novice but his ability to transform the hallowed venue to a tiny club and hold the audience’s attention like a conversation, a feat that heightens the intimacy of the performance and accentuates the intensity of the songs.

“Singer Corey Glover didn’t have to do too much homework to prepare for his upcoming tour celebrating soul singer Bill Withers’ 1973 album Live at Carnegie Hall”, writes Rudi Greenberg in The Washington Post. “It was the soundtrack to my life,” says Glover, 51. “My parents, whenever there was a road trip, that was the music that was playing.”

Withers’ along with his band moved fluidly, stretching out the songs beyond their initial recorded times, the subsequent jams take the audience on a ride the studio recordings were not able to do. The album ranks at number 27 on Rolling Stones’ list of the 50 Greatest Live Albums of All Time. Live At Carnegie Hall stands as one of the greatest live recordings of all time. and The New Stew is delighted to re-imagine this time-honored performance.

For more information, please visit www.facebook.com/thenewstew

Meet The Players in The New Stew:

Corey Glover
Corey Glover is a singer and songwriter who is best-known for his work in Living Colour and has toured as the vocalist for the funk band Galactic. Corey is a GRAMMY Award winner for Best Hard Rock Performance (Cult of Personality) and was also named best new Best New Artist at the MTV Video Music Awards (1989). Living Colour was also included to be one of the first bands on the inaugural Lollapalooza tour in 1991. With his band Living Color, Corey has released 6 albums. Living Colour blends hard rock, soul, funk and jazz to create a unique sound that is often copied but never duplicated. Cory and his band mates have remained sonic pioneers for over 2 decades. In addition to live music, in 2006 Corey began a co-headlining a national tour of Jesus Christ Superstar, playing the role of Judas. Corey performed as Judas with the National touring company until 2008 when he returned to his band to begin work on their next record.

Dave Yoke
Dave Yoke taught himself guitar in his native Anniston, Alabama drawing on the blues enthusiasm of his older siblings. He launched his career as a founding member of the long-standing, regionally popular Second Hand Jive. In the mid-90s, Yoke moved to Atlanta and became an in-demand session player, joining forces with (Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown associate) Dr. Dan Matrazzo. Yoke was then invited to become a full-time member of the oft-GRAMMY-nominated Susan Tedeschi Band and the legendary Dr. John. He is also a permanent member of Scrapomatic, with whom he tours and has recorded three albums. As testament to his blues roots, Dave is regularly invited to sit in with the Allman Brothers Band, the Tedeschi Trucks Band, and Americana artist Kristina Train.

Jared Stone
Jared Stone has done a few things. Played for country music stars, served in the USMC, drove minors across the country for merchandise %, studied music at universities, played a lot of jazz, made records, played on records, owned jazz clubs, built music venues, mended fences, promoted concerts and festivals, directed festivals and some other things that he is sure he can’t remember. He has a bad ankle from running in combat boots too long. He still plays the drums pretty good though and his band is Stone’s Stew.

Matt Slocum
Born in Newton, MA, Matt Slocum began his formal classical training at the age of 8, at the South Shore Conservatory of Music in Boston. At the age of 14 Matt moved to Alabama where he was accepted to the Alabama School of Fine Arts. In the summer of 1991, he attended the Berklee College of Music Performance Summer Program, and was rated among the top 10 musicians in the entire program. Matt is a keyboardist whose skills are predominantly in-demand with southern jazz, funk, fusion & blues musicians. Matt has been a member of the Oteil and the Peacemakers, Col. Bruce Hampton & Aquarium Rescue Unit, Jimmy Herring Band, Jeff Sipe Band, The Lee Boys, Susan Tedeschi band, and the Rich Robinson Band.

Kevin Scott
Born into a musical family in the heart of the Deep South, Kevin Scott takes the traditions of his upbringing and runs with it, forging a path and name for himself in today’s world of modern music. Currently based in Atlanta, Kevin has become the first-call bassist for a variety of performers, spanning many genres, in a city filled with generations of phenomenal players. Whether it be jazz, rock, funk, metal, R&B, hip-hop or any other art form that comes his way, Scott approaches every song with a deep pulse, bright spark, and ever-expanding tone in his playing.

MidwestSideStories_Front_FINAL-03.jpg

Singer/Songwriter, Chicago Farmer Releases Midwest Side Stories September 30, 2016

Get it early through Kickstarter at –>
http://bit.ly/KickstartChicagoFarmerMidwestSideStories

BLOOMINGTON, IL — Chicago Farmer, the moniker Bloomington, Illinois’ Cody Diekhoff performs and writes under, is set to independently release his 7th album, Midwest Side Stories, on September 30, 2016. Midwest Side Stories is about hope, depression, job loss, meth, skateboards, a divided nation, used cars, the late shift, farms, factories, the destruction of our environment, and still being around to sing about it. The new release contains ten tracks all of which were written by Diekhoff (pronounced dee-cough), with the exception of the John Hartford classic “I’m Still Here.”

Folk hero Todd Snider says, “I love Chicago Farmer’s singing and playing and songs, but it’s the intention behind the whole of his work that moves me to consider him the genuine heir to Arlo Guthrie or Ramblin’ Jack Elliott. He knows the shell game that goes on under folk music… which is sacred to me. Chicago Farmer is my brother; if you like me, you’ll love him.”

Lyrically driven, Chicago Farmer delves into the social and political issues of today’s world, taking it all in and putting it back out through music as a commentary on modern times in the Midwest. With his unfeigned and relatable approach, Chicago Farmer has earned a place in the heart of this generation’s rise of protest songs. He composes music written and sung by and for the working man, the “regular person”, bringing to mind modern day folk tales.

“I arrived here, kicking and screaming the day that I took the stage, I went searching for some kind of meaning, like words looking for a page. Came up empty and full of worry that nothing could cover the pain, then these songs and stories began unfolding like an umbrella in the rain.” This is the opening stanza to the first song “Umbrella”, a song that speaks of the power of music in people’s lives and is dedicated to songwriters everywhere, including many of whom we’ve lost in 2016.

With heartfelt observations of the world around him, Chicago Farmer has been around the folk scene for a while now singing the stories he has written along the way, aiming to capture the essence of the human condition and putting it all on display. He has gotten to know a variety of players over the years and brought together a wonderful cast of musicians to perform on the album. Diekhoff co-produced Midwest Side Stories, with engineer Chris Harden at I.V. Labs Studios in Chicago, Illinois. Harden also played Glockenspiel and harmonized vocals on select tracks. Others on the album include vocalist and guitarist Ernie Hendrickson, drummer Darren Garvey, vocalist Heather Horton, and a handful of other Midwestern mainstays.

Cody has his finger on the pulse of middle America. Coming from a long line of family farmers and factory workers in central Illinois and growing up in a rural farming community has inspired many songs that are autobiographical in nature. Farms & Factories” is a workgrass song featuring fiddle, tempo changes, and the farming side of Chicago Farmer. In 2002 he moved up north to the big city where he came up with the name Chicago Farmer for what was initially intended to be a band, but ended up keeping the name for himself and started writing and recording albums. Eventually he moved back in 2008 to central Illinois where he makes his home in Bloomington. The Midwest is where he was born and raised. It’s where he first started to write poetry and where he would eventually set those words into motion with his guitar.

With Midwest Side Stories Chicago Farmer builds an adventurous narrative that brings issues to the front burner with folk/protest songs. “Two Sides of the Story” is an acoustically portrayed glimpse of the evolving division in the United States. It takes aim at the media, politics, and religion’s role in that division. “There’s two sides to every story, there’s two sides to every town, the side of town that tells the story. The side where the story went down.”

An upbeat electric working class protest song, “Revolving Door,” describes manufacturing job loss in the Midwest with howling vocals, a driving beat, and ripping harmonica. “My home state of Illinois continues to have the highest unemployment rate in the region, and manufacturing jobs continue to disappear.” Cody says, ”Politicians who work the current system to benefit themselves and their constituencies have sold out these industries and workers. While the CEO’s of these companies hand out pink slips to their workforce, they continue to hand themselves bonuses.”

“9pm to 5” examines the plight of the working American and pays tribute to those with unconventional work hours. At other times Chicago Farmer goes tongue-in-cheek with “Skateboard Song” which takes listeners on a ride with this folk story song, questioning our laws and priorities.

Midwest Side Stories is a follow up to 2013’s Backenforth, IL which rose to #33 on the Americana Charts as well as top #10 on several folk charts. Honest Tune wrote of it, “You can smell the dirt in the fields, hear the wind as it blows across the plains, and see the people that Chicago Farmer sings about. Each track captures a moment in time, whether for a person or a particular place. Imagine if a John Steinbeck short story had been written as a song, and this will give you a fairly good idea as to what Chicago Farmer accomplishes on his albums.”

Chicago Farmer is ready to kick down some more doors and put something new in as many ears, hands, living rooms, and car stereos as possible. Midwest Side Stories is available now on pre-order on Kickstarter through September 11th and folks that donate will receive it at their doorstep several weeks before the official release.  “We’ve set our goal at $20… because we love you.” Cody says, “My last album has a song called The Twenty Dollar Bill. It’s easily one of my top 3 requested songs, I especially love that it’s requested by people of all ages. It’s a story song inspired my grandparents and I’ve been told has moved a lot of people. We put a lot of heart, soul, sweat, tears, and even some blood into making this album. While the basics are covered, we still have a large hill to climb and any support that you can offer is greatly appreciated”

Midwest Side Stories captures everything that Chicago Farmer is capable of as a performer, songwriter and story teller. He draws you in with the emotion in his voice and holds you captive with the lyrical pictures he paints about the real struggle the common man is up against.

Chicago Farmer Midwest Side Stories Tour Dates

Full Band Shows
9/29 Thu – Martyrs’ – Chicago, IL
9/30 Fri – Redstone Room – Davenport, IA
10/1 Sat – Castle Theatre – Bloomington, IL
10/2 Sun – The Bootleg – St. Louis, MO

Solo Shows
10/5 Wed – Woodlands Tavern – Columbus, OH
10/6 Thu – Steiner’s Tavern – Chillicothe, OH
10/7 Fri – Southgate House Revival – Newport, KY
10/8 Sat – Radio Radio – Indianapolis, IN
10/13 Thu – Knuckleheads Retro Lounge – Kansas City, MO
10/14 Fri – Blue October – Hannibal, MO
10/15 Sat – Bar None – Springfield, IL
10/20 Thu – The Walnut Room – Denver, CO
10/21 Fri – Lazy Dog Saloon – Boulder, CO
11/3 Thu –  Five Spot – Nashville, TN
11/4 Fri – Paducah Beer Werks Paducah, KY
11/5 Sat – Hangar 9- Carbondale, IL
11/9 Wed – The Cedar Cultural Center – Minneapolis, MN
11/10 Thu – The Root Note – LaCrosse, WI

Further information can be found at www.chicagofarmer.com, www.facebook.com/chicagofarmer, and twitter.com/chicagofarmer.

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The Inaugural Jam In The Trees Takes Place at Pisgah Brewing
Friday & Saturday, August 26-27, 2016in Black Mountain, NC


Schedule Announced! More Info & Tickets: www.pisgahbrewing.com/events/outdoor-events/jam-in-the-trees-august-26th-and-27th/
150 Eastside Drive, Black Mountain, NC 28711 | Phone 828.669.0190

ASHEVILLE, NC — Jam in The Trees is thrilled to announce its daily schedule as well as the additions of Jim Lauderdale and Savannah Smith to this year’s event! They will be joining in on the already stellar lineup which includes The Wood Brothers, The Del McCoury Band, Junior Brown, Willie Watson, The Burrito Brothers, The Secret Sisters, Patrick Sweany, and Leyla McCalla along with a handful of North Carolina artists including Mipso, Chatham County Line, Tellico, Mark Bumgarner, and Unspoken Tradition.

The inaugural Jam In The Trees takes place at Pisgah Brewing Company in Black Mountain, NC on Friday and Saturday, August 26-27, 2016 as a gathering of folks for the purpose of celebrating great music, beer, and community for a good cause! Doors open at 6pm on Friday for shows on the indoor stage. Gates open Saturday at 10am, with music starting at 11am throughout the day until 11pm on the beautiful Pisgah Outdoor Stage, followed by an “After Hours Jam” on the indoor stage.

Jim Lauderdale.jpgJim Lauderdale is a two-time GRAMMY-winning singer and master songwriter. He is both a “songwriter’s songwriter,” who’s written/co-written many modern classics for iconic artists, as well as an intuitive sideman, who’s enhanced the music of a bevy of esteemed musicians. As a solo artist, since 1986, he’s created a body work spanning 28 albums of imaginative roots music, encompassing country, bluegrass, soul, R&B and rock. Along the way he’s won awards, garnered critical acclaim, and earned himself an engaged fan base.

Savannah Smith.jpgSavannah Smith, based out of Asheville, North Carolina, brings her North Mississippi soul to whatever stage she graces.  Armed with an uncanny ability to create powerful melodies and lyrics, Savannah captivates audiences with her fiery delivery of well-crafted original material. She was recently named a finalist at the iconic MerleFest Songwriting Contest. Her strong soulful vocals, paired with the melodic backings of some of Asheville’s top musicians, evoke strong emotional responses, wowing audiences with her fiery tunes that have folks out on the dance floor all night.

Jam in The Trees promises a wide range of award-winning musicians over two days with live performances, exquisite local food offerings, VIP Meet and Greet events with the artists, Brewery Tours, and down-home fun. Limited VIP and weekend ticketing packages are available. A portion of the proceeds of JITT will go to a local not-for-profit, Wild Forests & Fauna (WildFF). The events also supports the the Big Tree Project.

Coming in from out of town? Lodging options include deals with the nearby Super 8, Quality Inn, and Holiday Inn (find out more here). Nearby camping includes Asheville East KOA and Mama Gertie’s Hideaway. JITT will offer shuttle service to these locations.

Jam in The Trees is seeking art, merchandise and food vendors for the weekend. If you are interested, please fill out this form → http://goo.gl/forms/V3Vu6l39Rr

WNCW is the media sponsor and will be emceeing at the event. Further sponsors of Jam in The Trees include Mosaic Realty, Sanesco Labs, Diamond Brand, and Frugal Backpacker. Earthspun Apparel is providing official JITT hats and t-shirts which you can pick up on site. There will also be a raffle for a Root Cause adirondack chair designed by Appalachian Designs!

Jam in The Trees 2016 Lineup:
The Wood Brothers
The Del McCoury Band
Junior Brown
Willie Watson
Jim Lauderdale
The Burrito Brothers
Chatham County Line
The Secret Sisters
Mipso
Patrick Sweany
Leyla McCalla
Unspoken Tradition
Mark Bumgarner
Tellico
Savannah Smith

For more information, please visit www.facebook.com/jaminthetrees and www.pisgahbrewing.com/jam-in-the-trees-coming-to-pisgah-brewing-august-2016/.

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Town Mountain. Photo by Amy Daniels.

Town Mountain on Fire After Recent Grand Ole Opry & Ryman Auditorium Debuts

Further Tour Dates Added on Album Release Tour

ASHEVILLE, NC —Raw and soulful, with plenty of swagger, Town Mountain, is on tour with their 5th studio album, Southern Crescent, which released to much acclaim on April 1, 2016 on LoHi Records. The band debuted on the Grand Ole Opry stage in June. Just two weeks later they made their debut appearance at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, as part of a three day run of shows supporting Greensky Bluegrass. The album debuted at #4 on the Billboard Bluegrass Chart and stayed for ten weeks on the Americana Music Association‘s radio chart’s top 40.

Town Mountain, based in Asheville, NC, continues their album relase tour mid-July with shows in Atlanta, Mississippi, and Arkansas before heading up to the northwest states in early August. They return to the south for a number of shows this summer and fall including opening for Yonder Mountain String Band at the Party in the Holler in New River Gorge, then traveling into Virginia and the Carolinas. The season includes notable appearances at Watermelon Park Fest, World of Bluegrass, and Suwannee Roots Revival.

No Depression’s Amos Perrine names Town Mountain as, “the most exciting bluegrass band to come along in a long time.” This is echoed by Music City Roots’ Craig Havighurst sentiments, “I’d put Town Mountain on my list of Five Bluegrass Bands You Must Know in 2016, because while the genre has forked and morphed in wonderful ways, these guys from Asheville have more Flatt & Scruggs and more Jimmy Martin in their sound than any young band I can think of. And when they do nod to other influences, they tend to be from parallels to the early bluegrass era, like Chuck Berry and Carl Perkins for example.”

Town Mountain includes Robert Greer on vocals and guitar, Jesse Langlais on banjo and vocals, Phil Barker on mandolin and vocals, Jack Devereux on fiddle, and Adam Chaffins on bass. Please note Bobby Britt (fiddle) and Nick DiSebastian (bass) perform on Southern Crescent.

Produced and engineered by GRAMMY winner Dirk Powell, Southern Crescent was recorded in Powell’s studio The Cypress House in south-central Louisiana town of Breaux Bridge. It was mixed by Mixed by Scott Vestal at Digital Underground in Greenbrier, TN. The album was recorded in a decidedly old-school way, live, with minimal fixes and overdubs, with all the musicians in the same room and no noise-reducing baffling between them. Each of Town Mountain’s members contributed songs to Southern Crescent, with Barker, Langlais, and Greer the chief writers in the band.

Raleigh News & Observer calls Southern Crescent hard-charging, grits-and-gravy authentic, the kind of emotions on the strings of Bill Monroe and Flatts and Scruggs pioneered more than 60 years ago… Town Mountain honors the Ancients while bringing a collective and generational identity to their art.”

Town Mountain holds its own against all comers when it comes to producing a powerhouse bluegrass drive grown from deep roots.” Bluegrass Unlimited goes on to write, “Much like Monroe’s original Blue Grass Boys show, the CD opens with a lickety-split fiddle number, ‘St. Augustine,’ then the band shifts gears and rolls into an up-tempo, bouncy ‘Ain’t Gonna Worry’ written and sung by the band’s mandolinist, Phil Barker.”

Town Mountain has been making it rounds at notable festivals this season having already appeared at ROMP and Festival of the Bluegrass in Kentucky, Three Rivers Arts Festival in Pittsburgh, Denver Beer Co.’s Sundrenched Music Festival, Rooster Walk in Virginia, Nelsonville Music Festival in Ohio, among others. Walter Tunis with Lexington Herald Ledger notes, “The ascension of Town Mountain as one of the festival’s [Festival of Bluegrass 2016] premiere acts was demonstrated in a set that emphasized the North Carolina’s quintet’s obvious strengths – specifically, a rugged ensemble charge (showcased at once during the show opening “Tick on a Dog”), ample stylistic dexterity (the honky tonk drive of “Whiskey With Tears”) and individual firepower (Greer’s joyous vocals, Phil Barker’s quick-witted mandolin picking).”

“The past echoes through Town Mountain, clear through to the future,” says Railroad Earth’s Tim Carbone. “To bluegrass fans I’d say the genre is in good hands. But you will dig the rough edges too! They’re a shot of 100 proof bluegrass with a honky-tonk chaser!” Carbone is part of the partnership of the new LoHi Records, of which Southern Crescent is the first album in their catalog. Based in Greensboro, NC, the label also includes Hard Working Americans’ Todd Snider (singer/songwriter and record producer ) and Chad Staehly (keyboardist who is also with Gold Mountain Entertainment in Nashville), as well as entrepreneur and marketing veteran Jim Brooks.

Town Mountain ‘Southern Crescent’ Tour 2016:
7/20 Wed – Terminal West – Atlanta, GA (w/ Sam Lewis)
7/21 Thu – Down On Main Concert Series – Tupelo MS
7/22 Fri – Proud Larry’s – Oxford, MS
7/23 Sat – Homegrown Music Festival – Ozark, AR
8/3 Wed – Applegate Lodge – Jacksonville, OR
8/4 Thu – The Old Stone – Bend, OR
8/5 Fri – Pickathon – Happy Valley, OR
8/6 Sat – Double Mountain Brewery – Hood River, OR
8/7 Sun – Nectar’s – Seattle, WA
8/12 Fri –  The Twisted Pear – Forest City, NC
8/19 Fri – Capital Ale House – Richmond, VA
8/20 Sat – The Barns of Rose Hill – Berryville, VA
8/21 Sun – Sanctuary Brewing Co – Hendersonville, NC
8/25 Thu –  Gottrocks – Greenville, SC
8/27  Sat – The Pour House – Charleston, SC
8/26 Fri – Ziggy’s by the Sea – Wilmington, NC
9/3 Sat – Party in the Holler @ ACE Adventure Resort – New River Gorge (supporting Yonder Mountain String Band)
9/9 Fri – Blue Bear Music Fest – Boone, NC
9/10 Sat – Beericana – Holly Springs, NC
9/22 Thu – Botanic Garden – Kernersville, NC
9/24 Sat – Watermelon Park Fest – Berryville, VA
9/30 Fri – World of Bluegrass – IBMA – Raleigh, NC
10/13-14 Thu-Fri -Suwannee Roots Revival – Live Oak, FL

Watch Town Mountain on WOUB’s Gladden House Sessions from the Nelsonville Music Festival http://woub.org/2016/06/24/2016-gladden-house-sessions-town-mountain/

Watch Town Mountain perform “Comin’ Back to You” on The Bluegrass Situation’s Sitch Sessions https://youtu.be/Ut4w6uJbAlo

For more information, please visit TownMountain.net, facebook.com/TownMountain, twitter.com/TownMountain, and instagram.com/townmountainbluegrass.

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LIVE OAK, FL — Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park is excited to announce the Suwannee Roots Revival taking place October 13­-16, 2016 at the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park (SOSMP) in Live Oak, FL. The stellar lineup includes Leftover Salmon, Sam Bush, The Wood Brothers, Donna The Buffalo, Peter Rowan Band, Blueground Undergrass, Jim Lauderdale, Verlon Thompson, The HillBenders “Tommy: A Bluegrass Opry”, Town Mountain, Col. Bruce Hampton, The Mike + Ruthy Band, Jon Stickley Trio and more.

A limited number of Early Bird Tickets are on sale now for $135 for a 4-­day Weekend Pass (all taxes, fees and primitive camping included) through midnight on July 6th when they rise to the next ticketing tier. Kids under 12 are invited to join for free. See all rates and tiers and get tickets at www.suwanneerootsrevival.com/tickets.

The festival promises to be a family friendly event, and includes camping, disc golf, campground pickin’ sessions hosted by Sloppy Joe and Quartermoon, workshops and more! In addition, long­time friends of the park Randy Judy and Beth Judy will emcee the new festival.

Set in the midst of 800 acres of Spanish moss-draped oak and cypress trees along the Suwannee River, the venue is a playground for endless activities such as swimming, canoeing, kayaking, disc golf and biking.The Spirit of Suwannee Music Park offers a unique experience like no other, a true playground for all that attend. The Park also offers guest comforts including a general store, full service restaurant, free showers, indoor bathrooms and water stations. Upgraded Camping, including RV hook ups and cabin rentals, is currently on sale and reservations may be made by calling the Park office at (386) 364­-1683. Attendees can also reserve golf cart rentals by calling the park.

SOSMP is located between Jacksonville, Florida & Tallahassee, Florida about 30 minutes south of the Georgia State line, about 45 minutes north of Gainesville and is host to a variety of events. Please visit the park’s web site at www.musicliveshere.com for further information.

Suwannee Roots Revival 2016 Lineup
Leftover Salmon
Sam Bush
The Wood Brothers
Donna The Buffalo
Peter Rowan Band
Blueground Undergrass
Jim Lauderdale
Verlon Thompson
The HillBenders “Tommy: A Bluegrass Opry”
Town Mountain
Col. Bruce Hampton
The Mike + Ruthy Band
Jon Stickley Trio
Sauce Boss
Dread Clampitt
Nikki Talley
Grass Is Dead
Ralph Roddenbery & Donna Hopkins
Grandpa’s Cough Medicine
Walter Parks & Lee Hunter
SYZYGY
The Applebutter Express
Quartermoon
Sloppy Joe
The New 76ers
Belle & the Band
Acoustic Messengers
Big Cosmo
Habanero Honeys

Further information at www.SuwanneeRootsRevival.com. Also visit us on at www.facebook.com/suwanneeroots, Twitter & Instagram: @SuwanneeRoots (#SuwanneeRoots)

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