Friday News and Notes

A few Friday news and notes items, starting with the video above…

  • Holy crap — have y’all heard this Angelica Garcia songMatthew E. White tweeted about her yesterday, and Ted, the bass player for my band, saw her at The Tin Pan last night and raved about it. Can’t wait to hear more. (BTW s/o to a fellow son [daughter in her case] of a preacher [Episcopalian priest in both our cases] man [woman in my case].)
  • Mrs. YHT and I finished Stranger Things last night. No, YOU were a sobbing mess. Did you hear that the band that contributed the original score — they’re called, appropriately, Survive — is going on tour?
  • Speaking of soundtracks hitting the road, Seu Jorge is doing a David Bowie tribute tour, reprising his role in The Life Aquatic. He’s coming to D.C., but it’s on a Tuesday, and that Tuesday happens to be election day. Not sure I’m brave enough to go to that city on that day, but hot damn do I want to see that show. And hot damn to I want to get my hands on a copy of this.
  • So Delicate Steve played on Paul Simon’s last album. Which I love. I had no idea. I found this out because a press release celebrating his signing to ANTI- mentioned it. (Here’s the new tune of his they linked to in that email.)
  • David Vandervelde — one of two people named David who played music at my sister’s wedding — is putting out a collaborative EP with Tess Shapiro. It’s streaming over at Brooklyn Vegan, and I’d recommend listening all the way through. The whole thing is good, but I’m really digging the last two tracks.
  • The only thing better than friends who make mixtapes are friends who make mixtapes and also link you to other excellent mixtapes. Thank you for sending a link to this wonderful Aquarium Drunkard mix, Giselle!
  • I’m turning 33 tomorrow, and I’ll be celebrating the first few hours of my birthday by joining Doug Nunnally on Sound Gaze. Not sure when I’ll be jumping in, but the show runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on WDCE. Listen online, listen on the radio, peer into the windows of the station… whatever it takes.
  • Gigging tonight at bdubs, so no show recommendations. As for bdubs recommendations: spicy garlic. Now and forever, spicy garlic.

David Vandervelde

Summertime Hits

“To every thing there is a season.” — The Byrds Pete Seeger Ecclesiastes III

For whatever reason, when I get ready to write a blog post for Friday publication, everything feels different. My appetite for meaningful analysis goes out the window, and I start asking myself things like “What was the funnest thing I heard all week?” and “Is ‘funnest’ a word?” and “Can I find a way to incorporate this picture of a giraffe helping his drunk friend Frank get home?”

In many ways, the same thing goes on throughout the summer months, albeit on a much bigger scale.

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Bobby Bare Jr.

A Storm, A Tree, My Mother's Head

Sometimes finding out about a band late is torturous. Like when the group just broke up or is on a clear creative decline. Or, worse yet, when one or more of the founding members have died and the band is touring around the country like a zombie version of themselves. In all these cases, you can still listen to tunes from the glory days, but you have to accept that you’ve missed out on something that simply can’t be recovered. Other times, though, being the last to know isn’t so bad. Under the right circumstances, discovering an artist after everyone else can feel great, like you’re walking into a party that’s already in full swing. That’s just how I’d characterize my first two weeks of listening to Bobby Bare Jr.

When I first heard about Bare, I was a few days away from heading to his hometown of Nashville, TN for a friend’s wedding. Not to get too touchy-feely here, but c’mon; what’re the odds of me hearing about him right before my first trip to the center of the country music universe? (Bare’s father is country veteran, having charted albums for decades and written, according to Wikipedia, the world’s one and only Christian football waltz — “Dropkick Me Jesus (Though The Goalposts Of Life).”) Did I mention that I heard about him from a friend who, at the time, didn’t know I was going to Nashville? As far as happy coincidences go, this was a pretty crazy one.

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David Vandervelde

Daytrotter Session

Yesterday I wrote about Daytrotter Sessions, one of my favorite resources for new music, and I linked to Jason Isbell’s outstanding episode. There’s another Daytrotter artist who is near and dear to my heart, thanks in large part to my sister’s wedding. She got hitched in the summer of 2008 at Architectural Artifacts, an eclectic antique salvage shop that fills a spacious former factory building in Chicago. My sister did much of the planning herself, and I’m not sure how she managed to book him, but David Vandervelde performed. He was awesome, and I haven’t stopped listening since. He’s recorded two Daytrotter Sessions, one on Christmas Eve of 2006 and the other in February of 2009. They’re both fantastic in totally different ways. The first is a full-band celebration, electrified and unleashed, and the second is more intimate, with Vandervelde playing acoustic guitar, accompanied only by bass and a backing percussion track. In both cases, his voice shines above all else, gracefully rising and balancing, as if weightless. Check out “Jacket” from The Moonstation House Band album below, and click here and here for his Daytrotter Sessions.