Tag Archives: tUnE-YaRdS

Thao & The Get Down Stay Down

Thao Get Down Stay Down

Y’all seen the Kazoo Kid meme? I started seeing gifs and snippets from “You on Kazoo” a couple months ago and decided unequivocally that the Kazoo Kid was awesome. My favorite was (and still is) the “Who are you?” line, which people have used as a reaction to shitty Internet comments. I love it.

A few days after I started seeing all this, I learned via Twitter that the Kazoo Kid is [insert drum roll] my buddy Brett — one of my favorite people in the entire world and a former bandmate (the same group that included Bandmate 4eva Doug). “You on Kazoo” was one of his first acting jobs, and he’s had many since — he’s an extremely talented dude. Incredible voice.

That double verification experience — saying “I like this kid” and then “No, wait — I actually know and like this kid” — it was wild. Like truth itself was confirmed. It was also a little like “Escape (The Piña Colada Song),” but the plot of that song makes my skin crawl, so let’s pretend I didn’t mention it.

Why am I bringing this up now? Because the same thing happened with Thao’s new album: I heard it and loved it when NPR did a first First Listen, and then weeks later learned via Instagram that one of my absolute favorite Richmond musicians — the amazingly talented Charlie Glenn of the Trillions and Avers — has guitar and keyboard credits all over A Man Alive. Made me so happy. Double verified: A Man Alive kicks ass. Need triple verification? Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs produced it, and that influence — the focus on rhythm and general sense of mischief — is strongly felt throughout. So damn good.

Check out early favorite “Nobody Dies” below.

Thao & The Get Down Stay Down — “Nobody Dies” [Spotify/iTunes]

1 Comment

Filed under #nowplaying, #rva

Record Store Report: New Orleans

New Orleans

Another new feature for 2016: Going to do a better job of reporting back about the out-of-town record stores I check out. Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Davy, this is just an excuse to work record shopping into the trips you and Mrs. YHT take.”

I have only one response to that accusation.

Let’s start in the Big Easy, where Mrs. YHT and I spent three nights two weeks ago. Taking a trip right before Christmas, one of the most stressful times of the year, may seem a little crazy, and it felt a little crazy when we were making final preparations, but it was awesome. Relaxing, even. We went to a Saints game, ate beignets every morning, walked around the French Quarter a bunch — hand-in-hand, booze-in-hand — and we even got to stop in a few record stores.

We hit three, and while one was atrocious (going to let that one go unnamed), two were excellent. They were:

Euclid Records (3301 Chartres St.)

Euclid 3

What a selection. A ton of new vinyl, lots of used to flip through, a generous New Orleans section for tourists like me, and an upstairs jazz collection that I barely even scratched the surface of. I could have spend half a day there. We were there for a solid hour before Mrs. YHT — very reasonably, it should be said — shot off the “Hey, we’ve been here a while…” flare.

Euclid 2

The person at the counter was extremely friendly when chatting with other customers (OK, so I have a habit of eavesdropping while flipping through records), and he was nice enough to give me a media mailer to keep my two acquisitions safe on the flight home. Those acquisitions:

tUnE-yArDs — Nikki Nack (used, $8)


I passed on getting this when tUnE-yArDs came to the National earlier this year, though I did pick up a few other items. One was this “Water Fountain” 45. I love “Water Fountain” (I’ve embedded the Song Exploder episode about it below), and the 45’s B-side is a Nikki Nack supercut, which started out as fun but gradually made me regret not getting the actual album. Very glad to have gotten a second chance at it. While Discogs says the $8 price point is normal for this pressing — translucent red vinyl! — it still felt like a steal.

Song Exploder 38: tUnE-yArDs

Soul Jazz Records — New Orleans Funk, Volume 1 (new, $32)

New Orleans Funk

Had a minor panic attack trying to decide which volume in this series to get, because they all looked excellent. This is the side of funk I enjoy most — the earliest takes on the genre that linger closer to blues and soul. It wasn’t cheap, but the three discs pack in a ton of great stuff. The day after we got back to Richmond, I had this on from about 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. straight, just cycling through the sides and feeling funky as hell. Looking forward to checking out volumes 2 and 3 (3 is actually on Spotify).

The Meters — “Hand Clapping Song” [Spotify/iTunes]

Skully’z Recordz (907 Bourbon St.)

Skullyz 2

Just a block or two away from our hotel in the French Quarter. So often, stores that are close to the main tourist drag are crap, but I loved Skully’z. It’s tiny — you’d probably measure its footprint in square inchage instead of footage — and that’s definitely part of its charm.

Skullyz 1

You have to work together with the other patrons to make the best of the space, and I got this neat, “We’re all on the same team” vibe while I was in there. Way more fun than the “I’m terrified and we need to walk away very quickly” vibe I got when we stopped in front of the LaLaurie House on the way back to our hotel.

Snagged two things:

Professor Longhair —Hadacol Bounce (new, $23)

Professor Longhair

This was part of the store’s New Orleans section, and I was immediately drawn to the cover art. How badass does Professor Longhair look there? I mean c’mon. Baby YHT actually demands to stare at this record, because she loves the photo so much. It’s a German pressing, and as far as I can tell, it’s still not on Discogs, though I do see an Icelandic pressing. The person behind the counter (also very friendly — almost everyone we met in New Orleans was) said it had just come out the week before.

Not sure if this is the exact right version, but here’s “East St Louis Baby,” which is a dead ringer for Longhair classic “Go To The Mardis Gras.”

Professor Longhair — “East St Louis Baby” [YouTube]

The Shouting Matches — Grownass Man (new, $17)

The Shouting Matches

Found this in the very last bin I was going to look through. I love this album, and I’d been keeping an eye out for it — with no luck — since it came out in 2013. Which is funny, because the person I talked to (Skully himself?) said they’d done really well with it and sold a bunch when it first came out. Seems strangely appropriate that I found it in New Orleans. There’s a bluesy looseness to Grownass Man that reminds me of the atmosphere there. Maybe I’m manufacturing a connection. Either way, it was on my Phil Cook appreciation bucket list, and it may have been the find of the trip. That or Le Big Mac at Cochon Butcher. Holy crap, y’all. Life changing.

The Shouting Matches — “Avery Hill” [Spotify/iTunes]

Leave a comment

Filed under #features



Did y’all know that world’s biggest ukulele brand is headquartered in Richmond? Isn’t that wild?

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under #interviews


Can’t let the week come to and end without saying a few words about Avers’ fantastic set at the tUnE-yArDs show on Monday.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under #live, #rva

Son Lux

Son Lux

Got to see Son Lux open for tUnE-yArDs on Monday night. I’d consider it a new speed record for a band going from unfamiliar to beloved.

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under #live

Kishi Bashi

The word “transcendent” gets bandied about like nobody’s business, but I’d like to apply it in a very specific way to Kishi Bashi’s performance at June 14’s Friday Cheers.

Continue reading


Filed under #live

Delicate Steve

Positive Force

I love me some good marketing. I loved the promotion for Delicate Steve’s last album (which involved a hilariously fictional press release from the desk of Chuck Klosterman), and I love the way Steve Marion introduced the world to the songs that make up his upcoming release, Positive Force. On June 26, he had a committee of 11 musician friends (musiciends?) tweet links to individual tracks from the new album that had been uploaded to YouTube. Through this “Positive Force Friendship Stream,” each song got its own “premiere,” with YHT-beloved groups like Yeasayer, Ra Ra Riot, Yellow OstrichtUnE-yArDs, and Akron/Family joining in on the fun.

Continue reading


Filed under #nowplaying