Friday, April 20, 2007

Ain't No Train revisited, YouTube and more bands!

Over at my Trademark Of Quality audioblog, I posted a review of Pete Berwick's incredible Ain't No Train Outta Nashville CD last weekend. Give it a read if you get a chance and listen to mp3 files from the disc. Then go to Pete's website and order yourself a copy of the CD. You'll be glad that you did!

I've used Allen Sullivant as a source for my YouTube postings on this blog before; now I've copped his stuff for an article on the Associated Content web site that I wrote called "YouTubing Nashville Rock: Allen Sullivant's Top Ten" (link). I have to say up front that the video choices in the article are entirely my own and do not reflect on Allen at all, save for the fact that I got them all from his Practical Stylists page on YouTube. I meant them to be my top ten videos from Allen's page, but something got taken out of context in the editing. Check out the article, though, if only to watch the hilarious four-part television report on "Nashville New Wave" that Allen dug up.

If you haven't check out Allen's website -- the Nashville '80s Rock Archive -- then get thee hence immediately!! Allen's done a great job of collecting music from a bunch of Nashville bands in mp3 format (not just his brother's band, the Practical Stylists), as well as scans of show posters and a bunch of local music zines, including many copies of the Nashville Intelligence Report, all in PDF format.

Which gets us around to another amending of the "official" band list. I started work on the Nashville rock discography a little less than two weeks ago and found a bunch of new bands, mostly from compilation CDs that I entered into the discography listing. I've entered over 100 cassettes and CDs into the discography over the last ten days or so, with another three shelves (300+ CDs) waiting to be entered. Then I'll move over to the vinyl and get it listed. I hope to have the bulk of the discography done (except for last-minute additions) by the end of May.

Anyway, in the course of my research, I found a lot of bands that I remembered as playing around town and recording and being part of the local scene in general, so I've listed them below. Some, like CASUAL WATER or JUSTIN HEAT were easy since I've found articles and such to go along with songs on the comp CDs. The emails keep on pouring in, as well, with PLACID FURY leading the nominations by readers suggesting bands for the list, followed closely by VERDANT GREEN and THE BLUE MILLION, two bands that David Meade played with. Some, like THE BARKING SPIDERS never recorded (as far as I know) but are notable for their members being in other, better-known.

Two bands that I decided to add to the list may draw protests from some of you that follow this blog, and the project's progress -- STEELER and HUMAN RADIO. I had received a few emails from people recommending that Steeler be added to the list, and since I knew them to be a L.A. band, I hadn't taken them real seriously until this week. Doing a little research, however, I discovered that previous to Steeler, frontman Ron Keel had been the singer for LUST, a Nashville hard rock band that was pretty well-known in their day.

According to his bio, Keel actually formed Steeler with local scene veterans in Nashville, and the band played around town for a while before leaving for the bright lights of Hollywood. Although the Nashville line-up was gone by the time that Steeler recorded its one album, those guys did record some demos and released several singles that have recently been gathered on a compilation CD, so I'm going to include them on the list.

As for HUMAN RADIO, I'm adding both the band and ROSS RICE to the list. Human Radio was actually from Memphis, but the band moved lock, stock and barrel to the Music City after the release of its lone major label CD. They played around town frequently, so I'm going to put them in on an "honorary" basis. Rice stuck around town after the band broke up and members moved back to Memphis, recording one album for Jack Emerson and Steve Earle's E Squared Records. Ross played around town a heck of a lot as I remember, before he too got tired of Nashville and headed back west.

Contrary to popular belief, the Rock City Angels were not a Nashville band (even though they are credited as such in several places). This band was originally from Florida and moved to LA, where they signed with Geffen. The label subsequently stuck them in Memphis for almost two years to record their debut album, during which time the RC Angels hung around Nashville a good bit looking for a guitar player. They also played Nashville quite frequently, as I recall, and I remember seeing them with Detroit's Jugglers & Thieves (Hi Jill!) at a downtown club in 1988 or '89. Regardless of their local presence, the Rock City Angels DO NOT get on the list. Amazing what a little research can do, eh?

Got information on any of these bands, or any of the bands on the list, or were you in a band that I should know about? Email me at rev.gordon(at) and I promise to get back to you sooner or (probably) later.


BTW, the "official list" is now 451 bands strong with these additions. Can we hit 500 names of legitimate bands? It doesn't look so questionable now....

Labels: , , ,


Blogger Trevers said...

Spike & Mallets formed in Murfreesboro around 1999 with Jeff Keeran (former front of Celebrity Toast & Jam), Seth Timbs, Trev Wooten and Sam Baker (all members of Fluid Ounces at one time or another).

Sam Baker moved along to Lambchop among other things and we added Tony Keats (guitar) and Kyle Walsh (drums), both from Janie Grey in 2001.

Brent Rawlings replaced Trev on bass around 2002 and the band was reduced to a 4-piece with Keeran,Keats,Rawlings and Walsh. I returned to the band on bass in 2005 as well as Seth on keys.

The current line-up is Jeff Keeran (vocals, keyboards), Trev Wooten (bass,vocals), Seth Timbs (keys,guitar,vocals), Tony Keats (guitar, vocals), Kyle Walsh (drums) and Chuck Pfaff (keys,trumpet, vocals).

Recorded one album in 2000 ("Peep Jr.").

All the material centers around the songwriting of Jeff Keeran.

Currently working on new material and playing shows around Nashville.

Let me know if you need more info!

5:53 PM  
Blogger Dan Feather said...

Hey Rev! . . . How's it chillin' in NY? Music City misses ya! . .

Anyway, every now and then I find myself wishing CT&J would come back to life, so I search the internet. This time, I got hits leading me to Spike & Mallets, the post on your site, and a myspace page with a few songs. How great to hear Jeff's voice! . . . The band's name intrigues me, since the awesome guitar player in CT&J was named Spike. Is he in this new band?

In any case, are S&M gigging anywhere?



11:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Spike and Mallets is no more. Jeff is working on songs for a new project to be named "the aposholes". Spiritual music for athiests. Look for it in 2008.

1:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The guitar player in CT&J was Spot not Spike.

2:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff Keeran is an amazing songwriter.

9:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree! Jeff is a great songwriter, not to mention singer and musician... I was disappointed to discover that I couldn't even find any old recordings of Spike and Mallets on YouTube - if anyone could post one, please do!!

9:29 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home