Friday, May 25, 2007

Reunions Abound 'Round Nashville

Yeah, it's been another month and I've been AWOL from this blog during that time. Lot's of stuff going on in my parallel blogs, though...launched the TMQ Zine Archive last month with cover scans and info on House O' Pain, Nashville's beloved punkzine, published by Donnie and April Kendall and Troy Pigue back in the early-90s.

Over at my music biz blog, Ryan Adams Sucks, I launched a feud with music biz gadfly and best-selling author Moses Avalon while on the Trademark Of Quality audioblog, I reviewed the Rick Johnson Reader, a collection of album reviews and other writings from esteemed rock critic (and my first editor and mentor), "Ranger Reek" Johnson. Oh yeah, I've also reviewed a heck of a lot of recent prog-rock and heavy metal discs over at TMQ during the past month....

Whew! Wotta month...enough self-promotion, though, let's get on to the meat and potatoes, shall we? Although I'm 800 miles away, I've noticed that reunion shows are beginning to crop up all over the Music City. This week's Nashville Scene has a good article by Jim Ridley on the recent reunion show by blues-rockers the Dusters, old friends of the Reverend's and one of the best live bands that you'll ever see. I'm sorry that I wasn't in Nashville for this show; aside from my personal drinking history with Kenny Mac and David B. (anybody remember the food-fight launched by the three of us and John Elliott of Dessau at the first Metro Magazine Awards Show at Nashville Center Stage?), my first date with my wife was at a Dusters show at the Exit/In in '89.

To celebrate the Dusters' reunion, I've included a scan of a Miller Genuine Draft Band Network postcard that was used by the band to promote upcoming shows. I remember that the Dusters were pretty happy to be hooked up with Miller at the time, and from the journalistic end, I remember that Miller did a lot more to promote their "band network" artists than many of the band's own labels did. Also, since it's time to post a few more mp3 files of Nashville bands, let's throw in a couple for you Dusters' fans. "This Ain't No Jukebox...We're A Rock 'N' Roll Band" was one of the band's signature songs, taken from the Reptile Records CD of the same name. "Red Hot & Ready To Roll" was another live crowd favorite, taken here from the hard-to-find French CD Unlisted Number, released by Dixie Frog Records, the label that also released Ken McMahan's three (excellent) solo albums.

Of course, the big buzz 'round town right now is the Jason & the Scorchers reunion show on June 2nd, which is a benefit for the band's drummer Perry Bags. If you don't know the whole story behind that show, you can check out my article at the Associated Content site, which spills all the details. The show has been sold out for weeks but there are still a few tickets floating around if you know where to look. In honor of the Scorchers' reunion, I dug out an authentic Scorchers' Christmas card from 1985 or '86 and I've included scans of the front and inside of the card to share with all of you Scorchers' fans (pics beneath the mp3 file links below).

As far as Scorchers' mp3 files, I dug deep in the vault and found rare live performances of "Last Time Around" and "Broken Whiskey Glass," both taken from the bootleg CD Absolutely Mannheim. Capturing an October 1985 show in Mannheim, Germany the sound quality on the disc is mediocre, the master probably originating from an audience recording, so you'll just have to turn up the sound on your computer and pretend that you're lost in the crowd...which many of you will be next Saturday. In the meantime, enjoy the songs!

The night before the Scorchers show, Warner Hodges and friends will be holding their own benefit show for Perry at the Exit/In, including the Bottle Rockets and Tommy Womack. I've sung the praises of Mr. Womack before, and will continue to do so as long as he keeps recording albums as brilliant as his recent There, I Said It! [review]. Tommy is an old friend of both the Dusters and the Scorchers, so it's only fitting that I include a couple of Womack songs here as well. "Whatever Happened To Cheetah Chrome?" is a whip-smart song taken from Tommy's first album, Positively Na Na [review] while "Alpha Male & The Canine Mystery Blood" comes from There, I Said It!

As for THE OTHER SIDE OF NASHVILLE book project, things are going well, if slowly. No new bands to add to the "official list" at this time, and the discography is taking me longer than I thought it would to compile, but it's all good. I've scored some great interviews for the book with musicians like Donna Frost, Kenny Wright (Bonepony), Jeff Cease (Rumble Circus) and Scott Feinstein and Barry Nelson (Shadow 15). All those folks, as well as Robert Jetton, Chip Chilton, Mark Shenkel and probably a couple of people that I've forgotten have all contributed photos and memorabilia and/or have written materials to be included in the book.

My original plans, almost a year ago, were to have the book done and on the street in June; with the December move and subsequent second move last March, that's obviously not going to happen. I'll be dedicating more resources to the project come the end of the month, though, so I'm going to shoot for late-September publication. I've moved the deadline back to the end of June for anybody that would like to loan materials to the project (photos, memorabilia, etc) or send recordings for research or review, so if you want to get involved, an email link is to your right. As for everybody else, stay tuned....

The Dusters "This Ain't No Jukebox...We're A Rock 'N' Roll Band"

The Dusters "Red Hot & Ready To Roll"

Jason & The Scorchers "Last Time Around"

Jason & The Scorchers "Broken Whiskey Glass"

Tommy Womack "Whatever Happened To Cheetah Chrome?"

Tommy Womack "Alpha Male & The Canine Mystery Blood"

Right click on any of the song titles and choose "save as" to download the mp3 files.

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