Mar./Apr. 2013 Edition 9

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Table of Contents • Whistle Pigs Benefit Show | 3 - 5 • WDBX Membership Drive | 6 • Sun Stereo Interview | 7 • Nicki Bluhm Interview | 9 - 11 • Caravan of Thieves | 12 - 14 • Matt Butler Interview | 15 - 16 • Morel Mushroom Hunting | 18 • Karen Binder Interview | 19 - 20 • Yeah Yeah Yeahs Album Review | 22

Edited & Written by: Matthew McGuire & Sean Hersch

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Whistle Pigs Benefit Show The Whistle Pigs and Company Raise Funds for the Henhouse Prowelers at Tres Hombres 04/07/13

Written by Matthew McGuire

Members of the Whistle Pigs sat down with us, and talked about

the reasons why they were able to hold a benefit show for the Henhouse Prowlers. Stream the interview with Soundcloud, and browse through the photos in the gallery. Check out the Whistle Pigs live at the Hangar 9 on 04/19/13. This show also featured guests from the Rural Kings and The Voyageurs. Music was performed throughout the evening by musicians who wanted to help a good cause. The outpour from the local community was a sign that people can still make a difference. The Whistle Pigs will be going on a “Spring� tour covering spots all over the country. Make sure to see this band live when they stop into your town. Listen in to the post interview with The Whistle Pigs by linking up with the link below. Web link at:


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WDBX.ORG - Streaming Online Call the Station at 618-457-3691

WDBX 91.1 fm Community Radio for Southern Illinois has been supporting independent radio listeners for over 15 years. Every fall and spring they have a membership drive to help pay for operating costs of the radio station. WDBX works as a non-for-profit

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company with volunteers making up a majority of the staff. This photo was taken on Wednesday, April 17 during the Grateful Dead show from 10-12 PM CST. There is a variety of shows on WDBX radio with an entire cast of cultures and personalities to provide

a well-balanced program schedule. Both of the editors of the Crescent Vale Network have shows on WDBX, and help the station work to completing their goals. There has been studies done recently showing the emotional and physical benefits that listening to music can provide humans. In a world of cures to find what ails us, there is a common thread or universal medicine that streams twenty four hours a day at: Please become an active listener and donate today. Thank you.

Sun Stereo Interview with Kelly McMorris

Written by Matthew McGuire Kelly McMorris (music,

lyrics, vocals, keys) has been writing music, performing in a plethora of projects, and all the while canvassing the gutters and bowels of churches, saloons, and opera houses for the perfect concoction of thugs and miscreants to transpire his musical vision. Q. How does it feel being one of the up-and-coming bands in the Midwest? A. It is like every day is my birthday. Q. What country would you like to visit in regards to inspiration from different musical heritages?

A. Ohio Q. Do you have any guilty pleasures? A. Every single one. Q. What kind of venue do you enjoy performing the most? A. I love playing outdoors. I also love playing house parties…the intimacy of having people in your face, no authority, and the possibility of drunk kids crashing into/ spilling beer/ruining your gear at any time keeps it fresh. Q. Is there a date set for the 2nd album release? A. There’s no hard date set. We’re currently wrapping up the loose ends now, so it should be done this summer.

Interview with Kelly McMorris from Sun Stereo

Q. Which musician would you like to work with the most that is scheduled to perform at the Summer Camp Music Festival? A. Medeski Martin & Wood….or Lettuce Q. What kind of keyboard are you currently using? Do you see yourself changing your equipment anytime soon? A. I’m using a Yamaha s90 es. I love it. I don’t see myself changing any time soon….but, you never know. Q. What is your favorite outdoor activity to enjoy during spring and summer. A. Jogging at a local prairie preserve…or watching TV. Q. Do you have any special points or announcements you would like to make? A. We are currently developing a Sun Stereo Theme Park. Completion is scheduled for the Spring of 2016.

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MM: I remember hearing Adams mention that he sat in on bass with your group. Does the band currently have a fixed lineup right now, or is it more of an open door policy?

Photo Provided

Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers 2013 Summer Tour Interview with Nicki B. Written by Matthew McGuire Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers hails from San Francisco, and carries a contagious style that engulfs listeners right away. The band will be out this summer on an extensive tour. We caught up with Nicki at the end of April to go over music, the Hangout Music Festival, future plans and surviving the outback. Steve Adams, bassist for the group and I had spoke about the band last May. During an interview with Adams, I asked him which new band excites

him the most. He responded with NB&Gs. Adams is one of the most talented bassist our of generation, and has a great ear for music. In connection of the Crescent Vale Network’s preview coverage of the Hangout event coming up this May 16-19 in Gulf Shores, Alabama; we are providing interviews with acts performing at the event. Nicki and I spoke about the band’s evolution, as well as many other great points on fashion, culture and music.

NB: He is in the band full time now. You know it hasn’t always been fixed. We do have some schedules we work around, but it is pretty consistent. MM: How is it working with Steve Adams? NB: Steve is maybe one of my favorite human beings in the world. He is kind, thoughtful, an incredible musician, he has a great energy to him, has a great background in music theory, and I think he teaches the band a lot. MM: What is one of your favorite moments from summer touring of last year?

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NB: You know it’s funny how stuff sticks in your mind. Instantly the first thing that popped in my head was traveling into Pocatello, Idaho. We had a funny moment when the band decided to go down the river. It’s like a rafting area, but not like sporting, more leisurely rafting. People brings rafts, and there is all of these pale Americans using their floatees to move down the river. The boys decided to go down the river with no rafts, and all of them were so banged up and bruised. We got to the club that night, and we decided that we were just going to have fun. It ended up being a really positive moment. I don’t think any of us changed out of our bathing suits. MM: Do you plan on rocking a swimsuit at the Hangout Music Festival? NB: I don’t know, maybe. Should I?

enough. The Gramblers are performing at the Hangout this year. Is there any acts on the bill that inspire you?

eryday, no matter where I go. Even when it is raining. It is rare when I am not wearing it.

NB: Tom Petty is amazing. Tim and I did a Sweet Relief benefit show in San Francisco with all Tom Petty songs. They invited a bunch of different musicians, and everyone covers a Tom Petty song. Lucinda Williams, Boz Scaggs, Aimee Mann were all there. We were supposed to do ‘Don’t Drag My Heart Around’ but then drummer from another band was out. So, I really got to know the catalog of Tom Petty songs at that point. I started listening and learning about his story. He kind of speaks to everybody. He has a super direct way of tapping into the working man, teenage girls, just kind of everybody. I’m impressed by his tunes and his impact.

MM: I was reading your blog and finding out about your experiences in nature. One of the first things that popped in my mind was you fighting a bear, and I know that may, or may not have ever happened. I am wondering if you have ever had to overcome the obstacles in nature?

MM: Do you wear sunscreen when performing on stage?

MM: I like fashion styles. You could have a backup in NB: I wear sunscreen evcase the weather is warm

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NB: Weather is defiantly the number one thing that can get you. An unexpected storm, not having enough water or really blazing heat. One of the cool things about being in the backcountry is dealing with the elements, and real life situations. It changes.

Its not about social networking, cell phones or getting a tweet out. It is more about finding the basics: food, shelter and safety. Tim, my husband and bandmate, we do a lot of that together. That is one of the first things we did together. He was always really into backpacking and backcountry skiing. When we first started hanging out, I got into too. We were backcountry skiing, and snow camping in Eastern Sierra during the spring. We had kind of a gnarly storm over there that had not been on the radar. We got out of there in time, but the path that we came in on a questionable avalanche area. It was safe, but stressful. MM: Is there any plans or events you have coming up on the horizon? NB: We did put out two new singles, ‘Little Too Late’ and ‘Ravenous’.

Photo Provided

They are previews to our new album. They are available on iTunes and they are on our main website. Thank you once again for taking the time for the interview. See you on the Gulf Coast soon. Check out Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers live at the Hangout Music Festival. They will be grac-

ing the Chevrolet Stage Saturday, May 18 from 12:30-1:30 PM. The band will be out on a massive summer tour, so make sure to catch them live in concert.

Nicki Bluhm and the Gramblers web link at:

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Caravan of Thieves

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Live at Webster University 4-12

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Matt Butler is the conductor for the Everyone Orchestra. He is currently stationed out of Portland, Oregon. This year has been another busy year for Butler. We caught up with him before a set of shows in the Northeast. After talking with Butler it is clear that he is passionate about music, giving back to communities all around the world, and creating unforgettable moments that can take listeners to new levels in a live setting. MM. Can you describe how you are going to create the lineup for this weekend, (April 19-21)? Would you like to talk about how you are going to put together the lineup for this weekend, and how it may be different from other situations? MB. I would say there is two real distinct ways that we do this, when creating an Everyone Orchestra show. One is the festivals, where primarily I am asked to create a lineup

Photo Provided

Written by Matthew McGuire

Interview with Matt Butler, conductor for the Everyone Orchestra built out of individuals that are already there with their bands. Maybe I will bring in a couple special guests or something, but the primary gist of it is that the Everyone Orchestra is a great mutual meeting point for musicians, and this and that for others too. You can bring in a couple special guests to add to the excitement of the overall who is going to be at the event, and who is going to be in the mix with the improv. What we are doing this weekend is

basically putting together a collective group of Everyone Orchestra past participants to do a series of shows. The really cool thing about these shows is the musicians get time with two full sets to stretch out, and really get into the improv. The music gets into a little bit of a deeper space, and the musicians get a little bit of a deeper connection with each other as the tour goes on.

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The primary goal of what I do in bringing these people together is to put them on stage, and to create this truly spontaneous, reactionary musical creative environment. It’s not really premeditative, much at all. The musicians really have to be awake, be aware, and stay connected and ready to move in any direction that the band goes in. The intent behind this musical gathering is co-creation. As a group on stage, we are aiming to co-create some incredible music that is not just chaos, or avant-garde jazz. It can be anything, but what we all want is to make the people apart of it. So, when I turn around and get the audience to sing something, say we created a simple lyric like ‘We’re One’ or just ‘Water’. The audience is singing, and I will turn the band down just a bit. All of a sudden we are a cohesive organism performing a piece of music that we all just co-created. When that gets recognize from the musicians standpoint, and the concert goer standpoint, I feel like that is the

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most powerful piece of what the Everyone Orchestra does. When we accomplish that, I feel really good about what I am doing. MM. Which musicians are the easiest to work with? Is there a formula to creating synergy? Do you feel what you do is a style of synergy, or something different? MB. I often use the word alchemic. I think there is synergy, and there is the magic between all of the different elements that we bring together. I’ve definitely had non-synergist energies on stage that have an incredible alchemic possibility that emerges. I’m willing to take a lot of risks, as far as putting different instrumentations, personalities, languages, cultures and whatever on stage, and trusting my abilities to work with everyone as a team. The only times that it really didn’t work is when someone was drunk, or the ego was so big, that is was too scary to break down, to let go, and go with the group synergy or energy. It’s a flat hierar-

chy on stage. If someone isn’t playing the game with everybody; everybody else immediately knows. (laughs) It is different then any other gig. MM. Last year the Everyone Orchestra performed twice at the All Good Music Festival. Do you plan on creating an entirely unique performance this year, or do you see yourself bringing back some of the elements from the year before? MB. The EO sets are very unique at All Good because they are so short. It is like a 35 minute set. So, we say, “Let’s jam the f*ck out of this one.” Maybe we will kind of change into it, but you really have to get into faster. I love it, I really do love it. It’s a short set, but a huge crowd. It’s really fun.

Web link:

Morel Mushroom Hunting on Earth Day Earth Day is a chance to celebrate the beauty that natures provides to the world. The editors of the Crescent Vale Network hit the forest floor of the Shawnee Forest on the Wild Turkey Trail. Jason Ross has been researching and hunting mushrooms for the past five years. He is a trained professional at selecting and preparing the mushrooms, and incorporating them into his diet. After twenty minutes of searching the grounds, we both started to locate morel mushrooms in small packs. Their honeycomb tops are an easy way to pick spot them against the brown leaves. April is a good month to go hunting for morels. It is also wise to go with someone that has experience in the field. “To pick it you pinch the stem, so that you leave a portion of the mushroom in the ground. One would break the mushroom at the stem and place it in mesh bag. When the mushrooms

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Southern Illinois Morel Mushrooms Written by Matthew McGuire

are handled in a mesh bag it helps spread the spores from the morel mushrooms,” Ross said. Ross helped show which mushrooms were safe to consume later. He pointed out that the

mushrooms go bad if not kept cold after picking them from the ground. He cleaned the mushrooms, and sautéed them to perfection. For more information:

SH: What is your name, age, and occupation? KB: My name is Karen Binder, I think I’m 52, and I am the distiller here at Grand River Spirits. SH: So when did Grand River Spirits become founded? KB: Well according to the state of Illinois we created our LLC in November of 2011. SH: What inspired you to get into this business? KB: Oh well now that is a long story. This story is rooted in the wine industry. As a practicing business journalist I had a very unique opportunity to follow the wine industry almost from infancy. At the time that I started to pay attention to our state wineries there were only 11 in the entire state and I’ve watched it grow and blossom and through the course of that experience I learned an awful lot about the industry. That led to the invitation

Written and Photos by Sean Hersch

Karen Binder - Grand River Spirits Owner Interview - 4/28/13 to apply for the executive director position for the Illinois Grape and Wine Resources Council. Great opportunity, very unique job, I was specifically tasked to work with grape growers and wineries to develop business and marketing plans; all across the state. So I’ve had opportunities to visit nooks and crannies that most people have never even heard of. And budget cuts led to the council being dissolved and that is so unfortunate because it was a wonderful outreach service to this new industry that was

blossoming. What we ended up doingwas making sure that the Illinois Department of Agriculture and Illinois Bureau of Tourism continued supporting the Industry. Of course I went back to newspapers but I always missed wine. So there came a day and it’s like “how do I get back into wine? We have upwards of 90 wineries in the State of Illinois we don’t need another winery”. And that is when I started investigating Brandy. Essentially when you distill wine you get

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brandy. And I thought “Well that’s something different. It’s supportive it compliments our existing wine industry in Southern Illinois”. So I started to do some research and I found out that if you had your still configured in the right way, then you can make all kinds of spirits. Not all, but most, and that is how it kind of started, spins off the wine trail. SH: Are there any other craft distilleries in the [Carbondale] area? Has anybody followed your path or are you kind of blazing a new trail? KB: Well as far as Southern Illinois goes for a legal craft distillery, yeah I guess you could say yeah we are the first to be licensed. Now, we all know moonshiners, they’re out there, they’ve also found me. There is one over in Saleen County who has a Whiskey that I would absolutely love to make legal, it is amazing. But you don’t find any other operating craft distilleries until you get up into Chicago,

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and that is where you are seeing a bulk of them. A good portion of the craft distilleries that are in operation in the United States tend to be in metropolitan markets. And that is kind of obvious that’s where the population centers are. But guess what? We’re sitting right in the middle of the best grain and fruit that you could ever want to put into spirits. So we are kind of the inverse, we are sitting in the middle of some of the best ingredients that you

could put into spirits, so we will go to the city. SH: Is there anything else you would like to add? KB: There is some real exciting stuff being worked on by a handful of whiskey makers who are real interested in smoke. When you think about barrel aging, and charred barrels, there is a certain amount of smoke related to that, but this is smoke flavor.

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Yeah Yeah Yeahs + 20-Person Gospel Choir Makeup “Mosquito” In spirit of Record Store Day the editors of the Crescent Vale Network have picked up some new albums to review for your reading pleasure. ‘Sacrilege’ starts off the bloodsucking fun with one of the strongest female vocalist in music showing off how the Yeah Yeah Yeahs continue to control the lead in rock music. Karen O belts out her patient vocals with a twenty person backup choir on top of the heavy rock rhythm structure created by Nick Zinner and Brian Chase. This album was released in the UK on Monday, April 15, and in the US on April 16. The self-titled track ‘Mosquito’ pumps up the BPM to easily create dance parties in locations that track is played. During the first listen of this album, the top floor of the apartment building I live, all stopped what they were doing to come over and listen to “Mosquito” with me.

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Written by Matthew McGuire | Image Provided

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - “Mosquito” Album Review

Guests started getting a little wilder when the tracks ‘Mosquito’ and ‘Area 52’ were being streamed live out of my room. Another mouthwatering treat that the album provides is ‘Buried Alive’ featuring Dr. Octagon. The hip-hop overtones layered well with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs heavy rock core. The beat gave room for Karen O to sing and put her own feel to the song, while still leaving room for Dr. Octagon to mix a

style of rap into ‘Buried Alive’. One of the most engaging song of the album for me is ‘Despair’ for the California style guitar playing by-virtue-of the East Coast. The drums drop almost two minutes into the track. It provides a certain level of importance when the band chooses to use the drums in their songs. Chase performs the Zildjian cymbals vigorously throughout the entire album.

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