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Spin the globe to discover what's on the other side

O cto b e r

20 , 15

Down Under's Pop Sweetheart & Satirist:

Kate Miller-Heidke "Insert the phrase sausage purse"

Globetrotters and we aren’t talking


KĂ­la (& Oki) Kanaga System Krush Moya Brennan Baka Beyond Angie Brown

Artistic Rhythms in a Suitcase

The Music Initiative Editor-in-Chief: Becca Finley Managing Editor: Liz Earle Staff Writers: Kyle Cannon, Justin Henderson, Nancy LaBarbiera, Jarret Ricci, TJ Weaver Heather Tattersall, Madison Rivas, Zach Stanton Creative Director: Joel Travis Graphic Designers: Devin VanTatenhove, Angie Brown Cover Photograph by Chapman Fowler Contributing Photographers: Ashley Brook Perryman, Ben Folds Logo Design: Martha Martin Director of Media Content: Chapman Fowler Shooters/Editors: Heather Brewer, Carl Mullins, Dave Baker, JP Biciunas, Jimmy Hall Digital Communications Coordinator: Kara Klein Director of Business Devlopment: Taylor Rains Promotions Manager: Carrie Cranford PR Assistants: Cecily Alexander CFO: Kelly Corley Office: 253 St. Phillip Street. Suite A Charleston, SC 29403 843-277-2483 Like Us On Facebook: Follow Us On Twitter: Watch Us On YouTube:

Hey TMI Staff! Kara

Buenos Aires

Giza Pyramids


Florence, Italy


Dublin, Ireland Madison

Heather T - The Seychelles Nancy - Italy Justin - Prague TJ - Athens, Greece Jarret - Panama Zach - Egypt Angie - Barcelona, Spain Carl - Montreal Kelly - Denmark Thomas - Fiji Heather B - Japan

Venice, Italy

Bora Bora Brandon

Seoul, South Korea

Not Pictured:




Tokyo, Japan


Monte Carlo



What’s Your Dream International Destination?


New Zealand



on the cover:

KATE MILLER-HEIDKE Kila (& Oki) {Ireland & Japan} PAGE 12-13 Moya Brennan {Ireland} PAGE 36-37 Baka Bayond {Africa, UK & France} PAGE 42-43 Kanga System Krush {Mali & West Africa} PAGE 52-53



Artistic Rhythms: A painting by Angie Brown


Emerging Artist: Thomas Champagne chats about recording his new album.


Coast to Coast: Austin: Grupo Fantasma Charleston: Mystic Vibrations Denver: Weedapeoples New Orleans: Iration


Noteworthy Contributions: Hugs from the Auntie Karen Foundation


Reel Music: Make it a movie night with Amelie


The Monthly Spin: Staff reviews of 15 up-and-coming albums for your reading and listening pleasure


Soundbites: Our readers across the States share their favorite style of international music.


Vinyl Roots: Look out! Here comes The British Invasion...

Ode to the Web: TMI pays homage to and


A-Side/B-Side/The Spin-off: Get your iPod ready for our staffcompiled playlists, inspired by this month’s international issue


Campus FM BS2: Big Stadiums, Big Sounds

Gadgets & Giveaways The Spynet Video Watch

3-Day Pass: Dominica’s World Creole Music Festival





letterfrom the editor

International music has always been a fascination of mine. I relish in unraveling the history of how different cultures from the beginning of time have heard rhythms, sounds and beats to create a universal language of music through feelings. Inspiration comes from the sounds of nature. Instruments are crafted from what our environment has placed in front of us. This month TMI explores the world to introduce you to artists who are embracing traditional music of indigenous nations like the Baka Pygmies of Cameroon (see Baka Beyond). And how baffling is it that we live in a world now where artists can collaborate between countries that are 6000 miles apart (see Kila and Oki)! Traveling to the land down under, we visit with Kate Miller-Heidke who although very well known in her native land, has been relatively unknown to American audiences until her song about Facebook became a youtube sensation. She shares her love of home, humor and her husband. We can never let our musicians who live in the States go unnoticed. So, we take a different twist in Coast to Coast this month to feature musicians who are heavily influenced by music from other parts of the world like Jamaica (see Mystic Vibrations) and Latin America (Grupo Fantasma). Come on a journey with us. Can't make the physical quest? Let the music transport you to wherever you want to go; we did. -B

artistic rhythms presents:

What or who is the greatest inspiration for your art? If you had to My work has always choose one piece been inspired by my that you have internal life — my created as your dreams and fears, the favorite, which things that get under would it be and my skin and keep me why? awake at night. Right now I’m working My favorite piece with a lot of textures, right now is the one and exploring the I’m calling “urbania” processes and tension (pictured, this page). between creation and I finished it earlier destruction. I like the this year and it shape of things being “urbania” embodies the future torn away, the color of my work, the direction I’m heading in. It’s 36” of things being painted over. My subject matter deals square, and quite a bit larger than the work leading with the current socio-economic climate, the effects of up to it. I love working large — there’s more room reckless consumerism and the industries of fashion, for intricacy and detail. In this piece, I love the beauty, and advertising on both the collective and open white spaces playing against textured areas, individual identity. Currently I’m spending time with and the detailed lines and forms rising from and the work of Rauschenberg, Chagall, de Chirico. dissolving back into abstraction. If you could travel anywhere in the world to be inspired creatively, where would it be? Italy. Greece. Spain and Portugal. Morrocco. Basically I’m obsessed with the Mediterranean. I’ve been to Italy a few times and I can’t get enough. The history and culture are so deep and still so alive. The light is different there too— more golden and rich... and everything seems more vibrant and real.

Angie is a mixed media artist who uses found and altered papers, objects, and oil paint to create highly textured and layered works on canvas. She is originally from Georgia and moved to South Carolina in 2003. She spent a few years in Columbia designing sets for outdoor theatrical productions before settling in Charleston. Angie currently works as a graphic designer for a large plaintiff’s litigation firm. When she’s not painting, she enjoys cooking, traveling, and composting, and often tries to finish freelance design work while her cat is asleep.

How does music inspire you and your creativity? I choose music for the mood it evokes. I prefer instrumental music when I’m painting—because sometimes lyrics can be so definite in their meaning. I don’t want to hear about some guy breaking up with his girlfriend if my painting isn’t about that. With instrumental jazz, electronica, and classical music, I am free to form my own relationship to the melody and rhythm. Who are your five favorite bands/musicians? Subsonica, an italian electronic/rock band; Gotan Project, an international salsa/tango trio featuring world-reknowned guest musicians; The Pixies, I’m not sure what their genre is, but I’ve loved them since the mid-90’s; Liquid Soul, funky free jazz/ hiphop, saxophone & turntables; and I will always love Miles Davis.

“where she keeps her dreams, while twisting between two worlds, apart from both, a part of neither” has been donated by the artist to the TMI charity art auction to benefit Carolina Studios. Carolina Studios is an after-school and summer program providing students with a safe environment that fosters creative, educational, and career-focused initiatives through music technology and media arts. Mark Bryan, lead guitarist and founding member of Hootie and the Blowfish, serves as the Chairman of the Board.

KÍLA An interview with Colm Ó Snodaigh


irst off, how’s the weather in Ireland today? It’s actually not bad. We’re having good weather at the moment. It’s very strange to have such good weather. We’re having a bit of an Indian summer. I’m still wearing my t-shirts. I haven’t started wearing my fleeces yet.

For over the past 20 years, the members of Kíla have released countless studio albums, live albums, solo work, DVDs, and all kinds of literary work ranging from short stories to poetry. Knowing what you know now and having achieved all of the accomplishments, is there anything you would do differently if you had the opportunity to do it all over again? Oh my God! I think that’s a bit of a tough question. Would I do anything different? I don’t know. I think you deal with the cards you’re dealt. I learned on the go all the time. We did things the way we did because we had to. The first show the band ever played was at the Baggot Inn in Dublin for a crowd of three people. You’ve now played at major festivals and venues in over 20 countries across the world. As a musician and a human being, which of these experiences has had a greater impact on you? We were doing a lot of busking when we first started, and people flocked to it. That was a huge learning experience for me. There was a remarkable camaraderie in the music that was being played in the streets. I don’t think it can be replicated. You contribute on flute, tin whistle, guitar, saxophone, percussion, and vocals. With having such a high energy live performance, what’s it like being responsible for all of those different elements? We work very much on instinct. If a piece of music needs more sound or something, I will play it. It’s not so much of a question of responsibility for me. It’s more of a responsibility to the music. If we have a set of jigs, the flute just ensues, ya know? It’s more about reacting to what’s needed.

You played at the Kansas City Irish Fest this past September. What was that experience like, and what was your reasoning behind playing that particular event? We’ve been two years in a row. I felt that we didn’t fit last year. I was a bit grumpy about it. This year was great, though! It just seemed to be better. Up until last year, we hadn’t played in the United States for seven years. We decided to start dipping our toes in to see if it was worth playing there again. Kansas City was the first gig that our agent got, and we usually take the work that we’re given. We have friends that had played there, and they said it was a great experience. In 2006, you collaborated with Japanese musician Oki. How did this unique partnership come about? We have a promoter in Japan, and when we tour over there, she likes to spice things up a bit. We had arrived at a concert venue, and just before going on stage, she announced that she had brought somebody along for us to play with. She was very interested in Oki and thought it would be a very good fit. And it was! We connected. We played well. It all made sense. Subsequently, we were asked to do a collaboration concert at the Festival of World Cultures in Dublin. So, Oki came over. We worked for a week and got a show together. We had recorded the event and thought we might get a live album out of it. After listening to it, we decided to bring him back over and record a proper album. His ability to fit in around seven people and our ability to fit around one person was fantastic. We created. We listened. We learned. It would be great to do it again! Who are some of your favorite American musicians? I would have to say Béla Fleck. He’s an amazing banjo player. A lot of the great rock n’ roll bands are American. There’s an endless amount of unbelievable blues players. Thankfully, there’s fantastic music coming out all of the time. But, there’s a fair amount of bad stuff coming out as well! Fortunately, you don’t have to go looking very far to find good music. Does a pint of Guinness a day help keep the doctor away? Well, it depends on which doctor you want to go see! It’s been interesting over the past while because a lot of small breweries have been popping up around Ireland. There’s a little bit of competition now, but believe me, it’s all good. However, there’s nothing quite like a pint of Guinness going into the wintertime! —KC

Kate Miller Heidke With 3 albums under her belt, Kate MillerHeidke, the award winning classical singer from Australia turned pop sensation awes audience with her satirical wit. Her acclaimed 2nd album, Curiouser, produced by Mickey Petralia (Beck, Flight of the Conchords) established her as a comedic lyricist with the voice of an angel.

re do you feel it can change the world? One of the most powerful things you can do to a hateful person is to mock them, which is why satire is such a powerful political tool. Jon Stewart is a great example. 

The Facebook Song became a viral sensation. How did you get the idea for it?

Tell us a little about the music scene in Australia and how it differs from the US.

I had the idea after I tried to friend request my ex-boyfriend and got ignored. The song is written from his perspective, about me being an asshole. 

Australia is about the same size as America, but with a population of only 20 million. Bands here talk a lot about “the tyranny of distance.”  Tour buses don’t really exist; you have to fly everywhere.  So the scene is very small and tightly-knit. 

You are now married to Keir Nuttal who co-produced your last album with Mickey Petralia. Both men who understand comedy. What is it like working so closely with someone you are also married to? How does he inspire you?

What bands/singers are you giving props to right now? I’ve been listening to a singer called Yma Sumac, and a band called Everything Everything.

Keir inspires me to try new things as a songwriter. He has lots of good ideas.  It feels like we’re the two faces of some deformed beast.  Sometimes we spend too long in the same room.  Both of us need to get out more.  Still, it’s a good arrangement as I feel we are creative soul mates.

Tell me a little about your other project Fatty Gets A Stylist. It’s a side project based on a different voice. The voice is a character called Fatima (hence ‘Fatty’).  It is a lower, more bratty voice than I normally use.  Keir wrote a lot of spiky electro-pop on the laptop while we were on tour, and Fatima sang over it, and we had an album!  We only ever had 12 songs, so song choices weren’t really an issue.  They all went on the album.

Favorite Comedian? Daniel Kitson. I also love Louis CK and Steve Coogan. 

Best book you’ve read in the last two years. We the Drowned by Carsten Jensen.

feel co to my

“It makes me

What do you love most about Australia?

Favorite Candy in Australia? in the US?

Coffee and breakfast in Melbourne. I’ve never had a better breakfast.  Also a lot of our beaches have magical properties that will heal your soul.  

I’m not sure if you have it in the States, but I’m in a Violet Crumble phase at the moment. I love the way it sticks between my teeth and I have to painstakingly lick it out for hours afterwards.  This is not candy, but my favorite American junk food is the cheese you can buy in a jar as a heated dip for corn chips.  Just the fact that it exists is a comfort to me.

While traveling, is there a flag that caught your eye?

I like the Australian Aboriginal flag. It reminds me of nighttime in the outback desert.

onnected yself...” lf...”

Do you have any weird food aversions? Food is my favorite thing to eat. However, I will not let cooked pineapple pass my lips.

Why do you love music? It makes me feel connected to myself and to other people, beyond language. Nothing else does that for me.

You were on a classical/ opera tract, but did you intend to become a pop sensation? I anticipated a career in classical singing. I never thought being a songwriter was a realistic goal, so I didn’t dare think about it.  

I heard Joni Mitchell had a profound affect on your life. Why? I think she forged new neural pathways in my brain, because the first time I heard “Blue,” I didn’t get it. The second time, I was mesmerized.  It was as if she lifted me onto a new plane of musical appreciation, which is a lovely thing to happen to you at age 14.  I had never heard such honest music.

Name the three songs that you are the most proud of and why.

What’s the best bumper sticker you have read?

“Nothing Will Be Missed” because it was the first song I wrote, and I still like it; “Caught in the Crowd” because I get lovely emails from school kids about it; and “Dreams/I Love You” because I managed to insert the phrase “sausage purse” into it.

I ¤ Dogging. I like that bumper sticker because dogging is a funny word.

Any current musical influences?

Favorite Vacation Spot? Luang Prabang in Laos, in a little cafe by the Mekong River, drinking a 25 cent bottle of beer at dusk.

I saw Jonathan Franzen speak a few weeks ago, and he said the biggest influence on his writing was his own past work. That resonates with me, because it’s important to me to put some space between my current songs and my old songs.  

Pick one...No Socks, Knee Socks or Garters?

Best memory from the road?

Do you find costumes/clothing to be important to project how you are feeling on stage?

Watching Ben Folds sing “Rock this Bitch” night after night, in beautiful theatres all over the world.

What are Garters? Is that an American thing?  I have a pair of black tights for every day of the week.

Not so much clothes, but shoes often have a certain inbuilt attitude. I’ve been wearing the same pair of black high heels on stage for the last two years.  I’m superstitious about them. 

Favorite after show cocktail? Gin martini, with olives, dry.

What flower/plant would you compare yourself to? I have too much respect for plants to compare myself to them.  

Guilty television please?

Supernanny and Gordon Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares (the UK versions – they are much filthier and grittier than the US versions). I’m also partial to a bit of Judge Judy.  Cops. 

What word do you like saying better than any other? Wednesday.

Any charity you support? I have done several shows in South East Asia for MTV Exit, which is a charity that raises awareness about human trafficking. They do incredible work. 

Where do you see yourself five years from now? I have no idea. Predictability is not really a feature of a music career.  I would like to have a kid or two by then though.

Any dates planned in the States for 2012? Yes! Not sure exactly where or when yet, but yes.

Kate, please get here soon! US audiences are eager for your wit, articulation & poise. -BF


DJ Ryan Smith WEGL 91.1 FM Auburn, AL

What's your favorite thing about Auburn? I love Auburn for many reasons but if I had to name my favorite part it would be the family culture we exhibit. I love the way our campus is laid out; it has a small and compact feel. Every day on campus I’ll see a ton of people I recognize and know which facilitates the family climate. Second, Auburn’s friendly atmosphere contributes to our family culture. We take pride in having a classy fan base and being friendly to the opponents we host during football season. This sentiment is not limited to tailgating and football games, rather it permeates our entire campus. Finally, it is the simple phrase “War Eagle.” I was thinking about this after our loss to Clemson walking around their campus just a short while ago. When I would pass an Auburn fan, we both displayed a dejected tone, but even so we would always say “War Eagle.” It is a simple phrase but it embodies so much. It is used in celebration, to show a feeling of community, it can mean “It’s alright,” but in this scenario it is a sign of brother and sisterhood. It means we are bonded by our love of Auburn University but more importantly everything we believe it stands for.

What's your favorite part of SEC football? The intensity on display at every conference game and the level of play are the best parts of SEC football. It is collegiate football played at its highest level, in front of the most fans, and owning the best rivalries. The depth, competitiveness, passion, and stakes all make SEC football the best. Do you or your school have any exciting football traditions? Yes, the best traditions! Obviously, I am biased but if there is one thing Auburn does right it is our tradition. The Tiger Walk, which is done by so many other schools, has an incredible feel here. The proximity to the fans and the interaction that the players and coaches choose to have with the fans makes our walk special. The flight of the eagle just before game time has to be one of the best traditions in the country. It gives me chills every time the eagle circles the stadium, while all the fans are yelling “Warrrrr,” then it makes a dramatic dive to the fifty yard line. The fans punctuate the cheer by saying “…Eagle! Hey!” Finally, there is the tradition of rolling Toomer’s Corner. After every win, droves of Auburn fans flock to the Toomer’s Corner to turn the two Toomer’s Oaks in a monument of toilet paper. The tradition has become so much a part of Auburn that our city council has a budget for toilet paper clean up each year! How would you describe the music scene in Athens? The preference in Auburn is good cover bands. I know that doesn’t seem too original but that is what we do. There is nostalgia for classic rock that you can see by going downtown. If you can swing dance to it then we like it! But there is also a hipster niche at Auburn. There is a sentiment to “keep WEGL weird” and while some DJs play more popular stuff, there is a lot of representation for underground and unique bands.


DJ Rixon Lane WUSC 90.5 FM Columbia, SC

What’s your favorite thing about the University of South Carolina? The atmosphere, the people, being at the university that I've wanted to attend my whole life What’s your favorite part of SEC football? There are no easy games. You are pumped up for every week because it's going to be a battle no matter who is on the schedule. Does your school have any football traditions? The playing of "2001" before every game, the release of Cocky, the players coming out of the tunnel through the smoke right as the music reaches its climax. I'll take that over rubbing a rock and jogging down a hill any day of the year. (P.S. Rock rubbing and hill jogging is what Clemson does before their games...they've dubbed it "The Most Exciting 25 Seconds in College Football.) How would you describe the music scene in Columbia? The music scene in Columbia is very eclectic and there truly is something for anyone to listen to, no matter what genre you prefer. Any local bands you think are up and coming? Full Color Footage


DJ Trey Irby WVUA 90.7 FM Tuscaloosa, AL

Wh What's your favorite thing about the University of Alabama? On the whole, UA is a shockingly friendly place that really lets people find their niche and calling. I was able to explore a lot of different ways to write and communicate better and that's really helped me in the long term. The community around UA can always be better, but it's really a place with a lot of worthwhile parts and creative kids.

What's your favorite part of SEC football? SEC football just gets a community response. I can't think of anything quite like it that produces constant talk among our community as well as essentially takes over our Saturday afternoon. There's that cliche we use in our hype video, “In some universities, they play football. At the University of Alabama, we live it.” We may just be that insane, I guess. Do you or your school have any exciting football traditions? There's always been the Walk of Champions before our home games where the Tide walks towards Bryant-Denny Stadium. On the Walk are these statues of great football coaches of the past, from Paul Bryant to Frank Thomas to Gene Stallings. The history and the winning tradition sort of sock you in the head when you see the players in crimson. How would you describe the music scene in Tuscaloosa? The music scene has two aspects to it: loads of active talent but not too many active places to display that talent. I've had to deal a bit sadly with friends of mine who want to go to shows in Tuscaloosa but aren't of age. Two of our main bars, Egan's and the Green Bar, are basically it for amazing original music, which we do have in Tuscaloosa. It gets worrying at times, but I'm glad we have the talent that we do.

“Yea, Alabama! Drown 'em Tide! Every 'Bama man's behind you;” Any local bands that you think are especially up and coming? Callooh! Callay! has been a band I've followed for quite a while (if it is of note to the article, I'm also a local music columnist for The Crimson White campus newspaper) and they tend to transcend boundaries and they're getting noticed for that. They have a lot of fuzzy elements, take from folk, run with pop hooks, and explore the work of authors like William Faulkner, which is insane for any band much less a band here. On other fronts, Blaine Duncan is a brilliant songwriter who takes what is great about Alabama's history with country and adds a wry sense of humor to it. The list could go on and on, from introspective songwriters like Joshua Folmar to brilliant technical players like Michael Battito and Ham Bagby.


DJ Andrew Aaron WUTK 90.3 FM Knoxville, TN What’s your favorite thing about the University of Tennessee? We are so close to the mountains. It's only a short drive to the Smokies. What’s your favorite part of SEC football? The competition. The conference has the best teams in the country battling it out week after week. There is always a great game to watch every Saturday. Does your school have any football traditions? We have a lot of exciting traditions. My favorite is Running through the T. At the end of the pregame march, the band forms a large T starting at the Vols locker room. When the T opens, the team runs through it to their sideline. That's when you know, "It's Football time in Tennessee." We also have the Vol Navy, Salute to the Hill and the Checkerboard endzones. How would you describe the music scene in Knoxville? It's all about the local artists. There are so many great places to see concerts like the Tennessee Theatre and Bijou. You can see live music every night of the week and it's always something different. Any local bands you think are up and coming? The Dirty Guv'nahs and Arpetrio.

“Here's to old Tennessee Never we'll sever We pledge our loyalty Forever and ever Backing our football team Faltering never Cheer and fight with all of your might For Tennessee.”

em erg art ing. ist .


Champagne Changes bring opportunity for rediscovery and creativity. From a musical standpoint, T. Champagne’s recent relocation to Charleston, SC from Austin, TX wasn’t quite as easy of a transition as he expected. It’s taken some time settling in to find his groove, but the last two months have given him a fresh perspective on his music, both in terms of what it means to him and the direction that it’s headed. In between busy weekends of spreading pimento cheese and playing music around cookouts and bars

on the SEC tailgate tour, he took to the studio with a group of talented musicians and friends in hopes that his new surroundings and influences would push him to deliver his most inspired work thus far. Produced through Chucktown Music Group with the direction of Mark Bryan and Danielle Howle, T. Champagne’s new four-track album sets out to tickle your funky bone in a sunshine smiling kind of way.

Last time we spoke, you described your music as being a mixture of New Orleans funk, island style grooves and Texas songwriting. What can we expect from your new material? It’s definitely headed in that direction, but Mark really helped bring out the poppy, catchy parts of the songs. I’m still maintaining my style, but it keeps evolving compared to my older work. It’s not just reggae or funk. It’s really a combination of these things, and I’ve been really pleased to hear it all on tape.

How did you go about writing songs for the new album? I did a lot of work prior to going into the studio by writing and performing the songs on stage. That’s a really good way for me to work out these tunes. I’ll usually write a song, then pass it along to the rest of my band. I’ll give them my idea for it, and since they’re such talented musicians, I want them to give me their input and rendition of it. We’re definitely more of a live band than a studio band.

What was it like working with the folks at Chucktown Music Group? Very interesting. I have definitely learned a lot as far as rearrangements and finding ways to chop a song down to really find the punch. I think we may have varied in style at times, but we were always able to come to terms on things to bring out the best in the music. It was a really exciting, new experience for me.

How’s the SEC tour going? It’s going well! We’re definitely having a good time. We’re figuring a lot of things out as we go, but it’s been getting better and better every week. Great things are happening out there!


SEC Tailgaters Wanted

October 22, 2011 BAMA v. TENN Tuscaloosa, Alabama

November 5, 2011 BAMA v. LSU Tuscaloosa, Alabama

October 29, 2011 AUB v. TENN Auburn, Alabama

November 12, 2011 USC v. FLA Columbia, South Carolina




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Coast to Coast

Our staff writers set out on a mus discovering the nation’s hottest l

sical roadtrip, local bands.



Weedapeoples Venue: Quixotes

Robby Peoples is truly an original sombitch. Not a misprint - sombitch is a regularly used word in his vocab. This Blues man provides a different kind of entertainment. Born and raised in

Jackson, Mississippi, Robby lives for playing for the crowd. He plays “ball-kickin rawk” with his soul filled harmonica. Add in some guitar, vocals and a little dance, too. Trading homemade CDs with his life-like portrait on the cover for drinks at the bar is how I learned most of the words to his songs. Robby thinks it’s funny that I like the singer/ songwriter stuff more than some of his more bluesy tunes. Often, the words change, depending on the night and the mood. This sombitch can put words together in a way that brings up an old memory or that makes you want to party. One of the first and maybe my favorite songs, “1 Track Soul and 2 Track Mind,” tells the story about a life we all have dealt with. Listen to it and you will see. “River Girl” is all about reflection on the past. Not to ruin the guys street cred and make him sound all sensitive, because he also might be one of the rowdier things I’ve ever seen at a rock and roll show. Weedapeoples did not disappoint; whether it’s blues, “ball-kickin rawk,” country or singer/ songwriter stuff, a switch gets turned on when Robby hits the stage. The kid can play, y’all.


Grupo Fantasma Venue: Momo’s

You can feel the energy in the air as soon as this 11-piece latin-funk group swaggers onto the outdoor stage. It is impossible to see this band live and not feel it in my bones, a rattle in my soul, and an overwhelming feeling of joy that only live music can bring. From those first notes that bounce off the stage, I notice my toes start tapping, and the beat moves my body until my knees start twitching, and my hips sway to the fusion of sound. Fresh off their summer tour, which began with their first Grammy nom for best Latin rock or alternative album, these boys have never sounded better. This is not your abuela’s Latin dance party. The band blends styles from funk, reggae, rock and of course, a hot and nasty salsa that sets your senses on fire. Although I am not fluent in Spanish, no language barrier exists here. The music makes you forget that what you are hearing is in a foreign language. After a refreshing drink while the band was on break, I return to my dance team, still somewhat sweaty from my previous Latin dance workout in front of the stage. The music begins again, and it’s strangely familiar. I know this song, I thought, it sounds a little different,

but I know it. It’s plaguing me, until the chorus starts. That’s it! I hadn’t recognized the tune up to this point, as it was in Spanish, except at the moment when they triumphantly shout, “Burning Down the House!” I’ll never hear that song again without thinking of Grupo Fantasma’s distinctive version. Simply awesome. -NL


Venue: Tipitina’s Starting as a garage band and stepping up to playing backyard college parties is as likely a story as any, but for Iration, their unlikely history sets them apart. With all six members hailing from Waimea HI and forming in Isla Vista, CA, Iration’s story of unity sets a commendable example for any up-and-coming band that sticks together. No strangers to the life of touring large, they appeared on the bill for Lollapalooza 2011 and on Cypress Hill’s Smokeout Tour 2010. I was able to catch them playing at Tipitina’s Music club in New Orleans on their fall “Lei’d Back Tour.” Iration sets the stage kicking off the set with a track off their new LP Time Bomb; a song so catchy I found myself humming it after the show.

Their sound blends reggae, rock and dub thrown into the mix courtesy of Joseph King. Other members include Micah Pueschel on lead vocals and guitar, Adam Taylor on bass, Cayson Peterson on Keys, Joseph Dickens on drums, and Kai Rediske on additional percussion and vocals. Iration’s songs are uplifting and feel-good enough to break up a case of serious clinical depression in Sweden’s rainy season and the crowd was definitely feeling the love. Other notable tracks played were “Electricity,” “Undertow” and the title track of their new album Time Bomb. The band’s chemistry onstage is as warm and enlightening as the grooves they flesh out and it’s apparent that they’ve managed to stay true to their tropical roots after five years and five albums (three of which are EP’s). While fans enjoyed the show, the positive vibes and energy permeated throughout me and the negativity and disorder of the world was drained through a make believe hole in the floor of legendary Tipitina’s. -ZS

Mystic Vibrations Venue: Chai’s Lounge

In a world entangled in the cruel, constant grasp of pain, hardships and suffering, music’s ability to deliver messages of hope, love and harmony inspires those oppressed to stand up for their beliefs and make a better life for themselves. Since the origination of reggae in Jamaica in the late 60s, musicians and advocates have accompanied these island style grooves with lyrics concerning social criticism to promote unity among all people and be the voice of the voiceless. In 1992, Little London, Jamaica saw the formation of Mystic Vibrations, a group steeped in the tradition of roots reggae that set out to continue what those before them started many years ago. Almost two decades later, lead vocalist and guitarist Ric Williams brought the positively sweet sounds of his homeland’s music to the US. The quartet’s optimistic atmosphere continues to ignite sentiments of peace and prosperity. As I strolled along the cobblestone sidewalks of downtown Charleston, the echoes of familiar reggae rhythms weaved in and around the historic streets and alleyways of the Holy City. As my pace quickened, my ears perked up like a puppy’s, intently searching for the location where the unmistakable Jamaican accent resounded. The sweet Caribbean vibrations brought me to a serene courtyard surrounded by palmetto trees and bamboo. As deep red, mood enhancing lights and torches flickered across the smiling faces of the members of

Mystic Vibrations, I took a moment to absorb the authenticity of their traditional sound on such songs as “Rasta Nuh Play Games,” “Baby Not In Sight,” “Answer My Prayer” and “Voices in the Wind.” The band’s message resonated throughout the audience with pure sounding melodies accompanied by nonstop joy and enthusiasm. Mystic Vibrations caused me to reflect on my own life. My soul swelled with emotion thinking of what led me to this point. It’s not easy. It never will be. We have to push on. Even in the darkest of times, music shines bright. One love. -KC

Moya Brennan As I scan through your resumé, I’m in awe of the immense body of work that you’ve compiled over your 40-year career. What’s been the drive and inspiration that has kept you putting out such fantastic work after all this time? Even from the word “go” with my family’s band Clannad, we brought about a new wave of Celtic music. There was always that challenge of trying out new aspects but still retaining the Celtic realm. We weren’t afraid to push the boundaries, and I like a good challenge. I think I would get bored if I stayed doing the same thing all the time. I’ve been asked to

do so many great projects, and I rarely turn them down because most of them are a challenge. It varies so much that it keeps me interested, alert and excited. You’ve performed in front of world leaders including former President of the United States, George W. Bush, and Pope John Paul. Has there ever been a time that you’ve had to pinch yourself to make sure you weren’t dreaming? I suppose when I was about to sing in front of the Pope and 2.7 million at World Youth Day. That was quite awesome! All I remember is going on and sort of holding my breath. Having said that, life is so short

and full of nice surprises. I cherish everything that I do. I take it all onboard and enjoy the moment for whatever is there. I’m at peace with myself and am a very happy person. QYou come from a family with endless amounts of musical talent. Did you ever envision yourself being anything else than a singer? Music was always going to be the center of my being. From my father being a musician, to my mother being a music teacher, and my grandparents always passing down traditional songs, music was always around. My parents made sure that we were learning instruments, and it was very much a part of our education. There was really nothing else. I did serve drinks in my father’s bar for a while. That was very fun! You are known primarily for your work involving Celtic and traditional Irish styles of music, yet you’ve also tapped into the electronic dance music scene by providing vocals for such trance songs as Chicane’s “Saltwater” and more recently, Roger Shah’s “Morning Star.” What about this style of music has drawn you to collaborate with these producers? I think my voice and what I do goes well with that style. It sort of lends itself to the more trance types of music. I find it fascinating, and it was great fun working with everybody that I collaborated with. If you’re really sure about the musicianship in yourself and where those roots are, you won’t lose that. You meet in the middle. It brings you to a different place, but you still retain who you are. In 2005, you visited the Congo for 10 days as a patron and goodwill ambassador to the Christian Blind Mission. What did you do during your time there? I support lots of charities, but this is the main one that I’ve really gotten involved with. We did a short documentary about three children from two of the villages that I visited in order to show the people over here where their money is going. I was also able to do some fundraising through concerts. The real heroes are the doctors and nurses that care for the people over there. Ireland has a rich heritage of musical talent ranging from The Clancy Brothers to Van Morrison. Who are some of your favorite acts from your homeland?

Well, the funny thing about that is I know them all! Ireland is a very small place, and after spending 40 years in the business, you just get to know everybody. Obviously, I love and admire the likes of Van, Sinead and U2, but there are so many more amazing musicians here. It’s really hard to pinpoint just one or two. You’ve collaborated with Bono and Robert Plant. If you had the opportunity to work with any other band or musicians, who would it be? I suppose I’m always open to unusual things. It would be interesting to do something with a rapper. I’ve been so in awe of some of the people I’ve worked with. When I was a young girl growing up in Donegal, never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined that the lead singer from Led Zeppelin would ask me to work on one of his solo albums. I feel like I’ve been blessed with the most incredible career! If there were something you could change about the music industry, what would it be? I wish more CDs were being bought. I grew up with vinyl, and I feel like that whole concept is lost, especially the process of creating album art. We used to read them cover-to-cover and look at all the pictures. It was such a joy, and it saddens me that it’s not like that anymore.


THE MONTHLY SPIN Steven Wilson Grace For Drowning

Heritage and remixing half of the original King Crimson collection, it’s a mystery how he has the energy to front another solo album. His sophomore album Grace for Drowning Deform to Form a Star. tenderly; a great pop track for new listeners to get into. The second disc entitled Like Dust I Have Cleared From My Eye includes his most epic song to date, “Raider 2,” a harrowing to see how remixing Crimson’s work has affected this material. Grace For Drowning is Steven Wilson’s most mature work to date and easily eclipses his prior solo work Insurgents. -ZS

Burzum Fallen Burzum is a one-man, black metal project from Norway that gained international notoriety by musician Varg Vikernes whose eccentric behavior lead to his murdering of guitarist “Euronymous” of the band Mayhem and several historic church burnings in the early 90s. This is his second post-incarceration album since being released on parole in ‘09 and transcendental harmony with the repetitive drums gifting it a techno vibe without actually being techno per se. This is where Burzum tends to shine if used on the right set of ears. It’s an acquired taste, but for black metal listeners it’s a treat. It incorporates the ambiance of his two releases recorded in prison “Daudi Baldrs” and “Hlidskjalf” and the raw energy that encompassed the albums Filosofem and Hvis Lyset Tar Oss. The key track here would have to be the title track where he explores the depths his wintry voice has to offer backing his raspy screams that usually compose the majority of his work. There is little improvement upon the shoddy production and mixing (done intentionally for atmosphere) but ultimately seems redundant after so long. -ZS

Portugal, The Man In the Mountain, In the Cloud Portugal, The Man’s new album In the Mountain, In the Cloud is a musical journey that traverses through many different genres. The eclectic samplings of soundscapes, sonic experimentation and synthesizers makes their sound original and unique. The keyboardist, Ryan Neighbors, offers a fresh synthesized take on the classic piano by playing three separate keyboards simultaneously. Their new album crosses many boundaries for the band, taking them out of the indie-rock plateau into a ferocious planetary-pop experience. Although iTunes labels the band as “psychedelic rock,” it is no Light” out now on In the Mountain, In the Cloud.


Rodeo Massacre If You Can’t Smoke ‘Em, Sell ‘Em This debut album from the Swedish-French trio, now based out of the UK, is a “21st century psychedelia” explosion! Their sound is part 60s garage rock blended with rootsy American southern blues and part transcendental soul. The vibrant, angelic funk sound that lead vocalist Izzy belts out with raw gusto in “Desert Man” is a perfect pairing to the heavily distorted riffs of the Dick Dale inspired guitar, played by Zorba. The kitschy western vibe complete with horns, rattlesnake shakers, castanets and triumphant cymbals are among many unexpected instruments found throughout this album. My favorite is the historically lame organ turned rock staple played by Pat Dam Smyth that majestically resonates out of the background into the breakdown of songs like “Mama Told Me So” and “Love.” Rodeo Massacre pays homage to a past generation, providing a cutthroat playfulness to an already distinguished era of music, creating a sound that is pure rock gold; imagine if The Raconteurs had a lovechild with Janis Joplin. So put on your rosecolored glasses, hike up those bell-bottoms, and watch The Valley of the Dolls on mute for the ultimate Rodeo Massacre experience. -LE Opeth Heritage After 20 years of member changes, ingenious collaboration, and nine studio albums, Swedish heavy metal act Opeth brings to the world their 10th and highly anticipated album, Heritage. Lead singer and guitarist Mikael Akerfeldt spent nearly half a year writing and composing the record before presenting it to the other four members to add their touch to the recording process in January 2010. Mixed and co-produced by Porcupines Tree’s Steven Wilson, Heritage is cunningly coated with elements of folk, classical, score that resembles the likeness of an eerie Beethoven weaved with an obscure Mozart. As a tribute to the late Ronnie James Dio, the fourth song off the record, “Slither,” manifests a fashionable 70s and 80s metal sound with hasty electric guitar picking, steady hammering double and single bass, and harmonious emotional vocals. -DV

Eddy Current and the Suppression Ring Rush to Relax Catapulting from Melbourne, Australia straight to the US, this surly quartet of ex-factory workers chisel their name into the Memphis, TN garage punk scene by way of Goner Records. The band’s third album, Rush to Relax, released in early 2010 is a culmination of real people with ordinary problems playing simple, raw and fast Rock and nods to garage punk heavyweights like Atlanta, GA’s own The Black Lips, ECSR’s sound stays true to the genre. The album, recorded in just six hours, is perfectly under-produced with heavy buzz saw distortion, catchy hooks, rambling bass lines, and tight machinegun drumming. The ten-song album mesmerizingly captures the listener’s ears with choruses –LE

Charlotte Gainsbourg IRM Charlotte Gainsbourg, daughter of famed French musician/director Serge Gainsbourg, delves deep into her psyche to create her third studio album IRM. Alongside with Beck, who produced and cowrote the lyrics, they piece together an album which mirrors her traumatic accident that caused a cerebral hemorrhage in 2007. Haunting, seductive and pun intended) by introducing a mature outlook on the afterlife. The title track “IRM” (IRM is the French acronym for magnetic resonance imaging) focuses solely on her experience of receiving several MRI’s and even replicates the machine’s sounds. beautifully crafted “La Collectionneuse” that inspires and gives hope.


Anathema We’re Here Because We’re Here Anathema’s 8th full length studio album We’re Here Because We’re Here continues further down the path of soothing progressive rock departing furthermore from their doom metal roots after forming in 1990 Liverpool, England. While this will surely continue to disappoint fans of older material they should no doubt gain new ones with this superb release. Half the tracks here are chock full of beautiful synth effects accompanied by distorted post-rock guitar melodies that meld together perfectly while other tracks like “Everything” and “Dreaming Light” utilize clean piano and steady rhythms to drive the accompanied by female vocalist Lee Douglas whose enchanting voice is the perfect aid to his melancholy cries. Highlight tracks here are the opener “Thin Air” with its slow build up and crashing climax, and “A Simple Mistake” with brightening lyrics like “rise and be your master you don’t need to be a slave of memory ensnared in a web, in a cage.” We’re Here Because We’re Here is both a great artistic benchmark for the progressive rock world and the existential philosophical world beyond it. -ZS

The Kooks Junk Of Hearts The recognized English Indie rock band, named after a David Bowie song, just released their third album. Experimenting with different sounds but still retaining their Britishpunk beats, “Junk of Hearts” heads into the right direction. Lead vocalist/guitarist Luke Pritchard continues to have an invaluable ear for melody, while his songwriting skills are maturing with the expansion of growth and success. Each track on the album ignites the fury of love, whether by heartbreak or pure curiosity of the heart, and is refreshing to the soul. “Time Above The Earth,”one of the most beautiful yet simplistic tracks driven by the sound of a string quartet, showcases the band’s musicality. “Taking Pictures of You,” while pleasing to the ear, focuses more intently on lyrics, leaving the listener unclear, almost steering the imagination to a darker side. On a brighter realm, the lead single, “Is inspired The Kooks.


SebastiAn Total SebastiAn’s debut album, Total, carries on the proud tradition of French producers and last six years producing a distinct blend of distorted bass driven bangers and remixing Daft Punk and Rage Against the Machine, SebastiAn brings it full circle with 22 songs ranging in vast styles from synth dance-pop to electro-metal. When he’s not showing off his modern spin on 80s soulful funk with “Love In Motion,” “Embody” and “Arabest,” he’s testing the limits of your speakers with “Fried,” “Total” and “Motor”; songs best heard speeding through the streets of Paris at night. Whether you’re looking to move like headbanging fury, or simply be amazed by the sheer intricacy of the album, SebastiAn wraps it all together into a Total package. -KC

Digtalism I Love You, Dude German duo Digitalism continue to evolve their indie-electronic crossover sound on their second full-length album, I Love You, Dude. Four years after the release of their 2007 hit Idealism, Jens Moelle and Ismail Tüfekçi deliver a solid, yet mere ten-track effort ranging from the gritty, underground pulse of “Antibiotics” to the blissful whisper of “Just Gazin.” The group’s infusion of indie and electro elements shines brightest as Moelle takes to the mic over the tenacious bass of “Circles.” Named for the city’s red-light district in the swirling lights of electro infested screamo. The attitude evoking beat of “Miami Showdown” and the toe-tapping, dance worthy rhythm of “Encore” closes the pages on the second chapter of the group’s story. While it doesn’t quite play out in the same dramatic fashion as its predecessor, I Love You, Dude expanding upon their hybrid style. -KC

Rammstein Liebe ist für alle da Very controversial since their inauguration in 1994, German industrial metal band Rammstein discharges their 6th brilliant, nebulous, and sky opening album, entitled, Liebe ist für alle da. Translated “Love is there for everyone,” the album was tallied in the Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Persons in Germany, for its apparent “obscene” artwork in the inside jacket. Overtaking double platinum status, the technofollowing. Sounding like militants marching through a city of rubble slowly ascending into the celestial sphere, the second song off the record, “Ich Tu Dir Weh (I Hurt You),” comes together with a reverbing and decaying synth introduction, promenading bridges, and an enchanting and epic chorus: “I have been in heat for a few a days, so I’ll go hunt a female deer.” Shows lead singer Till Lindemann comparison of an animal being hunted by the huntsman, to the Jews being persecuted by the Nazi Party in the song “Waidsmanns Heil” (Huntsman Heil). The album is a must for any listener who loves catchy, political, and evolving music. -DV

AWOLNATION Megalithic Symphony AWOLNATION, an American indie rock band, dropped their second album, Megalithic Symphony, album, they’ve shown that it’s possible to mix different sounds on a single record without loosing an audience. It’s as if Elvis, Kings of Leon, Lenny Kravitz and My Chemical Romance all put their musical prowess together and created AWOLNATION. “Sail” takes the title as the band’s biggest record, and for very good reason. The song combines drowned vocals, with a killer synth and banging drums for a standout track. “Burn it Down” pumps up the energy with Elvis inspired vocals and heavy drumming for one nasty garage band sound. One listen to “Guilty Filthy Soul” and you’re sure to have a smile on your face. For this track, the band mixes an old rock sound with soulful vocals; it’s pure musical genius. Mark my -TJW words: AWOLNATION will take the music world by storm. New Mastersounds XII 9/2/11 from Although they’ve been touring the States for quite some time, funky quartet New Mastersounds call Leeds, England home. Since forming in 1999, this high-energy group has paved a smooth road amongst the jam world. This show, a powerful two sets from energy builds especially true during, “Pure.” The quick beats, strong bass lines, and smooth guitar rhythms gets the crowd dancing. As the set comes to close with, “Carrot Juice” a keyboard-heavy tune with an uplifting melody, leaves the highlighting their improvisational jamming skills, a perfect choice to bring the music back. A minor technical set back during, “In The Middle” doesn’t stop the boys as they continue to rock it out for the remainder of the show. Proving that these international funk stars are professional groove makers! -CC

Isola Dusk Call Your Name Hailing out of Bristol, UK, Isola Dusk takes electronic-trance music to a more respected level. The soft piano resonance with the angelic voice of Alice-Marie Archer and their perfectly placed electric sounds creates relaxing yet up-beat music. Their latest 4 track EP, Call Your Name, started its worldly travel across internet streams on September 10th, 2011. The title track has a soft melody with fast moving beats. Alice-Marie’s sweet, innocent voice allows your mind to wander into a world of your own. Indie the different inspirations into one remarkable song. The tribal beats with the whimsical voice and poppy melody marry very well together. The members of Isola Dusk are cultural beings which become expressed in their music. Check out their new EP, and let their magical compositions take you away. -CC

KANAGA SYS KSK is an independent record label focused on the preservation and promotion of traditional music from West Africa. This is an interview with Aja Salvatore, the founder and owner. How did you come to be the founder and owner of Kanaga System Krush? My brother and I are serious students of West African percussion. I had gotten into studying string music from that part of the world too, and I wanted to take my studies to the next level. We went over to Mali with a teacher of ours. When I got home after that first trip, I came into a little bit of money and decided that I wanted to start recording albums with some of these amazing musicians over there. What is the goal and mission of KSK? Real music. It’s a fair trade label where we cut the profits with the artists. It’s been a lot of work for me, but I love the music. The level of musicianship in Mali is so high. I feel like their music is so easy for us to get into. It’s the elements of the cornerstone of some of our great music, the blues and jazz. I want to do something different. I want to help people. I want to encourage them to work hard through their music. We believe that there are huge open roads for prosperous careers for talented musicians who are willing to put in the effort.

KSK describes itself as a combination of beat junkies who love djembe music, rumba, hip-hop, reggae, and jazz among other styles that are part of your music collection. How do you think your involvement and these styles have influenced the traditional sounds of the artists that you work with? I grew up fifteen minutes outside the Bronx so I was exposed to a lot of hip-hop, reggae, and dance hall as a teenager. I think we’re adding some of the production value of what makes those styles pop to our artists’ music. Ironically, their music is the root to a lot of those styles. It’s amazing to hear the similarities of some of the drum rhythms I’ve come across in villages in West Africa compared to some that I’ve heard in Jamaica. I studied guitar for six years with a guy named Zani Diabate who is considered to be one of the greatest guitar players to come out of Mali. Unfortunately, he passed away before I got to record his electric stuff like I wanted.

STEM KRUSH You are currently producing a feature length documentary entitled Music In Mali: Life Is Hard, Music Is Good. What’s the purpose of this film? How’s the production process coming along? And when can we expect a release?

We’re hoping to get it out by spring of 2012. We’re working really hard on a rough cut right now. We’ve gotten some flack from some people for taking the time that we did to shoot it but that totally represents how we do everything. Anybody could rush over to Mali, pick the five biggest stars, shoot some cool music segments, and make a really produced product. I wanted to capture the music scene and follow people around. There’s so much story to tell there. It’s been a huge project. If I hadn’t started the way I did, I wouldn’t have footage of all these people before they died. There are four people in it that have already passed on. The film has a lot of themes. It’s basically about Mali and music. It’s got some really hot musical segments shot in some really cool locations. The people of Mali definitely embody the idea of life is hard, music is good. Your logo features Fela Kuti’s quote, “Music is the weapon of the future.” What does that mean to you and KSK? That’s it right there. I started listening to Fela’s music when I was fifteen. He’s every bit as big as a Bob Marley. He fought politicians with big band, African funk. As a person, he inspired me beyond belief. Music is the way to wake a lot of people up. Why should people care about the preservation and promotion of traditional music from West Africa? As Americans, it’s no different than wanting to preserve something like Italian culture because of the impact they’ve had on our country. This is the culture and heritage of a huge percentage of people who make up the American population. That alone gives it a lot of value. Africans have been influencing American culture ever since they got here. These West African musicians represent music that’s not made just for getting rich and famous. It’s real music. Just listen to it and see how it makes —KC you feel.

soundbites. what is your Alice-Marie Archer: Bristol, UK "Traditional Indigenous Sammi People Music, Joik"

Pete Thomas: Bristol, UK "American 70's Psychedelic Rock" Kelly Averett: Chattanooga, TN "Latin music love to merengue."

Ryan Abernathy: Jacksonville, FL "Ambient beats infused with traditional Indian instruments."

Robert Cranford: Columbia, SC "Pantah du Prince"

Nick Heeter: "Chinese dub step"

James Massey: Savannah, GA "Original African beats"

Andy Guarnera: McKinney, TX "Brazilian Lounge Music"

favorite international style of music? Ashton Whiteley: Boulder, CO "Italian, I love the language."

Ben Blackmore: Bristol, UK "Brazilian Music" Amanda Kennedy: Mississippi "Hispanic sounds- salsa beats." Blair Buttram: Atlanta, GA "Love to dance any style of Latin music."

Danielle Simonion: Athens, GA "European techno beats."

Cooper Salter: Clemson, SC "Jam music because you don't know what to expect until you see it live."

Gretchen Roberts: Charleston, SC "Ambient/ Trip Hop"

Heather Martin: Paris, France "I am personally obsessed with all things French culture. The music is great! My favorite song is Inna Modja "French Cancan," because the beat makes me want to shake my groove thing and I love her accent."



Vinyl Roots ARE COMING!”

Naturally, the 1960s open with, among many things, music in turmoil. An estimated 1/3 of the U.S. population is under the age of 20 with a lust for something…anything. By 1963 this massive throng of youth is being divided on multiple musical fronts. The surf-rock sounds of The Beach Boys, the upstart Motown sound, and the East Coast Doo-Wop groups are all competing for the attention of the Baby Boomer nation. This all changes on February 9, 1964 when a foursome of mop-topped Brits called The Beatles perform on the Ed Sullivan Show in New York. The British Invasion has landed on American soil. In order to fully understand the magnitude of this event, we must first hop back across the pond to where it all begins. Ironically, the British youth spend the greater part of the 50s idolizing and emulating American rock and roll. But as the 60s roll around, British rock evolves into a mesh of blues, soul, rock and

more. This melting pot of genres known as Beat Music uses Liverpool as its ground zero with its “Merseybeat” scene. This port city actually has access to American rock and roll and its guitars, a hot and coveted commodity in GB. As a result, Liverpool Beat bands such as The Beatles, Gerry and the Pacemakers and The Searchers are heavily influenced by American rock. Bands outside of Liverpool like The Rolling Stones, The Kinks and The Yardbirds adopt a more blues-influenced style. By 1963 Great Britain is neck-deep in “Beatlemania,” the four-man beat band comprised of John Lennon (rhythm guitar, vocals), Paul McCartney (bass guitar, vocals), George Harrison (lead guitar, vocals), and Ringo Starr (drums, vocals). As Beatlemania runs rampant, Parliament conducts special sessions to discuss the thousands of police officers risking their own safety to protect The Beatles.

The U.S. joins the party a little late when it comes to The Beatles. Due to conflicts that Capital Records allegedly has with the band member’s “mop-top” haircuts, the Fab Four’s first two albums are blocked. However, when the Beatlemania in Great Britain airs on a CBS news report, demand for The Beatles music shifts into overdrive. There is such a demand that Capital Records is forced to rush the release of “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” which vaults to the top of the Billboard charts in short order. A few weeks later approximately 40% of the American population (74 million people!) witness the Invasion on The Ed Sullivan Show. Despite being credited for starting the British Invasion, The Beatles are actually not the first of the soon-to-be famous Brit bands to tour in the States. The Rolling Stones and The Kinks have already embarked on U.S. tours by the time The Beatles arrive. However, these bands are not immediately successful in the U.S. until they “get a little help from their friends.” This exposure to British rock ultimately changes the face of rock music forever.

The British Invasion all but ends the styles of music that Americans are listening to. Teen Idols…a distant memory. Doo-wop groups…a phased out trend. Surf music washed aside by the surging rock tide. Americans start wearing their hair long and the seeds to the Counterculture Movement are planted. Rock bands spring up in every garage of Anytown, USA with many having littleto-no commercial success. Nonetheless, the Brits have provided the formula and anyone with a lead guitar, bass guitar, rhythm guitar and a drum kit can toil away in their garages, looking for that next big hit. This leads rock into new and unfamiliar territory.

While the British help establish rock as a viable genre, their pop-rock style does not last any longer than 1966. Many of the invasion bands fall by the wayside as rock progresses and splinters into many different sub-genres. A handful of the invasion bands keep pace and evolve with the music. The Beatles become the best-selling band of all time with Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones not far behind them. With pop music where it is today, we can only pray that those limey Brits are scheming another invasion. Let’s just hope that it happens sooner, rather than later, before we all lose our minds.


d i S A

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Erin's Mix: Around the World In 12 Songs

1. Lykke Li - “Little Bit” 2. Sia - “Buttons” 3. The Kooks - “Is It Me?” 4. Manu Chao - “Bongo Bong” 5. Kate Nash - “Pumpkin Soup” 6. Ellie Goulding - “Lights” 7. Little Dragon - “Ritual Union” 8. Ane Brun - “My Lover Will Go” 9. Missy Higgins - “Where I Stood” 10. La Roux - “Colorless Color” 11. Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra - “Tongues of Fire” 12. AR Rahman - “Fanaa”

B-Side Kyle’s Mix: Dance Around The World

The Spin-off Tracks from the Monthly spin

1. Opeth - “The Devil’s Orchard” 2. Rammstein - “Ich Tu Dir Weh” 3. Rodeo Massacre - “Mama Told me So” 4. Eddy Current and the Suppression Ring - “ Anxiety” 5. Digitalism - “Circles” 6. SebastiAn - “Fried” 7. Charlotte Gainsbourg - “Heaven Can Wait” 8. Watch the Throne - “Otis” 9. Portugal, The Man - “All Your Light” 10. Anathema - “Thin Air” 11. Burzum - “Fallen” 12. Steven Wilson - “Raider 2” 13. Isola Dusk - “Call Your Name” 14. New Mastersounds - “Miracles” 15. The Kooks - “Time Above the Earth”

1. Daft Punk - “Indo Silver Club” 2. Crookers - “Gypsy P” 3. Le Knight Club - “Holiday On Ice” 4. Flight Facilities - “Foreign Language” 5. Justice - “DVNO” 6. Steed Lord - “Midnight Affair” 7. Thomas Bangalter - “On Da Rocks” 8. The Twelves - “Nightvision” 9. Yuksek - “On a Train (The Magician Remix)” 10. Breakbot - “Shades of Black” 11. Duck Sauce - “aNYway” 12. Yolanda Be Cool - “Afro Nuts (DCUP Mix)” 13. Escort - “Cocaine Blues”


The International Issue  

Issue:1 Volume:8

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