Jam Band Podcasts

Strangefolk Podcast

This podcast was a lot of fun to put together. I saw Strangefolk quite a bit between 1996 and 1998 in Vermont. In fact, some of the best live shows I have ever been to were some of these Strangefolk performances. I was at the first Garden of Eden shows and celebrated New Years Eve with the band in 1997 at the Wetlands. There were way too many other memorable shows to get into and you almost had to be there to really appreciate what it was like.

Rowdy. That is the first thing that comes to mind when I think of those shows. The energy was always really strong and the whole room would be moving. I continue to see the band today. I did miss the Jay Peak shows this summer which I was really bummed about. A lot of my friends who were there said they were pretty epic. If they play there this year, I am going to definitely make it a priority to be there.

Well, enjoy the podcast. This one was particularly personal to me and I wanted to throw together the right medley of tunes to capture them well at this point in their careers. As usual, I dug through many hours of shows and settled eventually on this playlist. I am probably going to have to do another one because I left out so many songs, but this is a good start.

Songs in this podcast are as follows:

Blues Tune 7/29/97
What Say You 1998
So Well>Funky Town>So Well 10/01/99
What Goes On 10/28/98
Diary 5/2/96
Speculator 10/05/99
Sidestep Blue 1999
I Tell Myself 4/23/99

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A Risky Bet against Climate Science

The current U.S. administration’s decision to remove regulations designed to help fight climate change is a dangerous assault towards the health of our environment and a move backwards from a sustainable approach to energy needs. How can the current U.S. administration look their own families in the eyes and believe deep in their hearts that everything just about every scientist is saying about human induced climate change is miscalculated? Is there anything in this life that you can be 100% certain about? I would argue that there isn’t anything you can really know for sure and when it comes to something as complicated and vast as our climate system, no one can be fully certain.

However, decisions being made at the highest level of our government imply certainty that climate change is not real. What does a warmer, less predictable world wide climate look and feel like? Many would respond by simply saying look around the world now. The scientific community has made it very clear that rolling back regulations on greenhouse gas emissions will ensure that temperatures will continue to rise and precipitation patterns will unpredictably shift. There will be increases in droughts and heat waves, more intense storms, sea level rise and an ice-free Artic.

There is overwhelming scientific data that has been collected over the years that should change even the most stubborn of skeptics minds. But, pointing to this evidence, which has been effectively done through countless organizations, talented writers, speakers, filmmakers, politicians, musicians and of course scientists the world over, simply doesn’t seem to reach the hearts and minds of those who continue to encourage and enable destructive behavior towards our beautiful planet and all of its inhabitants.

I ask anyone who believes in discarding years of progressive environmental policy based on scientific data: is rolling back federal government efforts to fight climate change worth the short term profits at the expense of a potentially less hospitable planet? Many would argue, including all countries who signed the 2015 Paris agreement, that discouraging carbon emissions ignites innovation and growth in the sustainable energy sectors. One must be blind to history to believe that unsustainable jobs for American workers today are more important than the potential ills our planet may face tomorrow. Just go visit the boom and bust ghost towns that litter our landscapes.

The stakes are too high for the future of our planet for these misguided bets against global scientific evidence. We should not be repealing environmental regulations. We should be listening to the scientists and working to make current and future regulations result in positive outcomes for our planet.

Environmental policy decisions made now will have far reaching impacts that will stretch far beyond the lifetimes of those in power.  The picture of a warm soupy planet that the majority of scientists are painting is not very pretty. There is a chance that the scientists are right. They tend to be pretty smart people and if they are right, how can we sit back and let what the Trump Administration is doing go on without a fight; a fight that must be won. Thankfully, the rest of the world is not following our lead and they are sticking to the promises they made in the Paris Climate Treaty.

This administration, along with recently becoming a father, has made me feel that the time for standing idly by while the future of our beautiful planet gets shortchanged at the hands of those sick with addictions to power and greed must end. The time has never been more ripe to reject short-term minded environmental policies. The time to rise up and demand action is now.

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String Cheese Incident Live Music Podcast

Jam Band PodcastThe String Cheese Incident sound has grown on me over the years. I was first introduced to them in Crested Butte, Colorado back in the fall of 1999. A dishwasher called out one night at a local restaurant that my friend owned and I was asked if I wanted to come in, help out and soap up some dishes. The icing on the cake for me was no doubt the incredible food this place served up.

I spent the evening scrubbing dishes, doing light prep work and other back of the house tasks. The kitchen staff was all jamming out to various String Cheese Incident shows and I was definitely digging it. I soon found out that one of the waitresses was dating the drummer of the band who lived in town. It also turned out that several members of the band would be playing an unannounced show at my favorite local watering hole, the Eldo Room. Later that week, I saw my first String Cheese show, met the band and would see many other small intimate shows while living in Crested Butte. I also would go on to see the band at larger venues with its entire line-up several more times over the ensuing years.

Up until working in the kitchen that night, String Cheese Incident was kind of foreign territory for me. I grew up in the northeast and in the years leading up to my move to Colorado, I had spent a considerable amount of time in Vermont. Phish for sure, as well as so many other incredible artists that were deep within the thriving jam band scene in those years, made up my collective live music listening experiences. At the time, I was comparing every experience I had to what Phish, as well as a whole host of other east coast/perhaps a bit of west coast too delivered to me from late 1993 through 1998. As anyone who experienced the thriving jam band music scene of the northeast during the 1990’s can attest to, these were pretty awesome experiences.

Jam Band Podcast

Image: Courtesy of Telluride Arts

Well, what a band String Cheese Incident has grown into over the years. From back porch bluegrass to underground electronica and everything in between, String Cheese spans a vast musical landscape that never ceases to surprise. String Cheese shows are a strange concoction of Hula hoops and work boots.

This mix, to the best of my abilities, captures their essence and soul. It gets a bit funky at times but it always brings it back home. Thanks String Cheese Incident for the  beauty you bring to the music world.
This edition of my jam band podcast from Soundcentury delivers a rocking variety of String Cheese Incident tunes spanning the years 1998 – 2016. Enjoy the music! Visit soundcentury.com for lots of good music and please subscribe and give a rating. It’s always cool to hear from folks out there who are listening 🙂

String Cheese Incident Podcast Playlist:
Resume Man 10/01/99, Hollywood Swinging > Colliding > Another One Bites The Dust Jam > Colliding 7/23/16, Grazin’ in the Grass 3/11/00 > Jam 11/18/98 > Born on the Wrong Planet 11/18/98 > Pocky Way 10/01/99 > Boogie on Reggae Woman 7/23/16 > Cold Sweat 7/23/16 > Hold Onto What You Got 11/18/98, How Mountain Girls Can Love 11/18/98, Best Feeling 10/23/99.

**Special Thanks to the Tapers… Give Em’ Some Love! The tapers who had their names published with their releases are listed below.

The String Cheese Incident
Cuthbert Amphitheater
Eugene, OR
July 23, 2016
Recorded and transferred by Rick Odeen

The String Cheese Incident
Satellite Lounge
Houston, TX
November 18, 1998
Recorded and transferred by Russ Minas

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God Street Wine to play three shows over the summer of 2017

God Street Wine Summer 2017 Shows

Guitarists Aaron Maxwell and Lo Faber, keyboardist Jon Bevo, bassist Dan Pifer and drummer Tom Osander will hit the road in early August for three highly anticipated shows. They will be on deck at the Peach Music Festival (date to be determined), Brighton Music Hall in Boston on Thursday August 10th and they will finish up at the Gramercy Theatre in New York City on Saturday August 12th.

 

 

 

God Street Wine does not get out much these days and catching one of these shows should be a priority for anyone who digs their music.

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The New Mastersound, Ron Holloway Band and Vida Podcast

Spices have a tradition of making food better. One spice is nice. Two spices is often twice as nice. Three spices and things are getting interesting. Sometimes just one flavor gets stale in the same way that just one spice is not enough to get the full flavor you are in search of.

I often think of bands and their sounds as spices. Sprinkle a few together and you get something nice. In this podcast, I brought together three bands. I started with the New Mastersounds and loved their funk but felt that I needed some more soulful vocals. I dashed in a little Ron Holloway Band with the down home cookin’ vocals of Rachel Ann Morgan and Black Betty to accentuate the funk and soul.

This left me craving some edge and in came a band that I recently listened to a really cool studio recording they made back in 1994. They called themselves “Vida,” and they are from somewhere in southern California but I don’t think they are still performing regularly together as a band. Anyhow, Vida really adds some heat to the mix and in my opinion, brings it all home. Together, these three musical spices create a listening dish well worth refrigerating for seconds, minutes, if not for hours.

Well, you might hate it or you might dig it. Hope you dig it. Enjoy.

The podcast is now available in iTunes. I am working on getting the subscribe button link to work but if you search for Soundcentury in iTunes, you will find it 🙂

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The Black Crowes

Jam Band Podcast

Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository

I figured it out in the shower after swimming laps in the pool. Donal Trump supporters are the people in high school who dismissed any band that wasn’t top 40 material. They didn’t make mix tapes, but if they did, they would have recorded the popular radio station programming. Underground bands were ignored until they were popular enough to accept. Today’s Trump supporters are making up for lost time. They have found their underground candidate and are running with him at full speed with their heads in the sand. The Bernie and Hillary supporters have traded NPR for the dusty mix tapes that sit in lonely boxes in attics and garages.

I admit it. I voted for Hillary. Sadly, I wasn’t able to vote for Bernie 🙁 It was an easy choice for me when presented with the alternate candidate who viewed the presidential race as no more than a challenge. A mountain worth climbing to the top of. An arm wrestling match under the world stage spotlight. One more trophy on a custom gold inlay mantle inside one of many cavernous dwellings.

Well anyhow, The Black Crowes were a band that I regretfully did not pay much attention to in the mid 1990’s. I don’t why I ignored them, but they were definitely not on my radar. Lately, I have been listening to some live shows from this time period and I have been really getting into them. During their live shows, they are not afraid to get into the jams and explore. You can hear all kinds of influences in their music above and beyond southern and classic rock. I hear lots of Allman Brothers and Grateful Dead in their jams.

Here is an especially cool jam by them recorded at at the Glastonbury Festival in the United Kingdom on June 23rd, 1995. I am currently working on a future podcast featuring a collection of songs recorded live between 1992 and 1997. Should be a pretty rocking podcast.

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Thievery Corporation Live at Burning Man 2014.

I listen to this show whenever I am looking to get inspired. Thievery Corporation is a musical powerhouse who explores the far reaches of music with seemingly no limitations. One of my favorite musicians, Frank Orrall, who is a founding member of the band Poi Dog Pondering, often joins them on percussion and vocals. Check out his work if you get an opportunity. This Thievery Corporation show is available for download via Soundcloud.

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God Street Wine Podcast

jam band podcast soundcentury

God Street Wine On The Road

Soundcentury has been on hiatus for quite some time and now that I am somewhat used to being a Dad to two beautiful girls, I am ready to get back on it. I would like to say that I have been out traveling the world seeing exotic places and doing radical things. Perhaps, I could tell you that I have been deeply pondering the future of Soundcentury at hip coffee shops, martini joints and fancy beer bars. You know, just sitting there in my faded Soundcentury T-shirt with my drink, massaging and twirling my light and wispy mustache. Those in the know would ask me. “Hey man, when are you going to get Soundcentury back up and running? My practiced response came in a  hushed husky voice “it’s got to be the right time man. It’s coming soon. I can feel it.”

Well, the time has come. No more calls from my agent asking me when I am going to get my shit together and start podcasting again. It’s time to rock. It’s time to spread the peanut butter extra thick on the blueberry jam. As I was nursing a delicious red IPA from my favorite brewery, The Black Bear Brewery in Orono, Maine, just a short walk from my house, I ran through the possible bands I could kick things off with. I went back and forth listening to tons of shows from a whole lot of bands. I ended up choosing a band that really goes back to my roots as a live music enthusiast or perhaps more descriptively, a seasoned progressive rock band connoisseur of sorts if you will.

I grew up about 30 miles west of New York City and in the 1990’s as a young buck, my brothers, cousins, friends and I would take the train into NYC to see lot’s of shows. I was a regular at the Wetlands during these years and one of the bands I enjoyed seeing in the city was God Street Wine. This got me thinking about the God Street Wine shows I have been to and how much of an impact they had on me as a young music fan. At the time, their incredible performances gave us all the inspiration we needed to go out, party and have a real good time. I never really did think too much about the bands name until I sat down to do this podcast.

Think about the name God Street Wine. It has to have a hidden meaning. Careful now, I am about to get weirdly deep in some mindless philosophical mud. I will try not to get stuck.

God, oversees Earth and all of us things that are alive that run around it. He apparently cares a lot about the living things on Earth but also provides a whole lot of opportunity for suffering. He must feel bad about some of this suffering, but it certainly doesn’t stop it from continuing. A strange arrangement he has with us indeed.

A street is a passage across a landscape. It is sometimes narrow. It can be wide. It often has a lot of travelers going in one direction or the other. It can take you from where you are to the next place you want to be. People live in houses along streets. Sometimes they are divided and sometimes they have holes that you have to avoid. There are speed limits that people often ignore.

Wine comes in many colors and often gets better as it ages. It brings people together to share in its beauty.

Maybe this is what the band was thinking when it brought these three different words together. The members of God Street Wine are the only ones who could truly explain the meaning behind the name. Who knows? I am sure someone cares.

The songs I picked out for this Soundcentury episode are derived from the years spanning 1994 to 1997. These were great years for the band. They broke up at some point in 1999, but often get back together to play reunion shows. The God Street Wine Facebook page stays up to date on what the band is up to.

I did my best here to put together a cool mix of God Street Wine playing live at a few different venues over the course of a few different years. I combed through numerous shows to find a collection of songs that work together and I hope you enjoy listening to it. Thank you God Street Wine for making this music. You poured your heart and soul into what you did here and it’s clear when you listen.

Songs featured in this episode include:

Driving West – (Fox Theatre 1994-10-27) > Warm in Here – (Fox Theatre on 1994-10-27) > Diana – (Ithaca 1997-09-12) > Are you for real? (Ithaca on 1997-09-12) > Who’s Driving? (Ithaca on 1997-09-12) > Instrumental (Toads Place 1997-09-25) > The Wall. (Ithaca on 1997-09-12) > Hello Stranger (Ithaca on 1997-09-12) > Happy Birthday Mr. President (Toads Place 1997-09-25) > Express Yourself > Nightingale (Toads Place 1997-09-25)

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Worldwide Companies Plan For 100% Renewable Energy. That’s Right Bonehead Skeptics.

A little positive thinking sprinkled with foreword ideas often leads to progression. A step foreword for a planet that needs it badly. Google announced that it plans to have its operations running with 100% renewable energy by next year. This is fantastic news for planet Earth and not so good news for the non-renewable kings and queens that are ever so slowly losing their grip on controlling how us Earth folks get around.

Google is not the only company with bold plans to move towards a more sustainable future for everyone. There is a whole host of companies out there who see the light and are investing into a sustainable energy model that will benefit the Earth and eventually their bottom line. According to their website, RE100 “is a collaborative, global initiative of influential businesses committed to 100% renewable electricity, working to massively increase demand for – and delivery of – renewable energy.” Currently, over 80 companies have signed an initiative with RE100 to make their way towards powering their business through 100% renewable energy resources. The list of companies contains some big names and hopefully they will start swinging the energy consumption pendulum away from finite energy sources. Take it from Urs Hölzle, Google’s senior vice president of technical infrastructure, “the science tells us that tackling climate change is an urgent global priority. We believe the private sector, in partnership with policy leaders, must take bold steps and that we can do so in a way that leads to growth and opportunity.” Thanks Urs from Google for stepping up and recognizing that scientific data collected by some of the worlds smartest people does actually indicate reality.

That’s right. Climate change is real folks. To one of our nations bigger boneheads, the madly disgruntled Rush Limbaugh, although I question if his real name is actually Rush, who has said in response to overwhelming scientific data clearly showing that greenhouse gases contribute to a warmer planet, “It’s just absurd, and it’s all based on bogus, bohunk computer modeling. There’s not one shred of scientific data,” I reiterate my assertion that you are indeed a class A bonehead who happens to have a crappy radio program with a low information audience. I will try to get to more boneheads future Soundcentury posts on environmental issues. There is certainly no shortage of them.

Here is an interesting tune by Mac Mccloud. It’s called the “The Bone Head Song.” This one goes out to you Rush.

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Talking Heads Live at 11/4/1980 – Capitol Theatre – Passaic, NJ

Anything at all from the Remain In Light tour by the Talking Heads is fantastic, but the show from 11/4/80 at the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, NJ is one of the best. Here is the band performing Crosseyed and Painless from the show. You can watch the entire show on YouTube and the whole thing is worth archiving. I love how they bend their sounds and extend notes out for extended periods of time over incessant percussion grooves.

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