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MP3/Video: Dum Dum Girls – “In the Wake of You” (live on KEXP)

I had a great weekend. What did I do? I worked. All weekend. Yup. And it was great.

Every morning before I work, I say a little prayer asking God to put me where he thinks I belong for that shift. Sometimes my assignment is rather mellow, and sometimes, much like this last weekend, it is so heavy that I have to pull my boot straps up and take the bull by the horns.

For those of you that have never “taken the bull by the horns,” the first thing you must do is stare down a bull:

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Then you simply just take those bloody horns… like so:

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Now, you might be wondering what all of this and John Bender have to do with “In the Wake of You,” by Dum Dum Girls… and to be honest, I’m wondering the same thing. In fact, I’m wondering so much that if I don’t find a connection, I’m going to go bazonkers.

I’ve. Literally. Sat. Here. For. 10 minutes. Trying. To. Come. Up. With. A. Connection.

You know what? Sometimes all you need is a nothing. Here’s a fantastic performance of “In the Wake of You” by the girls on KEXP (I’m loving this YouTube channel).

Dum Dum girls lead singer/singwriter, Dee Dee, first released an EP under the name “Dum Dum Girls” back in 2008. There have been 4 EPs and 3 albums since then, the latest being Too True release just this last January. Their indie pop sound makes me say, “Bully!!!!” whenever I hear it.13929

Wow. Did I just find the connection? I believe I did. BULLY!!!!! See? Aren’t you glad you stuck around for this?

Check out Dee Dee’s thoughts on the record here. It’s an introspective read on her writing process and inspiration to the entire album. The last paragraph is something that, I’m sure, all you creative types can relate to:

“I write this now, many months later, on the up. I have served the songs and the songs have served me. It is never pretentious to feel and create. So much of my life has been defined, aided, and even saved by music. Here is my best attempt at joining the rock’n’roll ranks, of chasing pop into the dark, and I am as ever, humbled that you listen.

XXDD”

She took the bull by the horns and came up with a record. What can happen if you do the same? Go find out!

Bully!

Download the audio of the above performance below. If you like what you heard, pass it on to someone else. Word of mouth is much more effective than word of not mouth.

Your Dig-It Download:

*** to download, click on the link and follow instructions ***

Download: In the Wake of You (live on KEXP)

Dum Dum Girls on: [Official Site] [Facebook] [Twitter]

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Twin Oaks – “Constellation Lines”

I always get excited when I come across artists from around my area. The Inland Empire is a treasure trove for discovering new music. The city is just outside of Los Angeles, and barely a couple of miles from San Diego, and Las Vegas is a Superman’s stone throw away. It’s a great place to develop and grow because of the location. I grew up here, and I’ll always have roots right in this town.1044838_554688581239530_1347544474_n

So when I came across Twin Oaks, I was more than pleasantly pleased. Made up of Lauren Brown (vocals) and multi-instrumentalist Aaron Christopher, Twin Oaks caught my ear with their spacious, evocative, and altogether gorgeous sound. Brown’s vocals bring me back to the first time I heard Hope Sandoval of Mazzy Star… it’s so easy to get lost in the voice…. and I got lost for a good few hours.

Their latest offering, The Lion’s Den, can be heard in its entirety on their official site here. This is the perfect record to put on headphones with and just drift away to some other world. Recorded in their own studio located in Chino, CA., The Lion’s Den is already getting attention from the universe. The track, “Find a Way,”, has hit the #1 spot on AmazingRadio.com. Go check it out and you can download “Find a Way” for free… just because you’re so cool.

Speaking of free downloads, you can absolutely, positively, and in all other ways get another album track, “Constellation Lines,” from their official site. Just click here and you’ll thank me later by sending me at least $10,000.

Oh, did I say $10,000? Silly me… I made a mistake with how many zeros (is it “zeros” or “zeroes”) I put in there… it should read $10,000,000.

You can also watch the video for “Liars and Thieves” below.

If you dig it, share it and pass it on. I know you already know of someone you can share this with… do it!

Twin Oaks on: [Official Site] [Facebook]

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New Music: Old Crow Medicine Show – “Brushy Mountain Conjugal Trailer”


old_crow_medicine_show_opry_0694-x600Ah, the sweet sounds of the early morning… birds chirping, lawn mower off in the distance, and the rumble of my belly. Either I need to put something in me or the exact opposite needs to happen. Give me a second to figure this out……….. be back in 15 minutes.

Yep, I was right. One of them happened.

So during my experience, I took a look at the email inbox I have for this site. I was shocked and awed at what I saw. Good people, I have 11,608 emails to read. Check it out—> Screen shot 2014-06-25 at 9.51.32 AM

Just to give you an idea of how many emails that actually is, there are 1440 minutes in a day. So if I read one email a minute non-stop, it’ll take me about 8 days to get through my inbox. Guess I’d better start drinking coffee again.

One email caught my eye. It was announcing the new album, Remedy by Old Crow Medicine Show. Very cool. Old Crow Medicine Show have been around since 1998 and if you’re a fan of bluegrass, country, folk, and some of that old-time-foot-stompin’ stuff, you need to get into this band. They’ve won numerous awards, they have a plethora of accolades from other artists, and to top it all off, their band name rhymes. Who could ask for anything more?

The opening track for the album is posted below. “Brushy Mountain Conjugal Trailer” made me forget all about my morning and inspired me to go make some eggs. Scrambled, baby. Scrambled.

NPR recently posted the entire Remedy album to stream. Click here to check it out! You’ll dig it for sure. “This is country music for people who think country music needs a whoopin’” says band member Ketch Secor (vocals, fiddle, other stuff). He goes on with, “Country music that knows how deep its roots run— from the dirtiest blues to the folkiest folk, the songwriters, the crooners and the Outlaws, to the Opry stage; it’s all here.”

Sounds good. Remedy drops on July 1. Perfect music for the holiday weekend!

Take a listen below. If you dig it, pass it on!

Here’s a bunch of upcoming tour dates:

6/28 Owensboro, KY @ ROMP Music Festival
7/01 Nashville, TN on the Grand Ole Opry @ Grand Ole Opry House
7/04 St. Paul, MN on A Prairie Home Companion @ Macalester College
7/05 St. Paul, MN on A Prairie Home Companion @ Macalester College
7/10 Tulsa, OK @ The Brady Theatre
7/11 Dallas, TX @ House of Blues
7/12 Austin, TX @ Nutty Brown Amphitheatre (with Ray Wylie Hubbard and The Wheeler Bros.)
7/14 Amarillo, TX @ Civic Center Auditorium
7/16 Morrison, CO @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre (with Carolina Chocolate Drops)
7/17 Kansas City, MO @ Uptown Theater (with Caroline Chocolate Drops)
7/18 St. Louis, MO @ Peabody Opera House (with Hurray for the Riff Raff)
7/19 Cincinnati, OH @ Buckle Up Festival
7/26 Charleston, WV @ Appalachian Power Park
7/29 Shelburne, VT @ The Green at Shelburne Museum
7/31 Toronto, ON CANADA @ Echo Beach (with Matt Andersen/Del Barber)
8/01 Montreal, QC, CANADA @ Osheaga Festival
8/03 Cooperstown, NY @ Ommegang Brewery
8/14 Harrisonburg, VA @ Rockingham County Fair
8/15 Schwenksville, PA @ Philadelphia Folk Festival
8/16 Cockeysville, MD @ Hot August Music Festival
8/17 Richmond, VA @ Maymont Park
8/20 Raleigh, NC @ The Red Hat Amphitheatre (with Shovels & Rope)
8/21 Charlotte, NC @ Uptown Amphitheatre (with Shovels & Rope)
8/22 Alpharetta, GA @ Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre (with Shovels & Rope)
8/23 Nashville, TN @ The Woods at Fontanel (with Shovels & Rope)
9/18 Los Angeles, CA @ The Wiltern Theater
9/20 San Francisco, CA @ The Masonic
9/24 Portland, OR @ The Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
9/26 Seattle, WA @ The Paramount Theatre

Old Crow Medicine Show on: [Official Site] [Facebook] [Twitter] [Instagram]

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MP3/Video – Vikesh Kapoor: “I Never Knew What I Saw in You” (live on KEXP)

I’m a huge Bob Dylan fan. I’ve been so since my oldest brother, John, introduced me to Dylan when I was just a lad. I remember making fun of Dylan’s voice, saying things like, “He can’t sing!” and, “Did a cat poop in his throat?”. My brother simply looked at me, shook his head, and muttered something about having an idiot brother.VIKESHKAPOOR

The reason why I bring this up is because Vikesh Kapoor (pronounced “Vikesh Kapoor”) doesn’t quite sound anything like Bob Dylan, yet reminds me of Bob Dylan. Maybe it’s the lyric… maybe it’s the harmonica and guitar… maybe it’s the phrasing… maybe it’s the fact that both of them have similar names… I can’t quite put my finger on it, yet my finger is on it anyway.

Take a listen to this hauntingly painful song, “I Never Knew What I Saw in You.” It froze me in my steps. I literally stopped walking in front of a 3-year old girl. She slammed into me, dropped her ice cream cone, and screamed for about 16 minutes. Her father then stood one inch from my face and yelled at me for making his daughter cry, but I just stood there, frozen, in complete awe of what I was hearing. I didn’t even move when the father punched me square in the face. I just stood there… listening.

Yeah, you don’t want to see my face right now.

I hope this song does the same for you. Check out the video and, just for kicks, you can download the audio below in the Dig-It section.

And if you like it, pass it on. Share it with someone else!

Vikesh has released his debut album, The Ballad of Willy Robbins. Pick it up on here.

One last thing – I know someone who knows the sister of this guy. Yep. I’m THAT connected.

Your Dig-It Download:

*** to download, click on the link and follow instructions ***

Download: I Never Knew What I Saw in You (live on KEXP)

Vikesh Kapoor on: [Official Site] [Facebook] [Twitter]

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The Wind and the Wave: “With Your Two Hands”


Every now and then I receive a text from a dear friend of mine telling me to check out a certain song or band. This time the text came while I was at work, so I was not able to listen until I got home. Boy oh boy, was I pleased when I finally took a listen. The Wind and the Wave is a duo out of Austin, TX. made up of Dwight Baker and Patricia Lynn. Baker is a producer that has worked with artists such as Kelly Clarkson, Blue October, and Loni Rose, to name a few. Pretty cool.

The Wind and the Wave is right up my alley. Soulful voice, bluesy, groovy music, and a feel that makes you feel… well… groovy. That about sums it up for me. Check out the track, “With Your Two Hands” below and then pass it on. Do as my friend does: text someone and tell them about it. The great thing about sharing is that you’ll get to experience it again while expanding someone else’s world.

Do it. It’ll make your day, hour, minute, second… I guarantee it.

Upcoming dates:

6/20 – Buffalo, NY @ Sportsmen’s Tavern
6/21 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Altar Bar
6/22 – Northampton, MA @ Iron Horse Music Hall
6/23 – Cambridge, MA @ The Sinclair
6/24 – New York City, NY @ Highline Ballroom
6/25 – Philadelphia, PA @ Milkboy
6/26 – West Warwick, RI @ Manchester 65
6/27 – Windham, VT @ Timber Ridge Resort-Friendly
6/28 – Bethleham, PA @ Steel Stacks
6/29 – Washington, D.C. @ Gypsy Sally’s
7/1 – Chapel Hill, NC @ Local 506
7/2 – Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West at King Plow Arts Center
7/2 – Nashville, TN @ High Watt

The Wind and the Wave on: [Official Site] [Facebook]

ItsAlive

It’s….. ALIVE!!!!!!


359582The image on the right says it all.

It’s been about three years since the last time I posted here, and what an amazing three years it’s been. I don’t quite know how to sum up this time except to say, “WOW. God is great.”

I don’t think any more needs to be said.

Now that this site is back up and running, it’s important that I don’t let another three years go by again without posting… which means that the content of TheFrontloader.com will have to change. The time I have available to write is far more limited than it was before, so I won’t be able to keep you updated multiple times a day on the most current music news… it’ll be difficult to upload tons of music daily for you to check out… reviewing a number of records a week won’t be possible… the whole point of this site will have to be rethought.

Now, before that previous paragraph makes you say to yourself, “Self? Let’s go check out some porn!” let me reassure you – change is a good thing.

Without change, there is no growth, even when it comes to those moments where you think the change is bad. I’ve learned that the obstacles you hit on your way to your goal are clear signs that you’re getting closer to the end. And in the end, it’s not the goal that you were really after, it’s who you’ve become because of the goal… that’s what turns out to be most important.

So who have I become? I guess you’ll just have to keep coming back to find the answer to that question. Funny thing is, I’m going to do the same thing because I’m curious, too.

You’ll still find new music here. You’ll still find posts by Sherman Bear (click here for a classic). It’ll take me some time to find my groove again, but I’ll find it. Oh yes… I will find it. So during this rebirth, please overlook any strange layouts or misplaced texts. I’m relearning how to do all of this and it’ll take me a while.

It’s good to be alive.

Thank you always for reading.