Codfish Hollow Kicks off the 2013 Season with Bern in the Barn on May 4th

Bern in the Barn

The winter had overstayed its welcome in Eastern Iowa this year and with the frost finally succeeding and the bulbs pushing their greens up in anticipation of flowering, we can finally (hopefully) start looking forward to Spring and Summer and to the recent announcement by Codfish Hollow of the first show in the barn this year!

Last year we saw two really amazing events in the Codfish Hollow Barn stage even without an official Daytrotter Barnstormer show. July 4th brought  a mind-melting and body-dehydrating appearance by Counting Crows and their touring Outlaw Roadshow lineup for what would certainly be for the 650 people who saw it the best show they’ve ever seen. The laid-back and mellow atmosphere seemed to coax a normally grouchy Duritz to hang out with people outside the venue and pose for pictures and pause for autographs. The show inside the barn was electric and even with the failure of the stage electric fans the bands sweated their way through their sets and Counting Crows put forth an unprecedented 3 hours on stage! Codfish Hollow then put all their political chips on support of the Democratic Party with a chilly October show featuring a lineup headlined by Pieta Brown and Dave Zollo and the Body Electric.

On May 4th (May the Fourth Be With You!) Codfish Hollow returns with a show featuring Dan Bern! Called amusingly enough, “Bern in the Barn” the lineup also features Outlaw Roadshow veteran Field Report as a solo performance by Christopher Porterfield, 2013 Outlaw Roadshow act Daniel and the Lion, Cincinnati band Pomegranates, Athens, GA band Twin Tigers who have a sound somewhere between Lou Reed and Sonic Youth and maybe Barnstormer alums Suckers, and Iowa City guitar popsters Chasing Shade. You should check out Chasing Shade’s song “Sunburned Bones,” BTW.

So, click on all those links above to find out what these bands are about– but it’s looking like a wonderful evening of music for a very resonable $18 in advance. There will be the regular lineup of food vendors onsite, and the scattering of fire rings to keep warm– this barn is down in a hollow for gosh’s sakes, and the sun quickly ascends the road out of there in the evening, and 10 degree temp drops are not uncommon– so pack a sweater, kids!

These shows at Codfish Hollow are always wonderful and are special shows for bands and fans alike and are really a must-see for anyone who can make it. Much  love, respect and gratitude is due Tiff and Shawn Biehl for continually bringing the magic to their barn.

The food vendors will be providing Grilled chicken sandwiches, BBQ pulled pork sandwiches, Hot dogs, Veggie dogs, Nachos and cheese, Chicken/pork nachos, Vegetarian Bean Nachos, Chips, Giant Dill pickles, Candy bars, POP- Mt.Dew Pepsi, Diet Pepsi,Sprite, Bottled water, Coolers are welcome. That means bring your own booze if you want it!

For more information, you can follow the Codfish Hollow Facebook page, and the Facebook event invitation.

To order tickets for Bern in the Barn, you can go to the Eventbrite ticket ordering page— tickets are $18 in advance and $22 at the day of the show.

(Upcoming Release) New Calexico Tour-Only Release : Anceinne Belgique Vol 2

John Convertino of Calexico holding the vinyl LP of the new Ancienne Belgique Volume 2

John Convertino of Calexico holding the vinyl LP of the new Ancienne Belgique Vol 2

This morning via their Facebook Page, Calexico announced that they will be selling CD’s and vinyl of a new tour-only live release titled Anceinne Belgique Vol 2. 

Hey Everyone we have a new tour only album for sale. It’s a live recording from the Ancienne Belgique in Brussels this past September 2012 featuring new songs off of the album “Algiers” as well as some old songs too. Mixed by Craig Schumacher and mastered by Jim Blackwood, it is available on CD and as a double LP on vinyl. Here’s John with a copy hot off the press. We have copies on tour.

This is volume 2, because Calexico released the first album back in 2009 of their October 2008 show, which was also a tour-only release. I wrote about it here. The first volume also got a vinyl treatment in the amazing Road Atlas Box Set of their previously CD-only tour releases. That box is out-of-print and really scarce. I wrote about the Road Atlas Box here, and made a nifty 32-minute mix of tracks from it as a freely-downloadable mp3.

The band will have copies with them on tour— currently underway in Europe and running until March 3rd. In response to all of the people commenting on the post that they wanted to buy it and couldn’t see them on their current tour of Europe, they said that they will have copies in the band’s website store “hopefully soon.” The band helpfully provided me with the tracklisting:

01. Epic
02. Splitter
03. Para
04. Dead Moon
05. El Picador
06. Sinner in the Sea
07. No Te Vayas
08. Maybe on Monday
09. Corona
10. Hush
11. Close Behind
12. Puerto
13. The Vanishing Mind
14. Güero Canelo

 

(Upcoming Show) Pieta Brown and the Sawdust Collective Live at CSPS Friday 1/18/13 – Boulevard & Wires Photograph Exhibition This Week

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Pieta Brown is kicking of the 2013 year of shows with a return to CSPS on Friday, January 18th. She’s bringing with her The Sawdust Collective which is her regular collaborators Bo Ramsey on guitars and backing vocals and Jon Penner on bass. The last time I saw Pieta at CSPS was during the Acoustic Cafe show in January of last year along with Kelly Joe Phelps and Carrie Rodriguez (my pictures here).

Since then, both Pieta and Bo contributed songs to the Iowa City Song Project album– a local-artists tribute to the Englert in celebration of the venue’s 100th birthday. I wrote a review of that album for Little Village back in October. You can check out her contribution “Doesn’t Take Long” here:

Martina by Pieta Brown

Martina by Pieta Brown

Boulevard & Wires by Pieta Brown

Pieta also lent a hand with Greg Brown’s new album Hymns to What Is Left and Iris DeMent’s new album Sing the Delta. Pieta also contributed the photographs for the cover art of both albums. These photographs will be part of an exhibit of photographs that will be opened in conjunction with the show Friday night. Titled Boulevard & Wires, it’s a selection of shots she’s taken on the road that she shows on her Blue Streak section of her website. “The communion takes place in just a blink, no flash,” she says.  “The simple process lends itself to chasing the gritty and mysterious essence of any given moment.” The exhibition will be in the Commons Gallery and will continue through February 28th– admission to the exhibit is free.
The performance on Friday night will start at 8PM and will be $17 in advance and $21 at the door.

Information on the Legion Arts Website HERE for the performance, and HERE for the gallery exhibition.

It Feels Like the Third Time Again as Freakwater Reunites for a 20th Anniversary Tour

Freakwater

2012 was a year marked with vinyl re-releases from the seminal Thrill Jockey catalog in celebration of 20 years– Tortoise, Sea and Cake, Fiery Furnaces, Califone. In among the releases was a a reissue of a record that many consider to be the beginnings of what we know to be the Americana movement today– Feels Like the Third Time by Freakwater. Thrill Jockey reissued Freakwater’s 1993 third album (and first for the label) on Record Store Day and in 2013 it celebrates its 20th anniversary.

In celebration of this landmark occasion, Janet Beveridge Bean, Catherine Irwin and Dave Gay will be doing a whirlwind tour of shows. Joining them will be James Elkington of The Zincs and Horses Ha (that he is in with Bean). Regarding this tour in support of a 20 year old album Bean said, “We have found a lot of our fans were having babies round the time the record came out and those babies were forced to listen to Freakwater more than any baby should. It turns out those babies, now the record buying public, have some sort of DNA thing going where they gotta hear the Freakwater. So really we’re doing this for the kids.”

It seems that everyone is talking about this upcoming “reunion” tour of Fleetwood Mac (why is it a reunion tour?? Didn’t they just tour?), but the real reunion tour to catch in 2013 is Freakwater. Oh, and bring your kids.

FREAKWATER TOUR DATES 2013
FEELS LIKE THE THIRD TIME 20th ANNIVERSARY TOUR
January 11 The Ninth Ward, Buffalo NY
January 12 The Haunt, Ithaca NY
January 13 Johnny D’s, Somerville MA
January 14 Narrows Center for the Arts, Falls River MA
January 15 The Bell House, Brooklyn NY
January 16 DC9 Washington DC
January 17 Club Cafe, Pittsburgh PA
January 18 Beachland Tavern, Cleveland OH
January 19 Stuart’s Opera House, Nelsonville OH
January 21 The Hideout, Chicago IL
January 23 Private House Party
January 24 Headliners, Louisville KY
Freakwater Fan Page
Freakwater Facebook Page (the real one– you should really click “Like”)
Freakwater Thrill Jockey Page

 

Power Pop Descends Upon CSPS in the Form of Chicago Rocker Dick Prall

Well, it’s been a pretty great week for acts at CSPS! The Duncan Sheik show on Thursday night was pretty damn amazing, and I found a couple of acts I want to keep an eye on– that new Alpha Rev album coming out next year will be one that I’m looking forward to.

Tonight the big stage at CSPS will be graced by Dick Prall who used to live in Iowa, but now crafts his Brit Pop-influenced Midwestern Rock from the Windy City. He’s put out a solid run of pop rock masterpieces since his first release Somewhere About Here in 1998.

This year he is kicking off a new project that is a little different than his standard album releases. He is working with Pat Sansone of Wilco and The Autumn Defense to release a series of digital singles which will culminate in a full release with bonus material next year. In an e-mail exchange with Prall he said, “We’re trying a different methodology this time around to hopefully keep folks interested and engaged on a monthly basis – that’s the theory, anyway. All the songs are being done with Pat Sansone, who digs the idea, so I’m in good company.”

If the first single “Wanted Blue” is any indication, it will be one for the “Best of” list for 2013! Prall also said that they are considering vinyl for this release! Listen for yourself and download:

Dick is bringing a band with him tonight that he describes as “drums, bass, violin, & hollow-bodied guitar put together in a sort of laid-back Buddy Holly & the Crickets meets Elvis Costello backed by Spoon sort of way.” Sounds like my kind of lineup!

The show is at 8PM at CSPS, and tickets are $17 in advance and $21 at the door. The opener is Stolen Silver. Details at the LegionArts.org site.

Listen to Dick Prall’s acoustic session on Daytrotter.com (it’s a free trial if you don’t have a subscription)

Here are upcoming shows (from dickprall.com)

Duncan Sheik Returns to CSPS Thursday 11/15 With Sunset Sessions Lineup

Holly, Gerry & Duncan

Duncan Sheik is making a return to Cedar Rapids tomorrow night. He is making a stop in the area as part of the Sunset Sessions Live tour and also in support of the fact that his Tony and Grammy winning musical Spring Awakening is going to be put on by U of I Arts. Sheik is going to speak at the UI Theatre from Noon to 1 and then he’s performing at CSPS at 7PM along with Austin band Alpha Rev and New Jersey singer/songwriter Laura Warshauer.

I saw Duncan in 2009 at CSPS when he came through Iowa in support of his Whisper House album. He apparently likes to tour with an ensemble– as in 2009, he’s bringing other bands with him. This tour is sponsored by The Sunset Sessions which is an organization that puts on events which are specifically designed to draw together musicians with radio programmers and music supervisors (the people who put your new favorite songs into TV shows, movies, advertising and video games). These days, music supervisors are up there as the leading tastemakers (next to music blogs, ‘natch 🙂 ). This tour is designed as a showcase for some bands that have been featured in these events, so we get to hear some new music from Duncan Sheik, as well as Alpha Rev (who has music all over TV on VH1, Bravo, ABC, The CW as well as film, and Laura Warshauer (who has been recently signed to Def Jam/Island).

Duncan is touring in support of his latest album, Covers 80’s Remixed, which, as the title implies, is a remix album of his 2011 release Covers 80’s, which has him delivering interpretations of his favorite songs from bands like Japan, Psychedelic Furs, The Smiths, The Cure and Tears for Fears.

This promises to be a pretty spectacular evening, frankly– some up-and-coming acts coupled with some 80’s nostalgia delivered from a great songwriter. It can’t miss.

Duncan Sheik, Alpha Rev and Laura Warshauer will hit the CSPS big stage at 7PM. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Details at the Legion Arts Website.

HERE is the Facebook Event for the show.

Landfall Festival Alumni Ani Cordero Brings Her Band Back to CSPS on Saturday 10/6

A Young Fan Watches Ani Cordero at Landfall Music Festival
One of the great things about Legion Arts is their annual Landfall Music Festival. They manage to fill their stages some of the best world music acts touring the nation. Back in 2010, I had the opportunity to catch one artist that really captured my heart with her boisterous Latin-infused pop, folk and rock.

Ani Cordero has a really colorful history in the music business. In addition to recording a few solo albums as bilingual band Cordero, she has also been a member of Man or Astroman?’s associated band the Gamma Clones and as a founding member of Pistolera. Since 2010, she has been working on her most personal work to date with Sergio Dias of Os Mutantes. Titled Recordar, the self-released album is comprised of covers of songs that were part of the Nueva Cancion movement. Including songs from Latin activists and musicians such as Victor Jara and Violeta Parra the album exhibits the inspiration she found in the movement from her friend and mentor Dr. Juan Allende, nephew of Chilean President, Salvador Allende, who was overthrown in a military coup d’état in 1973.

The album is clearly a labor of love for Ani, and the effort pays off. She tapped in some friends with great musical pedigree to help bring the beautiful recording to fruition: Charles Giordano of The E Street Band, Kelly Pratt from Arcade Fire and Beirut, percussionist for Malian musician Vieux Farke Toure, Tim Keiper, long-time associate of Wynton Marsalis, Omar Akil Little, who also collaborates with world-renowned producer Lee Scratch Perry, and Brent Arnold of Modest Mouse. The album is a fitting tribute to the songs she chose as she delivers the emotion and passion of the songs as if they were her own.

On Saturday night Ani will be bringing the six-piece band she is touring though the midwest to CSPS in Cedar Rapids! When Ani and band played at the 2010 Landfall Festival, some of the crowd in Green Square Park got up and danced– maybe she can coax the usually reserved crowd at CSPS to get up, too?

The show will be this Saturday night, October 6th at 8PM. Tickets are $14 in advance and $18 at the door. For more information and how to order tickets visit the Legion Arts Website.

Here is the Facebook Event for the show.

Here is some video I shot of Ani and band at the Landfall Music Festival in 2010:

Codfish Hollow Presents… A Democratic Barnstormer featuring Pieta Brown and David Zollo 10/6/12

 

Anyone who knows Tiff Biehl knows that she is a Democratic Activist of the first order. You might not know it to see her roaming the barn making sure everything is in working order during the magical Daytrotter Barnstormer shows that have taken place at their wonderful live music barn venue called Codfish Hollow just outside Maquoketa, IA. These shows have included bands like Dawes (twice), The Walkmen, Local Natives, Delta Spirit, and many others, culminating in an amazing show with Counting Crows this year on the 4th of July.

But, before Tiff had car vanity license plates that said BARNSTRM, she had plates that said OBAMA.

She decided that she wanted to bring her skills pulling together these Barnstormer shows with her passion for the Liberal agenda of the Democratic Party. So, we get another Barnstormer show at Codfish Hollow– specifically to raise money for Iowa House representative Tom Schueller (District 58) and Former Governor Vilsack’s wife Christie Vilsack (running against US Congressman Steve King in District 4) Also to help register the youth vote and Stand with Women and the LGBT community. An amazing example of a grassroots approach to making change.

A lineup was quickly gathered that should prove to make this another in a series of historic shows. Heading the lineup is Eastern Iowa artist Pieta Brown, who is said to be pulling together a band specifically for this show, joining her on the bill is another Eastern Iowa legend David Zollo. Along side them will be six other bands: The Blackberry Bushes Stringband, Subatlantic, Barnstormer triple alumni Brooks Strause, Fire Sale, River Glen Trio, Nate Gordon & Jay VonBruchhaeuser.

In addition to this impressive lineup of bands will be craft vendors, the old farm house will be open as an art gallery, plus the regular features of Codfish Hollow shows like hayrides from the parking lot, fire rings, and lots of great food. Congressman Bruce Braley will be speaking at 7PM as well.

The event will start at 2PM on Saturday, October 6th at 2PM and will run until the music runs out. Tickets are $25 until Midnight Friday night and $35 the day of the show. Children under 14 get in free. You can get your tickets HERE, or Melodie Schueller (563-357-0080) or from Tiff , from Osterhaus Pharmacy in Maquoketa, or at the Democratic Headquarters on Main street in Maquoketa!

RSVP to the event at Facebook HERE.

(Upcoming Show) Nellie McKay at CSPS in Cedar Rapids on 9/27

Nellie McKay
It’s difficult to summarize Nellie McKay’s very diverse career. Since the release of her first double album Get Away From Me– which is how I first heard her- she’s released four more albums, had a painful breakup with her record label, starred on Broadway, acted in a couple of films, and generally exhibited her resistance to staying in any one place for very long. Irrepressible, unsinkable, unbelievable Nellie McKay.

When I saw her in 2008 at The Dakota in Minneapolis with my wife and daughter (where the above picture was taken) she stayed primarily at the piano with a few ukelele tunes and performed a few songs from a proposed politically-themed musical that I’m not sure was ever produced.

So, when I heard that she was coming to our wonderful CSPS Hall, I was very excited to see her again– she draws from a very rich palate and Cedar Rapids will be guaranteed a very unpredictable and rich musical experience. Not to be missed, frankly.

The show will be at 7PM, and tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door. Visit the Legion Arts website for more details.

And, if Nellie’s flight gets in on time, she’ll be doing an interview with Gordon Paulsen on KCCK at approximately 4:20PM. Tune in on the radio at 88.3 FM in Cedar Rapids, or online at KCCK.org.

While you’re at it, you should check out Nellie’s Daytrotter.com session!

 

 

The Pines at CSPS Tonight! New Video for “All The While” (Friday, 9/7/2012)

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I think Cedar Rapids is getting a little spoiled! Red House Records band The Pines is back at CSPS tonight for the third time since it reopened in 2011!  For the show in February the audience was graced with a surprise guest– Benson Ramsey’s dad Bo Ramsey!
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Whether or not Bo will make a surprise visit again tonight remains to be seen, but either way The Pines are a band not to be missed and the beautifully remodeled CSPS are the perfect location to see them. Be sure to grab the Pines’ latest album Dark So Gold which was recently pressed in vinyl!

The show will be at 8PM at CSPS with the doors probably at 7PM. Tickets are $14 in advance and $17 at the door. For more information visit CSPS website.

The Pines also recently released their second video from Dark So Gold. Produced by Jonathan Chapman.

Also– you should check out the latest Daytrotter.com session from The Pines–

Click Here

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