Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Putting Athens Back on the Map: Part 1 of the 2 part New Years Eve Episode and Ticket Giveaway

Welcome to part 1 of the New Years Eve Episode of the HAPCast. With guest host Jay Rogers we start things off with "Working Man" from The Higher Choir.  We discuss with Lowdive what kind of band they really are,why they have a Tonka, what is happening with their new album and the changes in the Athens music scene over the last 20 years.  Showtime gives us the scoop on their new album, when to or not to use the f - bomb, and why there are no hip hop shows in downtown Athens..  Pay close attention we give away two pairs of tickets for the NYE Ball at the Caledonia Lounge on December 31.  You have to listen to find out how to win the tickets.


HAPCast Episode 3 Love and Rock n Roll

One of the best parts about the music business is all the wonderfully weird, talented, kind and amazing people we are able to meet along the journey.  This, the 3rd episode of the HAPCast, I get a chance to sit down with the ever jolly, clever, and madly in love Ty Manning and Kelly Hoyle Fuller of Beauty and the Beard. Ty and Kelly talk about their rock n roll wedding at the Georgia Theatre this Thursday, December 19th. Ty breaks down his writing process and Kelly gives us the breakdown on Ty's constant storytelling, wrapping it all up with a live cut of their song "Whorible Woman".  The show opens with an old demo from Ty's days with the Barefoot Hooker Revival band "High on a Mountain" which was perfect since we had some technical difficulties and had to come up with an intro on the fly.The episode finishes up with "Everynite Drugs" by Scott Low off of his new album, "The Stories I Shouldn't Tell".


HAPCast Episode 2 From Athens to Muscle Shoals to the Blue Ridge Parkway

In the 2nd episode of the HAPCast, Handpicked Artists Presents delves into the music of Muscle Shoals with Norma Rae. Local singer, songwriter Drew Kohl plays "Oh Darlin" live, and efren and Pierce Edens and the Dirty Work make their HAPCast debut.  Tune in and enjoy the show!


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

HAPCast Episode 1 The Tip of the Iceburg

The HAPCast is the new podcast from Handpicked Artists Presents. In the first episode, the host, Erin Drello, dives right in to the local Athens music scene. John Strickland from Lullwater talks about 90's grunge and why making their new album in Seattle was so cool. The Woodgrains debut a track from their new album and discuss their show coming up with Lullwater at the 40Watt Theatre on Nov 23. Brad Lauretti from The Frontier Needs Heros out of Jacksonville,Fla stops by and lays down a track. Last but definately not least Todd White of the Wonderful Whites of Watkinsville sits down to talk about this years Turkey Ramble and the dirty pranks of Jay Rodgers. We will be giving away concert tickets and so much more. So tune in and enjoy the ride.


Saturday, November 9, 2013

No More Buffalo

                The last few nights I have been turning off the tube a little early and falling asleep with my headphones in.  As usual the music I listen to jumps from artist to artist, but it all does the same trick in the dark, taking my worries of the day from my over active mind and off I fade into the black.  Tonight, I saw a picture from a honky tonk sign in Luckenbach, Texas, with James McMurtry playing tonight and Billy Joe Shaver playing tomorrow night.  Immediately, I did just like I have every other night this week, turned off the television and put on my head phones and let Mr. McMurtry roar.  Instead of drifting off to sleep like the other nights this week, my mind went on a rampage, twisting and turning about the state of music today. With Lou Reed’s passing, Katie Perry being number one on the charts, and somehow thinking that this is all evident in my little city of Athens, Ga. Having been watching people here unwilling to pay a cover for live music with venues falling in stride, and “hickhop” videos becoming a mainstay of conversation, tonight this old rock n roll lover is having to dig deep to remember why I got into this business in the first place… Well, not really. My friend and musician, Grant Mitchell, put it straight the other day.  He said “Erin, we do what we do because we love it.”
                I have been writing about a few different subjects on a regular basis over the last few years.  However, this concept of an open and honest commentary about the music around me has been in existence for less than a year.  Since then, I have returned to the birthplace of my love for live music, and shortly after my arrival back in Athens, I teamed up with a couple of well-seasoned, highly talented, local musicians and started a booking agency.  I am convinced that the music here and in nearby southern states, being created by small, mostly unknown independent musicians is as good as music has ever been.  This was the driving force in my decision to jump further into what some folks might call the cesspool of the music business.   What would happen to these wonderful songs, if they cannot ever make it around our great nation, bouncing from stage to stage, saving those souls warn from the stress of the human existence as they once saved me? They will get bypassed by a DJ with an I pad and a pocket full of opiates, and old dogs like me will have to find another way to spend our weekend nights and that won’t be good.
                 I have had James McMurtry on shuffle for an hour or so now and “No More Buffalo” has played a couple of times.   It is to me a song about growing older, life’s adventures running out, and no more rock n roll as we know it.   Well I am getting older, the adventures are still around but with a different face and rock n roll is alive and well.  My friend was right; we do what we do because we love it. And as long as that love for that sweet music stays in my heart, I will fight the good fight to keep it alive.  After all, I owe her so much more.  Rock n roll has been the best girl I have ever known and I would be lost without her.