Thursday, April 19, 2018

Paul Rodgers’ 'Free Spirit' slated for June release

Wow, this is great news for fans of one of rock's greatest-ever vocalists...

Paul Rodgers’  'Free Spirit – Celebrating The Music of Free' slated for Friday, June 22, 2018 release 


Singer-songwriter Paul Rodgers / Photo by Christie Goodwin

Los Angeles, CA (April 19, 2018) … Paul Rodgers is returning to where it all began, by celebrating the 50th anniversary of Free. Fans fortunate enough to get a ticket to the sold-out performance at London's Royal Albert Hall (in May 2017) witnessed a truly unique event. On June 22, 2018, fans worldwide will be able to experience the magic, captured for a live recording, set to be released by Quarto Valley RecordsPaul Rodgers – Free Spirit – Celebrating The Music of Free will be available on CD/DVD, Vinyl, Blu-ray and across all digital platforms.
The 16-song collection recorded from the show includes inspired performances of rock hits like “All Right Now,” “Wishing Well,” “Fire and Water,” and many deep tracks—some of which were never performed live by the original band, such as “Love You So” and “Catch a Train.” Along with this collection, those who purchase the Blu-ray and vinyl can expect exclusive footage and bonus tracks from opening acts Jasmine Rodgers, artist and multi-instrumentalist daughter of Paul, and Deborah Bonham, rock and blues vocalist sister of Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham.

"When I went down to London in '67 I had three things in mind,” says Rodgers. “To survive, to find peace of mind, and to make music doing it. When Free came together there was a creative magic around us, something unique and different. I felt again the strength of that magic on the 2017 Free Spirit Tour. Playing the songs we wrote, I felt the love and recognition the fans have for this music. The band, the fans, and I inspired each other to create and capture these moments in time."

Beginning his iconic music career as a founding member, main songwriter, and frontman for Free, Rodgers is regarded as one of the greatest vocalists in rock history by contemporaries and fans. According to Eric Clapton, “Paul Rodgers is the real deal,” while Robert Plant says, “Paul Rodgers [is] the voice of all British voices.” Rodgers has sold over 125 million records worldwide with his legendary bands Free, Bad Company, The Firm and as a Grammy-nominated solo artist.

“We are very excited and extremely honored to be part of this historic event,” says Bruce Quarto, president of Quarto Valley Records. “This performance, perfectly captured in a variety of formats, is truly a rare event that any Paul Rodgers fan will definitely want to watch and listen to, over and over again.”

Rodgers will be performing with his solo band and a few select dates with Bad Company in the upcoming months. Starting July 18, Jeff Beck and Paul Rodgers will embark on the co-headlining Stars Align Tour, with Ann Wilson of Heart serving as the opening act, along with Deborah Bonham.

About Paul Rodgers
Growing up in the sprawling industrial North Yorkshire city of Middlesbrough, Paul Rodgers formed his first band at the ripe old age of 14. Shortly after at 18, he formed Free along with late guitarist Paul Kossoff. They gained international success with the Rodgers / Fraser smash single “All Right Now.” For almost five decades, Rodgers has been recording and performing. He has written, recorded, produced and released 30 albums and has sold 125 million records. He has received numerous awards: the prestigious Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music (other recipients include John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and Elton John), an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Teesside University, BMI’s 5 Million US Radio Plays Awarded for “All Right Now”, the Chairman’s Award from the US Music Business Association, and more. He has recorded and/or performed with Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Brian May, Sam Moore, Joe Walsh, Ann Wilson, Slash, Nils Lofgren, Charlie Watts, Bryan Adams, Buddy Guy, and others. In his remarkable career, Rodgers has fronted the bands Free, Bad Company and The Firm, and continues to have a celebrated, award-winning solo career.

About Quarto Valley Records
California-based Quarto Valley Records celebrated their fifth anniversary in 2017. Founded by tech entrepreneur Bruce Quarto, the label is dedicated to supporting and expanding the genres of rock, jazz and blues music. Passionate about supporting artists and their creative process, Quarto’s goal is to reinvent the traditional record company with a new business model that is fair and respectful to artists.

Immediate Records presents “Humble Pie On 79th Street” Limited Edition Vinyl LP

Wow, this sounds like it will be among the most prized and difficult Record Store Day releases to get on Saturday, April 21...

Immediate Records Presents “Humble Pie On 79th Street” Limited Edition Vinyl LP - A Secret Release For Record Store Day UK April 21

With Record Store Day fast approaching, you won’t find this special compilation LP by one of the UK’s most iconic bands in any store on April 21, 2018. Except one. Humble Pie On 79th Street will only be available from Pie & Vinyl.

Obvious? Or are we bucking the trend of Record Store Day in the manner that Andrew Loog Oldham, legendary founder of Immediate Records and Rolling Stones manager might have done? Or does this one-off LP celebrate the spirit of RSD more than any other release?

Inspired by the beautiful pied-piperess Katherine who led us all to Pie & Vinyl and discoveries that linked her vibrant, musical town of Portsmouth & Southsea, an amazing record store and the timeless sounds of Humble Pie to dramatic events in Southsea over 40 years ago that culminated in a truly local effort to press the LP in Portsmouth and have it on sale in Southsea for Saturday April 21.

Says Immediate Records reissue producer Rob Caiger: “Wouldn’t it be great if by doing all of this, a new fan on Record Store Day discovers Humble Pie - in Pie & Vinyl - and feels the same excitement hearing ‘Natural Born Bugie’ as I did in my own local record shop Downtown Records many years ago. There’s no better place to hear new sounds (however old…) then in a record shop - and that’s just one reason why we should celebrate Record Store Day.”

One of the first supergroups, Humble Pie formed in 1969 and soon became one of the best-loved, hardest-rocking live acts of the 1970s. In Steve Marriott, the one-time Small Faces frontman, Pie had the best showman and biggest voice in the business. Peter Frampton, ‘Face Of ‘68’ with The Herd, had a new role - guitar hero. And with hard-hitting drummer Jerry Shirley and ex-Spooky Tooth bassist Greg Ridley, Humble Pie quickly developed into a sophisticated studio unit where tough riffs, rustic rock and bursts of blissed-out late psychedelia earned the band instant chart success and critical
acclaim.

Supervised by Peter Frampton & Jerry Shirley, all songs have been newly remastered by Nick Robbins at Soundmastering and cut halfspeed by Matt Colton at Alchemy Studios. ‘79th Street Blues’ (take 7) was recorded at Olympic Studios on 3 January 1970 and mixed by Rob Keyloch at Church Walk Studios exclusively for this LP and will not appear anywhere else.

Strictly limited to 1,000 LPs pressed in Portsmouth at Vinyl Presents. On sale in Southsea on Record Store Day at Pie & Vinyl and worldwide from April 22 for one week via www.pieandvinyl.co.uk. Any remaining LPs after this period will be sold worldwide via www.immediate-records.com

Inspired by Katherine, Pie & Vinyl, Portsmouth & Southsea, Humble Pie


SIDE ONE
1. 79th Street Blues (take 7)
(previously unreleased)
2. Natural Born Bugie
3. Growing Closer
4. Silver Tongue
5. The Light Of Love
6. Ollie Ollie
7. Wrist Job
SIDE TWO
1. The Sad Bag Of Shaky Jake
(alternate version)
(previously unreleased on vinyl)
2. Stick Shift
3. Cold Lady
4. Bang!
5. Only You Can See
6. As Safe As Yesterday Is

Ringo Starr Announces Details For His 10th Annual Peace & Love Birthday Celebration July 7, 2018

Ringo Starr continues to use his birthday to put a much-deserved focus for a little more peace, love and understanding in this troubled world...

RINGO STARR ANNOUNCES DETAILS FOR HIS 10th ANNUAL
PEACE & LOVE BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION JULY 7, 2018
 
THE EVENT WILL BE IN NICE, FRANCE AND RETURNS TO HARD ROCK CAFE WHERE IT STARTED IN CHICAGO, 10 YEARS TO THE DAY FROM THE FIRST CELEBRATION HELD THERE ON JULY 7, 2008

RINGO ALSO RELEASES “GIVE MORE LOVE,” HIS NEW VIDEO FEATURING
FANS’ MESSAGES OF PEACE & LOVE
 
 
Thursday, April 19, 2018  -- On July 7, 2008, RINGO STARR joined fans, friends and family on the streets in front of Hard Rock Cafe Chicago to celebrate his birthday with a simple call to action: Inviting everyone everywhere to say, post #peaceandlove or even think “Peace & Love” at noon, their local time. Ten years later, Ringo’s dream of generating a wave of Peace & Love that spans the planet on July 7 starting at noon in New Zealand and ending at noon in Hawaii continues to unfold.  Last year saw fans in over 23 countries join the movement – from New Zealand to Antarctica, Latin America to Asia, Hawaii and more.
 
Today the recently knighted Sir Ringo Starr announced that this year he will return to Hard Rock Cafe, celebrating his birthday and joining fans in Nice France, where Ringo will be while on tour with his All Starr Band (tour dates below). In keeping with the international support the event has seen, Hard Rock Cafe will play a video message from Ringo in restaurants around the world just before Noon, inviting patrons and fans to join Ringo and generate "Peace & Love" (details for which will be listed on Ringo’s Facebook page under “Events” - and listed below - for fans around the world who want to gather).
 
In addition to Hard Rock, this year’s event is being sponsored by The David Lynch Foundation, which promotes world peace every day by teaching meditation to at risk people all over the planet. 
 
“I can’t think of a better way to celebrate my birthday, or a better gift I could ask for, then Peace & Love. I was blown away last year with how far this idea keeps spreading – we started in New Zealand, had people sending Peace & Love from Antarctica, Japan, Costa Rica, India, Russia, Brazil, Europe, London, Liverpool and Hawaii. It was so far out. So here we are 10 years later and it keeps growing. I want to thank Capitol who have hosted us the last 4 years, Hard Rock, the David Lynch Foundation and everyone for continuing to help spread Peace & Love, Ringo.”
 
In a fitting tribute to the Peace & Love movement, today Ringo is also releasing his video for “Give More Love” (the title song from his most recent, 2017 release, GIVE MORE LOVE, via UMe). Directed by Brent Carpenter, the video includes photos from fans depicting peace, love and kindness, selected from those submitted in a GIVE MORE LOVE contest.
 
 
A reminder to all who would like to participate, you don’t have to go anywhere, or say anything, you can just think "Peace & Love," anywhere you are, at work for example, or otherwise busy, and know you are still contributing Peace & Love to the moment.
 
For those wanting to gather together, locations of all participating Hard Rock Cafes will be announced soon, check Ringo's Facebook Event page for updates and details.
 

 
HISTORY OF RINGO’S ANNUAL JULY 7th PEACE & LOVE BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS:
 
2008 – Chicago, IL Hard Rock Cafe
2009 –Online campaign including in store salutes at Noon at all Hard Rock Cafes worldwide
2010 – New York City, NY: Hard Rock Cafe, Times Square
2011 – Hamburg, Germany: Hard Rock Cafe
2012 – Nashville, TN: Hard Rock Cafe
2013 – Online celebration including a video message from Ringo
2014 – Los Angeles, CA: Capitol Records Tower
2015 - Los Angeles, CA: Capitol Records Tower
2016 - Los Angeles, CA: Capitol Records Tower
2017 - Los Angeles, CA: Capitol Records Tower
 
Ringo and His All Starr Band Tour Dates:
 
Summer Tour Dates:
June 2 Borgata Casino Event Center, Atlantic City, NJ
June 6 L’Olympia, Paris, France
June 8 Holland Blues Festival, Grolloo, Netherlands
June 9 Flens Arena, Flensberg, Germany
June 10 StadPark, Hamburg, Germany
June 13 Ice Hall, Helsinki, Finland
June 15 Lunden, Horsens, Denmark
June 16 Tempodorm, Berlin, Germany
June 17 Stadhalle, Zwickau, Germany
June 19 Congress Hall, Prague, Czech Republic
June 20 Stadhalle, Vienna, Austria
June 23 Menorah Arena, Tel Aviv, Israel
June 26 St. Jordi Club, Barcelona, Spain
June 28 WiZink Center, Madrid, Spain
June 29 Coliseum, La Caruna, Spain
July 1 Bizkaia Arena BEC, Bilbao, Spain
July 4 Rockhal, Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg
July 6 Sporting Complex, Monte Carlo, Monaco
July 8 Piazza Napoleone, Lucca, Italy
July 9 Piazza Degli Scacchi, Marostica, Italy
July 11 Autorium Parco Della Musica, Cavea, Rome, Italy
 
Fall Tour Dates:
Sept 1 Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Tulsa, OK
Sept 2 Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion, Rogers, AR
Sept 3 Starlight Theatre, Kansas City, MO
Sept 5 Iowa State Center, Ames, IA
Sept 7 Fox Theater, St. Louis, MO
Sept 8 TBA, Milwaukee, WI
Sept 9 Morris Performing Arts Center, South Bend, IN
Sept 11 Fraze Pavilion, Kettering, OH
Sept 13 Radio City Music Hall, New York, NY
Sept 14 Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga, NY
Sept 15 The Toyota Oakdale Theater, Wallingford, CT
Sept 17 Wang Theater, Boston, MA
Sept 19 Heinz Hall for the Performing Arts, Pittsburgh, PA
Sept 21 Hard Rock Rocksino, Northfield Park, OH
Sept 22 The Chicago Theatre, Chicago, IL
Sept 23 Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, St Paul, MN
Sept 25 Paramount Theatre, Denver, CO
Sept 27 Humphreys, San Diego, CA
Sept 28 City National Civic, San Jose, CA
Sept 29 Greek Theatre, Los Angeles, CA

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

First Aid Kit enthralls at The Observatory

First Aid Kit's Johanna (left) and Klara Söderberg at The Observatory
in Santa Ana on Tuesday, April 17, 2018. Photo credit: Bob Steshetz
A full decade after being introduced to the world via a YouTube cover of the Fleet Foxes song "Tiger Mountain Peasant Song" in 2008, First Aid Kit stand tall alongside their illustrious influences as one of modern music's greatest Americana voices. That was made clear throughout a powerful and inspired set delivered by the Swedish folk duo  sisters Klara  (vocals, guitar) and Johanna Söderberg (vocals/bass guitar)  at The Observatory in Santa Ana, CA on Tuesday night (April 17).
Klara Söderberg at The Observatory

Backed by a drummer, pedal steel guitarist and keyboardist, First Aid Kit was coming off an outstanding appearance at Coachella on April 14, but turned around and upped the quotient with a 90-minute headlining "Localchella" appearance in Orange County courtesy of Coachellafest concert promoter Goldenvoice. This was an extended set that allowed the duo to perform a mix of early favorites, gems pulled from their latest album Ruins and even a rousing cover of a classic from Heart (another band anchored by talented sisters).
Johanna Söderberg on April 17.

Opening with "Rebel Heart" (the first track off 2018's Ruins), the shimmering sound of the Söderbergs' vocal harmonies seemed to grab and enthrall the capacity crowd in an instant. The song's first section ended with the sisters voices mirroring each other for a long and dramatic note which ended with sudden silence before the venue erupted with the audience's cheers; next was an artful and powerful instrumental build to further enhance the song.

The duo followed up that potent opener with "It's a Shame," where the siblings' singing was even more otherworldly, transcendent really.

If the amazing sound of the sisters' voices was the only weapon in their arsenal it might be difficult for First Aid Kit to pull off a full set with the magic displayed early. But to be sure, First Aid Kit's gift for writing poignant and melodic songs that span a sonic backdrop stretching from traditional country western and roots rock to contemporary indie rock as well as their strength as live performers confirmed their greatness. Icing on the cake when you consider powerful guitar solos, strobe lights and more dynamics have been a part of their burgeoning approach.

On "King of the World," keyboardist Steve Moore utilized his skills on trombone to add additional loveliness to that track. His eloquent keyboard playing shone just as artfully on "Postcard."

And so the fast-moving concert went, with First Aid Kit's front line talents as singers and musicians bolstered by the talents of a top-tier backing trio, and the energy and enthusiasm generated by the crowd (a mix of several generations to be sure, with millennial and Baby Boomers all swept up in the show).  


Among the harder alt-rock moments were the one-two punch of "The Lion's Roar" and "You Are the Problem Here," the latter an aptly-timed attack on men who commit or are complicit in sexual assaults against women. "We're finally talking about this," said Klara after the song's fiery delivery. "Girls...women, we hope you feel empowered."

Other highlights of the night came via the rhythmically-minded "My Wild Sweet Love," country-tinged rocker "Wolf" (with each of the two sisters using tambourines to further drive the song) and a wonderful countrified take on Heart's "Crazy On You" that had seemingly everyone on the floor moving to the speedy version.

A rich mix of rockers and folk-styled material in the last part of the concert included the gorgeous "Fireworks," the captivating "Emmylou" (complete with a winning a Capella singalong by everyone in the house), and an encore of the acoustic-styled "Hem of Her Dress," celebratory "Master Pretender" and haunting country-flavored "My Silver Lining."


Jade Bird performing on April 17,
2018 at The Observatory.
Opening the concert was U.K. singer-songwriter Jade Bird, who went out with her acoustic guitar and proceeded to win over the audience with her forceful personality and compelling songs. Among the memorable songs was the introspective "Furious" and set-ending folk rocker "Lottery." (You can view the official music video for "Lottery" here).
Get more information on the rising artist on her official website here.


First Aid Kit set list on April 17, 2018
Rebel Heart / It's a Shame / (a snippet of "California, Here We Come") / King of the World / Postcard / Stay Gold / The Lion's Roar / You Are the Problem Here / To Live a Life / My Wild Sweet Love / Wolf / Crazy On You (cover of a Heart song) / Fireworks / Emmylou / Nothing Has To Be True
Encore
Hem of Her Dress / Master Pretender / My Silver Lining



Note: First Aid Kit is scheduled to perform a 45-minute set at Weekend 2 of Coachella at 4:35 p.m. on the Outdoor Theatre stage on Saturday, April 21, 2018.


Review by Robert Kinsler

Photography by Bob Steshetz


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Sights and Sounds: John Mellencamp, Jim James, The Milk Carton Kids

Between my coverage related to Coachella and Record Store Day, a few notable news releases have slipped by over the last few weeks and not received the attention they deserve. So here, without further adieu...


Eagle Rock Entertainment to release John Mellencamp's 'Plain Spoken: From the Chicago Theatre' on DVD+CD, BLU-RAY+CD and digital formats on May 11, 2018



VIEW “SMALL TOWN” HERE

Pre-order Available For DVD+CD and Blu-ray+CD

“…The star's singing voice and speaking voice become an engaging duet, revealing the deeper meanings and motivations behind a great singer-songwriter's work.”
-The Los Angeles Times


“(Mellencamp) leads a stellar band through the hallmarks of his own career, while a voice speaks of the passion, excitement, triumph, and trouble of youth creates a contrast that is thrilling." - No Depression
 
New York, NY—Songwriter. Storyteller. Musician. Actor. Artist. Social Activist… These are just some words that come to mind when the name John Mellencamp is spokenOn May 11, fans will have the ability to get a deeper look at this artist when Eagle Rock Entertainment proudly presents Plain Spoken: From The Chicago Theatre on DVD+CD, Blu-ray+CD, and digital formats.

“Try to keep it as plain spoken as possible…” those are some of the first words the viewer hears in Plain Spoken: From The Chicago Theatre. A self-narrated musical journey, the film encapsulates the sound and soul of John Mellencamp. Stepping outside the boundaries of a concert film or documentary, Plain Spokenblends highly personal voice-overs from Mellencamp with live footage of him performing with his full band at the historic Chicago Theatre, just 250 miles from his native Indiana. He tells us the story of his Midwestern upbringing, the trials, turns and triumphs of his career, and his overall outlook on life while the music plays, supporting his stories. The result is the essence of John Mellencamp, delivered fully on-screen.


In addition to the full film with Mellencamp’s commentary, this audio visual release offers a “non-commentary” option (available in the Main Menu) in which viewers can watch the concert on its own. The audio visual set is completed with a component CD of concert audio. The set, which includes special guest Carlene Carter, showcases Mellencamp performing his most cherished songs. “Small Town,” “Minutes To Memories,” “Pop Singer,” “Cherry Bomb,” “Longest Days,” “Authority Song,” and “Pink Houses” are just some of the gems cherry-picked from his brilliant catalogue, as well as including songs from his most recent album Sad Clowns And Hillbillies.

With a career spanning more than 35 years, John Mellencamp has elevated his legacy from pop star to one of the most highly-respected songwriters of a generation. A member of the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame, “The Souls of the People” John Steinbeck Award, and will be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame on June 14, 2018, among many other prestigious honors.   He has achieved a total of 22 Top 40 hits in addition to earning the record for the “Most #1 tracks by a solo artist on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks” chart.

Plain Spoken: From The Chicago Theatre serves as a stunning cinematic experience that offers a welcoming, intimate glimpse into the words and wisdom of John Mellencamp.

TRACK LISTING:
  1. Lawless Times
  2. Troubled Man
  3. Minutes To Memories
  4. Small Town
  5. Stones In My Passway
  6. Pop Singer
  7. Check It Out
  8. Longest Days
  9. The Full Catastrophe
  10. My Soul's Got Wings
  11. Overture
  12. Rain On The Scarecrow
  13. Paper In Fire
  14. Authority Song
  15. Pink Houses
  16. Cherry Bomb
ABOUT JOHN MELLENCAMP
John Mellencamp’s career in music, spanning more than 35 years, has seen him transition from pop star to one of the most highly respected singer/songwriters of a generation. Mellencamp is incredibly acclaimed; a recent nominee to the Songwriters Hall of Fame, he is also member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a Grammy winner, a recipient of the John Steinbeck Award, ASCAP Foundation’s Champion Award, The Woody Guthrie Award and Americana Music Association's Lifetime Achievement Award and more recently, the Founders Award, the top honor assigned by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. He is also one of the most successful live concert performers in the world. The social activism reflected in his songs helped catalyze Farm Aid, the concert series and organization that has addressed the struggle of American family farmers for more than 25 years. John Mellencamp’s latest album, Sad Clowns & Hillbillies, featuring Carlene Carter, is his 23rd over the course of a remarkable career and was released on April 28, 2017. Sad Clowns & Hillbilliesreturns Mellencamp to the musical eclecticism that is, itself, a reflection of his wide-ranging musings on life and showcases a poet who has wisely used the years between youth and the present day to become an absolute master of songwriting and interpretation. That passion and experience resonates most beautifully in this showcase of his music. John also wrote the title song for the upcoming film, The Yellow Birds.

John continues to focus on another facet of his artistic expression: painting. His style has progressed over the years as evidenced by several gallery shows and published portfolios, and in recent years he has increased his output by completing over 100 new works. His pieces were shown in 2012 at the Tennessee State Museum in Nashville under the under the title “Nothing Like I Planned: The Art Of John Mellencamp” and, more recently at the Butler Institute of American Art in an exhibition entitled “The Paintings Of John Mellencamp.”  “The Paintings of John Mellencamp” traveled to the Museum of Art-DeLand, Florida and John’s art was showcased at the ACA Gallery in New York. The unique instrumentation of his band and his poignant songs about everyday life in the American heartland, are widely credited with being the forbearer of the Americana/No Depression genre of rural-inflected music.  An extraordinary collaboration performed by an ensemble cast of 15 actors and a four-piece live band, comprised of members of John Mellencamp’s band is The Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, a musical with music and lyrics by John Mellencamp, a libretto by author Stephen King and production by T Bone Burnett. The show is being further developed in London, though King and Mellencamp are no longer as actively involved.  Mellencamp continues his journey as the walking embodiment of heartland rock; passionate, plain-spoken, and a self-proclaimed rebel.

Jim James unveils 'Uniform Distortion'
 
MY MORNING JACKET FRONTMAN ANNOUNCES THIRD SOLO ALBUM OUT JUNE 29 VIA ATO RECORDS
 
"JUST A FOOL" PREMIERES TODAY VIA NPR'S ALL SONGS CONSIDERED
 
PRE-ORDERS AVAILABLE NOW, INCLUDING LIMITED EDITION VINYL

Flipping through the pages of The Last Whole Earth Catalogue, a resource that was in 1971 basically the internet before the internet, Jim James stumbled upon a distorted photo of "The Illuminated Man' by Duane Michals. Immediately moved by the photo, he asked for permission to to use the image as the album cover of Uniform Distortion. The first request to Michals was rejected. In hopes of changing his mind, James wrote a letter to Michals personally and was ultimately allowed to use the image. The letter, which sheds some light on the album and James current state of mind, reads in full below:
 
"hello duane- your piece "the illuminated man" was used in "the last whole earth catalogue" in 1971. i wasnt even born yet. i was born in 1978...but i found my copy of "the last whole earth catalogue" about 6 months ago in a thrift store and it blew my mind. i have been feeling increasingly overwhelmed by the speed of technology and its place in our lives and here was this beautiful book/catalogue from the past showing me me all these beautiful things and amazing images to help one learn different ways to look at the world... or "get off the grid?" funny they had no idea back then just how crazy "the grid" would get. or did they?
 
so i am trying to put down my phone... use the computer and social media less... and just focus on real life and the people i love and my art. of course i am not fully "off the grid" because i am sending you this email in hopes of you changing your mind about letting me use your image as it appeared in "the last whole earth catalogue" in 1971 because when i saw it on the page there it spoke to me so deeply of how my head feels like it is exploding with the amount of information we are forced to consume on a daily basis and how that information is so DISTORTED there is almost no longer any tangible truth. the name of my new record is "UNIFORM DISTORTION" because i feel like there is this blanket distortion on society/media and the way we gather our "news" and important information...and more and more of us are feeling lost and looking for new ways out of this distortion and back to the truth...and finding hope in places like the desert where i write this email to you now...finding hope in the land and in the water and in old books offering new ideas and most importantly in each other and love.
 
i feel like there was a reason i found "the last whole earth catalogue" and there was a reason your art spoke to me... and i really think it would speak to others who would see it exploding out at them illuminating from the record store shelf or the glow of their phone or computer screen and feel its organic mind blowing distortion connect with this new music.
 
i also like the natural "distortion" that time and the pulp of the paper meeting the ink from "the last whole earth catalogue" add to your original image and that is why i am asking your permission to use this "distorted" version of your original beautiful image.
 
i hope you are well and thanks for listening-
jim james"

 
MAY
20 - Brooklyn, NY -David Lynch's Festival of Disruption at Brooklyn Steel

JUNE
21 - Berkeley, CA - Greek Theatre Berkeley *
 
 
# # #
 
 
# # #
 
JIM JAMES
UNIFORM DISTORTION
(ATO)
Release Date: June 29, 2018
 
Tracklisting:
Just A Fool
You Get To Rome
Out Of Time
Throwback
No Secrets
Yes To Everything
No Use Waiting
All In Your Head
Better Late Than Never
Over and Over
Too Good To Be True


THE MILK CARTON KIDS UNVEIL
'ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO'
 
GRAMMY® AWARD-NOMINATED AMERICANA FAVORITE
RETURNS WITH A FULL BAND FOR THEIR NEW LP
 
EXPANSIVE NEW COLLECTION REFLECTS ON DRAMATIC CHANGES INCLUDING
A BREAK UP, A CANCER DIAGNOSIS AND NATIONAL POLITICS
 
PRODUCED BY GRAMMY® AWARD-WINNER JOE HENRY
 
EPIC "ONE MORE FOR THE ROAD" PREMIERES TODAY VIA NPR
 
UPCOMING HEADLINE TOUR BEGINS JUNE
 
ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO
ARRIVES VIA ANTI- ON FRIDAY, JUNE 29


ANTI- is proud to announce the release of ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO, the anticipated new album from 2x GRAMMY® Award-nominated acoustic band The Milk Carton Kids. The LP is available for pre-order beginning today. ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO arrives everywhere on Friday, June 29.
 
The Milk Carton Kids' fourth studio album, ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO is heralded by today's NPR premiere of the project's unprecedented centerpiece, "One More For The Road." An epic 10 minute-plus musical excursion through folk, jazz and psychedelia, the landmark track serves as a remarkable signpost of what the album has in store. "One More For The Road" is available today for individual purchase and on all streaming services.
 
 
The Milk Carton Kids - a.k.a. singer-guitarists Joey Ryan and Kenneth Pattengale - will celebrate ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO with a wide-ranging tour, including North American headlining dates beginning April 25 in Milwaukee. The schedule also includes a number of dates supporting John Prine as well as festival appearances at such summer gatherings as Pasadena, CA's Arroyo Seco Weekend (Saturday, June 23rd). For updates and ticket information, please visit www.themilkcartonkids.com.
 
THE MILK CARTON KIDS
2018 TOUR

APRIL
25 - Milwaukee, WI - Riverside Theater * -- SOLD OUT
27 - Chicago, IL - Chicago Theatre *
28 - Champaign, IL - Virginia Theatre *

JUNE
22 - Tucson, AZ - Fox Tucson Theatre
23 - Pasadena, CA - Arroyo Seco Weekend
25 - Denver, CO - Denver Botanic Gardens
26 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Commonwealth Room
29 - Solana Beach, CA - Belly Up Tavern
30 - Sacramento, CA - Crest Theatre
 
AUGUST
19 - Lyons, CO - Folks Festival
 
* Supporting John Prine


The Milk Carton Kids / photo credit: Joshua Black Wilkins
The Milk Carton Kids underwent a number of dramatic changes in the time since their last recorded outing, 2015's acclaimed MONTEREY. Ryan is now the father of two children and works as a producer on Live From Here with Chris Thile. National politics have left him feeling disoriented and mournful. Pattengale's relationship of 7 years ended, he is now producing records in Nashville, and he survived cancer - breaking a long cigarette habit in the process. Perhaps as a result, ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO is the band's most profoundly personal thus far, the evocative full band sound providing a mournful, disorienting foil for lyrical themes of mortality, loss, heartbreak and national decline.
 
"We wanted to do something new," Pattengale says. "We had been going around the country yet another time to do the duo show, going to the places we'd been before. There arose some sort of need for change."
 
"Musically we knew we were going to make the record with a bigger sonic palette," says Ryan. "It was liberating to know we didn't have to be able to carry every song with just our two guitars."
 
Having spent much the last decade affirming themselves as among contemporary folk and Americana's finest songwriters, musicians, and live performers, The Milk Carton Kids ascend to even greater heights with ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO. The band's most expansive and experimentally minded collection to date, the LP was recorded last October in the Sun Room at House of Blues Studio in Nashville, TN with GRAMMY® Award-winning producer Joe Henry (Solomon Burke, Ramblin' Jack Elliott, Carolina Chocolate Drops) and GRAMMY® Award-winning engineer Ryan Freeland (Ray Lamontagne, Bonnie Raitt). The Milk Carton Kids once again opted to push the envelope of their distinctive sound, this time crafting their first-ever LP to feature backing by other musicians. ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO sees Ryan and Pattengale joined in the studio by a truly stellar lineup of top session players, including Russ Pahl (Kacey Musgraves, Blake Shelton) on pedal steel and other guitars, bassists Paul Kowert (Punch Brothers) and Dennis Crouch (Gregg Allman, Johnny Cash), Wilco's Pat Sansone on piano, mellotron, and Hammond organ, drummer Jay Bellerose (Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, Elton John, Willie Nelson), cellist Nathaniel Smith (Sarah Jarosz, Abigail Washburn), Levon Henry (Blake Mills, Nico Muhly) on clarinet and saxophone, Live From Here with Chris Thile favorite Brittany Haas on fiddle and mandolin as well as Lindsay Lou and Logan Ledger lending additional vocals .
 
Founded in 2011, The Milk Carton Kids swiftly emerged as a major force in the continuing American folk tradition, blending ethereal, oscillating harmonies and intricate, inventive musicianship with a uniquely powerful brand of contemporary songcraft. 2013's ANTI- debut, THE ASH & CLAY, proved their national breakthrough, earning The Milk Carton Kids their first GRAMMY® Award nomination, for "Best Folk Album." A second GRAMMY® nomination for "Best American Roots Performance" followed in 2015, honoring "The City of Our Lady," from The Milk Carton Kids' acclaimed third studio album, MONTEREY.
 
The Americana Music Association Award-winners for "Best Duo/Group," The Milk Carton Kids have spent much of the past decade on tour, as international headliners, worldwide festival favorites, and special guests to such like-minded artists as Old Crow Medicine Show, Punch Brothers, Sarah Jarosz, The Lumineers, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Josh Ritter, and The Avett Brothers. Ryan and Pattengale have also made numerous high profile media appearances, including TBS' ConanCBS This Morning, and NPR Music's Tiny Desk Concerts.
 
In addition, The Milk Carton Kids have proven in-demand collaborators, including musical partnerships with Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Shovels & Rope, Chely Wright, Joe Henry, Dar Williams, and the great Chris Hillman, as well as teaming with T-Bone Burnett & Joel and Ethan Coen for the acclaimed concert documentary, Another Day, Another Time: Celebrating the Music of Inside Llewyn Davis. In 2016, the band joined forces with Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, Buddy Miller, and Robert Plant for the sold out Lampedusa: Concerts for Refugees tour.
 

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THE MILK CARTON KIDS
ALL THE THINGS THAT I DID AND ALL THE THINGS THAT I DIDN'T DO
(ANTI-)
Release Date: June 29, 2018
 
Tracklisting:
Just Look At Us Now
Nothing Is Real
Younger Years
Mourning In America
You Break My Heart
Blindness
One More For The Road
Big Time
A Sea Of Roses
Unwinnable War
I've Been Loving You
All The Things That I Did And All The Things That I Didn't Do