Music Video: Puss n Boots – Shake Yer Christmas Butt

December 17, 2014

Christmas Butt Cat

If you are tired of the repetition of holiday music (15 songs make up 50% of what’s played on holiday formatted radio), why not turn to a holiday song that was first performed last week?  Here is a video from The Puss n Boots Christmas Spectacular Take 3 at The Bell House.  The song is an original from Puss n Boots bassist Cat Popper and it’s called Shake Yer Christmas Butt.  You’ll see Norah Jones on guitar and vocals, but Sasha Dobson on the drums is off camera.  As he has done several times before, tahcofan capture Puss n Boots for us.


Best Songs of 2014 – Part 2

December 15, 2014

Here are the second five songs in the Now I’ve Heard Everything Best Songs of 2014 list; you’ll find the first part here.

Lydia Loveless Somewhwere ElseLydia Loveless – Really Want to See You: Like Jenny Lewis‘ She’s Not Me (See Part 1 of The Best Songs of 2014 here), this song is a conversation between the singer and a former lover.  But unlike Jenny, Lydia is not rueful; here she cajoles, even demands, that her ex leave his marriage and come back, even if she was a bitch before.  I know of no one who conveys emotion – here pure anguish – like Lydia does.  I know that other reviewers gravitate to other songs on Somewhere Else (the album this song comes from), but to me this is THE song on that record.

Misty Boyce The Life CoverMisty Boyce – The Life: Although The Life, the new album from Misty Boyce, will not be issued until January, this, the title track, was released as a single in November.  Here, Misty continues her move towards more of a rock sound, this time mostly drenched in keyboards.  Misty has a pretty expansive vocal range, and she show much of it here.  Add a very catchy melody and you have this winner of a song.

PussnBoots No Fools No FunPuss n Boots – GTO: I fell in love with this song years ago, the first time I heard it live, back when Puss n Boots was playing stealth shows under assumed names.  Sasha Dobson‘s strong and stunning vocal performance here is as good as any one I’ve ever heard live.  And the secret sauce on this track is the arrangement the band put together – the original doesn’t sound nearly as good as this does.

RyanAdams Self TitledRyan Adams – Gimme Something Good:  The first song of Ryan’s self titled album is a straight ahead rocker with a bit of a Tom Petty feel.  It’s also straight ahead Ryan Adams; this time he’s producing himself (with an assist from Mike Viola), so there’s no one to filter Ryan.  And what that has led to is something good!

 

Sad Bastards of Brooklyn CoverSad Bastards of Brooklyn – Here Comes A Regular:  Charlene McPherson and Mo Goldner, The Sad Bastards of Brooklyn, take this tale by The Replacements of a dissolute, somewhat self aware alcoholic and give it a stark voice and acoustic guitar treatment.  The spare arrangement, set by Eric Roscoe Ambel‘s right on the money production, makes sure that the bleak lyrics will sear you.

Click here to view Now I’ve Heard Everything’s Best Albums of 2014.


Best Albums of 2014 – Part 2

December 13, 2014

Here are the second five albums in the Now I’ve Heard Everything Best of 2014 list; you’ll find the first part here.

Jim Keller Heaven Can WaitJim Keller – Heaven Can Wait: Jim Keller is known for his soul tinged rock and his full speed ahead shows originally at The Lakeside Lounge and more recently at The Rockwood Music Hall.  Heaven Can Wait is a small departure from that; Jim said that these songs were written at 2am.  As befits something happening in those early hours, the songs on this collection are more quiet and introspective than those on Jim’s previous records.  Standouts include Cali Girl (what seems to be a scene from long ago), Crush on You and Take Me for a Ride.

Leonard Cohen Popular ProblemsLeonard Cohen – Popular Problems: Just a few days short of his 80th birthday, Leonard Cohen graced us with this new record.  While his voice has grown rougher with age, it still is the perfect vehicle for his work.  The batch of songs this time around compare admirably with Leonard’s previous ones.  Musically, the instrumentation  plus female backup singers that has worked so well with previously are here again.

PussnBoots No Fools No FunPuss n Boots – No Fools, No Fun: Puss n Boots consists of Norah Jones, Sasha Dobson and Catherine Popper.  They have been around so long that their first website was on My Space.  They’ve played small clubs in Manhattan and Brooklyn for years, and this year they finally put out a record so that those of us who have not been able to see them at their gigs can finally get to hear them.  When you get is a fine blend of originals (two each from Sasha and Cat and one from Norah) and mostly country covers, although Down By the River and Jesus, Etc., both here, can hardly be called country.  Of course, the vocals and harmonies from Norah, Sasha and Cat are all top notch as well.

RyanAdams Self TitledRyan Adams – Ryan Adams: After suffering with some health issues over the past few years, Ryan Adams is back and ready to rock.  The album’s lead off track, Gimme Something Good, is an insistent rocker which impressed David Letterman so much that he asked Ryan and band to play it twice when they appeared on Letterman’s show.  This self-titled album also has a few slower numbers mixed in with the rockers.  There is no doubt that with this album Ryan is back and ready to play again.

Sad Bastards of Brooklyn CoverSad Bastards of Brooklyn – Volume 1: For quite a while now, Charlene McPherson and Mo Goldner of the hard rocking Spanking Charlene step out of that band and play as The Sad Bastards of Brooklyn.  The idea of SBB is that Charlene and Mo will  play the most depressing songs they know.  The surprising thing is that their gigs have always been a good deal of fun.  So about a year ago, they stepped into the studio with Eric “Roscoe” Ambel producing and recorded this record of covers.  You’ll be impressed by Charlene’s voice, Mo’s acoustic guitar and the selection of songs here.  And although this record may be on the quiet side, it’s impressive, not depressing.


Tonight: Puss N Boots Christmas Spectacular Take 3 at The Bell House

December 11, 2014

Puss N Boots 1

It’s not too late to pick up a ticket and go to The Bell House tonight to see Puss n Boots (Norah Jones, Sasha Dobson and Catherine Popper, above, in a photo taken at a previous show) and their 3rd  Christmas Spectacular in four years. If you’ve picked up a copy of No Fools, No Fun, their record from earlier this year, or you’ve seen them in their stealth gigs in small local bars, you know that their material, a blend of choice covers and originals, is great, and their harmonies are just top notch.

As the title states this is a spectacular show.  PNB will be sharing their stage with burlesque star Minnie Tonka, wrestler, author, comedian, color commentator, actor, and voice actor Mick Foley (who will, at the very least, be Santa), plus a number of surprise musical guests.  This is always a fun show, so take the opportunity to get in on the fun.

Puss n Boots Christmas Spectacular Take 3, The Bell House, 149 7th Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenues, Brooklyn (F or G Trains to 4th Avenue or R Train to 9th Street), doors 7:30pm / show 8:30pm, $20


Tonight: Sasha Dobson at Cameo or The Jacks of Kings County at The Way Station

September 25, 2014

Choices Large

The choice sign is up because tonight that’s exactly what you have.  At 9:30pm in Williamsburg at Cameo Gallery (where the performance space is hidden behind a door in the back) Sasha Dobson will take the stage.  This is a busy time for Sasha.  She released a new EP, Into the Trees, this past January.  On that six song EP, Sasha used new sounds and covered such artists as Scott Walker, The Cure and Elliot Smith.  Then this summer, Puss n Boots, the band Sasha is with Norah Jones and Catherine Popper, released a new album and went on tour (that tour will pick up later this week).  Tonight, Sasha will be playing with her band – Joel Hamilton, Daria Grace and Jason Mills.

At 10pm in Prospect Heights, over at The Way Station (the bar that has a TARDIS from Dr. Who), you’ll find The Jacks of Kings County.  The Jacks play a blend of alt country, Americana and rock with tight arrangements and nice vocal harmonies.  The band plays many places in their home borough of Brooklyn, but the place to see them is at The Way Station, their home base.

Sasha Dobson, Cameo Gallery, 93 North 6th Street between Wythe Avenue and Berry Street (L Train to Bedford Avenue or G Train to Metropolitan Avenue), 9:30pm $10

The Jacks of Kings County, The Way Station, 683 Washington Avenue between Prospect Place and St. Marks Avenue (2 or 3 Train to Eastern Parkway – Brooklyn Museum or C Train to Clinton – Washington), 10pm, No Cover (but a contribution for the musicians is highly recommended)


Advance Planning: September 2014 Music Calendar

August 28, 2014

Calendar3

September will be here before we know it and so here is the monthly music calendar for September 2014.  Listings on the calendar are for venues in New York City and for bands that I can personally recommend or which I have reason to believe are worthwhile.  All shows listed here are free or have tickets which cost $40 or less. I’ve tried to list the set time for each band.  If all I have is a time when the show starts or when doors open, I’ll list that and so note it.  As usual, this calendar will be updated from time to time during the coming month.

Latest Update: Sept. 28

Sept. 1 – Tony Scherr Trio with Anton Fier and Rob Jost – Rockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Sept. 1 – Jim Campilongo with Roy Williams, David Speranza and Russ MeissnerRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Sept. 3 – Luke WesleyRockwood Stage 2 – 7pm

Sept. 3 – Misty Boyce (CD Release Show)  – Rockwood  Stage 2 – 8pm

Sept. 3 – Jesse TerryRockwood Stage 2 – 9pm

Sept. 3 – Blackie and The Rodeo KingsCity Winery – doors 6pm / show 8pm

Sept. 5 – Chris Cubeta and The Liars ClubRockwood Stage 2 – 8pm

Sept. 5 – Second DanRockwood Stage 2 – 10:15pm

Sept. 6 – Sad Bastards of BrooklynSidewalk Cafe – 8pm

Sept. 6 -Ian Hunter and The Rant Band and Wreckless Eric and Amy RigbyThe Bell House – doors 7:30pm / show 8:30pm

Sept. 6 – Ana Egge String Band – Hill Country Brooklyn – 8:30pm

Sept. 8 – Jim KellerRockwood Stage 2 – 8pm

Sept. 8 – Don Piper with Dave Schramm, James Mastro, and The Kennedys - Hi-Fi – 8pm

Sept. 8 – Tony Scherr Trio with Anton Fier and Rob Jost – Rockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Sept. 8 – Jim Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey, Josh DionRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Sept. 9 – Jim Campilongo with Gerald Menke, David Speranza and Russ Meissner – Skinny Dennis – 9pm

Sold Out! Sept. 10 – James Maddock (All-Request Show) – Rockwood Stage 3 – 7pm

Sept. 10 – Secret SomeonesStage 48 – 7:30pm

Sept. 10 – North of AmarilloSkinny Dennis – 9pm

Sept. 11 – Thomas Bryan Eaton and Hobson’s ChoiceRockwood Music Hall – Midnight

Sept. 12 – Rony’s InsomniaRockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Sept. 13 – Emily Duff BandRockwood Music Hall – 5pm

Sept. 13 – Jahn Xavier and the BowerytonesBeast Of Bourbon – 9pm

Sept. 13 – Rosie FloresHill Country NY – 10pm

Sept. 14 – Rich Hinman  – Rockwood Music Hall – 11pm

Sept. 15 – Tony Scherr Trio with Anton Fier and Rob Jost – Rockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Sept. 15 – Jim Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey, Josh DionRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Sept. 15 – Dirty Water DogsEar Inn – Midnight – 3am

Sept. 16 – Rosie FloresKnitting Factory – 8:30pm

Sept. 16 – Zephaniah and the 18 WheelersSkinny Dennis – 9pm

Sept. 17 – North of AmarilloSkinny Dennis – 9pm

Sept. 18 – Peter Case, Amy SpeaceRockwood Stage 3 – 7pm

Sept. 18 – Jonatha BrookeSubCulture - 8pm

Sept. 19 – Drina SeayThe Way Station – 9pm

Sept. 20 – Elizabeth and The CatapultRockwood Stage 2 – 7pm

Sept. 20 – The MastersonsRough Trade – 8pm

Sept. 20 – Paranoid Larry and His Imaginary BandFreddy’s – 9pm

Sept. 21 – Rony Corcos (of Rony’s Insomnia)12th Street Bar and Grill – show 8pm

Sept. 21 –  Jahn Xavier -Treehouse at 2A – 9pm

Sept. 22 – Tony Scherr Trio with Anton Fier and Rob Jost – Rockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Sept. 22 – Jim Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey, Josh DionRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Sept. 23 – The MastersonsCity Winery – doors 6pm / show 8pm

Sept. 23 – John FullbrightMusic Hall of Williamsburg – 9pm

Sept. 23 – Zephaniah and the 18 WheelersSkinny Dennis – 9pm

Sept. 24 – North of AmarilloSkinny Dennis – 9pm

Sept. 25 – Sasha DobsonCameo – show 8pm

Sept. 25 – The Jacks of Kings County – The Way Station – 10pm

Sept. 27 – Dirty Water DogsRadegast Hall – 1-4pm

Sept. 27 – James Maddock – The Cutting Room – doors 6:30pm / show 7:30pm

Sept. 27 – Bryan Dunn (Birthday show with Richard McGraw opening) – Rockwood Stage 3 – 10:30pm

Sept. 27 – Jim Campilongo and HoneyfingersBarbes – 7pm

Sept. 28 – Lydia LovelessThe Studio at Webster Hall – 7:30pm

Sept. 28 – Jim Campilongo and HoneyfingersBarbes – 8pm

Sept. 28 – Li’l Mo and The MonicatsTreehouse at 2A – 10pm

Sept. 29 – Lucinda WilliamsRough Trade – 6:30pm – Purchase the new Lucinda Williams album Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone on 9/29 starting at 11am to receive one wristband good for entry to the in-store show that evening.

Sept. 29 – The Lascivious BiddiesRockwood Music Hall – 7pm

Sept. 29 – Walter Salas-Humara with The Silos (Record Release Show), Matthew Ryan – The Bowery Electric – 7:30pm

Sept. 29 – Tony Scherr Trio with Anton Fier and Rob Jost – Rockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Sept. 29 – Jim Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey, Josh DionRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Update: Sept. 30 – Leave a Lasting Mark Presents: “Runnin’ Down A Dream: A Tribute to Tom Petty”
with many guest artists – all proceeds go directly to Team Continuum, and their 2014 NYC marathon fundraising – The Bitter End – 7-9pm

Sept. 30 – Poundcake with special guests Jon Graboff, Jason Loughlin, Scott Metzger, Boo Reiners, Scott Sharrard and Andy Stack – City Winery – doors 6pm / show 8pm

Sept. 30 – Madi DiazRough Trade – 9pm

October and Beyond

Oct. 1 – The AmygdaloidsPianos – 7pm

Oct. 1 – Ana EggeRockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Oct. 1 – North of AmarilloSkinny Dennis – 9pm

Oct. 1 – Julia Haltigan and Emmet HaltiganRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Oct. 1 – Jim Boggia and Miles Zuniga – Rockwood Stage 3 – 10pm

Oct. 2 – Nick AfricanoRockwood Stage 2 – 8pm

Oct. 2 – Julia HaltiganMercury Lounge – 9pm

Oct. 2 – Sonya KitchellRockwood Stage 3 – 10pm

Oct. 4 – Israel NashMercury Lounge – 8pm

Oct. 5 – So BrownCameo – show 7pm

Oct. 6 – Jim KellerRockwood Stage 2 – 8pm

Oct. 6 – Jim Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey, Josh DionRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Oct. 7 –  Mary Lee Kortes plays the Songs of Beulah Rowley – Rockwood Stage 2 – 7pm

Oct. 7 – Carrie RodriguezRockwood Stage 3 – 9:30pm

Oct. 7 – Rich Hinman  – Rockwood Music Hall – Midnight

Oct. 8 – Elizabeth and The CatapultRockwood Stage 2 – 7pm

Oct. 8 – Karlie Bruce – Rockwood Music Hall – 7pm

Oct. 8 – The Fauntleroys (Alejandro Escovedo, Nick Tremulis, Ivan Julian and Linda Pitmon) – Mercury Lounge – 8pm

Oct. 9 – The Fauntleroys (Alejandro Escovedo, Nick Tremulis, Ivan Julian and Linda Pitmon) – Rough Trade – doors 8pm / show 9pm

Oct. 10 – The Kennedys 20th Anniversary Show – Rockwood Stage 3 – 7:30pm

Oct. 11 – Andi Rae and The Back River Bullies, The Humdrums, and Jeff LitmanSpike Hill - 9pm

Oct. 12 – Arum Rae – Music Hall of Williamsburg – 8pm

Oct. 13 – Jim Campilongo Trio with Chris Morrissey, Josh DionRockwood Music Hall – 10pm

Oct. 16 – A Circle of Songs, hosted by Richard Barone with Eric Andersen, The Roots’  “Captain Kirk” Douglas, and Nellie McKaySubCulture – doors 7pm / show 8pm

Oct.16 – Bucky Hayes – Rockwood Music Hall – 9pm

Oct. 21 – Dan  BernThe Bell House – doors 7:30pm / show 8:30pm

Oct. 23 – John Dee Graham with Mike JuneHill Country NY – 9pm

Oct. 24 – Rony’s InsomniaThe Shrine – 8:30pm

Oct. 25 – Eddie and The Hot RodsThe Bowery Electric – show 7:30pm

Oct. 26 – David Olney with Sergio Webb – House Concert in NYC – doors 6pm / show 7pm –  click here to email for information and reservations

Oct. 27 – Laura CantrellRough Trade – doors 8pm / show 9pm

Oct. 29 – Rony’s InsomniaPianos – 8:30pm

Oct. 30 – Robbie FulksUnion Hall – doors 7:30pm / show 8:30pm

Nov. 13 – Spanking CharleneThe Bowery Electric – 7pm

Nov. 15 – Will Kimbrough with special guest Bridgette DeMeyer – House Concert in NYC – doors 7pm / show 8pm – click here to email for information and reservations

Nov. 15 – The Dream SyndicateRough Trade – doors 8pm / show 9pm

Nov. 18 – Jess Klein w/ Jessie TorrisiRockwood Stage 3 – 7pm

Nov. 21 – Chuck ProphetThe Bell House – doors 7:30pm / show 8:30pm


Music Video: Puss n Boots – Joey (Live at The Bell House)

July 26, 2014

Puss n Boots Bell House 7-15-14 4

Here’s a live video of Puss n Boots (Norah Jones, Sasha Dobson and Catherine Popper) covering Joey, the Concrete Blonde song.  Cat takes the lead vocal on this one and does a fabulous job on it.  A tip of the hat to Tahcofan, who was at The Bell House last week to capture this for posterity.


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