What’s happening with Rob Wasserman

Shortly before he makes his way to Europe with Lou Reed for the BERLIN project, I had an opportunity to talk with Rob Wasserman about what has been going on recently and to see if there might be a look into some sounds to come. Known by many for his Grammy award winning album Duets, his creative partnerships with many great artists from Reed and Elvis Costello to members of the Grateful Dead family including Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir, Rob is getting a chance these days to make some music for himself and has actually shared some of that to premier on greenarrowradio. It is a pleasure to hear someone speak so naturally about the bass and the approach to creating new sounds without ever compromising the integrity of the music. In this conversation, there is an inside look at who Rob is working with these days and where he stands in his efforts to put together a special album with DVD documentary, the Woody Guthrie Project has been an on-going effort for Rob and we find out where that project stands today. I want to thank Clare , Sara and of course Rob for taking the time to speak with me and bring brand new (and wildly hot) music for my listeners and their open minds and thirsty earholes. So stay tuned to WHUS and greenarrowradio for more of this previously unreleased and fresh music.

Check out our Conversation here.

rwasserman.jpg

Stratospheerius’ Joe Deninzon

Lead by electric violinist/vocalist/mandolinist Joe Deninzon, Stratospheerius unleash their fourth collection of songs. Hot on the heals of their acclaimed CD, “Live Wires“, “Headspace” brings their live energy into the studio. Vocal rock anthems like “New Material, “Old Ghosts“, and “Today is Tomorrow“, shout alongside some ripping instrumentals. From the bluegrass punk of “Gutterpunk Blues“, to the psychedelic roller coaster ride of “Mental Floss“, and the bigger and louder sequel to the Heavy Metal Hora “Heavy Shtettle II“. The disc also features a unique cover of The PoliceDriven to Tears“. This album is filled with memorable hooks alongside the ‘without a net’ instrumental jams the group has built its reputation on. Influences range from the Mahavishnu Project, Mr. Frank Zappa and the mighty Zeppelin, to Dave Matthews, Radiohead, Jeff Beck, and Bela Fleck.
I had the chance to chat with Joe to discuss the new album, the strangest billings he’s been a part of and….well just LISTEN TO OUR CONVERSATION HERE.

headspaces.jpg
with thanks to Anne at LeightonMedia

Re-Visiting with Pedro Arevalo

Our good friend Pedro Arevalo will be visiting the area with Dickey Betts and Great Southern May 24-27 at the Ridgefield Playhouse and the Mohegan Sun Casino. I look forward to bringing you fine open minded and thirsty earholed listeners a first hand review of one of these shows, but strongly suggest you get out there yourself and get a feel for this rockin’ live show! In our visit, we talk about what has been going on in the last year, side projects and there are some real clear hints of some new, unheard recordings coming home with me to be spun just for you all…..stay tuned for the goods.

Pedro Arevalo and MisterG catching up here.

pedroa.jpg
Pedro Arevalo

Tony Tyler MORE!!!!

Music Matters Entertainment and Jamland Productions presents an evening with Wet Willie, with opening act the Tony Tyler Trance, on Saturday, April 7 at Club 29 in Decatur, GA. This is the full Wet Willie lineup, including founding members Jimmy & Jack Hall! Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see these icons of Southern Rock. Jack Hall of Wet Willie has recently joined Alabama blues greats Mojo:Saint. I’m pleased to announce that Mojo:Saint has just been added to the lineup, and will go on at 8:30. I had the chance to record another conversation with Tony Tyler, who about a year ago was just getting it all started and I believe you will see what I mean when I say “My how he has grown”. As the opportunities get more and more, Tony seems to have a good grip on where he wants to be and what he needs to do. We discuss the above mentioned show, a little on the new album and as always some fun banter.

Listen to Tony Tyler conversation here.

ttevent.jpg

Melvin Sparks-A FUNKY Good Time.

The night was set..there was a very nice crowd at the Main Pub in Manchester, CT. Melvin was in rare form I thought. You know, it is always good but there was this medley at the end of the night that just blew the house down. A Parliament and P-Funk type jam ensued out of the fog, and I know my head is still spinning from this funkin’ good time. We had real serious dancing grooves going on, sexy mamas out there shaking their booties and there was even a couple of your favorite WHUS DJ’s spotted in the crowd AND on the dance floor. In this conversation, Melvin tells a tale revolving around his first on stage experience with the late/great Mister James Brown.

Check out our chat right here: you dig.

melvin 004.jpg
Melvin and G right before the show.

What’s new w/J.J. Grey & Mofro?

I took some time recently to catch up with our friend J.J Grey of the Florida based group Mofro. The new album is doing well and the first leg of the tour has been reportedly “blowing J.J. away”. The fans have been ready for a new album and there should be no disappointment when the get through listening to COUNTRY GHETTO. This album has some noticeable differences throughout and is still, like the others filled with solid songwriting, thoughtful care and flare and possibly an album like no other. But, check out our quick catch up session and get it from the man himself. I’d like to thank J.J and Megan from Madison House Publicity for helping make this happen once again.

Check out our Catch Up Session here.

countryghetto.jpg

A Keller Williams Conversation

Check out my conversation with Keller Williams. The usual one man band has some rather impressive friends on his new album DREAM. We talk about the album, the dog and so much more that you won’t want to miss out. A little background: Singer, songwriter, & guitarist Keller Williams is literally a one-man jam band. His fascinating live shows feature him solo on-stage with a Gibson Echoplex Digital Pro looping unit, and he creates his backing loops in the moment, building and improvising as he goes on his custom-made ten-string guitar, and thanks to his equally as quirky, upbeat, & semi-surreal songs (which he frequently weaves into extended, half-improvised medleys) and his warm, friendly tenor singing voice, Williams is an utterly unique performer whose musical eccentricities don’t keep him from being immediately accessible. This is easy to tell from our chat.

Enjoy our conversation here.

keller_williams.jpg

What’s cookin’ with Robert Cray?

In my brief conversation with Mr. Cray, we discuss his brand new release, LIVE FROM ACROSS THE POND. The Robert Cray Band’s first ever live release. It is a fantastic double cd set that will give any listener a look into a live show from start to finish. Learn why they decided to finally put a live release together and when the group will be opening up for Eric Clapton next. The Robert Cray Band will be playing live January 12th at the Garde Arts Center in New London CT, and again on January 17th at the Ridgefield Playhouse.

Listen to our conversation here.

claptonfinale.jpg
Robert Cray with Friends E.Clapton/Derek Trucks etc..

Buddy Guy’s BOX SET, Can’t Quit the Blues

Robert Cray says that Buddy Guy’s guitar solos sound like laughter from space, but they can also peal like the cries of lost souls attempting to cross the River Styx. If these 47 songs on three CDs plus a DVD boasting a new 75-minute documentary and six performances from the Montreux Jazz Festival prove anything, it’s that Guy is one of the most dynamic, diverse, expressionistic, and emotional guitarists–in any genre. The set neatly examines the 70-year-old Chicago blues legend’s half-century career, starting with a ragged but soulful “The Way You Been Treating Me” cut in 1957 at a radio station in Guy’s native Louisiana that finds him developing his searing, exploratory style. A year later, he’s in Chicago working with tunesmith Willie Dixon, and the rest is history (chronicled in Anthony DeCurtis’s excellent lines notes) that leads from the glory days of Chess Records to Guy’s early breakout recordings for Vanguard to his modern-day mastery. The most recent recordings often find him working with acolytes: Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Keb’ Mo’, Jonny Lang, Bonnie Raitt, Keith Richards, and John Mayer (who duets with Guy on the unreleased “I’d Rather Be Blind, Crippled & Crazy“). B.B. King, who along with Guitar Slim was Guy’s most important early influence, also joins Clapton and Guy on a stirring acoustic version of John Lee Hooker’sCrawlin’ Kingsnake.” This set shows that Mr. Guy is always growing as a musician–not only as a player whose frenzy, improvisational instincts, and tonal control keep stretching with age, but as a stylist who was unafraid to put aside his trademark electric approach in 2003 to make the acoustic Blues Singer/primal North Mississippi juke joint music part of his gig.

Listen to my chat w/Mr. Buddy Guy here.

buddyguy.jpg

Bo Diddley..Bo Knows how he feels.

This conversation will prove that. Bo Diddley knows how to rock and roll, he knows how to entertain an audience, but I learned that he also likes to talk about the things that are going on. Who better than Bo to talk about how things look from a perspective he has gained just weeks short of his 78th Birthday. Bo Diddley will be at the Mohegan Sun on Sunday December 17th. If you have never had the opportunity to see him live, this is a great time to catch him as he’ll mention in this chat, he is workin’ on some new stuff, always adding new ingredients to his musical pie.

HEAR BO DIDDLEY’s THOUGHTS HERE.

bo2.gif

11-25 Melvin Sparks Hangin’ out.

Not only was Melvin hanging out and chatting about a couple of projects, he is also going to be at the Main Pub in Manchester on Dec 2. This is a mix of our chats on Thursday and Saturday with a couple of hints of some groove. If you have never seen Melvin live, you’ve got to go and check this out. See you there.

LISTEN TO OUR CHATS HERE.

The Show looked like this. I think I got caught up in the Thanksgiving sentiment as I went back to some roots that have obviously branched out over the years. It went like this:

Listen to me, Pat Boyack
Too old is Getting Younger everyday, Watermelon Slim
She’s Gone, Hound Dog Taylor
Instrument of Pleasure, Jeff Chaz
Samson and Delilah, Blind Gary Davis
Something you got, BB King/Koko Taylor
Little by Little, BB King/Lowell Fulson
2:19, John Hammond
‘Til the Money Runs out, John Hammond
Big Black Mariah, John Hammond
Cold Cold Ground, Tom Waits
Mama Roux, Dr. John
Goin’ back to N.O., Dr. John/Neville Brothers
Home Movies, the Jamie McLean band
Get out of my Life, Jerry Garcia Band
Georgia on my Mind, Willie Pooch
Little Bag (in search of), Chris Spies
Groove on Up, Melvin Sparks
***Melvin Sparks Conversation***
She’s a Bad Mama Jama, Melvin Sparks
House Party, Javon Jackson
Freak, Sugarbitch
Chingiz, Banco De Gaia
Boys-n-Berry, the Cubby Creatures
DIY, Ext Clov
You’re my Girl, Neil Young
Baby I love you, Aretha Franklin
Stray Cat Blues, the Rolling Stones
Highway Song, Hot Tuna
Midnight Blues, the Allman Brothers
Baghdad Blues, the Microscopic Septet
Dirty Drawers, Vassar Clements
Green Onions, Vassar Clements
Little Miss Strange, Jimi Hendrix
Make me Know it, Elvis
Dirty Dirty Feeling, Elvis
Such a Night, Elvis
Evangeline, Jerry Garcia Band

MelvinSparks01.jpg

What are you doing November 18th?

Why don’t you head on down to the Main Pub in Manchester CT and catch the Jamie McLean Band, that’s right the Jamie McLean formerly of Dirty Dozen Brass Band. While the Dirty Dozen groove is infectious & timeless, the sideman guitar slinger slot holds it’s limitations. Having always been a songwriter, singer and front man, Jamie began to focus on his roots and in the early part of 2004 he formed his own group the Jamie McLean Band. Over the past year and a half Jamie’s songwriting, filled with catchy hooks, beautiful lyrics and scorching guitar work has mingled with the soulful gumbo of the deep south and while The Jamie McLean Band is based in New York City, the influences of southern rock, blues, R&B and funk is unmistakable. Jamie McLean Band will be touring in support of This Time Around throughout the year. We are fortunate to get them on November 18th. Look for their entertaining and energized sets throughout the Northeast and across the country this year both on their own and supporting national artists.

CLICK HERE FOR JAMIE AND G TALKING ABOUT THE BAND.

mclean.jpg

Always a work in progress: Tom Rush

Tom Rush is a gifted musician and performer, whose shows offer a musical celebration…a journey into the tradition and spectrum of what music has been, can be, and will become. His distinctive guitar style, wry humor and warm, expressive voice have made him both a legend and a lure to audiences around the world. His shows are filled with the rib-aching laughter of terrific story-telling, the sweet melancholy of ballads and the passion of gritty blues. Rush’s impact on the American music scene has been profound. He helped shape the folk revival in the ’60s and the renaissance of the ’80s and ’90s, his music having left its stamp on generations of artists. James Taylor told Rolling Stone, “Tom was not only one of my early heroes, but also one of my main influences.” Country music star Garth Brooks has credited Rush with being one of his top five musical influences. Rush has long championed emerging artists. His early recordings introduced the world to the work of Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne and James Taylor, and in more recent years his Club 47 concerts have brought artists such as Nanci Griffith and Shawn Colvin to wider audiences when they were just beginning to build their own reputations. Tom will be singing, playing, and story telling October 6th at the Riverside in Danielson. This is a must see event.

Take a listen HERE to our conversation.

tomrush.jpg

Music Innovator, Mr. Richie Havens

Havens first rose to fame in the Greenwich Village folk music scene that also fostered Joan Baez and Bob Dylan. In 1967 Havens became one of several Village-based artists signed to Verve Records & released several albums to mostly local notice. In 1969, Havens opened the Woodstock Festival. His performance received continuous ovations and kept playing encores until he ran out of songs. Finally, he decided to improvise a version of “Motherless Child” to which he added a verse with the word “Freedom” repeated over and over; this song was featured in the Woodstock film fastly becoming an international hit. He followed up this success with the 1971 release of Alarm Clock, which featured a popular rendition of George Harrison’sHere Comes the Sun“. Often noted for his guitar skill; some of his recordings feature a drum sound which is actually his foot tapping on the floor. His guitar playing makes extensive use of open tunings and an unconventional thumb-fretting style. John Lennon said about Richie Havens during an interview for Rolling Stone in 1971: “He plays a pretty funky guitar.” Still maintaining his status as a folk icon, as he continues a busy schedule touring the globe with fiery performances. Connecticut welcomes Richie to the Strawberry Park Folk Festival in Preston, CT on September, 15th.

Listen to what Richie has to say here, and go see him play.

richie.jpg

Let’s talk with Little Steven….Yeah, REALLY!!

Who else but Little Steven can bring a Rolling Rock and Roll Show, that’ll simply blow your minds and eyes and Thirsty Earholes Away. Coming on Sept 19th to Foxwoods Casino, get yourselves ready for a show that beats ’em all. The Zombies, The Mooney Suzuki’s, The Woogles, and even The Downbeat 5. The show will return once a month with a new lineup. Tickets are a reasonable as can be, like this show was made for college students. So c’mon UCONN, lets fill the Foxwoods Casino up with Huskies. A little history lesson first: You may know Steve from The Sopranos (he plays Silvio Dante) or as the longtime guitarist from Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band. Now you can get to know him as the coolest DJ in the country, a proud throwback to the late-night hipster jocks of long-gone 1960s and ‘70s FM radio. He is an acclaimed record producer for artists such as Bruce Springsteen, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, Artists United Against Apartheid, Darlene Love, Lone Justice, Gary U.S. Bonds, and the Arc Angels. A gifted songwriter, he has written songs for artists including Jimmy Cliff, Southside Johnny, Gary U.S. Bonds, Brian Setzer, and Darlene Love. In addition, Steven is a well-known musician in his own right, performing as a founding member of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band as well as w ith his own band Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul. He has worked to further human rights since the early 1980’s, spearheading the hugely successful anti-apartheid Sun City project, and establishing the Solidarity Foundation in 1985 to support the sovereignty of indigenous peoples. He has been honored twice by the United Nations for his human rights achievements, and received the International Documentary Association Award for his film The Making of Sun City. Little Steven’s Underground Garage, which debuted on April 7, 2002, continues to garner rave reviews from journalists and listeners alike. The program launched with 20 affiliates and has grown to an unprecedented 140 affiliates in 200 markets across the United States and Canada. It can locally be heard on 104.7 WMOS / New London Sunday nights at 10pm,
99.1 WPLR / New Haven on Sunday mornings at 8am.

LISTEN TO STEVIE TELL YOU ABOUT THE SHOW IN HIS OWN WORDS.

LS_logo.jpg

Buddy Cage of New Riders & the Purple Sage

New Riders Steel Pedal Guitar man and I chat promoting the upcoming show at the Riverside Club in Danielson, CT. Check them out here.

Listen to our “R” Rated Conversation here.bcage.jpg

As one of the New Riders of the Purple Sage (replacing Jerry Garcia in 1971), Cage has sold over 4 million records. As an independent recording specialist, he has performed on over 10 gold & platinum records.
For Bob Dylan:
* “Blood On The Tracks”
* “Biograph”
* “Official Bootleg Tapes”
NRPS:
* “Panama Red”
* “Powerglide”
* “Home, Home On The Road”
* “Gypsy Cowboy”
Also:
* Recorded w/Grateful Dead members Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Mickey Hart & GD lyricist Robert Hunter (“Tales Of The Rum Runners”), * 4 multi-platinum albums w/Anne Murray and the partnerships and success go on. Check out more online

Melvin Sparks…talk to me Melvin.

Melvin Sparks is the Essential Guitar Player! He’s The Master Of The Groove! The Acid-Jazz Pioneer! The Originator of Soul Jazz, Old School Acid Jazz & BarbecueFunk(FUNKJAZZ). Sparks recorded seven albums of his own and played on over 100 other albums. As a session man for Blue Note and Prestige Records, Sparks laid his signature guitar work on many other musician’s albums without ever being in spotlight. It was during this time that Melvin defined the jazz-guitar sound of a generation. Melvin Sparks is still a much sought-after studio player, both new and old talents seek him out now more than ever. He continues to perform with the greats of this genre such as Leon Spencer Jr., Mike Clark and Idris Mohammed and is now breaking out his legendary guitar wizardry with many younger bands and artists such as Galactic, The Greyboy Allstars, Karl Denson’s Tiny Univers, Derek Trucks and Robert Walter’s 20th Congress. Melvin is geared up to show us all what he does better than anyone else. Groove hard and in the pocket. Melvin Sparks has perhaps the most inspiring and soul-energizing guitar chops on this planet or another. He is admired by many performers, and audiences old and young alike, but continues to be a hidden treasure for music fans worldwide. He is Soul-Jazzy and Funky to the core!

Listen to Melvin Sparks and I talk about his shows here.

sparks.jpg

Galactic’s Jeff Raines talks shop.

Galactic was born in the early ’90s, after two Washington DC punks – guitarist Jeff Raines and bassist Robert Mercurio – relocated to New Orleans and found themselves intoxicated by the sounds of the scene that nurtured The Meters, Professor Longhair, the Neville Brothers and Dr. John. Galactic has created a far-reaching canon informed by ongoing influence from a wide range of genres, including hip-hop, blues, pop, and electronica. Now, with six albums and countless landmark live shows to its credit, now, once again headed to new territory—for now, as an instrumental powerhouse. While the band has always embraced stylistic changes and relished its musical adventures, its instrumental chops have never wavered. On the road and in its own New Orleans studio, Galactic continues to reinvent itself, inspiring its ever-growing fan base with ongoing artistic evolution, synthesizing the most thrilling elements of vintage and contemporary styles to keep the party rolling. Galactic will be at Toad’s Place Friday July 21.


Listen to Jeff talk about Katrina and music.

galacticjrbw1.jpg

Welcome to the world of the 88.

With their second album, Over and Over, The 88 refute the myth that art and the three-and-a-half-minute pop song can’t get along. While the new record shares the same rollicking spirit as its predecessor, Kind of Light, it also marks a sonic leap forward for the Los Angeles-based quintet. Once word of The 88’s irrepressible harmonies and hopping pianos – not to mention Slettedahl’s warm, saturated strains – began to spread among club-goers, Light slowly found its way to radio DJs and rock critics. The band became a staple on KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic, a clearinghouse for rising indie rock outfits, world music composers and underground acts hoping to cross over into the mainstream. Ultimately, 12 of the album’s 13 cuts made the spin list at NPR’s flagship station, opening the floodgates to movie and television offers. Today, the group’s TV resume includes segments on NBC’s Extra and ABC’s The Jimmy Kimmel Show, though it’s arguably their appearance on Fox’s hit series The O.C., whose soundtrack sales have now topped 300,000 copies, that put the troupe on their younger fans’ radar. Then, last year, the live track ‘Coming Home,’ which makes its studio debut on Over and Over, landed a plum spot in the Ben Affleck comedy Surviving Christmas (2004). Meantime, amid all the fanfare, The 88 quietly earned themselves a nod as L.A. Weekly’s Best Pop/Rock outfit in the city.

I had the chance to speak with Keith Slettedahl, singer/guitarist of the band. If you haven’t check The 88 out as of yet, you must not want to have any fun.

Listen to our chat here.

the88.jpg

The chase down of Derek Trucks.

Well it isn’t as wild as it sounds. I have been attempting to have a conversation w/Derek since early March. His manager Blake and I have been working around each other’s schedule’s: I got put off because of Conan O’Brien…geez!! Finally, we get a chance and the phone lines are acting up in Storrs due to the inclement weather….So, you could be listening to just the sound of airwave fuzz or I actaully did beat down mother nature and make it happen.

Check out what the Derek Trucks Band is up to, including bracing themselves for some work with Mr. Eric Clapton.

The Derek Trucks Band has been a work in progress for over 10 years, blending jazz, rock, blues, Latin, Eastern Indian, and other world music into the sound that now defines the DTB. The band’s mission has been to assemble a group of musicians that share a passion for improvisation and musical exploration, and to develop a united musical vision by performing with this core group of players for an extended period of time. The focus of the band is on the art form itself, despite the current trend of image-driven music on the scene today. The DTB aims to create progressive roots music in an effort to move the art form forward and re establish substance over hype.

Listen to our conversation here.

Check out the Derek Trucks Band’s new CD SONGLINES

derek.jpg
thanks Blake