Category Archives: Music

Joseph Rosen

Blues Hands

Surely, Joe Rosen isn’t the first music photographer to snap a shot not of a performer’s face but of his or her hands. The difference is he continued the practice and, with a keen eye, compiled those shots into a book. Its 128 semi-glossy (more…)

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Sean McGowan

My Fair Lady

On previous releases, Denver-based McGowan has interpreted tunes by such heavyweights as Oliver Nelson, Duke Ellington, Johnny Mercer, Jimmy Van Heusen, Charlie Parker, and Rodgers and Hart. He also dedicated his Sphere album to Thelonious Monk’s repertoire and released an acoustic Thanksgiving/Christmas CD. Exploring (more…)

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Greg Renoff

Van Halen Rising

This is not just another salacious rock biography full of debauchery and drug-fueled excesses; this is the saga of European immigrants and their struggle to find the American dream. It’s also an underdog story about the courage and tenacity to believe in yourself, (more…)

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Eric Bibb and J.J. Milteau

Lead Belly's Gold
Lead Belly Lives!

The September ’15 “Check This Action” column was devoted to an impressive box-set the Smithsonian Folkways label dedicated to Lead Belly, whom Eric Bibb and J.J. Milteau honored with this CD. Lead Belly’s importance to American culture can’t be overstated. He sang against (more…)

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Doc Watson

Live At The Bottom Line
Doc In NYC

Doc Watson appeared twice at Manhattan’s Bottom Line in 2002, in March and August. With him were guitarists Jack Lawrence, who replaced Watson’s son Merle when he retired from the road in 1983 (he died in a ’85 accident) and Merle’s son Richard. (more…)

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Joe Ely

Panhandle Rambler

Joe Ely’s latest is a little more laid back than past efforts, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t showcase his usual great songwriting and storytelling. A who’s who of guitarists are featured on the 12 cuts with playing that runs from joyful to (more…)

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J.D. Simo

Let Love Show The Way

This latest shoehorns J.D. Simo’s Nashville six-string virtuosity with the soulful blues phrasing of Chicago, and the heart-pounding adrenaline of rawk. Embedded within a raucous ’60s psychedelic gumbo, Simo summons copious amounts of intensity reminiscent of the best live Cream bootlegs. This album (more…)

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David Michael Miller

Same Soil

This makes it two in a row for David Michael Miller. His Poisons Sipped was one of last year’s surprise albums, introducing us to a songwriter, guitarist, and singer who is the whole package. Same Soil builds on that with its clear (more…)

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Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen

Live In San Francisco 1971

On July 11, 1971, Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, a pioneer of country rock light years from either Gram Parsons or the Eagles, appeared on KSAN-FM in San Francisco, a performance captured on tape. Lost In The Ozone, their debut album, would (more…)

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American Man

Fans of four-barrel, huevos-to-the-wall roots rock will do well to investigate the latest from this Denver-based trio. Foregoing bass in favor of guitars and drums (à la Jon Spencer Blues Explosion), Yawpers ply their trade on the continuum between Steve Earle’s well-crafted lyrics and the (more…)

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