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by Amy Harris 09.15.2011
Posted In: Live Music, Interview at 10:42 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Q&A with Theory of a Deadman (X-Fest Preview)

Theory of a Deadman is a Hard Rock band that has made a dent in popular music with catchy hooks and sounds that appeal to the heartbroken everywhere. Together for over 10 years, they became hitmakers with their third album, Scars and Souvenirs, and the No. 1 hit “Bad Girlfriend,” along with other popular tracks like “Hate My Life” and “Not Meant to Be.” The band's fourth album, The Truth Is, was released last month and contains the hit single “Lowlife," currently lighting up airwaves on Rock and Pop stations across the country.

CityBeat recently spoke with guitarist Dave Brenner prior to Theory of a Deadman's set at the Kentucky State Fair, part of the Carnival of Madness tour. Brenner talked about the new record and hobbies on the road. Catch Theory of a Deadman and the Carnival of Madness at Dayton's X-Fest this Sunday. (Check the commercial below or visit here for details.)

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by mbreen 01.14.2011
Posted In: Local Music, Live Music at 03:15 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Loft Society Celebrates MLK, Jazz-Style

One of the coolest, more unique musical experiences to be had in Cincinnati is at the concerts presented by The Loft Society, an on-the-down-low, speakeasy-like venue housed in the top-floor loft of an apartment building on Calhoun Street in University Heights (next to Mayra’s restaurant). Programmed and hosted by Al Williams, the Loft has been featuring artists on the more exploratory side of Jazz (with occasional guests from other genres) for the past two decades. The atmosphere is relaxed and communal and set up as a great listening experience first and foremost (obnoxious chatter during performances is strongly frowned upon). If you’ve yet to visit, Saturday’s “A Tribute to MLK” concert is a great place to start.

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by Amy Harris 10.12.2012
Posted In: Live Music, Interview at 10:11 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 
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Q&A with Social Distortion's Jonny Wickersham

Classic Punk band plays Bogart's Saturday

Formed in 1978, Classic Punk band Social Distortion reached the height of its fame in the late ’80s and early ’90s. The band has seven studio albums beginning with its iconic Mommy’s Little Monster. Although there has been over a dozen ex-Social D members, the group — known as a touring juggernaut (sometimes at the expense of making new music) — has maintained a lineup that has been fairly consistent for the past decade. 

CityBeat caught up with rhythm guitarist Jonny “2 Bags” Wickersham in anticipation of Social D's current tour. The group performs at Bogart’s on Saturday (Oct. 13) night and will surely wow fans new and old.

CityBeat: I know Mike (Ness) has said in the past we won’t have to wait seven or eight years for a new Social D record. Are you guys working on new music right now? How is that coming along?

Jonny Wickersham: In a perfect situation we would love to get a record out sooner than we have been putting them out. I don’t know that it looks like it will happen real soon. We have been really busy touring the last couple of years. As far as new material there are always new songs in the works. We will work on them at sound checks and rehearsals. When it comes time to get serious to put a record together, the songs that stick in our minds are the ones that are the best stuff and they typically make the record. We will finish it up. We will see. Conceivably we can get together and start really getting serious in the beginning of next year and have a record to follow shortly after that. It has to feel right. I have always felt it is a good thing not to rush records. I know that people like to see a record come out on a certain schedule with bands, but it is also good to evolve a little bit as people and as a band in between albums.

CB: You spend most of the time as a touring band on the road. Do you ever write down the tour stories or keep mementos from the tour to remember them all?

JW: I have never been a big journal keeper or anything like that. I don’t. Certain stories definitely do stick in your mind but not really.

CB: What current music or music you are listening to right now is currently inspiring you?

JW: You know what a really great record is, the new Hot Water Music Record, have you heard that?

CB: No.

JW: I have been listening to a lot of that in my car.

CB: Good driving music?

JW: Oh yeah. It is such a great album. It really is good. I also like the Drive By Truckers a lot. I don’t listen to a lot of new music to be honest. I listen to a lot of old Blues and stuff and old Rock N Roll.

CB: From your standpoint, what are the characteristics that make a good Social D song?

JW: I would have to say a good riff and a good lyric that is poppin'. You can’t go wrong with a good lyric. You can try to stretch that a bit, not just stay with our formula as a band. We have a different division of sounds with the band. We are not trying to re-invent sound in an extreme manner or anything but it is good to try to mix it up. I am hoping in the future, in the stuff coming up, we can do that and re-visit some of the earlier stuff.

CB: We are heading into a critical election year. Ohio is a crazy place to be during this whole thing. Do you guys have any political views or support for any of the candidates?

JW: Well, I am going to vote for Obama and hope for the best.

CB: What is the worst job you have ever had?

JW: I don’t know. I had a job at the Orange County jail once a long time ago. We had to cut the bunks down from three bunks to two and carry them all out to the loading dock and get them out of the jail. Any job where you are locked up is not a great job. I had so many jobs growing up. I started working in construction fields at a really young age because where I come from that is just what you did when you got to the age of going out to get a job, try to get a construction trade. I have also worked at Carl’s Jr. and Burger King as a teenager and neither one of those jobs lasted more than a couple weeks. I have worked as a stagehand. I have worked in an Art Department building sets for film production. Those are cool jobs. I really liked the Art Department work. Any job that anybody could have at this point is a good job is kind of how I feel. I definitely never want to think I am beyond any kind of work. You never know what is going to happen in life. There are times where being able to get any job is critical for you.

CB: Do you have any scars?

JW: I have a scar on my upper leg.  When I was a little kid, me and a couple friends built this bicycle Motocross track on a dirt lot by our house in our neighborhood. We went out and worked really hard with shovels and built this really cool track and the enemy kids down the street, who were our nemesis, came over one day when we weren’t there and totally ruined our track, kicked in all our berms and jumps and trashed it. So we went down the street  where they had built this really shitty tree fort that was like three stories tall off the ground into the tree. We went up there and we started hammering at it, we brought sledgehammers over and we started bashing in their tree fort. The stupid thing on our part was that we started on the bottom and climbed up to the next level and up to the next level. We were breaking this tree fort apart and we were way up at the top and the thing collapsed. I fell and my leg got clipped up on a nail. It ripped my leg open so I have a scar. I have a bunch of other scars too.

CB: What is the last thing you do before you go to sleep?

JW: Well it depends. Turn out the television if I have been watching the television. I don’t always watch TV at night. Sometimes I do. If I am on the bus on the tour, I listen to music on my iPod. The last thing I do is turn that on and I usually fall asleep listening to a record. Then I have to wake up and pull the headphones off and fall back asleep. If I’m reading a book, close the book and turn out the light. It can be one of many different things.

 
 
by Alex L. Weber 06.10.2009
Posted In: Local Music, Live Music, Festivals at 01:15 PM | Permalink | Comments (5)
 
 
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Lineup Announced for Adjust Your Eyes Fest

An impressive and eclectic roster of local bands will transform an otherwise stark Loveland VFW hall into an artsy, flashy, sorta hippy-ish Rock ‘n’ Roll venue for this year’s third annual Adjust Your Eyes Music and Arts Festival, June 26 and 27. The two-day, two-stage, multimedia extravaganza, which is the brainchild of Grasshopper Juice labelmeister and Wonky Tonk/Chick Pimp band member Nick Mitchell, will feature not only upwards of 28 bands but also art by Jacklyn Howard and CincyStar Glass and stage lights and visualizations by Bunk News.

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by Amy Harris 10.25.2012
Posted In: Interview, Live Music at 03:25 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Q&A with Jackyl

Jesse James Dupree brings his Hard Rock (and chainsaw) back to Cincy Friday night

Jackyl is a Southern Metal band led by one of the most charismatic frontmen around, Jesse James Dupree. The band has been making the rounds since the early ’90s but have gained their biggest fame with Dupree appearing regularly on the TruTV show Full Throttle Saloon. He also has infamous for turning a chainsaw into a musical instrument. CityBeat caught up with Dupree this week to preview Jackyl's upcoming return to Cincinnati. The two discussed where Jackyl stands in today’s Rock n Roll landscape and the group's new album, Best in Show. Jackyl performs Friday night (Oct. 26) at the Inner Circle (formerly Annie's) in Cincinnati.

CityBeat: I think you are still out on tour with Nigel, your son, correct?

JD: No, Nigel is not on this date with me. I have a band called Wayland that is opening for us and they are doing really great. They are getting a good bit of airplay on 96Rock and I am proud to have them on the run with us.

CB: I have been listening to the new record Best in Show and I think “Horns Up” is my favorite song. Can you tell me a little bit about that song and how you put it together?

JD: It came about with Roman the bass player; obviously you can tell that song originates from that bass groove. Roman came in and said, “I have an idea but don’t know what to do with it though.” We basically stopped everything and we said “Let’s hear it,” because when Roman says he has something going on it is usually pretty interesting.

So we stopped everything and he started this looping, playing it round and round, and then I picked up the guitar and started grabbing the soft beats with it and choking through, and next thing you know we had a really cool groove going. So we laid that down so we wouldn’t forget what we had.

I actually got up and went for a run the next day and it was playing over in my head, and it seems like it was one of those songs that every now and then you come across something that writes itself. That one, all the parts fell together, even the gang vocals part; it has that old Sly and the Family Stone type of gang vocal, you know, “Everybody grows…”

So Roman and I got up to the microphone and did it and sounded like him. We laid down the idea and that is what ended up being on the record because it had such a natural flow to it. It was one of my favorite songs too. It has such a fun energy to it. I think our record is non-portentous in a sense. It is just a celebration of the fundamentals of Rock & Roll.

CB: I have been a Jackyl fan for a long time. I have talked to you over the years and seen the shows. Have you ever had women approach you that are offended by some of the lyrics?

JD: I really haven’t. Can I imagine that within my lyrics that I have offended lots of groups or whatever? At the end of the day, if you are analyzing the music that close, you are missing out on the essence of what it is all about.

In Rock, some of these artists are so self-righteous and self-proclaimed geniuses and Rhodes Scholars or whatever, I don’t subscribe to that. I think music is something that should move you and excite you. I think Rock music should be considered right alongside going to see a movie, whether it is a comedy or a drama or a horror movie, whatever the case may be. I think it is just an expression of a vibe and blowing off some steam. How many people work their asses off for 40 hours or more a week? I don’t think they want to stop in Rock & Roll to have other issues to be upset about. I think they dial in to something that is like going to see a great movie of a different genre. It is about an escape.

Anybody that is looking for music to cure a rare disease or something needs to be re-aligned. I’ll just tell you this, I’ll leave it to Bono and U2 to go save the world in that respect. I just want to provide some sanity for people when they blow off some steam.

CB: The Flaming Lips broke the record for the most concerts in 24 hours. Would you guys ever try to do that again?

JD: The record, if you look at it, the record they broke is something else. I think our record still stands. We did 21 shows in a 24 hour period and we did 100 shows in 50 days. I think they did a certain amount of shows in certain states. They added something more of a twist to it. At the end of the day, it is just something we did to validate our work ethic. If we are going to be out there, we make it stick.

CB: Since I saw Jackyl last time, you had your motorcycle accident last fall. Has that changed your views on riding at all?

JD
: Hell no! I was riding all day yesterday.

CB: It is so scary to me. I know people love it, just love it. I talk to people all the time and they have had accidents just like you and they say they would never give it up.

JD: Nah — hell, if I quit riding today, I would probably get run over by a train tomorrow. You can’t run off and be scared of life.

CB: You guys did Throttle Fest this summer in Kansas City. What was the highlight of that for you?

JD: We were shooting the Full Throttle Saloon fourth season. The TV show has been a blessing as far as kind of sharing the lifestyle we celebrate every day. It is the No. 1 rated show in its time slot and we are very, very proud of the success the show has had. Bruce Chappell is a big part of that TV show. At Throttle Fest, we ended up doing some really cool things with the Full Throttle brand this year. We took it to a whole new level that I don’t think anyone will expect. It is going to be a pretty interesting season for sure.

CB: That was one of my questions actuallywhat can we expect from season four?

JD: You know that bigger is better and I will leave it at that.

CB: I actually had the privilege of seeing Run-DMC re-unite live this summer for the first time in a long time. I wasn’t sure if you had any thoughts on that. I know you are friends with
Darryl and he is a great friend of yours. Were you excited about them reuniting?

JD: I was proud for
Darryl. It was something that meant a lot to him to be able to do that for the fans. They have had their issues with stuff as far as performing together. It is good when that can be put behind them and they can get out there and mix it up. I just love him to death and anything that excites him, I am proud for him.

CB: Going back to the album for a minute, what made you choose to cover “Cover of the Rolling Stone”?

JD: I just felt the tongue-and-cheek aspect they wrote that song. I don’t think they (Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show) would have ever expected to be on the cover of Rolling Stone so they wrote that song. I think Jackyl has a lot of that cynical, fun outlook on thingsnot cynical in a negative way.

I think with Jackyl, we scoff at being the whole critically-acclaimed thing. It is kind of a joke. I don’t need Rolling Stone magazine to validate Jackyl. The fact we are going to play a sold out room in Cincinnati, Ohio, validates Jackyl. The fact that people come out and support us. I don’t need Rolling Stone or any other critic to validate us because every night we hit the stage and everybody that comes to support us validates us, and shows that the core and what the heart of Rock is all about. It is not about a critic or a magazine. We did it with a fun twist and kind of (worked) a couple other influences into it and even used the chainsaw on it. It is an appropriate song.

CB: You guys spend a huge amount of time in Cincinnati and I know you have a hugefan base here. What can the fans look forward to Friday at the show?

JD: We are celebrating the release of this new album and we will be playing some of the new tunes for everybody and looking forward to doing it. At this point and time it is more like a family reunion. We normally come (to Cincinnati) around this time of year and we look forward to it every year. If (Inner Circle) place went out of business, we would still have to open the doors up every year about this time to do a show.
 
 
by mbreen 09.24.2010
Posted In: Live Music, MidPoint Music Festival at 01:54 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)
 
 

MPMF10 Thursday: Dance Party USA

It was an eerie evening leading into the MidPoint Music Festival 2010’s kick-off night Thursday. A gigantic, gorgeous sunset was soon followed by a huge, neon-lit moonrise, which guided my path down the highway to the festival. Once downtown, the streets resembled their usual non-weekend selves — nearly empty, save a couple of neighborhood locals scrambling about. And, while the threat of rain is usually the weather event MidPointers fear most, tonight’s air was dry, humid and record-breaking hot. Who would have thought a music festival on the first weekend of the fall would be met with 95-degree temps (in the daytime, at least)?

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by Mike Breen 12.14.2011
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music, Music Video at 01:12 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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New Maurice Mattei & The Tempers Music Video

Recently, local singer/songwriter Maurice Mattei and his band, The Tempers, celebrated the release of a live album recorded last December at a Christmas show at Covington's Madison Theater. While The Tempers Christmas Show does include a few holiday classics (Lieber & Stoller's "Santa Claus is Back in Town" and Chuck Berry's "Run Rudolph Run"), the bulk of songs are Mattei originals and not exactly of the "Christmas" variety. (Listen to the whole release here.) Still, it's a great release, as the band takes advantage of the live-recording format — the songs exude a palpable, occasionally Punk-like energy. Check out one of those non-holiday tracks, "Made a Mess of It," in music video form below. (Maybe the "Vixen" in the line "Listen to the vixen in the ol' hoosegow/Funny that's the only kinda milk cow" is "Vixen" from Santa's slave-reindeer team?)

The song — which originally appeared on the release The Tempers Perform The Best of Maurice Mattei Volume 3 — was made into a video by Dave Miller from Southern Californian design/illustration company Deluxerider, who has done several clips for Mattei songs, including the Chuck Berry X-mas tune (posted below, as well).

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by Nick Grever 02.02.2015
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music at 11:52 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Beyond Idol Chatter: America Meets Jess Lamb

With her 'American Idol' journey, noted Cincinnati musician Jess Lamb is presented with numerous opportunities and challenges

For many Cincinnati natives, seeing Jess Lamb perform her audition in Kansas City for the American Idol judges was the first time they had ever heard her powerful and emotive voice or seen her honest, determined spirit. But for anyone who has their ears to the ground in Cincinnati’s local music scene (or has drunkenly wandered into Japps on a Tuesday night) knew that Lamb was more than ready for the limelight. Lamb has been performing all across town for years and has consistently turned heads with her stable of classics and originals, paired with her pronounced and technical work on the keys. (In 2013, Lamb was nominated for an R&B/Funk/Soul Cincinnati Entertainment Award and performed at that year’s ceremony, a mini-clip of which was used in her initial biographical segment on Idol.)

But a rise in local and national exposure brings a great deal of opportunities and challenges tied together. And it is those opportunities and challenges that my series of posts following Lamb’s experience will reflect upon. Lamb is an indie artist to the core; she writes and records with many different projects beyond her solo work. She plays all around town in the hopes of steadily increasing her visibility. But how does an artist used to local coverage deal with the sudden influx in national attention? What effect will American Idol have on local attendance or the reception at her shows? Will there be any long term changes or will this ultimately be a flash-in-the-pan experience for Lamb? These are the types of questions that will be explored as the show carries on.


Of course, to answer where Lamb will be going, it helps to know how she even became a part of American Idol. It all happened by chance.


“I went to Columbus for what they call the ‘Bus Tour.’ Basically you go down there and stand in front of executive producers of the show. From there, they just call you and tell you where to go next. You’re just playing the waiting game after that,” Lamb says.


Lamb and her friend’s spontaneous trip to Columbus led to the next stage of the journey — performing for Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr. (one of Lamb’s musical idols). 


 


There was a month in between both auditions, leaving plenty of time to think and speculate. After the audition in Kansas City and the announcement of her participation on the show, Lamb has been speaking to the media while still finding time for her day job and performing at night.


With “Hollywood Week,” featuring the singers who made it past the initial auditions, approaching, Lamb’s Amercan Idol adventure is just about to truly take off. Here at home, she’s already seen a change in her local reception.


“I’ve felt a lot of support from the people that I look up to. Frankly, I’m shocked at the support. I’m shocked that a lot of people see where I’m going with this,” Lamb says.


After her audition aired, Lamb played a show in West Chester, where she was greeted by an entirely different type of crowd than the Main Street district mainstays. Instead of young people buying her shots, she was met by a group of older women who brought her flowers.


The crowds aren’t just growing at her shows either; her online presence has grown as well. American Idol fans have flocked to Lamb’s Facebook, Instagram, email box and Reverbnation page. So many, in fact, that Lamb is having a hard time keeping up with all the attention.


“There’s been so much [growth] on social media, so many great emails. I’m trying to respond to every email and I have to take hours out of every day to do it and it’s amazing, I love it,” Lamb says.


In many ways, that excitement is indicative of Lamb and her Idol journey thus far. It’s been a whirlwind of activity that is guaranteed to grow as the show progresses. But she has taken it all in stride and is taking every opportunity the show has provided her. We’ll just have to tune in to see what other opportunities arise in the coming weeks.


The Hollywood Week episodes of American Idol air locally this Wednesday and Thursday on Fox 19.

 
 
by Hannah McCartney 02.07.2012
Posted In: Live Music at 01:47 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Local Orgs Can Host Free Choir Games Performances

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard the buzz about the World Choir Games, which will feature 20,000 participants from across the globe representing cultural singing traditions and some serious musical expertise competing right here in Cincinnati.

So, this July, it’s going to be the summer of song in Cincinnati, thanks to the massive influx of singing professionals for the 2012 World Choir Games. But even those who can’t afford tickets for the games will be able to engage in 11-day musical celebration, thanks to the “Friendship Concerts.”

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by Brian Baker 09.27.2010
Posted In: MidPoint Music Festival, Live Music at 08:24 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

MPMF10 Saturday: S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y Night!

OK, so which Babylonian weather deity did we collectively blow like a $5 crack whore to assure us of an entire weekend without getting firehosed by the kind of precipitation generally associated with tropical monsoons? Because I want to get his number in our rolodex for next year. Another absolutely gorgeous night for another spectacular evening of musical diversion and awesomeness. That’s right, awesomeness.

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