YouTube Favorites of NOW Playlist

Here’s my playlist of a few of my current faves — there’s 8 videos totaling 30 minutes of enjoyment!

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Check ‘Em Out: The Well Reds

 
the well reds
 
Here’s an intro to pop rock quartet The Well Reds. These guys have been named “the epitome of pure musical bliss” by The Daily Unsigned and are preparing to release Volume in November 2014. The Atlanta, GA natives just premiered the newest track from the album, “Do You Still Love Me,” an infectiously catchy track reminiscent of Fall Out Boy, Panic! At The Disco, and Maroon 5. 
 
The tune debuted on Indie Shuffle, who called it “a whip-my-hair-back-and-forth singalong track that’ll make every cell in your body wanna do the shimmie.”
 
 

 
 

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The Mystery Is The Green Seed

“Tackling contemporary issues —and universal themes of the heart and home, the multifarious southern hip-hop crew creates a smart, infectious, 13-track LP exuding positivity and self-awareness.” SPIN

“For folks who think the ’90s was Golden Age of hip hop, Birmingham, Alabama group The Green Seed recalls the days of De La Soul, Tribe Called Quest, Black Star and more.” -Brooklyn Vegan

“Comparing the socially conscious four-man crew’s rhythmic and lyrical dexterity to Ghostface Killah and Kool Keith isn’t stretching too much.” – Nashville Scene

Over the summer, inexplicable commercials have been popping up all over local Birmingham television stations.  The commercials are only a quarter of a minute long, but thanks to the odd imagery involved they have created quite a memorable impact on all who have seen them.

Birmingham residents have been perplexed as to what the commercials were designed to advertise since they were all quite obscure, leaving much to the viewer’s imagination.

The confusion was taken to an all-new level when one of the spots was aired on national television during Late Night with Seth Meyers and Saturday Night Live commercial breaks.

Today, the source of the perplexing commercials has been revealed, and it is not what people expected. Online, many television watchers speculated as to the source with some arguing it was for a comedic sketch show and others saying it was a publicity stunt for some soon to be released product. While all the guesses were good, they were all wrong.

Birmingham, Alabama hip-hop group The Green Seed is the proud source of the surreal commercials.  Each member of the four-piece group (Jean Jefferson, Ted Thompson, Psychic Mike, and Winston James) recorded their own commercial in a viral marketing campaign for their debut full-length album, Drapetomania. The record was released July 15th via Communicating Vessels and is available for purchase now.

In case you missed seeing the commercials on television then you can catch them on the YouTube playlist above. Of course, be sure to dial the number at the bottom of the screen.

The Green Seed is an exciting new act hailing from one of the current most musically fertile cities in the US. Their debut album has gained nationwide critical acclaim and is most definitely one of the best hip-hop albums to have been released this year. Drapetomania is currently at #2 on the CMJ Hip-Hop charts.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that Drapetomania wasn’t the product of the Dirty South rather than the blunted grit of J Dilla’s Detroit or the otherworldly productions of Lex Records. But Drapetomania is no homage – it’s a unique blend of heart, laughter, and guts. While the album often contemplates bondage – artistic, romantic, etc. – but, ultimately, it’s a soundtrack to Freedom… And whatever comes next.

If the commercials have you intrigued then the music will have you hooked. Listen to the stream of Drapetomania on Spin now, right here.

While their recorded songs are amazing, there’s nothing quite like seeing these guys live. They’ll be playing a handful of dates in the coming weeks, so check out the tour dates below.

Tour Dates

9/5 in Florence, AL @ 116 Mobile
9/12 in Little Rock, AR @ White Water Tavern
9/19 in Hattiesburg, MS @ Thirsty Hippo
10/21-25 in NYC @ CMJ Music Marathon

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Check ‘Em Out: The Hunts

The Hunts

Cherrytree Records and Interscope Records are pleased to announce that they have signed seven-piece sibling band The Hunts to their roster and have released the group’s major-label debut EP, Life Was Simple. In addition, a video for The Hunts’ current single, “Make This Leap,” premieres today.

The pastoral video for “Make This Leap” was shot in The Hunts’ hometown of Chesapeake, Virginia, with a few moments filmed on the family’s actual property. It was directed by Michelle Peerali, who has collaborated with such artists as The Kills, The Cult, The Black Keys, Pyyramids, and Moby. The idyllic location settings beautifully capture the band’s harmony-laced take on alt-folk that’s both breathtaking and sweetly ethereal.

The Hunts have been playing music together almost their entire lives. Ranging from ages 16 to 24, twin sisters Jenni and Jessi and their five brothers Josh, Jonathan, Jordan, Justin, and Jamison all learned to sing and play violin as young kids and spent much of their childhood performing throughout their community. After teaching themselves to play instruments like mandolin, piano, ukulele, banjo, and drums, The Hunts began experimenting with songwriting and soon brought to life a batch of songs that reveal their sophisticated sense of melody and dreamy innocence.

Lead single “Make This Leap” is a lilting piece of indie- folk built on layered harmonies, intricately textured acoustic instrumentation, and lyrics that gracefully shift from melancholy to triumphant. With Josh and Jenni taking turns as lead vocalist, The Hunts sustain that dynamic throughout Life Was Simple, often turning their shared memories into songs that capture heartache and wonder with a wide-eyed but wistful elegance.

“Growing up the way we did, we had to learn to make do with what we had, so the stories from that time are incredibly special to us,” says Jessi, who explains that all seven members of The Hunts write each song together. “A lot of the time we write about what we remember from being young — the things we went through that have drawn us together and stuck in our hearts and really made us who we are.”

The Hunts will hit the road for a U.S. tour in September. All upcoming dates are below.

  • 08/23 Wilson, NC                            Barton College
  • 08/29 Norfolk, VA                            Virginia Wesleyan College–Batten Lawn
  • 09/09 Vienna, VA                           Jammin’ Java
  • 09/10 Pittsburgh, PA                      Hard Rock Cafe
  • 09/12 South Burlington, VT          Higher Ground Showcase Lounge
  • 09/13 Boston, MA                           Cafe 939 at Berklee
  • 09/15 New York, NY                       Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2
  • 09/16 Malvern, PA                          General Wayne E.S.
  • 09/17 Philadelphia, PA                  World Cafe Live
  • 09/17 Malvern, PA                          Charlestown E.S.
  • 09/18 Carrboro, NC                        Cat’s Cradle – Back Room
  • 09/19 Highland Springs, VA         Henrico Theatre
  • 09/20 Rock Island, IL                      Centennial Hall–Augustana College
  • 09/21 Chicago, IL                            Schubas Tavern
  • 09/23 Columbus, OH                     Rumba Cafe
  • 09/24 Nashville, TN                        High Watt
  • 09/26 Houston, TX                          McGonigel’s Mucky Duck
  • 09/27 Dallas, TX                              Index Festival
  • 09/29 Athens, GA                           Georgia Theatre–Rooftop
  • 09/30 Atlanta, GA                            Vinyl
  • 10/03 Georgetown, TX                   The Cove/Southwestern
  • 10/04 Austin, TX                             Austin City Limits
  • 10/08  Pineville, LA                        Louisana College-outdoor open field
  • 10/10 Montgomery, AL                   Faulkner University
  • 10/11 Roswell, GA                          Roswell Cultural Arts Center
  • 10/17 Madison, WI                          Capitol Theater
  • 10/18 Chippewa Falls, WI             Heyde Center for the Arts
  • 10/19 Spirit Lake, IA                       Sami Bedell Center for the Performing Arts
  • 10/22 Fulton, MO                            William Woods University
  • 10/24 Brussels, WI                          Southern Door Community Auditorium
  • 10/26 Batavia, IL                             Batavia Fine Arts Centre
  • 10/28 Searcy, AR                            Harding University
  • 11/07 Henderson, TN                     Freed-Hardeman University
  • 11/08 Memphis, TN                        Buckman Performing Arts Center

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Live Show Review: Caught a Ghost

Caught a Ghost

Here’s some education on the band Caught a Ghost —

Jesse Nolan describes the name of his band ‘Caught A Ghost’ as referring to the sensation of being filled with the spirit of the past. “It’s an old expression,” he says, “musicians used to say you caught a ghost if you gave a good performance. Like you were possessed.”

As the songwriter, producer and lead singer of the band, Nolan is a devotee of music from bygone eras. But he eagerly expounds upon his affection for vintage soul, delta blues, and 90s rap alike. As Nolan explains, “It’s definitely like being possessed. It’s an obsession. What’s not to be obsessed about? I don’t think it makes me unique, it makes me human.”

What does make Nolan unique is his musical dexterity (he plays all of the instruments on his recordings except horns and some of the drums) combined with the effortlessness with which he seems to pull from many different genres. His music recalls influences from the soul and rock n’ roll traditions (Stax, Motown, Sam Cooke, the Rolling Stones) yet still feel distinctly modern with references to hip-hop and electronic recordings from the 90s to contemporary tracks.

Anyone who has seen Caught a Ghost play live can testify to that notion that in addition to playing high energy shows with as many as nine musicians and various dancers onstage, the group often makes use of projections and performance art as a means of shaking people out of their comfort zones.

When I went to see these guys jam out earlier this month, it turned out to be one of my favorite shows. The energy and the NEED to dance is immense. I liked that the show was a little bit more intimate, too. The venue is a big one, but the show that night was off in a corner of the building by the bar. If you are into Fitz and the Tantrums, I think you’ll highly benefit from checking out Caught a Ghost. If they’re playing in your city, definitely go see them live.

Here’s 2 audio recordings from the show. The quality is bad, this is know; and you have to turn it up to be able to really get into their jam sessions. But, I couldn’t help it! I had to share them with you because the energy was awesome. I never said I was an audio recording expert.

The band’s album Human Nature is out now.

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Listen: Bear Hands – “Giants” (Adrian Lux Remix)

Bear Hands

Listen: Bear Hands – “Giants” (Adrian Lux Remix)

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Free Download: B Riddimz – “Rookerie Ruins” (M!NT Remix)

M!NT

Listen/download: B Riddimz – “Rookerie Ruins” (M!NT Remix)

There are very few DJs and producers nowadays who began their careers by teaching themselves how to play multiple instruments by the ripe age of 14, but the exception lies within this aspiring musician who has come a long way since his move to Brooklyn earlier this year.

Effortlessly incorporating his instrumental zeal over trapped out rhythms and melodic beats, Cody Yozipovic aka M!NT reveals a brand-new remix of B-Riddimz’s original track called “Rookerie Ruins.”

The Canadian-bred, Arizona-to-Colorado raised artist is a dedicated composer, music producer & multi-instrumentalist who encompasses a wide range of experience over almost every genre of music which goes to show in his latest production. The remix comes from a track by fellow Brooklynite B-Riddimz, who broke into the music scene as a drummer for Brooklyn-based bands Brooklyn Gypsies and Technicolor Lenses. Yesterday Run The Trap premiered both the original and the remix, noting how B-Riddimz is “no stranger to the game as his productions are dripping with taste of a guy who’s played instruments for a long time.”

Following the release of his debut music video “Flashlights” earlier this summer, Do Androids Dance gives credit to the young producer noting how “M!NT has been on a roll lately, producing a steady stream of soulful bass music, and it doesn’t look like his output is slowing down at all.” Case in point — in addition to releasing his sophomore EP Pay It Forward this fall, M!NT plans to top off the year’s events with a slew of new productions and upcoming tour dates along the West Coast, including four memorable performances at Burning Man, all while scoring his first major documentary film.

M!NT’S UPCOMING TOUR DATES:

8/15 @ SPARC w/ Freddy Todd & Kraddy – San Francisco, CA
8/20 @ The New Parish, Wormhole Wednesdays – Oakland, CA
8/23 @ 1Up – Reno, NV
+ More Dates TBA

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Video: Francisco the Man – “Progress”

Francisco the Man

“…indie in theory, but with big-tent ambitions, a little shoegaze, a lot of synth-pop, the faintest hint of danceable forms of punk.”  Pitchfork

“Francisco the Man articulate all their pent-up yearning and tension with layers of reverberating guitars (and now, synths) ranging from lush to squalling. If you’re looking for reference points, think Built to Spill canoodling at the beach with ’90s British shoegazers and contemporary electro-poppers.” Buzzbands LA

 “The right balance of ear-catching fervor with a looming electronic armor to separate itself from the throwaway pop milieu.” I Guess I’m Floating

 “The glistening, hook-filled guitar jam “Progress” is the first single and it packs a huge melodic punch.”Music for Ants

 “A catchy chorus that gets stuck in your head for the rest of the day, tight wave-guitars and an overall summery dancing vibe.” Subbacultcha

LA’s Francisco The Man recently announced the release of their debut album, Loose Ends, on Small Plates records this September 30th.  Check out the video for their song, “Progress” now!

It took roughly seven years, a teenage instrumental rock band, a debut EP, additions and subtractions, a roller rink and a near death experience to arrive at Francisco The Man. Following a two-year hiatus beginning in 2008, the band relocated from Riverside to Los Angeles, CA, bringing along a new addition, guitarist Brock Woolsey. With the help of Small Plates Records, they released two 7″s, In the Corners and Tiger.

 

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Free Download: The Last Bison – “Every Time”

The Last Bison
…The Last Bison make theatrical folk music that refuses to stand still and isn’t afraid to get loud.” - Wondering Sound

To capture the new sounds on The Last Bison’s upcoming album titled VA (out 9/30), the band spent many days and nights in an old A-frame cabin, on the outskirts of the Great Dismal Swamp near the band’s home in Chesapeake, VA. Out of this rustic cabin emerged a collection of music with booming organic drums and energy beyond anything from their previous work. The 11 songs on VA reveal a rejuvenated band relishing in their newfound freedom and returning to their independent roots.

Ben Hardesty, who is the primary songwriter and vocalist, also recorded the drum tracks on the new album.  Andrew Benfante, who has played a 1930s reed organ on previous works, adds piano to the layers, and Amos Housworth has expanded from cello to offering all the bass tracks on the project. Dan Hardesty alternates from banjo to mandolin to guitar, while he and Annah Housworth, who plays bells, provide the lush backing vocals. Teresa Totheroh’s violin is the thread that sows the myriad parts together.

Listen/download: The Last Bison – “Every Time”

Upcoming Tour Dates
9/26 – Richmond, VA – The Camel (tix)
9/30 – Pittsburgh, PA – Hard Rock Cafe (tix)
10/01 – Bloomington, IN – The Bishop (tix)
10/02 – Chicago, IL – Schubas Tavern (tix)
10/03 – Minneapolis, MN – 7th Street Entry (tix)
10/04 – Rock Island, IL – Rozz Tox (tix)
10/16 – New York, NY – Mercury Lounge (tix)
10/17 – Fairfield, CT – StageOne
10/18 – Philadelphia, PA – World Cafe Live (tix)
10/22 – Durham, NC – Motorco Music Hall (tix)
10/23 – Atlanta, GA – Vinyl (tix)
10/24 – Athens, GA – New Earth Music Hall (tix)
10/25 – Charlotte, NC – Visulite Theatre (tix)
11/06 – Vienna, VA – Jammin’ Java (tix)
11/07 – Charlottesville, VA – The Southern (tix)

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Free Download: Dimond Saints – “Sum Luv”

Dimond Saints

Listen/download: Dimond Saints – “Sum Luv”

Dimond Saints from Oakland, California, finally drop “Sum Luv” as a free download, which has seen dance floors  from Coachella to their sold out tour dates, pulse with excitement whenever its dropped. With “Sum Luv”, Dimond Saints effortlessly fuse their future bass sound with some deeper trap elements.

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