Music News Recap: Soundtrack To Summer

What’s been going on in the world of music lately? Read on to get the scoop on your favorite artists, and start some discussion about current music-related events!

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The King of Pop is dead at 50 years old following a heart attack on Thursday.

Michael Jackson

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Media Roundup: What Will Spring Bring?

What’s been going on in the world of music lately? Read on to get the scoop on your favorite artists, and start some discussion about current music-related events!

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After making a stop in Madison to play a fantastic show at the High Noon Saloon, An Horse made their way to NYC to play “Camp Out” for David Letterman.   If you haven’t done so already, check out our interview with the band here.

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Paul and Ringo will lead an alarmingly amazing lineup of musicians who will perform at the upcoming “Change Begins Within” benefit for the David Lynch Foundation.  The foundation “raises funds to teach one million at-risk children to meditate — giving them life-long tools to overcome stress and violence and promote peace and success in their lives.”

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The Roots are settling into their new role as house band for Late Night With Jimmy Fallon.  Check out a video interview complete with rehearsal footage of the band here.

The Roots

The Roots

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Britpop legend Jarvis Cocker has a new album called Further Complications due out in May.  Let’s hope he’ll make time for an American tour after he completes his European dates!

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If you read the endlessly entertaining memoir Petal Pusher from Madison-native, rocker and author Laurie Lindeen (which you definitely should have), then you’ll be interested to know that her former band, Zuzu’s Petals, has a new retrospective album available from Rhino.

Zuzu's Petals

Zuzu's Petals

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Thanks to NPR, Dan Deacon fans can stream his new album, Bromst, in its entirety.  What do you think of the new tunes?  If you didn’t already know, Deacon will be in Madison on May 4th with Future Islands and Teeth Mountain.  Get your tickets here!

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Check out P.O.S.‘s new video for “Optimist.”

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It’s time to compare notes.  NME recently compiled a list of the “20 Greatest Goth Tracks.” What do you think of their selection?  What would you have included?
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Madison’s own Stu Levitan recently spoke with folk icon Joan Baez in an interview for 92.1 The Mic.  Click here to listen!  (Listed under March 8, 2009 Hour 2).  If you still don’t have tickets to Joan’s show at the Barrymore, get ’em here!

Joan Baez

Joan Baez

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If you’re thinking about picking up tickets to catch No Doubt on their upcoming tour, here’s a little extra motivation:  fans who opt to purchase premium tickets online will be able to download the band’s entire catalogue, plus exclusive content.
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Lots of exciting news from the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club camp!  A new album, DVD and tour are all in the band’s game plan for 2009.

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

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While you’re waiting for the indie folk trio that is Good Old War to play Madison on April 6th, check out this interview with the band from Blare magazine.  Need tickets to the show?  Head over here.
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Hardly a week goes by without some news from Oasis.  This week there are no brawls or international incidents to report on–just some free music on its way this spring!

Oasis

Oasis

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This year’s festival season is starting to take shape.  Pitchfork announced the first batch of confirmed acts for their July showcase, plus a brand new feature where ticket holders have the opportunity to pick the bands’ setlists.

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Jack White and The KillsAlison Mosshart are so strangers to being members of fantastic musical duos, so it only seems natural that they would join forces to create a brand new band called The Dead Weather. Along with The Raconteurs‘ “other Jack” (Lawrence) and Queens of the Stone Age‘s Dean Fertita, White and Mosshart plan to release the band’s debut album in June. Get the full scoop here, and check out a video of their first single.

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Congratulations are in order for Ryan Adams and Mandy Moore, who recently wed in a private ceremony in Georgia.

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A new Jeff Buckley CD/DVD package to mark the 15th anniversary of his debut album’s release will be available on June 2.  The set features live performances and rare TV clips. Find out more about what the package will include.

Jeff Buckley

Jeff Buckley

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Dahni Harrison talked to Billboard about the upcoming release of his band’s first album, as well as the new version of Rock Band featuring that one group his dad was in.  You may have heard of them…

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Check out a preview of The Hold Steady‘s new DVD, A Positive Rage.  When it’s realeased on April 7th, there’ll undoubtedly be more than a few Madison fans scanning the screen to catch a glimpse of themselves getting blown away by the band’s amazing show at The Majestic last year.

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A new solo Iggy Pop album is due out in May.  Read what the godfather of punk had to say about finding his inspiration as well as the furture of the Stooges after the passing of Ron Asheton.

Iggy Pop

Iggy Pop

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A Note from The Hold Steady

The Hold Steady will be performing one week from today at the Majestic Theatre. Get your tickets now as they haven’t quite sold out yet but are very close..

The Hold Steady was born out of some loose talk in my Boreum Hill apartment in 2002. I had moved to Brooklyn about two years earlier. I was thirty-one years old, and the other dudes were about my same age. Our concept was to start a straight rock band, with low aspirations. Just local shows, no touring, and most likely no real records. We practiced for a while and then played our first show in January 2003 at North Six, in Williamsburg. I was surprised at how many people showed up.

The show went well. It reminded us, all veterans of hard luck bands, that music can be fun. We played our second show in Baltimore, and it sort of becomes a blur after that. We quickly broke our rules about no touring and records, and released three records in three years. We lost one member and added two others. The most recent record, 2006’s Boys & Girls in America, was successful enough to get us in a bunch of magazines and take us pretty much around the world. It was, to be honest, pretty ironic- the band that set out to do nothing became a critics favorite and a touring machine. The Hold Steady had become our lives.

Thus, when we began talking about a new record, it became obvious that in order to keep up our schedule of releases, we would have to start writing on the road. We hadn’t done a lot of this previously. Ideas started taking shape in hotel rooms during while we played European festivals in Summer 2007. Laptop demos were recorded and shared. I remember Tad coming up with the title track, “Stay Positive”, backstage at Manchester Academy. The music from “Lord, I’m Discouraged” had its genesis partly in Milan and partly in Hamburg. We couldn’t slow down, but we could get ready.

When the touring wrapped up, we went straight into rehearsals and fleshed out the ideas that were banging around. As with each record, there was a desire to make it more musical than the last one. In this case, more musical meant an attempt at more dynamics, different instrumentation, more complex arrangements, and not always hiding behind raw volume. The songs came together quickly, but were painstakingly rehearsed and reviewed, with many minor changes made along the way.

Finally, in early January 2008, we showed up at Water Music in Hoboken NJ to record our fourth record. We worked with John Agnello again, as we had developed a great sense of trust with him during the Boys & Girls sessions. When John says something sucks, it probably sucks.

We recorded basics for nineteen songs. Everyone was very excited with the progress. Everyone played to their utmost potential. Lyrically, I had an idea of what I was trying to say much earlier in the process than on our previous records. Spirits were high.

We moved on to Wild Arctic Studios in Queens for vocals and overdubs and then to the Magic Shop in Soho for mixing We got some of our most favorite rock musicians to sing and play on it. We had some minor struggles, and a bunch of really good times. Finally, in mid-February, it was done.

Its always interesting how a record reveals itself to you. You can go in with the best-laid plans, but there is always a fair amount of uncertainty. Late night brainstorms become defining moments. Accidents become choruses. You might write the record, but it ends up teaching you something about yourself.

We kick off this record with “Constructive Summer”, a driving song about trying harder. “Navy Sheets” features a guest harmony vocal by Patterson Hood from the Drive-By Truckers, who have been a modern day inspiration to us. “Both Crosses” was a live in the studio experiment that ended up working. The record ends with “Slapped Actress”, which combines a mammoth Tad Kubler riff with a lyric inspired by the John Cassavetes movie Opening Night.

I think this record, musically and lyrically, is about the attempt to age gracefully. This is no easy feat, especially in rock and roll. I am now 36, and will be 37 shortly after this record is released. At the age of 30 I was working in an office, thinking my rock band days were behind me. This last summer we opened for the Rolling Stones in Ireland. We have met many of our musical heroes.

Meanwhile, in the five years since forming, the guys in the band have gone through a bunch of typical thirty something stuff- babies born, family members dying, relationships started, relationships ended, health problems, joy, struggle, life, etc.

But possibly the most exciting aspect of our band is the community of fans that have followed us around the country. In talking to them, we have found that no matter their ages, they are so much like us as people, that they seem at times an extension of the music. A great American philosopher named D. Boon once said “Our band could be your life”. I think that is true. But “Your Life could be Our Band” is also a true statement. I know this because we have lived it.

These are our lives. These are your lives. This is our fourth record. Stay Positive.

Craig Finn

Brooklyn NY

4.21.08

Our hardworking interns and True Crew members snagged up the few coveted guest list spots we had available for this one. To make it up to all our super radical fans we are offering a guest list spot plus one to any other show we have this week. Just be the second person to email MJ@TrueEndeavors.com with “Win (the band you want to see) Tix” in the subject line. I will always respect your info, promise.