Update – Up To Date!

Hey everybody –

So I’m sitting at home with a fever, nursing a nasty headache, and I figured that was as good of a time as any to throw a big old update your way.

1st of all – if you’ve missed them so far, I urge you to check out the Music Means Family Skyline Sessions – we take a bit of time before various house shows to film 1 song sessions, and I’m really proud of how the first three turned out. It truly is amazing how talented these folks are. So, take a look at the 1st three sessions, with Courtney Marie Andrews, Field Report, and Hip Hatchet.

We’ll have a couple more coming your way, after our next few house shows. Which you should come to. They’re next week. And they’ll be awesome.

On November 11th, we have a special evening with Vikesh Kapoor. Vikesh is a stunning songwriter, and wowed a couple thousand of us earlier this year at Timber! Watch this video – then go to the event page, then RSVP, then come.

The Event Page!

Then, I’m beyond excited to present the Brooklyn-based Cuddle Magic, with an opening set from Kalispell on November 13th. Again, watch this video, click the link, RSVP, and show up!

I really do hope I get to see some of you at one of these shows. They really are special occasions.

Last, but not least, Caroline Smith is playing at The Hideout this Friday. You’d be crazy not to go. She just did an awesome session with the great guys over at Audiotree – check it out, and come hang out on Friday night.

http://audiotree.tv/session/caroline-smith/

See you soon, I hope!

 

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Under Construction

Hey all –

Over the coming months, you’ll see some slow changes to the platform of this blog, including the design elements, the layout, etc. I want everything to reflect every project that I’m currently working on as part of this blog – from the Skyline Sessions, to the intimate concerts, to the blog itself. I don’t envision actually taking the site down to do significant updates for a while, so don’t worry! I just wanted to give everyone a heads up.

In the meantime, I’ll be announcing a few more shows over the coming weeks – and doing a few more Skyline Sessions. I’m so unbelievably excited about all of these, and I hope you are too.

If you didn’t get a chance, take 3 minutes and watch the most recent Skyline Session, which we filmed the night of Courtney Marie Andrews and Erin Rae’s house show. I haven’t felt as emotionally vulnerable as I did listening to those two women on that beautiful evening in a long time.

 

Please keep an eye out for exciting changes here – and hopefully I’ll see all of you on November 13th at 914 N. California for an intimate evening with Cuddle Magic and Kalispell.

Be well.

Introducing…The Skyline Sessions

Hey everybody!

Happy almost middle of the week! As many of (read: all of you) know, I’ve been obsessively curating house concerts as of late, and hopefully, you’ve all been to one or will be coming to one in the future.

However, if you haven’t been able to make it – I have a special treat for you. My cousin Dan and I have begun to record simple sessions before each show, one or two songs, with the hope of sharing them with you. Well, after some trial and error, I am truly, truly overjoyed to present to you the first two Skyline Sessions, from the recent shows with the fantastic gentlemen of Field Report, as well as the exceptionally talented Hip Hatchet. Know that I intend to write more thoroughly about these shows in the near future, but I wanted to give you a glimpse of these – and frankly, I was too excited not to share. And now…

Skyline Session #1 – Field Report – I Am Not Waiting Anymore (Alternate Version)

 

Skyline Session #2 – Hip Hatchet – American Charm

 

I am so, so excited about these – and I can’t wait to share more with you! Also, if you’re in Chicago this weekend – two really incredible house shows coming up, with Courtney Marie Andrews and Erin Rae on Friday, and Bryan John Appleby on Saturday. Come over to facebook.com/musicmeansfamily and RSVP!

 

A Little Too Busy

Hey everybody – sorry for the infrequency of the updates. I’ve been traveling for work, and working on getting house shows set up, and seeing shows, and biting off maybe just a bit more than I can chew.

There are worse things, right?

Anyway, I wanted to drop by and post a few things that have been keeping me sane while I wait for the leaves to change (don’t worry – a fall mix is brewing)! Let’s jump right in:

I’m in love with the new album from Luray – the project of Shannon Carey, who is the sister of Sean Carey (of Bon Iver). She strings together soaring melodies, soothing banjo, and copious layers to create a fantastic fall soundtrack. This has been on many mornings for me as of late. Here’s a beautiful single take video of the title track ‘The WIlder’. Go get this album folks.

 

Also, Caroline Smith’s new album will find its way to your ears shortly. I can’t say enough about Caroline’s talent – and this album will most certainly deliver. Sharing this one again – make sure to grab this on 10/8.

 

Nathaniel Rateliff’s new album is absolutely breathtaking – and it’s a wonder for the beginnings of autumn, Enjoy this video, and then go grab it.

 

I’ll be dropping by with a true Autumn Mix soon – in the meantime, I hope to see you out at one of our house shows coming up. Come over to http://www.facebook.com/musicmeansfamily and check them out!

 

9/24 – Field Report

10/3 – Hip Hatchet, Justin Klaas, and Old Sap

10/11 – Courtney Marie Andrews and Erin Rae

10/12 – Bryan John Appleby

 

You REALLY don’t want to miss any of these. I promise.

take note, there’s still a hole in my heart

My favorite thing about Saturday mornings is putting on a record, grabbing a mug or 4 of coffee, and just taking some time to myself to listen to whatever is moving me at the moment. It’s a way to sort of exorcize the stresses of the week, to forget about the trivial stuff, and to really spend some time taking care of all of the thoughts and ideas I haven’t worked through during the week.

This morning, I can’t stop spinning Volcano Choir’s new album, ‘Repave’. I was lucky enough to see them last night, and this record is just as incredible live as it is recorded. If you haven’t picked it up yet, please do yourself a favor and go grab it. It’s a soundtrack for the fall, a means to shake off the last hazy days of summer and embrace the crisp changing of the seasons. Justin Vernon’s voice is still as entrancing as ever, and, similar to Bon Iver’s eponymous album, there is a constant feeling of introspection and calm that this record brings. Here’s “Comrade”:

I’ve been listening to a ton of other stuff lately as well, and I feel bad I haven’t been sharing it here. So I think I’ll just throw a bunch of great stuff out to you to accompany that Volcano Choir album, and hopefully you find something new (or old) you love this weekend!

 

I recently acquired a copy of Gregory Alan Isakov’s ‘That Sea, The Gambler’ on vinyl, and I fell in love with this song all over again.

 

It’s no secret that I love Noah Gundersen, and SerialBox just did a great session of his song ‘Cigarettes’:

 

It’s almost fall. Which means I’ll be listening to the Field Report album from last year a lot. I love this stripped down session from SXSW earlier this year:

 

Like I needed another reminder that I wanted to be at Doe Bay – here’s a video of Mikey and Matty with the Passenger String Quartet at this year’s Doe Bay:

 

To make it clear that I’m ready for fall – here’s an old favorite from Lucy Rose:

 

Enjoy the rest of your weekend y’all. Also, if you haven’t yet – please come over to facebook.com/MusicMeansFamily, click the ‘Like” button, and check out the upcoming house shows. There are going to be some special ones.

Be well.

 

 

 

House Shows! 3 of them!

I promised I would be announcing a couple more house shows – and I’m here to deliver!

So without further ado:

10/3/13 (8:00p) @ 914 – Hip Hatchet w/ TBA

Philippe Bronchtein (Hip Hatchet) is a stunning, raw talent with a voice that knocks me off my feet whenever I hear it. This will be a great way to usher in October, with whiskey in hand and friends surrounding us. Check out this video from Hip Hatchet earlier this year, and then swing by and check out the Facebook event (http://on.fb.me/1a3MBi6). RSVP at musicmeansfamily@gmail.com

 

10/11/13 (9:00p) @1858 – Courtney Marie Andrews w/ Erin Rae

I can’t tell you how excited I am about this. If you’ve stopped by the blog at all this year, you’ll know how fond I am of Courtney’s album that came out earlier this year, and Erin is a phenomenal talent as well. This one will be at a new venue, and we’ll be doing some things a bit different. Bring a blanket, or pillows, or a lawn/folding chair to sit on. Think candlelight, soft October shadows, and what promises to be an unforgettable evening. A video from each of these stunning songwriters below, and the Facebook link for the event (http://on.fb.me/1447Gq9). RSVP at musicmeansfamily@gmail.com

 

10/12/13 (9:30p) – Bryan John Appleby (solo)

Again, there are very few words for how excited I am about this. Bryan is one of the finest songwriters around, and the opportunity to see him perform solo in an intimate space has me jumping for joy. The space for this one is yet to be announced, but it’ll be great – I promise. I really can’t wait to see you here. Facebook link (http://on.fb.me/1clOhRB). RSVP at musicmeansfamily@gmail.com

 

I really do hope to see all of you at each of these. I’ll leave you all with a quote from the best thing I read all week:

“That darkened hall, that holy space, where the face next to you no longer matters. That place where the arms on your wristwatch are meaningless. The hurried things of your life are made common and then invisible by the hovering heaven of strings – suddenly the pedestrian things are made unimportant by the music. Here, in these places, the darkened audience all faces forward watching only one thing: the musicians.”

you stood strong/though you were wrong

Vandaveer - Studios at SPACE 5/19

Vandaveer – Studios at SPACE 5/19

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had the opportunity to see Vandaveer perform last night in the studio at SPACE, with about 20 other lucky concertgoers.

I was about 4 feet from them, and sat in perfect, reverent silence through most of their 15+ song set. It was almost as if I was at church, if church were a rare, incredible experience, that you longed for with every ounce of your being.

Vandaveer’s music is at times heartening, at times terrifying, and always enveloping. They have a remarkable ability to make time stand still, as haunting ballads sweep through the air and wash over you with a sense of overwhelming yearning.

They released an album of murder ballads entitled “Oh Willie, Please” earlier this year, and it’s hauntingly beautiful. Their previous album “Dig Down Deep’ was one of my favorites of 2011.

Here’s a Lavomatik Session of ‘Dig Down Deep’:

 

And a great little Take Away Show:

 

If they come through your town on tour – go see them. Really. Do it.