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Blogaroo: Day 10: GZA performs “Liquid Swords”

27 May

As a founding member of Wu-Tang, Gary Grice — aka GZA, is hip hop royalty. While he’s released a number of solo albums, he always comes back to the clan, which has become known for its innovative rap-stylings.

The Wu-Tang Clan assembled Staten Island, New York in the early ’90s under RZA, the group’s producer.  RZA and Ol’ Dirty Bastard adopted the group’s name after the film Shaolin and Wu Tangand the group’s debut album loosely adopted a Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang theme — dividing the album into Shaolin and Wu-Tang sections.

As the oldest and first member to receive a record deal, GZA has become known as the group’s spiritual head. Other members include Method ManRaekwonGhostface KillahInspectah DeckU-God and Masta Killa.

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Blogaroo: Day 14: Charles Bradley

23 May

Charles Bradley, or “the Screaming Eagle of Soul,”  was born in 1948 in Gainesville, Florida, where he lived with his grandmother until he was 8 years old. It was then that Bradley moved to Brooklyn, New York to live with his mother, where his sister took him to see James Brown perform at the Apollo Theater in 1962. And the rest, as they say, is history.

After running away from home — living in the streets and on subway cars — Bradley joined the Job Corps and worked as a chef in Maine for 10 years. While he performed with a band about five or six times, he went solo after his fellow bandmates were drafted into the Vietnam War.

Following the break up of his band, Bradley moved west — hitchhiking across the country and moving to upstate New York, Seattle, Canada and Alaska before settling in California, where he worked odd jobs and played small shows for 20 years.

While he was known to work as a James Brown impersonator, Bradley eventually signed with Daptone Records, where he became known for his funky yet soulful R&B style.

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Blogaroo: Day 15: Trampled by Turtles

22 May

Trampled by Turtles, or TBT, is an indie folk band from Duluth Minnesota, composed of Dave Simonett on guitar, Tim Saxhaug on bass, Dave Carroll on banjo, Erik Berry on mandolin and Ryan Young on fiddle. (Yeah, I know…you’re already having fun and you haven’t even heard them yet.)

The group hit it big with their first studio release in 2004, but their fifth album, Palomino, has remained on the Billboard Top 10 bluegrass charts for the past year.

They’re also pretty popular on the festi circuit.

The band has performed at  CoachellaStagecoachBumbershoot and Pickathon. They’ve performed at Telluride Bluegrass FestivalNewport Folk Festival and ROMP Roots and Branches. In addition to Bonnaroo, they are scheduled to play the Sasquatch FestivalLollapaloozaFirefly FestivalRock the Garden, All Good and Newport Folk.

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Blogaroo: “These wristbands are treasure. Keep them safe.”

22 May

Addam and I got a very special package in the mail today!!




Our Bonnaroo wristbands are in hand, and we are all but on our way! Fifteen days and counting!

“These wristbands are treasure. Keep them safe…Once your wristband is verified and fastened, you will be good to go. The sun will shine, the cherubs will sing, and the gates of Roo will open before you.” — Bonnaroo 2012 wristband guide.

Blogaroo: Day 16: Mac Miller

21 May

Mac Miller makes me feel old.

He was born in Pittsburgh in 1992 and has released two albums. He was one of 11 rappers featured in XXL’s Freshman Class of 2011, highlighting up-and-coming artists in the hip hop game. He has worked with Maroon 5Wiz Khalifa is his BFF and Donald Trump is calling him “the new Eminem.” Add Bonnaroo to the mix and he’s pretty much having the best year ever.

Miller is known for performing in a number of different styles, for his “psychedelic influences” and for penning deep lyrics. In true rap fashion, most of his songs focus on marijuana, women and living the dream, but he’s known to experiment within the genre — which any fan can appreciate.

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Blogaroo: Day 18: Fruit Bats

19 May

Fruit Bats, a rock band that got their start in 1997 Chicago, helped kick off the folk-rock craze that took off in the early 2000s. The group has changed a lot since it got its start, but singer/songwriter Eric Johnson has always been at the band’s core.

In addition to his work with Fruit Bats, in 2000 Johnson was an instructor at the Old Town School of Folk Music, led his own space-rock band called I Rowboat and was a guitarist in various groups — including Califone and The Shins. The Shins will also be appearing at Bonnaroo this year, so maybe the groups will team up for a song or two.

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Blogaroo: Day 20: Battles

17 May

Battles is an experimental rock band, founded in New York City in 2002 by Ian Williams of Don Caballero and Storm & Stress. The group currently includes Williams on guitar and keyboards, Lynx’s Dave Konopka on guitar and bass, and Helmet’s John Stanier on drums.

In its first 10 years the band has gained international attention.

Atlas was featured in the Media Molecule’ video game LittleBigPlanet and appears on the soundtrack for the second season of  Skins. In 2007 Battles was featured in UK’s The Skinny, where members spoke to the magazine about the making of Mirrored. The song Race : In and a remix of Atlas were used for car advertisements in the UK, Bad Trails was featured in the 2009 film Big Fan, The Line can be found on the Twilight Saga: Eclipse soundtrack.

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Blogaroo: Day 21: Little Dragon

16 May

Little Dragon is an electronic band that originated in Gothenburg, Sweden in 1996. It features Yuikimi Nagano on vocals and percussion, Erik Bodin on drums, Fredrik Källgren Wallin on bass and Håkan Wirenstrand on the keyboard.

According to the information I have found, the group got its name due to the legendary tantrums Nagano was known for throwing in the recording studio.  She is quoted as saying that while the story is, “a little exaggerated, there is some truth in it.” Nagano said, “We’ve grown up a bit, and I realised you can’t have a fit every day because otherwise you won’t be able to stand each other.”

The band has toured Europe and in late 2009 it was chosen as one of Beyond Race Magazine’s “50 Emerging Artists,” resulting in a spot in the publication’s 11th issue and an exclusive online Q&A on the magazine’s site.

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Blogaroo 2012: My 15 most anticipated acts

15 May

It’s the most wonderful time of the year again, folks! Bonnaroo is less than a month away, and to celebrate I’m officially kicking off Blogaroo 2012 — highlighting the can’t miss acts of this festi season.

To begin this year’s countdown — I present to you the 15 acts I am most excited to see this summer.

But music is meant to be shared! Let me know what you think by leaving a comment or voting in the poll at the end of this post.

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Blogaroo 2012: The Lineup

16 Feb

The Bonnaroo lineup was released on Valentine’s Day, and from where I’m sitting it’s looking pretty solid. I’m still hoping that Jack White will make the list, but who are are you most excited to see so far?


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“If music be the food of love, play on.”
— William Shakespeare, English poet and playwright (1564-1616).