Archive for July, 2008

Of course y’all know the Dance With Me vid’s been up on the VH1/EmptyVee oligopoly’s playlists for a couple of weeks now, and for an indie release, that is rare. But of course, we could help kick them up in rotation a bit too. So why not take a minute to plug ’em on the VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown poll? If you don’t see the title you can write it in. It’s easy and who knows? Your vote might be the one that gets the band out to one more lost soul. And while you’re at it, here’s still more behind-the-scenes clips from the Dance With Me video shoot. After that, you gotta see the long-lost, thanks-to-a-major-label-mess, video for the amazing “Fireflies,” with Rachel Yamagata, from Rhett’s “The Believer.” Damn, that’s a fine song.

And whaddya mean you haven’t seen that great video podcast the guys shot for Spinner.com? Git yer rear end over the and get it, because it smokes so hard – “Early Morning” especially – that the EPA is gonna ban that thing! Write the wisenheimers at Rolling Stone: “Old 97s drop by the AOL Spinner studio with a sheaf of new songs and a couple of new nuggets. Whole room melts in the face of Rhett Miller’s overpowering hotness.” Uhm, that’s what they said, OK? And here’s still another great in-studio performance, this one cut in Austin during release-week at the studios of Texas Music Matters on KUT.

Also, an old flame of Ken Bethea (don’t ask 😉 reports that Rhett Miller last week sat down for an interview with Terry Gross for upcoming episode of NPR’s Fresh Air, so stay tuned for that as well.

In addition, the 97’s have confirmed they’ll be returning to the 504 area code, October 24 – 26, for the tenth annual Voodoo Experience in the Big Easy, joining a huge bill featuring the likes of R.E.M., Death Cab, Panic At the Disco, and Sharon Jones. Check out the Tour Dates page for several new show and in-store listings for the Old 97’s, Rhett Miller, and a Murry Hammond date in Chicago. (Part of a Murry-tour?)

As for yer web-side grab-bag, Here’s 20 questions for Rhett Miller from a Virginia paper, while a Milwaukee TV reporter finally finds out “What’s the deal with Rhett’s metal tooth?” Plus great reviews from a reporter at a Vancouver show, and a newbie in Seattle. The common thread? Dancing. It something I’ll never forget seeing either, amongst the crowd at my first Old 97’s show back in ’94. Sometimes you just can’t help it. Dancing, I mean. Finally, the 97’s snagged the cover story in an exceptionally fine piece in the new edition of Texas Music magazine. Check out the link, but if you’re in these parts, please head down to your local bookstore and snag a copy too. There’s too many music mags biting the dust these days, and Texas Music is one I’d like to keep around.

Plus, on top of the new CD’s from the Murry and the 97’s, one of my favorite new discs of the year is, Getting to the Point Is Beside It, the new one from I Love Math, featuring John Dufilho, Jason Garner, Philip Peeples, and Andy Lester. Of course ILM’s been out on tour with the 97’s, but even if you haven’t caught them live, at least be sure to check out the album. The thing is getting raves, among them this from the folks at CMJ:

Since I Love Math does feature members of Old 97’s, Deathray Davies, the Paper Chase and Apples In Stereo… Imagine those bands’ most sunny pop moments, but now imagine them as if they’d been recorded like they’re trying to sneak in the session in a basement so as not to wake up the wife and kids upstairs. It’s got that post-party years vibe to it, but maybe not if the party is a fine, friendly, September sun-setting, back porch, mid-priced Vintner’s Blend-tipping get-together.

It’s just great great music for kick back days, and if you haven’t heard it yet, you’re missing out.

Finally and maybe best of all, it seems Murry’s I Don’t Know Where I’m Going But I’m On My Way is going to get a proper national release! And a good thing too. Who except the most cynical hipster can’t love it when others come to love music you love too? – frank

First up, thanks to Michael, Jefe, and Jennifer for keeping the lights on around here while I’ve been busy with family, work, and vacation. Next up, if you’re in Texas or hereabouts (and really, why wouldn’t anyone at least be thinking about being here? 😉 why not head down to your local indie bookstore and pick up a new copy of Texas Music, whose cover is graced by you-know-who. The Dallas Observer, on their terrific DC9 at Night music blog, notes that Blame It On Gravity is now the Old 97’s highest charting album ever, on track to become their best-selling ever, and is still comfortably ensconced in the Top 40 of Billboard’s Indie Albums chart.

Not bad after fifteen years, eh?

Also, as Michael mentioned, while VH1 and other MTV networks have picked up the video for “Dance With Me,” some fans (read: “me”) have wondered about the decision to show so little of… well… the Old 97’s. Never fear, it seems the guys are down with that call; and seeing as how this will easily be their most-watched video ever, it would seem that call was OK, it not definitely the best one.

Finally, having missed every chance at catching the guys since this past NYE in Dallas, I will be at the Atlanta show on 7/22. Seeing as how I report to work in ATL on the 23rd. Anyhow, anyone out there who’ll be making that show, and who could use a frosty adult beverage in the process, please gimme a shout off-line. More soon, I promise. – frank