After a meteoric rise from obscurity to a national touring band, Grateful Shred has made the most of its time in the spotlight. The initial lineup, featuring Clay Finch and Sam Blasucci alongside Shred core two Austin McCutchen and Dan Horne, woke the Grateful Dead cosmos with a unique laid-back harmony driven sound. The band literally went from playing the Shakedown Street vendor area prior to Dead and Company shows to touring the United States.
You can add Ghost Light bandmates Tom Hamilton and Holly Bowling to the list of musicians who will release some out of the box music because of covid. The guitarist and pianist are set to release Lacuna an almost hour-long improvisational journey that took place at Hamilton’s studio while the world was shut down for the pandemic.
Orange Blossom Revue will return to Lake Wales, Florida for its 7th annual event from December 3-4, 2021. Headlined by Blackberry Smoke and the Wood Brothers, the festival will take place at Lake Wailes Park.
Caleb Stine is an American artist known for his performance, songwriting, and visual art. Flying just below the mainstream radar, Stine has released a dozen albums, opened shows for Jason Isbell, Bombino, and Sam Bush, acted Off-Broadway, and drawn storyboards for John Waters, and he has now released his 12th album, “The Life and Times of a Handyman.”
As Covid-19 ravaged the globe, the concert industry was hit harder than most. Touring musicians, their crews, music venues…few were spared the hardship of a world that just shut down. As vaccines became readily available, though, there was a glimmer of hope; the industry adapted, and music fans once again were able to watch the bands they love. 2021 Mempho Music Fest, headlined by Widespread Panic and the Avett Brothers, returned the first weekend of October and provided a cathartic release for bands and fans alike.
Widespread Panic has made Memphis a regular tour stop since the band got together. According to the Panic resource “Everyday Companion Online,” their first official show in the Bluff City was in April, 1989. Since then, they’ve seen local crowds swell from a couple of hundred to thousands. After 30-plus years of touring, WSP recently made a conscious decision to cut back their schedule, to “pass the baton” to a younger collection of musicians looking to expand their careers.
WSP returns to Memphis to headline Mempho Music Fest on October 1 and 2, and will hit the road for several multi-night residencies after that. Slideandbanjo.com’s Marty Halpern caught up with Panic percussionist Domingo “Sunny“ Ortiz to discuss the band’s past, present, and future.
For musicians, the Covid-19 pandemic led to numerous artistic endeavors that would not have seen the light of day. From EPs to artwork, musicians had the time to finish projects that had been on the back burner. None of those projects compare in depth and quality to what Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey (JFJO) founding member Reed Mathis created.
Prior to the covid outbreak, there wasn’t a band more certain to explode in popularity than Grateful Shred. Founded on a whim in 2016, the rotating crew of California crooners found a niche with their take on the early 70’s era Grateful Dead sound.
When Langhorne Slim took the stage at Atlanta’s Terminal West on August 19, it was a momentous occasion. For many in the crowd, this was the first “real” concert during the pandemic, and you got the vibe it was one of the band’s first as well. Slim (Sean Scolnick), Paul Defiglia (stand-up bass) and Mat “Twain” Davidson (slide guitar, banjo, violin) gave 100% energy, and expressed genuine appreciation for the ability to simply perform for an audience.
Leftover Salmon has been creating music for over a generation., and their accomplishments have let them travel the world, playing in front of hundreds of thousands of fans. Never one to phone it in, the band has released “Brand New Good Old Days,” an impressive collection of songs that sets the current course the band is heading.