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The Upper Crust give MS an indifferent sneer @ the Davis Square Theater - 9/29

Posted by Jonathan Donaldson September 27, 2012 10:18 PM

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[Photo: Jay Elliot]

Right down in Davis Square, some of the best rock & roll bands in Boston will be battling Multiple Sclerosis tonight (Sat 9/29) in the second night of Crash Safely--an annual Boston music scene fundraiser held this year at the Davis Square Theater (formerly Jimmy Tingle's theater) in Somerville. Organizers Amanda Nichols (who rocks triumphantly with MS) and Nick Blakey have upped the ante this year by bringing in court jesters Cotton Candy and none other than the most royalest Upper Crust who promise once and for all to vanquish this sulking beast of a disease even if they have to stay together for another 300 years. Sidewalk Driver, TRiPLE THiCK and Thick Shakes will be rocking with prominence as well.

I stepped into the court of the Upper Crust's Lord Bendover (2nd left) and this is what he had to say.

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Midriff Records and Boston Band Crush celebrate friendship and loyalty at Radio - 9/29

Posted by Jonathan Donaldson September 26, 2012 02:58 AM

Running a record label in 2012 is tough business. Especially when you are a two-man operation doing it on a shoe-string. More especially when you are focused on putting out music by bands and artists that you love. Most especially when no one is buying music anymore, and the value on 'talent' is perceived by some to be at an all-time low behind the ability to put pants in seats (look at the listings at some of Boston's bigger clubs. Not a perfect record).

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This brings us to Midriff records, who also might not have a perfect record in the double-A league of noisy indie-rock that they trade in. But try telling that to label-head Cameron Keiber. All year long, Keiber has been running a 10-year anniversary celebration of the label in the form of a monthly residency at Union Square's Radio--highlighting many of the bands that have graced Midriff's roster, including his own band, the Beatings, who released Midriff's first album Italiano in February 2002.

Previous installments in this residency have featured Midriff stalwarts Age Rings (R.I.P.), Greg Lyon and Louder My Dear. Tomorrow, Keiber has invited Boston Band Crush to help put together a special bill for the September installment of the Midriff residency, as the local unicorn lovers bring the Daily Pravda and Eski Esko to join Midriff's Eldridge Rodriguez (Keiber's post-Beatings project) and Midriff NYC friends, Relations.

I talked to Keiber about what the future holds for Midriff Records and what does it even mean to run a label in 2102 anyway.

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Move over David Byrne and St. Vincent - Will Dailey and Audrey Ryan @ Club Passim - 9/22

Posted by Jonathan Donaldson September 21, 2012 01:33 PM

While some pairings might seem less savory than others, it's a red sky at night for the pairing of Audrey Ryan and Will Dailey, who will play two shows at Club Passim tomorrow night (9/22). photo-1.JPG Ryan and Dailey share a hard drive to find a niche for themselves in the ever-expanding and complex singer-songwriter market. Dailey's last album, Will Dailey and the Rivals, was released in 2011, while Ryan's last album, Siren's, was released just this past June. In addition, Ryan published a book this last April, The Need to Be Heard, which features several interviews with notable music industry artists and figures about the struggle for a place in the world of music.

According to Ryan, the two independent songwriters met a couple of years ago after being asked to do an East Coast tour with the Brew, themselves big fans of both Ryan and Dailey. "Will and I really enjoyed playing/singing on each others songs and have done so ever since when we can," says Ryan. She and Dailey took to doing the odd cover here and there, before eventually sitting in on one another's tunes. It is an affinity echoed by Dailey, who remarks that working with Ryan has helped him open up to a new audience and vice versa. "In this town you can end up playing in the circle too often," says Dailey, who has not only encountered a new audience through this collision, but more importantly, new songs to love. "I'll definitely be doing (Ryan's) 'No Difference,' I can't see myself not doing that one."

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That's not Slash running down the street, that's the Zumix 3rd Annual Run the the Beat @ East Boston - 9/16

Posted by Jonathan Donaldson September 14, 2012 02:34 PM

Looking for something fun to do this Sunday, like, I dunno, dressing up like Gene Simmons and running 5 kilometers through the streets of East Boston? You can do that in life! This Sunday (9/16), ZUMIX will present its 3rd annual Run To The Beat 5K in East Boston (which travels Piers Park-Marginal Street).
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The charity run (where runners buy tickets to run) supports ZUMIX, an organization that provides free or affordable music and technology outlets for low-income Boston youth. Runners are encouraged to run in costume, or even as a group or supergroup. And while I think we can all agree that this is a good cause, let's not forget about the hilarity that would ensue seeing the Oak Ridge Boys running through the streets of East Boston in full on hillbilly gear. I'd pay to see you do that.


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New works in the art department at the Michael J. Epstein Memorial Library (Exclusive Track!) @ Out of the Blue Gallery - 9/14

Posted by Jonathan Donaldson September 11, 2012 11:50 PM

Inspiration is a funny thing in that it's entirely subjective. Surely classical cathedrals inspired the Sagrada Familia. That much we know.

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However, what if chocolate ice cream inspired the atomic bomb?

Maybe Oppenheimer was eating a cone on his way to the office and the tasty scoop inspired him to change the course of history.

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This brings us to the case of the famous Michael J. Epstein, who must have done something really great in order to have a memorial library named after him (ok, it's a band, and Epstein is in it). Epstein and company have undertaken a curiously cool project whereby they have worked with five local artists to create new illustrations and songs based on one another's work. The final results of these complex collaborations (read on for details) will be unveiled at an EP/art release show tomorrow (Friday) at Cambridge's Out of the Blue Gallery.

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Move over Slowpoke Rodriguez, Speedy Ortiz barrels into TT the Bears - 9/5

Posted by Jonathan Donaldson September 5, 2012 03:27 PM

Some of you might remember Slowpoke Rodriguez, slowest mouse in all of Mexico. Either way, it's not important considering other priorities in life. A simple picture should suffice.Mexican Boarders Still.JPG However, many of you might not know Boston's Speedy Ortiz--a rising indie rock group featuring former-New Yorker, Sarah (Sadie) Dupuis. In the great tradition of brainy rockers, Dupuis doubles as a student/faculty member in the English department at UMass Amherst. That said, I couldn't quite make out if she said that she wanted to be a Pynchon scholar or a Simpsons scholar. Yes, to be actually accurate, Speedy Ortiz are products of the Western Mass scene, but they've been playing in Boston so much since coming into being this past year that they deserve to be called honorary Allstonians. Tonight they'll be at TT's, followed by a Middle East show in October (10/12) and a Great Scott show in November (11/7). For sure, they will be a band to watch in 2013. Inbound Sounds had a chance to catch up with Dupuis on a break somewhere between updating her syllabus and breaking a guitar string. speedy ortiz.jpg
[photo: Steven Stover]

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About the author

Jonathan Donaldson is a Boston-based musician, writer, and second-generation music junkie. An Ohio native who moved to Boston in 1998, Jonathan's musical loves include R&B, psych, punk, bubblegum, country, electronic, More »

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