Music Tonight: A solid (and free!) Indie Rock double-bill at MOTR Pub tonight features two quality bands with a healthy dose of ’90s Indie influences evident — Athens, Ga.'s Witches and Florida's Holopaw. Witches' dirty but warm sound (which reminds me a little of Cincy heroes Wussy) is on glorious display on the band's 2011 debut full-length, Forever. Check out the track "Creatures of Nature" by clicking the arrow above. Holopaw put out its self-titled debut on SubPop in 2003 following the release of Ugly Casanova's Sharpen Your Teeth, which was co-written/performed by Modest Mouse's Isaac Brock and Holopaw's John Orth. Holopaw, which mixes progressive experimentalism and captivating Art Pop, now records for Bakery Outlet Records (their most recent full-length was 2009's Oh Glory Oh Wilderness), also home to Witches' debut. Below, check out the official video for the Holopaw track "Curious," from its 2005 SubPop swan song, Quit +/or Fight. —-
• Toubab Crewe isn't some weird 2 Live Crew tribute band — they are an instrumental quintet of white dudes from North Carolina who are heavily influenced by the instrumental music of West Africa, as well as Rock, Blues and other Roots stylings. CityBeat writer Brian Baker says, "If Phish had been wordlessly inspired by Mama Africa, rural Mississippi, Haight Ashbury and Malibu pier parties and jammed with passion, precision, wild abandon and a sense of the music’s heritage, they might have come close to the ethereal delight of Toubab Krewe." Read Brian's full preview here, then head to the Southgate House tonight at 9 p.m. to catch the band (and all of its exotic instruments) live with The Giving Tree (MPMF.11 performers). Admission is $16 at the door. Check the band out below in a clip from 2009's Bonnaroo festival.
(Leave your suggestions/promote yourself or your favorites by telling everyone about your favorite music event recommendations for the day in the comments below.)
Momentous Happenings in Music History for Sept. 15
On this day in 1990, Soft Rock/Adult Contemporary hitmaker Bruce Hornsby began filling in on keys for The Grateful Dead. It was a brave move — the keyboard position in the Dead was the equivalent of being named Al-Qaeda's "No. 2 guy" or Spinal Tap's new drummer. Hornsby became one of only two Grateful Dead keyboardists to not die before their time; he replaced Brent Mydland, who passed away from an overdose in July of 1990. The so-called "Curse of the Keyboards!" even extended to one of the Dead's most popular tribute bands when Dark Star Orchestra keysman Scott Larned died from heart failure while touring with the band in 2005.
Hornsby has remained in the news, especially lately. On the anniversary of Tupac Shakur's murder, he recently talked to LA Weekly about Tupac's heavy use of a sample from Hornsby's biggest hit, "The Way It Is," on the Rap icon's posthumous "Changes" track. Hornsby says he's a fan of Tupac's (and of the money the sample's use garnered). Here's the best part of the interview (read the full thing here):
"The senator in Virginia for years was Chuck Robb. My wife and I supported him, and got invited to his Christmas party in the late '90s, when Greatest Hits [featuring "Changes"] came out. My wife decided we should listen to it on the drive. We get to Robb's house, and there were a bunch of black parking attendants. We opened the car, and — I didn't know this — but the next song to come on was ["Hit Em Up"]. The timing was hilarious. Right when the brothers were ready to take the keys the line "I fucked your bitch/You fat motherfucker" came on. These guys fell out. They looked at me at first in horror, and then started laughing like crazy."
And Hornsby has also been making music news as an unlikely (and un-ironic — presumably) influence on super-hip Indie star Bon Iver. Can a Seals & Croft revival be far behind?
Born This Day: Musically-inclined artists born on Sept. 15 include Country singer Roy Acuff (1903); composer (or co-writer) of some of the biggest cute character/mascot anthems ever ("Here Comes Peter Cottontail," "Frosty the Snowman," "Smokey the Bear"), Jack Rollins (1906); longtime ABBA drummer Ola Brunkert (1946); Franz Ferdinand drummer Paul Thomson (1977); and guitarist for revolutionary Punk Rock band Bad Brains, Dr. Know (1958).
One of my greatest concert experiences occurred when I was 17 and had just started listening to Bad Brains. I didn't know a ton about the group, so when a bunch of friends were sitting around bored and hungover, we made a last second decision to head up to Bogart's to catch these "Bad Brains" in concert. We ended up watching the show totally slack-jawed, both by the sheer volume and power of the band and also singer H.R.'s antics. To this day, I'll never forget watching the dreadlocked vocalist explode on, around and off the stage. It may have become mythologized in my memory over time, but I still swear to whatever god you'd like that H.R. would stand flatfooted at the lip of the stage, then vault himself at least 10 feet straight up into the air and directly into the crowd. I'd never seen anything like it before or since.
So, in honor of Mr. Know (real name: Gary Miller), here's an early (pre-dreads!) live video from one of the greatest Punk bands ever.