Tag Archives: Tarbox Ramblers

Flashlite #684

Today we dig deep into the new roots and blues rock tunes. John Mayall is 88 and still keeps putting out fantastic albums, we check out the latest one. Tarbox Ramblers have a new EP and Leyla McCalla has a new single. James Hunter has a new album. We introduce new artists for us: Grey River and The Smoky Mountain from Greece, Joanna Connor from Chicago, Ilana Katz from the Appalachians, Kris Wiley from California, Big Daddy Wilson from Germany. Also check out a great new version of Junior Wells song Messing With The Kid by Albert Castiglia Band, coming to us directly from a new tribute to Todd Rundgren.

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Mississippi Allstars – Bumpin’;
Kris Wiley – Inside Out;
John Mayall – The Sun Is Shining Down (feat. Carolyn Wonderland);
Handsome Jack – Roll It;
Dave Gahan and Soulsavers – Strange Religion;
Joanna Connor – Earthshaker;
Leyla McCalla – Fort Dimanche;
The Kropotkins – Truckstop girls;
Ilana Katz Katz – Downtown With The Devil;
Green River and The Smoky Mountain – Truth or Dare;
Julie Christensen – Fire At The End Of The World;
Gabriella Cohen – Son Of A Gun;
Michael Tarbox – Goin’ Down To Georgia;
James Hunter Six – Heartbreak;
The Excitements – Mr. Landlord;
Endless Boogie – Disposable Thumbs;
Albert Castiglia Band – Messin With the Kid (Bonus Track);
Big Daddy Wilson – Meatballs;
Elly Winninger – Leavin.

Flashlite #614

Ghost Funk Orchestra

The Resonars are back with the new record and so are Ghost Funk Orchestra who entertained us with a great album A Songs for Paul earlier this year. We check out new music from Leigh Gregory and Michael Tarbox (ex Tarbox Ramblers), both stars from some of the earliest Little Lighthouse episodes all the way back to 2001. We also go back to Mooner from Chicago and Sunfruits from Australia for new tunes. We introduce A. Swayze and The Ghosts from Tasmania and Bette Smith as new names at the show.
Remember two great volumes of early garage metal entitled Jobcentre Rejects? Third and fourth volumes are out and they are just as great. We sample all four volumes with one song from each.

Manarays – Comin’ Home;
Track 4 – Freetime;
Greensleeves – Fire;
Frenzy – Thanx For Nothing;
Warrior – Suicide;
The Resonars – Never Been Down Before;
A. Swayze & the Ghosts – Suddenly;
Cheap Trick – Just Got Back;
Cocktails – Bun E. Carlos;
Sunfruits – Mushroom Kingdom;
Mooner – Happily;
The Nude Party – Times Move On;
Lelee – Izvan sebe;
Ghost Funk Orchestra – Walk Like A Motherfucker;
Ghost Funk Orchestra – Fuzzy Logic;
Bette Smith – I Felt It Too ;
Disheveled Cuss – Wanna Be My Friend;
2nd Grade – Velodrome;
Leigh Gregory – This Time It’s For Real;
Michael Tarbox – He’d Be A Diamond.

Michael Tarbox – Works and Days

Michael Tarbox - Works and DaysMichael Tarbox used to lead a great band called Tarbox Ramblers. Hailing from the Boston area, Tarbox Ramblers were the leaders of the new blues revival for the past 15 years with a blend of academic and heartfelt approach that won our hearts. The first album for Rounder Records in 2000 was a furious collection of authentic and raw blues which relied on the primitive traditions on North Mississippi blues and Appalachian folk. The second album also for Rounder A Fix Back East was a step towards rock roots, split produced by one and only Jim Dickinson and Paul Q. Kolderie who we know best from his work with Morphine. Then, a long decade with sporadic limited edition discography followed.

Through all that time, Michael Tarbox all but stood idle. He toured with a revolving line up the country multiple times, even entered the studio a few times. The songs were ready, but the band had a chronic problem with drummers. Without the record label, struggling to keep the band together, and perhaps some other reasons, Michael decided to crowdfund his next record last year, without much help from the outside. The new album, Works and Days is the outcome.

Without pretensions, the record is simply imagined as a collection of songs, without a particular theme that connects them. This is understandable, the record has been conceived over a large period of time, but the variety actually contributes to the overall quality of this new record. In the long period since 2004, I can only imagine that there was a lot of songs to choose from, but Michael and his producer friend Chris Rival have good ears and experience to identify those songs that worked particularly well in the studio at the time of recording.

In essence, the record is an emotional aggregate of many changes that Michael went through. The friendships that were evolving, struggles that they were going through and the arrival of his daughter. But the good news is that the relief is in the art. This truly comes through in this record.

Sound-wise, the new record dwells even more into rock territory. While the first record was almost entirely filled with traditionals, the new record, much like the second one is filled with original songs. From wild rocking Hey Mister Starlight over Lou Reed-like The Night Train To Chelsea to soft and almost spoken word title song The Tower of Works and Days, there is a little bit of every rock’n’roll taste on this record.The final result is intimate and exciting, and for me at least, long awaited record that will stick around for quite some time.

First published on rockxs.com.

Mark Lanegan: Here Comes That Weird Chill

(Written in January 2004). The year just started and we already got an album that will definitely play an important role in the year’s best selection! This is a new one by Mark Lanegan and it’s louder and stronger than any Screaming Trees album, let alone his solo albums. It’s rough, it’s tough, it’s experimental, but still it rock and moves just like it should. His voice is still recognizable even though it often distorted by various studio effects. Drums are raw and guitars cut like razor blades. This is for the first time in years that Lanegan doesn’t collaborate with his long time companion Mike Johnson, so that in itself indicates a significant stylistic move. This is a unique represent of this loud new blues style that can be found for example on Christ Whitley’s album Terra Incognita, or Tarbox Ramblers, but it also has a favor of raw garage sound such as we know from Detroit and Memphis scenes – but perhaps in a little nicer package plus Tom Waits poetics. The album runs for only 30 minutes, but that’s cool – it just makes you wanna play it again. New cd-albums normally last too long anyway. LPs used to be much more carefully thought of. They say this is only a teaser before the full length album comes out! Woohoo!
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