Posts Tagged ‘Gary Tanin’


August 10, 2018

David Fitzpatrick puts his name on the line for Parachutes And Hurricanes. Photo courtesy the internet

I love Gary Tanin. I really do. He’s been a fan of this blog way back before it was this blog. The history between us goes back to when I was writing for Princeton Record Exchange. I don’t recall what review I wrote that garnered his attention there, but he came along when I decided to blow off the other two stores I was writing for and forge out on my own.

For that I will always be grateful. But I fear this is where all good things must end.

All throughout this blog’s history, I have made every effort to look for the unusual, the out-of-the-way, off-the-beaten path stuff. Having first been born and raised in the NJ/NY area, I was influenced by that fringe that was all around then. Free radios in cars blasted new and unusual stuff with the birth of FM radio. WPLJ, so on etc. So while I was getting the fresh info and news and new music, my family was imploding and my mother had to take me away from all that culture…



March 30, 2018

You can’t beat a personalized copy of the new Sam Llanas CD Return Of The Goya, Part 1. In the name of political correctness, no international grocery aisle comments please. Photo courtesy Sam Llanas

It’s great to have Sam Llanas back on the blog! We’ve covered Sam since his debut solo album 4a.m. which remains one of my favorite pieces of work to date. I think I need to break it out again as I need to get a lot of things in the studio done (midi up live tracks, finish writing the last song on my last album…) and I LOVE to work late at night.

Llanas first came to my attention through Gary Tanin, whom I became associated with through the Roger Powell album Blue Note Ridge and then again with Fossil Poets. (Don’t go on your anti-Utopia 2018 reunion tour, Jeff, we know Powell isn’t participating and you doubt replacement Ralph Schuckett, while an extraordinary player with Todd Rundgren’s Utopia, this tour promotes the newly released box set of material with Powell, NOT Schuckett, the harmonic sensibilities employed by Powell will be long lost and they are an integral charm with the REAL Utopia. Don’t be fooled by imitations! Save it for another blog…) Then Tanin had the idea of getting me involved with both Llanas and a project Llanas became involved in, a two man show with Doug Vincent detailing Vincent’s own tragic encounter with addiction and suicide, punctuated by profound performances by Llanas from his solo works.

I identified with the author of the show, Doug Vincent, so much, it became a labor of love to promote his show A Day For Grace. Check the blog search field to see if I migrated them from the syndication to the new site. I am pretty sure they are there. You can also search Sam Llanas, and see all the reviews in our history. Needless to say, Llanas is a favorite here. A particular favorite of ours here at the blog is the Absinthe album. Those songs are so dark, they immediately draw in a death hag like me (even learned a couple of tunes on guitar, fun stuff!).



October 1, 2015
King Crimson Live In Argentina 1994 from the Thrak tour. Photo courtesy DGMLive.

King Crimson Live In Argentina 1994 from the Thrak tour.

I don’t much care for revisionism. Yet I get sucked into it time after time. I posted on the accompanying Facebook page for this blog,, that the there will be changes on this blog. Well here they are. I tried to ‘play nice’ as the saying went. I tried to appease all the people who submitted work for me to review. I found myself watering down my utter loathing for certain acts and more importantly I was allowing my disdain for certain acts to dictate my rate of reviews. Yet after making promises to people to review music outside my comfort zone, and having those people demand edits, the not bother to repost my efforts in an effort to promote a show for these people, I’M OUT!



December 10, 2014
Sometimes, the life of a blogger can be hazardous to that blogger's health. Photo by Lynn Vala

Sometimes, the life of a blogger can be hazardous to that blogger’s health. Photo by Lynn Vala

My WordPress screen prompts me by asking ‘what’s on your mind’? I guess I need to vent, come clean, explain why I have been absent from this blog for months now. Also to explain why a story was posted and then pulled almost in the same day. The story is long and convoluted so I will try to explain why I took a self-imposed sabbatical from this page.

But first, a bit of background on why this is personal to me.

Integrity has always been important to me. I have been asked to leave many bands because my integrity prevented me from playing over-exposed bands/songs such as Creedence Clearwater, or other bands I felt were not challenging enough to my ability as a player or were too commonplace for my liking. The more popular a musical genre, the less I find it appealing other than the finely crafted pop pieces from acts such as Hall & Oates, Foster The People, etc.

As I became older I found that bands who challenged the perceived norm of popular music or who went against the 4/4 popular time signatures lead to new vistas and horizons for me as a musician. Masters such as Frank Zappa, King Crimson and mid to latter era Todd Rundgren and or Utopia. Acts that really had musical meat for me, something I could dig my teeth into both as a listener and a musician.

So when I begin this blog I’ve virtually went into it with little to no restriction other than those imposed upon me by the webmasters. Limitations such as no obscenities, formatting, no artist bashing, promoting record sales… you can see how this would get tedious. Sad to say, one of the better things to ever happen to me might have been when Princeton Record Exchange dissolved it’s blog.  At that point I had to make a decision: Shit or get off the pot. I guess I shit because I am still on the pot!

The decision was made, I would start my own blog, go my own way and blaze my own path. Or so I thought. With this freedom also came a certain perverted perk. People would approach me and ask if I would want to promote either their own disc or an artist they represented. This is where things started to go downhill…



September 2, 2014
This wise owl knows what's good.  Llanas' new disc is a no brainer, it's great!  Photo courtesy Daystorm Music

This wise owl knows what’s good. Llanas’ new disc is a no brainer, it’s great! Photo courtesy Daystorm Music

Sam Llanas has returned to the market place with his newest effort, The Whole Night Thru. His last album, the live compilation 4/5 Live was merely a teaser as to what Llanas and company were up to. That company is comprised of some vital, undiscovered talent from the Wisconsin cheese belt. I have personally witnessed the soul and expression drummer Ryan Schiedermayer puts into Llanas’ music, having seen the duo live at the Rockwood Music Hall in NYC a couple of years ago. But this album features a full band, not just the duo of Llanas and Schiedermayer. Joining them is lead guitarist Sean Williamson, and bassist Matthew “El” Turner.

With the release of The Whole Night Thru, Llanas bids a mournful good bye to the BoDeans, a move that, as Llanas mentions in a recent press release, is a recalcitrant one. Llanas clarifies the situation: “I think people have this misconception that I left The BoDeans to pursue a solo career, but that’s just not the truth. I never wanted the break up of the BoDeans. It broke my heart.”

Been there…

But as a recent convert to Llanas’ music, and only having heard small snippets of BoDeans tracks, I can tell that even though it was not Llanas’ preference to have the BoDeans disintegrate, he took with him the heart, the soul, and the spirit of his music.

Let’s check out some of that heart/soul/spirit…



April 7, 2014
The cover of Rob Fetters latest offering. Don't bother looking for it at your local mall record store, this is way above their radar.

The cover of Rob Fetters latest offering. Don’t bother looking for it at your local mall record store, this is way above their radar. Photo courtesy Baby Ranch

It must be an amazing personal feat to be able to call upon some of your home-base contemporaries to make guest appearances all over your new solo CD.  It is most likely an even easier feat to accomplish when you have a client list from your commercial jingle-writing career that reads like a veritable Who’s Who of Fortune 500 companies.

Rob Fetters is one of the pre-eminent guitar slingers who hales from the Mid-West.  So when someone with not one but TWO main websites ( for his commercial jingle writing career, and for the musical artist career), a musician history including playing with Adrian Belew in a band called the Bears (SUCH an underrated band, they need more exposure because you folks are truly missing out) as well as playing in a band called the Psychodots with Bears members Bob Nyswonger (bass) and Chris Arduser (drums).  There are more bands on Fetters resume that could easily come and go in front of someone’s line of sight, more impressive perhaps is the list of advertising clients Fetters has delivered product to.  Heavy hitters from varied industries such as ABC, Disney, Nickelodeon, PBS, FOX Sports, Olay, Walmart, Luvs, Scripps, MicroSoft, Chiquita, Ohio Lottery, Adventure Aquarium, Penn Station, Dayton Daily News, Frische’s, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, LaRosa’s, Sea World, P&G, Mercy Health Crest, Fit, Milestone, Tri-Health Hospitals, StarKist, TXU Energy, West Virginia Lottery, Airheads, Newport Aquarium, Intel, First Data, US Bank, Hasbro, Roto Rooter, Totes, Kentucky Lottery, Pitney Bowes, Long John Silvers, Cincinnati USA, The United Way, Contemporary Arts, Cincinnati Bell, Drees Homes, Kellogg’s, United Dairy Farmers…

Just to name a few.



December 15, 2013
Today's version of Otto and the Elevators has a unique feature; a compact disc in a sleeve on the cover.  For those of us without turntables.  It sits as an add-on to the shrink wrap, so you don't have to open up the package with the valuable cargo inside.  Photo courtesy Gary Tanin

Today’s version of Otto and the Elevators has a unique feature; a compact disc in a sleeve on the cover. For those of us without turntables. It sits as an add-on to the shrink wrap, so you don’t have to open up the package with the valuable cargo inside. Photo courtesy Gary Tanin

It has been a long time since this blog has been active.  We took some time off after the passing of grunge god Lou Reed.  We were given time to pause to think about our allotment on this mortal coil.  Life is too short.  Life is too short to dwell on things that affect us negatively.  Things that present themselves or force themselves on us.  Things that, plain old speaking, we just don’t want to deal with.

For me, that was the new Nine Inch Nails album, Hesitation Marks.

I had begun the review when Reed passed.  My thoughts were not about what Reznor had done on this new album, or how it was more or less a rehash of what he had done before he shuttered Nine Inch Nails around 2009.  I was even slated to see Nine Inch Nails, but most of the parties involved were pretty much ambivalent about the event, so we chose to bypass it.  From what we heard about the show afterward, it was mostly material we had seen live with a FEW new songs inserted into a tired, and over-used set list.

I now regret not catching a Reed show.  It must have been something to see this stalwart musician ply his art onstage.  I had seen his widow, Laurie Anderson a number of times, including the shows Anderson played in New York City nine days after 9/11 at the Town Hall (which yielded a phenomenal double CD live disc).  Her shows were always entertaining, amusing and sometimes haunting.

So when faced with the arduous task of trying to analyze Reznor’s Nine Inch Noise album, it just seemed futile and defeatist.   My heart wasn’t in it.

With Reed (and a few days later, his mother) now passed, and Anderson grieving the loss of Reed, Reed’s mother and her dog Lolabelle, Anderson is gearing up her tour/performance schedule.  It would be grand to see her again, and hopefully get the opportunity to tell her how much she means to us, and how much her late husband meant to all us musicians and music fans.

Before it’s too late.

In the spirit of not being too late, let’s make sure we cover a different act out of the Milwaukee Wisconsin area.  Led by long time BouleBlog associate Gary Tanin, Otto and the Elevators is an album that was recorded in 1973, released in 1975.  The release in 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of the recording.  Not sure how the 40th anniversary of the release will be handled…


Doug Vincent’s Play A Day for Grace Returns to Stage Left Studio September 19 thru 22 Sam Llanas and Doug Vincent Co-Star; Llanas to Open with Solo Acoustic Set

September 17, 2013
Doug Vincent (foreground) re-enacts his infamous run-in with his childhood nemesis while Sam Llanas (background) accompanies him with songs written in 1998 and 2011.  Photo by Gary Dineen courtesy Daystorm Music and Gary Tanin

Doug Vincent (foreground) re-enacts his infamous run-in with his childhood nemesis while Sam Llanas (background) accompanies him with songs written in 1998 and 2011. Photo by Gary Dineen courtesy Daystorm Music and Gary Tanin

New York, NY, August 19Doug Vincent’s autobiographical play, A Day For Grace will return to New York City on September 19th for a four-night engagement from September 19 thru 22  at Stage Left Studio, 214 W 30thStreet, 6th floor Roots rock legend Sam Llanas (formerly of BoDeans) and playwright Doug Vincent share the stage in the heartwarming play of hope and triumph over adversity. Set to original music by Llanas, A Day for Grace recounts Vincent’s emotional roller-coaster journey into first-time fatherhood as he chases parental shadows and the demons of his turbulent youth in small town Virginia to find the light for his unborn child. Llanas will also open each show with an intimate solo acoustic set of old favorites, new and unreleased music. All performances are at 7:30pm. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling the box office at 212.838.2134.    

The play unfolds when unforeseen complications during his daughter’s birth propel Vincent’s emotions to pour out of him to confront the demons of his past – shifting back and forth between little league angst and the relationship with his alcoholic and suicidal father to present day events.

Lanas performs the soulful music from his 1998 solo album A Good Day to Die, which underscores Vincent’s 10 different character portrayals and serves as the drama’s emotional touchstones and enthralling Greek Chorus. Although he wrote the lyrics 15 years earlier and long before the play was created, nearly every song matches a scene from the play.

“It’s almost impossible to watch the show without marveling at the obvious synchronicity inherent in this collaboration. The unique interplay between the music and monologue is mesmerizing,” says director Gary Tanin.

Both Vincent and Llanas used their creative talents as a way to heal from the tragic loss of a family member to suicide.  At their first meeting, both men were shocked to learn how serendipitously the two art forms blended together to create the compelling musical drama.  A Day for Grace touches on many contemporary social issues –- bullying, alcoholism, dysfunctional families and mental illness — all leading risk factors for suicide, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

 “We hope that our play will continue to not only entertain, but convey its message of hope, healing, and triumph over adversity to the widest audience possible,” says Vincent.

A Day for Grace had its initial limited engagement run in 2012, where it played to sold-out audiences.  The play was first introduced to New York audiences last year at Stage Left Studio, where it was developed.  This year, a re-tooled A Day for Grace, which began a multi-city national tour in August, will visit Berryville, VA, Denver, CO, Milwaukee, WI  and Chicago, IL before returning to New York City, where it will complete its tour at Stage Left Studio for multiple performances plus a producers’ showcase.

A co-production of Stage Left Studio and Boulder StoryHealers, ‘A Day for Grace’ was developed at Stage Left Studio in New York City. Boulder StoryHealers is a project of the Colorado Nonprofit Development Center, a nonprofit charity under Section 501c3 .


AUTHOR’S NOTE:  I was slated to give this production personal coverage for the Friday and Saturday night shows during this run.  Unfortunately, the fates have conspired to keep me away from this production.  Faithful readers would wonder why I am interested in going to see this show again.  I have it on good authority that changes have been made to both the script and the music for this tour of the show.  Additionally, Llanas will do a solo acoustic set before the play begins.  That is always worth the price of admission!  So even for you folks who caught this last time, I urge you to go see it again.

This time, the topics of the show are even more poignant and personal to me.  I did just recently lose three family members and a pet, albeit none by suicide, but loss is loss.  All three family members lived at the same residence, which is the ultimate definition of an empty nest.  The pet, succumbed to hyperthyroidism in my hands this past Saturday the 14th.  I would be an emotional casualty if I were to attend this show.  Sometimes people like to cry at highly emotional art.  If you are this kind of person who rejuvenates themselves at the hand of highly personal artistic endeavors, this is again, a must-see show for you to cleanse your soul, refresh your spirit and laugh at life’s foibles.

Tell them Queeten sent you…


August 24, 2013
Dynamo performer Llanas (left) belts-it-out at the Rockwood Music Hall, NYC, Sept. 2012.  Accompanied by long-time percussionist Ryan Schiedermayer (right).  Photo by Lynn Vala

Dynamo performer Llanas (left) belts-it-out at the Rockwood Music Hall, NYC, Sept. 2012. Accompanied by long-time percussionist Ryan Schiedermayer (right). Photo by Lynn Vala

As someone who has been on the bandwagon since the play A Day For Grace made its debut at Stage Left Studios in Manhattan last September, I have taken slack, I have taken criticism, I have steered through harsh criticisms leveled at me through this blog, Facebook and my business email.  One trick pony, in their pocket, too one-sided.

Now it’s time to share this coverage, and hope that others take up the crusade as I have.  This play has personal meaning to myself as well as the team behind the play.  All of us have been touched by topics within the play.

On Sunday, September 22, on the last day of the New York run, again at Stage Left Studios, at 11:00 a.m., Sam Llanas, Doug Vincent and Gary Tanin will be on the Dave Marsh “Kick Out The Jams” radio show on Sirius XM Radio, The Spectrum (Channel 28).

To the established readers of this blog, you already know the sensitive, real-life topics discussed in the play.  They are dark and sordid.  For those of you who are new to BouleBlog (and the demographics suggest readership has increased recently, THANK YOU) a brief sysnopsis: (more…)


August 23, 2013
The perfect album for an overnight of carousing, remorse and reflection.

The perfect album for an overnight of carousing, remorse and reflection.

AUTHOR’S NOTE: In light of the recent post by yours truly about the upcoming Sam Llanas Four/Five Live Volume 1 CD, we felt it would be appropriate to repost one of the last entries in our syndicated blog.  Many references were made to this album, 4A.M. in that review.  So we wanted to make it available again for review.  Another reason I wanted another crack at this disc is to right a wrong, and mention the crack staff that made this disc.  On vocals and acoustic guitar we have Sam Llanas.  Percussion is handled by Ryan Schiedermayer.  Guitars and harmonica by Terry Vittone.  Bass by Matt Turner.  Accordian by Bukka Allen.  String Sections by Gary Tanin.

There, I feel better about this.  Now, to our Friday Flashback!

If you follow this blog, last time we promoted Sam Llanas’ 4AM with a press release and some bio info.  This time, we take on the album itself.  Now the “concept”, if you will, of this album is the adventures that take place after hours.  Llanas claims to have written many of the tunes late at night.  I identify with that as I do my best work at night (post 11pm).  So I went out on a limb this time and gave it an initial listen after 1am.  I’m too old to make it to 4am without chemical stimulants, and I knock off the caffeine at 5pm.

Much less anything stronger.

But I felt it best to get the full effect of this disc’s concept, if it was listened to at the same time it was composed, performed, etc.  I was right.  This is late night listening at its best!


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