Posts Tagged ‘Lord Russ’

THE MUSICAL COMET THAT IS LORD RUSS RETURNS WITH FUTURISTIC VISIONS OF THE PAST. HAVE YOU HEARD???

July 17, 2017

The newest take on some established songs, done Lord Russ style! Photo courtesy Russ Brooks

Lord Russ has a past with this blog. That sounds so sordid, doesn’t it? But that ‘past’ is a good one! Lord Russ found me while I was still with Princeton Record Exchange. He took advantage of my open position that “if you have the balls to accept what someone who knows something about music has to say about yours, bring it!” and brought me his first delightful album Heir Of Mystery! Easily the best “indie” (in the truest sense of the word, Lord Russ’ neighbor, Mark Mulcahy and his band Miracle Legion roadied for themselves on their recent reunion tour, set up, tore down, and loaded out, here’s a band that’s been on TV, David Letterman, Adventures Of Pete and Pete, too numerous to list, having to roadie their own shows because that’s how the record industry is now) disc to come my way this year. The fortunate part of the Miracle Legion show was the availability of two new releases, two double live CDs, one from Miracle Legion, and one from Polaris. The difference being, no Ray Neal in Polaris, his place was filled by another Lord Russ neighbor, Henning Ohlenbusch who played lead guitar and allsorts. The CT/Mass music scene is a very intriguing one. If what Fatso Jetson leader Mario Lalli claims is correct, the High Desert/Wonder Valley scene is dead.

But I digress…

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THE END OF THE SILENCE, THE END OF THE IGNORANCE

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…

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PHOTOBLOG: DEAR MARK J. MULCAHY, WORLD CAFE LIVE LOVES YOU – 3-10-14

April 11, 2014
Mark Mulcahy wails on his trusty Epiphone.  Settle in for some amazing songs, stories and smiles.  Photo by Lynn Vala

Mark Mulcahy wails on his trusty Epiphone. Settle in for some amazing songs, stories and smiles. Photo by Lynn Vala

For all intents and purposes, I had retired from covering live shows.  My body is old and beaten, your average concert attendant is more concerned with getting drunk and being obnoxious as opposed to sitting and listening to the performer du jour.  After all, you are talking to someone who was actually kicked in the head during a Nine Inch Nails show!  Some inconsiderate booby was running in the row behind my seat and clocked me in the head with his leg!

This was many years ago, before NIN had become the joke that it is today.

But when I got word through Facebook that Mark Mulcahy was coming to one of my all-time favorite venues, World Cafe Live in Philadelphia, the prospect of seeing Mulcahy live was too overwhelming to pass up.  Retirement be damned!

My first course of action was to reach out to the accommodating folks at WCL, specifically one Danielle F.  For those who have a history with the club, I used to have a relationship with Lauren Squazzo who moved on to greener pastures (as if there are any greener pastures than working at a killer club that has an upstairs bar with a stage for local and up and coming performers as well as hosting children’s shows, but is also affiliated with and houses Drexel University’s WXPN radio and has a killer theater/restaurant/bar in the lower level that has hosted acts from John Wetton, Laurie Anderson, Todd Rundgren, Robert Fripp’s words and music tour, to date his last solo US tour, Adrian Belew, Adrian Belew’s Power Trio and Power Trio bassist Julie Slick, a Philly native, as well as more that I am forgetting).

Every good wish to Lauren, but Danielle is equally a joy to work with.

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THE REVIEW WE HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR! MARK MULCAHY RESURFACES AFTER SOME HARD TIMES. DEAR MARK J. MULCAHY, WE ALL LOVE YOU!

August 14, 2013
This disc is one that has been long anticipated by the fans fellow recording artists, and perhaps more people we don't even realize… yet!

This disc is one that has been long anticipated by the fans, fellow recording artists, and perhaps more people we don’t even realize… yet!

Art is often born of tragedy.  War memorials, natural disaster memorials, Van Gogh…  But some tragedies are needless, senseless. In 2008, Mulcahy lost his wife Melissa, who left behind two daughters.  An all star tribute album Ciao My Shining Star, The Songs Of Mark Mulcahy was released featuring covers of Mulcahy tunes by such notables as Thom Yorke, Frank Black, The National, Dinosaur Jr., Michael Stipe, Juliana Hatfield, Mercury Rev, David Berkeley and Frank Turner, which served as a benefit album for Mulcahy.

Before you get all critical, no I was not waiting for this review because of Ms. Mulcahy’s passing, but rather, I have been aching to put Mr. Mulcahy’s music into your ears.  He is truly an amazing songwriter, singer and overall presence.

This hasn’t been the first bit of hard luck Mulcahy has faced.  His break-through band, Miracle Legion, couldn’t catch a break with the help of the entire Red Sox outfield roster.  They had signed to fledgling label Morgan Creek.  If you are asking why that name sounds familiar, it is because Morgan Creek also operated a movie distribution/production company.  As the band built up steam despite the exodus of various members of the rhythm section such as Jeff Wiederschall, Joel Potocsky, Steven West, final Miracle Legion players Scott Boutier and Dave McCaffrey went on to form Polaris with Mulcahy to be house band for the Nickelodeon show The Adventures Of Pete And Pete.  For one episode A Hard Day’s Pete, Ray Neal rejoined the band for a cameo appearance playing the Polaris tune “Summerbaby”.

But Neal departed the music business after getting a true spoonful of the corruption and deceit that were rampant in the final few years of the music industry’s hay day.  You see, Miracle Legion were the real deal, often compared to R.E.M., Mulcahy’s lyrics were far more impassioned, far more literate than anything Michael Stipe came up with.  The majority of you will disagree.  You may want to make an informed decision on that by getting any and all Miracle Legion, Polaris and Mark Mulcahy products, hearing them and THEN making your decision.

But let’s get back to the new music from Mark Mulcahy, Dear Mark J. Mulcahy, I Love You.

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