Current Issue Details

Buy Current Issue

Columns > Patrick Buzby

Published: 2002/09/26
by Patrick Buzby

Dancing About Architecture

Hola devotees! In this edition of Home Grown Happenings, you will be exposed to the newest group of kind independent touring bands that have joined the Home Grown Music Network! From mounds of press kits these bands were chosen based on originality, tour schedule, online presence, and the intangible: If we liked it! So here are the Fall 2002 Inductees into the HGMN:

Barefoot Manner – From the capital city of Raleigh, NC comes this effervescent acoustic/electric outfit! This is one band that truly takes the crowd/band connection to its most intimate level. The band consists of mandolin, guitar, bass, and percussion plus sweet vocal harmonies. Barefoot Manner showcases their energetic newgrass and spiritual grooves by performing relentlessly throughout the US, often producing special events that take the show to the next dimension. These productions include Mannerland (a two-day camping festival in NC), The Haunted Pour House (Halloween in Raleigh), and the "Barefoot Seuss" show which featured bizarre artwork and poetry reading inspired by Dr. Seuss. Since their inception, it has been clear that the members of Barefoot Manner have created something very special.

Bluestring – Deep and melodic is the sound of this quintet from Athens, GA! Rich textures and dramatic songwriting are the hallmarks of their first album, "Overthinking", and the music is even more enveloping in the live setting. Sax, bass, drums, violin, and guitar coalesce into a bright, hook-laden sound that is full of true musicianship but also catchy and harmonic. Their honest and enigmatic lyrics are fully fleshed out by resounding vocal harmonies. Jazz, rock, pop, bluegrass, and innumerable othe rinfluences weave their way into the music. With their catchy choruses, stylized melodies, and feel-good attitude, Bluestring are sure to delight listeners of all types.

The Codetalkers – Col. Bruce Hampton has done it again….he's found the most amazing musicians, and helped them shine! The band has been tearing up the road for over three years, all the while building some incredible songs – some of the best our scene has heard. Now a handful of these well-crafted pieces are available on their much anticipated self-titled debut on Harmonized Records. The music hints at many genres including rock, jazz, latin, country, pop and jam-but is somehow greater than the sum of its parts. This CD may change the way you think about the banjo, flying saucers and grandmothers, not to mention Baltimore. Surreal blues and oddball expressionism!

Cookout – Instrumental jazz/funk/fusion with a psychotic tendency! Cookout hails from Hattiesburg, MS, and their music drips with the swampy funk of the south. The funky ooze is cleaned up by a sparkling spritz of traditional jazz, soulful organ blues, and smart composition. The music of Cookout defies description in a deeply satisfying way that must be experienced by all. Marked by swarming Hammond B-3 organ cadenzas, powerful rhythms, bone-crunching guitars, penetrating saxophone, and Chapman Stick Bass, the musicians also inject memorable twists and affecting hooks into their repertoire. The artists' groove-oriented demeanor rings loud and clear along with elements of a jam band approach. In fact, the music sparks notions of partaking in an outdoor music fest, where the audience would be cavorting or dancing in the aisles. Hence, Cookout equates with an immensely entertaining listening experience.

Guest – Guest is contributing to the creation of the "new wave jam scene". The band's sound echoes and expands upon the early work of artists such as Peter Gabriel and Talking Heads, incorporating elements of electronica, progressive rock, and dance music, accompanied by intelligent and sensible lyrics. The result is a free form yet formulaic structure focusing on the interplay between organic and synthetic. Delightful pianos skip over dense beds of galloping bass. Guitar solos sear the air. The sound of Guest is one of technical excellence and spontaneous combustion.

Mad Dog Trio – Dark, aggressive jazz improvisation is fertile ground for this keyboard trio! Originally from North Carolina, Mad Dog Trio recently relocated to Boston, MA to spread their jaw-dropping sounds further across the universe. Keyboardist Amy Bowles manipulates it. Drummer Post Postlethwait controls it. Bassist Tom Royal focuses it. When done in unison, they are known as Mad Dog Trio. From their midst come echoes of Monk, Debussy, Ohio Players, and Thievery Corporation. Ideas throbbing with the pulse of rhythm. Overweight licks and greasy funk. The result taps into a collective consciousness with spooky, riveting, and oddly joyous effects. Instrumental down-tempo exploration and ass-shaking angst. Structure hides within their songs emerging to take the shape of the participative crowd. Jazz with ferocity.

McCloskey Bros – Bluegrass bands are everywhere these days, but sometimes one of these neo-traditionalist outfits separate themselves from the pack. The McCloskey Brothers Band definitely has plenty to offer for all kinds of music fans. Utilizing chord progressions that sound more like AC/DC than Bill Monroe, this acoustic "soar-grass" outfit will knock you winded with their perfect vocal harmonies and songwriting intensity. An electrified rhythm section provides a mountainous backdrop for the Brothers' high-country string acrobatics!

Porterhouse – Big, beefy, and smothered with funk flavor! This Portland, OR band plays some of the most debaucherous, hardcore funk on the planet! Keyboardist and namesake Joey Porter drenches the band's solid fusion of R&B, soul, and jazz with intense leads. They have made quite a name for themselves playing in the Pacific Northwest, Colorado, and California, where their live shows turn entire clubs into booty-shaking exhibitions. Their newest CD, "Prime Cuts", is a sizzling sermon of snazzy horns, breakneck funk, and sweaty grooves that would leave James Brown in a heap on the floor.

Raq – This Vermont quartet more than fits the HGMN bill. With the familiar drums-bass-keys-guitar lineup, they play aggressive improvisational rock with no boundaries. Each member is uniquely talented, and it is hard to belive that they have only been together for about 14 months when you witness their explosive jamming ability and brain-trapping songs. Guitarist Chris Michetti proudly displays the influence of fellow Vermonter Trey Anastasio, producing wickedly inventive solos and plenty of tooth-gritting power. Keyboardist Marc Scortino's impressive keyboard work and songwriting are enhanced by the clarity and brightness of his singing. The rhythm section is simply unflappable. Drummer Greg Stukey makes his job look effortless even during the trickiest tempo shifts and bassist Jay Burwick has a handle on the groove that just wont budge. They are slowly spreading across the US, but currently they perform most of their gigs in Vermont, New York, and Massachusetts. We are very excited about the music this band is going to make!

Find out more about these bands by visiting where you can get tour dates, song samples, and more!

See you next month!

Bryan Rodgers

Show 0 Comments