Mar 4, 2019
About This Episode
Led by the songwriting and vocals of
Jay Farrar, Son Volt was one of the most instrumental and
influential bands in launching the alt.country movement, precursor
to what is now widely referred to as Americana. Farrar possesses
one of the most distinctive voices in roots, rock, country or any
genre. He exudes a soulful longing combined with a
wise-beyond-his-years command that is as arresting and compelling
as ever. As a songwriter, Farrar's depth and poetic penchant has
been the foundation of a thoughtful, deep and intelligent body of
Son Volt's most recent album release
was Notes Of Blue (Thirty Tigers). The 10 songs on Notes Of Blue
are inspired by the spirit of the blues, but not the standard blues
as most know it. The unique and haunting tunings of Mississippi
Fred McDowell, Skip James and Nick Drake were all points of
exploration for Farrar for the new collection.
The album opens with the country
soul of "Promise The World", followed by "Back Against The Wall", a
song that could stand alongside the great Son Volt songs of their
early albums. However, Notes Of Blue reflects the blues as it
resides in the folk tradition, but heavily amplified. The primal
stomp of "Cherokee Girl", the frenetic guitar on "Static" and the
raw slide in "Sinking Down" exude grit and attitude. Conversely,
tracks such as "The Storm" and "Cairo and Southern" seamlessly meld
blues with hypnotic melodies that add a unique balance to Notes Of
Whether you call it alt.country,
Americana, roots rock, insurgent country or just good ol' rock ‘n'
roll, musical trends appear and disappear on regular basis. Notes
of Blue is a testament to the legacy of inspiration and creative
spirit that Jay Farrar and Son Volt continue to uphold.
This episode also features songs
from The Slamming Doors. This Iron Range group brings a lot more to
the table than just being a run of the mill country band. The
country edge is just a fraction of what is happening with this
music. These are sounds and traditions many musicians assume are
too mapped out, too well traveled for anyone to successfully create
something fresh and new. And in the hands of most bands attempting
to operate there, these sounds and traditions often do feel worn
out. With The Slamming Doors the memorized map hasn't vanished, or
been rejected, it has become Origami.
About Michael Perry
Michael Perry is a New York Times
bestselling author, humorist and radio show host from New Auburn,
Perry's bestselling memoirs include
Population 485, Truck: A Love Story, Coop, and Visiting Tom, and
his latest, Montaigne in Barn Boots: An Amateur Ambles Through
Philosophy. His first book for young readers, The Scavengers, was
published in 2014 and first novel for adult readers, The Jesus Cow,
was published in May of 2015.
Raised on a small Midwestern dairy
farm, Perry put himself through nursing school while working on a
ranch in Wyoming, then wandered into writing. He lives with his
wife and two daughters in rural Wisconsin, where he serves on the
local volunteer fire and rescue service and is an intermittent pig
farmer. He hosts the nationally-syndicated "Tent Show Radio,"
performs widely as a humorist, and tours with his band the Long
Beds (currently recording their third album for Amble Down
Records). He has recorded three live humor albums including Never
Stand Behind A Sneezing Cow and The Clodhopper Monologues.
Learn more about Michael and where
to get his publications at www.sneezingcow.com.
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