February 27th, 2014 by Robin

As many of You know I do a lot of research looking for up and coming artists who are talented enough capture our attention out of an already overloaded wavefront of musical acts coming from all directions and who are also AVAILABLE to play for us here in Chattanooga, TN.
Last weekend I was looking over the upcoming shows from Eddie’s Attic in Atlanta and saw a band I’d never heard of,  “The Soil & the Sun.” They looked interesting,  like a seven piece full-on rock orchestra with male & female members, possibly interbreeding, carrying a toddler along for the tour. So I clicked on them and it was some of the most powerfully captivating new music I’ve seen or heard in quite some time.   Immediately I thought “I’ve got to get them here” and within a few minutes I saw they already have a show booked at The Camp House this Saturday March 1st.  This is fortunate FOR US in a lot of ways. We don’t have to drive all the way to Atlanta pay the extra gas and higher ticket price and then make the woozy late night drive back home.  We Win!   But unfortunately for the band the ONLY mention I’ve seen of their performance in Chattanooga is one little post on Camp House’s FB page that I had to go looking for to find.    I’ve not even seen an event invitation thus far.  So I’ve decided to do something that everyone is telling me I shouldn’t do anymore, promote this band for free without any stake in the performance except my own interest in seeing them live, and hopefully not in a room by myself.
So I’m going to start with a list of links to some of their most enjoyably excellent recordings.. This live rooftop concert gives an idea what we may expect onstage.

 

 

and the studio recordings on the front page of their website give us an idea of the level of songwriting we may expect.  www.TheSoilAndTheSun.com
I’ve gone out of my way and paid good money to see Sufjian Stevens, Band of Horses, Grizzly Bear and many others including Pink Floyd who I hear slight echoes of in The Soil and Sun. At this point this band sound and look way more impressive than most of those cats.. (well Grizzly Bear WAS pretty cool and I liked their opener Beach House, almost as well.. and these women are certainly prettier than Pink Floyd..) So this band, at least from a distance looks to be in a league with all those higher profile & higher dollar (for the moment) units. Now we have a unique opportunity to see this (7 piece?) full band up close and take in an experience that we may well brag about later when they’re only available in much larger venues. Or maybe they’ll just go raise kids and get jobs and fade away like so many other great experiments that we are lucky to have records by.. Sometimes it takes this kind of legwork to get your work noticed, playing in a clean & wholesome church sponsored coffehouse (that serves beer!) with virtually no promotion. I’m picking up the vibe there may be some internally driven purpose behind The Soil and the Sun that only the band can describe driving them forward to produce all this immersion worthy music. And maybe someone who spends their most valuable working time scouring the newest digital media will write an article and help propel them even deeper into a sustainable creative lifestyle. A sense of community permeates everything I’ve seen from them her. That must be how they do it. Oh did I not mention they have over 10,000 FB “likes?” How does that even happen anyway? It looks like I would have heard of them before Eddie’s Attic in Atlanta posted their video in an email. I just hope the venue doesn’t lock the drummer up in that humiliating glass outhouse this time…

I’ll see You there!
~R.
the Soil and The Sun @ The Camp House Saturday, March 1st. 7:30pm -11pm EST. 1427 Williams St, Chattanooga, TN 37408  (With at least two of someone’s very most favorite local acts to boot!)

January 2nd, 2014 by Robin

Sometimes life gets in the way, sometimes it makes a better artist.  Over the last few years ArtFRONT has been keeping an eye on the musical projects of  Mandi Rae.  When we first discovered Mandi Rae at an Americana Folk festival near Nashville where the Avett Brothers and Old Crow Medicine Show were just getting their early fan bases started she was a solo folkie storyteller with a guitar who was entertaining enough in that incarnation to get her an opening spot in one of our best attended concerts to date.  She has sinced developed into a true country poet with a dedicated, tight, swinging full band.  As a songwriter Mandi Rae knows how to put the hooks into each of her songs.  Her subject matter is always memorable and her tunes stick in your head like the gum under the seat of an Alabama church pew.   Earlier performances and recordings put her almost in the arena of comedienne storyteller but several years of growing up, becoming a mom  to two little girls and suffering the loss of her husband to an incurable illness has  refined her in to one of the more solidly developed artists to emerge from the underground sub-Dixie circuit.  Birmingham and Nashville have taken notice and Mandi Rae and her band are now poised to start turning heads and developing a widespread fan base starting throughout the southeast then spreading wherever people get a chance to experience one of her solid and melodically satisfying performances.  This collection of songs and videos are all the recordings that comprised her 2006 full length album called Mandi Rae & Westover Water “Gettaway.”   I have replaced two of the songs with live video versions from Nashville’s Music City Roots performance which occurred just a couple of weeks after the tragic loss of her husband.  This was a significant turning point in her style of delivery.  Making an already potent entertainer who was filled with humor and the ability to grab an audience’s attention, into a mature and intense multifaceted presence who is in the game for the win.  As focused a performer as anyone out there, the current Mandi Rae shows are worth paying attention to  for a lot of reasons.  Elements of Bob Dylan, Loretta Lynn,  and a genuine southern voice that most Americana style performers can only emulate.  Mandi Rae is the real thing and You need to be paying attention.  ~R.

January 28th, 2013 by Robin

Russel and Cameron Cook of The Little Country Giants

Russel and Cameron Cook  of the  Little Country Giants

One of our favorite “real country”/Americana groups,  Little Country Giants are coming back to Barking Legs Theater on Friday Nov. 29th.  for a double billed show with Angel Snow in one of the best venues in the southeast for sound quality and intimate settings.  Their last CD is titled “60 Grit.”   Here are a couple of songs for You to listen to before the show.  It was difficult to choose which ones to post here because everything on the album is great,  So I may switch them with others before the show so check back.   You can buy the full CD directly from the band on the night of the show. Look for full details on these musicians, more announcements and purchase advance tickets for this event HERE.

And please give a “like” to our ArtFRONT Presentations facebook page to stay alerted to our events and insights if that’s how You get your info these days .  ~R.

March 27th, 2012 by Robin

Eliza Rickman                   photo © C.B. Lindsley

Eliza Rickman is coming back to play @ Barking Legs Theater in Chattanooga, TN  Thursday Nov. 15th, 2012. . Eliza Rickman’s performance last April @ Barking Legs Theater convinced me she is completely ready for much bigger stages once the media and then the public catches on to her amazingly dynamic stage presentations, chilling vocals and captivating stage presence. Her looping capabilities rival that of Andrew Bird and we will once again roll out the Grand Piano for her performance in order to accentuate her signature set which includes toy piano and other technological marvels as well. Don’t miss Eliza Rickman while You can still see her in this up close & intimate environment. You can read about this show and link to complete information on all the artists who will be performing HERE once our updates are complete for this show.     Eliza will also be appearing on Richard Winham’s afternoon music program on WUTC NPR 88.1 fm in Chattanooga @ between 2 & 4pm on The day of the Show. You can link to their live webcast as well.   Until then You can listen here  to two  of my personal favorites from Eliza’s most recent album
“O You Sinners” which was released in March of 2012.

 ~R.

April 18th, 2011 by Robin

Hope for a Goldensummer

Last year’s  Hope for Agoldensummer’s April show @ Barking Legs Theater in Chattanooga, TN turned out to be the week of one of the most devastating Tornado outbreaks in memorable history but the show still went on!  If  You missed the band that weekend due to the chaos, lack of power at your house or worse, they will return on Sunday April 15th 2012 along with HuDost and dance performer Lacy Jo.   You can read all about this show HERE. ~R.*

Great fortune has it that this spring’s Hope for Agoldensummer performance coincides with the release of their most impressive studio album to date.    ”Life Inside The Body.”  You can listen to these selected streaming audio files here and then  see  Hope for a Goldensummer live along with Ontario’s Americana & World Music duo HuDost who will be collaborating on dance numbers with Chattanooga’s own Lacy Jo of  Zanzibar studios Tribal fusion bellydance.   All the details for this show with links to all three artists’ websites and more of their online music, videos and info is right here.
www.ArtFRONT.com/BarkingLegsPressRelease

Keep in touch with Hope for Agoldensummer through their website and be sure to get the new CD soon as it’s released: www.HopeforAgoldensummer.com

January 6th, 2009 by Robin

Davey MacManus of the Crimea gives ArtFRONT this preview podcast for the 2009 album Listen To Seashells, They Know Everything and his upcoming U.S. solo tour.

Davey MacManus front man of well-known-in-the-U.K. band The Crimea, gives ArtFRONT this preview podcast for the 2009 album Listen To Seashells, They Know Everything .

Of all the new material I’ve been hearing since last fall this music sticks with me and plays in my head as much as anything I’ve heard. These unmastered songs appear on the new full length album.

As of May 2011, Davey has announced there will be a vinyl double album set containing these and other songs from The Crimea available this fall in the U.K.   Check back for more info on this ongoing project.

~R.

November 22nd, 2007 by Robin

the everybodyfields recorded live in December of 2005

Six songs including a couple of  surprising holiday numbers featuring  sparkling harmonies by Sam Quinn and Jill Andrews highlighted by the understated dobro flourishes of  David Richey.  A rare treat from the era which defined the original sound and style of Johnson City Tennessee’s “almost supergroup.”

~R.

September 13th, 2007 by Robin

This is a live recording accompanying the ArtFRONT Presentations coverage of The Green Man Festival at Glanusk Estate near Brecon Wales in August 2007. You can read the Full Article once it’s completed by visiting www.ArtFRONT.com/GreenManFestival.htm (*NOTE this web-page/article is about 90% finished as of Nov. 20th. There are still some rough spots so please check back if You see this before the article is complete.)

Joanna Newsom’s performance was one of the most spectacular of the event. This recording was made almost by accident with a tiny digital voice recorder that was never meant for music, but the excellent sound quality at the festival coupled with the hush that befell the audience as they were mesmerized by this performance makes it well worth listening. Two songs by Joanna Newsom including “The Book of Right On” are featured here.

August 31st, 2007 by Robin

Featured is the lovely Jane Weaver’s “Bits and Pieces” perhaps her most “raw” recording available to date.

~R.

June 18th, 2007 by Robin

March 30 2007

  This is the first ArtFRONT concert series podcast featuring The Charms, Death Valley Driver,  Bialetti,  Caveat Emperor,   North American Royalty.

These musicians performed live in Chattanooga, TN the weekend after the podcast was recorded.