Monday, February 28, 2011

You just kinda wasted my precious time, so don't think twice, it's alright...

Suze Rotolo, Muse and Former Girlfriend to Bob Dylan, Dies as Age 67
Nicole Barron Suze Rotolo, who was most known as Bob Dylan’s muse and girlfriend in the 1960s, died at the age of 67 on Thursday. The New York Times reported that Rotolo died in her Manhattan home. She died of lung cancer, according to her husband, Enzo Bartoccioli. Rotolo was known as the girl who Dylan walked arm-in-arm with on the cover of his 1963 album, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. Full Story »

I know it don't thrill you, I hope it don't kill you...

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Tim Gunn...gotta love him!....

Sad news, Brooklyn...

In the 1950s, the three best centerfielders in baseball played in New York - Mickey Mantle for the NY Yankees, Willie Mays for the NY Giants and Duke Snider for the Brooklyn Dodgers.  Duke Snider died today at age 84.
Snider was a Dodger fan's answer to the question, who's the best centerfielder in New York -- a debate involving fellow greats Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle that long outlasted their rivalry of the 1950s.  After they retired, this holy trinity of New York centerfielders -- all in the Hall of Fame -- appeared together on sports talk shows to discuss the rivalry among their World Series-winning teams, their fondest moments on the field, and to kid one another about their enduring association.  A popular song "Talkin' Baseball" by Terry Cashman in 1981 made the exploits of "Willie, Mickey and the Duke" even more legendary. (complete story)
Sorry, I can't find the original "Talkin' Baseball" by Terry Cashman.

Sunday morning pre-Huskies mix...

Good news:  Huskies finally suck it up.
Sad news:  RIP "The Duke" Touch 'em all. (video)

Through the Night (Matt Maarantz) Jazziz Oct 2004
Jeru (Gerry Mulligan) Re-birth of the Cool
Someone To Watch Over Me (Sonny Rollins) Silver City
In the Night (Professor Longhair) Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues
Shuckin' & Jivin' (Jimmy McGriff) Jazziz On Disc
Rock House (Brian Setzer) Rockabily Riot, Vol I
When the Saints Go Marching In (Dr. John) N'awlinz: Dis, Dat or D'otha
Woman Walk Out the Door (Rosie Flores) A Honky Tonk Reprise
Sometimes I Dream Of Willie Mays (The Baseball Project) Vol I: Frozen Ropes & Dying Quails
Trust (The Sawtelles) Tryptych
What a Little Moonlight Can Do (Billie Holiday) Billie's Blues
If I Should Lose You (Tal Farlow) Trinity
Motherless Child (John Scofield) Piety Street
Candy Man (Roy Orison) A Black And White Night

Jimmy Calhoun - "I'm Sorry."

Friday, February 25, 2011

The show's in, like, five minutes, and you're an hour away, but would you like them?...

Got a call from Pool Hall Stud Marky G late today.  He whined that he copped a last-minute weekend Key West gig with the lovely and talented Maureen and offered up a couple of hot Radiators tix for tonight's Farewell Tour concert at the Stage One in Fairfield.  Apparently, after he went down his list of possibilities and, just after the drunken child molester on the corner turned them down, his gave me a holla.  The Reet just got back from her annual week-long Hall Pass with Bette, so we had to, with regrets, turn them down.  I saw those venerable old Radiators for the first time in New Orleans back in 1989 at Tipitina's.  I had no idea who the Radiators were at the time and I was pissed that the Neville Brothers weren't playing that night.  But while sipping on a couple of ice cold Dixies, I soon became a huge fan.  They usually close Jazz Fest opposite the Nevilles; gotta catch them for the last time this Spring.  Suck the head, squeeze the tip, y'all:

UConn lays an egg, Celtics trade Perk, it's not a good day...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Troubadour Chris D back from Cayamo music cruise...

The mate was a mighty sailing man,
The skipper brave and sure.
Five passengers set sail that day
For a three hour tour, a three hour tour.

Email from Chris:
I'm attaching a photo of a show on the Cayamo cruise:  Allison Moorer's show and it's Steve Earle (her husband) sitting in on harmony on this song.  I thought Allison Moorer was the best performer on the boat, better than Patty Griffin.  Lots of great shows.  Brandi Carlisle was a big hit and she works hard in her show.  Shawn Mullins (Lullabye and Shimmer) was a great act too.  He has a strong, deep, resonant voice, and he sang harmony with a lot of different people, including Indigo Girls and Patty Griffin.

Johnnyk note:  Allison Moorer is the kid sister of the very fine Shelby Lynne.  Here is a live clip of Allison:

New Carolina Chocolate Drops lineup...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wednesday morning at five o'clock as the day begins....

Get your red-hot Sawtelles here:
  • Friday Feb 25 at the Funky Monkey in Cheshire
  • Monday Feb 28 at the Red Cafe at Wesleyan University in Middletown 
  • Friday Mar 4 at Typhoon Restaurant in Middletown 

 Jimmy Calhoun, naughty boy!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

An Emmylou Harris Sunday morn'....

Two albums on my iPod:
  • A Cowgirl's Prayer (1993) featuring the best version of Lucinda Williams' Crescent City I've heard
  • Elite Hotel (1975) featuring some great Gram Parsons, Rodney Crowell, Hank Williams songs
Possibilities for a cold, crisp Sunday:
  • Bassist Matt Dwonszwk leads his group at 3 pm in the free Baby Grand Jazz Series at the Hartford Public Library
  • Vista: A Fresh Look at Chamber Music - Free at 4 pm, Morse Recital Hall in Sprague Memorial Hall, Yale University - (information)
Sunday thought of the day:  Aretha Franklin says she's back at 150%.  Yikes, that would put her in the 750 LB neighborhood, wouldn't it?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Hockey Night In (East) Hartford.....

Saturday afternoon post- Huskies beatdown mix...

Spanish Harlem (Mamas & Papas) California Dreamin'
A Bone Through the Nose (Richard Thompson) Daring Adventures
He Who Lives in Fear (Herbie Hancock) The Prisoner
Somebody Help Me (The Iguanas) Nuevo Boogaloo
Time For Livin' (Sly & the Family Stone) The Essential...
Just To Be With You (The Passions) 20 Great Love Songs
Kansas City (Freddie Cannon) EP Collection
Too Late (Angela Strehli) Deja Blue
I've Got to See You Again (Norah Jones) Come Away With Me
Wish I Could Fly Like Superman (The Kinks) Low Budget
You're Gonna Lose Your Gal (Ella Fitzgerald) The Early Years
Nadine (Dion) Son of Skip James
Like Someone in Love (John Coltrane) Lush Life
Mister Midnight (Johnny Ray) A Proper Introduction to...
Struggle (Keith Richards) Talk Is Cheap

Friday, February 18, 2011 jukebox...

It's a Juke Box!
Click on any year and a Juke Box pops up with 20 hits of that year!

Bristol bands from long, long ago...

Tommy and the Bel-Aires (Bob Montgomery, Bristol Press)

I’ve been waiting for this e-mail from Tom Zagryn who has outlined some ‘cool’ information on Bristol rock bands from the past, the most active topic recently in this column. It goes as follows:

“A friend of mine told me of a piece you did recently for The Bristol Press on a Bristol band called the Rogues (later Squires). I was personally very active in band work in Bristol starting in 1958. Our band, Tommy and The Bel-Aires, was arguably the first Bristol rock band playing locally at very well-attended dances and shows.  All of this was documented in Bristol Press advertisements and stories.  “I saved those clippings, including on the Aug. 7-9, 1959 Muzzy Field appearance ad where my band appeared with Gene Pitney (act was Jamie and Jane on Decca Records). Incredibly, and also documented in the Bristol Press promo for this same show was upstart actor Mr. Steve McQueen pitching his ‘Wanted Dead Or Alive’ western show. Yes, he was there too. Original band photo and Bristol Press clippings are included here-in. The members of my band were: Marty Chandler, Stan Kulasenski, Tommy Zagryn, Eddie Monahan (deceased brother of WBIS and Channel 30’s Tom Monahan), and Dave Casineri. - (more)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

For your Thirsty Thursday, a couple of grizzled vets singing beautifully....

Since they are both going to be at Jazz Fest at the same time this year, perhaps.....

And, since I'm currently grinding my way through Keith Richards' Life, Here are Keith and Willie!

Sarah knocked up, but not out...

The life of a touring musician is rough, as Sarah Borges can attest. The lagging economy makes things difficult, as does the extended time away from home. Plus, "You're only alone when you go to a rest-stop bathroom. It's crazy," she says with a laugh.  Since Borges released her first album in 2005, she and her three bandmates in the Broken Singles (including guitarist and husband Lyle Brewer) have been on the road. Their shows are renowned for Borges' exuberant stage presence and the band's energetic, rowdy, punk-cum-country tunes. But despite their success, which includes two additional studio albums and a live collection, the band is taking a long hiatus and Borges will perform solo, just as she did a decade ago when she first started playing.

"We were on tour for almost eight years and everyone in the band is getting a little bit older. I'm actually expecting my first child this summer," she says.  The Broken Singles' hiatus and her concurrent pregnancy "wasn't something that we planned, in terms of having a hiatus for our baby, but it worked out well and other band members had wanted to do the same. It's not something you can do when you're away from home so much of the time." (more)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

If you ambled through the French Quarter in the mid-60’s you might have come upon an engaging longhaired college student from Poplarville, Mississippi with a beat-up guitar, a few chords and an old Ford. If you dropped some coins in his cigar box, you may have helped shape his sound. As Jimmy recalls it:
"On weekends I was out of Poplarville as fast as my Ford Falcon would take me. In those days, folk music was happening in New Orleans… New Orleans competed on the world stage at all levels… The Bayou Room was smack-dab in the heart of the Bourbon Street strip joints… The people who taught me as much about being a performer as anybody performed on that little stage… After the last show at the Bayou Room, I would make my way to Jackson Square with my gig bag and set up shop on the corner of Chartres and Conti. I will never, ever forget the first time someone actually dropped money into my cigar box and told me I was good. I would bang away till the wee hours of the morning, until my cuticles bled or there was no one listening. Then I would count my money, close up shop, and relax at the Morning Call with a cup of cafĂ© au lait and an order of beignets…” (more)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy St. Valentine's Day, People!...

From the Grammys, Best New Artist - Esperanza Spaulding

Jazz pianist George Shearing dies at 91
Sir George Shearing, the ebullient jazz pianist who wrote the standard "Lullaby of Birdland" and had a string of hits both with and without his quintet, has died. He was 91.  Shearing, blind since birth, died early Monday morning in Manhattan of congestive heart failure, his longtime manager Dale Sheets said.  "He was a totally one-of-a-kind performer," said Sheets. "It was something wonderful to see, to watch him work."  Shearing had been a superstar of the jazz world since a couple of years after he arrived in the United States in 1947 from his native England, where he was already hugely popular. The George Shearing Quintet's first big hit came in 1949 with a version of songwriter Harry Warren's "September in the Rain." (more)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Here's a nod to Johnny Gumbo, currently spending a couple weeks of rest 'n relaxation in Mexico...

"I smuggles some smokes and folks from Mexico, baked by the sun, every time i go to Mexico"

Then one night in the lobby of the Commodore Hotel.....

They don't make 'em like Lowell George anymore, seen here on the Midnight Special with Jesse Winchester (see you at Jazz Fest, Jesse), Bonnie Raitt & a very young Emmylou Harris.

And THIS is why we fell in love with Bonnie!

Post-Celtics victory, pre-Huskies v. Friars, pre-Grammys mix while reading Keith Richards' LIFE...

In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening (Hoagy Carmichael) Best of...
I Really Do (The Orbits) A Million Dollars Worth of Doo Wop
Under the Hood (Al Anderson) Pay Before You Pump
Every Time We Say Goodbye (Sarah Vaughn) The Roulette Years
Seasons Change (Corrine Bailey Rae) Corrine Bailey Rae
Skylark (Ernestine Anderson) Great Moments With...
First Time I Met the Blues (Buddy Guy) Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues
Let Me In (Bonnie Raitt) Takin' My Time
Kick It! (Anita O'Day) Uptown
She's About a Mover (Sir Douglous Quintet) She's About a Mover
Dance Hall Dreams (Rosie Flores) Dance Hall Dreams
Let Them Knock (Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings) 100 Days, 100 Nights
Mediocre (Chick Corea) Remembering Bud Powell
Harder Than the Fall (Ruthie Foster) The Phenomenal Ruthie Foster
PCH (ZZ Top) Antenna
Jive At Five (Zoot Sims) Down Home
All About You (Sonny Landreth) Grant Street)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

One new album, eight album covers. Blessed are those who think up these things...

The Deluxe CD of Blessed has 8 different covers shipped at random to retail. Send your receipt or proof of purchase for any version of Blessed from any retailer by 3/6/11 and we'll email you 2 unreleased tracks details to follow. Email your receipt or proof of purchase to: blessedpreorderdownloads

We'll be Blessed listening to Lu at Jazz Fest Thursday, but without the tardy Johnny Gumbo....

Here's your Saturday morning Lucinda Williams fix. 
Her new album, Blessed, produced by Don Was, is out March 1st.  Peter M is already on board for her Boston tour stop.  (Review in
Track Listing:
1. Buttercup
2. I Don't Know How You're Livin'
3. Copenhagen
4. Born To Be Loved
5. Seeing Black
6. Soldier's Song
7. Blessed 
8. Sweet Love
9. Ugly Truth
10. Convince Me
11. Awakening
12. Kiss Like Your Kiss

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Does this make you want to run out and buy a Zales diamond for the little lady?...

No, but it makes me want to run out and buy the Black Keys.  (Here's the commercial - click)

Tuesday winter evening mix...

The Road That Leads to Heavan (Jim White) Wrong-Eyed Jesus
Chain of Fools (Aretha Franklin) Lady Soul
Shakedown (Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels) Sock It To Me
Don't You Even Care (Robert Cray Band) Don't Be Afraid of the Dark
Rules of the Road (Nat King Cole) The Billy May Sessions
Building On Fire (Talking Heads) Best of...
The Only Joy In Town (Joni Mitchell) Night Ride Home
Deep Water (Bonnie Raitt) Souls Alive
The Sun Died (Betty Carter) Finally
I'll Walk Away (James Hunter) People Gonna Talk
Goupie Superstar (Delaney & Bonnie) D&B Together
Stranded (Van Morrison) Magic Time
Midnight To Six Man (The Pretty Things) Get a Buzz

Sittin' here awonderin' - Do clouds have only two sides?...

From Christine Ohlman's Facebook:
Loving this video from New Orleans PazFest in September..someone just sent me the link. Michael Paz produced this great Joni Mitchell Tribute that raised funds to open a childrens' burn clinic...great music for a great cause!

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Pool Hall Stud Marky G is known to break out in a chorus of Tiny Dancer every now and again, too....

Nice job, Christina!

But I just discovered you guys a few months ago!...

Grammy-nominated Chocolate Drops shuffle lineup (AP)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Grammy-nominated Carolina Chocolate Drops have made a lineup change on the eve of the awards.  Nonesuch Records spokeswoman Melissa Cusick told The Associated Press that founding member Justin Robinson has left the band. Beat boxer Adam Matta and multi-instrumentalist Hubby Jenkins are coming aboard to join Rhiannon Giddens and Dom Flemons, she said.  The Chocolate Drops announced the change at a show last week. No reason was given for the switch.  "The Carolina Chocolate Drops have been playing together and touring the world for more than five years," Robinson said. "During those years, we have experienced great successes, heartbreaks, trials and triumphs. It is, however, time for me to take a separate road and though it is bittersweet, it is the best choice."  Robinson said he won't be touring with the band full-time, but may show up on stage every once in a while.

The Chocolate Drops are a North Carolina-based folk group in the old string band tradition that grew out of friendships made while playing with Piedmont string musician Joe Thompson and at the Black Banjo Gathering. The band is up for best traditional folk album for their critically acclaimed fourth album "Genuine Negro Jig" at the Feb. 13 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles.  "Folks can still expect great music from our group the same way a jazz band can change personnel without sacrificing the quality or the talent on stage," Flemons said.

Saturday, February 05, 2011

A great day in Harlem...

SINCE its creation in 1958 A Great Day in Harlem has become an icon of jazz photography. It is also recognized, in the broader context of American photography, as a major work. Through appearances on posters, postcards, in books and maga- zines it is celebrated worldwide. Originally commissioned by Esquire magazine, the underlying concept was simple: to create a group portrait of living legendary jazz musicians on a Harlem street. However the photograph's compositional brilliance, its historic importance, no less the complex logistics required to organize the shoot, made Art Kane's achievement a notable event in the history of photography. (site)

Sittin' downtown in a railway station, one toke over the line....

Hey buddy, really?  I mean, I'm not the biggest fan of Wikipedia either, but....really?
A Connecticut man was arrested after he called 911 to find out how much legal trouble he could get in for growing marijuana, the Hartford Courant reported yesterday. Robert J. Michelson of Farmington, CT called 911 on Thursday to ask about the legal penalties for cultivating marijuana. Dispatchers traced his address and sent narcotics officers to his home. Read more


Friday, February 04, 2011

Here's hoping it's not a journey through Journey songs...

Troubadour Chris D off to the Caymans with family and a bunch of very cool musicians.  Chris, a close personal friend of Gregg Allman and a performer of note in his own right, has promised to review the cruise exclusively for Johnnykmusic, so stay tuned.  Listing of artists - (here)

Cayamo 2011: A Journey Through Song 
The music and the sea are calling again. You’re invited to join us as we sail through the Eastern Caribbean on Cayamo 2011: A Journey Through Song. The past three years have been filled with amazing moments, jaw-dropping performances, and spontaneous collaborations. We’ve also been witness to interactions not only between music idols and music fans, but music fans with each other.  These are instances that we will not soon forget. This year we will be departing on a seven day journey from Miami on February 13th, 2011, and making three stops in breathtaking Tortola (British Virgin Islands), St. Croix (US Virgin Islands), and Great Stirrup Cay (Bahamas). Cayamo is an event near and dear to Sixthman and with 2010 exceeding all of our expectations we can’t wait to put 2011 over the top.   (more)

Watch the full episode. See more Austin City Limits.

    Johnny Gumbo sends greetings from the Great Northleft - enjoy!....

    "Girl, I want to shake your Daddy's hand."

    Thursday, February 03, 2011

    Highly recommended by Jim Kane, Bristol's oldies guru...

    Kenny Vance heads to Trinity-on-Main (

    NEW BRITAIN — You’ve read the ads. You’ve heard the news. Yes! Back by popular demand: Kenny Vance and the Planotones: Unplugged. This Saturday night at Trinity-on-Main. Live! Up close! Personal! Among today’s great vocal pop musicians, Kenny Vance and The Planotones have voices of original and inviting dimension.  The group, Kenny Vance, Johnny Gale, Kurt “Frenchy” Yahjian, Jimmy Bense, keyboardist Chip Degaard and Tony Gallino on drums, redefine oldies with vocal authority and freshness.  As exemplified by their signature song, “Looking For An Echo,” their material may be out of the 1950s and 1960 s.Yet, they consistently bring a unique and sophisticated point of view to their music. Call them “classicists,” who open the eyes of a new generation to a rich, historical musical style. Their cool and sultry musical approach is like an unexpected gift to someone hearing them for the first time.  The Planotones redefine oldies with vocal authority and freshness.

    As a kid in New York, Vance was captivated by rock ’n’ roll. At 15, he was hanging around the Brill Building meeting other singers and songwriters and eventually formed the widely acclaimed group “Jay and The Americans.” The group recorded 15 albums, toured extensively and opened for The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.  In the years that followed, Vance produced the first record for Walter Becker and Donald Fagen — Steely Dan. In his early 20s Vance remained with Jay and The Americans throughout their 11-year career. He went on to compose, supervise and produce scores and soundtracks for feature films and television bringing the Alan Freed story, “American Hot Wax,” to musical life by recreating groups of the ’50s and ’60s for the screen.

    Vance acted as musical director for “Saturday Night Live” and music supervisor for such films as “Animal House,” “Eddie and The Cruisers” and “Looking For An Echo.” As an actor he appeared in “Hurly Burly,” “Billy Bathgate,” “American Hot Wax,” “Eddie and The Cruisers” and in Woody Allen films, including Allen’s untitled upcoming feature.  Vance says he likes to hit the high notes best. His range, clarity and emotional fidelity have led The Planotones to new musical heights.  Saturday evening will feature three hours of music, as well as conversation, questions and answers with Vance and the audience.

    Tonight at Infinity Music Hall in Norfolk...

    Thursday 2/3 @ 8 pm: Carolina Chocolate Drops - Beat the cold with some red-hot Southern roots music! This trio of young musicians learned at the knee of old-time master fiddler Joe Thompson, then took an American tradition and gave it a hip and contemporary twist. One of the few remaining African-American string bands, the Drops play the traditional repertoire, with surprises like a version of R&B artist Blu Cantrell’s Hit ‘Em Up Style thrown in. Forget the ice and snow, these Chocolate Drops are melt-in-your-mouth good!

    Wednesday, February 02, 2011

    They say that breaking up is hard to do (remember when you held me tight, hugs and kisses all through the night)...

    The White Stripes announce they are breaking up (per their website)
    The White Stripes would like to announce that today, February 2nd, 2011, their band has officially ended and will make no further new recordings or perform live.   The reason is not due to artistic differences or lack of wanting to continue, nor any health issues as both Meg and Jack are feeling fine and in good health.  It is for a myriad of reasons, but mostly to preserve What is beautiful and special about the band and have it stay that way.  Meg and Jack want to thank every one of their fans and admirers for the incredible support they have given throughout the 13 plus years of the White Stripes’ intense and incredible career.   Third Man Records will continue to put out unreleased live and studio recordings from The White Stripes in their Vault Subscription record club, as well as through regular channels.  Both Meg and Jack hope this decision isn’t met with sorrow by their fans but that it is seen as a positive move done out of respect for the art and music that the band has created. It is also done with the utmost respect to those fans who’ve shared in those
    creations, with their feelings considered greatly.

    With that in mind the band have this to say:
    “The White Stripes do not belong to Meg and Jack anymore. The White Stripes belong to you now and you can do with it whatever you want. The beauty of art and music is that it can last forever if people want it to. Thank you for sharing this experience. Your involvement will never be lost on us and we are truly grateful.”

    Meg and Jack White, The White Stripes

    Happy Groundhog Day!...

    Tuesday, February 01, 2011


    Okay, not so you.  Don't know why there's no sun up in the sky, stormy weather (what, you thought I was going to do Lena Horne or Etta James?)...

    Sawtelles email alert for February functions.  Check for full details on upcoming stuff.   They will have Tryptych with them if you need to get hooked up:

    • Feb 4 (Fri)- Typhoon Restaurant, Main Street, Middletown 6-8PM (longer if you bang on the tables); great food, byob.
    • Feb 16 (Wed)- Peter plays drums for Lys Guillorn at BAR.  Imagine that, a Sawtelle playing music at BAR, but not as a Sawtelle.
    • Feb 18 (Fri)- Javapalooza, Main Street, Middletown 7:30-9:30PM.
    • Feb 25 (Fri)- Funky Monkey, Watch Factory Shoppes, Cheshire Center 7-9PM
    • Feb 28 (Mon)- Wesleyan Bookstore Cafe, Middletown 6:30-7:30PM; the Thinman makes some awesome food there.