Archive for the ‘"on." performance’ Category

Video: “on.” episode 19 with People, People

November 21, 2010

How can beautiful music like this hide in Stillwater?

Last month I realized the trio known as People, People lived a few blocks away from my apartment.

The band was in the middle of a photo session when I arrived to help out with the madness. People, People bought 120 beers to fuel two dozen of its friends.

The idea behind the shoot was to get everyone dancing. This would make the background of the picture extremely blurry and frantic.

While everyone grooved, People, People stood completely still and with all its willpower tried not to laugh at the obscenities dancers were yelling.

Today, it’s so easy to find music and secure a lot of music. I’m bombarded with new artists every day, but my world slows down when filming sessions go like they did with People, People.

The band enlisted the talents of friends and fellow OSU students to help perform, practiced endlessly and turned an empty ballroom into a concert.

The results are nothing short of magnificent. See for yourself.

  • Interview (From left is Ben Bowlware, Robert Riggs and Derek Moore)

  • Performances

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VIDEO UPDATE: Brother Bear in the studio

April 22, 2010

VIDEO UPDATE: “on.” episode 18 – Michael Huff

April 18, 2010

Michael Huff doesn’t spend too much time in his native state of Oklahoma anymore, but his songs have a good chance of spending time inside your head.

The folk singer is a senior at Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn., but Huff visited Stillwater earlier this semester to play a couple of acoustic songs.

And Huff clashed with Stillwater in the best way possible.

While playing the song “Little Birdie” off of his debut album, he walked past a store named Rhinestone Cowgirl, a building painted with colors louder than an Aerosmith concert inside of a Chuck E. Cheese.

And at that moment, Huff’s clever tune and dylanesque performance directly channeled a time where sitting on a porch and relaxing was a national pastime.

And the porch is where a lot of his music comes from.

“(My band) would all be hanging out, and we’d start passing around a guitar,” Huff said. “It’s exciting to (play) together. We’re family up there (in Nashville).”

His song “Little Birdie” felt like something you want to pass on to your children, even though Huff’s album cover would fit in with your parents’ vinyl collection.

Huff said his songwriting process comes natural.

“I’m trying to learn what the hell (I’m) doing writing songs and why songs written 100 years ago are still being sung,” Huff said.

Take a second to appreciate Huff’s old sound that hopefully won’t die young.

“I’m going to give (music) my best shot,” Huff said. “I’ll write songs all my life whether or not I can make a penny off of them.”

VIDEO UPDATE: “on.” episode 17 – GENTLE GHOST

April 9, 2010

Norman natives Gentle Ghost visited Stillwater last month to not only play an incredible live set (complete with more than 30 guitar effects pedals) but also play an acoustic song.

Also, Seth McCarroll (the frontman with the spectacles) talks about the band’s new record “Family” coming out next week thanks to Nice People, Record Store Day at Guestroom in Norman and the Norman Music Festival. All good things.

VIDEO UPDATE: Soundchecking with The Low Anthem

March 4, 2010

It was the calm before the storm.

Hours prior to the Avett Brothers taking stage in Midwest City last night, a quartet from Providence, R.I. named The Low Anthem played a stunningly simplistic and beautiful set of folk songs.

And before that “on.” got a chance to film The Low Anthem during its sound check.

We got lucky.

Its practice was perfect.

VIDEO UPDATE: Fatty Lumpkin feature and The Flatland Travelers playing “So Long” in the snow

February 26, 2010
  • WHAT’S A LUMPKIN?

I recently chatted with the members of Fatty Lumpkin this week to discuss its show tonight and where in the world the name Fatty Lumpkin came from.

Here’s the story.

Urban Dictionary’s Web site offers some dastardly and entertaining definitions of Fatty Lumpkin, but the music this Texas trio is making should be more than enough to pique your interests.

The jam band Fatty Lumpkin will join Stillwater’s The Flatland Travelers for a show on Friday at 10 p.m. at Vault, 716 S. Main. St.

Besides playing the same bill this evening, the bands share a drive to conquer stages bigger than those in Stillwater. Both bands competed in a contest earlier this month and won a chance to play the Wakarusa Music Festival in Arkansas this summer.

Fatty Lumpkin has played Wakarusa once already. The trio was the first to play the 2008 festival which ended with a performance from the Flaming Lips.

Before any of this happened, Fatty Lumpkin was a band name stuck inside the head of lead singer Kelyn Crapp. The band started as a five piece in high school but slimmed to a trio eight months ago. Now Crapp, Seth Myers and Matt Dixon live together to focus on music.

“Music is something that can’t be conquered,” Myers said. “We try to write our music that way to include improvisational parts so we don’t play the song the same way.”

Drummer Dixon said using an open-ended style allows the band a lot of freedom to explore sounds. The band has been working to capture these sounds on an album in what Dixon called “a long process.”

It has been a year since Lumpkin started working on its album, but in a week it will be released. Myers said he worked closely with the self-titled album and has spent the past few years working to become a sound engineer. He has helped record with artists like Don Henley and Chuck Rainey.

With an experimental sound and Wakarusa lined up, Fatty Lumpkin might become part of your vocabulary.

SHOW PREVIEW and VIDEO UPDATE: “on.” episode 16 (part 2) – Josh Jones of Evangelicals singing “Stoned Again”

February 19, 2010

BROTHER GRUESOME

(from left Brother Gruesome Todd Jackson and Levi Watson)

  • GRUESOME TWOSOME

Here’s a chance to get to know Brother Gruesome before its show in Stillwater on Saturday.

Calling Todd Jackson while he’s celebrating Mardi Gras in New Orleans is a mistake.

Lots of yelling is involved.

Celebrating Jackson’s music is a much better idea and that’ll be possible Saturday at 10 p.m. when his band Brother Gruesome joins Stillwater’s DEERPEOPLE and Oklahoma City’s The Boom Bang at Vault, 716 S. Main St.

Jackson and Levi Watson comprise Brother Gruesome, an Oklahoma City duo who’s crafting seductively simple rock tracks catchy enough to make you strap on dancing shoes and dreamy enough to make you forgot only two people are playing.

Brother Gruesome isn’t your father’s rock band, but the duo records for your creepy uncle’s tape deck. Brother Gruesome chose to contain its first music effort via cassette tape.

Jackson said he has a connection to the classic plastic device.

“I started recording on cassettes when I first started writing, and it felt like the right thing to do at the time,” Jackson said. “CD’s as a medium is on their way out. Listen to tracks on ITunes then you’ll listen to them cassette player, it’s just a lot different sound.”

The five tracks from the self-titled EP took about 10 months to record for a good reason.

Hit rewind a few times on a dusty Sony Walkman, and you’d find Jackson and Watson playing in a psychedelic six-piece named The Hex. This is where he caught the attention of the Evangelicals in the early 2000s.

Since then, Jackson has spent his time playing with Brother Gruesome and the Evangelicals, a band who has opened for acts the Flaming Lips and Conor Oberst.

Evangelicals frontman Josh Jones said Jackson takes an active role in Evangelicals with the direction that band has taken. Evangelicals bassist Kyle Davis said there’s more to Jackson than his musical prowess.

“For shows he does guitar, plays keyboard, does backing vocals and he’s even handy with a wrench,” Davis said.

A majority of these talents will be on display tomorrow. Leave your wrenches at home.

  • DON’T FORGET THIS DATE…

DEERPOSTER

VIDEO UPDATE: “on.” episode 16 (part 1) – Josh Jones of Evangelicals singing “How Do You Sleep?”

February 16, 2010
  • SO GOOD IT’S SPOOKY

  • WHAT’S GOING “on.” THIS WEEK

Todd Jackson of Evangelicals will be in Stillwater this Saturday with his dynamic duo of a band, Brother Gruesome.

Stillwater’s own DEERPEOPLE and The Boom Bang from OKC will be playing as well.

To celebrate, “on.” will be featuring videos all this week from The Evangelicals.

Also, here’s a reminder of the show.

VIDEO UPDATE: “on.” episode 15 Erin Austin (OK Sweetheart) Valentine’s Day Special

February 12, 2010
  • JUST SOME OLD FASHIONED LOVE SONGS

Her band is known as OK Sweetheart, and that’s a fitting nickname for Erin Austin.

After a brief introduction at Stonewall Tavern, the OK Sweetheart gang followed “on.” upstairs into an apartment that sits above Cafe 88.

Austin broke into a duo of love songs, which make it hard not to feel all woozy. Maybe it’s Austin’s warm voice, or maybe it’s the fact Valentine’s Day is so close.

Nonetheless, she seemed like a fitting choice for the first “on.” Valentine’s Day special.

  • GETTING TO KNOW ERIN AUSTIN

Listen to a couple Erin Austin songs, and it’ll take you a few moments to pinpoint what decade from your parents’ vinyl collection she came from.

Austin’s husband Rob Gungor said Austin, 27, recently adhered to a strict diet of The Beatles, The Zombies and early Randy Newman songs to avoid sounding like today’s popular artists.

The diet paid off.

Graced with a talent for stunningly simple songwriting, Austin can generate all the warmth of a dozen Beatles songs and add a carefree, soothing twist.

It’s no surprise her full band is named OK Sweetheart.

Before moving to Oklahoma in 2001, Austin grew up in Oriskany, N.Y., and would invent dances while her father played guitar. Austin has come a long way from performing talent shows for her parents, graduating from Oral Roberts University and moving to California. She said music always has been a part of her life.

“If I hear something or think of something (then) I have to write it down and develop it more,” Austin said. “It’s like a compulsion. If there was no music, I just wouldn’t know what to do with myself.”

She said she began writing an album in 2007, and her work has attracted indie artists like Midlake and local Oklahoma musicians. Clay Welch of Tulsa’s Callupsie plays guitar when OK Sweetheart tours and Patrick Ryan of Tulsa’s Dead Sea Choir plays drums.

Ryan said he’s attracted to the drumming in Austin’s music because McKenzie Smith of Midlake and Gungor wrote the parts.

“It’s drumming 101,” he said. “It’s not about playing crazy, but playing simple really well.”

Austin said OK Sweetheart plans to visit the South by Southwest Music Festival in March to play shows to attract a record label.

If she has to settle for one label, then this OK Sweetheart might have to break more than a few hearts.

  • SEE HER TONIGHT

Friday February 12 @ Opolis
Sherree Chamberlain
Samantha Crain
Erin Austin

9 p.m. | All Ages | $7 Day of show
*$2 surcharge under 21

  • TOO FAR? THEN STAY IN STILLWATER

Saturday February 13 @ Vault
James Price
Satori
James McLaughlin

10 p.m. | All Ages | $5 Day of show

VIDEO UPDATE: Flatland Travelers take on the snow

February 8, 2010
  • UPDATE

The Flatland Travelers won the Wakarusa Winter Classic in Stillwater. If you’re headed to Wakarusa this summer then make sure to say hello to some Stillwater talent.

Although Chris Bell sometimes plays a guitar the size of a newborn baby, his desire for bigger things is still evident.

Bell and guitarist Sam Naifeh are in the Stillwater-native band Flatland Travelers. The duo took a break before touring last week to brave the icy streets of Stillwater to play a couple acoustic songs for “on.”

The country jam band will switch to electric this evening because they will be joined by bandmates Ryan Linden and Dylan Cahwee to compete at Eskimo Joes in the Wakarusa Winter Classic. Several local bands will play starting at 10 p.m. in hopes of winning one time slot in the Wakarusa music festival this June in Arkansas.

Voting will take place Monday at the show.

Naifeh said playing Wakarusa opens a lot of doors for newer bands after gracing a stage at the festival.