The King of Rock Delivers Again

There are a few hip folks out there that know this, but for those unaware, Danko Jones is the king of rock. It’s true. He has been for quite some time. Since his emergence in the club scene in Toronto in the mid ’90s, Danko, bassist “JC” John Calabrese and whoever's been playing drums for them (there have been six) have been at least one constant in the world of rock we can count on…

The Music Lives On With Me: Honoring a friend’s parents and their record collection

Hard times fell on one of my oldest friends in New Hampshire last year. In seven months he lost both his mother and father. His father died unexpectedly in May, then on Christmas Eve his mother passed after a quick returning illness.  I can’t imagine what he’s going through and I don’t know how he’s holding it together. No brother, no sister. Any other relatives turned out to be estranged jerks over the years. Oh and his…

Kim Warnick's Backstage Encounter

It’s satisfying to reflect on how Portland has been home to some great musicians over the years. Some that we know of; Ben Deily of the Lemonheads, Adam Gardner of Guster, Hutch and Kathy from The Thermals and the legendary BeBe Buell (rock n’ roll mother/sister/friend/singer/muse). This city has been a choice spot for many to hang their hats for some years now. Music, food, art, beer, the coast, good people, we pretty much have…

The Same Old Song and Dance Out of Boston

Like many of you, I was watching that remarkable football game last Sunday. I’m not a big fan of the pre-hype and hoopla myself. I understand this particular game is on a bigger worldwide stage and that there’s more to it, but I just want to watch the game itself. No eight-hour pregame shows. No celebrity picks or foolish videos. Just the game please and damn, what a game it was! I timed my Sunday…

Bridging gaps through music with the Portland Culture Exchange

Protesters gathered on Monument Square Friday night, with sign-holders chanting to passing cars and each other that “Hey Ho! Donald Trump has got to go.” The woman on the bullhorn implored art walkers to come out each month in similar fashion.   Across the street, in the atrium of the Portland Public Library, critics of the current regime took another approach, gathering musicians from several immigrant communities for the Portland Culture Exchange’s music jam and…

Swapping devil horns for waffle cones with Salli Wason

Our person in spotlight this week brings up the topic of true callings. Or better yet, true callings that lead way to other true callings. For close to twenty-five years, Salli Wason has been rocking out with her heart (and many times her person) cloaked in denim and leather. Wason has shredded the most recent years with hard rock and metal bands Sinferno, Man-Witch and Hatchetface & the Vipers. All along the way during the…

The Ghosts of Johnson City revisits America's dark history with The Devil's Gold

Portland's Ghosts of Johnson City romp through town to kick off their new album, The Devil’s Gold, an epic collection of 15 songs that celebrates the near-forgotten lives of classic American archetypes.   The February 11 concert at the Portland House of Music and Events will showcase the band's rich, evocative music, with its stories populated with gold miners, settlers, sailors, and lumberjacks. Present in the album is tragedy and poignancy and a depth of…

The Truth About The Spider On My Button

If you bump into me out in the real world, chances are you’ve seen a button I wear on a couple of my jackets. After some recent misunderstandings and quick assumptions, the clarification of this button might turn out to be a bit of public service announcement that will help me from receiving any more stink faces. I mean lately people are a bit...fiery at everyone, about everything. Quick and snappy. If that’s to continue…

I’ll Decide How Long My Top 10 List Will Be, Thank You

Last week, as your finger scrolled down your phone, you saw the posts. You dodged the urge at first, but then many of you gave your contribution. You chimed in with your two cents and fell right in line. Is it an internet test by some college kids working on a major project or just a question to a friend that got loose online and strangled Facebook for a while.  “What were the top 10…

After The Tonight Show with Kurt Baker

When you meet local musician Kurt Baker or see him perform live, you don’t forget it. If his ’50s, ’60s, ’70s pop/rock-influenced music doesn’t somehow stick in your mind, certainly the man himself will. I guarantee you have never heard anyone use the word, “party” more in your life. (Yes, he might even give Andrew WK a run for his money). He is one of the more upbeat, positive dudes you’ll ever meet on the…
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