Sunday, July 27, 2014

VIDEO and PICS: Slash ft. Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators/Voodoo KC

Pardon the bad lighting...I thought the black and white made it better:

I don't usually take a lot of pictures at shows. I like to be in the moment, and the feeling of actually watching and experiencing is more valuable to me than a blurry smartphone pic. There are professional photographers who shoot these things and do a much better job than I ever could. However, I was blessed enough to be so close, I actually got some decent shots to share. 

Mr. Myles Kennedy

Frankie, Slash, Todd

And Brent, holding it down on the drums!


Sometimes, one guitar just isn't enough.

Voodoo Kansas City
Set list posted on AB Nation
Todd Dammit Kerns
Apocalyptic Love on Amazon
Slash on Amazon
Review of my "most favorite show"


(objects in the above picture are smaller than they appear. Thanks to creative framing by my husband.)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Girl in a song

I try not to write about things everyone else is blogging about. Partly because there's usually nothing left to say, and someone else probably said it better. If I'm going to put something out there, I want to add to the conversation.

I do feel I have something of my own to say about this. Plus I can coil together some of the buzz around the two songs I'm about to write about in one convenient place. You're welcome.

Girl in a Country Song by Maddie & Tae: 

I am not really in the loop with country music. I grew up loving the genre. But in the last few years I've gravitated toward rock and metal, which I've discovered I love just as much, maybe more, than I ever loved country. Nothing that has come out of Nashville has excited me in at least half a decade.

Well, I don't know why, but "Girl in a Country Song" by Maddie & Tae excites me.

For an in-depth analysis of the tune, check out Saving Country Music's Maddie & Tae Make a Summer Anthem out of a Protest Song.

I don't think this song is going to change the world, but it's a good dig at the "Bro Country" trend that is part of the reason I don't turn my dial to country radio anymore. There's room for all kinds of songs in the world. But when every. Damn. Song. Is about the same. Damn. Thing--not to mention the sonic sins being committed by the Bro crowd--it's too much. It was only a matter of time before someone did something like this. Who better than two adorable blonde gals with adorable names like "Maddie" & "Tae?"

Is "Girl in a Country Song" a calculated marketing move? Yup. Again, Trigger at SCM tackles this better than I could.

But it's catchy--my personal main requirement for a song. It's clever, and these girls can actually sing. Their music makes me feel the way I felt when I heard Miranda Lambert's first album.

Now, what really made me decide to write this, and the reason I say Maddie & Tae are making me excited about country again...are these videos of them performing other songs they've written. I was going to let "Girl in a Country Song" pass by in the blonde breeze. But I think their other songs are great as well, and I don't see anyone talking about that:

I especially love the one above, "Smoke." I think these girls are great. I couldn't write a song like that now, let alone when I was a teenager.

I think these gals face a challenge though. There's the novelty effect: any time you put too many pop culture/timely references in a song, you're slapping a big expiration date on it. Referencing "sugar shaker" and that gawdawful "red red red red..." business makes sense now. But pretty soon it will feel like watching the Friends episode where they go to a Hootie and the Blowfish concert. Which is why it's encouraging to hear that Maddie and Tae have more good songs up their sleeve. Hopefully those tunes will have a chance to be heard too.

Breaking news: there's now a music video for "Girl in a Country Song." It's about as ridiculous as you'd expect.

Girl in Your Truck Song by Maggie Rose:

My personal reaction to this song: it makes me want to vomit. I tried to be this girl, and it didn't work out for me. At all. The guy who picks you up in his truck on Friday night has an overbearing momma at home who won't let either of you live your dreams. 
Seriously, what the crap is this? I don't know who Maggie Rose even is, but I suspect she was hired by Florida Georgia Line, Jason Aldean, and Luke Bryan to write a marketing pitch for their party anthems. This song makes her sound like a pandering idiot.

This is pretty much all that's left of my "truck" days.
And this song made me want to burn it all.

My levelheaded reaction: This song is lyrically, and musically, inferior to "Girl in a Country Song." It's not that catchy or interesting. Where "Girl in a Country Song" weaves references to BroCo through in clever ways, "Girl in Your Truck Song" just lists them. 

However, I think "Truck Song" has an advantage in that both women and men will like it. I just can't see a ton of guys digging "Country Song." It's so sassy. While "Truck Song" is apparently getting a lot of love from the dudes who sing the songs she mentions. Duh. But this song will also probably be a hit with the girls who want to make Luke Bryan's speakers go "boom boom." 

I don't know who came up with the Girl in ____ Song bit first. I imagine Maddie, Tae, and Maggie were given the same assignment. Maggie Rose suffered from being the one without a partner because no one wants to work with her since she won't stop talking about her jock boyfriend. 
The twin releases are surely a symptom of the Bro Country trend heading out. The cultural shift about to happen in the country world will be fascinating to watch.

So, that, my friends, was my two cents on this whole mess. 


"Girl who writes a mile-long blog about country music on the same day she's (willingly) attending a Machine Head concert. Song."

Monday, July 14, 2014

Mayfield Four Monday: Week Five

This week's Mayfield Four song I'm loving really needs no explanation, other than... sigh.

"White Flag" from Second Skin.

Why I dig this song: It's romantic and pretty. Plus, as I've stated before, Myles Kennedy doesn't write songs like this, or sing with this much emotion anymore. 

NOT that I have a problem with how Mr. Kennedy is rockin' now.

The drum-filled intro is cool. The strings in the background are Bittersweet Symphony-ish. There is really nothing groundbreaking here. If someone with a less angelic voice was singing, I might just feel "meh" about "White Flag."

Aside from the "bring me to my knees/for you I'd do anything," (which I don't mind) I don't think the lyrics are overly cheesy. The lyrics that stick with me the most are: "white flag flies above/this is what I've chosen/I'd change anything/now that my pride is broken." I also really love the bridge.

Most of all...I can't say I don't enjoy hearing Myles sing a love song. Again, sigh...

If you aren't convinced, check out this video. It's from the same show I posted about last week. I like this live, acoustic version better than the recorded one:

If you are just joining me, and want more Mf4, well, buy an album. Or you can look up their songs yourself... but you'll only get my brilliant commentary by clicking on the links below:

Mayfield Four Monday: Week One
Mayfield Four Monday: Week Two
Mayfield Four Monday: Week Three
Mayfield Four Monday: Week Four



Saturday, July 12, 2014

Song I'm feeling right now: Alter Bridge/Metalingus

If you listen to this song and don't: totally rock out, get completely inspired, or want to go for a really sweet run...then I think there might be something wrong with you.

"Metalingus" (why it's called that, I don't know) is from Alter Bridge's first album, 2004's One Day Remains. I wish I could say I have been an AB fan from the beginning, but I have only been listening to them for about two years. It took me awhile to really dig into their first album. When I did, this song hit me so hard. 

Musically, it's one of the heaviest songs they've recorded. Up until Fortress, anyway. It wasn't a single, but is a clear fan favorite. I doubt they'd play a show without this one in the set list.

"Metalingus" is an excellent example of why I love Alter Bridge. Heavy music, with melodic vocals. While they can get dark, many of the band's most-loved songs have very inspiring lyrics. 

I think they are pretty easy to understand, but you can read the lyrics here. My favorite lines are in the second verse, "I'll never long for what might have been/regret won't waste my life again," and in the bridge, "Fear will kill me/all I could be." I could write a book about why this song's lyrics resonate with me so much. Don't worry. I won't.

"Metalingus" is also killer live. I can't find a great video of the song from either of the shows I attended this year. But here's some Live From Wembly action (Warning: language. Myles is a little Corey Taylor-y here. And I think I like it.):

I want my next tattoo to be something Alter Bridge-related. I have pretty much decided on getting the words, "everything has come to life," from the chorus of this song. I just need to figure out exactly how I want it done.

Fun fact about "Metalingus:" WWE wrestler Edge used it as his theme song:

According to the message boards at The Alter Bridge Nation, this is how a lot of people were introduced to the band.

I hope you enjoy "Metalingus,", and find some meaning or motivation in it like I do. I need this song right now. One of the many things I love about music: it's always there for you.

Until next time,
"another chance/to chase a dream..."

--Mrs. W

Monday, July 7, 2014

Mayfield Four Monday: Week Four

There was no Mayfield Four Monday last week. Thanks to my buddy Michael over at The Cheap Seats blog for noticing!

I had a telethon to produce and a double shift at work, followed by a fun night volunteering at Springfield's Gillioz Theatre and revisiting my Creed fangirl days. But back to business...

This week's song is Eden (Turn the Page):

Why I love it: The lyrics are the front-and-center feature in this track for me. I guess you could say it's a "mature" breakup song, portraying the sadness of losing something you "worked so hard to save." 

I love the lines in the chorus, "I don't want to start all over/and try to find another shoulder/to lean on/'cause yours made me feel safe." This song does a great job making you feel the conflicted emotions that come with ending a relationship that needs to be over...but being afraid to lose the comfort it brings.

I like the acoustic guitar backing the verses, and then electric guitars in the chorus. The way the bridge fades out, and then the heavier chorus comes back at 2:49 is not a unique thing, but I really dig punches like that in songs.

Enjoy this live version, from an MK show in 2009. Sound isn't great, but there is some adorably Myles-y banter at the beginning.

Side note: After you watch this video, you'll likely be referred to more videos from this show. Bofest 2009? I've never seen these before. I love you, internet.

I got the impression from this recent interview that this is what a Myles solo show would be like. Just Mr. Kennedy and his guitar. 

If that's the case...Mf4, and some blues/jazz songs, (Check out "Traveling Riverside Blues.") mixed with the solo songs every Myles Kennedy superfan is probably dying to hear...then I would gladly wait an extra year for a new Alter Bridge record so Myles can finish up and tour on a solo album.

Until that happens, luckily, there are plenty of chances to hear that voice.

Until next time--

Mrs. W.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

VIDEO concert review Scott Stapp/Gillioz Theatre/Springfield, MO

Check out my video review of the July 1, 2014 Scott Stapp show in Springfield, MO.

This is a fun one, because I can legitimately say I accidentally went to a Scott Stapp concert. And I enjoyed it! It's clear Stapp is a guy with something to say and a heartfelt story to tell:

Here is a set list from a show a few nights ago. The Springfield set was a bit different. I think it was shorter, and "Higher" was the last song before the encore...but it's enough to give you an idea of what the concert was like.

I wanted to post this quick 'n dirty style, so there is no music on my video. I apologize for not giving you a reprieve from my grating voice.

BUT--here are a few of the songs I mentioned:

What If-This was the third song of the night, and it was then I decided--this rocks. Eff the metalhead cred I've earned. I'm going to have a good time:

Jesus Was A Rock Star:

Hit Me More-Another Stapp solo song I'm digging:

Faceless Man-Fun times for this music-addicted nostalgia junkie. I had completely forgotten this Creed song existed. Yet the lyrics just came back to if on wings of raven-haired, deep-voiced angels:

The Gillioz Theatre is a really great asset to Springfield, and there are more exciting shows coming up. I plan on volunteering there the next two Saturdays...and any other time I can.  Unless it's a show I really want to make sure I attend. I already have tickets to see the Turnpike Troubadours there in August!

It's always been a dream of mine to actually have a career in the music industry. But being even a small part of a live event--taking tickets or whatever--is thrilling enough for me. I love music that much, and I'm happy I found a way to support great shows in my town.

Back to SS, On facebook, I promised my friend Tom that I would listen to some Anthrax soon, in an effort to earn back some of the "cool points" I lost rocking to "Higher" and "My Sacrifice."

But  I will not promise I won't bust out some Creed and Scott Stapp within the next few weeks.

Until next time--there is no shame in my game!

--Mrs. W.