Friday, November 18, 2011
NEWS FEATURES, Acoustic Americana Music Guide, November 18, 2011 edition
NEWS & REVIEWS, Acoustic Americana Music Guide, November 18, 2011 edition
Some Up-Front Stuff this Week, Before You Jump in...
There's a fine and useful free class Saturday at noon (News feature # 2) that will be of great benefit to artists and activists of all kinds. It was one we learned of, late. And it forces a point. Before we get started, there's something important that needs saying: There was no intention to make so much of this edition about topics and news related to the “Occupy” movement. But much of it is, based on artists in the news and topics of interest to artists.
This does not represent a change of emphasis for the Acoustic Americana Music Guide's news section. It's just that we didn't have time this past week to finish the five reviews that we have in progress (two new CD reviews, one pre-digital music review in our ongoing series of fresh looks at old recordings, and two live performance reviews). We 'spect we'll get caught up with all that and have at least some of it for you next week.
We're at that time of year when it gets dark early and you need to know about good ways to spend your evenings out, so, as always, our Spotlight Events section is all about that. There are some fine shows, though not much festival news, and most of the CDs we're receiving are Christmas albums that we're just not ready to hear yet. But we're trying to stay on top of all of it for you. As always, we welcome your comments.
Want to get each weekly edition of the Guide's NEWS FEATURES delivered directly to your inbox? (Without waiting for your webgroup moderator to approve and post it?) Email and subscribe directly, for FREE,
Just say, SUBSCRIBE ME!
(That way, you'll also know each time our SPOTLIGHT EVENTS section gets a major update, though we do NOT email that one, because it's huge.)
WE ARE GRATEFUL to our many website and webgroup partners who faithfully bring you The Guide's weekly News Features. But these are sometimes subject to delay (up to several days, it seems) for moderators of some sites / groups to re-publish for their readers. So why not GO DIRECT!? (Yep, it's still free, and we don't share your email address with anybody.)
This section is the NEWS – you can find ALL THE EVENTS in the Guide's companion section – SPOTLIGHT EVENTS – at
Let's get started!
Tied to the Tracks'
November 18, 2011 edition
THIS WEEK’S NEWS FEATURES
1) Quick Roundup of the Weekend's Events
2) “Critical Language in Action” Class Saturday, Presented by Occupy L.A.
3) ELIZA GILKYSON Remixes "Beautiful World" as Salute to “Occupy” Movement
4) Does the Occupy / 99 % Movement Still Need a Defining Song?
5) Folkie SARAH McQUAID Is Touring Like A Rock Star
6) Ear Buds DO Cause Hearing Loss
7) Invitation to Artists: 30th Annual LOS ANGELES HOLIDAY CAROLING FESTIVITIES
8) Spend THANKSGIVING at the Learning Garden in Venice
9) Thanksgiving – a Bit o' History...
Here are this week's news feature stories, listed above...
Our # 1 Story
QUICK ROUNDUP OF THE WEEKEND'S EVENTS
A note, before we start: Last week's feature story on the all-star bluegrass musicians in the ROLAND WHITE BAND omitted an additional show they're playing. They're at McCabe's in Santa Monica this Saturday night. (It's listed in the Spotlight Events section). The Guide's story on the band from last week is still available, at http://acousticamericana.blogspot.com/2011/11/news-reviews-acoustic-americana-music_11.html
Here's a QUICK-READ PRESENTATION of what's out there for you this weekend
SATURDAY, November 19:
There's a FESTIVAL, 10 am-4 pm, the “26th annual ELVES FAIRE” with GWENDOLYN & HER BAND at 11 am, in Altadena; Noon-1 pm is “CRITICAL LANGUAGE IN ACTION,” a teach-in class by CHRISTIAN W. CHUN, PhD., USC's Rossier School of Education; taught free at “Occupy Los Angeles” on the grounds of L.A. City Hall, downtown L.A.; at 7 pm, CLAUDIA RUSSELL & THE FOLK UNLIMITED ORCHESTRA plus JILL FREEMAN, at the Coffee Gallery Backstage; at 7 pm, THE BROWNE SISTERS & GEORGE CAVANAUGH play Butler's Coffee, in Palmdale, and it's a rare chance to see this big festival act in an intimate venue; at 7:30 pm, KATE MacLEOD & KAT EGGLESTON play “The Living Tradition” series in Anaheim; at 7:30 pm, there's “HOMEWARD BOUND: a tribute to SIMON & GARFUNKLE and AMERICA” with MARK W. CURRAN, and VENTURA HIGHWAY, at Scheer Forum Theater, Thousand Oaks; at 8 pm, Grammy-winning guitar wizard LAURENCE JUBER plays the Fret House in Covina; at 8 pm, THE ROLAND WHITE BAND with Grammy-winner Roland White and West Coast mega-talented band members are at McCabe's; at 8 pm, RITA HOSKING & COUSIN JACK play the Caltech Folk Music Series in Pasadena; at 8 pm, T-LOU & HIS SUPER HOT ZYDECO BAND play the zydeco dance in Monrovia; at 8 pm, THE KLEZMATICS play the Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown L.A.; at 8 pm, JAMIE MICHAELS and SEVERIN BROWNE play Russ & Julie's House Concerts; at 8 pm, CALAVERAS plays the Gelencser House Concert series in Claremont; at 8 pm, GERRY O'BEIRNE plays a house concert in L.A.; the innovative “ORPHEUS AND EURIDICE” is tonight only at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center in Pasadena.
SUNDAY, November 20
At 11 am, BONNE MUSIQUE ZYDECO and SWEET BABY J'AI perform get-up-and-dance Southern Louisiana zydeco in Hollywood; at 11 am, MELISSA GREEN plays the Matinee Kids Concert at McCabe's; at 3 pm, TARAFUL USTUROI (THE GARLIC BAND) is at the Coffee Gallery Backstage; 5-9 pm, “JONNY WHITESIDE'S MESSAROUND” is at Viva Cantina in Burbank; at 7 pm, FOLDING MR. LINCOLN brings their acoustic folk-Americana to the Coffee Gallery Backstage; at 7 pm, the splendid APRIL VERCH is at McCabe's; at 8 pm, it's the monthly “VARIETY NIGHT” with featured artists CALI ROSE & CRAIG BRANDAU and the sign-up-in-advance OPEN MIC, at Boulevard Music in Culver City.
All the details are in the Spotlight Events section, at
Our # 2 Story
“CRITICAL LANGUAGE IN ACTION” CLASS SATURDAY, PRESENTED BY OCCUPY L.A.
Whether or not you are inclined toward the whole “Occupy” Movement, this is a fine opportunity to learn about the use and impact of specific words in specific settings and circumstances. All artists should understand that words are powerful and always laden with impressions and images. Whether those are the ones you wish to communicate, or are even aware of what subtext you create is often the difference of how successful you are in attracting or repelling others with your cause.
Of course, the need for those in the Occupy movement to understand and utilize this is obvious, from favorably impressing anyone passing by to communicating at a stressful moment with the police or anyone who may not be committed to nonviolence.
This Saturday, November 19, Noon-1 pm, “CRITICAL LANGUAGE IN ACTION” will be taught by CHRISTIAN W. CHUN, PhD., of USC's Rossier School of Education. It's free at “Occupy Los Angeles” on the grounds of L.A. City Hall, in downtown L.A.
The goal of the one-hour session is to provide “An understanding of how language is mobilized in the service of power and how it shapes, frames, and privileges certain representations about, and of, the world; how 'language forms' help construct certain meanings; critical discourse analysis of the prevailing economic discourses of the past 30 years; how everyday people can mobilize a critical language in action in service of social justice and radical transformation.” It's free.
Our # 3 Story
ELIZA GILKYSON REMIXES "BEAUTIFUL WORLD" AS SALUTE TO “OCCUPY” MOVEMENT
Red House Records, the St. Paul, Minnesota “new folk” label, just released a newly remixed version of ELIZA GILKYSON's song "Beautiful World." It's been out there in its original mix as the title track to her 2008 album, the CD acclaimed as “her masterpiece” by “All Music.”
The press statement from Red House notes, “The album and song are still timely today, especially in light of the protests going on around the world.”
Music in support of the “Occupy” protests has already come from other Red House artists, with support from the label's PR office. A recent press release began with the words, “In solidarity with the 'Occupy Wall Street' protestors, Americana songwriter PIETA BROWN is offering her song 'I Want It Back'...”
Now Gilkyson is stepping up to the plate. She says, "I originally wrote the song as a means of staying inspired and engaged in the struggle to defend our beautiful world against the ravages of humankind."
But this time around, Eliza adds, "I am excited to release this provocative new remix, in solidarity with a struggle that is more crucial than ever. My son, CISCO RYDER, worked up a very cool reinterpretation of 'Beautiful World.' Utilizing drum loops and an old school Moog synthesizer he creates a whole new electronica perspective while still retaining aspects of the original folk elements."
Coming hot on the heels of Eliza's hit folk album “Roses at the End of Time,” released in May, this newly remixed single became available digitally on November 1. The single was immediately highlighted on iTunes as one of the "New & Noteworthy" singer-songwriter releases.
In support of her newest album and this newly remixed single, Eliza is touring across the country. She's playing solo shows and dates with the Billboard-charting folk supergroup RED HORSE, the trio she shares with fellow Red House Records recording artists JOHN GORKA & LUCY KAPLANSKY.
Meanwhile, proclamations of the movements' death are, as Mark Twain once observed, greatly exaggerated. This past Thursday brought a “National Day of Action” with marches on L.A.'s Financial District and similar concentrations of the empire of wealth in other cities. The original Occupy Wall Street protestors having just been evicted from the genesis site of Zucate Park in New York City, they marched to Wall Street itself. Unfortunately, the demonstrations in other cities have not been free of injuries and violent confrontation with law enforcement, as they have been in L.A., where the movement works closely with LAPD Chief Charlie Beck.
Protestors in L.A. who wanted to be arrested even wore special armbands to make it easy for everyone to differentiate them – marchers and police alike. The TV coverage spanned both cable news and local stations. As the protestors sat in a circle in the middle of the street awaiting arrest, one wondered why no one had taught them the old Civil Rights anthem, “We Shall Not Be Moved.” Music is still conspicuously absent from most situations that otherwise parallel past, large-scale protest / social change movements.
But, as we observed in last week's major special feature, (available at http://acousticamericana.blogspot.com/2011/11/so-whats-up-with-occupy-99-movement-is.html) this movement is different in a great many ways. To wit, a group organized as “Patriotic Millionaires” – really comprised of millionaires – lobbied Congress on Thursday to get their taxes raised, and to make it clear to Republicans on the 12-member Super Committee that they would oppose any effort for another extension of the Bush Administration's temporary tax cuts for the wealthy. The group's millionaire spokesman Charlie Fink said, “People are rioting in the streets because we're spending money we don't have and shifting the burden for that onto the 99 percent who don't have it.” He expressed empathy with the 99 percenters of the Occupy movement.
Strange that a group of millionaires gets it, but Congress doesn't. Of course, this Congress can't do anything else, either – except declare this week, that, for the purposes of school lunches, pizza is a vegetable – sulfides, sodium, high fructose corn syrup in the tomato sauce, et al, and that greasy french fries are vegetables, too. (Hey, at least they didn't call them Freedom Fries.)
Our # 4 Story
DOES THE OCCUPY / 99 % MOVEMENT STILL NEED A DEFINING SONG?
It's been one of the points we've made in several features in our series on the participation and influence of artists with the “Occupy” / 99% Movement: It's the only American protest / social change / you-name-it movement in modern history that has no anthem. As we detailed last week, the movement is heavily inclusive of young people who don't know the rich legacy and catalog of songs from the Civil Rights era. And because this movement is so much about text messages and cyber communication, the movement conspicuously lacks an orientation toward songs sung by groups.
We keep expecting to hear or receive a new one, written by a songwriter among the occupiers. We keep expecting a song to go mega-viral on the web, but it still hasn't happened. Neither has a song by any of the more prominent recording artists become the movement's anthem, though several are out there (we tell you about two in the preceding piece.)
Of course, an old Dylan song, or a Joan Baez song, or a hundred-year-old labor organizing song, or a hundred-and-fifty-year-old song from slaves yearning for freedom could just as easily make a comeback. Or it might be one by someone else.
Then we had one of those Homer Simpson “D'oh” moments. We might have had the song all along.
The following song lyrics were published here in the Guide, just before the Occupy Movement began. They were included in Ross Altman's obituary for the man who wrote the song, the late, and always very formidable songwriter, Ken Graydon.
We commend it to you and believe Thanksgiving makes it especially appropriate.
“It’s Time To Start Singing Again,” by Ken Graydon
He wrote songs in the sixties that prodded the conscience of the nation
And the words that he chose to use mirrored our own indignation
And some called him Bobby and some called him Phil
Or Richard or Johnny or Len
Now the voices have changed but the message sounds clear
It’s time to start singing again.
So give me your words. Tell me what’s on your mind
Show me what needs to be shown
Come raise up your voices and pour out your song
Let me know I’m not singing alone.
From Selma to Birmingham, Chicago, New York and Seattle
He sang us the news and the hopes and the fears of the battle
‘Till it blew in the wind and it hammered and rang
And the whole land was singing and then
It shimmered and echoed and faded away
Now it’s time to start singing again
Now the years have gone ‘round and the circle’s come full in its turning
And it’s time to be heard while liberty’s torch is still burning
For there’s power in music that can’t be denied
And it comes ‘round again and again
But no one can listen if nobody sings
So come and start singing again.
(Transcribed from Ken’s website, www.kengraydon.com, by Ross Altman, for the obituary he wrote about Ken, just before the Occupy movement began.)
Our # 5 Story
FOLKIE SARAH McQUAID IS TOURING LIKE A ROCK STAR
We didn't make it to SARAH McQUAID's only L.A. area show, last month at the “Living tradition” series in Anaheim. It was our loss. Now, having just concluded her 40-show US tour, she's deep into making the rounds of the better folk venues in the UK, a trek that takes her into December.
Renowned for her warm, engaging stage presence, Sarah McQuaid is a versatile and beguiling performer. In addition to her own elegantly crafted originals, she interprets traditional Irish and Appalachian folk songs, Elizabethan ballads, 1930s jazz numbers, surprise covers and lively guitar instrumentals with panache and poignance.
In late September, she showcased at FARM – the Folk Alliance Region Midwest Conference – in Illinois. That came midway through her jam-packed US tour.
Sarah spent some time in 2010 in Nashville, co-writing with industry heavyweights, including THOMM JUTZ, Nanci Griffith’s guitarist for five years and producer of numerous albums including Nanci’s “The Loving Kind,” and PETER CRONIN, former Associate Editor of Billboard magazine and Creative Director at Bug Music, where he worked with artists and writers including Johnny Cash, Rosanne Cash, the Dixie Chicks and John Prine.
Along the way, she's added considerably to her accolades with latest CD, ”I Won't Go Home 'til Morning.” It's enjoying good airplay on the BBC and on NPR's “Thistle and Shamrock” and “The World Beat” – which you don't know if you live in L.A., since we are the only place with two NPR affiliate stations and no NPR music shows. Hence, part of our job is telling you about what everyone else hears everywhere else in America, but we can't hear because we're in L.A.
Sarah's new album was done with GERRY O'BEIRNE and TREVOR HUTCHINSON. Gerry produced and Trevor engineered both of her previous solo albums and played on all three. The newest album focuses primarily on original songs, including several songs co-written with O'Beirne.
Here are a few quotes about Sarah McQuaid's live performance and her new CD.
"Brilliant musicianship, a warm and welcoming stage presence and a voice as rich, matured and knowing as the finest thrice-distilled Irish malt whiskey." - Geoff Wallis, fRoots.
"Sparkling guitar and compelling alto voice ... reminiscent of Pentangle’s best efforts ... a gentle and magical recording that I will return to time and again." - Tom Druckenmiller, Sing Out!
"Likely to make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck." -- Aled Jones, BBC Radio 2.
"She sings with so much beauty – and with utmost respect for the folklore behind each song and ballad." - Gene Shay, WXPN, Philadelphia.
"A must for everyone who loves a CD you can put on again and again, and never tire of it." - Roz Larman, FolkScene, Los Angeles.
"Folk music as it should be sung -- warm, gentle and real." -- Alf McCarthy, Late Date, RTE Radio 1.
"An unreserved thumbs-up. Captivating performance, great songs, playing and singing. Sarah was also totally professional, charming and low maintenance. What more could you ask for?" - Gerry Evans, TwickFolk, London.
"Pure magic!! We are running our folkclub for 16 years now but I never experienced such a thrilling interaction between artist and audience." -- Piet Snellen, De Fookhook, Netherlands.
"Quietly expressive and supremely affecting performances ... Not a weak link anywhere in earshot ... This is a truly lovely record." -- NetRhythms
At Sarah's shows, people “sing a song with her and live in harmony.” She recruits singers via her website to sing a part in her original six-part canon, so every concert becomes an especially effective bit of audience participation. We'll let you know when she gets back to perform in Southern Cal. Meanwhile, check out her downloads and CDs (Christmas is coming). There's plenty at www.sarahmcquaid.com
Our # 6 Story
EAR BUDS DO CAUSE HEARING LOSS
A new Johns Hopkins medical study reveals that as many as 48 million Americans may have hearing loss caused by using ear buds. In many cases, the damage has already occurred, but the hearing loss is not evident immediately and may not be obvious for years.
The study recommends wearing over-the-ear earphones instead (like the old headphones, though modern versions aree much smaller and lighter). It also recommends the obvious: not cranking the volume to drown-out outside noises.
Lest anyone think that hearing loss is simply an inability to hear as well, often it is not. It frequently takes the form of tinnitus, a constant, unending, day-and-night ringing in the ears that can be quite loud and drive you crazy.
So, spare your fellow carpool and bus and subway riders the annoyance of all that shh-thoom that escapes your ear buds and propagates for 20 feet in every direction while pummeling your own ears into tone deafness. This is one area where it's easy to protect yourself – and your longevity as a musician and music aficionado who wants to hear all the lyrics and all the instruments.
Our # 7 Story
INVITATION TO ARTISTS: 30th ANNUAL LOS ANGELES HOLIDAY CAROLING FESTIVITIES
(or participate in YOUR city...)
Each year, Grammy, music Oscar, and music Emmy winners and nominees join other happy musicians and smiling, singing folks in show biz to bring cheer to shut-ins and experience plenty of joy themselves. And VINCENT J. LEINEN, organizer and founder of this and 20 other events like it across America, wants you to take part.
This year will mark three decades that Vincent has rounded-up his musical friends, expanded the circle to include more, and celebrated the Holidays with those who might have had no sense of anything special were it not for his corps of carolers.
And you should know this is no casual troupe. While it requires no advance preparation on the part of the bulk of participants, it is organized with precision you'll hardly notice. But the gentle presence of Vincent does, and he has this operating like a well-oiled machine. Rest assured, the time you spend doing this on that one afternoon and evening will matter, and you will know that you and the part you played mattered. It's a fine way to get the feeling of the Holidays that we're supposed to have and seldom achieve amidst pushy shoppers and electronic reindeer.
Vincent has asked The Guide to spread the word to artists and those who like to sing. He says, “You’re extended a special invitation to support, promote, and participate in the 30th Annual Los Angeles Holiday Caroling festivities on Sunday, December 4, 2011, at numerous senior care centers and a restaurant located in the West San Fernando Valley to bring happiness and/or enlightenment to the elderly, care-givers, and participants during the holiday season.”
He explains, “The tradition of caroling for the elderly began for me in high school while singing at local senior care centers with the St. Mary Catholic Youth Association in Dow City, Iowa (pop. 498). It then continued while attending the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Now, as a resident of Los Angeles, the tradition has since evolved, grown, and expanded into a series of festivities celebrated across the country. This includes the large-scale, must attend holiday event (est. 250 participants) in Los Angeles.”
While Vincent always recruits star power, that's not enough for him. He emphasizes, “This enjoyable and rewarding community service project is open to entertainers, singers and musicians of all talent levels and ages. It is a very fulfilling opportunity to give and to receive joy, happiness, and holiday spirit to and from the elderly residents, care-givers, and participants, while enhancing one’s own perspective or appreciation of life, health, and family.”
He sums it up, “Bottom line: Everyone greatly benefits from the festivities.”
It all happens Sunday, December 4, 2011. You'll spend the time from 4 -7:15 pm caroling at senior care centers in Canoga Park, and that includes a couple of stage shows for the enjoyment of those able to come to the dining hall in their facility. The time is used much more effectively than you can imagine. The evening concludes from 7:30-9:30 pm with a “Post Caroling Party” ay a local eatery.
Your editor will always remember his impromptu part in one of the stage shows, when Vincent suddenly chose him to trade lead vocals with a genuine opera diva, while backed by a Grammy winning guitarist, Grammy-nominated fiddler, famous pianist, and the drummer from the Tonight Show. And you can't get a more appreciative audience.
Vincent will launch “a full media blitz” to promote the event to many major Los Angeles metro radio, television, and newspaper outlets. For Vincent, it's all pretty simple. He says, “Together we have the power to make a difference and to make the world a better place!” and he adds to all who take part, “Thank you for blessing my life and the lives of others. Happy Holidays!”
Still, this is a major production, so you really do need to commit to it and RSVP to Vincent promptly, especially if you play an instrument and want to bring it for the stage show or as a strolling troubadour, accompanied by additional vocalists or others with instruments.
There's plenty of info on all of Vincent's caroling dates, across the country, at www.ReachfortheStars.com/Caroling
To sign-up for December 4, OR TO TAKE PART IN ONE OF THE OTHER CITIES across America where Vincent brings caroling to shut-ins, or for more info, contact Vincent J. Leinen at 818-342-9336, or e-mail him at BD754@lafn.org
Our # 8 Story
SPEND THANKSGIVING AT THE LEARNING GARDEN IN VENICE
It's become a tradition over the past few years, and you'd be hard pressed to find a place that represents the true spirit of this special holiday with more of a sense of genuine gratitude.
Bring a dish to feed 10 and you’re invited. Plus, you can bring your acoustic instrument and jam with others.
But let's get back to the essence of why this is so special. Each year, participants include the Victims of Torture, people from all over the world whose escape to America as their new home and sanctuary was often a matter of life and death. Some were prisoners of conscience in their home countries. Others were tortured by military juntas or opposing sides in power struggles or civil wars. Look into their faces at this event and you see the meaning of Thanksgiving.
It's held on the large, tree-shaded patio. Garden Master and roots-acoustic musician DAVID KING says, “Everyone is invited to bring whatever dish, 'potluck' style, something you feel is the very embodiment of Thanksgiving. We have the turkey lined-up as well as mashed potatoes – everything else is open for everyone. You can't have too much of anything on Thanksgiving! Too much food for only two hands! In keeping with our ecological policies, please bring your own plates and service ware to help us be a low-waste facility. We've always had a wonderful Thanksgiving event with all the typical trimmings - and usually a few surprises thrown-in, as well. We've come to love the offerings of food from a diverse group of people from different continents and cultures. We extend an invitation to you and your family to join us on Thanksgiving Day to carve-up a turkey and probably a faux-turkey as well.”
From 11 am to 2 pm on Thanksgiving Day, the 7th annual “THANKSGIVING AT THE LEARNING GARDEN” hosts the “Program for Torture Victims” staff and clients in celebrating this American holiday, with potluck holiday feasting on traditional and international food, and Americana roots music. The feast is at noon, but come at 11 am to meet one another and socialize.
It's at the Learning Garden, at Venice High School, on the southeast corner of Walgrove Avenue and Venice Boulevard, at 13000 Venice Bl, Venice 90066. For specific instructions on how to get there or other information, call the Garden at 310-722-3656 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
David adds, “Those who have been to our Thanksgiving in the past know this is a very special way to observe all we are grateful for and the spirit of sharing is truly the spirit of this season. We eat early to allow everyone the opportunity to enjoy Thanksgiving later in your home. The weather gods have always smiled on us as we eat outside on the patio in The Learning Garden. Still, dress warm, our Garden is always cooler than one would think it should be. We hope you will join our celebration.”
Wherever you go, HAPPY THANKSGIVING !
Our # 9 Story
THANKSGIVING – A BIT O' HISTORY...
Ahh, THANKSGIVING, the annual gastrointestinal festival, when too many people subject themselves to waaaay too much food. For many, televised football is an integral part of the fete, as are the insipid electronic turkey gobble noises that accompany anything on TV. But before you spend money you don't have, and get elbowed at all the orgies of consumerism the day after Thanksgiving, pause and consider (and enjoy) a little about the holiday.
The Pilgrims, who were essentially refugees from England, arrived in the New World on December 21, 1620, at a place they named Plimouth. (Yes, that IS how they spelled it.) Their voyage had been arduous, and their survival in their first year was tenuous. They were assisted in basic survival by Native American Indians, with whom they celebrated their “Thanks Giving” nearly a year after their arrival.
While the approximate anniversary became a New England holiday of sorts, it took nearly 20 years of effort in the 1800s by Sara Josepha Hale before President Abraham Lincoln issued an 1864 proclamation of Thanksgiving Day as the last Thursday in November.
But that lacked the authority of an official holiday. It would come under President Franklin Roosevelt, though he set the date a week earlier, to space it farther from Christmas during economic hard times.
Some people celebrated both Thanksgiving Days, a week apart – there was some confusion, since tradition is hard to alter. Congress, during the FDR years, passed an act returning Thanksgiving to the last Thursday of November, and making it an official holiday. (That was back when Congress actually knew how to do something.)
No turkey has been safe, ever since – except two, each year, who receive a Presidential Pardon. And, as we’ve all seen, many turkeys have gone to Washington, and some have sought Presidential Pardons…
As we all prepare our turkey demolition plans, we’re thankful for the WONDERFUL abundance of live music – as members of the audience and when we’re on stage – and we’re thankful for ALL the good things in our lives!
MORE STUFF >>>>>>> Resources, etc
Our VENUE DIRECTORY
...with OVER 500 acoustic-music-friendly venues in Southern California, is available at
RECENT EDITIONS of The Guide's NEWS FEATURES are still available!
Just check our archive! Read the contents bar on the left side of the page at www.acousticamericana.blogspot.com and click the appropriate month.
The MOST RECENT past editions (last 30 days) are easy to find! Just use the direct url's provided below, PLUS many recent feature stories and reviews are available individually at their own urls...
Special Features from the Guide, at individual addresses...
“OCCUPY WALL STREET / OCCUPY EVERYWHERE” – our series of special Feature Stories, are available as individual items including READER FEEDBACK.
The Guide's special series examines events with an emphasis on the roles being played by artists, and / or the implications for the future of the arts and for arts & music funding. Each part and our recent related features are still available – and still receiving (and posting) your comments.
Listed from most recent to earliest, here's how to find them:
> SO, WHAT'S UP WITH THE “OCCUPY / 99%” MOVEMENT? IS A “LEAGUE OF NON-VOTERS” COMING? IS MUSIC PLAYING A ROLE? from the Guide's Nov 11, 2011 News Features edition, is available by itself, with YOUR COMMENTS. Here are a string of excerpts: “This protest movement is different in its modes of expression.” - “Is it a political or an economic or a social justice movement? Yes.” - “Could the masses that comprise the 99%, in and out of the movement, be induced by manipulators to feel deeper disillusionment, and “guided” to see no point in one thing in particular – voting? Yes.” - “An ultimate irony is coming: during the Civil Rights Movement, the disenfranchised fought for their rights to vote. Now, disillusioned masses might, in droves, give up entirely on the notion of bothering to vote.” - “The net effect isn't to make everyone fight for their rights. More people than ever are simply disgusted and sensing futility.” - “We may soon be governed by people who literally do not represent us, because too many of us see no point in fighting the overwhelming spending by corporations that purchase politicians to do things their way. With that conclusion reached, why vote? It's not individual or group apathy. It would be an intentional act, driven by entrenched and widespread disgust. It's the electoral equivalent of a sit-in. It will be tantamount to an organized 'League of Non-Voters.' ” - Of course, there's plenty more. Read it in full at
> ARTISTS JOIN “OCCUPY WALL STREET” AS UNEMPLOYMENT, ECONOMY WORSEN, The Guide's Oct 7, 2011 feature story, with YOUR COMMENTS, is available by itself. Here's an excerpt: “We should be talking about the exact form and structure of a new WPA and a new CCC to re-employ Americans with projects that will give us all a future legacy – like that we inherited from the enduring public works projects of the '30s. We could be building high-speed rail and alternatives to gas-guzzling automobiles and alternatives to polluting coal-fired power plants. We could be leading the world in high tech investment and encouraging math and science education with a vigorous space program, aimed at Mars, instead of pouring money and blood into the sands of Afghanistan. We could be creating jobs so that the 24% of the military enlistees, who go there because there are no other jobs, could find career work in improving our society and rebuilding it for their children's future... Instead, we are told that a tepid jobs bill is dead on arrival in the House of Representatives, even as we see record profits for companies that took our money to employ people overseas, but not here. We see money being used to make money without creating any jobs or benefits for our society in a time when meaningful, career-track jobs should be our key national priority. We're not building for the future. We're not even doing required maintenance on the gifts we received from our parents and grandparents. We hear politicians rant that government must charge the rich no taxes and make Capital Gains profits off-limits to taxation, altogether. We see bonuses paid to money manipulators who exported America's jobs even as they took bailouts from taxpayers. Rome is burning. They're buying Stradovari violins with our money.” Plus, there's a “Memo to those wallowing in Wall Street bonuses and bank bailout billions.” read it all at
> OF AUTOHARPS, JOBS BILLS, AND A VISION FOR OUR FUTURE (OR THE LACK OF IT) a feature that PRE-DATES the Occupy Movement by just two days, examining ways artists can oppose the “I've got mine, f--- you,” attitudes of the power elite, and fight against “a corporatocracy or an intolerant theocracy or a place of ruthless end-game capitalism.” It first ran in the Guide's Sep 15, 2011 edition; it's available by itself at
> 9-11's LEGACY: THE PART PLAYED BY ARTISTS, AND WHAT'S STILL TO BE DONE, is our feature that PRE-DATES the Occupy Movement, but presents several of what would be its focal points. It ran in the Guide's Sep 9, 2011 edition. Here's an excerpt: “Together, military over-commitments and a select few no-bid civilian defense contractors bankrupted our economy, cost us our space program, cost us any chance for spending on arts education, cost us renewal of our decaying bridges / highways / city streets / utility infrastructure, cost us building any major new public works projects, and essentially cost us our vision for the kind of 21st century future promised by '2001: A Space Odyssey.' Meanwhile, our drone-based wars have cost our troops unprecedented numbers of re-deployments to war zones, record numbers of suicides, and record numbers of PTSD cases that all but assure us a tragically plentiful supply of homeless disturbed individuals for decades to come... It's a fitting time to ask our politicians whether contrarian intransigence is worthy of their silenced constituents... or worthy of their constituents who rushed to help that day and in the days and months following, and who now suffer as a result, yet receive little or no help from what should be a forever grateful nation.” And, “Just as Congress appears unable to help 9-11's surviving first responders, both political parties appear bereft of any real vision for a better future for all of us.” It's available at
> CALLING STEPHEN COLBERT: HELP! WE'VE BEEN COMPROMISED! is the Guide's Aug 4, 2011 feature that PRE-DATES the Occupy Movement by six weeks. It looks at the ability of Super PACS and big money to control politics. It's a scathing and satirical piece on the devastating and maddening manipulation of the people's money and what was and was not evident in the Debt Crisis, with MUCH reader feedback. It's available by itself at
> IS THE FUTURE OF ARTS FUNDING GONE IN AMERICA? is, for us, the feature story that started it all. It's the Guide's pioneering, in-depth July 18, 2011, feature, that PRE-DATES the Occupy Movement by two months, with analysis beyond Washington's maddening politics. It debunks the Debt Limit, spending cuts, and budget battles and examines the roots of issues that motivated Occupiers. It's available by itself, with a then-record-number of comments, at
OTHER recent SPECIAL FEATURES, available as individual items...
> PENN STATE, HERMAN CAIN, LINDSAY LOHAN: THE CULTURE OF CELEBRITY VS. THE AMERICAN CREED, a special feature from the Guide's 11-11-11 edition, is available by itself at
> MUSIC GOT US TO THE MOON – WHERE MIGHT IT YET TAKE US? a special feature from the Guide's Oct 27 edition, on the eve of NASA's final Mars lander, is available by itself at
> KEN GRAYDON MEMORIAL CONCERT BRINGS FITTING ADIOS ran in the Guide's Sep 15 edition. Ken was the best history-based songwriter we've ever known, bringing places and people and events to life with the freshness of a spring breeze. It's available by itself at
> IN MEMORIUM: JOEL OKIDA, MUSIC JOURNALIST EXTRAORDINAIRE, a consummate writer and all-around great guy, ran in the Guide's July 28, 2011 edition, available at
RECENT REVIEWS, available as individual items including READER FEEDBACK...
> REVIEWS – NEW SERIES TAKES A FRESH LOOK AT OLD RECORDINGS,
“ACROSS THE DIGITAL DIVIDE...” new ongoing series – fresh reviews of pre-digital era recordings; series explained, from the Guide's edition of Nov 3, 2011, available at
> REVIEW – ACROSS THE DIGITAL DIVIDE... “HOME SWEET HOME,” A CASSETTE TREASURE, from the Guide's edition of Nov 3, 2011, is available by itself at
> REVIEW – ACROSS THE DIGITAL DIVIDE (# 2)... “LIKE DESPERADOS” - JOHNNY CASH, WILLIE NELSON, MARTY ROBBINS, CHARLIE DANIELS BAND, OTHERS, from the Guide's edition of Nov 11, 2011, is available by itself at
Recent reviews of NEW releases:
> CD REVIEW – DAFNI, “SWEET TIME” from the Guide's News Features edition of Nov 3, 2011, is available by itself at
> CD REVIEW – “MOODY BLUEGRASS TWO...MUCH LOVE” WITH VINCE GILL, RICKY SKAGGS, SAM BUSH, & MORE, GETS CRITICAL ACCLAIM is in the Sep 30, 2011 edition at
COMPLETE WEEKLY EDITIONS
...from the past 30 days, including everything as published, though NOT including reader feedback received on any feature published individually.
(All past editions are available, by digging in the archive at acousticamericana.blogspot.com)
November 11 FULL edition is available at
and the stories are:
1) It's the Century's Only Perfect Palindrome Day, 11 11 11
2) Giant Civil War Reenactment and Period Music this Weekend in Moorpark
3) Veteran's Day Premiere for New Video, “I'll Go (A Soldier's Oath),” & a Sunday Event
4) This Weekend's Quick Roundup of Events
5) Extravaganza for Recording Artists this Weekend in West L.A.
6) “Put The Fork in Hunger,” Pasadena's Largest Food Drive, is this Weekend
7) ROLAND WHITE BAND Plays this Week, with Top Bluegrassers East & West
8) REVIEW – Across the Digital Divide (# 2)... “Like Desperados” -
Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Marty Robbins, Charlie Daniels Band, others
9) So, What's Up with the “Occupy / 99%” Movement?
Is a “League of Non-Voters” Coming? Is Music Playing a Role?
10) Penn State, Herman Cain, Lindsay Lohan: the Culture of Celebrity vs.
the American Creed
November 3 FULL edition is available at
and the stories are:
Late additions, added after publication:
> “JOE HILL NIGHT,” Sunday, November 6
> "GIVE ME THE BANJO - Arts from the Blue Ridge Mountains" premieres Friday, Nov 4,
on PBS - TV.
November 3 edition, as originally published...
1) Bluegrass on DAVID LETTERMAN Thursday Night
2) ROSS ALTMAN Performs “SONGS OF JOE HILL” Friday Afternoon
3) Saturday is Folk Concert-Crazy in Southern Cal...
4) GRAM PARSONS 65th B'day Tribute at Ronnie Mack's Barn Dance, November 7
5) GORDON LIGHTFOOT Playing Local Shows November 8 & 9
6) Nominees THE TUMBLING TUMBLEWEEDS and JOYCE WOODSON to Perform Together En-Route to Western Music Awards
7) CD Review – DAFNI, “Sweet Time”
8) Reviews – New Series Takes a Fresh Look at Old Recordings,
“Across the Digital Divide...”
9) Review – Across the Digital Divide... “Home Sweet Home,” a Cassette Treasure
October 27 FULL edition is available at
and the stories are:
1) Irish, Celtic Music Plentiful for “SAMHAIN,” Original Halloween / Celtic New Year
2) “TWO SIDES OF CELTIC” Show at Caltech Saturday Night
3) Guerrilla Art Returns with Mayor On-Board – May The Fork Be with You
4) Music Got Us to the Moon – Where Might it Yet Take Us?
The biggest and final Mars lander touches down in November. Is there meaning for Artists?
5) STAGECOACH and COACHELLA Will Grow to 3 Days in 2012
6) Strong Mountain Roots / Bluegrass / Newgrass Double-Bill on Friday
7) YOU can still add your comment at the HUGE RESPONSE to our feature,
“Artists Join 'OCCUPY WALL STREET'...”
Questions? Comments? Contact us through our Blogspot site or by email at
tied to the email@example.com
YES, we invite you to add YOUR comments!
You can always find the LATEST EDITION of THE ACOUSTIC AMERICANA MUSIC GUIDE, with separate links for:
1) the latest NEWS FEATURES, with feature stories / reviews / editorials / current acoustic music happenings / "heads up" notices to buy advance tickets for shows likely to sell-out / news you can't find anywhere else from and about the world of acoustic and Americana music and artists;
2) the latest SPOTLIGHT EVENTS section, with new and updated info on festivals / artist workshops / schedules and calendars for concerts, club gigs, live music happenings, acoustic & Americana music-related events / and more;
3) The Guide's VENUE DIRECTORY of over 500 acoustic music-friendly venues in Southern California – the places TO HEAR MUSIC, or CONTACT TO GET GIGS.
It's all available 24/7 (& frequently updated!) at ~
www.acousticmusic.net or at
- or follow any of the links in the fifteen web sites and web groups that carry the Guide’s weekly News Features.
Entire contents copyright (c) 2011, Lawrence Wines & Tied to the Tracks. All rights reserved.