Goat Rodeo Sessions, A [redacted] review

Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, and Chris Thile, what could possibly go wrong? A Goat Rodeo, thats what, or maybe a new album?

One of the more polite definitions from urbandictionary.com says this about a goat rodeo:

A chaotic situation, often one that involves several people, each with a different agenda/vision/perception of what’s going on; a situation that is very difficult, despite energy and efforts, to instill any sense or order into
And the less polite version goes like this…
A situation that is hopelessly fucked up. The worst of three stages of goat-ness. First is the Goat Rope, defined else where.

Then there is the utilitraian Goat Fuck. This normally requires a serious amount of work to unfuck.

Lastly, there is the Goat Rodeo. The worst of the three, it is beyond even profanity. It describes a situation that involves many individuals screw ups, and implies that the fuck up is already well underway, meaning that there is no hope in stopping the mess.

I had a long winded, metaphor laced literary style diatribe/review constructed right here, but my grandma always said if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all. So I’ve redacted that portion and leave you with this advice.
If you are invited to a Goat Rodeo, don’t go.

Fish Scales at Floyd Fest

It’s been a slow week here at the Fiddle and Creel. Rivers are blown out and we’ve busy doing a bunch of none Bluegrass or fly fishing related things. Extra work, t-ball games that sort of thing. So to fill the void in our lives, here’s a good video of Tony and Dawg playing one of our favorites, Fish Scales at Floyd Fest. Jazzy and fishy and bluegrassy, right in the wheel house, or should I say wheel hoss, of course that’s short for wheel horse, not house, but you know what I mean.

Freaky Fiddle Friday – Christian Howes

This week’s edition of Freaky Fiddle Friday features a Columbus native, Christian Howes playing with a truly great guitarist Robin Ford. Howes called us 5 or 6 years ago about him sitting in with the Wagoneers but we never could get the scheduling figured out, at the time he was living in NY but was in Columbus a few week ends a month. I think he found us through the violin loft, but I can’t say for sure.

As one of the more expressive and emotional fiddle players around he really holds back at the beginning  of on this tune, but dude does he unleash some freaky fiddlin at the end. Whoa – he blows the doors off of it, with some crazy distortion.

Though we’ve never heard him play Bluegrass, we know he can. And NO there is nothing April fools-ish about this, just plain old freaky fiddlin.

Yogi Berra explains Jazz

A very kind person shared a great piece of Yogi Berra-ism with me. Priceless! See Below.

Interviewer: What do you expect is in store for the future of jazz?

Yogi: I’m thinkin’ there’ll be a group of guys who’ve never met talkin’ about it all the time…

Interviewer: Can you explain jazz?

Yogi: I can’t, but I will. 90% of all jazz is half improvisation. The other half is the part people play while others are playing something they never played with anyone who played that part. So if you play the wrong part, its right. If you play the right part, it might be right if you play it wrong enough. But if you play it too right, it’s wrong.

Interviewer: I don’t understand.

Yogi: Anyone who understands jazz knows that you can’t understand it. It’s too complicated. That’s whats so simple about it.

Interviewer: Do you understand it?

Yogi: No. That’s why I can explain it. If I understood it, I wouldnt know anything about it.

Interviewer: Are there any great jazz players alive today?

Yogi: No. All the great jazz players alive today are dead. Except for the ones that are still alive. But so many of them are dead, that the ones that are still alive are dying to be like the ones that are dead. Some would kill for it.

Interviewer: What is syncopation?

Yogi: That’s when the note that you should hear now happens either before or after you hear it. In jazz, you don’t hear notes when they happen because that would be some other type of music. Other types of music can be jazz, but only if they’re the same as something different from those other kinds.

Interviewer: Now I really don’t understand.

Yogi: I haven’t taught you enough for you to not understand jazz that well.

I was just reminded, only 22 days until pitchers and catchers report to spring training. Go Redlegs!

The Deadly Gentlemen, Carry Me to Home – A Review.

 

The Free Downloadable - Deadly Gentlemen

 

This morning I was made aware of the Deadly Gentlmen thanks to a post over on the Bluegrass Blog covering the Crooked Still folks. The Deadly Gentlemen’s  album “Carry Me to Home” is available for FREE download, gotta like that.

The Deadly Gentlemen, if we are to believe their own bio info, are a young super group of wunderkinds including Dawg’s son Sam on Bass. A genetic winning lottery ticket like being the son of the greatest madolin player in history gives them a huge leg up on the competition, but lets put that fact aside because in the end thats pretty immaterial to the musical properties and merits of the band.

I really don’t want to be a hater, and most who know me would say I’m not. I want to like this stuff, because in general its exploring new territory on the instruments that I love. Its breaking new ground, and there is something to say for that alone, I totally respect that.

But in the end, the album comes off like the long-lost never-before-heard bluegrass tracks form a bizzaro version of Phish’s Junta album, and not in a good way. The lyrics are basically machine gun delivery with multi-part harmony leads. I’m sure it is impressive in a bar, and plays very well with lots of screaming adoring fans. I’m sure they are pretty good live, and have a quite a following, if for nothing else than the fact that they are nice looking young white kids playing Bluegrass instruments. But man, it gets old, real quick. There isn’t a singable catchy hook any where in sight. The entire album is a barren wasteland of unpleasant acoustic art rock. It’s a beyond the thunder dome, post apocalyptic, scatterbrained , short attention span, Ritalin chewing, mess.

Its the vocals stupid. Its just way too much over the top yelling and crazy ADHD cut-and-paste Hip-hop contributions by the supporting voices. That, and I guess they never got the memo that Trey doesn’t have a very good singing voice and that imitating him doesn’t turn out well.

Although, for the folks that wish Phish would have been an all acoustic bluegrass band with amazing chops, these are your peeps.

The instrumentation is pretty good for the most part, but the banjo stuff is odd and never really gives it to you like you want it. The fiddle playing is outstanding but again is held to a bizzare cut and paste riffyness that never gets its done. The mandolin playing is basically relegated to rhythm with only a few leads and is disappointing. Like imagine if Chris Thile never blew your mind with a solo and thats pretty much the gist of it, a lot of fancy chopping tricks and not much more. I mean even with all this singing and shouting and fancy licks going on, never, not once did I find my self thinking Ah this good stuff right here. Its like one giant intro, with no pay off. Its like a joke without a punch line.

And oddly enough, in a testament to how tastes change over time, this is a band that 10 years ago I would have thought was the coolest thing since sliced bread. I would have dragged my then-to-be wife to the show, where she would look at me after two songs and said these guys suck, lets go to Dick’s Den.

That being said its worth the cost of admission, free 🙂

Now if you want to hear some guys who can really let you have it and never let up, not even for a minute, check out the Drowsy Lads. It ain’t Bluegrass, but it sure is good!