Tuesday, September 2, 2014

High Horse - Buffalo NY

Thank You Pete! Look for a CD review soon...

We're writing it as we go along...
-2010 Buffalo Night-Life Magazine Music Award Nominee (Best Niagara Falls Band)
-2011 Buffalo Night-Life Magazine Music Award Winner (Best Niagara Falls Band)
Classic covers & originals...

Genre: Good music
Members: Peter Vogt (lead vocals); Dan Sturner (keyboards, vocals); Chuck DeRose (guitar, vocals); Eli Porter (bass, groove); Sandy Belsky (drums)


Current Events

Performers, clubs, show promoters and booking agents feel free to send any happening Event flyers, in jpg picture file form, to jtellfotos@yahoo.com and I will post it to help promote your event on this Current Events post. Thank you.

Yesterday Vs. Tomorrow - Buffalo NY

Yesterday Vs. Tommorow CD release party 8/24 @ The Forvm.

Onward and upward with the Aurora Borealis CD review!
Listened to "A Song For All My Friends" first thing today and I was drawn into the song by the mellow, spacy intro. The vocals and keyboard come together to create a great intro. The vocals bring the energy up and the drums follow suit slowing building and bringing in the rock and roll energy. The band uses elements of alternative/new wave and punk rock music to create a great rockin' sound. I can hear and feel the raw, energetic energy of the band in this song.
Song #16 proves that this band is creative and open minded when it comes to creating great, musical soundscapes together in the studio. With it's swirling sitar sounds #16 is a super neat intro for A Song For All My Friends.
"Steampunk Hero" as the song title would suggest, is a upbeat, high energy, alternative rock song. I was reminded of Jimmy Eat World when I listened to this song.
"Grey" sounds like a groovy, tropical vacation getaway song. Sweet percussive track coupled with a perfect guitar sound. Great background soundscape.
"Northern Lights" sounds like the soundtrack from a live, electrical generator. Electrifyingly great intro for "Pt. ii"...
"Pt. ii" sounds surprisingly like a song that could've come straight from the 80's. I grew up in the 80's so I like the new wave stuff that MTV used to play 24/7. Great atmospheric guitar track on "Pt. ii".
"Noise Color Excess" sounds like the intro for "Goodbye, Goodnight". The chaotic "Noise Color Excess" serves as the perfect intro for the melodic "Goodbye, Goodnight". The vocals of Jesse Kaufman remind me of Robert Smith from The Cure on this song. The saxophone is a great sounding addition to "Goodbye, Goodnight".
Who is this "Mark Rothko" guy anyway? He must be cool enough to inspire YVT to write a song, so he must be good people. Anyway "Mark Rothko" sounds like a perfectly mixed combo platter of U2 and Coldplay. This song must be killer when the band plays it live, with it's soaring vocals and powerful drum track.
"Sprawl Song Singalong" is a acoustic romp that is simply simple enough to get you to clapping and singing along.
"You Look Like Sunshine" sounds like a love song. Great, rhyming lyrics on this song.

...to be continued . . .

Basic YVT Info
Founded 2011
Genre: Pretentious Indie Rock
Jesse Kaufman
Joshua Keller
Preston Cofta
John DeJac
Hometown Buffalo, NY
Record Label Independent
Influences:Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, Andy Kaufman, Pavement, Christopher Lloyd
Contact Info
Website http://yesterdayvstomorrow.bandcamp.com/
Press Contact yesterdayvstomorrow@gmail.com

Special thanks to Jesse and YVT.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Pig-A-Palooza - Ransomville, NY

Pig-A-Palooza 10! 

Niagara Counties premier music, food and fun festival, will take place on September 13, 2014 on the Ransomville Free Methodist Church grounds (3924 Ransomville Rd, Ransomville NY, 14131) from 4-8pm. Pig-A-Palooza is a no cost, non-profit event. There is no mandatory entrance fee or cost for the activities. There will be fresh smoked pulled pork sandwiches with all the fixens, pizza, beef hot dogs, cold drinks, coffee and cookies, with two food lines for quicker service. This year, recording artists out of Nashville Brian and Christa Yak will open the night followed by the voice of Keri Cardinale and The Soul Purpose Band. Also appearing on stage at 7pm, the Injest comedy duo and juggling show. 

New events for 2014 include: two shows featuring motorcycle dragster David Althen, burning rubber and wheelies on the strip and the Wing and Rotor club who will be flying from 4:45 to 5:15. Also at Pig-A-Palooza; The Primate Sanctuary, Shenandoah Acres pony rides and petting zoo, Wild Kritters Of Niagara, a bounce house, face painters, popcorn, the Corvette Car Club of WNY, the Cataract Cruisers, and much more. At 8pm sharp the night ends with a spectacular fireworks display. Pig-A-Palooza 10 is sponsored by over twenty local businesses , with over 1200 attendees from the Niagara and Erie County communities! Come and discover one of the year's best events in the Niagara River region. 
Our regular guests can tell you, come once and you'll be back next year!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Lost in Franklinville

Recently made a return trip to Franklinville to change a flat tire on my van after playing a great private party. It was an unforgettable experience so I decided to write a blog piece about my day in Franklinville.
Musicians: Beyond making sure that you bring all the music gear you need in preparation for an out of town gig, please be sure you have a spare tire with air in it and a jack with a tire iron in case you get a flat tire in the middle of nowhere ...out of cell phone range.
My return trip to Franklinville could have been avoided if only I had a spare tire.
Here's where my tour of Franklinville began, after playing a great private party I got a flat tire on the way home so not having a spare I had to leave my van in Franklinville, get a ride home and make a return trip.
This is where my frustration began...
After getting home I called 3 car parts stores, I learned that you can't just buy a rim, you have to special order them because car parts stores don't stock them and rims are very expensive.
I ended up calling a junkyard and bought a tire and rim for $50.
So after packing up my spare, a jack and a gas can full of gas my friend and I headed out to Franklinville to change my tire and go back home.
I brought my GPS and didn't bother printing out directions because my GPS got me to Franklinville on my initial trip.
Well my GPS was not fully charged and it died on the way out there, this was our first setback on the way out to Franklinville. After realizing we were lost my friend made a call and with some haphazard directions we were on our way...to getting lost again. After making a couple more calls and writing directions down we thought we were on our way...but being unfamiliar with Franklinville we got lost yet again. My friend and I decided to stop at a few houses to ask for directions, one of the locals finally helped us out and we finally ended up at our destination.
Changing a flat tire on a unlevel dirt road isn't easy. After my friend jacked up the van to change the flat he became overzealous and decided to take the flat tire off before the van was high enough to put the spare on. Well the jack was unlevel and after my friend pulled the flat tire off the jack fell forward and my van fell onto the ground, resting on the axle. This was after I asked my friend to lower the jack because it was unlevel.
After jacking up the van for a second time the spare tire was on and we were ready to continue our journey.
After getting lost yet again we were pulled over by the police because apparently someone called the cops on us because we were "going door to door trying to sell something".
This is where my frustration peaked and I started to become angry because we were only trying to ask for directions and now we were being interrogated by the police, great...just great.
I was already out of my vehicle when 2 more cop cars pulled up and unbelievably it started to pour!
I knew that the cops didn't believe our flat tire story so in my frustration I opened up my trunk and threw out the flat tire on the ground, well I almost got arrested for doing that. Supposedly I wasn't supposed to be "out of my vehicle" in the pouring rain during the traffic stop.
The first cop that pulled us over said we "scared the bejesus out of a couple of people" when we asked for directions, so after everything got sorted out one of the cops led us out of Franklinville.
After all was said and done what was supposed to take a few hours turned into a all day affair out in Franklinville.

What did I learn from this journey?
1. Make sure to have a spare tire before traveling to a out of town gig.
2. Always be sure to fully charge up my GPS!
3. Print out directions to and from any out of town location, just in case.
4. If you're lost in Franklinville don't stop at any houses and ask for directions.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

darling harbor - Buffalo NY

"Ladies and Gentlemen!"

darling harbor retro "truth in my lies" CD art ...


"ladies & gentlemen" is a uptempo, alt. rock/pop song that is very melodic. ladies & gentlemen is the kind of song that will stick in your head after a couple of listens...if you let it...
Great upbeat opening song, the acoustic guitar and vocal performances are super spectacular.

"house of brass" is a smart, well written song. It's obvious to me that darling harbor know how to compose a great song, adding melodic elements to the music to make the songs interesting to the ear. Hey!..Great gang vocal performances and drum track.

"new providence" starts with a great guitar/egg shaker intro and a melancholy vocal. The drums move the tempo of the song up and down from mellow to strong and driving. Good vocal dynamics on this song.

Do you need a new, original local band to check out? Well, darling harbor has "the answers" to your musical longings. Great drum shuffle and bass guitar performance on this one. The melodic lyrics provide all "the answers" about darling harbor.

"getting better, getting there" continues in the same vein as "the answers"...mixing in a guitar solo for some super rock awesomeness...

"sons and daughters" closes this CD out with a bang...

I was quite impressed seeing the band live for the first time. Everyone in the band and everything sounded great together. I've seen the singer fronting a different band at babeville, and I must say darling harbor sounded much better than that band.


Special thanks to Dan.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Jimi Hendrix, The Bass Player?

Jimi Hendrix, The Bass Player?

Jimi Hendrix is perhaps best known for his blazing (literally blazing as evidenced by his '67 Monterey Pop Festival live performance) lead guitar playing and as his latest release "Valleys Of Neptune'" gains in popularity, his amazing talents are still being recognized and appreciated by every new generation of rock fan since his first appearance onto the music scene in the 60's.
Along with his amazing songwriting, guitar playing and singing, one of Jimi's lesser known talents was his amazing electric bass guitar playing, Jimi could also play the glockenspiel and the flute, amazingly enough, Jimi taught himself to play on all the instruments mentioned above.

He is also credited on several lesser know rock albums as an executive producer and as a guest performer, playing bass for the Buddy Miles penned track "Destruction Of Love" and produced Buddy's "Electric Church" solo album. Hendrix also played bass on an early, rare Crosby, Stills & Nash version of the Joni Mitchell penned song "Woodstock", which was written by Mitchell while she was stranded in a hotel room, not able to get to Woodstock where she was supposed to perform.

Hendrix, who preferred a right-handed Stratocaster flipped upside down and strung backwards, could also easily play a right handed, standard strung up guitar and bass. This unique talent can be compared to a baseball player batting from the left and right side of home plate, as opposed to just the right or the left. This special talent was captured on an album, when Hendrix guest starred on Timothy Leary's rare, narrative/music album.

Not only did Jimi perform many a bass line on his own recordings but he also took hold of the instrument live on a couple of famous occasions, one of which included an amazing, fiery performance of "Red House" from 1967, in which Noel Redding and Jimi switched instruments at The Olympia in Paris, France.

Having played guitar full-time before his gig with Jimi, Redding was a great guitar player in his own right. So switching instruments was no problem went it came to the multi-talented Jimi Hendrix Experience.

Jimi owned a 1965 Fender Jazz Bass on which he performed many a legendary bass line on in the recording studio. Jimi's bass playing is not present on his 1st album but he did record several bass lines on his "Axis: Bold As Love" album. Jimi can be heard playing bass on the "Bold As Love", "Spanish Castle Magic" & "She's So Fine" tracks.
Hendrix used his own 8-string Hagstrom bass guitar on the bass track of "Spanish Castle Magic", Hendrix added a uniqueness all his own to the track using the Octavia foot-pedal to enhance the recorded bass lines.

Hendrix also played the 4-string bass guitar on one of his most recognizable and widely known, recorded songs "All Along The Watchtower". A song in which Hendrix decided to record because he was such a big fan of Bob Dylan's original version.

Dave Mason originally recorded the bass line on the track, after Redding and Hendrix had a dispute in the studio. Hendrix recorded a new bass line and then re-recorded the bass after "hearing it a bit differently" on several occasions. If you listen to just the bass on this particular track you can hear it jump out of the mix on several occasions.

Hendrix's iconic album "Electric Ladyland" which included "All Along The Watchtower" featured Hendrix playing bass on "Have You Ever Been (To Electric Ladyland)" & "And The Gods Made Love".

During the sessions for this record, Hendrix plucked the 4-string on 2 of Noel Redding's original songs "Dream" & "Touch You", which were never completed and included on the album.

These sessions also produced "My Friend" a rare, Stephen Stills penned song, on which Hendrix sang and played guitar and bass on. This rare recording surfaced after Hendrix passed on.

Not only does Hendrix's songwriting, singing & guitar playing continue to influence a new generation of fans every year, his bass playing is equally recognized as an important part of the Hendrix legacy and has influenced many a bassist in it's own right. Who better to play the bass on some of Hendrix's most famous songs than Jimi himself. Who knew?

Experience Hendrix front and back cover featuring the "Official" First Rays Of The New Rising Sun CD release.

Hendrix Band of Gypsys CD Review

One of the Greatest Live Recording's of All Time

The Band Of Gypsys, first released in April of 1970, is one of Jimi Hendrix's most revered and impressive achievements of his brief , but memorable recording career. This CD was recorded on New Year's Eve of 1969/70 at the Fillmore East in New York City. The Band Of Gypsys was a newly formed trio featuring Jimi Hendrix on guitar, Buddy Miles on drums and Billy Cox on the bass. The Band Of Gypsys was the last official recording of Hendrix's career. Many have called The Band Of Gypsys CD the birthplace of funk. This isn't one of Hendrix's best-known albums but it still packs a musical punch.
This recording was released with a specific purpose in mind. Hendrix needed to fulfill a contractual obligation to a former manager of whom he had signed a recording contract with before he went off to London to begin his fabled career. The Jimi Hendrix Experience recordings sound polished and cleaned up compared to the raw, funky grooves of The Band Of Gypsys. Buddy Miles and Billy Cox combine their efforts to create phat, funky grooves perfect for Hendrix to play on top off and improvise through. Hendrix's playing doesnt carry these songs but tags along, slightly behind the beat to create some sexy, bouncy grooves. For fans of Hendrix, his playing on The Band Of Gypsys is a little different from his solo stuff, it provides interesting new sounds and textures to listen to. Buddy Miles provides some rather impressive vocals on this CD but the highlight is undoubtedly the song "Machine Gun". "Machine Gun" ranks along with "The Star Spangled Banner" as a innovative, inspiring and emotional electric guitar performance. "Machine Gun" is Hendrix's thought provoking statement of a nation at war, a war that the young generation of that time didn't support. "Machine Gun" is a soulful, solo guitar masterpiece created by a young Hendrix, it contains some terrifying, agonizing guitar sounds. One can close their eyes while listening to "Machine Gun" and picture a war-torn battlefield complete with the sounds of bombs and guns going off, along with the wounded cries of dying soldiers all around. All of the guitar sounds on The Band Of Gypsys were created by a primitive guitar/amp set-up by today's standards, but Hendrix most certainly had the loudest and most innovative equipment he could could get his hands on, along with a stock Fender Stratocaster.

The original vinyl release only had 6 songs, but there is a remastered double-disc CD set from the 4 shows, which contains all the best songs from the 4 shows and there is also a Band Of Gypsy DVD, which won a Grammy Award and is a must-see for any serious Jimi Hendrix/Band Of Gypsys fan.

Guitar World 1995 which covered the legal battle for Jimi Hendrix's music, which was won by Experience Hendrix, LLC, who represent Hendrix's family.

Guitar World Jimi Hendrix Tribute issue from 1985.

Jimi Hendrix "Atlanta Special" is a bootleg release I picked up awhile ago.

According to the book Jimi Hendrix: Experience The Music the first 3 songs are from the Berkeley, CA rehearshals from 5/30/70 and the rest of the songs are from The Atlanta Pop Festival 7/4/70.

Guitar World, 11/2000 Hendrix Tribute Issue.
Pete Townsend, Carlos Santana, Billy Cox, Eddie Kramer and Hendrixs' drummer Mitch Mitchell speak out about the life & times of Jimi Hendrix. Eddie Kramer & John McDermott discuss the making of the 1st Hendrix family produced 4-CD box set.

This CD came out in 2007, 40 years after Hendrixs' groundbreaking, performance at The Monterey Pop Festival in California. This is the show where Hendrix made his triumphant return to the U.S. after blowing away many an audience in the U.K. and after releasing his first album with the help of Chas Chandler of The Animals. I've always seen the front view of this famous shot in which Hendrix sacrificed his guitar for the audience, first burning it then smashing it in a feedback frenzy. I had never seen this photograph before this CD came out so after resisting for 3 yrs, I finally picked it up in 2010. This CD includes the intro by Brian Jones of Rolling Stones fame and the entire set that The Jimi Hendrix Experience performed during The Summer Of Love.

West Coast Seattle Boy, The Jimi Hendrix Anthology is the latest release from Experience Hendrix, LLC. This is a must have for any true Hendrix fan, not so much for the casual listener. The 1st CD contains rare recordings Hendrix played on for other artists' such as Little Richard and The Isley Brothers, think classic motown and funky R & B. The rest of the music is quite good, but some of the unreleased stuff is not so good, but interesting to listen to, as it provides some insight into the genius that was Jimi Hendrix. This is the 2nd Hendrix box set released by Experience Hendrix, LLC.

Here's a couple of classic pics when Jimi was in the army, Jimi found the time to play guitar while in the army as shown in the 2nd photo from '61.
Photos courtesy of the book "Becoming Jimi Hendrix" by Steven Roby & Brad Schreiber.

Above, Jimi playing with the King Kasuals from '62.
Below, Jimi playing as a sideman for Little Richard from '65.

Jimi Hendrix with "Others"

Jimi Hendrix Recorded and Performed with Many an Artist Before His Solo Career Exploded!

"I played with this little rhythm and blues group named Curtis Knight & The Squires. And I made a few records and arranged a few songs for him." Jimi Hendrix 1967. Jimi performed and recorded with many great artists' early in his career and later as his worldwide fame grew. Jimi was a session man for many of these recordings and his input was limited to guitar playing and not to singing. Many of the lead guitar parts and guitar solos were not Jimi's but the headliners. After Jimi attained worldwide fame many of these recordings were released as official recordings by Jimi Hendrix but indeed they were not.
Jimi's involvement with Lonnie Youngblood began in 1963, Jimi was hired to play guitar on some of Lonnie Youngblood's recordings. At that time, Youngblood was a well known saxophonist in Philadelphia and Jimi was glad to record with Lonnie. Jimi's unique style of playing soul, blues and rhythm and blues shines through on these recordings. Jimi recorded the songs "Goodbye, Bessie Mae", "Soulfood", "Let Me", "Go Go Shoes", "Sweet Thang", "Under The Table" and "Wipe The Sweat" with Lonnie Youngblood.

The Isley Brothers were in need of a guitarist in 1964 and as luck would have it, a friend of Ronnie Isley's named Tony Rice had seen Jimi perform at the Palm Cafe in New York City and recommended Jimi to Ronnie Isley which led to an audition. The Isley Brothers were impressed with Jimi's raw talent and Jimi was brought on to tour and record with the band in early 1964. Jimi recorded "Testify", "Move Over And Let Me Dance" & "Have You Ever Been Disappointed" with the Isley's. Jimi left The Isley Brothers in the summer of 1964 to seek new musical opportunities in Nashville. 3 of these songs can be found on the new Hendrix box set "West Coast Seattle Boy".

Jimi toured and recorded with Little Richard in 1965. Jimi only recorded a couple of songs with Little Richard. Jimi recorded "I Don't Know What You Got But It's Got Me" and "Dancing All Around The World" which was released as a single by Vee-Jay Records in November 1965. That single peaked on the Billboard charts at number 92. The single reached number 12 on the Billboard Rhythm & Blues chart. These songs can be found on "West Coast Seattle Boy" as well.

Jimi's association with the blonde bombshell Jayne Mansfield was brief but it resulted in a single which was released in July of 1967. The songs are "As The Clouds Drift By" & "Suey" and can be found on the Hendrix bottleg "Too Hot To Handle".

In October 1965 Jimi signed a 3-year recording contract with Ed Chalpin's record company PPX Recordings for a disgraceful 1% royalty rate which was a direct result of Jimi's naivete when it came to signing recording contracts. Chalpin was a shrewd business man and he saw a good opportunity to decieve Jimi and take advantage of his remarkable raw talent. This contract came back to haunt Jimi later in his career and the end result was a number of sub-standard studio and live recordings which resulted in a large amount of quasi-legal official releases and bootleg releases. Many of these recordings were altered, faked, edited and falsely identified as Jimi Hendrix recordings.

Later in his career Jimi played lead guitar with McGough & McGear on their single "So Much" & "Ex Art Student" which was produced by Paul McCartney. Jimi added percussion to the Fat Mattress song "How Can I Live?" on their August 1969 release. Jimi also played bass with Robert Wyatt on his song "Slow Walking Talk" from 1968 and on Timothy Leary's song "Live And Let Live" from April 1970. Jimi played guitar on 3 Eire Apparent songs "Rock 'N' Roll Band", "Yes I Need Someone" & "Let Me Stay" from March 1969. Jimi also played bass and guitar on the Lightnin' Rod recording "Doriella Du Fontaine" which was recorded in November 1969. Jimi plays some lead guitar on the self-titled Stephen Stills solo record, of Crosby, Stills & Nash fame, on the song "Old Times Good Times".

Visit http://www.jimihendrix.com/

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Michael Biddlecom - Strange Therapy CD review

Strange Therapy kicks off with "A Race Against The Sun". The sound of the track can be described as new wave hard rock. The feel of the intro is heavy and the verse music is keyboard driven. Mike's vocals sound like Geoff Tate on this track. The chorus music drives hard and the guitar solo is melodic, fitting in perfect within the melody of the song. Youtube music video link http://youtu.be/7gLp0SRM8tM

"A Miracle Of Life" shows off more of Mike's musical and vocal versatility and his guitar and bass playing talent. The track starts off with a very melodic musical figure played simultaneously by a keyboard and guitar. The music has an 80's sound and the chorus has a haunting quality that drew my listening ear in right away. After the second chorus the song takes a heavy twist with a powerful guitar riff which leads into a ripping, guitar solo. This is my fave song on Strange Therapy.
Youtube music video link http://youtu.be/rxhfy7vJ5QM

The third song, "Electro Plated Man", is a heavy rock song with a new wave, 80's sounding verse. Mike uses alot of different guitar sounds on this song and they all sound great. The chorus is heavy with some sweet, pinch harmonics. The guitar solo is Mike at his best, with blistering runs and double tracked harmonies that remind me of George Lynch. The guitar lead morphs into a cool, spooky, bass and keyboard dominated ending... Youtube music video link http://youtu.be/Qj9VW-y0CQM

"When Should I?" seems pensive in lyrical content and the guitar figure is fairly clean in sound. The vocals and guitar have alot of reverb and digital delay which creates the mood for the song. The keyboard fills add color into the fairly sparse, musical, landscape of the song. A hard driving, guitar riff kicks in which leads into another great, sharp, guitar solo.
Youtube music video link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YAi

"Big Sky Fallin" reminded me of Queensryche. This song is Mike at his hard rockin' best, the guitar rhythm is hard and heavy and the song kicks ass. This song is sure to please any 80's hard rock fan.

"Passages In Time" highlights Mikes keyboard playing and song orchestration skills. The intro sounds like it would fit right in on any horror movie soundtrack.

"With Friends Like You (I Don't Need No Enemies)" has an 80's musical sound. The lead guitar on the intro is melodic and strong. I just figured out who's Mike's voice sounds similar to. Mike's voice can be compared to the vocalist from the Sisters Of Mercy. (great band, look them up on youtube) Mike sings in a higher range on this particular track. After listening to most of "Strange Therapy" it seems to me that one of Mike's main musical influences was the Sisters Of Mercy. The guitar solo on this track is one of the best on the "Strange Therapy".

The beginning of "Disconnected" is rather sparse and mellow, alot of the musical spaces are filled with percussion and clean guitar fills. This groove continues on for the first 3 and half minutes of the song then the music abruptly stops. A powerful, guitar dominated, groove kicks the song into high gear. The mood of the first few seconds of the song is shattered by the powerful, guitar part that follows and takes out the song.

"In The Clouds" has an 80's new wave feel and sound.

"Emeralds" is an instrumental track. The intro has a new age feel and sound. Once the multi-tracked, guitar melody kicks in the song takes on a rock/new age kind of sound. The guitar sound is similar to Gary Moore and Thin Lizzy. Once the guitar part is over the song switches into a new age sound only to switch into to a heavier type of rock sound with blistering, quick, guitar leads taking precedence. This is the Mike B sound that I enjoy the most. Youtube music video link http://youtu.be/kO1XxZWKZYM

Strange Therapy is a very impressive effort as Mike wrote, performed and recorded all the music parts and wrote all the lyrics himself.

Michael Biddlecom, Buffalo Guitarist and Songwriter

Michael Biddlecom is a very talented, accomplished rock and roll guitar player and songwriter. I've witnessed Michael's unique and diverse talents firsthand and I recognize and appreciate Mike and his music. Mike is an excellent guitar player and he has demonstrated his abilities live and on recordings in and around Buffalo for many years.
My first contact with Mike was during my audition for the bass position to complete the original metal band called Bad Blood. This band was formed in the early 90's and the other members included Chris Barron (Ezekial) on vocals and Ric Proctor on drums, Ric was formerly with a band called Actor, which featured Buffalo favorite Jesse Galante on vocals. I was brought on as the new bassist. After learning Bad Blood's original material, we went on to change the name to Vicious Circle. Vicious Circle went on to record and release 8 original songs.

Mike's recent return to the Buffalo music scene was with a CD of his own instrumental music songs. Mystic Compass was released in 2010. Mystic Compass has Mike playing in a different style highlighting his diversity and talents on the electric guitar. Mystic Compass has elements of trance, acid jazz, jazz, techno and rock music. I was pleasantly surprised by this CD because I am used to hearing Mike play the guitar in a upfront, aggressive metal style. The music on Mystic Compass has an ethereal quality to it, spiritually soothing and great for daydreaming. If you want to relax and forget about your daily toils and troubles, playing the Mystic Compass CD will do it for you. Listen, Breathe and Relax. All of these songs are melodically driven by celestial sounding guitars, jazzy lead guitar solos ebb and flow seamlessly throughout these compositions. The title track Mystic Compass has a jazzy, bluesy feel to it, the melodic guitar lines feature some great bended notes. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/6jUAj7qc5fY. Sydonia contains some great bell-like tones throughout the song offsetting the guitar rhythm, a speedy guitar solo highlights Mike's skillful solo guitar playing. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/vwMIwyx7iNs. Track 3, After The Rain is an acid jazz, bluesy composition that features some great bended, melodic guitar lines along with some more somewhat speedy solo guitar playing. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/rjolyrAval8. On What Does It Take Mike demonstrates his jazz guitar playing skills. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/m8FbysytIE4. The final track Sapphire Blues has a great, somewhat dissonant sounding guitar rhythm track but Mike somehow still manages to make it sound pleasant and soothing. This song also features some great guitar slides, harmonics and some more awesome bluesy, jazzy lead guitar playing. Add some volume and distortion to all the solos on Mystic Compass and you've got yourself some great rock guitar solos. Here's the Youtube link to Sapphire Blues http://youtu.be/4nNaWNJEeaA.
I highly recommend Mystic Compass to any fan of instrumental guitar based music.
Mystic Compass is a tour de force of some excellent, well composed instrumental guitar-based music. Mystic Compass was mixed by Kyle Wierzba and produced at Audio Magic in Buffalo NY.

Mike has posted a few brand new compositions on YouTube. Mike posted the song Into The Nebula in 7/10, Into The Nebula continues in the trance, acid jazz, meditation musical vein. Into The Nebula features some very unique, cool, buzzing, distorted guitar sounds, along with some feedback driven lead guitar lines. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/haoR7BKP0o4. Lost As Love, which Mike posted in 9/10, has a very melancholy feel to it, this song highlights some cool volume knob swells and a piano track that mirrors the rhythm guitar. At exactly 3:36 Mike unleashes the metal guitar sounds that I've known him for all these years, Mike rips out an excellent, distorted guitar solo on this track, the song closes with the piano track and a bell-tone at the very end. Very Cool! Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/Ly0w3q95ewA.

Mike has most recently joined forces, once again, with Joe Cristofanilli of Ratt fame. Mike and Joe's debut song, The Enemy, was posted on YouTube in 12/10. The Enemy features a live action video of a blighted Buffalo landscape. This instrumental song is filled with some great musical sounds, the keys in the intro jump out of the mix, grabbing the listeners attention right away, a track that sounds like a helicopter keeps the listener interested and wondering what may come next. The Enemy starts out mellow but at 1:21 Mike lets loose with some metal chords and a killer, face melting solo. The songs continues on with a distorted, pulsing rhythm guitar and at 3:20 Joe lets loose on a sweet sounding electric bass solo. The songs closes with a jazzy wah-pedal driven guitar solo. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/sP_q11738j8. Mad Theater is Mike and Joe's most recent composition, this song has a distinct metal sound and feel, sounding like Judas Priest at times, the bass jumps out of the mix for a brief solo at 1:51. At about the halfway mark the song takes a twist as a bell-tone leads the listener into an acoustic guitar track. A thick, distorted guitar solo then takes over, after all that Mike once again shows his musical diversity taking a solo on the acoustic guitar which leads into another bass solo. Mad Theater closes out with the double tracked, melodic guitar line which was introduced earlier in the song. Here's the YouTube link http://youtu.be/Q-PpzkHnzzk.
Cinema photography was provided by Patsy Silver Cristofanilli. www.creationperformingworkshop.com Patsy and Joe Cristofanilli share the stage when they perform with their band, Silver Xtreme www.silverxtreme.com.

Great Job and Thank You Mike!

Amanda Nagurney - So Full Of Country

Amanda's newest CD "So Full Of Country".

Here's my review of Amanda's 1st CD "Gettin Out Of This Town".

Up and Coming Country Music Star Amanda Nagurney's 1st Release

I recently had the pleasure of witnessing Amanda Nagurney and Joe Childs perform live and in color at The Irishman Pub & Eatery, it was a fun night, highlighted by the fact that Amanda and Joe were gracious enough to let me sit in on a couple of songs, Thank You Amanda and Joe!
Being a big local music supporter I picked up this CD along with Amanda's newest release "So Full Of Country" at the Irishman.
This review will be of Amanda's debut CD "Gettin Out Of This Town" from 2008.
This CD establishes and confirms the fact that Amanda's music should be, if it isn't already, played on country music radio all across the U.S.A.

OK on with the review...

"Gettin Out Of This Town" sounds like and reminds me of a Garth Brooks song complete with country fiddle and rockin' guitar sounds. I must say I enjoy the country twang of Amanda's vocals and vocal harmonies. The lyrics of this song sound like a description of Amanda's busy career.

Track 2 "Never Break My Heart" is a mellow country ballad that features some really nice sounding pedal steel guitar behind Amanda's sweet vocals.

"Don't Ask Me To Love You" is a very catchy upbeat song. Amanda's voice and phrasing on this melancholy laced song remind me of Sarah Evans.

Track 4 "Just For A Moment" has a real good melancholy feel and sound. This track features an excellently orchestrated classical music backing track.

"Goodbye Doesn't Mean Forever" is another great country ballad that let's Amanda's soaring vocals shine through. This track also features some amazing pedal steel guitar work.

The closing track "Rock That Country" is a perfect example of a "new country" song that you might hear on WYRK FM. This track has an uplifting, spirited rock sound, topped off with a killer lead guitar solo, but the rock edge doesnt rock too hard, the guitar has the perfect amount of twang on it to keep it country.

Of course, above and beyond all the music, all the vocal performances on "Gettin Out Of This Town" sound great and are quite impressive and putting all comparisons aside, Amada's singing style has a unique quality all it's own.
On top of all that, Amanda writes and performs her own songs! A complete musical package. The session players on "Gettin Out Of This Town" are all A1 top notch players. This CD sounds like it could be and should be played on WYRK along with all the other "new country" musical talent currently on it's playlist.

Any fan of "new country" or old school country for that matter, should make a serious effort to check out Amanda's live performances where she has both of her CDs readily available for purchase.

Amanda's local performance schedule is a busy one, she currently performs with Joe Childs in an acoustic duo setting and Amanda also performs locally with her full band, Mason Dixon. On top of all her local appearances, Amanda also finds the time to travel out of state to promote her original music in various music venues across the U.S.A., most notably in Nashville and California.
Any recognition Amanda's recieves is well deserved because she is a hard working major musical talent who is seemingly destined for major recognition. Keep up the Good Work Amanda! Rock that Country Music All Night!

Test Tube Rhino "InVitro" CD Review

Joe Pinnavaia is a Guitarist, Composer and Instructor from the Western New York area whose musical style ranges from progressive rock with elements of orchestration and electronica to melodic instrumental rock.
Joe completed his musical education at Villa Maria College of Buffalo and at the University at Buffalo where he studied with Joanne Castellani from the world renowned Castellani/Andriaccio Duo and also studied locally with guitar virtuoso Tony Scozzaro. He has also performed with James Kurzdorfer (original bassist for Spyro Gyra) as well as Cosmic Stepping Stones and the duo BREAKERBOX who have worked with Corey Lowery of Dark New Day, as producer, releasing the single "Soul to Life". After being in mostly vocal orientated projects Joe decided to go into a new direction and focus more on his composition and released his first solo effort entitled "InVitro" under the name Test Tune Rhino. This experimental project has now turned into a fulfilling venture and the follow up release "Fragile X" is to be released early 2010. A track from this upcoming release titled "Night at the Carnival" will feature a guest performance by Art Kalenda of Soul Release - Joe's first guitar instructor that inspired him to become the guitar player that he is today.
Check Joe out online @ http://www.rhinoguitar.topcities.com/

Test Tube Rhino is the guitar oriented musical adventure of skilled local guitarist Joe Pinnavaia, Joe has played with many Buffalo based musical projects, but this is Joe going off and doing his own thing, creating his own "guitar world" if you will. Skillfully and masterfully using the guitar to create his own sonic instrumental masterpieces without the restrictions and conventional boundaries that a band-like song structure usually requires.
Track 1, "Test Tube Fantasy" sounds menacingingly melodic with its metallic guitar tones, cleany executed tight rhythms and fast soloing.
"E.B.E" features some sharp, classical Spanish guitar playing that flows nicely into a melodic guitar line, some sweet fluid electric guitar soloing compliments the acoustic guitar playing.
Track 3, "Caucacious" has some Joe Satriani-like melodic guitar melodies and some great upfront bass playing, I wish the ending with the distorted wah soloing and uptempo drums would have continued just a bit longer...
I enjoyed the melancholy feel of Track 4 "I'm Not Doing Anything To Feel Sorry".
The guitar sounds and soloing of "Nimicus Namicus" remind me of Vai/Satriani, I like the guitar tapped soloing and the stereorific solo panning at the end.
The minimalistic approach and overall mix of "High" is sonically refreshing being different from the rest of the tracks. I really enjoyed the soloing and the 2nd digitally delayed solo section.
"High" is my favorite track on "InVitro".
I like the melodic sustaining return line on "Vitamin Salt" and the tasty fast soloing reminded me of Vai/Satriani/Van Halen and Jeff Beck.
Joes playing has been compared to these modern guitar masters: Joe Satriani/Buckethead/Paul Gilbert/Robert Fripp and Terje Rypdal.
I highly recommend the "InVitro" CD to any fan of guitar driven instrumental music.
Visit http://www.rhinoguitar.topcities.com/, www.reverbnation/testtuberhino and www.myspace.com/testtuberhino to find out how you can pick up your very own copy of Test Tube Rhinos "InVitro" today.
"InVitro" is also available digitally on ITunes, Amazon Mp3, Rhapsody, eMusic, Napster and on every online store through the Favored Nations label.
Thank You Joe!

Fans of Joes talented guitar playing can visit these other band sites to hear his multi-faceted musical talents at play...
Cosmic Stepping Stones www.myspace.com/cosmicsteppingstones
Toxic Love www.myspace.com/therealtoxiclove
Breakerbox www.myspace.com/breakerbox

Commando The Autobiography Of Johnny Ramone, Tommy Ramone

Commando, The Autobiography Of Johnny Ramone
written by Johnny Ramone

Anybody who's a fan of Punk Rock and/or The Ramones needs to read this book.
...one of my fave pics from the book...with the 3 late and greatest members of The Ramones

Back cover of Commando.


Another interesting book which gives me a reason to read...

some recent press covering featuring the  mizerable moz...

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Sara Elizabeth - Buffalo, NY

Sara Elizabeth "On The Rise" CD cover art.

Before I start the review I want to Thank Sara for submitting her new CD for review. Thank You Very Much Sara!

Now for the CD review...
Sara's strong vocal talents, unique lyrical phrasing and song writing skills are immediately evident as soon as "I Think I Better" begins. The lyrics reflect a young and positive outlook on life. Sarah's strong vocal performance overshadows the rhythm section on this song.
The second track, "He Smells Of Summer", is one of my favorites on Sara's CD debut release. The tempo, feeling and sound are completely different from the first song, revealing Sara's diverse musical talents and strong songwriting abilities. Her musical talent defies her young age.
The percussive eggshaker track carries this song along with a fingerpicked acoustic guitar. The eggshaker is a very cool, unique touch and the banjo playing is great. The vocals begin with a breathy, mellow sound that match the lyrical content. The emphasis on "wind" is a unique touch. The vocals continue along into a almost pleading shout then go back down after a musical interlude. I hear a distorted guitar track carrying the musical break along in my head or maybe a punchy bass track.
True to form "Willow Tree" has a feeling and sound different from the first two songs. I like this song even more than "He Smells Of Summer". The ukulele intro is refreshing and easy on my over-driven ears. The bongo and tambourine performance is excellent, they accompany the vocals and mandolin perfectly. The upright bass track is great as well. The vocals have a breathy, seductive quality that is easy on the ears. Sara has a very listenable and melodic singing voice. Sara's natural singing talent really shines through on "Willow Tree". This is my favorite song on Sara's CD.
The fourth song, "Today I'm OK" is a happy and uplifting song. Once again the vocal performance is outstanding. Again I have to comment on the listenable quality of Sara's singing voice. Sara's positive lyrics and engaging voice grabs your listening attention and keeps your ear focused on the song and melody. This song had me envisioning a girl dancing in my head and then I found myself looking at the sky. The bass track is a little busy which takes away from the melody.
"For You" is a piano driven track, which demonstrates Sara's talent at playing and composing on many different types of instruments. Once again this track proves Sara's diverse talents defy her age. The guitar/piano intro is great. The guitar figure during the chorus takes the focus away from the piano melody a bit, the guitar figure would make a great solo during the song. Overall "For You" is a great, melodic track.
The 6th track, "Carry Me Away" is yet another type of musical soundscape. The rhythm section has a calypso feel during the verse. The feel of this song is bouncy and jumpy. The drums are solid and they sound great, best percussion performance on "On The Rise".
"Knock Knocking" is an excellent and fun song. The music sounds like a classic, nursery rhyme and it's playful, child-like lyric is interesting. The lyrics sound like Sara may be reliving a few childhood memories through this song. Skipping along to the rhythm is highly recommended!
"Optophobia" first caught my attention because of the interesting song title. I looked up the meaning of the song title on the interwebs almost immediately. Most of the songs contained on "On The Rise" are positive in sound and lyric, this song, however is not. That doesn't mean it's not as good as the other tracks or bad in any way. The stark contrast is why I like this song so much. This song is very cool and quirky with it's odd noises and dark, piano filled soundscape. The vocal performance on this song is great, the vocal effect at 3:17 is a very nice touch but it's barely noticeable. My super hearing caught the effect after a few very focused listens.
I must say that (sometimes) I wish the sun wasn't so....bright.
The title track, "On The Rise" is a uplifting, positive song is sound and feeling. A perfect song for a young singer/songwriter who is definitely on the rise. Music can take people places and Sara's musical talents will take her places if she continues to grow and cultivate her many great talents through original music CD releases like "On The Rise". The vocal harmonies and mandolin playing on this particular song are excellent.
"And That's All" is a great song. I don't know if this song was specifically created to close out Sara's "On The Rise" CD but it is a great choice. The lyrics are interesting and entertaining and the vocal performance is once again, great. The sound and feel of the song is vibrant and happy.

Sara's debut release "On The Rise" is a great start to a promising music career. The rhythm section tracks on "On The Rise" could be mixed a little more prominently at times but overall "On The Rise" is a great sounding debut from a highly talented, young artist.

Once again I'd like toThank Sara for submitting her CD for review.
CD credits are as follows: Sara Elizabeth, Lead Vocals, Acoustic/Electric Guitars, Banjo, Ukulele, Piano, Mandolin and Sound Programming. Anthony Rideout, Electric and Upright Bass. Joe Thomas, Drums, Eggshaker, Congas, Tambourine and Body Percussion and Chris Jacobs, Sound Programming and Effects.
All songs written, arranged and copyrighted by Sara Elizabeth Genco. Produced and engineered by Sara Elizabeth Genco and Chris Jacobs. Recorded at SUNY and Buffalo Slee Hall Recording Studio. CD Photography by David Genco. Album art by Sara Elizabeth Genco.
Goto www.saraelizabethmusic.com to find out more about Sara, her music and how you can pick up your very own copy of "On The Rise".