Songwriters Showcase December 1st

The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) has a newly formed MS Gulf Coast chapter. Never heard of NSAI? According to their mission statement they consist of “…a body of creative minds, including songwriters from all genres of music, professional and amateur, who are committed to protecting the rights and future of the profession of songwriting…”

As the only active chapter in the state they will be holding a Songwriters Showcase on December 1st at Coffee Fusion in D’Iberville at 7pm.

WeatherStar EP Download

WeatherStar is giving away their new EP (produced by Greg Dunn of Moving Mountains) on purevolume.

Songwriters Festival Rocks Florida-Alabama Coast

DSC_0278For 25 years the Frank Brown International Songwriters Festival has been rocking the Florida/Alabama coast, and this year is no exception. Running for two weekends, the festival started Thursday night and will run till Sunday the 22nd.
The festival offers workshops, performances from a wide array of known artist and open mic opportunities for budding songwriters. Multiple venues are listed with a schedule of acts on the festival’s website. A few of the venues, including the festival’s birthplace, the Flora-Bama, Janna’s Market & Deli, Pirate’s Cove, and the Silver Moon, Then, of course, there are venues, not a part of the festival, that compete by bringing in acts such as Grayson Capps.

Saturday evening at the Silver Moon and Janna’s Market & Deli began with musicians jockeying for their chance to perform during the time allotted for open mic. If sitting at the bar in the Silver Moon, one would have witnessed the many artists rushing to write their name on the list assuring their chance to perform 3 songs for the gathered audience. At either venue you would have to suffer through quite a few, to put it politely, less-than-stellar acts, and some that were just plain boring. But, if you sat there long enough, and endured the awful onslaught of old men whining out “woe is me, nobody loves me,” then you would have the pleasure of hearing noteworthy performers such as: Riley Yielding, Sassafrass, Daniela Demaria, and Mark Green.

Yielding shined, with solid vocals and guitar work, but really earned his applause with catchy, fun lyrics like: “so fine but she was someone else’s wife” and “the sweetest thing she does is call me her man.” He then wows with a blues number that sounded almost like a dead on rendition of the classic St. James Infirmary, off by a note or two, that pairs the classic tune with worthy lyrics.
Unique among the typical open mic performers was Sassafras. The environmental folk duo grabbed the audience’s attention with a message of protest, prodding the audience to become more Earth-friendly, with interactive songs like Wolves, guitar runs that become ingrained in ones head via such tunes as Rainforest and the more light-hearted, yet still somehow ominous Water Wars.
Young but filled with potential, Daniela Demaria entered the stage a bit nervously, but when she opened her mouth the crowd knew she was worth staying for.

Owning a voice with the timbre of an unpolished Regina Spektor, Daniela and her guitar reduced our hardened minds to a fluid state of sublime relaxation with a song she wrote about New Orleans street musicians, Wrapped Up in Blue, and one called It’s Not Fair. She may have low ambitions, to become a New Orleans street musician, but her voice may have other plans.
If blues and folk music aren’t your preferred genres maybe Mark Green’s definite country flair is more up your ally. Mark Green opened the open mic session at Janna’s Market & Deli. He may have appeared somewhat unrefined, but once his set started. if you closed your eyes, one would think they were listening to a member of the Nashville elite, someone who had already arrived.

All of the above were a true pleasure to anyone’s ears, but no one can put you in a trance like Grayson Capps. Ending the night at The Reef was definitely worth the second-hand smoke. Grayson puts on a live show like no other. The bar was packed to capacity with some of his biggest fans, there to revel in the experience. Despite being quite popular in Ireland it is no shock he’s southern made. Grayson’s recorded music doesn’t do his live show justice. Though his recordings are consistently good, there is just no way they can capture the raw energy of his live show. You just have to be there.

“GET OUT OF YOUR GARAGE” MUSIC CONTEST

Converse, Journey, Guitar Center and OurStage.com have teamed up to offer a great opportunity for bands on the rise. The Get Out of Your Garage Contest offers several prizes and tons of free band exposure to anyone who participates. Last year’s winner, Flying Machines (who you can see in our mixed notes section of this month’s issue), is now signed to EMI and is constantly on tour. This is a great FREE opp, so submit your band before the Nov. 22 deadline. For more information simply visit Ourstage.com/go/getoutofthegarage.

Steven Tyler may leave Aerosmith

Steven Tyler Aerosmith
Steven Tyler Aerosmith

Fox News is reporting that Steven Tyler might leave Aerosmith in an effort to pursue a solo career. The band’s 40th anniversary is less than a year away. They are already discussing replacing Tyler or taking an extra long hiatus.

It seems like a modern day divorce, 40 years and it’s time for a new road. Hopefully the solo career will go well but why mess up sometime great?

There For Tomorrow Shines Despite Evening of Bedlam

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by: C. D. Harvill

Tuesday night, as it does on just about any given night, High Ground in Metairie, Louisiana, hosted an “all-ages” rock show. The evening’s lineup was comprised of headliners Hit The Lights, joined on the tour by the pop groups I Rival, Sparks the Rescue, Fireworks, and There For Tomorrow.

All of the bands were decent musicians and tight, as a whole. However, some aspects of certain bands’ stage shows should be noted. It needs to be understood that the High Ground is an ALL AGES venue.

Sparks the Rescue obviously misunderstood the nature of their audience, to stand on a stage and feel the need to announce what each song is about with descriptions such as: “This next song is called Skeletons. It’s about bone-rs….” Then, when there is a blatant awkward vibe in the room, the front man feels the need to explain himself to a room full of 14-year-old girls and a few mothers, “the song is about bones….. boners.” One would naturally think that, after his first attempt at humor wasn’t appreciated, he would back off, but, to the audiences misfortune, he did not. He went on to explain another song as being about oral pleasure and, if anyone would like to see the group of guys giving each other oral pleasure, they could find them in the van. He went on to open another song by saying it was about having too much of “the devil’s lettuce” and announcing that, if anyone knew where they could get some “devil’s lettuce” to come find them after the show. As if the band’s stage manners weren’t appalling enough, it is to be said that, as a pop band, you are expected–at least to some degree–to be heartthrobs. Showing up for a gig with greasy hair and having forced your, by most standards, chunky body into a pair of skinny jeans doesn’t usually scream heartthrob.

Although the next band, Fireworks, would neither be classified as heartthrobs, by most girls’ standards, nor as flawless musicians, they were at least a wholesome-looking group of guys who put on a show that had even your most unlikely audience members, with their hands in the air, singing along. Near the end of their set, the band suddenly stopped playing for one of the guitarists to ask everyone to chill out (a fight had broken out in the audience). Upon being cursed at by one kid involved in the fight, the guitarist shouted “my bad I thought he had something of value to say” and the band once again started playing. The kid continued to provoke the band, looking for things to throw, according to guitarist Chris Mojan. Once they had finished their gig, multiple fights broke out. The the drummer asked the kid if he wanted to go and just talk but, according to Mojan the kid started trying to fight again. The High Ground’s security and one of the sound guys had to help break up the evening’s violence. Mojan stated how embarrassing it was for them to be the band up there when everything broke out “we don’t support violence in any way; our music doesn’t provoke violence, it’s not even aggressive”.

Once the audience had settled down from the fights, the band that shined above all took the stage. There For Tomorrow holds the complete formula for a pop band. Each member is attractive, appropriate, charming and, not to be forgotten, the music is up to par.

The quartet has been together since 2003. Upon graduating high school they decided to start touring. They have won multiple upcoming artist awards, played Van’s Warped Tour this past summer and, upon finishing up this tour in their native Orlando, will be heading out again with Mayday Parade. Despite all the positive attention, they are still looking for more. Even though Maika Maile says he doesn’t want them to come across as needy and wanting to be in the limelight, as can be expected, the young musicians want success and deserve it. Their songs are well written, with catchy lines, not so typical minor harmonic lead riffs and flattering rhythm partnered with tight backing-bass and drums.

If you’re looking for the next band to follow until they hit it big, it would be recommended you jump onboard with There For Tomorrow as fast as you can.