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  • Article

    Broadcast Power - What can a little radio play do? It can make you a star. Just ask Vallejo.

    Radio is repetition. And since repetition breeds familiarity, and familiarity puts asses in seats, radio is also everything to an up-and-coming band. This is one of the few constants of the music business, and Vallejo, an Austin-based Latin-rock outf...

    by Andy Langer on April 17, 1997
  • Article

    Jazz Royalty - George's last name may be Duke, but on the keyboards, he's a king

    It's 8:30 a.m., an hour when most musicians are on their second or third dream, but jazz keyboardist George Duke is wide awake and ready to talk. What kind of musician would be up at this ungodly hour? "I guess people who wanna sell a record," Duke l...

    by Mark Towns on April 17, 1997
  • Article

    Ready to Ride - Alice's Tin Pony breaks from the gate with Hate Book

    The Fabulous Satellite Lounge can be a decidedly unfabulous forum for any opening act, let alone a local upstart with an embryonic fan base. The Washington Avenue club's cavernous interior has a way of making a decent-sized crowd look minuscule, whic...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 10, 1997
  • Article

    Keen Life

    Anyone who's been to a Robert Earl Keen show might have heard him tell the story of his 1974 Fourth of July. Exhausted from the heat and the tequila, Keen took a little afternoon nap while at Willie Nelson's annual picnic. He awoke to pillars of smok...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 10, 1997
  • Article

    Static

    Murphy's law... "Pinch the babies, make 'em cry and holler," barks Trish Murphy on "Concession Stand," a saucy number on her long-awaited debut CD, Crooked Mile. The tone is uncharacteristically brazen, but soak it up while you can, because it's the ...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 10, 1997
  • Article

    Rotation

    Ben Folds Five Whatever and Ever Amen Sony/550 If there's a reason Morphine and the Presidents of the United States of America sound so tiresome on their latest efforts, it's that clever instrumentation has a short shelf life. For the recor...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on April 10, 1997
  • Article

    Jungle Beat - Hip-hop's great lost act is ready to give it another try

    Ask hip-hop fans about the Jungle Brothers, and they'll likely refer you to the better known groups De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest. For folks old enough to remember rap's pre-gangsta days, the Jungle Brothers were the other act in the Native Ton...

    by Roni Sarig on April 10, 1997
  • Article

    Static

    From the vaults... I discovered the Velvet Underground in a way that should make the band's most impassioned devotees cringe. I'd been told by a hip elder cousin that, in light of my immersion in David Bowie and Mott the Hoople, it was only prudent t...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 3, 1997
  • Article

    Still Flying - Roger McGuinn is happy to look at the past, but he's not ready to live in it

    Roger McGuinn prefers to travel light; two guitars are all he carries, and a 12-string Rickenbacker is always one of them. At an age when many graying rockers are thinking about calling it a career, McGuinn, 54, is busy indulging the same wayfaring f...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 3, 1997
  • Article

    Funk Historians

    Fans of hard-core, Clinton-era (George Clinton, that is) funk should find something -- if not everything -- about Shag eerily familiar. The multiracial octet is nothing if not a sweaty-assed '90s encapsulation of Clinton's P-Funk experience circa 197...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 3, 1997
  • Article

    Rotation

    Matthew Sweet Blue Sky on Mars Zoo/Volcano The disappointment of Blue Sky on Mars cuts two ways. First, there are the songs: Aside from a few hummable gems that transcend time and cliche ("Back Two You," "All Over My Head," "Make Believe"),...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on April 3, 1997
  • Article

    Educated Sounds

    If you ever wanted proof of the benefits of education, Horace-Alexander Young is it. Over the last decade, the Houston native and admired jazz flute virtuoso has found himself recording, touring the world and serving as musical director for the likes...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 27, 1997
  • Article

    Looking for Billy Zoom - X was the West's great punk hope. But now they're finding more fun in their new worlds.

    No one will ever make a movie about D.J. Bonebrake. Not while punk culture is overcrowded with easily glorified martyrs such as the Germs' Darby Crash, that badass party boy and even worse Iggy imitator whose life and fabulous suicide will soon be en...

    by Steve Appleford on March 27, 1997
  • Article

    Sound Check

    Over the past year, a new generation of soul crooners -- D'Angelo, Maxwell and Tony Rich -- has revivified R&B vocals by dumping the new-jack croak that Boyz II Men still use to line their pockets with gold. These fellows are slipping into the darker...

    by Elvis Mitchell on March 27, 1997
  • Article

    Static

    Minor cause for an update... There's a simple reason why the furor over efforts by state Senator Judith Zaffirini (D-Laredo) to prevent underage music fans from gaining access to nightclubs that serve alcohol fizzled so quickly: People finally got th...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 27, 1997
  • Article

    Revenge of the Nerds - A Nerf Herder lesson in how to sell yourself as who you are

    Brand the guys in Nerf Herder misfits, and they won't argue with you about it -- they know as much. It's no coincidence, after all, that both halves of the California band's name share more than a few letters with "nerd." Head Herder Parry Gripp reli...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 20, 1997
  • Article

    Static

    Excerpts from a SXSW diary... Wednesday, March 12, 3 p.m.: The carnage hasn't yet begun, but already the staff at Austin's La Quinta Capitol looks like they've been through hell. One weary employee, dripping with sweat, joins me in the elevator as I ...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 20, 1997
  • Article

    All the Wilder

    Think of Webb Wilder, the self-styled "last of the full-grown men," as a road-show Warren Zevon. Like Zevon, Wilder uses a mix of sledgehammer rock and witty, twisted lyrics that's a rocket ship to a strange (and fun) planet. Drawing from a far-rangi...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 20, 1997
  • Article

    Punk and Precious - Rasputina offers up a trio of not so mellow cellos

    Stringed instruments have a long, if not always honorable, tradition in pop music. Sweeping violin washes have been used to sweeten everybody from Ella Fitzgerald to Hank Williams for audiences that, presumably, preferred to swallow their personaliti...

    by Brad Tyer on March 20, 1997
  • Article

    Rotation

    Buick MacKane The Pawn Shop Years Ryko Anyone who's seen Alejandro Escovedo play live knows what the (tiny) audience for his recent records may have missed, which is that alongside the eclectic and literate sensitivity that has been Escoved...

    by Mark Towns on March 20, 1997
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