Miss Leslie, a.k.a. Leslie Sloan, and her band the Juke-Jointers play hardcore honky-tonk from the days of 45s on the jukebox and Hank Williams on the AM radio, but she's no throwback. After 2008's outstanding Between the Whiskey and the Wine, she thought about making the results of each recording session available online instead of saving the songs for another album.
She wound up scratching that idea, though, so Leslie & Her Juke-Jointers are back on local record-store shelves with Wrong Is What I Do Best, which glides around the dance floor to the humor of "Drunk Dialer" and the heartache of "There's Two People Here Not Talkin'."
Chatter: Do you mind sharing where the new album title came from with our readers?
Miss Leslie: Sure. John Conquest over at Third Coast Music had reviewed Between the Whiskey and the Wine, and basically he was saying in the review that it was a great album but the wrong kind of music for mainstream country. He referred to a book by Barbara Ching called Wrong's What I Do Best.
A friend of mine has a copy of this book and he keeps telling me he's going to let me borrow it, but essentially, it's a very studious, educated write-up of the evolution of country music. I heard the title of the book and I was like, "God, that's kind of the theme song for my life."
C: You've been through a lot of changes since Whiskey came out. How much of that is reflected on the new album?
ML: That's hard to say. I definitely feel like this album is like Between the Whiskey and the Wine in that it really is a snapshot of the previous year and a half of my life. These songs primarily are about being in a relationship. Between the Whiskey and the Wine to me was, "Okay, you get in this relationship and you completely lose yourself, and you find that you don't even have an identity anymore."
Wrong Is What I Do Best, to me, is the ongoing struggle of, "How can I be in a relationship and love someone and care for somebody, but at the same time not lose my identity, not give up of myself what I've given up before?"
C: Do you have a good drunk-dialing story, either from the dialing or answering end?
ML (laughs): This song is really about me and a friend of mine, and me and him had this whole history of drunk-dialing each other. Probably the funniest time was me and him and somebody else, and we were driving home from a bar. He was absolutely trashed; I think it was like 2:30 in the morning.
So he calls his cousin and he's like, "Hey man, what are you doing?" (laughs). He stops for a second, then he's like, "Hey man, what's going on? What are you doing next?" Then he's silent some more, and he's like, "Oh, okay." I'm like, "What's he doing, Joe?" Joe's like, "Well, I think he was asleep."
Those late-night calls and late-night texts...yes. We've all been there.
Houston urban station 97.9 The Box's April 21 dismissal of popular DJ trio the Kracker Nuttz, and the subsequent open letter to the station by former local hip-hop promoter Matt Sonzala published on his Austin Surreal blog, resulted in several highly commented and re-Tweeted posts on our Rocks Off blog last week. Tuesday, Box Program Director Terri Thomas told us company policy precluded her from making any official comment on the situation, which arose when the station allegedly banned all music by local rapper Trae tha Truth after he and morning-show personality Nnete got into an on-air altercation the day after several people were wounded by gunfire at last summer's Trae Day concert and fundraiser. Wednesday, DJ Klean Cutt of the Kracker Nuttz told Rocks Off's Shea Serrano that the trio was let go shortly after playing a remix of Chamillionaire's "Won't Let You Down," featuring a guest verse by Trae. The Kracker Nuttz had been reprimanded by station management for deviating from their scheduled playlist several times in the past, he added.
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1. MGMT, Congratulations
2. Goldfrapp, Head First
3. Bonny Billy & the Picket Line, Funtown Comedown
4. Modest Mouse, The Moon & Antarctica (LP reissue)
5. Liars, Sisterworld
6. Dead Meadow, Three Kings
7. Crispy Ambulance, Plateau Phase
8. Jimi Hendrix, Valleys of Neptune
9. Roky Erickson & Okkervil River, True Love Cast Out All Evil
10. Burzum, Belus
1. George Strait, "Gotta Get to You"
2. Lady Antebellum, "American Honey"
3. Kenny Chesney, "Ain't Back Yet"
4. Joe Nichols, "Gimme That Girl"
5. Lady Antebellum, "Need You Now"
6. Justin Moore, "Backwoods"
7. Steel Magnolia, "Keep on Loving You"
8. Clay Walker, "She Won't Be Lonely Long"
9. Miranda Lambert, "The House That Built Me"
10. Martina McBride, "Wrong Baby Wrong Baby Wrong"
(lists compiled by Chris Gray)
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