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Steve Martin to give Portland the Bird

Steep and deep
Things that are important to understand going into Steve Martin's bluegrass performance, backed by the Steep Canyon Rangers, at Merrill Auditorium: 1) The music is dead serious. 2) So is the comedy.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  May 12, 2011

The Toughcats at One Longfellow Square, February 3

Music seen
When considering the bands comprising the Portland music scene, in all of its glory, it's easy to forget the Toughcats, because they don't play locally very often.
By AMANDA PLEAU  |  February 09, 2011

Live review: Matt Meyer and the Gumption Junction at Blue, November 11

Music seen
On my way to see Matt Meyer and the Gumption Junction play at Blue, I made sure to get there on time.
By AMANDA PLEAU  |  November 17, 2010

The next great young singer you need to know: Amy Allen

Chasing Amy
Just after graduating from Waynflete and off to college this fall, Amy Allen joins an impressive cadre of young female singers (Clara Berry, Amanda Gervasi, Aly Spaltro, Marie Moreshead) doing great things locally.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  September 29, 2010

Remember when

Getting back to roots for the Fourth
A celebration of our nation's founding is as good a time as any to dig into some old-time country music, either from this country or another. Whether a reissue from 1976 (the Bicentennial!) or a release from just last week, Mainers give you plenty of backyard fodder for the long weekend.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  June 29, 2010

Summer treats

Whether classical, jazz, pop, or folk, 'tis the season to get out and enjoy the music
From Andean to zydeco, pick your flavor and there's a summer music festival ready to serve it up.
By CLEA SIMON  |  June 18, 2010

Mousam River Ramblers

Music Seen
At Atlantic Hall, Kennebunkport, May 19
By BRIDGET M. BURNS  |  June 02, 2010

Mandolin Fest

Music Seen
At SPACE Gallery, March 27
By BRIDGET M. BURNS  |  March 31, 2010

In good Company

Dark Hollow Bottling debut a new old-time sound
Dark Hollow Bottling Company take a piece of their name from an old-school folk/bluegrass tune, "Dark Hollow," possibly made most famous by the Grateful Dead and Jerry Garcia's Old and in the Way , but also recorded as early as 1926, with popular versions from Bill Browning, Jimmy Skinner, and Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys, with Del McCoury singing.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  February 24, 2010

Review: Carolina Chocolate Drops at Somerville Theatre

Carolina Chocolate Drops, live at the Somerville Theatre, January 23, 2010
The Carolina Chocolate Drops introduced the penultimate song of their Saturday night Somerville Theatre show as from 2001, "which is about 100 years ago in pop music."
By JON GARELICK  |  January 29, 2010

The Stowaways

Music Seen
Empire Dine and Dance, January 4
By BRIDGET M. BURNS  |  January 06, 2010

Tomorrow never dies

 A new full-length from Dave Rowe (and Trio)
For a Halloween party with substantially less gore, check out the newest release from Dave Rowe (and sometimes his Trio), The Music Never Dies .
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 28, 2009

Doing what comes naturally

Tallahassee make timeless old town music on Wolfe Moon
Tallahassee make timeless old town music on Wolfe Moon
By CHRIS CONTI  |  September 22, 2009

Music Seen: The Record Family

At the Silver Spur (Mechanic Falls), September 12
When the economy suddenly found us working Saturdays, Saturday night out became all the more important. Enter the Silver Spur in Mechanic Falls.
By BRIDGET M. BURNS  |  September 16, 2009

More than guitar

Julian Lage's talent isn't just in his fingers
"I like using songs to change the environment — to get the listener's ear to be a little skewed."
By JON GARELICK  |  September 08, 2009

Trail of tunes

Music al fresco at summer fests
The best summer music festivals take something from the season: the smell of the surf, the sight of the mountains, fireworks, lawn seating — or, at least, fried dough.
By CLEA SIMON  |  June 09, 2009
hamilton list

Up in the County

Hamilton's Brokedown Breakdown
Is it bluegrass if it doesn't have a banjo? Or a fiddle, for that matter? Hamilton County, a three-piece acoustic outfit who debut their first CD, Brokedown Breakdown , next week, sure do a good impersonation of a bluegrass band, even if purists might dismiss it on technicalities.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  June 03, 2009
putnam list

Before the Goldrush

Putnam Smith can't quite find his way home
With a name right out of a Nathaniel Hawthorne novel and hand-pressed CD packaging graced with images of antique farming tools, Putnam Smith does nothing to dispel the notion that he wouldn't mind living in 1809 instead of 2009.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  May 27, 2009
brad list

No man is an island

Two rootsy discs, 20 rootsy players
Anybody who needs to be reminded of the musical talent that swirls around and intermingles throughout our fair city probably doesn't listen to a ton of local music.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  May 06, 2009

King Wilkie | King Wilkie Presents: The Wilkie Family Singers

Dead Oceans (2009)
Today, "risk" is less popular than George W. Bush, but this former Virginia band — now in NYC — are rolling the dice hard.
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  April 28, 2009

Home, at last

Jerks of Grass deliver a disc 10 years in the making.
Other than two tracks on the Greetings from Area Code 207 series, there has been nothing to bring home and put on the stereo for fans of what has been at times Portland’s hardest-working band.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  July 23, 2008

Hybrid rhythmic engine

Nation Beat is a gas
Fusions are the lifeblood of music, but too often they come with a whiff of high-concept gimmickry.
By JON GARELICK  |  July 15, 2008

Gabba gabba hayride

Tommy Ramone’s roots show in Uncle Monk
Punks in the know will tell you that the club where the music started, CBGB, is an acronym for “country, bluegrass, and blues.”
By STEVEN BEEBER  |  July 08, 2008

Drinking and driving

The Molenes release Songs of Sin and Redemption
Dave Hunter and his Molenes show they’re more than just a guitar band.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  June 04, 2008

Indie gets the blues

The Gossip, the Black Keys, and the Kills
White rockers generally come by the blues one of two ways.
By MATT ASHARE  |  April 23, 2008

Chatham County Line

IV | Yep Rock
Over four albums, this quartet from Raleigh, North Carolina, have retraced the evolution of bluegrass.
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  April 02, 2008

Northeast newgrass

The rootsy routes of Hot Day at the Zoo
Lowell is known for Kerouac, its historic canal system, and the Industrial Revolution, not the “high and lonesome” sound of bluegrass.
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  January 22, 2008

A philosopher in bunny ears

Steve Martin’s new memoir unlocks the freaky logic of his comedy
Martin’s new memoir, Born Standing Up , grants us our best access yet to this remote and brilliant figure — the cool architect of the comedy.
By JAMES PARKER  |  December 31, 2007

Schools of rock

There’s a whole lot of moving, shaking, and band-building going on in the world of local music instruction
“You walk in here, and you feel as though you’re visiting your favorite aunt or uncle’s house ... it’s a place where you want to visit and you’re willing to take risks.”
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 28, 2007

How I became a Grasshole

Or how my music teacher tricked me into having fun
If it wasn’t for Buckdancer’s Choice, I wouldn’t be a Grasshole, and I’d be a hell of a lot poorer for it.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 28, 2007

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