1_Blake Mills_Newport Folk Festival 2015

Blake Mills has become one of the more respected guitarists/songwriters on the indie rock scene, and for good reason. The man is doing some great things, which was perfectly on display on his somewhat underappreciated 2014 album Heigh Ho, which was released via Verve Records.

I last saw Mills last October at LPR, one of the more impressive guitar rock displays I’d see all year. I caught a bit of his performance and was immediately reminded of his talent not only as a guitarist but as a songwriter, with a natural talent perfect for a showing like Newport Folk Festival.

Find some more photos from his performance posted below.

Continue Reading >>

1_First Aid Kit_Newport Folk Festival 2015

First Aid Kit, the Swedish folk duo (and sisters) of Klara and Johanna Söderberg, are as appropriate as any for a set at Newport Folk Festival. Unfortunately, Johanna was unable to contribute her vocals due to voice problems, leaving Klara to carry the full vocal load.

Although disappointing not to get the full Söderberg sister effect, First Aid Kit powered through the set and still delivered a beautiful performance.

Find some more photos from their performance posted below.

Continue Reading >>

1_The Felice Brothers_Newport Folk Festival 2015

Upstate New York Folk outfit The Felice Brothers are no strangers to Newport Folk Festival, making several appearances at the Rhode Island festival over the years. They returned this year, tapping into the heart of the festival with a memorable set of the stomping American-themed folk tunes that they’ve built their following on.

The performance came on the heels of their album Favorite Waitress, which was released last year via Dualtone Records. Unfortunately I was only able to stick around for a bit of the performance, but their memorable presence as performers left a notable impression. It’s about time I caught a full set of theres already. Next time, they’re in the area, I’m there.

Continue Reading >>

1_Field Report_Newport Folk Festival 2015

I caught the tail end of the Milwaukee, Wisconsin folk-rockers (led by Christopher Porterfield) Field Report’s set at Music Hall of Williamsburg much earlier this year, when they opened up for Phox.

I was able to catch them again at Newport Folk Festival, but tight conflicts in the busy schedule allowed me only to catch a handful of their set. But from what I heard, the group sounded solid, and got a well deserved warm reception from the crowd, sharing selections from their 2014 album Marigolden, which was released via Partisan Records

Continue Reading >>

1_Lord Huron_Newport Folk Festival 2015

After a few missed chances, I finally caught Los Angeles indie folk-rockers Lord Huron live at Newport Folk Festival. They stopped in as a part of their tour for their new album Strange Trails, released this April via Iamsound Records.

The group have a knack for creating rousing songs of the folk fare but with plenty of ambition left out for the taking. Theirs a power and scope to their tunes that just carry out to max effect when they play live. Quite frankly, they’re the sort of live band that’s tailor-made for large festival crowds, although it would be great to see them grace more intimate stages as well.

Find some photos from their Newport performance posted below.

Continue Reading >>

1_Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats_Newport Folk Festival 2015

Nathaniel Rateliff is one of those names I recognize around the live music scene, but never investigated further. I admit this to you shamefully, as I discovered that the man has bucket loads of talent.

I caught him along with his group The Night Sweats, at Newport Folk Festival where they demonstrated tremendous amount of life and energy full of passion and soul. Fans seated in the tent rose from their seats to clap and stomp along with the soulful tunes that they hammered with ease.

I was only able to stick around for the first third of their set, but hope to catch them again someday in New York soon enough.
Read the rest of this entry »

1_Brian Fallon_Newport Folk Festival 2015

The Gaslight Anthem’s frontman Brian Fallon kicked off the third and final day of Newport Folk Festival for me, with a solo-led set backed by Catherine Popper (of Ryan Adams and The Cardinals) as well fellow members of The Gaslight Anthem, Alex Rosamilia and Ian Perkins.

Fallon is preparing the release of his debut solo offering (which he apparently just completed) and shared a few of those songs, as well as selections from Fallon’s other side projects, The Horrible Crowes and Molly and The Zombies.

After seeing The Gaslight Anthem so many times, it was a nice change of pace to see this acoustic, stripped down side of Fallon. Sure, there were always elements of this at work in their music, but getting to hear an entire set of this at the fitting Newport Folk Festival was a breath of fresh air.

I’m excited to see what Fallon does with his solo record, which could be one of the finer solo offerings we get next year.

Find the setlist posted below, along with some more photos from the show.

Continue Reading >>

1_The Decemberists_Newport Folk Festival 2015

For a while now Portland folk-rock heroes The Decemberists are signed to Capitol Records and are booked for headlining slots at fests such as Newport Folk Festival. Yet, their earlier days releasing albums full of smaller-scale folk-rock treasures remain to be the image that comes to mind for me. Hence, my pleasure at catching an intimate performance from frontman Colin Meloy a few hours before The Decemberists’ set, giving the goods in a personal, stripped down form.

With that craving satisfied, this made me more welcome to the more expanded sound of their more recent material. Their set mostly contained songs from this years What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World as well as favorites from throughout their ever-expanding career. As far as big folk-rock groups go today, you’re hard pressed to find more engrained in our popular culture than The Decemberists, and I’m totally ok with that.

Find some more shots from their Newport performance posted below.

Continue Reading >>

1_Sufjan Stevens_Newport Folk Festival 2015

Before taking the stage at Newport Folk Festival, Sufjan Stevens noted that he was following James Taylor, no easy task. But Stevens is more than capable of holding his own alongside a folk legend such as Taylor, as he is well on his way as one of the best songwriters of this generation, by a mile.

Earlier in the year I caught Stevens at both The Beacon Theatre and The Kings Theatre, equally impressive performances that are both two of the finest shows I’ve caught all year. A festival is always a different element for an artist like Stevens, but of course he found a way to make it his own.

Being a folk festival, Stevens found time to work in some old favorites during his early folk-friendly days, such as “In The Devil’s Territory” and “The Dress Looks Nice On You.” Of course, these fit in alongside the exceptional cuts from his stellar Carrie & Lowell as well as beefed up versions of Illinois highlights such as “Come On! Feel The Illinoise!” and “Chicago,” which was played as different as I’ve ever heard it.

That’s the thing about Stevens, you never quite know what he will throw at you, but you’re always at ease knowing it’s going to be gold. This performance was no different.

Find some more photos from his Newport performance posted below.

Continue Reading >>

1_James Taylor_Newport folk Festival 2015

On July 20, 1979, folk mainstay James Taylor was playing a surely unforgettable set at the Newport Folk Festival. Only, he was interrupted by something slightly important, the news of the US moon landing. The festival ended up watching the landing live like the rest of America, and he never did get to finish his set.

Taylor never did forget about the set, and neither did Newport, as they invited Taylor back this year to perform a (mostly) secret performance, literally resuming where Taylor left off with his setlist 36 years ago. It was a special moment for Taylor and the audience alike, as well all got to witness history that was tied into history, in more ways that one.

His brief 5-song performance had the entire crowd left in awe, as if we were transported back to 1979, at least in spirit. Who knows if I’ll get another chance to see, or shoot, the legendary Taylor ever again, so I certainly didn’t take this special moment for granted, not even for a second.

Find some photos from his set posted below.

Continue Reading >>

Create your timeline cover maker online easy and fun!

blog advertising is good for you

Monday Morning Matinee

midwest sunglasses

Find the Musical Instruments at TradeTang.com