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October 2011

September 2011

Pittsburgh Roots

I paid a visit to my friend Tom in Pittsbugh this weekend, primarily to watch a little football game on Saturday. But Tom, being the well-connected musician that he is, brought me to the bi-level Brillobox in Bloomfield to catch a pair of local bands on Friday night. The Harlan Twins played rootsy rock like a latter-day version of The Band while The Slow Reel's Rob Collier doubled on bass and vocals. The upstairs room was packed wall-to-wall, the floor occasionally giving way underneath. All part of the fun. 

More pics on the photo page.

Brooklyn Honkytonk

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Union Hall was turned into something of a roadhouse last night, courtesy of two of the leaders of the Brooklyn country music revival. Sean Kershaw and the New Jack Ramblers warmed things up with a set of heartfelt songs, delivered with a Willie Nelson twang. And, headlining was Alex Battles and the Whisky Rebellion, whose booze-fueled charisma seemed to teeter on the brink of collapse. This, of course, is all part of Alex's charm, along with his amazing, often hilarious songs that transport the ballads of Texas and Tennessee to the urban range of NYC. (This rendition of "You Live in Queens" should ring true for anyone who's ever chased a girl/guy to the outerboroughs.)

For those who missed last night's show (guess there are a lot of folks who prefer made-for-TV music), Alex will be hosting the upcoming Brooklyn Country Music Festival at Hank's Saloon (9/30-10/2). Alex and the Rebellion play Sunday afternoon during the 37th annual Atlantic Antic: be sure to stop by, as this may be the last hurrah for Hank's, which is set to be razed any day now.

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More pics on the photo page.