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Inside Appalachia

Mountain Blog

News and Notes

Pat McGee, much more, THIS SUNDAY!

 Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 30, 2009
Newly solo, Pat McGee

You can still get tickets to this Sunday's live recording in Charleston. You can buy ONLINE, call 800-594-TIXX to charge by phone, swing by Taylor Books if you're in downtown Charleston or show up at the Cultural Center Theater (State Capitol Complex - Greenbrier & Washington Streets Exit 99 off I-77/64) at 5pm Sunday when we open the box office. 

Check out our NEWSLETTER (PDF file, Adobe Reader required) which features a bit of info on each of our guests plus links to their respective Web sites. Thanks to Shawn Patterson at WV Public Broadcasting for putting it together.

Singer, songwriter, entertainer and father of three, Pat McGee took time to talk to Bill Lynch at the Charleston Gazette. Read what he's up to by clicking HERE. Looks like he might do some solo stuff and a few numbers with the Mountain Stage Band.

Colin Linden
Canadian blues man and renowned guitarist and producer Colin Linden is returning to the Mountain Stage May 3. He first performed in the band of fellow Northerner Bruce Cockburn. Linden has produced something like 70 records and appeared on over 300. He has collaborated with Alison Krauss & Robert Plant and is a member of Canadian rock super group Blackie & the Rodeo Kings (who just put out a greatest hits record). His latest CD is called From the Water . For more on the rest of our guests you can read the newsletter or our press release. This show promises to be eclectic and down-right good.
Brian Blauser
Memphis' Amy LaVere
Singer, songwriter and upright bassist Amy LaVere can be heard today over at NPR Music. She's got a deceptively innocent voice-especially when she gives you a line like "Killing him didn't make the love go away." You just gotta hear this set.
Brian Blauser
Steve Selvidge

This wasn't the first time on Mountain Stage for Amy's guitarist Steve Selvidge, who had performed along side his father, fellow Archer Records recording artist Sid Selvidge in July 1993.

More great music to come, so stay tuned the Mountain Stage blog!

This Week in Live Performance

(Radio Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 28, 2009
Brian Blauser
Mick & Kevin of Guggenheim Grotto

Ireland's Guggenheim Grotto craft fantastic, catchy melodies like their life depends on it. Their debut album "...Waltzing Alone" brought them to Mountain Stage in 2006 and we've been fans ever since. Their latest, "Happy the Man" expands on their use of electronic elements without drowning the songs in blips and bleeps.

When the two returned to our show in February they did sparse, acoustic renditions of the tunes from "Happy," giving emphasis to their superb vocal harmony and their lyrics. There's no picking a favorite environment - live or studio - because they pull it off either way. This is quite an addictive band and we're gonna turn you on for FREE. Give it a recommendation if you like what you hear (just click the little box).

Brian Blauser

Duncan Sheik never ceases to evolve either. His touring troupe this time, pictured above, included French horn, cello and bass clarinet. This photo was taken during rehearsal, but it seems to capture the mood of Duncan's latest creation, the haunting and evocative "Whisper House." You can hear their performance, recorded live, over at NPR Music.

Stay tuned for more great music, just the way you like it - LIVE!

Buckwheat Zydeco on Radio This Weekend!

(Radio Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 24, 2009
Brian Blauser

In most areas, those of you listening on the radio will hear our show recorded in February featuring Louisiana's own Buckwheat Zydeco, Emmy & Grammy winner Duncan Sheik, Memphis' Amy LaVere, Irish pop-duo Guggenheim GrottoJD Souther and Beth Neilsen Chapman.

Click HERE for a list of stations in your area that carry Mountain Stage.  We're not available in your area? You can listen on-line to WV Public Broacasting. Just go to WVPubCast.org and click on the Listen Live link. You can catch Mountain Stage Sundays at 3pm EST or Saturday night at 8pm.You can even choose what player you want to use.

Pat McGee

Our next live recording here in Charleston features Pat McGeeHoots & Hellmouth,  Tim EastonColin Linden and Meg Hutchinson. Get tickets HERE, call 800.594.TIXX, or at Taylor Books in Downtown Charleston. Showtime is 7pm.

Your friend and mine, Pat McGee is overing up a free download thanks to RockRidge Music. Get yours by clicking HERE.

Brian Blauser

If you missed our show featuring Dierks BentleyReagan BoggsAndy Friedman & The Other FailuresGrayson Capps and Jessica Lea Mayfield, you can hear the entire show in our ARCHIVES section or head over to NPR Music to hear the individual sets. Both include songs not heard on the radio!

Thanks for listening!

Buddy Guy, Fiction Family, Neko Case

(Live Shows, Radio Shows, Recollections) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 16, 2009

Buddy Guy to play an hour June 19 - You know and love to hear Buddy Guy as much as we do, and we know that the typical half-hour set is hardly enough to contain the man. That's why we've asked him to do a special extended set when he joins us for our June 19 FestivALL kick-off event. Buddy'll be bendin' strings for the better part of an hour as a special treat!

Tickets are available now at TheClayCenter.org and can be ordered by calling 304.561.3570. There is only one price level (a steal @ $29) but seats ARE RESERVED so the best seats go to the first in line.

This show is going to rock the roof off the Clay Center with Duke RobillardShemekia Copeland and the slide-guitar tour de force, Lil Ed & The Blues Imperials.  


Neko Case performed on Letterman last night. One week before she joins us in Charleston, Wednesday April 22, at the Charleston Civic Center's Little Theater.

Get your tickets on-line now or call 800.745.3000.

You can also view our "Setting the Stage" newsletter (Adobe Reader required) for more info on this and other upcoming shows. (Thanks to Shawn Patterson)

Looks like Eric Bachmann, front man of Crooked Fingers, was playing some guitar with Case & Co. last night. 
The Charleston Gazette has a nice feature on Vic Chesnutt - a long time friend of the show who will make his seventh appearance on Mountain Stage next Wednesday. 
Brian Blauser

And The Charleston Daily Mail had a nice chat with prolific songwriter and label founder Greg Brown.

Get your tickets on-line now or call 800.745.3000.

Brian Blauser
Fiction Family (L to R) Jon Foreman, Sara Watkins, Tyler Chester and Sean Watkins rehearse, Jan. 18, 2009

In a previous post we mentioned that Sara Watkins is the last of the three Nickel Creek members to visit Mountain Stage since the band's hiatus was announced. This statement wasn't entirely accurate. (Apparently some at the office are into fact-checking the blog now? Or they are just proud to remember stuff.)

We have, indeed, seen/heard Sara outside of the Nickel Creek realm, recently as a matter of fact. She appeared as a member of Fiction Family with her brother Sean and Switchfoot front-man Jon Foreman. The Fiction Family recorded a set with us in January and you can hear it now at NPR Music. It was one of their first handful of performances as a unit.

John Paul Jones, ?uestlove, Sara Watkins and Sean Watkins at the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

When Sara visits us June 7 she'll be singing her own stuff from her debut solo effort. There is a nice interview with Sara over at Paste.com and her brother Sean recently returned the favor by appearing with her on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. 

Tickets aren't on sale for this date until May 4, but her new self-titled solo album is available now. You might even consider picking one up Saturday while you're celebrating Record Store Day.

Brian Blauser

One of our frequent guests Peter Case has undergone heart surgery and some big-time friends are having several benefit shows for him in early May to help with his mounting medical costs. Hope those in the Santa Monica, CA area will consider attending. There are details here

You can listen to Case's most recent appearance here, which includes a reading from his first memoir, "As Far As You Can Get Without a Passport." We wish Peter the best in his recovery.

Leo Kottke, The Duhks, Dierks- LIVE

(Radio Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 14, 2009
Brian Blauser
"[Mountain Stage] is one of the scarier things I've done."- Leo Kottke

Guitar phenomenon and finger-style pioneer Leo Kottke is featured now at Mountain Stage's home over at NPR Music. We are proud to be the first NPR program to feature him since a 2005 piece on his record with Phish bassist (and recent guest) Mike Gordon.

If you've never experienced Kottke live, give it a listen - the man's personality is like no other and he lets it shine. Mountain Stage is like a balloon. Who knew?

Brian Blauser
L to R: The Duhks' Christian Dugas, Tania Elizabeth, Sarah Dugas, Jordan McConnall and Leonard Padolak backstage in Morgantown, WV

You can hear Canadian roots-gurus The Duhks later today at NPR Music. Leonard Padolak, singer and banjo player (far right, above) sat on the side of the stage during Kottke's set, completely enthralled at the guitar master. It's always nice to see musicians enjoying music.

The Duhks incorporate so many elements into their music, it's not just an American hodge-podge but a coolly calculated melding of world styles with lots of harmony and spicy percussion. Their latest is called "Fast Paced World."

Brian Blauser
Dierks Bentley

You can preview this weekend's broadcast today thanks to our Song of the Week feature right here at MountainStage.org. Just look for the SotW box in the center column (below the blog) or click here to go directly.

Country super-star Dierks Bentley performs the lead single and title track  from his latest CD, "Feel That Fire." Much more Dierks, plus Grayson CappsJessica Lea MayfieldReagan Boggs and Andy Friedman & the Other Failures in this weekend's edition of Mountain Stage Radio.Click here for a list of stations in your area.

Lil Ed & Blues Imperials - June 19

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By Mountain Stage
 · April 9, 2009
This just in: We've added a fourth act to the already stellar line-up to our Friday, June 19 FestivALL Kick-off Mountain Stage radio show with Buddy GuyShemekia Copeland and Duke Robillard at the Clay Center.  
Lil Ed Williams - slide guitar fire-ball

There are few acts in the blues as exciting and invigorating as Lil Ed & the Blues Imperials . The  nephew of legendary slide-guitarist JB Hutto, Lil' Ed Williams is the direct descendant of slide-blues, following in the footsteps of Elmore JamesHound Dog Taylor and Hutto with an unmatched energy and musicianship.

Lil Ed & the Blues Imperials, 2009

Lil Ed & the Blues Imperials first and only appearance on Mountain Stage was an impromptu booking in 1989 on a show that also featured Dr. John, Larry Coryell, Bob Thompson and Ann Baker.

Unusually enough, the line-up is exactly the same, some twenty years later. Ed's brother "Pookie" plays the bass, Mike Garrett plays rhythm guitar and Kelly Littleton on drums.

Lil Ed & the Blues Imperials, 1989

This promises to be one heckuva show. Tickets for this special FRIDAY Mountain Stage are on-sale NOW at The ClayCenter.org, by calling 304-561-3570 or in downtown Charleston at Taylor Books.

May 3 Guests Announced

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By Mountain Stage
 · April 8, 2009
Pat McGee
We've added some names to the line-up for our May 3 radio recording in Charleston, WV along with Pat McGee. Read on for guest and ticket info... 
Meg Hutchinson

Meg Hutchinson  Her debut CD for Red House records, "Come Up Full," was produced by Crit Harmon (Lori McKenna, Martin Sexton, Mary Gauthier). Raised up by English teachers in Massachusetts,  Meg Hutchinson first caught our ears at the 2005 Mountain Stage NewSong Contest for performing songwriters. She was a co-winner that year and it's great to finally invite her to be on the Mountain Stage radio show.

Hoots & Hellmouth

Hoots & Hellmouth - These guys play an acoustically-driven revival type of music that's as much fun as it is witty and catchy. They have a new record due out "in the spring" to follow up 2007's self-titled release  It'll be released on MAD Dragon, a service of Drexel University and home to The Swimmers and the Redwalls.


Canadian bluesman, producer and guitarist Colin Linden is a member of Blackie & the Rodeo Kings along with Tom Wilson (a.k.a Lee Harvey Osmond). His latest solo CD "From the Water" came out in February, along with a four-disc retrospect called "The Columbia Years."

In addition to his songwriting skills, he's worked as guitarist and producer. Colin has played on over 300 albums and produced more than 60 CDs working with artists such as Bruce Cockburn, Colin James, The Band, Leon Redbone, T-Bone Burnett, Keb ‘Mo’, Lucinda Williams and Emmylou Harris.


Originally from Ohio, now living in California, singer/songwritervisual artist and part time thought-contributor at No DepressionTim Easton will be joining us.

Doors at 6:30pm on May 3. Showtime is 7pm.

You can get tickets ONLINE or by calling 800.594.TIXX(8499).

Tickets can be purchased locally at Taylor Books in Downtown, Charleston. See you at the Cultural Center!

Rachel Yamagata on NPR Music

(Radio Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 7, 2009
Brian Blauser
Rachel Yamagata on Mountain Stage, Dec. 7, 2008

You can hear Rachel Yamagata's Mountain Stage set today at NPR Music. Her latest record, Elephants...Teeth Sinking Into Heart, is a record in two parts - the more reflective Elephants and the harder-hitting Teeth.

The NPR Music set features a performance of "Elephants," that had to be cut from the radio version. The ethereal guitar accompaniment to Rachel's voice and piano is the masterful work of Michael Chaves. "Be, Be your Love" comes from her first full-length record, 2004's "Happenstance." Love the way she makes her voice leap towards the end. No keyboards in that intro to "Sunday Afternoon," either - that is all Chaves.

Brian Blauser
Poster Row at the 25th Anniversary celebration

Yamagata joined us for Mountain Stage's 25th Anniversary special back in December, 2008 along with Joan Osborne, The Low Anthem, Todd Burge and Johnny Staats & Robert Shafer.

Here's a photo of various posters from throughout the years on display at the Cultural Center. Still to come later this week, we'll meet John Kessler and Deni Bonet, former Mountain Stage band members who've gone on to do other great things across the country.

Post-Nickelcreek Trifecta Complete

(Live Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 6, 2009

Since the 2006 hiatus heard 'round the world, original Nickel Creek members Chris Thile and Sean Watkins have both made return trips to the Mountain Stage radio show: Chris with his group Punch Brothers (hear them here) and Sean along with Jon Foreman and their band Fiction Family (coming up on this weekend's radio broadcast).

We're pleased to announce the debut solo appearance by fiddler and singer Sara Watkins, behind her brand new self-titled CD, produced by (THE) John Paul Jones, due out April 7 on Nonesuch Records.

Sara will join us June 7 in Princeton, WV at the Chuck Mathena Center along with the aforementioned Steve EarleDoyle Lawson & QuicksilverKing Wilkie and the Lovell Sisters. Tickets go on sale MAY 4. 

Thanks for the Memories

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By Mountain Stage
 · April 6, 2009
Chris Morris
The Gourds' Kevin Russel and Scott Tipping of Backyard Tire Fire during the finale April 5, 2009.

Another BIG THANKS to everyone who joined us in the audience last night in Charleston. Our sincere thanks to our guests - The GourdsTom RushBackyard Tire FireSusan Werner and The Deep Vibration - and to everyone who made the show happen.

You can hear yourselves on the radio in most areas during the weekend of June 12-15. Click HERE to find a station in your area, or you can listen here at WVPUBCAST.org every Sunday at 3pm and Saturdays at 8pm.

Joan Osborne, Michael Chaves, Rachel Yamagata & Deni Bonet - December 7, 2008

On the Radio this past weekend was our 25th Anniversary show featuring Joan OsborneRachel YamagataThe Low AnthemTodd Burge and Johnny Staats & Robert Shafer. You can check out the play list HERE.

You can also hear an extended set byJoan Osborne today at NPR Music featuring a version of "Cathedrals" from Little Wild One that wasn't on the radio broadcast.

Brian Blauser
Francis Fisher, Andy Ridenour and Larry Groce, December 7, 2008
Here you see the co-founders of Mountain Stage - Chief Engineer Francis Fisher, Executive Producer Andy Ridenour and Host & Artistic Director Larry Groce - at the 25th Anniversary celebration. The cake was the wonderful creation of Charm City Cakes out of Baltimore, MD. The bakery is the subject of the Food Network's "Ace of Cakes."
Brian Blauser
OK, so we have some connections. Mountain Stage bassist Steve Hill is the proud father of Katherine Hill, co-star and cake artist at Charm City. Katherine transported the cake, assembled it at the Cultural Center, then took it down and re-assembled it at the post-show gathering at the Marriott. 
Brian Blauser
Katherine doesn't get enough face time on "Ace of Cakes," so we'll give her some on the Mountain Stage blog. Our sincere thanks to Katherine and everyone at Charm City Cakes. 

HERE is a newspaper article on the Hurricane High School graduate by the Charleston Daily Mail.
Stay tuned to the blog for more photos from our 25th Anniversary Special and all the latest updates for our upcoming LIVE SHOWS. 

New Guests Just Added

(Live Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 3, 2009
Steve Earle
Just added to the line-up for our June 7 road-show in Princeton, WV is songwriting legend (and guest star on Law & Order-SVU and The WireSteve Earle. This will be Mr. Earle's fourth appearance on Mountain Stage since 1996. He is following up 2007's acclaimed "Washington Square Serenade" with "Townes," a tribute to his favorite songwriter, the late great Townes Van Zandt. The record will be out May 12 but you can get a four song EP version on iTunes, or preview two tracks at SteveEarle.com.
Also joining in us at the Chuck Mathena Center in Princeton will be acoustic group King Wilkie. Their latest release is a collaborative effort titled "King Wilkie Presents: The Wilkie Family Singers." Guest stars include Peter Rowan, Robyn Hitchcock and Sam Parton from The Be Good Tanyas.

Their last appearance on Mountain Stage, a show at the beautiful Smokies on the Gorge in Fayetteville, WV was a great treat. You can even hear crickets during the softer sections. The Mp3 is in our ARCHIVES.
Tickets for June 7 go on sale May 4 and will be available through the Chuck Mathena Center or by calling 877.425.5128.
Duke Robbilard

We've added the multi-faceted guitarist extraordinaire Duke Robbilard to our June 19 FestivALL Charleston kick-off event along with Shemekia Copeland and Buddy Guy.

Tickets are on-sale NOW at The Clay Center or by calling 304- 561-3570.

Stay tuned to the Live-Show Schedule and the Mountain Stage Blog for updates. We've got more great stuff cookin' up.

Get your tix for this Sunday

(Live Shows) Permanent link
By Mountain Stage
 · April 2, 2009

There are some tickets available for this Sunday's live recording in Charleston. Doors open at 6:30pm and showtime is 7pm. The box office opens at 5pm at the Cultural Center if you want to purchase tickets on show day.

Advance tickets are available ONLINE and by calling 800.594.TIXX.

Check out our stellar PDF Newsletter HERE: done beautifully by Shawn Patterson here at WV Public Radio. (Adobe Reader required).

The Deep Vibration

There is a nice article in the Charleston Daily Mail on Nashville Roots-Rockers The Deep Vibration- Click HERE to read it.

Susan Werner

The more I look at this line-up, the more I realize what a diverse melting pot Larry has cooked up for us. Susan Werner is doing chamber-folk interpretations of pop tunes (Bob Marley, Simon & Garfunkel, Marvin Gaye among them) on her latest CD called "Classics". Ms. Werner is bringing a cellist with her to Mountain Stage after doing two shows at Joe's Pub in NYC.

Backyard Tire Fire have opened for gritty-prog rockers Clutch and former Drive By Trucker Jason Isblell, but their sound has a jangly, ringing guitar sound that echoes the likes of Tom Petty and North Mississippi Allstars. Dig this Chicago session of "Shoulda' Shut It" from their CD "The Places We Lived," available on vinyl, CD and Mp3. This could be the best song Weezer never wrote.

Singer-songwriter Tom Rush has emerged again into the public eye with this video for "The Remember Song," a "modern-day yuppie blues" as he calls it.

The video has over 3.5 million views, so there must be a lot of folks having the same difficulties with their memory as he is.

Andy Goodwin
The Gourds

Then there's Austin, TX good-ol boys The Gourds who were Americana long before it was a genre with a chart. Their latest, Haymaker! has been climbing that chart.

This one promises to be a great show, so tell some friends, spread the word on MySpace and get your tickets today.

Two Guests Added-May 10

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By Mountain Stage
 · April 1, 2009
Rocco DeLuca
We just added two new guests to the line-up for May 10 in Charleston - beginning with Rocco DeLuca & the Burden. This dobro-rocker's latest (Daniel Lanois produced) CD "Mercy," and its lead single "Save Yourself," have been garnering lots of attention  
DeLuca did the song recently on the Tonight Show but here is the official video, directed by Keifer Sutherland. The washy Lanois noises reward you with each listen and DeLuca kind of sings like Chris Cornell.
There are some live versions out there also, including one for TV Guide.
Meaghan Smith
This promises to be a real treat: Pop influenced singer Meaghan Smith rounds out the line-up for May 10. The London, Ontario, Canada raised-singer has a fantastic video for her single "If You Asked Me" with a flapper girl theme featuring mop flirtations, coat roack dancing and, well, just watch it for yourself. Its the perfect compliment to the song's speak-easy sound. 
She'll be fresh off of a tour opening for kd lang when she comes to Charleston and we get the feeling a whole lot more people will know her name and music after that.
Also joining us on May 10 will be Martin SextonRuthie Foster and Yarn. Tickets are online HERE, by calling 800.594.TIXX and also at Taylor Books, downtown Charleston. 

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