WUMB June Program Guide

The Local Music Corner

Hello, WUMB readers! I hope you are well. Before I get started, I just want to thank you so much for your donations to WUMB May 14 to 18 on our brief direct-to-web fundraiser. It’s a tougher time for so many of us. Whether you contributed a small amount or a large sum to the station, I really appreciate it. Thanks to your contributions, large and small, we have the station we have. We can have a full day of Bob Dylan/Dylan covers. We can have a Dylan-heavy edition of Sunday Morning Brew on Bob Dylan’s birthday (May 24th). Thanks for your calls on that show, by the way. A lot of work went into that, but it was so worth it.

The Local Music Corner for June 2020

Despite still being in a situation that puts the livings of musicians in a real winch for both releasing and touring music, new music is still coming through. That includes more projects to benefit musicians struggling due to impacts of the fight against the Corona virus, and a release from a Boston artist we were about to lose late last year…who has decided he is better off staying here.

Bob Bradshaw, Paul Chase, Greg Klyma, Andy Santospago, and Dave Westner have collaborated on a new single (produced by Mr. Westner) called “In The Dark.” On my first listen, I imagined Chris Cornell’s band Soundgarden playing with production assistance from David Gilmore of Pink Floyd. Not the menace, but dark and moody. So yes, it is a different sound for what you would expect from these players.

Greg Klyma released the song, His description of how it came together is very 21st century: He saw a video of Andy playing a guitar riff to some bass from Paul. Greg came up with a guitar chord progression which Paul added bass to, which was sent to Andy. Andy shared it with Bob Bradshaw, who wrote some lyrics and then sang them into his iPhone. The electronic highway carried all this to Dave Westner. And so on.

You can find the song on Greg Klyma’s Bandcamp page. This track is being released as a fundraiser for the Boston-Cambridge Musicians Relief Fund (started by Boston musician Jim Haggerty, who you’ve probably seen back up many an area band in the clubs over the years).

Paul Hansen of the Grownup Noise has a healthy attitude about the difficulty of doing music in the days of the Corona Virus fight. He writes, “Screw it! New Grownup Noise album out June 5th.” You may remember the Grownup Noise about eight years ago as an eight piece band/orchestra, very eclectic sort of art rock/baroque. They did a WUMB Member Concert with Autumn Hollow playing covers of Neil Young with their own songs.

At a certain point, band members started families, moved away, etc. Paul has carried on in various configurations under the Grownup Noise banner over the years. For the new album, it is himself and drummer Max Weinstein. Paul says it is a “new sound, very different.” Perhaps most telling as a creative artist? He adds, “Had to do it.” I am officially intrigued.

Rare is the occasion when I find a video for a song adds to it or contributes to my interest in it. Ironically, Christian McNeill’s new single “Carousels” has lyrics that paint beautiful pictures. They are good enough to not need a video. Yet the central image in the video collaborates so nicely with those words and rhythms. So it’s a good match. I look forward to more information about a full album. But for now, this song is an encouraging start. Oh, and the B-side of this single (to use a lovely antiquated term from the pre-CD 20th century)? It’s called “Boston Sunrise.” I can’t wait to hear it on headphones while watching the sunrise in, say, Rockport (MA).

Glad you are still here, Mr. M.

A Boston music institution over the last 25 years (“it’s good to be lauded,” he told me during his 2019 Guest Mix session), Tim Gearan has some new music. There is “It’s Not The End of the World.” This is described on his website as “a song about emotional cowardice.” Maybe the first words from the character in the song give us added insight: “I will not ask for directions and I’ll tell you why. I’m happy right here in the dark where it’s safe and it’s dry.” Hmm, I think we’re in for some revelations later in the lyrics… The track is very catchy.

It looks like Tim has another new song, “While The World Goes By.” This one’s got a breezier feel. And in these days of trying to stay at home as much as possible, the song gives me a vibe of a nice day out at the fair. And when it’s in your mind, you don’t have to wear a face covering or stay apart from anyone. So let’s hear it for songs and stories that we can live vicariously through!

You can find both songs at TimGearanMusic.com.

Even in times like these, it seems Chandler Travis cannot sit still. He has just released 14 songs from his days with Steve Shook (aka Travis & Shook, aka Travis Shook & the Club Wow). Called Memoirs of An Opening Act, most of the songs are live, 40 years old, and previously unreleased in any form. Travis & Shook were a duo back in 1968. They played and toured constantly. Among the variety of artists they opened for was George Carlin, who according to Chandler, kept them “touring and overpaid for ten years or so.”

Check out Chandler Travis’ website for more releases than you can shake a stick at. For the time being, he is releasing songs from his archives every month.

Cold Chocolate – the band lead by singer/guitarist Ethan Robbins and percussionist Ariel Bernstein – have a new album out on June 26th. Down The Line is their third full-length release. Robbins and Bernstein are very excited about a newer wrinkle to their sound. This collection of tunes has more electric instrumentation than what they are mostly known for. But as evolving musicians it is, according to Bernstein, where they are now as musicians. So they are very excited about the new record.

Can’t wait to investigate it for yourself? The title track is available online. Check their website, ColdChocolateMusic.com

And if you are a fan of artistic drawings, you will also find the album art appealing. It is worth noting the artist: Erin Lobb Mason.

Another band promising a slightly new direction in their sound is Love Love, the multi-piece band lead by Chris Toppin and her husband Jefferson Reardon. Love Love expect to have their new album out by mid-June. According to Jefferson, it will have “a little more psychedelia, a little dash of R&B…” I definitely hear a little Marvin Gaye meets 1969 Miles Davis in the track called “How Lonely Can I Be With You?” The band do sound like they are enjoying reaching a little outside their zone. But Love Love’s comfort zone has been expanding anyway in their live shows. Whatever they do, if Jefferson & Chris’ harmonies are a part of it, I’m on board.

What is easy to forget about Love Love is that Jefferson Reardon and Chris Toppin also have a production company called Witchwood Music Productions. And Witchwood has bands of its own. Jefferson promises releases this month and throughout the summer from some of their artists. More information can be found along the information superhighway at www.witchwoodmusic.com.

That’s all for now. Thanks for supporting our many talented local musicians. I’d normally finish by saying something like, “see you out at the clubs or a summer venue soon.” But ah… How about “keep your eyes on the websites/social media of your favorite artists and venues.” Hang in there, stay safe/sane/smart and whenever possible, humorous.

~ Perry





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