ABOUT RAR: For those of
you new to this site, "RAR" is Rick Alan Rice, the publisher
of the RARWRITER Publishing Group websites.
Use this link to visit the
RAR music page, which features original music
compositions and other.
ATWOOD - "A Toiler's Weird Odyssey of Deliverance"-AVAILABLE
NOW FOR KINDLE (INCLUDING KINDLE COMPUTER APPS) FROM
CCJ Publisher Rick Alan Rice dissects
the building of America in a trilogy of novels
collectively calledATWOOD. Book One explores
the development of the American West through the
lens of public policy, land planning, municipal
development, and governance as it played out in one
of the new counties of Kansas in the latter half of
the 19th Century. The novel focuses on the religious
and cultural traditions that imbued the American
Midwest with a special character that continues to
have a profound effect on American politics to this
day. Book One creates an understanding about
America's cultural foundations that is further
explored in books two and three that further trace
the historical-cultural-spiritual development of one
isolated county on the Great Plains that stands as
an icon in the development of a certain brand of
American character. That's the serious stuff viewed
from high altitude. The story itself gets down and
dirty with the supernatural, which inATWOOD
- A Toiler's Weird Odyssey of Deliveranceis the
outfall of misfires in human interactions, from the
monumental to the sublime.The
book features the epic poem"The
well as artwork by New Mexico artist Richard
Meets Larry McMurtry
I am offering another
novel through Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing service.
Cooksin is the story of a criminal syndicate that sets its
sights on a ranching/farming community in Weld County, Colorado,
1950. The perpetrators of the criminal enterprise steal farm
equipment, slaughter cattle, and rob the personal property of
individuals whose assets have been inventoried in advance and
distributed through a vast system of illegal commerce.
It is a ripping good yarn, filled
with suspense and intrigue. This was designed intentionally to
pay homage to the type of creative works being produced in 1950,
when the story is set. Richard Padilla
has done his usually brilliant work in capturing the look and feel of
a certain type of crime fiction being produced in that era. The
whole thing has the feel of those black & white films you see on
Turner Movie Classics, and the writing will remind you a little
of Elmore Leonard, whose earliest works were westerns.
Use this link.
EXPLORE THE KINDLE
If you have not explored the books
available from Amazon.com's Kindle Publishing
division you would do yourself a favor to do so. You
will find classic literature there, as well as tons
of privately published books of every kind. A lot of
it is awful, like a lot of traditionally published
books are awful, but some are truly classics. You
can get the entire collection of Shakespeare's works
for two bucks.
Dutch ReBelle grew up
listening to opera, dancehall reggae and No Doubt as well as the Fugees, Goodie
Mob and Wu-Tang Clan. “With all my projects, I feel like there’s gonna be a
variety because that’s who I am. That’s what I mean by ReBelle Diaries. I used
to rap over beats that made no sense with hip-hop, like Tina Turner shit.”
After graduating from Penn State with a journalism degree in 2009, ReBelle
refocused on rapping, honing her skills at local and national showcases where
crowds don’t always expect a female MC to walk out. “That works in my favor,”
she says. “The flipside is [they’re] super-critical. You’d better get it right
within that first 30 seconds.”
from labor rallies to rock clubs, Tigerman WOAH have become Boston’s favorite
rabble-rousers, blending blues, punk and Appalachian folk into foot-stomping
revivals that champion the working class.
“It’s all coming from the same place, a response to a repressive world,” says
frontman Adam Kaz, who howls like Tom Waits and whacks away at a painted banjo-ukelele.
He and electric guitarist Jon Feinstorm migrated to Boston from Georgia,
enamored with both early-century roots music and socialism.
Raised on politically charged punk in his teens, Kaz moved on to Pete Seeger and
the Smithsonian Folkways series. “When Jonny and I got [Folkways], we lost our
shit,” he says. “That was a good two years where I didn’t listen to anything but
that, the Carter Family, Son House and Bukka White.”
To many, digital music distribution has made hard copies irrelevant—but
singer/guitarist Ben Potrykus and drummer
Andy Sadoway also see it as an
opportunity for novel ideas. With their trio Girlfriends, they released songs on
cassette and VHS tape, and under their new name, Bent Shapes, they just released
a 7-inch on Plexiglass. Bent Shapes’ tunes largely toggle on the metronomic, shifting
interplay between principals Sadoway and Potrykus, who says, “The idea of using
guitars as percussion instruments, interacting with drums, is pretty fascinating
Christopher Barnes survived what he calls a “traumatic experience”—having a
crane hoist a piano into his Somerville apartment. “I think about when I have to
move out,” says the singer/songwriter/pianist of chamber-pop group
Gem Club. But
it was worth the effort, considering the growing national buzz since the January
release of Gem Club’s second album, In Roses. And that piano is where it all
starts. “This is always sort of a jumping-off point, me and a piano, and then we
figure out how to take it from there.”
For In Roses, Barnes and his collaborators, cellist Kristen Drymala and vocalist
Ieva Berberian, recorded at John Vanderslice’s San Francisco studio, broadening
their palette through synthesizers and samplers as well as strings arranged with
the Magik*Magik Orchestra’s Minna Choi. They’ve since taken drum machines and
the synthesizers on tour, and Barnes says they’re working on reducing the
orchestral scores so they might employ small string sections at special shows.
When the six women of
Petty Morals first took the stage at the 2014 Rock ’n’
Roll Rumble at T.T. the Bear’s Place, it didn’t take long to predict their
deserving romp to the finals. They had delicious dance-punk chops, a joyous
rock-’n’-roll attitude befitting a group that got its name from a quote by Keith
Richards, and wicked catchy tunes, from originals like the breezy twister “Not
Going Back” to a killer cover of the Pointer Sisters’ “Neutron Dance.” And of
course, there’s that girl-power thang, magnified through giddy smiles and
show-specific fashion accessories, like Batman fight-scene bubble quotes pasted
on each member. “Bam!” indeed.
“We’re still silly girls,” drummer Lauren Recchia says, “but we’re also
It’s not typical for a band’s lyricist to picture himself as a tree, a blade of
grass or a turd stuck circling the toilet bowl. But Krill isn’t your typical
“The thing that drew me to philosophy was what drew me to Krill stuff,” says
bassist/singer Jonah Furman, who majored in philosophy at Johns Hopkins and
dabbles in existential lyrics as abstract as his Jamaica Plain trio’s art-punk.
“We’re doing complicated stuff, but we’re still pretty sloppy,” Furman says with
a note of pride. “We came up with our own thing in Somerville, then we went to
Allston and got loud, and then we went to JP and got weird. That’s the reductive
narrative, but it’s pretty true.”
The I Want You
The I Want You teeters between control and chaos, its keen pop structures
leavened by the loose feel of a band that jammed for three months before members
decided they should probably play a gig.
“Our rule’s been just to let it go and play,” bassist/singer
Jim Gerdeman says.
“We let everyone do their thing or add their thing to it. There’s no real
controlling idea that we’re trying to sound like or shared influences that we’re
trying to hit.”
The I Want You’s free-flowing chemistry stems from members’ diverse influences
and previous bands. Gerdeman grew up on classic rock like the Electric Light
Orchestra and Cheap Trick. Guitarist/keyboardist Jonathan Donaldson
the Color Forms as a fan of the Smiths and psychedelic pop. And guitarist
Blake Girndt played songs about the TV series Lost in the Easthampton novelty band the
Others. All three split lead vocals while Jonathan Ulman (Thalia Zedek) mans the
Punk rock often fits
the trope “three chords and the truth.” But in the case of
singer/bassist of the Hotelier, the truth gets expounded upon. He lets emotions
fly in torrents of lyrical introspection, and songs on his Worcester-based
band’s second album, Home, Like Noplace Is There, hover in the 300-word range.
Holden, guitarists Chris Hoffman and
Ben Gauthier, and drummer
Sam Frederick met
as students at Shepherd Hill Regional High School in Dudley, originally taking
the moniker the Hotel Year. They began touring in 2011, evolving from pop-punk,
a style Holden deemed “kind of shallow,” to more socio-politically conscious
rock, influenced by emo bands the Promise Ring and the Get Up Kids.
There’s a lot going on at a
Doom Lover show, starting with the divergent musical
backgrounds its three singers bring to the stage. Jeffrey Vachon comes to Doom
Lover from blues-rock ravers Big East, his fellow guitarist
Geoff Smith hails
from quieter shoegaze group De Osos, and synthesist Nikki Dessingue graced
electro-pop outfits Stereo Telescope and the chaotic Campaign for Real-Time.
It’s hard to imagine a more perfect odd-couple pairing on the Boston rock scene
than Parlour Bells co-founders
Glenn di Benedetto and
Nate Leavitt. “I probably
bring the weirder side of things,” says gangly, colorful frontman di Benedetto,
adding of burly, bearded guitarist/producer Leavitt, “He sorta anchors me.”
Leavitt, who also plays with soul-rockers OldJack and his own Nate Leavitt Band,
met di Benedetto in junior high school in Andover. They started playing in
bands, inspired by Guns N’ Roses and the L.A. metal scene, then Nine Inch Nails
and Jane’s Addiction. “Things like that stuck with us, the flamboyance of
glam-rock,” says di Benedetto, whose persona nods to David Bowie and Jane’s
Top 5 Boston Venues Locals
While Boston's House of Blues and a bunch of 200-plus capacity
venues play host to bigger names, there are a ton of smaller rooms where the
local scene is absolutely thriving. Like in any city, it's at those venues where
up-and-coming artists including Berklee students and alumni, electronic DJs, and
garage-punk bands hone their craft and develop loyal fanbases.
We've picked five of our favorites for their commitment to the area's
on-the-rise artists as well as their welcoming of underground touring acts.
There's even a mid-size venue in the bunch – it made the cut for maintaining its
allegiance to the local scene despite also welcoming more established artists.
There are plenty more worthy options we could have included, but this crop, we
think, are exemplary of Boston's mixed musical landscape and the locals'
enthusiasm for all it offers.
1. T.T. the Bear's Place
Rock 'n' roll is the apparent focus at this Cambridge spot, at
least as of late. Bands like San Francisco's Cool Ghouls and LA-by-way-of-Ottawa
act Peach Kelli Pop have both recently appeared on the calendar and, to the
delight of locals, both bills featured at least one Boston band as an opener.
That doesn't mean every show with a touring headliner is open to local bands,
but the venue clearly considers them when possible. T.T. The Bear's is a pillar
of the local rock 'n' roll scene in general, really. This May, it'll host – for
the fifth year running – the annual Rock 'n' Roll Rumble, a battle-of-the
bands-style competition established way back in 1979 that's open to local acts
from the greater Boston area. Oh, and the club was also the backdrop for
Sebadoh's "Ocean" video in the '90s!
2. O'Brien's Pub
The smaller, cozier sister venue to the 240-cap Great Scott,
this Allston club can only host about 60 people – and for bands and artists
still growing their fanbases, that's a pretty perfect capacity. O'Brien's Pub
welcomes all genres, but its calendar lately shows a penchant for both touring
and local acts pushing hardcore, metal, pop-punk, and the variations in between.
Because of its size, O'Brien's makes a great spot for locals (many from the
greater Boston area, too) looking to hone their chops, as well as newer or niche
touring bands. Plus, sometimes deserving bands are plucked from the Pub for gigs
at Great Scott.
3. Church of Boston
Located just a few blocks from Fenway Park, Church renovated a
now-closed venue's spot in 2007 to provide both an upscale bistro and a
225-capacity club. For hip-hop heads, it's a boon for the local scene –
according to the venue, their Motivate Mondays event is the city's only
underground weekly open mic night. Area musicians of other genres can also
appreciate Church for its month-long residencies during which bands and artists
can grow their fanbases with performances every Tuesday. There's room for locals
on the weekends, too, from Berklee students and grads to formidable
up-and-comers playing virtually every style possible.
4. Atwood's Tavern
This Cambridge spot is a haven for local bluegrass, country,
Americana, and folk players, and the Bostonians who love them. It's more of an
intimate listening room than a bustling venue, and that's perfect for the style
of music presented. There aren't many hubs in the city for this particular
crowd, and this is certainly one of the best.
5. Middlesex Lounge
Though folk, soul, Afrobeat, and reggae make an appearance
from time to time, electronic music has a heavy presence at Middlesex Lounge.
Pumping up dance parties Thursday through Sunday each week are eclectic DJs like
the BREK.ONE, who spins a blend of hip-hop, dancehall, electro, and more, or The
Bladerunners, a duo that filters everything from pop-punk to hip-hop to Hall &
Oates into their party-starting tracks. Their weekly electronic dance night is
where you'll often find special guests, like London-based trippy techno artist