Wednesday MidDay Medley’s The 119 Best Recordings of 2019

The 119 Best Recordings of 2019 are based on playlists of Wednesday MidDay Medley. We compiled representative tracks from our favorite full-length and EP recordings of 2019 (and a few that came out late in 2018). We realize these “Best of” lists can seem subjective, so we ask that you please accept our list as a celebration of the year in music. In 2019 we have broadcast nearly 800 musical recordings through our 90.1 FM Community Radio Airwaves. Over 400 of these tracks were from New & MidCoastal Releases. We played tracks from 145 National Releases, and 183 MidCoastal Releases. 75 of the representative tracks in our “Best of” list are from MidCoastal Releases. In 2019 we conducted 127 interviews, with 209 special guests. 43 of the bands and artists in our “Best of” list have joined us as guests on WMM.

(1.) Making Movies – ameri’kana / 3/2 Recordings / May 24, 2019
[Produced by Steve Berlin and Ben Yonas. 3rd full length release from KC based 4-piece band and made up of two sets of brothers: Enrique Chi on guitar and lead vocals; Diego Chi on bass & vocals; Juan-Carlos Chaurand on percussion & keyboards; and Andres Chaurand on drums. The band draws their influences from the origins of their families: Santiago, Panama, and Kansas City, Missouri, and Guadalajara, Mexico. The notes for this album read: “ameri’kana is a canary in a coal mine, the watchman at the tower. It is a desire to remember where we come from and assure that we better ourselves in every step along our journey. Every chapter is an example, a reason to not be silent and not accept corrupt leaders as something inevitable. ameri’kana is based on faith, faith that every person on this continent carries within themselves the ability to grow, to awaken their consciousness and merits the the same rights. We were accomplices to get ourselves to this point so we will have to be accomplices in the solutions.” This was their follow up released to their critically acclaimed I Am Another You, released May 26, 2017. The quartet has toured with Arcade Fire, Thievery Corporation, Cold War Kids, Los Lobos, Ozomatli, Tennis, Sergio Mendoza of Calexico, Rodrigo y Gabriela, and Hurray for the Riff Raff.]

(2.) The Black Creatures – Wild Echoes / The Black Creatures / September 30, 2019
[Darkpop hip-hop pulling elements from sci-fi to tell an inter-dimensional story. Xavier Martin and Jade Green have made an impression of the KC music community with their videos and songs, live shows in clubs, art galleries, record stores, area music festivals and shows in surrounding areas. They’ve released an EP, an album, and several singles.]

(3.) Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear – Started With a Family / Starts With Music, LLC / September 6. 2019
[Produced with Grammy-winner Nathan Chapman at iconic Blackbird Studios in Nashville. Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear have garnered international acclaim, and new fans from all over the world. They signed with Glassnote Records and recorded their debut full length album in Nashville with acclaimed producer Jim Abiss. They performed their debut single “Silent Movies” on The Late Show with David Letterman, they’ve toured across the United States, and Europe, more than once. They were featured on CBS Sunday Morning, NBC’s The Today Show, and “Later With Jools Holland and played Bonnaroo, Pilgramage, and the Newport Folk Festival, and the Ryman Theatre, in Nashville. Ruth Ward has continually performed throughout her life, mostly in coffee shops and open mics, for over 30 years, even recording a solo record. In the midst of this she got married and became a mom, and was busy raising a family. Madisen Ward was born in Oklahoma, and grew up in the outskirts of Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from William Chrisman High School in 2007. Madisen’s journey to become a musician, was “melodically passed down” through the songs of his mother, where Madisen grew up watching his mom perform at local coffee shops. Eventually he began to learn to play the guitar, and poured his talent for writing into the music to create original songs. They began playing Madisen’s original songs along with the occassional cover of a classic track, reinterpreted in their own incredibly beautiful performace of two voices and two guitars in harmony and orchestration. Their debut album, The Skeleton Crew, was released May 9, 2015 and was our most played record that year and was #1 on WMM’s The 115 Best Recordings of 2015. Their follow up EP Radio Winners was released July 27, 2018 and recieved critical acclaim.] [Madisen Ward and The Mama Bear played Crossroads Music Fest, Sat., Sept 7,, Crossroads KC, with Shy Boys, Split Lip Rayfield, The Freedom Affair.]

(4.) Calvin Arsenia – L.A. Sessions / Center Cut Records / September 20, 2019
[Produced by Tony Braunagel (he also delivers exquisite percussion on LA Sessions) with Paul Brown on guitar, Mike Finnigan on keyboards, Freddie Washington on bass, and David Garfield on piano. Between them, the five musicians have worked with some of music’s most iconic names, including Jimi Hendrix, George Benson, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Leonard Cohen, Bonnie Raitt, Chuck Loeb, Rickie Lee Jones, Buddy Guy, The Neville Brothers. “It was a thrill for me to work with such legendary players,” says Calvin. “Not only were they incredibly talented, but I got off a plane straight from Australia, hit the studio, and they were more than ready to get to that place where you honor the songs, leaving their egos at the door and honoring what the muses tell them. It was one of the best recording experiences I ever had.” Calvin’s production M.O. on previous recordings was to piece together songs “like pieces of a puzzle” and “layer them over several sessions.” Born in Orlando, Florida, Calvin’s creative journey really began when he moved to the KC suburb of Olathe, teaching himself the guitar, and eventually the harp. He learned his signature instrument at the age of 20 after he couldn’t find a harpist as determined as him to meld folk, rock, classical, rap and R&B into the irresistible fusion which has become his calling card in the Kansas City music scene and beyond. His passion for stretching the boundaries of musical expression saw him transform a trip to Edinburgh, Scotland’s Fringe Festival early in his career into a life-changing music mission, with an Edinburgh church offering him a role as musical liaison between the church and the city that would change his life. Two years and 300 shows later, Calvin returned to Kansas City reborn as a humanistic songwriter/performer whose impassioned and conceptual stage shows (regularly sold-out in Kansas City, currently catching fire on the West Coast with a diverse following across Europe), are collaborative, costumed-culture-bridging spectacles which In KC Magazine has hailed as ‘equal parts opera, symphony, musical theatre, rock show, all built around its creator: a charismatic 6-foot-6-inch harpist with a natural stage command and knack for gilding gold and painting lilies.’ Calvin’s 2018 national debut, Cantaloupe, September 15, 2018 on Center Cut Records, has been acclaimed for melding diverse textures into an alluring signature sound for the adventurous artist. On June 28, 2019 Calvin released Honeydew, an EP including a remix of three songs from Cantaloupe. On December 13, 2019 Clvin released his full length Christmas album “all is calm.”]

(5.) Kevin Morby – Oh My God / Dead Oceans / April 29, 2019
[5th release from Kevin Robert Morby born April 2, 1988. follow up to his 2017 release City Music. Kevin learned to play guitar when he was 10. In his teens he formed the band Creepy Aliens. 17-year-old Morby dropped out of Blue Valley Northwest High School, got his GED, and moved from his native Kansas City to Brooklyn in the mid-2000s, supporting himself by working bike delivery and café jobs. He later joined the noise-folk group Woods on bass. While living in Brooklyn, he became close friends and roommates with Cassie Ramone of the punk trio Vivian Girls, and the two formed a side project together called The Babies, who released albums in 2011 and 2012. He began a solo career in 2013 releasing his debut album Harlem River. His 2nd album Still Life was released in 2014. His album Singing Saw was in WMM’s The 116 Best Recordings of 2016. His album City Music was in WMM’s The 118 Best Recordings of 2018]

(6.) Kelly Hunt – Even The Sparrow / Rare Bird Records / May 17, 2019
[The daughter of an opera singer and a saxophonist, Kelly Hunt was raised in Memphis, TN, and grew up performing other people’s works through piano lessons, singing in choirs, and performing theater. “It was a very creative, artistic household,” says Hunt. During her teenage years, influenced by musical inspirations as diverse as Norah Jones, Rachmaninov, and John Denver, she began writing her own songs on the piano as a creative outlet. After being introduced to the banjo in college while studying French and visual arts, Hunt began to develop her own improvised style of playing, combining old-time picking styles with the percussive origins of the instrument. “I’m self-taught, I just started letting the songs dictate what needed to be there,” she says. “I heard a rhythm in a song that I wanted to execute, so I figured out how to do it on the drum head while still being able to articulate certain notes in one motion.” After college, Hunt followed a rambling path that took her through careers in acting, graphic design, traditional French bread making, and medicine, all the while making music as a private endeavor. “I wanted to get serious about a responsible career choice, but music kept bubbling up. I was writing a lot and playing a lot and started to not be satisfied just playing to my walls of my room.” After moving to Kansas City and discovering her mysterious Depression-era tenor banjo, Hunt began recording Even The Sparrow in Kansas City alongside collaborator Stas’ Heaney and engineer Kelly Werts. “It took almost two years to record,” she says, “learning how to let the songs dictate the production.” Having finally come to light, the album displays Hunt’s penchant for masterful storytelling and intriguing arrangement, as researched and complex as they are memorable, punctuated by her articulate melodies and a well-enunciated and creative command of lyrical delivery infused with deft emotional communication. While reminiscent of modern traditionalists such as Gillian Welch–a number of her songs even borrow titles and phrasing from traditional American music (“Back to Dixie,” “Gloryland”)–Even The Sparrow reveals an ineffable quality that hovers beyond the constraints of genre, à la Anais Mitchell and Patty Griffin. In “The Men of Blue & Grey,” what begins as a Reconstruction-era ballad about the repurposing of Civil War glass plate negatives in a greenhouse roof soon becomes a meditation on the hope that growth and life may one day be able to emerge from the ruins of suffering and haunting of violence. “Across The Great Divide” turns an otherwise traditional accounting of spurned love into a philosophical epic of the ethics of forgiveness and freedom, evoking the ideas of Søren Kierkegaard and Walt Whitman.]

(7.) Mess – Learning How To Talk / Mess / March 29, 2019
[Debut full length album from Kansas City based band formed by: Allison Gliesman, Kevin Briody, Tanner Pinkerton & Evan Velasquez. Produced by Patrick Robinson, mixed by Braxton Matlock, and mastered by Troy Glessner (spectre). Mess previously released several singes and heartswithholes EP in 2017.]

(8.) Hembree – House on Fire / OREAD Records / April 26, 2019
[KC based band was formed in November of 2015, with Isaac Flynn on guitar, & lead vocals, Garrett Childers on bass & vocals, Eric Davis on keys & synth, Alex Ward on guitar, and Austin Ward on drums. Hembree is signed to Thirty Tigers of Nashville, TN. The band was founded by original members Isaac Flynn, Garrett Childers, and Eric Davis. Brothers Alex and Austin Ward later joined in 2018. Hembree quickly garnered national attention after their single “Holy Water” was placed in an Apple commercial that aired during Super Bowl LII. The band’s music has been featured in a variety of other national placements, including Monday Night Football (NFL) and Bose. Hembree has notably supported Elvis Costello, Phoenix, Cold War Kids, Vance Joy, JR JR, and Joywave, among others. The band first toured Europe in Fall 2018. In 2018, Hembree signed with Thirty Tigers (The Avett Brothers, Lupe Fiasco) to release their first full-length album House on Fire, released 4/26/2019. In 2019, Hembree performed at Hangout Music Festival. They will also appear on the soundtrack of 13 Reasons Why: Season 3 with the song “Culture”. Hembree was named one of NPR’s Slingshot 2018 Artists to Watch. Rolling Stone named Hembree as one of the thirty best artists at SXSW 2018. “Had It All” debuted on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 on January 19, 2017. Lowe described the song as “absolutely fantastic.” “Holy Water” was featured in Apple’s HomePod “Distortion” TV spot, which ran during Super Bowl LII, the 60th Annual Grammy Awards, and the 2018 Winter Olympics.]

(9.) Julia Othmer – Sound / Frickin Awesome Records / April 12, 2019
[Julia Othmer’s second album, that took 3 years to complete, and was produced with James Lundie, who also married Julia in January of 2016, during the completion of the record. Julia Othmer, is a graduate of Park Hill High School and studied at Columbia University in New York City. She moved to Los Angeles in 2006 to record her 1st full-length album, “Oasis Motel.”]

(10.) The Creepy Jingles – The Creepy Jingles (EP) / High Dive Records / May 3, 2019
[Debut EP Release from The Creepy Jingles: Jocelyn Olivia Nixon on lead vocals, rhythm guitar, & keyboards; Travis McKenzie on lead guitars, Nick Robertson on drums; and Adam York on bass. From High Dive Records website: “The brainchild of singer/ songwriter, Jocelyn Olivia Nixon acts to guide the listener thru a self-actualized Mono-myth of forging identity thru Bizarre arcane cosmic poetry coupled with the wordplay of a wry smile and eccentric wit. Drummer Nick Robertson charges the group forward with a fiery fueled obsidian backbeat. Adam York delivers pulsing bass lines that the compliment the songs and his partner in the rhythm section. Rounding out the band is Guitarist Travis McKenzie who generously spins a holographic spectrum of color that lift the catchy Brit pop melodies that effortlessly dance about the rapidly changing landscapes of New York Garage Rock and 60s/70s folk music. Beware The Creepy Jingles, their siren call is coming from inside the house.”]

(11.) Scott Hrabko & The Rabbits – Smash Hits From A Parallel Universe (EP) / Scott Hrabko / February 14, 2019
[Scott Hrabko on lead vocals, backing vocals, acoustic 6 and 12 string guitar, electric guitar, keyboards, & percussion; Jason Beers on bass guitar; Tim Higgins on drums, Marco Pascolini on junior electric guitar. Scott calls this release: 4 songs for the new age of anxiety. Scott Hrako & The Rabbits released “Summer” in 2017, and “Biscuits and Gravity” in 2015. Scott Hrabko’s 2013 critically acclaimed solo release, “Gone Places” was said to be 30 years in the making. Singer-songwriter Scott Hrabko has played with KC’s oldest garage band The Original Sinners, as well as various incarnations of the 1980s bands: The Splinters, and The Andersons. In the early 1990s Scott performed as a solo artist in coffee houses with Iris Dement and Howard Eisberg.]

(12.) Cate Le Bon – Reward / Mexican Summer / May 24, 2019
[From the upcoming 5th solo album from Cate Le Bon who was born Cate Timothy on March 4, 1983. She is a musician and producer. She sings in both English and Welsh. She has released four solo albums, three EPs and a number of singles. Le Bon has toured with artists such as St. Vincent, Perfume Genius and John Grant. In 2018, she joined John Cale on stage at The Barbican with the London Contemporary Orchestra. Le Bon was born in Penboyr, Carmarthenshire, Wales, and first gained public attention when she supported Gruff Rhys (of the Super Furry Animals) on his 2007 solo UK tour. She appeared as a guest vocalist on Neon Neon’s 2008 single “I Lust U” from their album Stainless Style. Under her original name she provided backing vocals on Richard James’s debut solo album The Seven Sleepers Den in 2006. She also appeared on his second solo album, We Went Riding, from 2010. Her first official release was a Welsh language EP, Edrych yn Llygaid Ceffyl Benthyg (“Looking in the Eyes of a Borrowed Horse”, similar to the English expression “to look a gift horse in the mouth”), on Peski Records in 2008. She also self-released the double A-side debut single “No One Can Drag Me Down” / “Disappear” (described by Gruff Rhys as “Bobbie Gentry and Nico fight over a Casio keyboard; melody wins!”) on her website. Le Bon worked alongside Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci’s Megan Childs, who contributed violin, and Super Furry Animals and Thrills collaborator John Thomas, who added pedal steel. Her debut album, Me Oh My was released in 2009, followed by Cyrk and the Cyrk II EP in 2012. In January 2013, Le Bon moved to L A to further her career in the US. Her third album, Mug Museum, was released November 2013. It was produced by Noah Georgeson and Josiah Steinbrick in Los Angeles, and featured Stephen Black (bass) & Huw Evans (guitar). She provided guest vocals on the track “Slow Train” from Kevin Morby’s debut album Harlem River. In 2015, Le Bon collaborated with Tim Presley as DRINKS and released the album Hermits on Holiday in August 2015. DRINKS released their second album Hippo Lite in April 2018. Le Bon released her fourth studio album, Crab Day, on April 15, 2016 on Drag City to generally favorable reviews. The album was produced by Josiah Steinbrick and Noah Georgeson, and again featured Stephen Black (bass) & Huw Evans (guitar), w/ Stella Mozgawa (drums). She noted how the collaboration with Presley had made her realise “that I make music because I love to, not because I have to”. On tour she was supported by Black and Evans and on occasion by Steinbrick and Josh Klinghoffer, a five-piece that also performs instrument improvisations under the name BANANA. In January 2017, Le Bon released the four-track EP Rock Pool via Drag City. It includes her version of the track “I Just Want to Be Good” featuring Perfume Genius, which she wrote for Sweet Baboo’s 2015 album The Boombox Ballads. In the same month Leaving Records released Live by BANANA, recorded live during the band’s 2016 tour and Le Bon remixed Eleanor Friedberger’s ‘Are We Good?’ In 2018, Le Bon signed with Brooklyn based record label Mexican Summer (Ariel Pink, Jessica Pratt, Connan Mockasin).]

(13.) Samantha Fish – Kill or Be Kind / Rounder Records – Concord Music / Sept. 20, 2019
[Samantha Fish, born January 30, 1989, is an American blues singer-songwriter and guitarist. Samantha Fish grew up in Kansas City, Missouri. Fish started out playing drums, but when she was 15 she switched to the guitar. Fish frequently went to the Knuckleheads Saloon to hear touring Blues artists. After turning 18, she often joined in with the singers and bands who were performing at Knuckleheads. In 2009, Fish recorded and produced Live Bait. The live album attracted the attention of a talent company, who recommended her to Ruf Records. Ruf Records put together a record with Fish and two other female blues artists, Cassie Taylor and Dani Wilde, titled Girls with Guitars. The three guitarists then toured on the Ruf Records 2011 Blues Caravan in the U.S. and Europe. Fish continued touring with the Samantha Fish Band, featuring “Go-Go Ray” Pollard on drums and Chris Alexander on bass, playing in Europe and the United States. In 2011, Fish recorded Runaway with the help of her mentor Mike Zito. The album won the 2012 Blues Music Award for Best New Artist. Fish appeared on Devon Allman’s 2013 album Turquoise in a duet covering the Tom Petty/Stevie Nicks’ song “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around”. During the summer of 2013, Fish was called up on stage to play with a skeptical Buddy Guy who was so impressed with her playing on the guitar, he declared with a beaming smile to his audience, “When this kind of shit happens, I’ll play all night!” In 2013, Fish released her second major studio album, Black Wind Howlin’, featuring Mike Zito on guitar, Yonrico Scott on drums, Johnny Sansome on harmonica, and Paul Thorn, vocal duet on one track. The album was recorded in Dockside Studios, in Maurice, Louisiana. Mike Zito’s bandmates from his group Royal Southern Brotherhood, Yonrico Scott and Charlie Wooton, were brought in to assist in the session recordings. Also in 2013, Fish appeared on The Healers Live at Knuckleheads Saloon, producing a CD/DVD collaboration with Jimmy Hall, Reese Wynans, Kate Moss, and Danielle and Kris Schnebelen (sister and brother, formerly of the band Trampled Under Foot). Proceeds benefit the Blue Star Connection. The Healers occasionally perform together as their schedule permits. Fish’s third studio album, Wild Heart was released on July 10, 2015. The new album is more roots rock than her earlier blues rock. Fish wrote five songs on the record. She co-wrote five other songs with Jim McCormick in Nashville, Tennessee. Luther Dickinson produced the album, as well as played various stringed instruments (guitar, bass, mandolin, lap steel) to flesh out the sound. The album was recorded in four studios, Royal Studios and Ardent Studios in Memphis, Tennessee, Zebra Ranch in Coldwater, Mississippi, and Blade Studios in Shreveport, Louisiana. Other musicians on the record are Brady Blade (drums), Lightnin’ Malcolm (guitar), Shardé Thomas (drums), Dominic Davis (bass), Shontelle Norman-Beatty (background vocals), and Risse Norman (background vocals). Fish released her fourth solo album, Chills & Fever on March 17, 2017. The album was recorded in Detroit and was recorded with members of the band The Detroit Cobras. Bobby Harlow produced the album. Belle of the West followed in December 2017. Fish released her sixth solo album, Kill or Be Kind, on September 20, 2019, on her new label, Rounder Records. In December Samantha Fish is on a Holiday Tour promoting her new Christmas Album.]

(14.) The Get Up Kids – Problems / Polyvinyl Record Co / May 10, 2019
[KC / Lawrence KS based band with Matt Pryor on vocals & guitars, Jim Suptic on guitar, Rob Pope on bass, James Dewees on keyboards, Ryan Pope on drums. Formed in 1995, the band was a major player in the mid-1990s emo scene, otherwise known as the “second wave” of emo music. As they gained prominence, they began touring with bands such as Green Day and Weezer before becoming headliners themselves, eventually embarking on international tours of Japan and Europe. The Get Up Kids Members Rob Pope is also in the band Spoon; Jim Suptic is in the bands: Blackpool Lights, and Radar State; James Dewees is in the band Reggie and the Full Effect; and Matt Pryor performs often as a solo artists, and in the bands: Radar State, and The New Amsterdams. On their new album Problems—their first full-length in eight years—The Get Up Kids examine everything from life-changing loss to loneliness to the inevitable anxiety of existing in 2019. But by sustaining the essence of their sound—anthemic choruses with sing-along-ready melodies—the band highlights those troubles as a shared experience, giving way to an unbreakable solidarity. And at the heart of Problems is an invaluable element the band’s embodied since their 1997 debut Four Minute Mile: a penetrating lyricism that’s both acutely introspective and indelibly resonant. // The follow-up to 2018’s Kicker EP, Problems came to life in Bridgeport, Connecticut, with the band holing up together for a three-week span. Working with Grammy Award-winning producer Peter Katis, The Get Up Kids took a characteristically riff-driven yet decidedly pop-minded approach to song structure, while also allowing themselves a new sense of creative freedom. “At one point with this band, if we came up with something that felt too much like when we first started out, we would’ve said, ‘No, we can’t do that anymore,’” says Pryor. “These days we’ve learned how to write without roadblocking the ideas that come naturally to us.” // Kicking off with lead single “Satellite,” Problems opens on a stark arrangement of acoustic guitar and stripped-bare vocals, then bursts into brightly crashing rhythms and lyrics revealing the time-bending quality of The Get Up Kids’ songwriting. “I started writing ‘Satellite’ about my son who’s 14 and a total introvert—not antisocial, he just genuinely likes to keep to himself,” says Pryor. “But then somewhere down the line I started singing about myself—about how even when you’re playing a show to a room full of people, I can still feel anxious and isolated.” // Throughout Problems, The Get Up Kids again prove themselves attuned to the nuance of highly specific emotions, and ultimately validate the messiest and most nebulous of feelings. On the joyfully swinging, piano-heavy “The Problem Is Me,” for instance, the band explores the notion of embracing your own romantic dysfunction, while “Salina” captures a small moment of melancholy with sweeping intensity and sprawling guitar work. Later, on “Your Ghost Is Gone,” The Get Up Kids deliver a gently devastating piano ballad sparked from an instrumental piece Dewees wrote soon after his mother’s death. // Through the years, The Get Up Kids have purposely pushed themselves toward previously unexplored songwriting material. “I’m 41 now, I could never write a song like when I was 19—all those ‘I miss my girlfriend’ kind of songs,” Suptic says. “It’s always important to us to write about wherever we are right now.” As shown on Problems, the resulting output both preserves the beloved spirit of The Get Up Kids and creates an entirely new context for their music. “A big part of the reason why we started writing new songs in the first place is that we have things we want to say about this moment in time,” says Pryor. “We’re still so connected to our past and where this all came from—it’s definitely a celebration of the fact that we still get to do this.” ]

(15.) Black Belt Eagle Scout – At the Party With My Brown Friends / Saddle Creek / August 23, 2019
[Released in September of 2018, Mother of My Children was the debut album from Black Belt Eagle Scout, the recording project of Katherine Paul. Heralded as a favorite new musician of 2018 by the likes of NPR Music, Stereogum, and Paste, the album was also named as a “Best Rock Album of 2018” by Pitchfork, and garnered further end-of-year praise from FADER, Under The Radar and more. // Arriving just a year after that debut record, At the Party With My Brown Friends is a brand new full-length recording from Black Belt Eagle Scout. Where that first record was a snapshot of loss and landscape and of KP’s standing as a radical indigenous queer feminist, this new chapter finds its power in love, desire and friendship. // At the Party With My Brown Friends is a profound and understated forward step. The squalling guitar anthems that shaped its predecessor are replaced by delicate vocals and soft keys, sentiments spoken and unspoken, presenting something shadowy and unsettling; a stirring of the waters. // The end result presents a captivating about-face that redefines KP’s beautifully singular artistic vision. At the Party With My Brown Friends is introduced in greater detail here via a new statement by the artist. // ARTIST’S STATEMENT: My name is Katherine Paul and I am Black Belt Eagle Scout. // I grew up on the Swinomish Indian Reservation in NW Washington state, learning to play piano, guitar and drums in my adolescent years. The very first form of music that I can remember experiencing was the sound of my dad singing native chants to coo me to sleep as a baby. I grew up around powwows and the songs my grandfather and grandmother sang with my family in their drum group. This is what shapes how I create music: with passion and from the heart. // After the release of Mother of My Children, I felt awake and desperately wanted to put new music out into the world. I had no real intent behind At the Party With My Brown Friends except creating songs around what was going on in my life. In the past few years, the reciprocal love I experienced within friendships is what has been keeping me going. A lot of what is in this album deals with love, desire and friendship. // The lead single, “At the Party,” starts off with a quintessential BBES guitar lick, heading into booming and abundant drums and vocals. The lines ‘How is it real? We will always sing’ came out of me one evening when I was crafting the song in my bedroom. Within my conscious self, there is always a sense of questioning the legitimacy of the world when you grow up on an Indian reservation. We are all at the party (the world), trying to navigate ourselves within a good or bad situation. I happen to be at the party with my brown friends- Indigenous, Black, POC who always have my back while we walk throughout this event called life. // I started writing “My Heart Dreams” the summer after I initially put out MOMC, writing the guitar chords in a friend’s apartment on Ohlone land. I had been in a transitional part of my life, leaving one love and wanting to find another so much so that I felt like my heart was dreaming about it along with my brain at night. I have an obsession with dreams, mainly because I cannot remember most of mine and often times that leaves me frustrated not knowing that part of myself. I would wake up and be overcome with anxiety about not knowing what had gone down in my brain so much so that I started feeling like my heart dreamt more than my mind, thus becoming the line, my heart dreams. // I wrote “Going To The Beach With Haley” one day when I was out on a coastal trip with my friend Haley Heynderickx. We loaded up her car with our blankets and instruments and drove straight to a beach where we sat and listened to the waves and young families with their babies on the beach. I had brought my mini casio keyboard that had an array of beats I used when writing songs. The beat that’s on the song just stuck there along with the main guitar part. Initially written on an old acoustic guitar my mom bought me, the song really transformed in the studio where I added drums and other melodies to create the song. // Throughout the course of my writing and playing around this record, most of these songs deal with relationships I have either with loved ones or friends. I think it low key has to do with my anthropology degree, but also the fact that writing and playing guitar in my bedroom just makes everything feel better for me. For the longest time, I wanted to convey my feelings around coming out to my family. It had been a good experience for me and while I know it is not always that way when kids decide to tell their family, I think that we can open our hearts more for that. I would watch youtube videos of moms being proud of their kids surrounding their sexuality and gender identity and I really wanted to raise my voice to say, ‘my family too!’ What started with trying to sound so literal in this song ended up turning into a song about how much I love my mom and how our connection is eternal. “You’re Me and I’m You” is about being one with your mother, since we all were a part of their bodies at one point. It’s me trying to explore who she is and who I am with my love for people.]

(16.) Short Round Stringband – Ain’t No Part of Nothin’ / Short Round Stringband / July 19, 2019
[On April 24, 2019 Wednesday MidDay Medley was the first to play the debut single from this new collection of songs written by Bill Monroe and performed by this new ensemble of veteran musicians. The debut album from the pan-Missouri band with a refreshing approach to old time music, Short Round Stringband is the coming together of two musical couples and a bassist with Kansas roots. The band members are Kelly Wells and Ryan Spearman (The Aching Hearts, St. Louis), Betse Ellis and Clarke Wyatt (Betse & Clarke, Kansas City), and Chris DeVictor (Konza Swamp and more). With deep connections to old-time, country and Ozark tunes and songs, Short Round Stringband takes you on a moving journey through the sounds and stories of the American experience.]

(17.) The Highwomen – The Highwomen / Elektra / September 6, 2019
[The Highwomen is a country music group composed of Brandi Carlile, Natalie Hemby, Maren Morris, and Amanda Shires, formed in 2019. The group’s self-titled debut album was released on September 6, 2019, by Elektra Records and was produced by Dave Cobb. In 2016, when Shires was finishing her record, My Piece of Land, in music producer Dave Cobb’s studio, Shires had an idea to create a girl country supergroup in homage to the legendary Highwaymen country supergroup (consisting of Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson). At the same time, the lack of representation of women artists on country music radio and at country music festivals had been publicly discussed by many, influenced by the Me Too movement and journalists like Marissa Moss. While on tour in her van, while listening to country radio, Shires kept a running list of artists and noticed that there were few women. When she called to request they play more women artists, she was directed to a Facebook page lottery system. Cobb recommended Shires call Carlile, whom she didn’t know. Carlile thought it would be fun, and would be an interesting creative project. The Highwomen project was widely hinted at by Carlile, Morris and Shires before it was officially announced on April 6, 2019. With the name paying homage to the legendary Highwaymen country supergroup, the Highwomen were originally intended to leave the fourth spot in their line-up vacant to allow other female collaborators to join them, with Chely Wright, Courtney Marie Andrews, Margo Price, Janelle Monae and Sheryl Crow mentioned as potential guests. The band, who jokingly refer to the collaboration as a pirate ship experience, said that they see the project as an incubator project that highlights mentorship and support of fellow women artists. Maren hadn’t worked with Cobb before, and remarked on how much she liked tracking live. The band recorded live vocals, live band, harmonies in unison, where the musicians were recording together live in an organic environment at historic RCA Studio A, which Cobb now owns. As part of the experience, some of the members got matching Highwomen tattoos. The group made their live debut on April 1, 2019 at Loretta Lynn’s 87th birthday concert held at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. There, Natalie Hemby was officially revealed as the final member and the quartet performed “It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels”. Their debut single, “Redesigning Women”, and its associated music video featuring female artists including Tanya Tucker, Cam, Lauren Alaina, Cassadee Pope and Wynonna Judd was released on 19 July 2019, with their self-titled debut album (set for release on September 6) becoming available for pre-order on the same day. The song was promoted by country singer Dierks Bentley who released a comedic reading of the lyrics to his YouTube Channel which received praise from Carlile and Morris. Their second single, “Crowded Table”, written by band member Hemby and Lori McKenna, was released on July 26, 2019. In July 2019, the Highwomen performed their first ever full live set at the 60th annual Newport Folk Festival, previewing songs from their upcoming album including “If She Ever Leaves Me”, written by Shires, her husband Jason Isbell and Chris Thompkins. With Carlile on lead vocals, Isbell described it as “the first gay country song” which elicited applause from the audience. Other songs performed included “My Only Child”, an ode to “suburban moms” performed by Hemby who wrote the track with Shires and Miranda Lambert, “Loose Change”, a nod to 70s country written by Morris, Daniel Layus of Augustana, and Maggie Chapman, featuring Morris on lead vocals and “Cocktail and a Song” which was written solely by Shires in honor of her father. Carlile later invited the rest of the Highwomen to join her during her headlining set where, as they originally intended, the group performed alongside other female artists including Amy Ray, Courtney Marie Andrews, Dolly Parton, Jade Bird, Judy Collins, Linda Perry, Lucy Dacus, Our Native Daughters, Sheryl Crow, The First Ladies of Bluegrass, and Yola Carter. Shires said the plan was always to debut their music at Newport with Dolly Parton. The band wore custom suits by Manuel. Their cover of “The Chain” by Fleetwood Mac from the soundtrack of the movie The Kitchen debuted during the film’s first trailer and was officially released on August 2, 2019. The title track of their self-titled debut album was released on August 13, 2019. Written by Carlile and Shires with Jimmy Webb, the original writer of “Highwayman”, the track that originally inspired the Highwomen’s formation, it tells the story of various women throughout history and features guest vocals from British country soul singer Yola Carter and backing vocals from Sheryl Crow. The song is a classic answer song. The band recorded 15 songs, but 12 tracks made the album. Songwriters included the Jimmy Webb, Rodney Clawson, Maggie Chapman, Lori McKenna, Jason Isbell, Peter Levin, Miranda Lambert, Ray LaMontagne, among others. Many songs flip gender roles, with additions of characters like refugee, preacher, Freedom Rider, and a healer, compared to the characters drawn by the Highwaymen songs.]

(18.) Helado Negro – This Is How You Smile / RVNG Intl. / March 8, 2019
[6th album from Roberto Carlos Lange, better known by his stage name Helado Negro, is an American musician. He was formerly signed to Asthmatic Kitty Records from 2009 to 2016. Helado is now currently signed to and released his latest album through RVNG Intl., a Brooklyn-based music institution. Helado grew up in Miami, Florida where he spent his teenage years searching for his identity in the cultural melting pot of south Florida. He immersed himself in the hip-hop and electronic music scenes, where he learned to be an artist by playing out shows to small audiences. Helado released his first full-length album in 2009 titled Awe Owe. In 2010, Helado released an EP titled Pasajero. Helado released his second full-length album in 2011 titled Canta Lechuza. In 2012, Helado released the first of a three part EP, titled Island Universe Story – One. Helado released his third full-length album in 2013 titled Invisible Life. Helado released the second Island Universe Story EP in 2013. In 2014, Helado released his fourth full-length album titled Double Youth. The third EP in Helado’s three-part Island Universe Story series was released in 2014. In 2015, Helado released the single “Young, Latin and Proud” along with an animated-visual and lyric video. Lange describes the song as “It was as if I was singing my 6-year-old self a lullaby… It’s about feeling a sense of pride and self-confidence, understanding that you’re born into something and it’s alright to feel good about it. Stereotypes and contradictions are built into identity and I think those are a strong current in both Latino and black identity in the U.S. today.” In 2016, Helado released his fifth full-length album titled Private Energy.]

(19.) Dead Voices – Commoners / Dead Voices / February 4, 2019
[The follow up to their 2013 debut EP. Kansas City Super-Group, formed in September of 2010, by David Regnier on lead vocals, Jason Beers on bass, Matt Richey on drums, Michael Stover on lap steel and other instruments, and Marco Pascolini on guitar.]

(20.) The Sluts – Break Their Heart (EP) / The Sluts / February 12, 2019
[New 6 song EP from the Lawrence based band The Sluts formed by Ryan Wise & Kristoffer Dover in 2011. Produced recorded, mixed, and mastered by Joel Nanos at Element Recording and Mastering Studios, KCMO. The Sluts released their debut EP Virile on November 14, 2013. The released The Loser EP on July 8, 2014. They released their 11-song full length album The Sluts on June 17, 2015. The Sluts released their EP Only One on May 25, 2017. All were recorded at Element Recording. Info at]

(21.) Hipshot Killer – All This Time is Ours / Hipshot Killer / March 20, 2019
[KC based 3-piece power punk band formed in the fall of 2008. The current line up consists of: Mike Alexander (Revolvers, Architects, John Velge and The Prodigal Sons, The Starhaven Rounders), on guitar & vocals, Chris Wagner (100 Years War, Jackie Carrol, John Velge and The Prodigal Sons) on bass & vocals, legendary drummer Jon “Buddy” Paul, who plays in (The Big Iron, The Revolvers.) All This Time is Ours was Mastered at Weights and Measures studio by Duane Trower. All songs written by Mike Alexander. The band released their debut record Hipshot Killer, April 29, 2011. The band released their second album They Will Try To Kill Us All on January 16, 2016. It was number 7 in Wednesday MidDay Medley’s 116 Best Recordings of 2016. Hipshot Killer also released a single on Too Much Rock on October 21, 2016 . Mike Alexander has been a tireless organizer of the KC area punk scene and has helped to produce multiple years of the Center of the City Fest. Mike also helped to create the 8-song tribute recording, I’ll Repay You: A Benefit for John Fackler – featuring the songs of John Fackler and Jettison. More info at]

(22.) Deerhunter – Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared? / 4AD / Jan. 18, 2019
[8th studio album by the American indie rock band Deerhunter. The album was co-produced by singer-songwriter Cate Le Bon, Ben H. Allen (who had previously worked with the band on Halcyon Digest and Fading Frontier), Ben Etter (who worked as a studio assistant on Fading Frontier) and the band itself. The first single, “Death in Midsummer”, was released on October 30, 2018. The same day, a world tour in support of the album was announced, starting in November 4, 2018. The second single from the album, “Element”, was released on December 6, 2018. The album leaked on December 12, 2018. Deerhunter is an American rock band from Atlanta, Georgia, formed in 2001. The band consists of Bradford Cox (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Moses Archuleta (drums, electronics, sound treatments), Lockett Pundt (guitar, vocals, keyboards), Josh McKay (bass) and Javier Morales (keyboards, synthesizers, alto saxophone). Founded by Cox and Archuleta, Deerhunter’s first stable line-up included guitarist Colin Mee and bass guitarist Justin Bosworth.]

(23.) J.S. Ondara – Tales of America / Verve / February 1, 2019
[27 year old J.S. Ondara is a Kenyan singer-songwriter whose debut album, Tales of America, was released on February 15, 2019 via Verve Label Group. J.S. Ondara was born in August 1992 in Nairobi, Kenya. As a child, he wrote poems and stories as well as songs despite not having an instrument to play them on because his family couldn’t afford one. He was inspired by Radiohead, Nirvana, Death Cab For Cutie, Jeff Buckley, Pearl Jam, Guns N’ Roses, and Bob Dylan. He grew up listening to rock songs on his older sisters’ battery-powered radio. Having discovered The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan following a dispute with a friend over whether Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door was a Guns N’ Roses song, Ondara resolved to travel to the United States to pursue a career in music. In February 2013, after winning in the green card lottery, he moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota at the age of 20. He taught himself to play guitar and perform during open mic nights. Eventually, he decided to study music therapy in college, but dropped out of school to return to playing small shows at coffee houses after attending a concert. After moving to Minnesota, Ondara tried his hand at making music and performing in small venues. His big break came when Minneapolis radio station KCMP 89.3 The Current played one of his songs on air by pulling audio from his YouTube channel, where he had been uploading covers of his favorite songs. At the time, he was going by the name Jay Smart. Ondara’s debut album, Tales of America, was released in February 2019 by Verve Label Group. Despite only 11 tracks making the final tracklist, Ondara wrote more than 100 songs for the album, all based on an immigrant’s life in America. The album was produced by Mike Viola of the Candy Butchers. In support of the album, Ondara embarked on his first headlining tour in March 2019. After the release of the album, Ondara debuted on Billboard’s Emerging Artist chart at No. 37 in March 2019. The album also landed on the Billboard Heatseekers Album, Americana/Folk Album Sales, and Rock Album Sales charts. He was nominated for Best Emerging Act at the 2019 Americana Music Honors & Awards. Ondara cites Bob Dylan as his musical hero, which is why he chose to live in Minnesota and why he wears his signature fedora. He has toured with the Milk Carton Kids, Lindsey Buckingham and in 2019, he opened for select dates on tour with Neil Young.]

(24.) Mike McCoy’s Trompe-l’œil – Eyein’ Lies / Mike McCoy / July 19, 2019
[Formed in Austin, Texas in August 2015, members include: Andrew Duplantis, Jacob Schulze, Travis Garaffa, David Garrett, and Mike McCoy. Kansas native and Austin resident Mike McCoy is a man for all seasons. A gifted singer, composer, songwriter, social commentator and conceptual artist from the heartland, McCoy has been making music for more than 30 years, incorporating a whiplash array of styles and genres from country-roots to punk to performance art and power pop. All overlap in McCoy’s world. Mike founded the KC power-pop band Cher UK (Cargo/FistPuppet) & (Red Decibel/Columbia Records) in the mid 1990s and has fronted other quirky conceptual bands such as the Black Rabbits of Lawrence, Kansas, and two Austin critics’ darlings, the American People and the Service Industry. Mike is also a prolific solo artist . A religion studies and art-history graduate of TCU, fund-raising researcher at Yale, a carpenter/designer in Austin, an online “word contortionist” and a former museum administrator in KC, McCoy’s truest calling is the crafting of songs. He’s a hayseed intellectual-philosopher whose compositions strike the right balance of plaintive and high-brow, sardonic and humble. McCoy brings a singular, poet’s sensibility to the music equation. He writes about a wonderful waitress in a rundown town who has the power to make or break your stay (“if you treat her well, you might get what you want…”), about an immigrant woman whose dreams of America lead her to a lonesome life as a domestic (“feather duster I believe her, no one sees the way I see her…”), about American apathy and how winter is a submarine (“winter is a submarine — I lay inside and I no longer dream…”). In most of McCoy’s songs, there is something deeply wistful, despite the freighted narratives and their dizzying wordplay. He’s a serious guy and he writes about serious stuff. Yet in the lyrics and in the spaces between words and melody, you can almost hear that lone whistle blow in the dark of a heartlands night; you hear a style of writing that combines political commentary and snarky populism with an inextinguishable belief that somehow, with the right blend of gumption and fortitude, we humans might just pull off something good. He’s equal parts punk-rock-Americana — a strange brew of Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, John Mellencamp, Ramones and Burl Ives. But no matter in what incarnation you encounter Mike McCoy, you’ll find he’s driven by the same basic themes: ideas and ideals of humanity, principles and hopes, outrage and indignation, absurdism and dadaism, puns and poetry and parody, with a large dose of red-white-and-blue wishful thinking.]

(25.) Lomelda – M for Empathy / Double Double Whammy / March 1, 2019
[Lomelda is the stage name of musician Hannah Read. According to Read, Lomelda is a made up word that means “echo of the stars”. Hannah Read was raised in Silsbee, Texas. She began her music career playing in bands with her brother as well as her high school friends. Read’s first full-length album, Forever, was released in 2015. In 2017, Read released her second full-length album, Thx, with the independent record label Double Double Whammy. The album was co-produced with the assistance of Read’s brother, Tommy. It was primarily written over a few months while Read was sleeping in her car.]

(26.) Solange – When I Get Home / Columbia Records / March 1, 2019
[4th studio album from singer and songwriter Solange, and follow up to her breakthrough record, A Seat at the Table released on September 30, 2016,. Following the release of her second studio album Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams (2008), Knowles began work on her third studio album, during which she suffered a “breakdown” due to the amount of time and emotion she was putting into the recording process. While recording the album Knowles released an EP entitled True (2012) and launched her own record label named Saint Records. A Seat at the Table became Solange’s first number-one album on the Billboard 200.]

(27.) GAV7D – Thanks For Everything Punkfunkpolka / GAV7D / May 31, 2019
[Johnny Hamil on bass, Clarke Wyatt on keyboards, Mikal Shapiro on guitars & vocals, Kyle Dahlquist on accordions & theremins & vocals, Charles “Critter” Sims on drums, and Chad Meise on Hendrix inspired guitars. Written & arranged by Johnny Hamil. This is the 3rd release in the GAV7D series. The debut, “Thanks For Everything” was released June 21, 2015. The double album, “Thanks For Everything – Cartoonoirjazz” was released June 1, 2016. Johnny Hamil told us that he recently finished the mixing for 4th GAV7D “Thanks for Everything – exoticamiddleasternfreejazz,” to be released next year. Johnny said that it “reminded me that the outside listener doesn’t hear the whole project like I do, or the concert goer does.” He added “I really feel like it’s my major work of my lifetime, but even better, it tells the story of the KaC music community, which I’m so proud of.” KC based musician, composer, and teacher Johnny Hamil plays in the band Pamper The Madman. Johnny will be in the studio from Dec. 29 through Jan. 2 recording the new Pamper The Madman album. Johnny Hamil also plays bass for Mikal Shapiro, and Julia Othmer, and can be heard on the recordings of many KC and Lawrence based artists including Stephonne Singelton. Johnny Hamil collaborates with jazz combos, theatre productions, and is also known for his work with The Malachy Papers. As a teacher of the bass, Johnny Hamil was recently featured on Queer Eye on Netflix. Johnny is a founding member of Mr. Marco’s V7, a band that has been reinvented with each new release, and changed and evolved with different line-ups. Known for experimental, instrumental music, Johnny told us that the music he composed for the band came to him in his dreams. In 2011 the bassist noticed something revolutionary for his creative process when his dream compositions included lyrics for the first time This set him on a new path to create GAV7D, which is not Mr. Marco’s V7 proper, but members from throughout the long history of the the band. The concept was to collaborate a vocal version of the compositions with friends and then have various lineups of the V7 family interpret the material in different ways, CartoonNoirJazz, PunkFunkPolka, and FreeeExoticaMiddleEastern. GAV7D premiered at the Folk Alliance International. Chad Meise is a master of sound and the studio and stage producing and engineering records for Mr. Marco’s V7, Hearts of Darkness, Expassionate, Rex Hobart, MIke Dillon, The Gaslights, Atlantic Fadeout, and The Country Duo.]

(28.) Bon Iver – i,i / Jagjaguwar Records / August 9, 2019
[Bon Iver is an American indie folk band founded in 2006 by singer-songwriter Justin Vernon. Vernon released Bon Iver’s debut album, For Emma, Forever Ago, independently in July 2007. The majority of that album was recorded while Vernon spent three months isolated in a cabin in northwestern Wisconsin. The band later won in 2012 the Grammy awards for Best New Artist and Best Alternative Music Album for their album Bon Iver, Bon Iver. They released their third album 22, A Million to critical acclaim in 2016.]

(29.) FKA Twigs – MAGDALENE / Young Turks Recordings / November 8, 2019
[Tahliah Debrett Barnett was born on January 16, 1988. She is known professionally as FKA Twigs. She is a British singer and songwriter, raised in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire. She became a backup dancer after moving to South London when she was 17 years old. She made her musical debut with the extended plays EP1 (2012) and EP2 (2013). Her debut studio album, LP1, was released in August 2014 to critical acclaim, peaking at number 16 on the UK Albums Chart and number 30 on the US Billboard 200. It was later nominated for the 2014 Mercury Prize. She released the M3LL155X EP in 2015 to further critical praise, as well as her second studio album Magdalene four years later. Her work has been described as “genre-bending”, drawing on various genres including electronic music, trip hop, R&B, and avant-garde. Her work has been compared to the work of Tricky as well as Kate Bush, Janet Jackson, The xx, and Massive Attack.]

(30.) Mavis Staples – We Get By / Anti / May 10, 2019
[14th studio solo album from rhythm & blues and gospel singer, actress and civil rights activist, born in Chicago, Illinois on July 10, 1939. The album’s cover features the photograph “Outside Looking In” by Gordon Parks from his 1956 photo essay The Restraints: Open and Hidden. The album was produced and written by Ben Harper. Staples & Harper had previously collaborated on “Love and Trust”, a song from Staples’ 2016 album, Livin’ on a High Note. In a statement, Staples said, “These songs are delivering such a strong message. We truly need to make a change if we want this world to be better.” Mavis Staples has recorded and performed with her family’s band The Staple Singers. She began her career with her family group in 1950. Initially singing locally at churches, appearing on a weekly radio show, the Staples scored a hit in 1956 with “Uncloudy Day” for the Vee-Jay label. When Mavis graduated from what is now Paul Robeson High School in 1957, The Staple Singers took their music on the road. Led by family patriarch Roebuck “Pops” Staples on guitar and including the voices of Mavis and her siblings Cleotha, Yvonne, and Purvis, the Staples were called “God’s Greatest Hitmakers.” With Mavis’ voice and Pops’ songs, singing, and guitar playing, the Staples evolved from enormously popular gospel singers (with recordings on United and Riverside as well as Vee-Jay) to become the most spectacular and influential spirituality-based group in America. By the mid-1960s The Staple Singers, inspired by Pops’ close friendship with Martin Luther King, Jr., became the spiritual and musical voices of the civil rights movement. They covered contemporary pop hits with positive messages, including Bob Dylan’s “A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall” and a version of Stephen Stills’ “For What It’s Worth.” Staples was briefly married to Spencer Leak in 1964; they divorced when Staples would not end her music career to stay home. She has no children. In the 2015 documentary Mavis! she reveals that Bob Dylan once proposed to her, and she turned him down.]

(31.) The Sextet – Among Friends / ARC / September 15 , 2019
[The title of the band’s third release refers to the collaboration of nine other musicians & artists who joined the six members of The Sextet: Joe Tesoro on soprano sax, Max Levy on tenor sax, Trevor Turla on trombone, Forrest Fowler on guitar, Nik Douglas on drums, and Robert Castillo on bass, in the studio to create this new 15 track release. Engineered and Mixed by J Ashley Miller. Produced by J Ashley Miller, Robert Castillo, & The Sextet. Mastered by Duane Trower @ Weights and Measures Soundlab. Recorded Jan. 17,18, & Feb. 1, 2019 @ The Infoaming Vertex. Cover Image: “Circle and Square” by Wassily Kandinsky 1943]

(32.) Yes You Are – Here’s To The Great Unknowns / Yes You Are / November 15, 2019
[Kianna Alarid on vocals, Jared White on rhythm guitar, Jacob Temeyer on guitars & keyboards, and Willie Jordan on bass. “We play black pop.” says Kianna Alarid, Yes You Are’s intense front woman, “It implies that there might be shadows lurking, even in the shiny places.” Listening to their upcoming album, it IS essentially pop, but they redefine the genre with each and every song. From gospel choirs to guitar-heavy rock to synth-covered dance rhythms, the mainstay (and mainstream friendly) sing-along hooks are what binds all of their work together. Alarid cut her teeth in the critically-acclaimed indie band Tilly and the Wall, touring through the mid to late aughts with bands such as She and Him, Bright Eyes, Rilo Kiley, Of Montreal and CSS, playing venues around the world and hitting major festivals like Coachella, Japan’s Summersonic, Iceland Airwaves, Reading, Leeds, Scotland’s T In The Park and Australia’s Splendor In The Grass as well as performing on Late Night with David Letterman and Sesame Street. You’ve probably already heard Yes You Are, as their first single debuted on Pepsi’s Superbowl 51 commercial, as has played over 15,000 times since, all over the world. The song was also featured in the hit movie Bad Moms, as well as FX’s Tyrant and MTV’s Scream. Yes You Are has shared the stage with the likes of K. Flay, Moon Taxi, Marion Hill, Lucius and Neon Trees.]

(33.) Other Americans – OA2 (EP) / AWAL Records / October 19, 2019
[New EP follow up to the band’s debut self-titled EP from June 29, 2018. Julie Berndsen on lead vocals, Adam Phillips on drums, Brandon Phillips on guitar, Michelle Bacon on bass. Produced by Brandon Phillips. Engineered by Joel Nanos. Recorded at Element Recording Studios in Kansas City. All remixes by Mensa Deathsquad. Hailing from the musical hotbeds of Kansas City, MO, and Lawrence, KS, the electro-alternative OTHER AMERICANS are comprised of members of such regional luminaries as The Architects, Latenight Callers, The Philistines, Radar State and Brandon Phillips and The Condition. Other Americans is a virtual Midwestern supergroup. The cohorts first crossed paths in when a mutual friend and matchmaker introduced Brandon Phillips to vocalist Julie Berndsen “We were all looking for something new to do musically, recalls Brandon. “The way I remember it, a mutual friend (KC music producer Joel Nanos) told me that Julie was looking to start something new and I sent her a note about it. We had tacos to see if we liked each other.”]

(34.) Violet and The Undercurrents – The Captain / Violet Vonder Haar / March 1, 2019
[Columbia, Missouri based 4-piece band made up of Violet Vonder Haar on lead vocals & guitar; Linda Bott on bass guitar; Phylshawn Johnson on drums, and Lizzy Weiland on lead guitar. The quartet is anchored by the intrepid songwriting of Violet Vonder Haar and enriched by the creative energy of her musical counterparts. Raised in a small town at the edge of the Missouri River and nurtured by a thriving folk music-centered community, Vonder Haar started honing her craft as a songwriter, performer and vocalist at an early age. She was inspired by her father, a riverboat captain who introduced her to the music of folk legends and encouraged her journey as an artist. More information at:]

(35.) Our Native Daughters (Rhiannon Giddens, Leyla McCalla, Amythyst Kiah & Allison Russell) – Songs of Our Native Daughters / Smithsonian Folkways Recordings / February 22, 2019
[Our native Daughters is: Rhiannon Giddens, Leyla McCalla, Amythyst Kiah & Allison Russell (of Birds of Chicago). This song features all of their voices. Songs of Our Native Daughters’ gathers together kindred musicians in song and sisterhood to communicate with their forebears. Drawing on and reclaiming early minstrelsy and banjo music, these musicians reclaim, recast, and spotlight the often unheard and untold history of their ancestors, whose stories remain vital and alive today. The material on ‘Songs of Our Native Daughters’ — written and sung in various combinations — is inspired by New World slave narratives, discrimination and how it has shaped our American experience, as well as musicians such as Haitian troubadour Althiery Dorval and Mississippi Hill Country string player Sid Hemphill, and more. Rhiannon Giddens is the co-founder of the Grammy Award-winning string band Carolina Chocolate Drops, was awarded a 2017 MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and won the 2016 Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Bluegrass and Banjo. She has performed for President Barack Obama, appeared on The Late Show, Austin City Limits, CBS Sunday Morning, and has played a recurring role on the television drama Nashville in the role of Hallie Jordan, a young social worker with “the voice of an angel.” For her project with Our Native Daughters, Giddens brought together three other black female roots artists. “Gathering a group of fellow black female artists who had and have a lot to say, made it both highly collaborative and deeply personal to me,” she explains. “It felt like there were things we had been waiting to say our whole lives in our art; and to be able to say them in the presence of our sisters-in-song was sweet, indeed.” Their debut recording, Songs of Our Native Daughters, is a stunning thirteen-track album. Produced by Rhiannon Giddens and Dirk Powell. Engineered and mixed by Dirk Powell. Recorded at Cypress House Studio, Breaux Bridge, LA. Mastered by Emily Lazar at The Lodge NY. Assisted by Chris Allgood. Annotated by Rhiannon Giddens, Amythyst Kiah, Leyla McCalla, Allison Russell, and Dirk Powell.]

(36.) Hadiza. – Shadow Weight / Hadiza. / November 22, 2019
[Hadiza released her Ep “Gone” on December 29, 2018 with Madi Mclaughlin on bass & guitar, JL Bolinger on drums, and Hadiza Sa-Aadu on keyboards & vocals. Recording & Engineering: JL Bolinger & Madi Mclaughlin. Mixing & Mastering: Madi Mclaughlin. Hadiza. is a singer-songwriter who is based in Kansas City. Previously based in her hometown of Iowa City, she has spent the past year slowly but surely carving out her place in the Kansas City scene both as a solo performer (as Hadiza.) and as lead vocalist and songwriter of experimental electronic group Collidescope. Blessed to have had parents who are very much NOT students of music, but recognized the importance of music education, Hadiza spent her childhood and adolescence in part as a student of piano. Vocally, Hadiza takes her cues from American artists including Fiona Apple, Tracey Chapman, and Billie Holiday and African artists including Angelique Kidjo,. Her sound/genre is best described as an eclectic blend of blues, soul, folk, jazz and classical. Her songwriting is a process of release and acceptance of life events navigating an often brutal bleak and harsh world and is a form of therapy. If you don’t relate to the content, you just don’t relate. Oh well. The most amazing experience however is when a stranger in the audience connects with a song in their own way and is courageous enough to share that with her. Aside from the therapeutic aspect of creating music, this is why she continues to write and perform.]

(37.) Florist – Emily Alone / Double Double Whammy / July 26, 2019
[Florist is an American indie pop band from Brooklyn, New Yorkformed in 2013 with the release of a six-track EP titled We Have Been This Way Forever. Florist recorded another six-song EP, titled 6 days of songs, in May 2014, after lead vocalist Emily Sprague was severely injured in a hit-and-run while riding her bicycle. In October 2015, Florist released another EP titled Holdly on Double Double Whammy. Also in 2015, the band was listed on Stereogum’s “50 Best New Bands Of 2015” list. The band was also featured as one of Stereogum’s “Band To Watch” in 2015. In January 2016, Florist released their debut studio album titled The Birds Outside Sang on Double Double Whammy. The album was listed at number 34 on Noisey’s “100 Best Albums of 2016” list. Band members include: Emily Sprague, Rick Spataro, Jonnie Baker, and Felix Walworth. Sprague is an avid modular synthesizer collector and has made a number of YouTube videos showcasing her equipment. She self-released her debut solo album Water Memory, an ambient album composed with these instruments, in December 2017 with a follow-up album “Mount Vision” released in September 2018. In 2019, Beyonce used an instrumental portion of Florist track “Thank You” from their 2016 release The Birds Outside Sang in her Netflix concert movie Homecoming. Florist’s latest album, Emily Alone, was released was granted “Best New Music” by Pitchfork.]

(38.) LK Ultra – Demos For Bengal (EP) / LK Ultra / March 19, 2019
[Lawrence, Kansas based 4-piece indigenous-fronted, queer music, straight from the birthplace of emo. Formed by Lily Pryor, Inez Robinson, Aoife Conway, and August Hyde. Their EP release was mixed and recorded by Mitchell Hewlett in The Coop.]

(39.) Radkey – No Strange Cats…P.A.W./ The Century Family / February 22, 2019
[This new 7 song EP is sessetially a collection of the band’s most recent singles. It comes after the January 11, 2019 release of No Strange cats…Spiders – EP a 6 song EP of several new songs mixed with several singles from late 2018. Isaiah, Dee, and Solomon Radke of the critically acclaimed rock trio Radkey joined us live in our 90.1 FM studios on September 5, 2018 to talk about their performance at recordBar with Quixotic Performers, as headliners for the 14th Annual Crossroads Music Fest. Radkey was formed in 2010 in St. Joseph, where the brothers were raised. The family moved to Kansas City several years ago. The band has released two full-length recordings — “Dark Black Makeup” in 2015 and “Delicious Rock Noise” in 2016 — plus multiple EPs and singles, and recently were part of a MasterCard advertising campaign on digital billboards in NYC along with a national televison commercial that aired during the Grammy Awards that brought the band to the attention of Jack White who asked the band to tour with him. After Crossroads Music Fest the band went back on the road playing shows with The Damned throughout the United States. In December they went back into the studio to record songs for this release with producer Bill Stevenson of the California punk rock group Descendents. In early 2019 they played shows in Amsterdam and Stockholm. Last year the nad released “Basement” , “St. Elwood” “Rock & Roll Homeschool” as well as several other singles.]

(40.) Kill Vargas – Laugh It Off / Kill Vargas / April 2, 2019
[Wichita, Kansas based bandwith Logan Bush on drums, Austin Engler on bass, Griffin Bush on guitar & vocals, and Trent Gaddie on guitar]

(41.) Nan Turner – For Champs and Losers, Version 2 (EP) / Nan Turner / July 12, 2019
[All songs by Nan Turner. Recorded, Mixed, and Co-Produced at Winky World in Kansas City, by Chase Horseman. Mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side Music, New Windsor, NY. Ian Dobyns plays drums and Chase Horseman plays bass. Nan Turner is one half of the critically acclaimed band Schwervon! Nan has been called the “Lucy Ricardo of Indie Rock.” She also performs as Nan & The One Night Stands. Nan wrote on Facebook about her new EP: “This whole thing started out as an experiment, but I have to say I’m proud as hell with how it turned out. I was just going to record one or maybe two songs. HA HA Welcome to my FIVE SONGER!!! Some songs were written out of heartbreak and some just made me laugh. Just doing this was transformative…stuff was moving around, it was cathartic. I allowed myself to “write bad songs”. I highly recommend doing that because there’s bound to be a gold nugget somewhere in the bunch if you give yourself permission. Me and my guitar got reacquainted. We were “dancing in the dark.” I’ve never quoted Bruce Springsteen before,. but also I didn’t know I was going to record this EP, so you know. I’m rolling with shit. I had the luxury of working with Chase Horseman every week or two…giving myself ample time to add/rework stuff. I took the slow road and enjoyed the process. Chase has great ears and is uber talented in his own right. He & Ian Dobyns (Dreamgirl, Chase The Horseman) were my rhythm section on a few of these tracks.” More Info at:]

(42.) Michael Kiwanuka – KIWANUKA / Interscope Records / November 1, 2019
[Michael Samuel Kiwanuka (born 3 May 1987) is an English indie and folk rock singer-songwriter and record producer who is signed with Polydor Records. His 2012 debut album Home Again went gold in the United Kingdom and his second album, Love & Hate, debuted in 2016 at number one. He has been nominated for numerous honors, including the Brit Awards, MTV Europe Music Awards, Mercury Prize, BBC Music Awards. In January 2012, he won the BBC’s Sound of 2012. Born and raised in Muswell Hill, London, Kiwanuka is the son of Ugandan parents who escaped the Amin regime. He attended Fortismere School, leaving there in 2005 after completing his A-Levels. He went on to study at the School of Media, Arts and Design at the University of Westminster. Kiwanuka worked as a session guitarist, playing with Chipmunk and Bashy before working as a solo artist. His first proper gig was at The Oxford in Kentish Town at age 22. He came to the attention of Communion Records, which released his first two EPs, including his debut Tell Me A Tale on 13 June 2011. Kiwanuka supported Adele on her Adele Live 2011 tour, as well at her iTunes Festival 2011 gig, and played at the 2011 Hard Rock Calling. In 2011, he signed a deal with Polydor Records. He was included in the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll and was named as the winner on 6 January 2012. In June 2012, he was illustrated in a BBC article regarding Spain vis-à-vis Uganda during the Eurozone crisis; his putative counterpart was actress Penélope Cruz. Kiwanuka released his debut studio album, Home Again, in 2012 to positive reviews from critics. The album peaked at number 4 in the UK and, as of 2012, has sold over 70,000 copies in the UK. In 2016, Kiwanuka released his follow-up to Home Again, Love & Hate. The album was a critical and commercial success, reaching a peak at number 1 on the UK albums chart. The album was produced by Danger Mouse and spawned several singles. The HiPipo Music Awards honoured Kiwanuka with the Best Global Act award for his Love & Hate album success and musical accomplishments since his 2012 debut album Home Again. Kiwanuka has acknowledged influences from musicians such as Jimi Hendrix, Bill Withers, Otis Redding,Jack Johnson, Pops Staples, The Band, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Eric Bibb, Tommy Sims, Wham!, Richie Havens and Funkadelic. He’s played with James Gadson, drummer for Bill Withers.]

(43.) Cass McCombs – Tip of the Sphere / Anti / February 8, 2019
[Produced by Cass McCombs & Dan Horne. Engineered by Sam Griffin Owens. Mixed by Dan Horne. Mastered by Heba Kadry. Vinyl cut by Carl Rowatti. Recorded at Figure 8 Studios, Brooklyn NY. Additional engineering on The Great Pixley Train Robbery by Jason Quever. All songs Cass McCombs (BMI)Cass McCombs was born 1977 in Concord, California) is an American musician, best known for blending genres such as rock, folk, psychedelic, punk, and alt country, he has played in numerous bands in the Bay Area and Pacific Northwest during the 1990s, often in DIY spaces, before relocating to New York City. He moved to San Francisco in 2001, where he recorded his debut E.P., entitled Not the Way E.P., released on Monitor Records in Baltimore. McCombs then recorded a Peel Session for John Peel in 2003, and that year released his first LP A, also touring with Baltimore’s OXES as his backing band. McCombs and his band spent much of 2003 and 2004 touring, performing everywhere from the All Tomorrow’s Parties festival to house shows. McCombs otherwise divided his time amongst the Pacific Northwest, England and Baltimore. In spring 2005 he released PREfection on Monitor Records and 4AD, and in support of the album he toured with Modest Mouse. Later that year, he moved to Southern California to begin work on his third full-length, Dropping the Writ, which was released on October 9, 2007, by Domino Records. It was named one of’s Best Albums of 2007. Also in 2007 he toured with Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti. He signed a multiple-album deal with Domino Records, who released his following four records including Catacombs (2009), which was voted one of the “50 Top Albums on the Year” by Pitchfork. It was followed by Wit’s End (2011), Humor Risk (2011), and Big Wheel and Others (2013). He toured with John Cale in 2012, and also performed at the benefit concert Occupy Sandy. Other bands he has performed or toured with include Ariel Pink, Cat Power, Band of Horses, Andrew Bird, The Decemberists, Arcade Fire, Peter Bjorn and John, Papercuts, The Shins, Iron and Wine, Deerhoof, The Walkmen, Jana Hunter, Thurston Moore, Joe Russo and The War On Drugs. His single “Bradley Manning” premiered on the Democracy Now News Hour in 2012. His songs have been featured in films including the surf film The Present (2009), and Ralph Arlyck documentary Following Sean, as well as notable skate videos featuring Jason Dill, Jerry Hsu Chima Ferguson and Dylan Rieder. His song “Bobby, King of Boys Town” appeared in HBO show Girls (Season 2, Episode 9 – “On All Fours”). In 2014 he did a co-headlining fall tour with the Meat Puppets. McCombs is a member of The Skiffle Players, who released their debut LP, Skifflin’ on February 12, 2016. In June 2016, McCombs performed at the Primavera Sound and Field Day music festivals. McCombs ANTI- Records debut, Mangy Love was released on August 26, 2016.]

(44.) Hand Habits – placeholder / Saddle Creek Records / March 1, 2019
[Meg Duffy grew up in a small town in Upstate New York and they cut their teeth as a session guitarist and touring member of Kevin Morby’s band. The Hand Habits project emerged after Meg moved to Los Angeles; it started as a private songwriting outlet but soon evolved into a fully-fledged band with Meg at the helm. Hand Habits’ debut album, Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void), was released by Woodsist Records in 2017. The LP was entirely self-produced and recorded in Meg’s home during spare moments when they weren’t touring. Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void) is a lush, homespun collection of folk songs that found Meg in an exploratory state as an artist moving out on their own for the first time. Two years later, Hand Habits has returned with their sophomore album, placeholder. To make this album, Meg chose to work in a studio and bring in collaborators, entrusting them with what had previously been a very personal creative process. Over the course of 12 tracks, Meg emerges with new confidence as both a bandleader and singer. This album is as tender and immediate as anything Meg’s ever written, but it’s also intensely focused and refined, the work of a meticulous musician ready to share their singular vision with the world. The name placeholder stems from Meg’s fascination with the undefinable. Their songs serve as openings — carved-out spaces waiting to be endowed with meaning. As a lyricist, Meg is drawn to the in-between, and the songs on this new album primarily confront the ways in which certain experiences can serve as a stepping stone on the road to self-discovery. “A big aspect of my songwriting and the way I move through the world depends on my relationships with people. The songs on placeholder are about accountability and forgiveness,” Meg says. “These are all real stories. I don’t fictionalize much.” Meg describes these songs as their most direct to date, crafted with clear intention, and unlike Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void), placeholder doesn’t meander. “It’s less of a submerged landscape and more a concise series of thoughts,” Meg explains. Instrumentally, placeholder can be situated alongside some of Meg’s folk-adjacent contemporaries like Angel Olsen or Big Thief, and the guitar work on this album proves that Meg continues to be one of the finest young musicians working today. placeholder is another entry in the Hand Habits songbook, but it’s also a valuable testament of our time. While placeholder inspires a sense of ease, simple questions rarely beget easy answers and Meg honors the indescribable joy and profound sorrow that comes with figuring things out, one step at a time.]

(45.) Big Thief – U.F.O.F. / 4AD / May 3, 2019
[Indie rock band with folk roots based in Brooklyn, New York. Adrianne Lenker on guitar & vocals, Buck Meek on guitar & backing vocals, Max Oleartchik on bass, and James Krivchenia on drums. All four members of Big Thief attended the Berklee College of Music, but only formed a group after each had graduated. The band’s first album, Masterpiece, was released on Saddle Creek Records on May 27, 2016. On April 4, 2017, Big Thief premiered a new single, “Mythological Beauty,” on NPR. The following day, the band released the single’s official video and confirmed that the song would appear on their next LP, Capacity. The full album was released on June 9 via Saddle Creek. In 2019, Big Thief released two albums and several singles. In the lead up to their third album, U.F.O.F., the band released three singles, ”U.F.O.F”, “Cattails”, and “Century.” The album was released on May 3, 2019. The band’s fourth album, Two Hands, was later released on October 11, 2019. Its release was preceded by the singles “Not” and “Forgotten Eyes.”]

(46.) The UK’s – Basement Mondays (EP) / The UK’s / October 26, 2019
[Kansas City based 4-piece alternative/rock/punk/garage band with Noah Bartelt on lead vocals & guitar, Scott Combs on guitar & vocals, Katelyn Miles on bass, and Tarquin Eugene Kellough on drums. Last year The UK’s released, “American Way of Death” on November 17, 2018. This was a follow up release to their 2016 debut album “Bad Seed.”]

(47.) Berwanger – Watching A Garden Die / Wiretap Records / June 28, 2019
[4th full length album from Berwanger the band fronted by rock & roll singer songwriter Josh Berwanger. Josh Berwanger was in The Anniversary, a Kansas band that released, 2000’s Designing a Nervous Breakdown & 2002’s Your Majesty and sold over 100,000 records before breaking up on tour in Japan. The band recently reunited for new shows and a tour this year. Berwanger was also in the band, The Only Children, and released, 2004’s Change of Living & 2007’s Keeper of Youth. When Keeper of Touth ended Josh Berwanger took a break and became a high school basketball coach. In the 2012 Josh formed the Josh Berwanger band. Berwanger released Dtrange Stains in April 2014, the EP Demonios November 11, 2016, Exorcism Rock in October 201/ OLIVIA FOX / August 23, 2019
[The Kansas City based band, OLIVIA FOX is Lauren Flynn, Aubrey Callahan and Tiffany Smith. The trio recently released their full length album “Carbon” on August 23, 2019. The band has previously released multiple singles and two EPs. OLIVIA FOX create music that is a unique marriage between classic folk instrumentation, vocals, and harmonies to modern programmed beats and synth pads.]

(48.) Olivia Fox – Carbon / OLIVIA FOX / August 23, 2019
[The Kansas City based band, OLIVIA FOX is Lauren Flynn, Aubrey Callahan and Tiffany Smith. The trio recently released their full length album “Carbon” on August 23, 2019. The band has previously released multiple singles and two EPs. OLIVIA FOX create music that is a unique marriage between classic folk instrumentation, vocals, and harmonies to modern programmed beats and synth pads.]

(49.) Headlight Rivals – Mattson / Black Site Records / November 1, 2019
[Manhattan, Kansas based band formed by Eric Kleiner on guitar & vocals, Seven Black on bass, and Kris Kleiner on drums. With Pete Boulger on accessory percussion, Rich Mattson on backing vocals & slide guitar, Kate Trimmell on backing vocals, and Jeff Denney on all air guitars. All songs written by Headlight Rivals. Produced by Rich Mattson and Headlight Rivals. Digital mastering by Duane Trower at Weights and Measures Soundlab. Vinyl mastering by Chris Muth at Taloowa Corp. Photos by Carlos Salazar © 2019 Headlight Rivals. All Rights Reserved. The band previously released the EP Juliette on June 29, 2017.]

(50.) Brittany Howard – Jaime / ATO Records / September 20, 2019
[Brittany Howard writes, “I wrote this record as a process of healing. Every song, I confront something within me or beyond me. Things that are hard or impossible to change, words and music to describe what I’m not good at conveying to those I love, or a name that hurts to be said: Jaime. // I dedicated the title of this record to my sister who passed away as a teenager. She was a musician too. I did this so her name would no longer bring me memories of sadness and as a way to thank her for passing on to me everything she loved: music, art, creativity. // But, the record is not about her. It’s about me. // It’s not as veiled as work I have done before. I’m pretty candid about myself and who I am and what I believe. Which, is why I needed to do it on my own. // I wrote and arranged a lot of these songs on my laptop using Logic. Shawn Everett helped me make them worthy of listening to and players like Nate Smith, Robert Glasper, Zac Cockrell, Lloyd Buchanan, Lavinia Meijer, Paul Horton, Rob Moose and Larry Goldings provided the musicianship that was needed to share them with you. // Some songs on this record are years old that were just sitting on my laptop, forgotten, waiting to come to life. Some of them I wrote in a tiny green house in Topanga, CA during a heatwave. // I was inspired by traveling across the United States. I saw many beautiful things and many heartbreaking things: poverty, loneliness, discouraged people, empty and poor towns. And of course the great swathes of natural, untouched lands. Huge pink mountains, seemingly endless lakes, soaring redwoods and yellow plains that stretch for thousands of acres. There were these long moments of silence in the car when I could sit and reflect. I wondered what it was I wanted for myself next. I suppose all I want is to help others feel a bit better about being. All I can offer are my own stories in hopes of not only being seen and understood, but also to learn to love my own self as if it were an act of resistance. // Resisting that annoying voice that exists in all of our heads that says we aren’t good enough, talented enough, beautiful enough, thin enough, rich enough or successful enough. The voice that amplifies when we turn on our TVs or scroll on our phones. // It’s empowering to me to see someone be unapologetically themselves when they don’t fit within those images. That’s what I want for myself next and that’s why I share with you, “Jaime”.”]

(51.) Radar State – Strays / Wiretap Records / January 11, 2019
[Radar State features Josh Berwanger (The Anniversary, Berwanger) and Jim Suptic (The Get Up Kids, Blackpool Lights) trading off lead and rhythm guitar duties, with Matt Pryor (The Get Up Kids, The New Amsterdams) on bass, and Adam Phillips (The Architects, The Gadjits) on drums. Berwanger, Pryor, and Suptic all take turns on lead vocals.]

(52.) Volker Brothers – Wrecking Ball (EP) / Volker Brothers / June 28, 2019
[2nd EP from Erik Voeks and David George, two rock and roll brothers who play guitar and harmonized on their own pop-folk-rock songs influenced by The Everly Brothers to Elvis Costello from XTC to the Finn Brothers. The new Volker Brothers EP was recorded at Weights and Measures Sound Lab with engineer Duane Trower, with Matt Richey on drums, Lin Buck on keys, and Rick Willoughby on bass. Singer, songwriter, producer, rock and roller, musical theatre creator, David George has toured all over, played on national televison, has written a Christmas Musical about a Drag Queen, and has performed at The Missouri Reperatory Theatre. David George also had a recent release — three EP’s over a twelve month period. Here I Go Again, Won’t Let Go, and Lesson Of Love, with each album adding to the previous (acoustic, band, horns). George gained national attention when the Kansas City Chiefs chose his song “Hey, Kansas City!” to be their touchdown anthem in 2015-16 season. He also toured with the legendary John Fogerty, performing sold out arenas and the “late night” circuit (David Letterman, Jay Leno). Erik Voeks recently released full length album So The Wind Won’t Blow It Away in 2017 on Hanky Panky Records, a label based in Bilbao, Spain. It is the highly anticipated follow up to his 1993 album, Sandbox (Rockville Records) “A pervasively melodic collection of power-pop – a lost masterpiece” (Fresh Air KCUR). This doesn’t mean Voeks wasn’t busy. He has been a very in demand bassist in the Midwest and tours in Europe. The word “Volker” comes from the Germanic word “Fulc” meaning people. It is also the name of a neighborhood in KCwhere Erik Voeks & David George met. Volker Brothers are an acoustic duo that share lead vocals & background harmonies influenced by the likes of The Everly Brothers, Simon & Garfunkel, The Eagles, Tom Petty, and Elvis Costello to Crowded House, XTC, and The Beatles. Voeks and George first started playing together when one would fill in with the other’s band. Whether it was Erik playing bass and singing backup in David George & A Crooked Mile or David playing guitar and singing backup in Erik Voeks & The Vague Lakes, the two realized they had a musicality in common. Stripping the band back to just the two of them on acoustic guitars enabled them to do a weeks worth of shows in Seattle. They began performing intimate shows around Kansas City, including house concerts and private events, and spreading the word on their melody driven, harmony enriched, acoustic based music. It’s not pop and it’s not folk, but a blend of the two.More info at:]

(53.) The Greeting Committee – I’m Afraid I’m Not Angry (EP) / Harvest Records / October 17, 2019
[Formed in Kansas City in 2015 with Addie Sartino, Brandon Yangmi, Austin Fraser, and Pierce Turcotte. This new EP is a follow up to their October 26, 2018 full length vinyl release “This Is It.” The band has previously released the EP “Meeting People is Easy” in 2017, and “It’s Not All That Bad” in 2015.]

(54.) Durand Jones and The Indications – American Love Call / Dead Oceans / March 1, 2019
[Bayou-born soul sensation, Durand Jones got his start in the church, after being forced to sing in the choir of his rural hometown Hillaryville, Louisiana because his Grandmother thought he sang too much at home. When his music career took him to Bloomington, Indiana, he was selected to join the legendary Indiana University Soul Revue, and it was through his involvement that he met writer/producer duo Aaron Frazer and Blake Rhein. The three began writing original soul music, recording themselves straight to tape in the basements of Bloomington – and their debut album is now available on Colemine Records.]

(55.) Simon Fink and The Wires – Lullabies Till Dawn / Simon Fink / June 8, 2019
[Simon Fink is a composer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. His music has been called “delicate, intriguing, shadowy, (and) suddenly new” (NPR) and “refreshing” (The Kansas City Star). He brings a wide-ranging background and classically-trained ear to genres from opera to electronic music to the American folk song. His music has received honors from the Museum of Modern Art (NY), the Aspen Music Festival, the Academy of Arts and Letters, the MacDowell Colony, the Mellon Foundation, and the ASCAP Foundation. He currently writes and performs with the folk/bluegrass quartet Under the Big Oak Tree. Lullabies Till Dawn is an illustrated songbook with songs and narrative by Simon Borman Fink and art by Benjamin Parks. The accompanying CD features performances of the lullabies by Simon Fink with The Wires string duo (Laurel Morgan Parks and Sascha Groschang) and harmony vocals by Cheyenne Dorrell.]

(56.) Ensemble Iberica – Live Recordings / Tzigane Music / July 19, 2019
[One of two different volumes of live recordings release this Summer from the collective.Kansas City based Ensemble Ibérica performs the music of Iberia (Spain and Portugal) and their former colonies. Programs explore diverse time periods, styles and locations including the Spanish Baroque, Portuguese Fado and Argentine Tango. Ensemble Ibérica features extraordinary musicians from classical, jazz and urban folk music traditions giving the audience something that is truly unique. Band Members include: Beau Bledsoe, Victoria Botero, Karim Memi, Rich Wheeler, Brandon Draper, Victor Penniman, Jeff Harshbarger, Jordan Shipley, and Michael McClintock. Live Recordings (Vol 1) features highlights from our 2015 and 2016 Concert Series. Ensemble Iberica records every concert, and this collection was edited down from approximately fifty hours of recordings in concert halls, theaters, and intimate clubs. The energy and mutual engagement between musicians and a live audience is an irreplaceable experience for all involved. This spontaneous dynamic allows a musician to embrace an unscripted accident or to extend an improvisation into unimagined territory. A live recording can transmit these aspects of performance much more than a studio recording can ever attain. Performers include: Nathalie Pires on vocals, Mireya Ramos on vocals & violin, Shae Fiol ob vocals, Bruno Bessa on vocals, Victoria Botero on soprano, Fedra Cooper Barrera on vocals, Beau Bledsoe on guitar, Michael McClintock on guitar, Jeff Freling on guitar, Jordan Shipley on guitar, Rod Fleeman on guitar, Clarke Wyatt on banjo, Victor Penniman on viola da gamba, Christian Fatu on violin, Betse Ellis on fiddle & vocals, Norma Pacheco O’Neil on castanets, Amado Espinoza on charango, flutes & percussion, Brandon Draper on percussion, John Currey on percussion, Pat Conway on percussion, Zsolt Eder on violin, Rich Wheeler on Saxophone, Jeff Harshbarger on bass, Dominique Sanders on bass, Pedro Pimentel on bass, Hermon Mehari on trumpet, Mark Strozier on flute. More info at:]

(57.) Shiny Jets – EPs 1 & 2 / Shiny Jets / June 4, 2019
[On June 4, 2019 Shiny Jets released EPs 1 & 2 on 12″ vinyl and also EPs 3 & 4 and a second 12″ vinyl. All songs written, recorded and mixed by Shiny Jets. Mastered by Carl Saff at Saff Studios. Shiny Jets is an experimental rock band formed in Chicago in 2004. The band began when drummer Tucker Slough encountered Singer/Guitarist Shanté Clair performing at a party thrown by a mutual friend in the Rogers Park area. The two struck up a friendship and began trying to incorporate Tucker’s drumming into Shanté’s existing solo project, The Maybe. Soon they began writing new songs and pushing their musical ideas further, incorporating looping pedals and other electronics until they had compiled a number of songs. Some time afterwards, Tucker moved back to his hometown of Kansas City and Shanté left Chicago to live in New York for a number of years. Around 2014, the two began working on new songs together, with Shanté writing songs that Tucker would then add drums parts to and send back via Dropbox. Within a short time the material they were creating began to take shape and discussions began about re-establishing the band. In March of 2015 Shanté packed up and moved to Kansas City to begin work on the project that would assume the moniker Shiny Jets. Incorporating songs written back in Chicago and those songs written long distance between New York and Kansas City, the two began adding layers of sampling and further experimentation with even more complex looping and arrangements. Currently Shiny Jets are currently based in Kansas City where the band rehearse, perform and record. More info at:]

(58.) Akkilles – Your Ghost / David Bennett / November 8, 2019
[Akkilles is the music project of David Bennett. He also helps other people make music. For this recording: All songs written & performed by David Bennett. All songs produced by David Bennett & Joel Nanos at Element Recording in Kansas City. Drums by Isaac Anderson. Bass by Nick Pick & David Bennett. All other instruments by David Bennett. Artwork by @mattschmitzillustration. David Bennet writes on Instagram that this release features, “Some new old tunes…” and that he “Wrote these tunes in 2013 and 2014, and that they were all recorded with Joel Nanos at Element Recording.” In 2019 Akkilles also released three singles with one of them appaering on the new EP. “Feelin’ My Self” was released February 1, 2019. “Meet in the Middle” was released October 25, 2019. “By Myself” was eleased Nov. 1, 2019 Akkilles released the critically acclaimed debut record “Something You’d Say” on July 2, 2013.]

(59.) Yola – Walk Through Fire / Nonesuch Records / February 22, 2019
[Yolanda Quartey was born 1984. Known professionally as Yola. She is an English singer-songwriter, from Bristol, England. She became the lead singer of the band Phantom Limb, who released their first album in 2010. She also sang backing vocals for Massive Attack. Yola released her first EP, Orphan Offering, in 2016. In February 2019, she released her debut album Walk Through the Fire on Dan Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound label, to much acclaim. AllMusic called it “an extraordinary record, one designed to be part of a grand musical tradition, and it contains enough emotion and imagination to earn its place within that lineage.”]

(60.) Fathers – High Horses (EP) / Fathers / March 1, 2019
[Formed in 2017 the band includes: Kenneth Storz on vocals, guitar, & keyboards; Brooke Honeycutt on vocals, bells, & percussion; David Vava Littlewood on vocals, keyboards, & bells; Matt Guilliams on bass, & percussion; Bryce Veazey on vibraphone, voice, & percussion; Josh Seerden on guitar, keyboards, bass, & percussion; Celeste Tilley on trombone, vocals, & percussion.]

(61.) True Lions – You’re Not Invited (EP) / True Lions / Nov. 9, 2019
[This is the band’s second EP release of this year. They released their EP debut, “Cute at Best,” on February 5, 2019. True Lions is: Alison Hawkins on guitar, synth, and vocals; Elizabeth Kosko on percussion, vocals; Mikala Petillo on bass, vocals; Claire Adams on guitar, vocals; Leslie Butsch on saxophone, Ezgi Karakus on cello; and Teri Quinn on vocals. All songs written by True Lions and produced by Claire Adams and Alison Hawkins. Tracking Engineering by Claire Adams. Mixing and Mastering by Ian Dobyns and Chase Horseman. Album Artwork by Genevieve Sloan. Special thanks to Calvin Arsenia and Fritz Hutchison.]

(62.) Miki P – Swallowtail (EP) / Miki P / September 1, 2018
[1st single of new EP from Miki P, with The swallowtails, a follow up to her debut full length album Dome of Swallows from last year. Labeled: “Introspective pop music with lyric-driven folk influences, mixed with collaborative energy & an odd pairing of instruments, Miki P locked in with the Swallowtails create a moment with music written and arranged from the heart.” Miki P started playing guitar in middle school. She taught herself to play the drums, while listening to Mitch Mitchell, Keith Moon and Ringo Starr. As a teen she played drums for various groups including the band American Slim. She wrote songs for their full-length album Irreplaceable released in 2017, followed by a single “Queen of Hearts” released April 11, 2018. She also plays ukulele & piano, teaching herself how to play both the instruments and using them frequently in all projects she is involved in. She was a featured vocalist with The Band That Fel to Earth – Bowie Tribute in January. She has played Boulevardia, Middle of the Map Fest, Royal’s Kaufman Stadium, recordBar, Uptown Theater, Arrowhead Stadium, Nelson Atkins Museum, the Crossroads Music Festival and the SXSW Music Fest.]

(63.) The National – I Am Easy to Find / 4AD / May 17, 2019
[The National is an American rock band from Cincinnati, Ohio, formed in 1999. The band consists of Matt Berninger (vocals), Aaron Dessner (guitar, piano, keyboards), Bryce Dessner (guitar), Scott Devendorf (bass) and Bryan Devendorf (drums). Founded by Berninger, Aaron Dessner, and Scott and Bryan Devendorf, The National released their self-titled debut album, The National (2001), on Brassland Records, an independent record label founded by Dessner and his twin brother, Bryce Dessner. Bryce, who had assisted in recording the album, soon joined the band, participating as a full member in the recording of its follow-up, Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers (2003). Leaving behind their day jobs, the National signed with Beggars Banquet Records and released their third studio album, Alligator (2005), to widespread critical acclaim. The band’s fourth and fifth studio albums, Boxer (2007) and High Violet (2010), increased their exposure significantly. In 2013, the band released its sixth studio album, Trouble Will Find Me, which was nominated for Best Alternative Music Album at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards. In 2017 the band released the album Sleep Well Beast, which won the Grammy award for Best Alternative Music Album at the 60th Annual Grammy Awards. Their eighth studio album, I Am Easy to Find, was released on May 17, 2019. Four of the band’s albums were included on NME’s 2013 list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. Pitchfork writes: “On nearly every song Berninger is accompanied and sometimes silenced by a rotation of featured female vocalists who step in to offer perspective, commentary, and dissent. The National have recruited some of the best singers out, among them Lisa Hannigan, Mina Tindle, Kate Stables, Sharon Van Etten, and the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, whose spotlight “Dust Swirls in Strange Light” benches Berninger all together. Most revelatory of all is Gail Ann Dorsey, David Bowie’s longtime bassist and backing singer, who heralds the album’s new direction midway through opener “You Had Your Soul With You.” Her extraordinary voice of saffron arrives like a divine intervention, instantly parting a track that had previously been National-by-numbers.]

(64.) Kemet the Phantom – Electric Park / Kemet Creative / August 16, 2019
[Through the lens of the 32-year-old rap artists’ upbringing from birth to present day in Kansas City, each song represents eight topics: SEDUCTION, POWER, VICE, DEATH, EUPHORIA, LUST, PRIDE, CHANGE. With songs like “Rollin’ Down Paseo”, Kemet explores the nostalgia and confusion of emotions that fester as the future of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, formally known as The Paseo, is determined by a vote. Electric Park was co-produced by Kemet and the legendary producer and sound designer, Leonard Dstroy.
Executive Produced by Kyle Dykes. Written by Kemet Coleman. Artwork by Kemet Coleman, Michael Picman and Jon Conway. Kemet Coleman is Kemet the Phantom, a Kansas City based musicians who calls himself a rap Artist, actor, and Urbanist. Kemet is a member of the Hip-Hop duo COA (Center of Attention) and is the lead singer of the 8-member Funk/Rap/Soul band The Phantastics. Kemet, shines as a complete showman embracing a James Brown-esque persona via syncopated vocals, rhythmic dance moves and dapper costume style. Kemet the Phantom is a two time Pitch Music Award nominee for “Best Hip-Hop Act.” Kemet created the first ever Kansas City mayoral candidate rap song for the Sly James for Mayor campaign in 2010. A University of Missouri – Kansas City alumnus, Kemet, created “Gold and Blue” for UMKC’s sports teams, which has garnered thousands of plays on YouTube and has been featured on prime-time television commercials for the university. More info at:] [Kemet The Phantom plays with Marcus Lewis Big Band presenting his hip hop poetry with, 18-piece jazz ensemble called Brass and Bougee.]

(65.) The Nicole Springer Band – Willing (EP) / Nicole Springer / Nov. 10, 2019
[Nicole Springer is a singer-songwriter + multi-instrumentalist out of the Kansas City Metro. She was the founder of critically acclaimed + award wining local groups, The Clementines, and The Good Hearts. She’s written original music for her bands The Good Hearts, Heart Machine, and her solo projects. Nicole Springer is a 2019 Pitch KC nominee for Best Vocalist, multi-award winning and critically acclaimed singer-songwriter. Nicole has performed at numerous festivals and venues. In 2014 she was the recipient of both a Pitch Music Award and Project Backstage Award. More info at]

(66.) Chase The Horseman – Disinformation Blues (EP) / Chase Horseman / July 12, 2019
[Music & lyrics by Chase Horseman. Recorded & Mixed by Joel Nanos & Chase Horseman at Element Recording. Mastered by Joel Nanos. Drums by Ian Dobyns, bass by Skylar Cowdry, guitar/vocals/synthesizers by Chase Horseman. Chase the Horseman is a band, film composer, multi-instrumentalist, audio engineer, & producer. He has composed music for over 36 films and as musician has collaborated with Clairaudients, Teri Quinn, Heidi Lynne Gluck, and more. Chase The Horseman released the single “U Martyr U” June 19, 2018, and the single “Modern Ruins” on Oct 4, 2018.]

(67.) Scott Stanton & The Butter Band – Crag-o-lea / Scott Stanton / February 25, 2019
[Three years in the making, the newest album from Scott Stanton & The Butter Band features the songs of Scott Stanton one of KC’s finest songwriters of original, down-to-earth songs weaved with inspiration from songwriters Bob Dylan & John Prine. Recorded at Rob Nold Studio. Mixed & mastered by James Albright. Scott Stanton (songwriter) on vocals & acoustic guitar; Chad Brothers on acoustic guitar & harmonies; Kasey Rausch on upright bass & harmonies & fiddle; Marco Pascolini on pedal steel guitar; Grady Keller on banjo. Scott Stanton is also a host & Producer for River Trade Radio airing Sundays from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM.]

(68.) Wonderfuzz – Get There / MASKT / April 19, 2019
[Wonderfuzz is a Kansas City based band formed on May 11, 2012 with Natalie Norman on vocals, Jordan Smith on bass & vocals, Sam Hoskins on drums & vocals, Josh Johnson on guitar & vocals, and EvanJohn McIntosh on guitar. The 5-piece band started out working for several years as a cover band, studying multiple styles of rock & roll and rhythm & blues. In 2018 Wonderfuzz began to write and record original material releasing a few singles in 2018. In April of 2019 the band released their debut full length album “Get There” and their first music video, for the title track. On November 7, 2019, Wonderfuzz releases their second full length album this year. Wonderfuzz released a second full length live album “Live With It” Nov. 8, 2019]

(69.) Jamila Woods – LEGACY! LEGACY! / Jagjaguwar / May 10, 2019
[Second album from Jamila Woods who was born October 6, 1989, and is a Chicago-based American singer, songwriter and poet. Woods is a graduate of St. Ignatius College Prep and Brown University, where she received a BA in Africana Studies and Theater & Performance Studies. Her work focuses on themes of Black ancestry, Black feminism, and Black identity, with recurring emphases on self-love and the City of Chicago. In 2012, Jamila Woods published her first chapbook, entitled The Truth About Dolls. Her work can be found in the anthologies The Breakbeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop (2015), Courage: Daring Poems for Gutsy Girls (2014), and The UnCommon Core: Contemporary Poems for Learning & Living (2013). Her influences include Lucille Clifton, Gwendolyn Brooks, Toni Morrison, and Frida Kahlo. Woods was also one of three editors of The Breakbeat Poets Volume II, entitled Black Girl Magic. The 2018 publication is an anthology of poetry by contemporary Black women, “exploring themes of beauty, unapologetic blackness, intersectionality, self-definition, and more.” Woods is the Associate Artistic Director of Young Chicago Authors (YCA), an organization in the Chicago dedicated to uplifting youth voices through arts education and mentorship. Through YCA, Woods helps to organize Louder Than a Bomb, the world’s largest youth poetry slam festival. She also facilitates poetry workshops and creates curriculum for Chicago Public Schools. She is widely known for her collaborative works with Chance the Rapper on the hit song “Sunday Candy” from the album Surf as well as “Blessings” from Coloring Book. Woods is also featured on the Macklemore & Ryan Lewis song “White Privilege II”. In January 2016, Woods signed to Chicago’s independent hip-hop label, Closed Sessions. Jamila released her debut album HEAVN on her SoundCloud page on July 11, 2016 to critical acclaim. The album features collaborations with Chance the Rapper, Noname, Saba, Lorine Chia, Kweku Collins and Donnie Trumpet.]

(70.) The Wires – Wilder / The Wires / May 11, 2019
[2nd album from KC bsed duo, The Wires who compose and perform original music for violin and cello. Inspired by a myriad of genres and eclectic sounds, The Wires are not your typical strings group. The project encompasses a blend of wide-ranging styles, from tango to gypsy, jazz to rock and infused with the precision of classical form. Created, composed & performed by Laurel Morgan (violin) and Sascha Groschang (cello). Laurel Morgan grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska. A classically trained musician, she has been playing the violin for 30 years. Laurel graduated from the UMKC Conservatory of Music in 2005. She has also performed with the Des Moines Symphony, Quixotic Fusion, Musical Theatre Heritage at the Off-Center Theatre, the folk-rock band, ‘In the Pines” that won several Pitch Music Awards. And with her husband artist Ben Parks she is ia founder of the band Of Tree As a composer, arranger, and musician Laurel Morgan has traveled to Germany, Austria, and throughout the United States, but is based here in Kansas City. Sascha Groschang graduated from Paseo Academy of Performing Arts in 2000, UMKC Conservatory of Music in 2004, and Mannes College – The New School For Music in 2008. She had her solo recital debut at Carnegie Hall’s recital hall, Weill Hall in February 2009. Sascha has recorded or performed with Peter Gabriel, Joanna Newsom, Ashanti, Adina Menzel, Clay Walker, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. She has also worked for NBC, Rhino Records, Juniper String Ensemble, Saint Joesph Symphony, and is part of the faculty at Missouri Western State University. She also teaches out of her Midtown KC home studio. You can learn more at: The Wires joined us live on WMM on May 8, 2019.]

(71.) The Depth and The Whisper – The Waiting is the Hardest Part / The Depth and The Whisper / January 18, 2019
[Dave Tanner on bass, guitar & vocals; Albert Bickley on guitar & vocals. Albert Bickley, a Kansas City native, who now lives in New York has been writing, recording and performing original music for years. Everything, including other bands he’s been in, have led to this moment and this project. Dave Tanner, a Canadian who calls Parkville, MO, home, has played bass in numerous bands through the years from rock and heavy metal to folk and punk. Albert Bickley and Dave Tanner do not believe the world owes them anything, but they know that they have something to give her. The two songwriters and musicians met in 2010 in the music scene of Kansas City, where they both had been active for several years. “When my last band broke up and I wrote new songs again, I immediately thought of Dave,” Albert remembers “I wanted his bass. I just told him to come over when you have time. He played the demos, we listened to it and just said, ‘That’s it! Perfect! ‘”This feeling is very rare.” Dave confirms:” We immediately had great respect and reverence for each other. We are both at the moment. And our music satisfies a deep need in us. We complement each other, we get better. And by that I do not just mean the music. “Because since then an extraordinary friendship has grown between them. “Albert and I started a conversation back then,” Dave explains, “and it never ended.”]

(72.) Cuee – Shameless / Cuee / November 23, 2018
[Originating from Chicago, Illinois, Cuee is a 27 year old Lawrence based hip-hop artist emcee, and educator. Cuee who has gained fans over the last three years in Lawrence and Kansas City for their critically acclaimed musical releases and live performances. Cuee recently recieved their Master’s Degree in Higher Education Administration from the University of Kansas where Cuee also worked as a graduate assistant. Cuee is also a recently graduate of Artist Inc. and has a passionate drive for everything hip-hop. Drawing major influence from hip-hop artists such as Missy Elliot, J. Cole, and Chance The Rapper.]

(73.) Approach – Merely Minutes, In A Day / Datura Records / February 4, 2019
[Produced, Sequenced, Recorded, Photography, Mixed & Mastered By: Aikido Bray. Artwork & Design By: The Art My Life Imitates. Sean Hunt aka Approach is a Kansas emcee/producer who’s been in the game for almost 20 years. He’s released almost a dozen records and traveled the world over the span of his career. He’s also the cofounder of Datura Records, a hip hop label started in 2000.]

(74.) Lambchop – This (Is What I Wanted to Tell You) / Merge Records / March 22, 2019
[Lambchop, originally from Nashville, was ever a band with a “core” lineup, Lambchop has consisted of a large and fluid collective of musicians focused around its creative centre, frontman Kurt Wagner. AllMusic referred to tLambchop as “arguably the most consistently brilliant and unique American group to emerge during the 1990s”. Initially indebted to traditional country, the music has subsequently moved through a range of influences including post-rock, soul and lounge music. Whatever the style, the characteristic mood of Lambchop’s music is evoked by Wagner’s distinctive songwriting: lyrically subtle and ambiguous, the vocals melodic but understated. Not so long ago, Lambchop had a famously sprawling line-up, toting a dozen or so members around the world and into the studio to document elliptical country-soul mutations. But in recent years, the band has become a more personal vehicle for Kurt Wagner. Anchored by him and framed by bassist Matt Swanson and Wagner’s incorrigibly grinning foil, the pianist Tony Crow, the Lambchop of this decade has become more pliant and adaptable, opening itself to unexpected collaborators that give Wagner’s thoughts and feelings the shape they need for each new album.]

(75.) Amyl and The Sniffers – Amyl and The Sniffers / ATO Records / May 24, 2019
[Debut album from Melbourne, Australia based, 4-piece punk band fronted by singer Amy Taylor who explains of the song, “‘Got You’ is about that feeling you get when you first start seeing someone and you’re excited to see them, no matter what shit they got. You just see them at the pub and it feels like the most exciting thing in the world, like you’re so lucky they’re even there. It’s definitely one of the “sweetest” songs on the album, and less punky. It was kind of inspired by Split Enz.”]

(76.) Lee Fields & The Expressions – It Rains Love / Big Crown Records / April 5, 2019
[With a career spanning 43 years, releases on twelve different record labels, and having toured the world over with his raucous-yet- tender voice, itʼs mind-blowing that the music heʼs making today. Elmer Lee Fields was born in 1951 in Wilson, North Carolina, the son of Emma Jean Fields and John Fields. He was the second child of six children. Fields had an interest in music from an early age. He decided to go to New York, at the age of 17 to pursue a music career. Although his mother (whom he later named an album in honor of) tried to convince him not to go, she ended up giving him her last 20 dollars. With moves and style inspired by James Brown, Fields soon had the nickname “Little JB” because of his physical and vocal resemblance with James Brown. He has worked with Kool and the Gang, Hip Huggers, O.V. Wright, Darrell Banks, and Little Royal. Fields has also worked with such legends such as B.B. King, Clarence Carter, Dr. John, Tyrone Davis, Johnny Taylor, Denise LaSalle, Bobby Blue Bland, Betty Wright, The Manhattans, Little Milton and Bobby Womack. He recorded his first single in 1969 on the Bedford label, “Bewildered” b/w “Tell Her I Love Her.” He recorded “Gonna Make Love” on London Records in 1973. That same year, Fields released the popular 45, “Let’s Talk It Over” b/w “She’s a Love Maker”. Fields dropped “Everybody Gonna Give Their Thing Away to Somebody (Sometime)” b/w “East Coast Rapper,” on SoundPlus in 1975. Most of the second half of the 70’s Fields spent cutting singles for Angle 3 Records, including “The Bull Is Coming” b/w “Funky Screw”. In 1980 he released a full-length album with Angle 3 called Let’s Talk It Over. In the 1980s, disco became increasingly popular, at the expense of soul. Venues that had previously booked Fields now booked DJs. Fields moved into real estate in Newark, New Jersey, in order to provide for his family. In the 1990s, Fields returned singing soul-blues on the Southern circuit. He signed with Mississippi-based Ace Records and debuted Enough Is Enough. On Ace, Fields released Coming to Tear the Roof Down in 1995 and Dreaming Big Time in 1996 in which he played keyboards and synthesizers. Later that year Fields signed to Desco Records founded by Gabriel Roth and Phillip Lehman. Sharon Jones, who was signed to Desco also at that time, sang backup for Fields on an early 45. Fields was featured on the debut album Gimmie the Paw by the label’s band The Soul Providers in 1997. He released several singles with in Desco and in 1999, dropped a full-length album Let’s Get a Groove On. Desco later split into, Daptone Records and Soul Fire, and Fields eventually recorded for them both. “Give Me a Chance” and “Shot Down” were two 7″ singles he released on Daptone over 2001-2002 and in late 2002, the album Problems, on Soul Fire. In early 2005 he performed on “Stranded In Your Love” included on Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings’ Naturally LP. In 2006 French House DJ Martin Solveig approached him to do a dance track. They toured in France and recorded the songs “Jealousy”, “Everybody”, “I’m a Good Man”, and “I Want You”. Truth and Soul Records recorded a single with Fields that later became “Honey Dove”. Lee Fields & The Expressions released “My World” for Truth and Soul in 2009. In 2011 he followed up with the album titled Treacherous. After releasing Faithful Man in 2012 with Truth and Soul, the singer toured globally. He then released two albums Emma Jean in 2014 and Special Night in 2017 (on Big Crown Records by former Truth and Soul co founder Leon Michels).][Lee Fields & The Expressions play Knuckleheads Saloon, 2715 Rochester KCMO, Friday, September 20, at 7:00 PM, with Neal Francis.]

(77.) Sky Smeed – Leaving Again / Sky Smeed / February 9, 2019
[Sky Smeed told us that he wrote this song while watching the horrible things that happened in Charlottesville, WV a few weeks ago. It’s influenced by a bunch of things for certain. Sky Smeed was born and raised outside of Chanute, Kansas, in an old, one-room schoolhouse his parents bought and turned into a home in the early 1970s. Last year, he sold the country home he built by hand and migrated to Lawrence, Kansas, a place that has provided a non-stop supply of creativity, community and culture, and began settling in to an old fixer-upper on the north side of the Kaw River. To date, Smeed has self-released five full-length albums: Flying High (2002), The Front Steps (2004), Mill River (2006), Sky Smeed (2012) and Drive All Night (2015). His sixth album, Lunker Bass (released February 1, 2017), was recorded and produced at The Ninth Ward Pickin’ Parlor in Lawrence by none other than award-winning folk duo Truckstop Honeymoon (Mike & Katie West).]

(78.) Ibibio Sound Machine – Doko Mien / Merge Records / March 22, 2019
[Ibibio Sound Machine is an English electronic afro-funk band from London. Formed in 2013, the band currently consists of vocalist Eno Williams, guitarist Alfred Kari Bannerman, percussionist Anselmo Netto, drummer Jose Joyette, bassist John McKenzie, trombonist/keyboardist Tony Hayden, trumpeter/keyboardist Scott Baylis and saxophonist/keyboardist Max Grunhard. The band was formed in London 2010 by producers Max Grunhard, Leon Brichard, and Benji Bouton. The trio were interested in producing music fusing elements from 1980s afrobeat and 90s drum-and-bass. They approached singer Eno Williams to create vocals for the project. After the first sessions had been successfully finished, live musicians were added to create a full band. These included the Ghanaian guitarist Alfred Bannerman from the band KonKoma and Afro-rock band Osibisa, Brazilian percussionist Anselmo Netto, and multi-instrumentalists Tony Hayden and Scott Baylis. The band released their first single in January 2014 on Soundway, entitled Let’s Dance. Their self-titled debut album followed in March the same year. In 2016, the band signed to Merge Records to create their follow-up record. Their second album, Uyai, was released in 2017. Ibibio Sound Machine is a clash of African and electronic elements. The band claims their sound is inspired in equal measure by the golden era of West African funk and disco, modern post-punk, and electro. The name of the band itself finds influence from Eno Williams’ mother, whose native tongue was Ibibio. While Williams was born in London, she spent most of her childhood in Nigeria with the rest of her family. Her mother often recounted numerous folk and children’s stories from her own heritage and passed them on to her daughter. Williams took this inspiration and crafted lyrics from these sources and married them to modern themes.]

(79.) Calvin Arsenia – Honeydew (EP) / Center Cut Records / June 28, 2019
[On September 15, 2018 Calvin released Cantaloupe on Center Cut Records. This new EP is a remix of three of the songs from Cantaloupe, plus a Talking Heads cover that was performed live in this style at a New Year’s Eve show at The Truman opening for Making Movies who performed the entire Talking Heads album, Remain in Light. The last three songs on Honeydew were from performed in this style at The Nelson Atkins 2019 event “Party Arty.” Honeydew was produced by Jametatone, Simon Huntley, and Calvin Arsenia. Calvin Arsenia who came home to KC in 2014 after living in Edinburgh, Scotland, and has released the EPs, Moments, Prose, Cavia, and the full length debut, Catastrophe. Standing at 6 foot 6 inches, Arsenia’s powerful vocals span a 3.5 octave range, playing piano, banjo, guitar & harp. Calvin has played Folk Alliance Int., KC Fringe Fest, Apocalypse Meow, The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Kauffman Center For The Performing Arts, Middle of the Map Fest., The Folly Theatre. Last year he undertook a three month US/European Outlyre Tour playing San Francisco,Vancouver, NYC, Boston, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, Switzerland and Paris.]

(80.) Y god Y – Y god Y (EP) / High Dive Records / April 5, 2019
[Y god Y is an electronic duo from Lawrence Kansas that formed in the summer of 2017. The project consists of producer Joel Martin and singer / multi-instrumentalist, Garrett Marsh. The two write, record and produce their music entirely on their own. With only a handful of singles released, they have quickly garnered attention in the Midwest by performing with the likes of Phoenix, and at several Midwest Festivals alongside Grizzly Bear, Spoon, Lion Babe, and Leikeli47. This was also their 4th single and part of their debut 5-song EP released on High Dive Records. Garrett Marsh on vocals & Joel Martin on music, making “experimental R & B” with influences of 80’s electropop.]

(81.) Digital Leather – FEEET / Digital Leather / January 13, 2018
[“Feeet” is an eclectic compilation of mainly tape-only released songs written and recorded between 2008 and 2018. Ranging from catchy synthpop to colder dark-wave tunes, these tracks represent a dark journey, where sometimes, despair reigns freely. Sometimes hatred is the only food there is. Sometimes love is an extended nightmare. But it goes further than that. This is the 15th album release from Omaha, Nebraska based Synth punk, New Wave, pop, lo-fi, and psychedelic musical project led by multi-instrumentalist Shawn Foree. Originally from Yuma, Arizona, Foree began calling his project Digital Leather when he moved to Tucson, where he studied American Literature at University of Arizona. He used student loan money to buy equipment. He managed to release his first three albums after recording them in his bedroom on labels such as Tic Tac Totally, Jay Reatard’s Shattered Records imprint, and FDH Records. He supported this “bedroom project” with several nationwide and European tours. Sorcerer, released on Goner Records in 2008, is a half-live, half-studio record. In 2009, Foree began working on a collection of songs in a fully operational studio. Released in September 2009 by Fat Possum Records, Warm Brother garnered positive reviews. After relocating to Omaha, Nebraska, a 5-piece band formed. They toured around and as a band with synth-leads courtesy of The Faint’s Todd Fink. Digital Leather writes: “We design our shifting realities. One minute, things make sense. The next minute, we are unraveled. We must fight to create ourselves or die.” Fueled on desert energy, cheap synthesizers, and 4-track home recorders, Digital Leather began as Shawn Foree’s one-man bedroom project in Tucson, Arizona. The music was intended to be shared with a small circle of friends only. Without warning, that circle grew. Digital Leather has since moved in several stylistic directions, but has always adhered to one law: nothing lasts. Shawn Foree writes: “I just keep writing. Usually I feel like my life is passing me by while I’m holed up in my apartment hunched over a synthesizer. It’s hard to maintain relationships when you live in your head all the time. Some people will treat you like you’re crazy for having an imagination. That’s bullshit on their part, but it still sucks to be chastised for having a brain, especially when it’s from someone you care about. The payoff is worth it, though, even if you lose that someone in the process. The raw energy of honest art, to express yourself in a real way, connects you to something higher than love. Creation is a unique high and I’m addicted to it. This album spans a long period of time and represents these kind of lows and highs well. The tracks have appeared on various small run releases, but now I understand that they belong together. It feels worth it.” The band writes: “We sincerely hope this exceptional collection of dark, outsider pop music feels fresh and alive to you. At least for the time being, before the world blows up.” All music invented by Shawn Foree. Human drum sounds provided by Jeff Lambelet, Sean Ruse, and Gregory Elsasser.]

(82.) Lana Del Rey – Norman Fucking Rockwell! / Polydor Records – Interscope Records / August 30, 2019
[Elizabeth Woolridge Grant was born June 21, 1985, and she is known professionally as Lana Del Rey, an American singer and songwriter. Her music has been noted by critics for its stylized cinematic quality; its themes of tragic romance, glamour, and melancholia; and its references to pop culture, particularly 1950s and 1960s Americana. Born in New York City and raised in Upstate New York, Del Rey returned to New York City in 2005 to begin her music career. Following numerous projects including her debut studio album and the unreleased Sirens, Del Rey’s breakthrough came after the viral success of her debut single “Video Games” in 2011. She signed with Interscope and Polydor later that year. Her major label debut Born to Die (2012) proved an international success and spawned her only top-ten single on the Billboard Hot 100 with the Cedric Gervais remix of “Summertime Sadness”, as well as the internationally successful singles “Blue Jeans”, “Born to Die”, and “National Anthem”. Del Rey released the Grammy-nominated EP, Paradise in 2012. The next year, Del Rey ventured into film as she wrote, directed and starred in the short music film, Tropico, and released “Young and Beautiful” for the film The Great Gatsby (2013). Del Rey subsequently issued her sophomore major label effort, Ultraviolence (2014), to critical success, topping the charts and spawning the single, “West Coast”. That same year, Del Rey recorded the eponymous theme for Big Eyes, which garnered her both Grammy and Golden Globe nominations. Shortly afterwards, Del Rey released the critically acclaimed Honeymoon (2015) and Lust for Life (2017), the latter of which topped the charts in the U.S. and was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Album. Del Rey’s sixth studio album, Norman Fucking Rockwell, was released on August 30, 2019, to widespread acclaim. In 2019, Del Rey also released the commercially successful singles “Doin’ Time” and “Don’t Call Me Angel”, the latter being a trio with Ariana Grande and Miley Cyrus. As of 2019, Del Rey has sold over 5 million singles in the UK and has sold 5.5 million units in the US. Her YouTube and Vevo pages have combined lifetime views of 3.5 billion.]

(83.) Better Oblivion Community Center – Better Oblivion Community Center / Dead Oceans / January 23, 2019
[Better Oblivion Community Center is an American indie rock duo composed of musicians Conor Oberst and Phoebe Bridgers. Oberst and Bridgers first met in 2016 when Bridgers performed at a secret showcase Oberst hosted at the Bootleg Theater in Los Angeles. They collaborated on the duet “Would You Rather” from Bridgers’ 2017 debut album Stranger in the Alps. The duo’s album received critical acclaim upon release.They performed “Dylan Thomas” on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert the day before it’s release. On January 29, 2019, the band announced their initial concert tour of the United States and Europe along with releasing a music video for their initial single, “Dylan Thomas”, directed by Michelle Zauner a.k.a. Japanese Breakfast.]

(84.) Blue False Indigo – Around The Fire (EP) / Blue False Indigo / October 31, 2019
[This is the follw up recording to their September 7, 2018 release More Light. They call their music “Spooky-Folk.” Formed in October 2013, in Springfield, Missouri, by Makayla Scott on vocals & guitar; A.J. Valle on vocals & keys; and Kara LePage on vocals & bass. With Michael Schley on electric guitar. and McQuiston Bowes on drums. “Don’t Dream It’s Over” is a song by the Australian rock band Crowded House, recorded for their 1986 self-titled debut studio album. The song was written by band frontman Neil Finn, and released in October 1986 as the fourth single from the album.]

(85.) Deco Auto – Another Great Decision (EP) / Deco Auto / April 5, 2019
[Newest EP from Kansas City based alternative pop-punk / power-pop trio. Guitar/vocals: Steven Garcia on guitar and lead vocals, Tracy Flowers on bass & vocals, and Pat Tomek on drums. Written by Steven Garcia, $tudent Loans For Life Music (ASCAP). Recorded, and mixed and by Pat Tomek at Largely Studios, Kansas City, MO. Mastered by Gabe Fry at Kimura Studios. Produced by Steven Garcia and Pat Tomek. “Deco Auto is the perpetual opener, the also-rans, the nice-guys-finish-last band in the KC rock scene. Songwriter Steve Garcia is to blame, and he knows it. His songs straddle the line between power pop and pop punk — never casual enough for the former, nor saccharine enough for the latter.” ~ Too Much Rock]

(86.) Lovergurl – Buzzkill (EP) / Lovergurl / September 7, 2019
[Last release from Lovergurl who disbanded in September 2019 after the trio announced that their guitarist and vocalist, Heather Andrews was moving out of Kansas City to pursue her career in animation. KC based 4-piece band, Lovergurl caught our ear with their synth pop sound and lyrics reflecting social and political messages with hip hop and punk elements. The trio released their EP, The President is a Sex Offender on May 19, 2017. Keyboardist and vocalist, Stephanie Bankston was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri. She is a graduate of The University of Missouri. She moved abroad in her 20s, and lived in Seoul, Korea, where she played in a mostly female band called BaekMa (“White Horse”). Stephanie returned to Kansas City in the Fall 2015. Brook Worlledge, is a Kansas City native. She is the band’s drummer and she sings and writes songs for the band. Brook is a defender of the proletariat. Brook’s influences range from The B-52s, The Velvet Underground, and The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Lovergurl guitarist and vocalist, Heather Andrews was born and raised in Rhode Island. The band released multiple singles and two EPs.]

(87.) Black Pumas – Black Pumas / ATO / 2019
[Black Pumas are a funk and soul duo based in Austin, Texas, consisting of singer Eric Burton and guitarist/producer Adrian Quesada. Their work also has strong Latin music influences. The duo received their first Grammy nomination ever for Best New Artist at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards. The duo formed in 2017 and released their debut album, Black Pumas, on June 21, 2019. They performed at South by Southwest in 2019 and won a best new band trophy at the 2019 Austin Music Awards. On November 20, 2019, they were nominated for a Grammy Award for Best New Artist. Quesada was a member of Latin funk band Grupo Fantasma when it won the Grammy Award for Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album for the 2010 album El Existential, and when it was previously nominated for the same award in 2008 for Sonidos Gold.]

(88.) Bill Callahan – Shepherd in a Sheepskin Vest / Drag City Records / June 14, 2019
[21st release as Bill Callahan or Smog. Bill Callahan (born June 3, 1966) is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist who has also recorded and performed under the band name Smog. Callahan began working in the lo-fi genre of underground rock, with home-made tape-albums recorded on four track tape recorders. Later he began releasing albums with the label Drag City, to which he remains signed today. Callahan started out as a highly experimental artist, using substandard instruments and recording equipment. His early songs often nearly lacked melodic structure and were clumsily played on poorly tuned guitars, resulting in the dissonant sounds on his self-released cassettes and debut album Sewn to the Sky. Much of his early output was instrumental, a stark contrast to the lyrical focus of his later work. Apparently, he used lo-fi techniques not primarily because of an aesthetic preference but because he didn’t have any other possibility to make music. Once he signed a contract with Drag City, he started to use recording studios and a greater variety of instruments for his records. From 1993 to 2000, Callahan’s recordings grew more and more “professional” sounding, with more instruments, and a higher sound quality. In this period he recorded two albums with the influential producer Jim O’Rourke and Tortoise’s John McEntire, and collaborated with Neil Hagerty. Callahan also worked closely with his then-girlfriend Cynthia Dall in his early career, and they contributed vocals to each other’s albums. After 2000’s Dongs of Sevotion, Callahan began moving back to a slightly simpler instrumentation and recording style, while retaining the more consistent songwriting style he had developed over the years. This shift is apparent in albums such as Rain on Lens, Supper, and A River Ain’t Too Much to Love. Smog’s songs are often based on simple, repetitive structures, consisting of a simple chord progression repeated for the duration of the entire song. His singing is characterized by his baritone voice. Melodically and lyrically he tends to eschew the verse-chorus approach favoured by many contemporary songwriters, preferring instead a more free-form approach relying less on melodic and lyrical repetition. Themes in Callahan’s lyrics include relationships, animals, relocation, nature, and more recently, politics. On the subject of voice in his albums, Callahan has said, “It’s usually one character per record. So, the character appears in all or most of the songs on one record and then is gone. Though it makes me feel weird to talk about. Because I don’t really think in clear terms of characters. My albums as a whole could be seen as one character with many voices.” His generally dispassionate delivery of lyrics and dark irony often obfuscate complex emotional and lyrical twists and turns. Critics have generally characterized his music as depressing and intensely introverted, with one critic describing it as “a peep-show view into an insular world of alienation.” Cat Power (Chan Marshall) recorded Callahan’s song “Bathysphere” on her 1996 album What Would the Community Think and also covered another Callahan song, “Red Apples”, on her Covers Record, released in 2000. In 2007, Callahan released Woke on a Whaleheart, his first solo album released under his own name, Sometimes I Wish We Were an Eagle followed in April, 2009. Both recordings were released through Drag City, worldwide. In 2009, Callahan contributed cover songs on four separate tribute albums to Judee Sill, Kath Bloom, Chris Knox, and Merge Records. In 2010, he released his first live album Rough Travel for a Rare Thing, which was recorded in 2007 at The Toff in Melbourne, Australia. Apocalypse, was released in April 2011 to favorable reviews. Critic Sasha Frere-Jones called it “my favorite of Callahan’s albums, not because it has better songs—those are scattered among at least five others — but because it does exactly what he wants it to do: it conveys an album’s coherence.” A tour film chronicling Callahan’s 2011 Apocalypse tour was released in 2012.][Bill Callahan plays the Lawrence Public Library Lawn, Friday, July 5, at 7:00 PM at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont St, Lawrence, KS with special guest Heidi Lynne Gluck.]

(89.) Rina Mushonga – In a Galaxy / Rina Mushonga / February 15, 2019
[Rina Mushonga was born in India and raised in Harare, Zimbabwe. She attended college in the Netherlands and eventually moved to Peckham, in London, where her music career ignited. As a child she learned to play guitar and piano and began writing her own songs. She names her influences as Paul Simon, Oliver Mtukudzi, Nina Simone, and Fleetwood Mac. She started out by playing at open-mike nights in Harare. Her 2014 debut, The Wild, The Wilderness, was recorded while she was living in the Netherlands and released on Sony Music. The album contained a folk/rock-influenced sound in the vein of her early influences, but Mushonga was unsatisfied, feeling she was unable to express her authentic self. It was only after she moved to Peckham, a multiculturally rich neighborhood of London, that she felt more at home and able to explore her African heritage in music. The resulting album took five years, as she juggled making music with working and caring for her young daughter. She made a demo with Frans Verburg in Rotterdam, recorded with Brett Shaw at his studio in Peckham, and eventually released “In a Galaxy” on PIAS in 2019. The album has a rich, kaleidoscopic sound incorporating elements of Afro-pop, indie, and electro into a catchy yet experimental whole. ~ John D. Buchanan, Rovi]

(90.) Billie Eilish – When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? / Darkroom Interscope Records / March 29, 2019
[17 year old singer songwriter Billie Eilish Pirate Baird O’Connell was born December 18, 2001, and is known professionally as Billie Eilish. She was raised in Highland Park, Los Angeles to actress-musician-screenwriter Maggie Baird & Patrick O’Connell. Billie joined the Los Angeles Children’s Chorus at 8. At age 11, she began writing and singing her own songs, following her brother Finneas O’Connell, known as Finneas, an actor, musician, & producer, known for his role as Alistair in the Fox TV series Glee. Finneas was already performing his own songs with his band. In October 2015, when she was 13, Billie recorded the song “Ocean Eyes”, initially written by Finneas for his band, and sent it to her dance teacher, who hoped to choreograph a dance to it. Billie Eilish released “Ocean Eyes” on SoundCloud in 2016. A music video was released on (4/24/16), and a video of Eilish performing a dance to the song was released (11/22/16). “Ocean Eyes”, racked up over 35 million streams on Spotify. It was rereleased worldwide through Darkroom-Interscope (11/18/16). She released the singles: “Six Feet Under” (2/3/17), “Bellyache” (5/5/17) followed by her debut EP, Don’t Smile at Me (8/11/17) followed by more singles and remixes: “Bored,” “Watch,” “Copycat,” “Idontwannabeyouanymore,” “My Boy,” and “Don’t Smile at Me” (8/12/17). Billie collaborated with American rapper Vince Staples for a remix of “Watch” titled “&Burn.” For 2018 Record Store Day, Billie will release a 7″ vinyl acoustic version of “Party Favor” & acoustic version of “Hotline Bling” by Drake.]

(91.) Vedettes – EPHEMERAL (EP) / Vedettes / March 1, 2019
[Five studio-recorded and mastered tunes, recorded and mixed by Paul Malinowski from May to December 2018 at Massive Sound in Shawnee, Kansas.This Lawrence, Kansas based 4-piece band was formed in 2015 with Heather Lofflin on lead vocals & guitar; Lizz Weiler on bass, & backup vocals; Ben White on lead guitar & backup vocals. More informatin at:]

(92.) Ivy Roots – Love Art Growth (EP) / Ivy Roots Music / June 5, 2019
[New EP release from natie KC singer songwriter, who plays piano & guitar, and produces beats. This is a follow up to her 2016 full-length debut “Bad Intuition” released April 14, 2016. Ivy Roots has a style that ranges from R & B, Neo Soul, Hip Hop, Acoustic, & Pop. She has performed at Lincoln Center in NYC, Crossroads Music Fest, and with film & performance. Written & produced by Ivy. Info:]

(93.) Angel Olsen – All Mirrors / Jagjaguwar / October 4, 2019
[4th album from Angel Olsen who was born January 22, 1987. She is an American singer-songwriter and musician from St. Louis, Missouri who currently lives in Asheville, North Carolina. At age three, Olsen was adopted by a foster family that had cared for her since shortly after her birth. The difference in years between her and her parents left an impression. “Because there are so many decades of difference between us, I became more interested in what their childhood was like,” she says of her parents, both of whom still live in St. Louis. “I fantasized about what it was like to be young in the ’30s and ’50s, more so than other kids my age.” Olsen explained that “my mother just has this capacity for children.” Despite early adolescent aspirations to be a “pop star”, her interests later shifted in high school. Olsen became more introverted, regularly attending punk rock and noise music shows at the Lemp Neighborhood Arts Center and the Creepy Crawl as well as Christian rock shows throughout the city. She began learning the piano and guitar and writing her own music. Two years after graduating from Tower Grove Christian High School, Olsen moved to Chicago.After releasing her first EP, Strange Cacti, and a debut album, Half Way Home, on Bathetic Records, Olsen signed with Jagjaguwar, ahead of her first full-band record, Burn Your Fire for No Witness, which was released on February 17, 2014. Olsen’s third full-length album, My Woman, was released on September 2, 2016. In addition to her work with Bonnie “Prince” Billy and The Cairo Gang, Olsen has collaborated with a number of other notable figures of American indie rock, including Tim Kinsella of Cap’n Jazz, LeRoy Bach of Wilco and Cass McCombs. Her collaboration with Kinsella and Bach, as well as with Chicago poet Marvin Tate, resulted in the album Tim Kinsella Sings the Songs of Marvin Tate by Leroy Bach Featuring Angel Olsen which the group released on Indianapolis label Joyful Noise Recordings on December 3, 2013. Her song “Windows” was featured in the final episode of the Netflix original series 13 Reasons Why.]

(94.) Keaton Conrad – Nova / Keaton Conrad / February 1, 2019
[Keaton Conrad is a recording artist from Kansas City. He has been regarded as “exceptionally promising” (The Kansas City Star) and “making things happen on stages …with an engaging voice and passion for creating good music” (Ink Magazine). In 2015, Keaton Conrad released his debut EP, Panic & Blame, which contained five original songs that were heavily inspired by the pop rock sound he grew up on. His first full-length album, Waves, followed in January 2017 which ranged in style from pop rock to hip-hop to ambient. Conrad spent 2 years as the lead singer & keyboardist in the cover band ChangeUp, performing around KC.]

(95.) Dan Jones and The Squids – We Live In A World That Is Out Of This World / DJ&tS / December 6, 2019
[Recorded at Temple Sounds in KCMO, 2018-2019. Engineered. by JB Moreland. Produced by Dan Jones and The Squids and JB Moreland. Mastered by Tom Nunes at Atomic Disc. With Dan Jones on acoustic & electric guitars, keyboard, lead vocals + drums/bass on “Love/Life”; Matt Ronan on drums, percussion, vocals; Alex Alexander on electric guitar, vocals; Steve Tulipana on bass, vocals; Joey Slab on poem and spiel on “Beach, Please”; Scot Sperry on electric slide guitar on “Love/Life”; Donna Jones on lyrics to “The Violet Man.”]

(96.) Lincoln Marshall – Wisdom / Datura Records / October 18, 2017
[Written By: Milkdrop & Approach. Produced, Sequenced, Recorded, Mixed & Mastered By: Aikido Bray. Additional keyboards & atmosphere by Asterales, guitar by Ross Williams, horns by Miles Bonny, live drums & percussion by Aikido Bray. Artwork, Photography & Layout Design By: The Art My Life Imitates.]

(97.) Giants Chair – Prefabylon / Spartan Records / December 6, 2019
[Third album from Giants Chair who are: Scott Hobart on lead vocals & guitar, Byron Collum on bass, and Paul Ackerman on drums. Recorded, mixed, and mastered by Duane Trower at Weights & Measures Soundlab, KCMO. Scott and Byron met at the KC Art Institute in 1989. After college they moved to Collum’s hometown of Green Bay, and formed Giant’s Chair in 1993. The band moved back to Kansas City became part of the burgeoning, mid-90’s KC rock scene, sharing bills with Germbox, Season To Risk, Molly McGuire and Shiner. Shiner even named one of their songs after the band. After being signed to Caulfield Records out of Lincoln NE. on the strength of their debut 7″ single, Giant’s Chair recorded two full-length albums and toured the U.S. twice. Giant’s Chair ended in 1997 but have recently been working on new music. In 2017 they releases the singles “The Streets” and “Featureless Horizon”.]

(98.) Bedouine – Bird Songs of a Killjoy / Spacebomb / June 21, 2019
[2nd full-length album from Bedouine, aka Azniv Korkejian, a Syrian-American musician. She has lived in a number of cities and countries, including Saudi Arabia, Houston, Syria, and Boston. Bedouine released her first self-titled full-length album in 2017. The record includes sounds from her memories of her grandmother’s home in Syria, specifically on “Summer Cold” and a song written in Armenian “Louise” (which translates to “light and is written as Լոյս in Armenian). In an interview with Sound of Boston, Korkejian discussed writing the song in Western Armenian, the dialect her family speaks: “I was pretty shy about it because, like I said, my Armenian is kind of broken. But, I ran it by my cousin and kind of had his green light, and I got to a point where I just thought, even if it’s not perfect it’s okay because it’s still my experience.”]

(99.) Helkat – HelKat (EP) / Helkat / December 8, 2019
[1st single form debut 5-song EP from Kansas City based Post apocalyptic lounge punk who play “twangy queer cuddly rock,” with Helen Proctor on lead vocals & guitar, Rozz Petrozz on drums, Olive Cook on guitar and Dylan C.H. on bass. Recording engieered nd matred by Pat Tomek.]

(100.) Jo MacKenzie – Proud (EP) / Jo Mackenzie / November 17, 2018
[Debut EP from Kansas City based 16 year old singer songwriter Jo MacKenzie.]

(101.) Chloe Jacobson – Frozen Fruit / Chloe Jacobson / November 14, 2018
[It has been written that Chloe Jacobson’s “soulful, bluesy vocals are colored with the pop cadence of aughts-era emo.” Chloe’s debut album, “Frozen Fruit” was just released in a show at Mills Record Company.]

(102.) Kadesh Flow – Otaku Moods (EP) / Ryan Davis / January 25, 2019
[Kadesh Flow is Ryan Davis is a rapper with an MBA. At age 11, he began rapping and playing trombone within two weeks of one another. His music has been featured on network television in multiple countries and territories across Southeast Asia. Locally, Kadesh can be found rocking solo hip hop sets, laying down bone bars with KC funk juggernaut The Phantastics, or jamming with Marcus Lewis Big Band.]

(103.) Purple Mountains – Purple Mountains / Drag City Records / July 12, 2019
[Purple Mountains was an American indie rock project formed by musician and poet David Berman. The project debuted in May 2019, over a decade after the dissolution of Berman’s previous group Silver Jews. An eponymous album was released in July 2019. The album was recorded primarily in Chicago and produced by Jarvis Taveniere and Jeremy Earl of the band Woods. The project’s name is a mondegreen of the lyric “Purple mountain majesties” from “America the Beautiful”. The project was presumably dissolved upon Berman’s death on August 7, 2019. Berman returned to music in 2018, co-producing Yonatan Gat’s critically acclaimed album Universalists. On December 12, 2018, former Pavement and Silver Jews member Bob Nastanovich revealed on his podcast Three Songs that David Berman would release new music in 2019 under the name Purple Mountains, which was also the name of Berman’s blog. Although, his blog was also titled Menthol Mountains at times. On May 10, 2019, Berman released his first music in over a decade, a single entitled “All My Happiness Is Gone” on vinyl by Drag City, using the moniker Purple Mountains. The single included two remixes of the song, “All My Happiness Is Wrong” by Noah Count and “All My Happiness Is Long” by Mark Nevers featuring clipped recordings of Dave Cloud, and also indicated that a full-length album was a “couple months away.” It also credited Berman, Jeremy Earl and Jarvis Taveniere of Woods, Aaron Neveu and songwriter Anna St. Louis. The single was released digitally on May 17, 2019 with the announcement of a full-length album. The eponymous debut album, accompanied by a US tour, was released on July 12, 2019. “Darkness and Cold” was released as the album’s second single on June 11, 2019. “Margaritas at the Mall” was released as the album’s third and final single on June 28, 2019. A remix of “All My Happiness Is Gone” by Australian electronic music group The Avalanches, who Berman has collaborated with in the past, was commissioned by him, but a licensing issue prevented their version from being released. A few reviews: David Berman is back from his post-Silver Jews void and moving Purple Mountains onto our fruited cultural plain. His iconic literary lyrics sit astride immaculate country-rock tunes, evoking jukebox-ready disaffection with twists of pathos, comedy and tragedy – an indie poet laureate at false dusk! Stop the world! Purple Mountains’ inaugural voyage launches with a five-alarm weep-rocker – and total self-destruction never sounded so good. Amid sumptuous mellotron strings n’ galloping tom-toms, David Berman’s stone-cold account of middle age’s wild unkindnesses takes on a positively heroic glow.]

(104.) Drugs & Attics – Clean Their Room / High Dive Records / April 19, 2019
[High Dive Records debut from Kansas City based 3-piece premiere party drug rock band.]

(105.) VidCo Kult – Enrollment Opportunities : Tangential Life Trajectories Ensuring Physical and Spiritual Greatness Through the Power of Devotional Subjugation (EP) / Double Double Whammy / March 1, 2019
[VidCo Kult is a musical trio involving Bob Lyons, Tripp Kirby and Keith. They are based in KCMO. Aside from live performances of original material, they mostly argue about comic books and science fiction.]

(106.) HMPH! – HMPH! / Haymaker Records / November 15, 2019
[Ryan Lee Toms on guitar, Jonathan Thatch on drums, Kitten Adventure Boggs on bass. HMPH!’s second album, the self-titled “HMPH!” features their signature math-rock sound with a progressive rock and avant-jazz twist. The songs on HMPH! are more sprawling than on 2015’s Headrush, with lots of detours and left turns along the way. Recorded by the band in their home recording studio, the album had time to evolve, and the complicated arrangements materialized through this process. This album also features heavy basslines provided by Kitten Boggs, a significant addition since their first record. This album is a choose your own adventure of abrupt rhythm changes, dissident chords, or even about-face genre-hops into funk, punk, or samba. “HMPH!” is a different kind of album from a different kind of band.]

(107.) Moon Duo – Stars Are the Light / Sacred Bones / September 27, 2019
[Moon Duo is a psychedelic rock band from San Francisco, California formed in 2009 by Wooden Shjips guitarist Ripley Johnson and Sanae Yamada. Their debut album Mazes was released on Sacred Bones Records in 2011. The band’s style is inspired by psychedelic rock, combining repetitive rhythms and saturated guitars. Their influences include Alan Vega of Suicide, Spacemen 3 and Silver Apples. The band’s seventh full-length album, Stars Are the Light, was released on September 27, 2019.]

(108.) Lionel Limiñana & The Limiñanas – Le Bel Été / Because Music / Nov. 15, 2019
[The Limiñanas are Lionel & Marie Limiñana . They are based in Cabestany, deep south of France. They record garage, psych and pop music. Getting their start in October of 2009, The Limiñanas are the brainchild of Lio and Marie Limiñana.]

(109.) Quixotic & Calvin Arsenia – Goddess (EP) / Quixotic / May 17, 2019
[An innovative performance art collective that fuses imagination with technology, dance, projection, mapping and live music to create fully-immersive, multi-sensory experiences. Quixotic harnesses light, rhythm and expressive emotion. Quixotic was given Silicon Valley’s unofficial stamp of genius when they were invited to perform at the global TED Conference in 2012. A unique blend of performance art, technology and emotion. Quixotic fuses all these elements in to what the New York Times branded an “innovative circus performance,” and Men’s Journal declared “one of the best contemporary [cirque] acts.” They have performed for audiences worldwide and have helped launch brand products for companies such as BVLGARI, Faena Hotels, Garmin, HP, Smithsonian and Toyota. Quixotic harnesses light, rhythm and expressive emotion.]

(110.) Weyes Blood – Titanic Rising / Sub Pop Records / April 5, 2019
[Weyes Blood is Natalie Mering, born June 11, 1988, in Santa Monica, CA and grew up in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. She has released 4 albums and an EP. Both her siblings and parents are musicians and music played an important part in her upbringing. Her older brother, Zak Mering, is also a noteworthy recording artist, producer and songwriter under the “Raw Thrills” alias. At the age of 15 Mering began using the moniker Wise Blood to write songs. She changed to Weyes Bluhd on several self released records before changing the spelling to Weyes Blood. She took the name from the Flannery O’Connor novel Wise Blood. At the same time, while working on her own material, she toured the underground music scene with bands Jackie-O Motherfucker and Nautical Almanac. In 2011 she released the album The Outside Room as Weyes Blood And The Dark Juices on Not Not Fun Records. Uncut magazine described the album as “the vibe is devotional and ethereal, but with an edge”, while Beatbots found it “an impressive and ambitious album”. Natalie released her second record in October 2014 called The Innocents, which was released through Mexican Summer. In 2016 she released the album Front Row Seat to Earth on Mexican Summer to great acclaim throughout the music industry, and has spent the past few years touring throughout Europe and the states.]

(111.) Dylan Pyles – Popular Songs for the Heart / Manor Records / September 20, 2019
[Kansas City based musician, singer, songwriter, music scholar, record buyer at Mills Record Company, Dylan Pyles joined us on September 25, 2019, to share music and details on his new 20 track album, Popular Songs for the Heart, released September 20, 2019 digitally and on cassette through Manor Records. Dylan also released the 6 song EP, Solo Acoustic Guitar Vol. 1, on September 20, 2019. In December 2018 Dylan Pyles released the 19 track, experimental release, You Have a Problem but You Are Not a Problem. More info at:]

(112.) anothermaxwell – Being (EP) / anothermaxwell / June 30, 2019
[Written & Performed, Produced, Engineered, Mixed, and Cover art created by by anothermaxwell. anothermaxwell, is Shenita Hughley who studied music at Avila Collegei and graduated from Raytown South High School in 2012. anothermaxwell is a versatile singer-songwriter & producer, who reinvents new sounds by bending R&B, Pop, Funk and Electronica, genres to form a unique sound not easily categorized.]

(113.) Nilüfer Yanya – Miss Universe / ATO Records / March 22, 2019
[Debut album from British musical artist, Nilüfer Yanya who was born in 1996, the daughter of two visual artists. Yanya grew up in Chelsea, London. Growing up with her father’s Turkish music and her mother’s classical music playing at home, she soon gravitated to guitar rock and learned how to play the instrument at age 12. Informally starting her musical career with demos uploaded to SoundCloud in 2014, she turned down an offer to join a girl group produced by Louis Tomlinson of One Direction and focused on developing her own music instead. Her first EP, “Small Crimes/Keep on Calling”, was released in 2016. Her second EP, “Plant Feed”, was released in 2017, followed by “Do You Like Pain?” in 2018. Miss Universe has received wide critical acclaim, with critics noting her ability to bounce back and forth between musical and lyrical styles, shifting between “gimlet-eyed composure and cataclysmic panic”. Yanya’s music has been described as nervous and restless, combining influences from indie rock to soul, jazz, and trip hop. A Stereogum review called her voice “malleable and endlessly expressive.]

(114.) Shawn Stewart – Radio / Shawn Stewart / October 23, 2019
[Radio was recorded by Pat Tomek, Mike Moreland, and Rob Nold, with mixing, mastering, and engineering performed by Pat Tomek. Drums and most percussion- was by Pat Tomek. All songs, 2019, “Hear You” Music. Shawn Stewart started playing music in Kansas City after he moved here from Chicago in 1991. His band, “Tin Roof Echo” played venues around town through 1993 when he retired to the suburbs to raise a family as a “stay at home dad.” In 2014, after his kids were grown, he moved midtown to pick up where he left off. He released four albums under the moniker, “JohnnySuperColossal”. In September he’s taking his trailer to Nashville for three months then to Los Angeles for three months to pursue music publishers and radio.]

(115.) Sharon Van Etten – Remind Me Tomorrow / Jagjaguary / January 18, 2019
[5th studio album from Sharon Van Etten (born February 26, 1981 in Belleville, New Jersey and lived in Nutley, NJ before moving to Clinton as a pre-teen. Later, she moved to Tennessee to attend Middle Tennessee State University and studied recording, but dropped out of college after a year. Van Etten ended up working at the Red Rose, a coffee and record shop and music venue in Murfreesboro, for about five years. In 2004, she moved back to New Jersey, where she worked at Perryville Wine and Spirits. Van Etten moved to New York City in 2005. Van Etten self-released handmade CDs until 2009, when her debut studio recording was released. Before her studio debut, she worked at Astor Wines and as a publicist at Ba Da Bing Records. Van Etten’s debut, Because I Was in Love, was released on May 26, 2009, on Language of Stone, and was manufactured and distributed by Drag City. This is her third album from Jagjaguar]

(116.) The Bad Ideas – Happiness / The Bad Ideas / March 30, 2019
[The Bad Ideas are: Britt Adair on guitar, Breaka Dawn on vocals, Matt Roberts on bass, and Way Jillis on drums. The Bad Ideas is an American punk band from Kansas City, Missouri formed in August 2011. They’ve written all original songs and are influenced by post-hardcore, punk, and early 80’s punk. Their EP, Worse Thoughts, was recorded on January 22, 2012 and released March, 2012. Their first self-produced full length, Lesson #1 was released March 8, 2013. The Bad Ideas also released a 7″ split with Red Kate on March 31, 2014. Their most recent release is a full length cassette, “Leave Me Alone.” Released in June 6, 2015.]

(117.) Sinkane – Dépaysé / City Slang / May 31, 2019
[7th Album from Sinkane (born Ahmed Abdullahi Gallab in London, England in 1983. He is a Sudanese-American musician who blends krautrock, prog rock, electronica, free jazz and funk rock with Sudanese pop. Born to college professors in London, he lived in Sudan, then moved to the US when he was five, and lived for some time in Ohio. Prior to embarking on his solo career, he worked with Eleanor Friedberger, Caribou, of Montreal, Born Ruffians, and Yeasayer as a session musician. Ahmed Gallab is the vocalist and music director of the Atomic Bomb! Band which plays the music of Nigerian funk musician William Onyeabor. The group includes David Byrne (of Talking Heads), Money Mark (of the Beastie Boys), Damon Albarn (of Blur and Gorillaz), Dev Hynes (aka Blood Orange and Lightspeed Champion), Alexis Taylor (of Hot Chip), Charles Lloyd, Amadou and Mariam, Jamie Lidell, Pharoah Sanders, Joshua Redman, among many many others.]

(118.) Y La Bamba – Mujeres / Tender Loving Empire / February 8, 2019
[Mujeres is “Woman Island” in the Gulf of Mexico. Y La Bamba has been many things, but at the heart of it is singer-songwriter Luz Elena Mendoza’s inquisitive sense of self. Their fifth record, Mujeres, carries on the Portland-based band’s affinity for spiritual contemplation, but goes a step further in telling a story with a full emotional spectrum. Coming off Ojos Del Sol, one of NPR’s Top 50 Albums of 2016, Mujeres exhibits the scope of Mendoza’s artistic voice like never before. “Soy como soy,” Mendoza says, and that declaration is the bold— even political— statement that positions Mujeres to be Y La Bamba’s most unbridled offering yet.]

(119.) Tituss Burgess – Saint Tituss (EP) / Tituss Ink / July 26, 2019
[Tituss Burgess was born February 21, 1979. He is an American actor and singer. He has appeared in numerous Broadway musicals. He is best known for starring as Titus Andromedon on the Netflix comedy series Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (2015–2019), for which he has received four consecutive Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series nominations. Born and raised in Athens, Georgia, he attended Cedar Shoals High School where he was active in the theatre program. He graduated from the University of Georgia with a BA in music. He is openly gay. Burgess made his Broadway debut in the musical Good Vibrations as Eddie in 2005, and then appeared in Jersey Boys in 2005 as Hal Miller. He originated the role of “Sebastian the Crab” in the musical The Little Mermaid in 2007 and went on to the role of Nicely-Nicely Johnson, traditionally played by a white actor, in the revival of Guys and Dolls in 2009. He has also performed in several regional theater productions, including The Wiz and Jesus Christ Superstar. Burgess performed at the “Broadway for Obama” benefit concert held at the State Theatre Center for the Arts in Easton, Pennsylvania on October 20, 2008. He appeared in Season 5 of 30 Rock as D’Fwan, a member of Tracy Jordan’s wife’s entourage. He reprised the role in Season 6. “45” is the first track off Burgess’ first album in seven years, Saint Tituss. Described by the artist as his “deepest and most soul-searching” work to date. He told “… given the political climate, I think it’s time to speak out. I fear for our country. I fear for how our country treats its citizens and I fear for how our citizens treat each other. It’s a larger problem than just legislation. I didn’t know how to respond, so I just started with art.”]

Wednesday MidDay Medley’s 39 Favorite Singles of 2019

1. NuBlvckCity – “All Night”/”Alive” – Single / NuBlvckCity / July 12, 2019
[NuBlvckCity is a KC-based music collective with Kartez Marcel (Addison), a native of Kansas City, Missouri, a Hip-Hop artist, and community program developer, sound engineer, entrepreneur, recording artist, musician, and songwriter. He provides resources to artists and assists with bringing their artistic visions to life, he also serves as the Director of A/V at a large faith-based organization. With Royce “Sauce” Handy he founded We Are Rap a hip hop program for youth. VP3 (Vernon Percy Howard III) is a Music Producer, Songwriter, Singer, Pianist, & Saxophonist. He recently gradualted from the University of Central Missouri where he studied digital media production. Mae C is a singer/songwriter who’s one of KC’s go-to voices and performer’s. Mae C is a KC based singer songwriter who we’ve played several times on the show. Her single “Anxious” was preceeded by her EP, Warning Sign of True Love. Influenced by Hip Hop, Rock, Jazz, Soul & R&B, Mae C is making her mark as an artist in the KC music scene. Royce “Sauce” Handy is a rapper, a songwriter, a beat maker, a designer, a teacher, an MC, a business owner, a social media manager, a husband, a father., a community organizer. He has worked with the AdHoc Group Against Crime, Teens in Transition, Storytellers Inc., Arts Tech, Mid-America Regional Council, UMKC, Rep. Brandon Ellington, Mayor Sly James. He is co-owner of The Rap Asylum, We are RAP, and owner of Melanin Connoisseur.]

2. The Freedom Affair – “Rise Up” / Colemine / June 21, 2019 [7″ Vinyl]
[The Freedom Affair is a project of Chris Hazelton of Sunflower Soul Records and Chris Hazelton’s Boogaloo 7. The band includes members of the Boogaloo 7 with members of Instant Karma and three of the KC area’s leading vocalists. The Freedom Affair is: Misha Roberts on vocals, Seyko Groves on vocals, Paula Saunders on vocals, Cole Bales on guitar, Branden Moser on guitar, Chris Hazelton on bass, Dave Brick on drums, Pete Carroll on trumpet, and Brett Jackson on saxophone. The Freedom Affair and their track “Rise Up” were selected to be part of Colemine Records 3xLP box set, “Soul Slabs Vol. 2” a Record Store Day Exclusive, released April 13, 2019. Colemine Records writes: “The Freedom Affair is a freight train of Kansas City soul! Dirty, funky drums, gritty horns, and the combined vocals of Misha Roberts, Seyko Groves, and Paula Saunders to put this band over the top. Politically charged soul music for the dancefloor!”]

3. Shy Boys – “Dim The Light”/”Brick By Brick” / Polyvinyl / Feb. 15, 2019
[Single release follow up to band’s 2nd album and Polyvinyl debut, Bell House. Shy Boys line-up consists of brothers Collin Rausch and Kyle Rausch, Konnor Ervin, Kyle Little and Ross Brown. Kyle Rausch and Konnor Ervin were already band mates in the indie-pop band The ACBs and Collin had been playing for years in the Kansas City area in various bands. The three shared a love for 1960s era pop rock and soon started writing their own music. In 2014 they released the self-titled Shy Boys on High Dive Records. The album received generally positive reviews and the single “Bully Fight” was featured on In June 2014 the band recorded and released two more singles and one of them, “Life Is Peachy,” was featured on Stereogum. On April 4th, 2018, it was announced that the band had signed to Polyvinyl Record Co.]

4. The Philistines – “Further” / The Philistines / March 15, 2019
[New music from The Philistines, that will be part of the upcoming album Dysnomia. Produced and engineered by paul Malinowski at Massive Sound Studios. The Philistines are a Kansas City based rock band with a psychedelic bent, made up of: Kimmie Queen on lead vocals; Cody Wyoming on lead guitar & vocals; Rod Peal on guitar; Josh Mobley on keyboard, Steve Gardels on drums, and Barry Kidd on bass.]

5. Broken Heart Syndrome – “Dolly (and other unfinished business)” /BHS/ 9-13-19
[Kansas City based supergroup Broken Heart Syndrome, is Matthew Roth (of Schwervon!, Major Matt Mason USA) on songwriting, vocals & guitar, Pat Tomek (of The Rainmakers) on drums & percussion, Dave Tanner (of The Depth and The Whisper) on bass and backing vocals, Todd Granthem (of The Quivers) on keyboards. This recording was engineered and co-produced by Pat Tomek at Level Stage in KC, MO. Dolly (and other unfinished business) is the second official Broken Heart Syndrome release. Matthew Roth writes, “This track was inspired by the autobiography of Dolly Parton. Many years ago, while I was still living in New York, I took part in a very ambitious singer-songwriter night that is put on by my friend Susan Hwang, called the Bushwick Book Club. It’s still going on, as far as I know. Basically, you read a book and then you write a song about it. The book was Dolly Parton’s: My Life and Other Unfinished Business. I was having a hard time tracking down a copy of the book and luckily my friend Diane Cluck just so happened to have it on tape. It was an actual cassette tape. So, yeah turns out Dolly Parton had a pretty amazing life. It was great to hear her voice telling her own story. There were several points where I felt very moved and even connected to her story. I tried to take some of those parts and channel them as inspiration for the lyrics. It’s like a little secret message from me to her. I don’t think most people would be able to tell what the song is about if I didn’t tell them. I’m pretty positive that she’ll probably never hear it but it’s a really fun way to write a song.”]

6. Brandon Phillips & The Condition – “Angel Say No” / “People Talk” / Too Much Rock / April 13, 2019
[The group is inspired by Elvis Costello and the “girl groups” of Motown Records. This is a project of Brandon Phillips (The Architects, The Gadjits, Other Americans) and features an ensemble cast that includes: Adam Phillips, Zachary Phillips, Brent Kastler, Julie Berndsen along with other musicians from other bands. The B-side of this vinyl-only, limited-run record is a hand selected cover of Tommy Tutone’s “Angel Say No”– as near a perfect power-pop deep-cut as one is likely to find in even the dustiest record bin in it’s original version, here re-amplified by a crack rhythm section and wedded to the Ronettes-worshiping vocal style for which BP+C are known. Too Much Rock, is a music site created by Sid Sowder in 1997, to share his original photographs, video, and commentary, of the live music shows he attends. Too Much Rock also hosts a musical podcast. Several years ago Sid Sowder created the Too Much Rock – Singles Series, a collection of 45 rpm 7″ singles, featuring an original song from a band, with a cover song, chosen by Too Much Rock. 500 limited edition copies are pressed by Too Much Rock and given to the band. Kansas City based bands, Schwervon!, Rev Gusto, Josh Berwanger Band, The Uncouth, Hipshot Killer, Witch Jail, Red Kate, and Heidi Lynn Gluck have all recorded for the Too Much Rock Single Series. ]

7. The Moose – “Through The Rainbow”/”Bell-Bottom Trees” / The Moose / 11-10-19
[The Moose is an alternative band from Lee’s Summit, formed in 2016 by Jake Hilger, Alex Huffman, and Tyler Frey with Emma Klein and Parker Tozier joining in 2016. The Moose released their debut full length album, The First Real Encounter, on Dec. 21, 2018. The Moose joined us LIVE on WMM on July 10, 2019.]

8. Claire Adams – “Better Luck” / Claire Adams / September 20, 2019
[Musically curious and multifaceted, Claire Adams has spent more than a decade touring, recording and songwriting to hone her melodic instincts and vision. A bassist, guitarist, singer and songwriter, Adams has lent a discerning ear and versatility to a number of projects. 2019 finds Adams collaborating with the KC based string quartet Rewound, jazz pianist Alyssa Murray & drummer Fritz Hutchinson. Recorded at The Blue House in Kansas City, MO. Additional tracking at MARZ Studios in Nederland, TX. Mixed & mastered at Weights + Measures Soundlab in KCMO. Written by Claire Adams, with Claire Adams on guitars, bass, and vocals; Alyssa Murray on keyboards & vocals; and Fritz Hutchison on drums & vocals.]

9. Black Stacey – “Lose The Peace” / Sharaden Staten / May 16, 2019
[This song will be included in Black Stacey’s upcoming EP, “Lose the Peace.” Co-produced/mixed/mastered by Joel Nanos at Element Studios. The track features Julia Hail of Hi-Lux; Christine Grossman, principal violist of the Kansas City Symphony; and Michael Raehpour and Grant Morgan on horns. “The record tells the story of a relationship between father and daughter, and with this track giving the back story and possible end of said relationship, it only makes sense that it’s Black Stacey’s most involved song to date.” We first played an unmastered version of this song on March 13, 2019. Black Stacey is Sharaden Staten, a Missouri native, who release his album “Electric Church” in 2017. Part of WMM’s The 117 Best Recordings of 2017. Sharaden, a 25-year-old, having grown up in the back woods of central Missouri, and couch surfed his way into the KC metro, pairs subtle notes of R&B, funk, soul, and rock; dramatically blending it into a raw eclectic mix. In 2015 Sharaden began writing, recording and producing Black Stacey’s debut, “Electric Chariot”. A project that has given him a solid foundation in the KC music scene, gaining him spots on local radio and the opportunity to work with producer Joel Nanos. More info at:]

10. Serene Fiend – “Unto Myself” / Vitality Records / July 10, 2019
[Industrial pop-rock project from Lawrence, Kansas based Joel Bonner. All instruments programmed and performed by Joel Bonner. Synth solo programmed and performed by Daniel Glascock. Written, recorded, mixed, and mastered by Joel Bonner.]

Special Note: Every year we carry over a single that was released so late in the previous year that we may have missed it in our playlists. This year we carried over a song from last year’s “Best Singles List.” We did this as a tribute to one of our favorite area groups Lovergurl that disbanded in September 2019 after the trio announced that their guitarist and vocalist, Heather Andrews was moving out of Kansas City to pursue her career in animation. We love this band, and their music, and the spirit of protest that is righteously infused into all of their songs. We want more bands like this band, especially during these absolutely crazy times we a living through. Look for Lovergurl’s last recording, their EP “Buzzkill” in WMM’s 119 Best Recordings of 2019 during our 4-week series in December.

11. Lovergurl – “Rebel” / Lovergurl / September 14, 2018
[Recorded and mastered with RLT at Audibly Recording. KC based 4-piece band, Lovergurl caught our ear with their synth pop sound and lyrics reflecting social and political messages with hip hop and punk elements. The trio released their EP, The President is a Sex Offender on May 19, 2017. Keyboardist and vocalist, Stephanie Bankston was born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri. She is a graduate of The University of Missouri. She moved abroad in her 20s, and lived in Seoul, Korea, where she played in a mostly female band called BaekMa (“White Horse”). Stephanie returned to Kansas City in the Fall 2015. Brook Worlledge, is a Kansas City native. She is the band’s drummer and she sings and writes songs for the band. Brook is a defender of the proletariat. Brook’s influences range from The B-52s, The Velvet Underground, and The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Lovergurl guitarist and vocalist, Heather Andrews was born and raised in Rhode Island.]

12. No Such Beast – “Drifter” / No Such Beast / June 17, 2019
[Debut single from KC based Indie Folk 5-piece with strings of bass, violin, banjo, guitar, & cello from: Abby Atwood, Adriana Williamson, Colton Pittman, & Olivia Atwood, and lead vocals from Issac Walker.]

13. Kat King – “Song From Spain” / Kat King / February 9, 2019
[Lawrence Kansas based singer songwriter Kat King released her last single “2017” October 18, 2018. She released her 5-song EP “Falling Up” on December 1, 2017. Kat King has been creating music since the 2nd grade. She’s produced one 13-song album and three EP’s, the first one released at the age of 14. ]

14. The Fey – “Lost in My Head” / The Record Machine / August 2, 2019
[New single and follow to the band’s July 13, 2018 EP Strawberry Lemonade. The Fey is a Rock/Soul sextet based in Lincoln, Nebraska. The band has created 3 EP’s under the alias “AZP”, but have recently made a name change to, The Fey. Charles Hull, Founder and Managing Director, Silver Street Records writes, The Fey is: Zach Watkins on lead/backup vocals, keys, percussion; Ishma Valenti on rap vocals; Trey Shotkoske on drums; Michael Rogers on guitars; John Fucinaro on bass, and Ludwing Siebenhor. Additional Backup vocals by Jasmin Ondap and Aly Millanes. Engineered and mixed by James Fleege at Silver Street. Mastered by Doug Van Sloun at Focus Mastering. Produced by Zach Watkins and James Fleege at Silver Street. Album art by Zach Watkins]

15. Mild Cats – “Keep The Cat Out of The Fire”/”Conversation”/ Mild Cats/ 2-14-19
[Recorded at Parrot Ice Studios, The Tinsel Room, and a secret attic no one can ever know about. Patrick Keizer on guitar & vocals & keyboards, Christina Silvius on viola, Wade Conyers on bass, Quinn Hernandez on drums, Davy Langerak on percussion, and Josiah Hunter on guitar.]

16. Pala Zolo – “Up Northern” / The Record Machine / February 8, 2019
[Pala Zolo is the instrumental electronic project of Lawrence, KS musician Eric Davis. In Pala Zolo, Davis blends synthesizers and drum machines with live instruments to create his blend of cinematic pop music. He chose the name to pay homage to his Sicilian heritage by naming the project after a small Sicilian village he spent time in while studying abroad in Italy. Pala Zolo allows Davis the full freedom to experiment in ways that are a departure from his main gig as the keyboard player in buzzy up-and-coming rock band Hembree (Thirty Tigers, Oread Records). // The inspiration for Pala Zolo came from a chance meeting with fellow electronic musician, Tycho’s Scott Hansen. One day while working at The Granada Theater in Lawrence, Davis was given the job of being Hansen’s driver. For years Davis had been writing and recording his own demos and was completely unsure of what to do with them. After spending the entire day with Hansen and seeing him perform, Davis realized he could bring his incomplete ideas to life in his own unique way. Seeing an instrumental band perform such an emotionally charged set inspired Davis to finish his songs without traditional vocals and to begin creating his own sound in that genre. // Soon after, Davis set forth to finalize the recordings with his good friend and producer Joel Martin (Y god Y). The two of them spent countless hours experimenting with synthetic and acoustic textures to create perfect soundscapes to compliment Davis’ intricately arranged compositions. In 2018, Davis self-released singles House Plant & 40K, and continued to take Pala Zolo to another level by performing live with drummer Gerardo Rojas. The duo brings the songs to life with live synths, guitars and drums and has been resonating with audiences.]

17. Jake Wells – “Wanted To Love You” / Sound 81 Productions / May 18, 2019
[Kansas City based indie folk singer songwriter. Jake Wells was born in Florida grew up in Colorado. Jake studied Music Composition at University of Northern Colorado. “Jake’s sound evokes an emotionality and maturity much deeper than his age of 22 would imply.” He was named one of Spotify’s top 20. He has performed on stages since he was a teenager. His single releases are currently gaining radio play in the Midwest on several FM stations.]

18. Middlechild – “October 31st” / Oakwood Records / May 24, 2019
[Middlechild is the debut single from Kansas City, Missouri singer Middlechild, which is the Danzell Capers, formerly in the band Brother, who released a single called “Mobbin” that was included in a very fine compilation release series from our friends at The Record Machine called “How To Keep Dreaming: Vol. III,(2016), featuring 28 tracks from bands and artists from the KC, Lawrence, and surrounding areas.]

19. Me Like Bees – “Heartbeats”/ Me Like Bees / August 2, 2019
[Formed in Joplin in 2009 by Luke Sheafer, Nick Bynum, Pete Burton, Tim Cote. In 2015 after completing a leg in Van’s Warped Tour, Me Like Bees finished their new EP with award-winning producer, John Feldmann (Five Seconds of Summer, The Used, Panic! at the Disco, Goldfinger, Good Charlotte, Plain White T’s)]

20. Nick Carswell – “The Wave (A Reckoning)” / Silly Goose / May 7, 2019
[The featured single from “Changing Shades”, a solo project by Nick Carswell.
All music & lyrics by Nick Carswell. Produced by Nick Carswell. Additional mixing by Jason Slote. Songwriter Nick Carswell is originally from Limerick, Ireland, Nick Carswell has been living in Lawrence, KS since 2011. He formed Carswell & Hope in late 2012. The band released their debut album in 2014, coinciding with a two week Irish tour. Nick also plays bass in the electro-pop band Pink Royal and is the force behind Silly Goose Records and the annual MixMaster music conference, now part of the Crossroads Music Festival. Nick Carswell joined us on May 8, 2019 to share details about Changing Shades – Stories of Migration, Confusion & Belonging told in Image & Song in a solo performance of 10 songs, accompanied by lighting, projection and stage design, Friday, May 10, at The Irish Center of KC, 19 West Linwood Blvd. AND Saturday, May 11, at Lawrence Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire St., Lawrence, KS. More info at]

21. Momma’s Boy – “Sugar” / Manor Records / May 3, 2019
[Recorded and mixed by Ross Brown of Shy Boys/Fullbloods and mastered by Mike Nolte at Eureka Mastering. The song features Peter Beatty on lead vocals and lyric writing. Momma’s Boy hails from Kansas City, based band with Quinn Hernandez on the drums, Jared Bajkowski on bass, Peter Beatty’ on guitar, Shaun Crowley on guitar. The band also features three singers, as Peter, Shaun and Jared rotate on lead vocals.]

22. The Dear Misses – “Kansas City” / The Dear Misses / February 25, 2019
[Kansas City based 4-piece band made up of: Todd Anderson on lead vocals & rhythm guitar, Cody Stapleton on lead guitar & backing vocals, Bret Collins on drums, and Shane Berggren on bass. The band is currently in the studio recording songs for their upcoming release. More information at:

23. Stephonne Singleton – “Want Me” / Glory Blue Music / April 26, 2019
[Co-produced by, Justin Mantooth, and recorded at Westend Recording Studios. Johnny Hamil on bass, Ben Byard on guitar and Adam McKee on drums. Stephonne grew up in KCK. He released his debut album, “Caged Bird Sings Songs About Red Beard.” The album was one of WMM’s 118 Best Recordings of 2018. Stephonne was born and raised in Wyandotte County, Kansas. He has performed in multiple shows for Late Night Theatre. Stephonne told John Long of Camp Magazine “I was surrounded by records, and my parents always had music on.” He expects to move more toward releasing singles rather than entire albums.]

24. Instant Karma – “Tell Me That You Love Me” / Instant Karma / June 22, 2019
[Instant Karma features Cole Bales on vocals & guitar, Cody Calhoun on guitar, Branden Moser on bass, Zach Harris on drums. With Caitlin Walker and Grace Sakoulas Griffin-Spain on Background Vocals. Instant Karma will play their last live show on Saturday, June 22, at recordBar, for SoundMachineKC with Pink Royal, and The Maytags. More info at:]

25. Scott Hrabko & The Rabbits – “Pretty Good Day” / Scott Hrabko / 11-3-19
[Scott Hrabko’s new single, available online Nov. 3. For this single the Rabbits were Jason Beers, Gary Paredes and Havilah Bruders. On Febrary 14, 2019 Scott Hrabko released the EP Smash Hits From A Parallel Universe with Scott Hrabko on lead vocals, backing vocals, acoustic 6 and 12 string guitar, electric guitar, keyboards, & percussion; Jason Beers on bass guitar; Tim Higgins on drums, Marco Pascolini on junior electric guitar. Scott called this release: 4 songs for the new age of anxiety. Scott Hrako & The Rabbits released “Summer” in 2017, and “Biscuits and Gravity” in 2015. Scott Hrabko’s 2013 critically acclaimed solo release, “Gone Places” was said to be 30 years in the making. Singer-songwriter Scott Hrabko has played with KC’s oldest garage band The Original Sinners, as well as various incarnations of the 1980s bands: The Splinters, and The Andersons. In the early 1990s Scott performed as a solo artist in coffee houses with Iris Dement and Howard Eisberg.]

26. Carswell & Hope – “On My Way” / Silly Goose Records / October 25, 2019
[New song from band with a new video. Last year on May 22, 2018 Carswell & Hope released the critically acclaimed EP Exit Plan with music by Carswell & Hope. Lyrics by Nick Carswell. Produced & mixed by Jason Slote & Nick Carswell. Mastered by Michael Fossenkemper @ TurtleTone Studio NYC. Lawrence KS based 5-piece band formed June 25, 2012. The band is: Nick Carswell, Jason Slote, Austin Quick, Chris Handley, and Jordan Tucker. Songwriter Nick Carswell is originally from Limerick, Ireland and has found a new home on the plains of Kansas. Nick has been living in Lawrence, KS since 2011. He formed Carswell & Hope in late 2012. The band released their debut album in 2014, coinciding with a two week Irish tour. Nick also plays bass in the electro-pop band Pink Royal and is the force behind Silly Goose Records and the annual MixMaster music conference, now part of the Crossroads Music Festival.]

27. Oxford Remedy – “Vending Machine” / Oxford Remedy / January 12, 2019
[Lawrence/KC 3-piece band formed in June 2016. Members include: Sydney Aldridge, Kate McKown, and Grace McKown. More indo at]

28. Jean Claude and the Eclairs – “Glasgow.” /Jean Claude and the Eclairs/ 4-4-19
[Alternative Pop/Rock trio based in Lawrence, KS formed by Cooper Scott, Garrison Krotz and Quinn Maetzold in June of 2016.]

29. Thighmaster – “Aerobicise” / High Dive Records / August 9, 2019
[Debut single from Thighmaster a Lawrence, Kansas based band formed by Maxfield Yoder (formerly of the bands: Dean Monkey & the Dropouts, Plains) on guitar & vocals, Max Lock on vocals, Max Smith on tambourine & vocals, Esteban Gomez –on bass, Jennifer Graham on drums, and Jake Little on guitar.Thighmaster recently signed with KC based label High Dive Records. The band is resurrecting the song-writing demons that have long haunted Mayfield Yoder. Thighmaster truly is garage pop for cool grandparents. Now you too can have shapely thighs in minutes a day. “Aerobicise” was Tracked, Mixed and Mastered by Ross Williams and written by Thighmaster.]

30. Bad Alaskan – “Strange Fruit” / Bad Alaskan / August 17, 2019
[Bad Alaskan is Lawrence, Kansas based musician, scientist, researcher, speaker, activist, teacher, Alex Kimball Williams who also plays in the band UltraVivid. Bad Alaskan writes: “This cover of ‘Strange Fruit’ is the perfect blend of old school & new school; direct reference & innovation; the blues & electronic. I’ve always loved the song & wanted to put my own indigenous spin on it. My classical & jazz training leaks through with solos & alterations to the lead melody. The 1939 recording featuring Billie Holiday’s vocals is my favorite cut of this classic. My variation alters the melody to fit a minor blues scale. The key is raised just slightly to stimulate discomfort, the tempo is more upbeat. Originally when she sang the song, it was always the end of her set, staff in the venue was instructed not to make any transactions. She would sing the song with eyes closed. Due to that devotional, prayer-like feel, I begin my sets with this song if I’m going to include it. I read somewhere that this song reminded her of her father. It lines up with my thoughts on my own ancestors, from what would have been his time. Instruments used are Korg Minilogue, Microkorg (vocoding) & Novation circuit. I always record all my parts at once (no over-dubbing), so please enjoy the “fruits” of my labor! Audio engineer: Ross Williams.]

31. Remy Styrk – “Winter/Summer” / Remy Sryrk / February 28, 2019
[20 year old Remy Stryk lives in Leawood Kansas. Originally from Newark, New Jersey. This multi instrumentalist has been writing & recording music for several years. About this new single Remy tells us “It represents the two major seasons and personifies them to create a feeling of trust, anger, love, uncertainty, inspiration and comfort. I wanted them to be applicable to many people’s situations in life, no matter who they are or what they believe in. This song is about universal feelings that connect us as one and value our ability to feel and express.” Last year Remy released “In Too Deep” one of 5 singles Remy has released in the last 2 years. Remy Styrk released the EP Sunday, on Jan 25, 2018 a follow up to the Aug 12, 2015 full length album, Telling Stories Through The Basement Door.]

32. LyMerrick – “Lay Me Down” / nightSHIFT Radio / February 8, 2019
[One of three singles released by LyMerrick this year. LyMwrrick released six singles last years and was a featured voice on two other songle releases. LyMerrick also released a songle in 2016. LyMerrick was born in North Carolina but grew up in Kansas City, MO since the age of 8. LyMrrick grew up listening to all types of music ranging from gospel, rap, r&b, to classic rock and metal. LyMerrick started singing in the church choir and continued singing in elementary, Middle and High School choirs. After High School LyMerrick began to record remixes and eventually began to make originals which led me his collaborations with “nightSHIFT”.]

33. Akkilles- “By Myself” / David Bennett / November 1, 2019
[Akkilles is the music project of David Bennett. I make music under Akkilles. He also helps other people make music. For this recording: David Bennett on guitars, David Bennett & Ian Thompson on keyboards, David Bennetton bass, David Bennett on synthesizer, David Bennett on vocals, Bryan Koehler on drums. Mixed and edited by David Bennett. Mastered by Dedric Moore. Artwork by Matt Schmitz. Recorded at: Aorist Studios in Kansas City. This one of three single Akkilles has released this year. “Meet in the Middle” was released October 25, 2019. “Feelin’ My Self” was released February 1, 2019. Akkilles released the critically acclaimed debut record “Something You’d Say” on July 2, 2013.]

34. Soultru – “Must Be” / The Record Machine / August 24, 2019
[Drums and Piano by Kierstyn Graham, Vocals by Terrance Banks. Singer, songwriter, poet and emcee Terrance A Banks aka Soultru is a native of Davenport, Iowa and is currently based out of the Quad Cities area of NW Illinois/NE Iowa. Combining his poetic and lyrical talents with a soulful voice, Soultru has forged his own unique sound. Soultru credits a wide range of influences, including Gavin Degraw, John Legend, Yelawolf and Son Little.]

35. Shah – “Wanna Be” / SHAH / May 20, 2018
[19 year-old, singer, songwriter & dancer from Lawrence, KS. Influenced by Chris Brown, Justin Bieber and Kehlani. From a young age SHAH’s been drawn to the stage, modeling, acting, & performing in competitive talent shows. SHAH introduces bold experiments of sounds & lyrics while merging modern-day Pop with nostalgic bits of early 2000’s R&B. SHAH is passionate about addressing stereotypical views of black male artists & hyper-masculinity. He hopes to drive a more compassionate & accepting society by way of his unapologetic image & sound. SHAH is currently working in the studio. For more info:]

36. Russell Brixey – “Midnight Swim (Feat. Lauren Flynn) /R. Brixey/ 7-30-19
[Russell Brixey is the musical solo project of Ryan Wallace. Ryan Wallace has played with many groups over the years: Heroes and Villains, The Republic Tigers, and JAENKI. This is his first solo single “Midnight Swim” and features the vocals of Lauren Flynn from the band Olivia Fox. Hear Russell Brixey talk about “Midnight Swim” at

37. Belle & The Vertigo Waves – “Fear or Faith” / Drop Out Records / 6-7-19

[New single from Belle & The Vertigo Waves, the sonic brainchild of Belle Loux. She resides in Kansas City, MO, and is slowly attempting world domination. Members include Belle Loux on lead vocals, Jeremiah Scott on bass, John Loux on guitar. The band’s debut full length album”Aligned” was released on October 6, 2017.]

38. Los Santos Caballeros – “The Chase” / “The Walk” / Sunflower Soul – Groove King / Nov. 8, 2019
[Engineering by Justin Mantooth & Chris Hazelton, Mixing by Chris Hazelton, Branden Moser on guitar, Colby Bales on bass, Zach Dodson on drums, Nick Howell on trumpet, Brett Jackson on saxophone, Chris Hazelton on organ for “Side B”, Pat Conway on congas & Timbales for “Side A”. This is a project that Cole Bales and Branden Moser conceived a couple of years ago. The idea is that the tracks are part of a soundtrack to a fictional film called Chico is the Man that harkens back to the exploitation films of the 70s (i.e. Super fly, Dolemite, Black Caesar). Side A is the chase sequence, side B the introduction to the villain of the story. This is a collaboration between Chris Hazelton’s Sunflower Soul and Groove King Records]

39. Appropriate Grammar – “King Of Silent Sounds” / Never Records / January 7, 2019
[Music and lyrics by Nick McKenna. Arranged by Appropriate Grammar. Engineered, mixed and mastered by Ted Riderer of Never Records – Kansas City, MO. Photo by Anna Selle. Cover design by Claire Adams and Steve Gardels. Appropriate Grammar is a Kansas City based band formed in July 2010 with Nick McKenna on guitar & vocals, Alex Dunsford on lead guitar, Claire Adams on bass & vocals, and Steve Gardels on drums. This recording was a collaboration between Appropriate Grammar, Never Records and Open Spaces KC. Never Records is a mobile record-making lab, using recording equipment and a vinyl record lathe to cut 2, four-minute records on the spot. New York artist and musician Ted Riederer launched Never Records in 2010 as part of a collaborative project with curators No Longer Empty in the former sales floor of Tower Records’ fabled East Village flagship store. One year later, Never Records had expanded to become a mobile record-making lab, using recording equipment and a vinyl record lathe to cut two, four-minute records on the spot for whoever walks in the door (one copy stays behind in the fast-growing library). Never Records opened August 25, 2018 as part of Open Spaces Kansas City, and runs through October 28th, 2018, in a storefront space in the Crossroads district of Kansas City. The space is located at 1611 Oak St., KCMO. The exhibition was open Wednesday – Sunday, with workshops and special events. Never Records is a combination recording studio and record shop, all operating in one building. The sole proprietor, interior decorator, and engineer is New York-based artist Ted Riederer. Inspired by his own redemptive education at a young age inside the walls of a local record store in Rockville, Maryland as well as the field recording projects of Alan Lomax, Riederer devised his unique community art installation in the early part of this century and has been replicating it with regional variations throughout the world since 2010. Performers from a locale sign up for recording sessions ahead of time, with no auditions necessary. Riederer usually offers three hour sessions, during which he mixes on the fly and cuts vinyl right in front of the artist’s eyes once both are satisfied with a particular take. The recordings are free to the artist, the sessions are open to the public, and you can’t buy anything you see. Ted hasn’t lowered prices by cutting out the middleman. He is the middleman. He is not a vertical operation; he is an elliptical one, a constant feedback loop supplying its own demand. Still, everyone takes something home, even if it’s the barest speck of record shop camaraderie inadvertently inhaled. Within the walls of the Never Records shop, visitors can view a gallery of photographs and artwork from previous temporary establishments in the US and UK, as well as flip through stacks of vinyl representing the hundreds of solo folk artists, punk bands, storytellers, jazz groups, and noisicians who jumped at the chance for a free recording session. Black wooden bins hold a curated selection of records from the growing collection, but these aren’t for sale or even trade. The artist or band is allowed to take their own copy home, and another is added to Riederer’s archives, as well as a digital copy. Riederer encourages bands to use the recording any way they want. There are no fees, royalties, or ownership issues. Find out more about Never Records: ]

Our Script/Playlist is a “cut and paste” of information.
Sources for notes: artist’s websites, bios,

Tune into Wednesdays, 10 to Noon on 90.1 FM KKFI


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