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 http://www.thesluts.bandcamp.com]

(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 http://www.hipshotkiller.com]

(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: http://www.violetandtheundercurrents.com]

(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: http://www.nanturner.bandcamp.com]

(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 Amazon.com’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: http://www.volkerbrothers.com]

(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: http://www.ensembleiberica.org]

(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: http://www.shinyjetsmusic.com]

(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: http://www.kemetthephantom.com.] [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 http://www.nicolespringersings.com.]

(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: cellolady.com 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: http://www.vedettes.com]

(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: http://www.itsjustivy.com]

(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: http://www.dylanpyles.bandcamp.com.]

(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 them.us “… 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 Spin.com. 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. http://www.TooMuchRock.com ]

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: http://www.blackstacey.com.]

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 http://www.changingshades.com.]

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: http://www.reverbnation.com/thedearmisses%5D

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: http://www.instantkarmakc.com]

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 http://www.oxfordremedy.com]

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: http://www.lifeofshah.com.]

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 http://speakimge.com/interview-russell-brixey/%5D

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. http://www.neverrecords.net 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: neverrecords.samexhibit.com/pages/about ]

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

Tune into Wednesdays, 10 to Noon on 90.1 FM KKFI

WMM Playlist from Dec. 11, 2019

Wednesday MidDay Medley
Produced and Hosted by Mark Manning
90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio
TEN to NOON Wednesdays – Streaming at KKFI.org

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

The 119 Best Recordings of 2019
(Part 2 of 4)

The 119 Best Recordings of 2019 are based on playlists of Wednesday MidDay Medley. We’ve 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, powered by our 100,000 watt transmitter. 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.

Tune into Wednesday MidDay Medley throughout December for our 4-week series: The 119 Best Recordings of 2019, on December 4th, 11th, 18th, and 25th. We are packing 8-hours of radio with music that represent: The 119 of Best Recordings of 2019!

We count down #90 through #61 on our list with representative tracks from: Kemet The Phantom, Calvin Arsenia, The Nicole Springer Band, The Depth and The Whisper, The Wires, Approach, True Lions, The Butter Band, Sky Smeed, Miki P, Y god Y, Cuee, Chase The Horseman, Deco Auto, Lovergurl, Digital Leather, Blue False Indigo, Wonderfuzz, Billie Eilish, Rina Mushonga, Bill Callahan, Black Pumas, Better Oblivion Community Center, Ibibio Sound Machine, The National, Lambchop, Lee Fields and The Expressions, Amyl and The Sniffers, Lana Del Rey, and Jamila Woods.

10:00 AM

1. “Main Title Instrumental – It’s Showtime Folks”
from: Motion Picture Soundtrack to All That Jazz / Universal / Dec. 20, 1979
[WMM’s theme]

2. (90.) Billie Eilish – “bad guy”
from: When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? / Darkroom – Interscope / 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.]

3. (89.) Rina Mushonga – “In a Galaxy”
from: 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]

4. (88.) Bill Callahan – “747”
from: 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.]

5. (87.) Black Pumas – “Old Man”
from: 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.]

6. (86.) Lovergurl – “The One About Moms”
from: 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.]

7. (85.) Deco Auto – “Turnaround”
from: Another Great Decision / 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]

8. (84.) Blue False Indigo – “Don’t Dream It’s Over”
from: Around The Fire / 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.]

[Blue False Indigo play Cover Me, Kansas City, Tuesday, Dec. 17, at 6:00 PM at recordBar, 1520 Grand, KCMO. This is a benefit for Midwest Music Foundation.]

10:29 – Underwriting

9. (83.) Better Oblivion Community Center – “Dylan Thomas”
from: 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.]

10. (82.) Lana Del Rey – “Doin’ Time”
from: 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 it’s 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, Ultra violence (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.]

11. (81.) Digital Leather – “White Man”
from: 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 synth-pop 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.

12. (80.) Y god Y – “Say”
from: 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 electro-pop.]

13. (79.) Calvin Arsenia – “Oh Marie [feat. J. Ashley Miller]”
from: Honeydew / 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, Caviar, 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.]

[Calvin Arsenia plays Home for the Holidays with Calvin Arsenia & Friends Friday, December 13, at 7:00 PM, at Second Presbyterian, 318 E 55th St]

[Calvin Arsenia plays Center Cut Records Holiday Party, Wednesday, December 18, at 7:00 recordBar, 1520 Grand Blvd, KCMO with Fritz Hutchison, and The Black Creatures.]

14. (78.) Ibibio Sound Machine – “I Will Run”
from: 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.]

15. (77.) Sky Smeed – “If You’re Taught You Learn to Be Mean”
from: 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).]

[Sky Smeed plays The Bottleneck in Lawrence, Friday, December 13 with Opal Agafia.]

16. (76.) Lee Fields & The Expressions – “A Promise is a Promise”
from: 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.]

11:00 – Station ID

17. (75.) Amyl and The Sniffers – “Got You”
from: 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.”]

18. (74.) Lambchop – “Everything for You”
from: 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 Lambchop 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.]

19. (73.) Approach / “Rapper’s Delight”
from: 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 that he helps curate the roster for. ]

[Lincoln Marshall play The Riot Room, 4048 Broadway, KCMO, Thursday, January 2, at 10:00 PM with Domineko, NuBlvckCity, and Black Radio.]

20. (72.) Cuee – “Broken Memories”
from: 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 received 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.]

21. (71.) The Depth and The Whisper – “Break Me”
from: 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.”]

22. (70.) The Wires – “Uncaged”
from: Wilder / The Wires / May 11, 2019
[2nd album from KC based 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: cellolady.com The Wires joined us live on WMM on May 8, 2019.]

[The Wires are playing a series of Solstice concerts at various Mid-Continent Libraries around KC starting Monday, Dec. 16, at 6:30 PM at Mid-Continent Public Library (Riverside Branch), 2700 N.W. Vivion Rd, Riverside, MO. And continuing Thursday, Dec. 19, at 2:00 PM at Mid-Continent Public Library (Boardwalk Branch), 8656 N. Ambassador Drive, KCMO. and Friday, Dec. 20, at 3:30 PM at Mid-Continent Public Library (Parkville Branch), 8815 Tom Watson Pkwy, Parkville, MO.]

23. (69.) Jamila Woods – “FRIDA”
from: 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.]

24. (68.) Wonderfuzz – “Get There”
from: 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]

11:30 – Underwriting

25. (67.) Scott Stanton & The Butter Band – “Bicycle”
from: 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.]

[Scott Stanton & The Butter Band play Cover Me, Kansas City, Tuesday, December 17, at 6:00 PM at recordBar, 1520 Grand, KCMO. This is a benefit for Midwest Music Foundation.]

26. (66.) Chase The Horseman – “Disinformation Blues (Radio Edit)”
from: Disinformation Blues EP / Chase The 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.]

[Chase the Horseman plays Stockyard Sounds at Stockyards Brewing Co.. 1600 Genessee, KCMO, on Monday, December 16, at 7:00 PM with Lava Dreams.]

[Chase the Horseman plays Replay Lounge, 946 Massachusetts St, Lawrence, KS. Saturday, January 4, 2020 at 10:00 PM with True Lions and Pala Zolo.]

27. (65.) The Nicole Springer Band – “Willing”
from: Willing / Nicole Springer / November 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 http://www.nicolespringersings.com]

[Nicole Springer plays The Brick, on Saturday, December 14 with True Lions and Teri Quinn.]

28. (64.) Kemet the Phantom – “Electric (feat. Kadesh Flow)”
from: 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: http://www.kemetthephantom.com.] [Kemet The Phantom plays with Marcus Lewis Big Band presenting his hip hop poetry with, 18-piece jazz ensemble called Brass and Bougee.]

29. (63.) The National – “You Had Your Soul with You [feat. Gail Ann Dorsey]”
from: 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.]

30. (62.) Miki P – “I Get Lost [Feat. The Swallowtails]”
from: 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.]

31. (61.) True Lions – “Birthday Party”
from: You’re Not Invited / True Lions / November 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.]

[True Lions plays The Brick, on Sat., Dec. 14 with Nicole Springer and Teri Quinn.]

[True Lions plays The RINO, on Sun., Dec. 29 with Chloe Jacobson, Other Suns, and Pealds.]

[True Lions play Replay Lounge, 946 Massachusetts St, Lawrence, KS. Sat., Jan. 4, 2020 at 10:00 PM with Chase The Horseman and Pala Zolo]

32. Noel Coward – “The Party’s Over Now”
from: Noel Coward in New York / drg / 2003
[orig. 1957]

Next week on December 18, we bring you part 3 of our 4-week special, the 119 Best Recordings of 2019. We will count down #60 to #31 with representative tracks from: The Sextet, Violet and the Undercurrents, Other Americans, Yes You Are, Fathers, Akkilles, Volker Brothers, Ensemble Iberica, Simon Fink & The Wires, The Greeting Committee, The UK’s, Radar State, Headlight Rivals, OLIVIA FOX, Berwanger, Radkey, Hipshot Killer, Nan Turner, LK Ultra!, Florist, Hadiza., Our Native Daughters (feat. Rhiannon Giddens, Leyla McCalla, Amythyst Kiah & Allison Russell), Brittany Howard, Durand Jones & The Indications, Big Thief, Hand Habits, Cass McCombs, Michael Kiwanuka, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, and Yola.

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

Wednesday MidDay Medley in on the web:
http://www.kkfi.org,
http://www.WednesdayMidDayMedley.org,
http://www.facebook.com/WednesdayMidDayMedleyon90.1FM

On your local radio dial 90.1 FM or
STREAMING LIVE at: kkfi.org

Show #815

Wednesday MidDay Medley presents The 119 Best Recordings of 2019 (Part 2 of 4)

Wednesday MidDay Medley
Produced and Hosted by Mark Manning
90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio
TEN to NOON Wednesdays – Streaming at KKFI.org

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

The 119 Best Recordings of 2019
(Part 2 of 4)

Wednesday MidDay Medley presents part-two, of our four-week special: The 119 Best Recordings of 2019. Based on playlists of this little ole radio show, we’ve compiled representative tracks from our favorite full-length and EP recordings of 2019. We realize these “Best of” lists can seem subjective, 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, powered by our 100,000 watt transmitter. 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.

This Wednesday, we’ll count down #90 through #61 on our list with representative tracks from: Kemet The Phantom, Calvin Arsenia, The Nicole Springer Band, The Depth and The Whisper, The Wires, Approach, True Lions, The Butter Band, Sky Smeed, Miki P, Y god Y, Cuee, Chase The Horseman, Deco Auto, Lovergurl, Digital Leather, Blue False Indigo, Wonderfuzz, Billie Eilish, Rina Mushonga, Bill Callahan, Black Pumas, Better Oblivion Community Center, Ibibio Sound Machine, The National, Lambchop, Lee Fields and The Expressions, Amyl and The Sniffers, Lana Del Rey, and Jamila Woods.

Tune into Wednesday MidDay Medley throughout December for our 4-week series: The 119 Best Recordings of 2019, on December 4th, 11th, 18th, and 25th. We are packing 8-hours of radio with music that represent the 119 of Best Recordings of 2019!

Tune in on 90.1 FM KKFI
or streaming live at kkfi.org

Show #815

WMM Playlist from Feb. 6, 2019

Wednesday MidDay Medley
TEN to NOON Wednesdays – Streaming at KKFI.org
90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio
Produced and Hosted by Mark Manning

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Betse Ellis + Marion Merritt
+ Todd Albright + Keaton Conrad

1. “Main Title Instrumental – It’s Showtime Folks”
from: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack to All That Jazz / 1980
[WMM’s theme song]

2. The Buhs – “Can’t Let Go”
From: Can’t Let Go – Single / The Buhs / February 14, 2016
[The Buhs is a super band collective with singers Julia Haile, Lee Langston, and Anthony Saunders along with emcees Reach and Les Izmore., and Ryan J. Lee, Hermon Mehari, Ben Leifer, Tim Braun, Brad Williams and Kinyon Price. IThe band shot a beutiful music video for this song on location in Paris. More info at: http://www.thebuhs.com. Singer Julia Haile is the lead singer for the band Hi-Lux. She also performs with the Julia Haile Trio and The Julia Haile band with guitarist Tim Braun and drummer Brendan Culp.]

[Julia Haile Band plays The Phoenix, 302 West 8th Street, KCMO, on Saturday, Feb 9, at 5:00 PM.]

[Julia Haile plays A Valentine’s Day Show at Y.J.s, February 14, at 7:00 with Port Jen Harris.]

3. Betse Ellis – “Another Night Gone”
from: Don’t You Want To Go / Free Dirt / April 21, 2009
[Originally from Fayetteville, Arkansas, Betse Ellis is one of the founding members of one of Kansas City’s treasured bands The Wilders, an acoustic honky-tonk band, that toured nationally and internationally for 15 years, and released 10 albums. In 2011 the band ended. One if the side projects of The Wilders was a band called The Whittlers, made of up of Phil Wade and Tom Livesay who recorded 4 full length albums from 2000 to 2004 while they worked together at the Kansas City Art Institute. The Whitlers were the first to record this song written by Betse Ellis, and released on the finally album, Nobody’s Happy, from 2004, with Tom on Vocals, Ike Sheldon on Piano, Phil Wade on Guitar. The track was recorded as a surprise for Betse.]

10:08 – Winter Fund Drive Co-Hosts: Betse Ellis and Marion Merritt

Betse Ellis

Betse Ellis is originally from Fayetteville, Arkansas. She received her Bachelors of Arts in Music and a Bachelors of Arts in English, from the University of Missouri – Kansas City. She has been playing the Violin for over 40 years, with over 20 years playing fiddle and also working as a teacher of music. Betse was one of the founding members of the critically acclaimed and internationally known band, The Wilders. Betse has released two solo records, and for the last several years is recording and performing with her partner, multi-instrumentalist Clarke Wyatt, as Betse & Clarke. Their debut album, “River Still Rise” was in our Top Ten, of The 116 Best Recordings of 2016. In 2017 their special analog recorded collection of tunes released on cassette called, Tunes We Like, was in our 117 Best Recordings of 2017.

Betse Ellis, Thanks for being with us on Wednesday MidDay Medley

Marion Merritt

Marion Merritt is our most frequent contributor to WMM, She grew up in Los Angeles, and St. Louis. She went to college in Columbia, Missouri. She studied art and musical engineering, and is a avid lover of classic films and punk rock music. She saw Talking Heads on their first U.S. tour when they played One Block West, in 1978. For 13 years she has been sharing her musical discoveries and information from her musically-encyclopedic brain on Wednesday MidDay Medley. Marion has joined us for every on-air fund drive to help raise funds for the MidCoast Radio Project. Marion is founder of Records With Merritt, at 1614 Westport Rd. in Kansas City, Missouri. Records With Merritt features, weekly in-store performances from young and upcoming bands, holds meetings for a vinyl listening club, and was once the location for a wedding. More information at: http://www.recordwithmerritt.com

Marion Merritt thank you for being with us on Wednesday MidDay Medley.

Non-Commercial, Community Radio, means that three times a year, we interrupt our regularly scheduled programming, to ask YOU our beautiful-listeners, to help us continue 90.1 FM’s unique, 24-7 programming. The spirit of this station is kept alive by hundreds of volunteers who passionately donate their time and abilities to keep the transmission of our 100,000-watt-signal alive. We are a operated by a not-for-profit organization, incorporated over 40 years ago, called The MidCoast Radio Project. YOU are the reason we are able to stay alive.

10:15

4. Calvin Arsenia – “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around”
from: Live at Greenwood Social Hall / Calvin Arsenia / Unreleased, 2017
[From Calvin’s June 11, 2017 live performance at Greenwood Social Hall, 1760 Bellevue, KCMO. The first known recording of this song was by the Dixie Jubilee Singers, May 30, 1924. The first known printing of the song was by Clarence Cameron White, 1927, Forty Negro Spirituals, Theodore Presser Co. Philadelphia. “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around” is an old spiritual song that was introduced in Albany, Georgia, by Reverend Ralph Abernathy during the summer of 1962 when mass arrests and demonstrations erupted for the second time during the Civil Rights Movement. Dr. Abernathy taught the song to a mass meeting of the Negro community at Mount Zion Baptist Church, in one night. It immediately caught on and became widely used in the demonstrations. Sources: Sing for Freedom: The Story of the Civil Rights Movement through its songs, edited and compiled by Guy and Candie Carawan.]

[Calvin Arsenia performs in Songs of Freedom: Honoring Black America History & Music, Sunday, February 10, at 7:00 PM, at Community Christian Church, 4601 Main St, KCMO. This special one-night event celebrates the legacy and resilience of Black People of Kansas City and America. The show includes: spirituals, anthems, songs from the civil rights movement, and classics featuring the voices of Calvin Arsenia & Misha Roberts, with Everett Freeman on piano, Brad Williams on drums, Reggie Watkins on organ, James Ward on bass. Also featuring special guest vocalists: Christopher Barksdale-Burns, Hope McIntosh, and poets: Glenn North and John Baker.]

5. Bob & Una Walkenhorst – “Get On The Bus”
from: For Tomorrow / BAT Records / October 12, 2018
[25 year old Una Walkenhorst is a singer/songwriter from Kansas City, Missouri. Following the release of her debut album “Scars” in 2014, Una immediately had “new fans. . . coming out of the proverbial woodwork” (AXS). Paired with refreshingly raw vocals, Una’s heartfelt lyrics “will stop you in your tracks (at once beautiful and chilling),” wrote Gilded Palace Radio, as she weaves stories of genuine human experience. Una told KCUR FM that her father was one of the people who made her love music. But having a famous father can be challenging: “I knew that if I started my music career here I would have a lot of opportunities, but not all of them would be because of my music. They would be because I am someone’s daughter,” Walkenhorst says. Loading up her 97 Honda Civic, Una then spent a year traveling across North America promoting her music and connecting with listeners one-on-one. She ended up living in New Orleans. Una Walkenhorst is the youngest daughter of Bob Walkenhorst, a founding member of The Rainmakers, which had national and international hits in the 1980s and 90s, and continue to this day touring and recording new music. In January of 2018 Una Walkenhorst returned home to Kansas City from New Orleans. Over the past several years, Una and Bob had performed together at selected events, including Folk Alliance International. This year the father and daughter duo decided to record an album together, where they split the difference, taking turns as songwriters for the album’s songs, written individually, and recorded together, in clear beautiful harmonies, with that extra special shared musical DNA, that can be heard in the harmonies of The Carter Family, Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear, or Shy Boys.]

[Bob & Una Walkenhorst open for Brewer & Shipley, Saturday, February 9, at 8:00 PM – Liberty Hall, Lawrence, KS]

6. Hembree – “Culture”
from: House on Fire / OREAD Records / Expected April 26, 2019
[First single from band’s upcoming full length album debut. This Kansas City based band was formed in November of 2015. Band members include: Isaac Flynn, Garrett Childers, Eric Davis, Alex Ward and Austin Ward. This new single was written by Isaac Flynn and Eric Davis and performed by Hembree. The track was produced by Eric Hillman and Isaac Flynn and engineered by Joel Martin, Isaac Flynn, and Eric Hillman. The track was mixed by Joe Visciano at Studio 112 in Brooklyn, NY, and mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound. Hemree release their debut EP “Had It All” in Nov. 2017.]

10:32 – Underwriting

7. Keaton Conrad – “What Am I Supposed to Do?”
from: Nova / Keaton Conrad / February 1, 2019
[The 2nd full length album from 19 year old Kansas native, Keaton Conrad who released an original 5-song EP, Panic & Blame. In 2016 he recorded his first full-length LP entitled “Waves” released on Jan. 27, 2017.]

10:38 – Interview with Keaton Conrad

Keaton Conrad

KC musician and recording artist Keaton Conrad joins us live in our 90.1 FM Studios. Keaton Conrad has received critical acclaim, regarded as “exceptionally promising” by The Kansas City Star, and “making things happen on stages …with an engaging voice and passion for creating good music” by Ink Magazine. Conrad spent two years as the lead singer & keyboardist in the band ChangeUp, performing all around Kansas City. 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. Keaton Conrad has just released his second full length album Nova, on Feb 1.

Keaton Conrad, thanks for being with us on Wednesday MidDay Medley.

19 year old Kansas Native, Keaton Conrad records all of his own music in his home studio, mixing and mastering it all..

Keaton Conrad recently played an Album Release show for his new record Nova, Friday, February 1, at 7:00 at the Rino, 314 Armour Road, North Kansas City with The Moose, and Eems.

Keaton grew up in Olathe, Kansas (as did Calvin Arsenia, and Duncan Burnett). Keaton sang in High School Choir and performed in Olathe North West High School musicals.

Keaton Conrad is navigating the KC Music Scene while also working through his second year in college at University of Missouri at Kansas City.

More information at http://www.keatonconradmusic.com

10:49

8. Keaton Conrad – “I Think I Fell in Love with You”
from: 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.]

We are The Voice of The Community – 90.1 KKFI offers 104 different radio programs. 84 of these programs are locally created and produced and hosted and engineered and written by over 100 different people, who create content, and personally handcraft each show, each week. There are 143 hours each week of locally produced handcrafted programs. You we not find this kind of representative diversity anywhere else on your radio dial. Or from any singular source on your computer. It is very special. It needs to be nourished and kept alive in a world of corporate, nationally owned, commercial or religious broadcasting. Not only do we bring the most diverse and unfiltered news and information, but our musical playlists are very deep, and comprehensive. In one week you can hear over 2000 different songs played, in Blues, Jazz, Folk, Hip Hop, Reggae, Classical, World, Americana, Southern Soul, Fusion, Soul, Rock, New Wave, Electronic, Native, Local, Old Timey, Rockabilly, Women’s, Children’s, Gospel, and Experimental. With all of this, you also hear the voices from the hundreds of KKFI volunteers, and thousands of guests from the community, who share their stories, while broadcasting live from our non-commercial, midtown studios, here at 39th & Main, in the center of our metro, across two states, and many cities, and hundreds of communities, and thousands of radios. At http://www.wednesdaymiddaymedley.org you can find our playlists from the last 8 years.

10:59 – Station ID

9. The Philistines – “1971”
from: The Backbone of Night / The Record Machine / June 4, 2016
[KC based rock band with a psychedelic bent, made up of: Kimmie Queen on lead vocals; Cody Wyoming on lead guitar & vocals; Steve Gardels on drums, Rod Peal on guitar; Josh Mobley on keyboard, and Barry Kidd on bass. (For this record Michelle Bacon played bass & backing vocals.) Recorded & mixed with Paul Malinowski at Massive Sound Studios and mastered by Mike Nolte at Eureka Mastering.]

[The Philistines play the MidCoast Takeover Fundraiser #2, Friday, February 8, at 8:00 PM, at recordBar, 1520 Grand Boulevard, KCMO with Cadillac Flambé, and Momma’s Boy.]

[The Philistines play Replay Lounge, 946 Massachusetts St, Lawrence, KS, Saturday, February 9, at 10 PM with Stone Grower, and Sona.]

10. Stacy Busch – “End in Flames”
from: Music from “Mass” / Stacy Busch / Unreleased February, 2018
[28 year old Stacy Busch is Operations Manager for Owen/Cox Dance Group. Stacy is originally from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She is a multimedia artist & performer. Her collaborative concert experiences are designed to be provocative and accessible to cultivate broader artistic interest and, reach under-served and/or misrepresented communities. Stacy is the founder and president of No Divide KC, an arts and social justice non-profit that creates artistic events for various social causes. Stacy’s work has been performed nationally as well as in France and Iceland. She recently partnered with Gilda’s Club KC, Owen/Cox Dance and Charlotte Street Foundation to compose and perform the music for “Collective: Our Stories of Cancer.” In 2018, her service with No Divide KC will include partnerships with the Kansas City Ballet School and the Johnson County Library. Stacy’s work has been performed at: the Kansas City Fringe Festival, Art in the Loop Kansas City, the experimental concert series ArtSounds, the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and UMKC Composer’s Guild Concerts. She has partnered with the Kansas City Streetcar, the UMKC dance program, Charlotte Street Foundation and the electronic music non-profit KcEMA. In addition to Kansas City, Stacy’s work has been featured at the University of Colorado-Boulder, the University of Michigan, Western Michigan University, Central Michigan University. It has also been performed by ensembles including: Bent Frequency, the Beo String Quartet and the Zodiac Trio. She is a two-time ArtSounds Grant recipient, a UMKC Women’s Council Grant recipient and was a CITS Scholar at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Stacy received her Masters in Music in composition from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and her Bachelors in Music in composition from Western Michigan University. Her teachers include Rome Prize winners Paul Rudy and James Mobberley as well as Pulitzer Prize winners Zhou Long and Chen Yi. Other influential teachers include Guggenheim Fellow Curtis Curtis-Smith, Christopher Biggs and Lisa Coons. Prior to studying music, Stacy studied print journalism at Boston University.]

[Stacy Busch presents, Mass: Live Performance and Art Gallery, Saturday, February 9, 6:00pm Cocktail hour and Art Gallery / 7:00pm Live Performance, at Musical Theater Heritage, in Crown Center, 1800 Central St, KCMO. Multimedia artist and performer Stacy Busch is collaborating with Australian experimental artist Jade Suine and choreographer/dancer Tianna Morton to create Mass, a new music concert and exhibition. The project is born out of Busch’s month long journey at the Listhus Artist Residency in Northern Iceland, in which she experienced silence, isolation and extreme natural landscapes, which allowed Busch to uncover a more honest connection with her artistic voice and connect it to her spiritual practice. The full live performance is an evening length concert of new music largely conceived during her time in Iceland. Suine is providing a series of visual pieces and Morton brings all new choreography to the live performance. This concert event transports viewers to an environment that is unlike any other: the harsh yet breathtaking northern Icelandic landscape, which is meant to stir an ancient connection to the divine within each person and to transport the viewer someplace otherworldly. In this distinct atmosphere, the live performance will push the audience to explore themselves, and foster acceptance and empathy towards others.]

KKFI’s Mission Statement: KKFI is the Kansas City area’s independent, noncommercial community radio station. We seek to stimulate, educate and entertain our audience, to reflect the diversity of the local and world community, and to provide a channel for individuals and groups, issues and music that have been overlooked, suppressed or under-represented by other media.

11:13

11. Todd Albright – “My Money Never Runs Out”
from: Detroit Twelve String Blues & Rags / Third Man Records / March 10, 2017
[Todd Albright is a Country Blues, finger-style guitar player and singer living in Detroit, Michigan. Playing on 6 and 12 string guitars, Todd brings to life an era composed of, among others—Blind Lemon Jefferson, Sylvester Weaver, Blind Blake, and Big Bill Broonzy, throwing in the occasional John Fahey number for good measure. Todd’s history playing the Blues reaches 23 years, though he does not remember a time that a guitar wasn’t in his hands. He first heard the Country Blues at the age of thirteen, thanks to a gifted John Lee Hooker record from his sister. The experience was a profound one—the Blues felt right, and he immediately became a self-taught student of the genre aiming solely to interpret the sounds of the masters.]

[Todd Albright plays Records With Merritt, 1614 Westport Rd, Friday, February 8, at 7:00 PM with special guest Mikal Shapiro.]

11:16 – Interview with Todd Albright

Todd Albright

Todd Albright is a Country Blues, finger-style guitar player and singer living in Detroit, Michigan. Playing on 6 and 12 string guitars, Todd brings to life an era composed of, among others—Blind Lemon Jefferson, Sylvester Weaver, Blind Blake, and Big Bill Broonzy, throwing in the occasional John Fahey number for good measure.

Todd Albright plays Records With Merritt, 1614 Westport Rd, Friday, February 8, at 7:00 PM with special guest Mikal Shapiro.

Todd Albright, Thanks for being with us on Wednesday MidDay Medley.

Todd’s history playing the Blues reaches 25 years, though he does not remember a time that a guitar wasn’t in his hands.

Todd first heard the Country Blues at the age of thirteen, thanks to a gifted John Lee Hooker record from his sister. The experience was a profound one—the Blues felt right, and he immediately became a self-taught student of the genre interpreting the masters.

Todd was playing music in a book store in Detroit, playing transition music between poets. Jack White was in the audience and heard Todd playing and offered him an opportunity to record with Third Man Records.

Todd has performed across the Midwest both as a solo musician and alongside his band of 20 years, The Staving Chain, which specializes in the Delta Blues.

Compelled by the golden age of the blues, Todd upholds the traditions of the masters such as Blind Willie McTell, George Carter, Blind Lemon Jefferson, and Leadbelly.

Throughout the years, Todd has enjoyed sharing the stage with notable musicians and friends such as Dakota Dave Hull, Roy Book Binder, Charlie Parr, and Paul Geremia. .

11:26

12. Todd Albright – “O Mary Don’t You Weep”
from: Todd Albright Folk Blues Night No. 9 / Todd Albright / February 18, 2014
[“O Mary Don’t You Weep” is a Negro spiritual that originates from before the American Civil War –scholars call a “slave song,” “a label that describes their origins among the enslaved,” and it contains “coded messages of hope and resistance.” It is one of the most important of Negro spirituals. The song tells the Biblical story of Mary of Bethany and her distraught pleas to Jesus to raise her brother Lazarus from the dead.With liberation thus one of its themes, the song again become popular during the Civil Rights Movement.]

[Todd Albright plays Records With Merritt, 1614 Westport Rd, Friday, February 8, at 7:00 PM with special guest Mikal Shapiro.]

13. Digital Leather – “White Man”
from: 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 synth-pop 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.

11:32 – Underwriting

In this past year, we’ve featured segments shining a light on: Bach Aria Soloist, KC Gamelan Genta Kasturi, The Workers Revival Festival, Open Spaces Kansas City, The Arts Asylum, KC PrideFest, Midwest Music Foundation and the MidCoast Takeover, Kansas City Public Library, The Midwest Innocence Project, Record Store Day, Folk Alliance International Conference, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. , Spinning Tree Theatre, Middle of The Map Fest, Shuttlecock Music Events, Clay Platte Montessori, a farm based School, American Jazz Museum, Never Records, KC Fringe Theatre Fest, Late Night Theatre, The Barn Players, Crossroads Music Fest, Lawrence Field Day Fest, Girls Rock! and the Annual Girls Rock! Camp, The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Apocalypse Meow, Union Station, Outer Reaches Festival, Plaza Art Fair, Bullseye Records, Black Site Records, Haymaker Records, Squeezebox Theatre, Crossroads KC, The Midland Theatre, Johnson County Performing Arts Series, Voltaire, Datura Records, Too Much Rock, Shelf Life, The Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, The Band That Fell To Earth A Tribute To David Bowie, The Kauffman Center for The Performing Arts, UMKC Conservatory of Music, and more…

11:41

14. Kat King – “Song From Spain”
from: Song From Spain – Single / 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. ]

[Kat King is playing a Single Release Show, Saturday, February 9, at 9:00 PM, at The Brick, 1727 McGee St, KCMO with Blue False Indigo, and Chase The Horseman.]

15. Motherfolk – “Die a Little More”
from: Die a Little More – Single / Motherfolk / January 31, 2019
[Motherfolk began as a collaborative effort between Nathan Dickerson and Bobby Paver, two college friends with a penchant for writing songs with one another. In the first year of the project, the two songwriters made frequent trips to Nashville to record their first endeavor. In 2014, their eponymous debut album showcased the duo’s musical prowess through a genre-bending collection of elegantly crafted songs. Since then, Karlie Dickerson, Clayton Allender, Joel Call, and Ethan Wescott have joined Motherfolk’s ranks, and the band has made a name for themselves touring all across the nation. The outfit’s high-energy live performances have won over audiences from coast to coast, and their infectious musical persona has become one of the most exciting rising success stories in the indie scene. In 2016, Motherfolk released their 2nd album, ‘Fold’.]

[SoundMachineKC presents Motherfolk, Stay Outside, Faintheart, Thursday, February 7, at 9:00 PM, at miniBar, 3810 Broadway Rd, KCMO.]

11:56

16. Akkilles – “Feelin’ My Self”
from: Feelin’ My Self – Single / Akkilles / February 1, 2019
[Kansas City based Akkilles is the recording project of musician and composer David Bennett. Written by Akkilles. Made at Aorist Studios. Mastered By: Duane Trower of Weights & Measures SoundLab. Artwork: Original Photo & Photo Direction by Bryan Koehler (El Rey-Tones). Design: Jim Button (The Beholders). More info at http://www.akkilles.bandcamp.com.]

17. Noel Coward – “The Party’s Over Now”
from: Noel Coward in New York / drg / 2003
[orig. 1957]

Next week on February 13 Marion Merritt is back as out Guest Producer, playing her latest sonic discoveries and sharing information for her musically encyclopedic brain.

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

Wednesday MidDay Medley in on the web:
http://www.kkfi.org,
http://www.WednesdayMidDayMedley.org,
http://www.facebook.com/WednesdayMidDayMedleyon90.1FM

Show #772

WMM presents Betse Ellis, Marion Merritt, Keaton Conrad & Todd Albright

Wednesday MidDay Medley
TEN to NOON Wednesdays – Streaming at KKFI.org
90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio
Produced and Hosted by Mark Manning

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Betse Ellis + Marion Merritt
+ Todd Albright + Keaton Conrad

Mark plays The MidCoast Sound from: The Philistines, Calvin Arsenia, Bob & Una Walkenhorst, The Buhs, Akkilles, Kat King, Hembree, Stacy Busch, Betse Ellis, Keaton Conrad, Digital Leather, Todd Albright, and Motherfolk.

Betse Ellis

Betse Ellis, critically acclaimed fiddler, singer, and songwriter, and one half of Betse & Clarke returns to Wednesday MidDay Medley for the entire show as our special guest co-host.

Marion Merritt

Marion Merritt, longtime contributor to Wednesday MidDay Medley, and founder of Records With Merritt, also joins us as special co-host with Betse to encourage our diverse and loyal listeners to call 888-931-0901, to support 90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio during our Winter Fund Drive Show.

Keaton Conrad

At 10:35, Mark talks with Kansas City recording artist, Keaton Conrad who has been regarded as “exceptionally promising” by The Kansas City Star, and “making things happen on stages …with an engaging voice and passion for creating good music” by Ink Magazine. Conrad spent two years as the lead singer & keyboardist in the band ChangeUp, performing all around Kansas City. 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. Keaton Conrad has just released his second full length album Nova, on Friday, February 1.

Todd Albright

At 11:15 we talk with Third Man Records recording artist, Todd Albright a Detroit, Michigan based, twelve-string finger-style guitarist who specializes in country blues. Compelled by the golden age of the blues, Todd upholds the traditions of the masters such as Blind Willie McTell, George Carter, Blind Lemon Jefferson, and Leadbelly. Todd’s history playing the blues reaches over 25 years. Throughout the years, Todd has enjoyed sharing the stage with notable musicians and friends such as Dakota Dave Hull, Roy Book Binder, Charlie Parr, and Paul Geremia. Todd Albright plays Records with Merritt, 1614 Westport Rd, KCMO, on Friday, February 8, at 7:00 PM with special guest Mikal Shapiro.

On your local radio dial 90.1 FM or
STREAMING LIVE at: kkfi.org

Show #772

Wednesday MidDay Medley’s The 118 Best Recordings of 2018

Wednesday MidDay Medley
TEN to NOON Wednesdays – Streaming at KKFI.org
90.1 FM KKFI – Kansas City Community Radio
Produced and Hosted by Mark Manning

The 118 Best Recordings of 2018

The 118 Best Recordings of 2018 are based on the playlists of this little ole radio show, we’ve compiled representative tracks from our favorite full-length and EP recordings of the year. We realize that these “Best of” lists can seem very subjective, please accept our list as a celebration of the year in music. In 2018 we’ve played nearly 1000 different songs on the show, and we’ve played from over 400 New Releases. More than 250 of these were New MidCoastal Releases. We also conducted over 117 interviews with over 150 different guests. 75 of the representative recordings in our “Best of” list were MidCoastal Releases. Over 35 of the bands and artists in our “Best of” list have joined us as guests on Wednesday MidDay Medley on 90.1 FM. It’s all good!

#1. Calvin Arsenia – Cantaloupe / Bullseye Records / September 15, 2018
[The first release on Bullseye Records. Calvin Arsenia who came home to KC in 2014 after living in Edinburgh, Scotland, and has released the EPs, Moments, Prose, and last year’s full length debut, Catastrophe. This year he released the EP Caviar to special guests who attended his Wickstock West show in West Bottoms. Standing at 6 foot 6 inches, Arsenia’s powerful vocals span a 3.5 octave range, while playing piano, banjo, guitar & harp. Calvin has played Folk Alliance International, KC Fringe Fest, Apocalypse Meow, The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, The 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 where he has played San Francisco, Portland, Vancouver, NYC, Boston, Edinburgh, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, Switzerland, Lyon and Paris.]

#2. Bob & Una Walkenhorst – For Tomorrow / BAT Records / October 12, 2018
[25 year old Una Walkenhorst is a singer/songwriter from Kansas City, Missouri. Following the release of her debut album “Scars” in 2014, Una immediately had “new fans. . . coming out of the proverbial woodwork” (AXS). Paired with refreshingly raw vocals, Una’s heartfelt lyrics “will stop you in your tracks (at once beautiful and chilling),” wrote Gilded Palace Radio, as she weaves stories of genuine human experience. Una told KCUR FM that her father was one of the people who made her love music. But having a famous father can be challenging: “I knew that if I started my music career here I would have a lot of opportunities, but not all of them would be because of my music. They would be because I am someone’s daughter,” Walkenhorst says. Loading up her 97 Honda Civic, Una then spent a year traveling across North America promoting her music and connecting with listeners one-on-one. She ended up living in New Orleans. Una Walkenhorst is the youngest daughter of Bob Walkenhorst, a founding member of The Rainmakers, which had national and international hits in the 1980s and 90s, and continue to this day touring and recording new music. In January of 2018 Una Walkenhorst returned home to Kansas City from New Orleans. Over the past several years, Una and Bob had performed together at selected events, including Folk Alliance International. This year the father and daughter duo decided to record an album together, where they split the difference, taking turns as songwriters for the album’s songs, written individually, and recorded together, in clear beautiful harmonies, with that extra special shared musical DNA, that can be heard in the harmonies of The Carter Family, Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear, or Shy Boys.]

#3. Mikal Shapiro – The Musical II / Mikal Shapiro / May 26, 2018
[The Musical II is the sequel to Shapiro’s 2015 concept album “The Musical.” Mikal Shapiro, on vocals & guitar, Chad Brothers on vocals & guitar, Johnny Hamil on bass, and Matt Richey on drums. Special guests include: Hermon Mehari on trumpet, Tina Bilberry on viola & violin, Damon Parker on keyboards, and Lauren Hughes on vocals. Engineered and co-produced by Joel Nanos at Element Recording & Mastering Studios. Mikal Shapiro is a KC songwriter whose musical influences span popular songs, psych rock, lounge, classic country and old time spirituals. She has toured extensively across the U.S. and has recorded five critically acclaimed albums. KC Star and Tim Finn declared her album “The Musical” to be one of his top five releases of 2015. A third generation storyteller, she draws inspiration from her travels, love life, and the state of the Union.]

#4. Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear – Radio Winners / Glassnote / July 27, 2018
[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.]

#5. Amy Farrand & The Like – One / Amy Farrand / April 28, 2018
[Amy Farrand & The Like are Amy Farrand on lead vocals & guitar, Steve Tubbert on bass, Felix Dukes on drums, Kyle Dahlquist on keyboards & backing vocals, Stephan Jean-Francois on trumpet, and Katie Gilchrist on backing vocals. 11-song debut album was recorded with Duane Trower at Weights & Measures Soundlab. Amy Farrand plays over a dozen intruments, bass, drums, lap steel, guitar, she has hosted variety shows, and radio shows and has been a a member of the bands: American Catastrophe, Experimental Instrument Orchestra, Shotgun Idols, Sister Mary Rotten Crotch, Atlantic Fadeout, The Silver Maggies. One reviewer wrote of her, “Amy Farrand is a tough-as-nails vocalist making her an invaluable asset to any live act.”]

#6. Emmaline Twist – Dissimulation / Black Site / August 24, 2018
[Debut LP from Emmaline Twist, Kansas City’s Darkwave / Post-Punk / Shoegaze project. In 2017 the band released “Dissimulation 1,” four songs in digital format, their first since 2016’s single release of “Vega” b/w “Moon Eyes.” The band is Meredith McGrade on vocals & guitar, Kristin Conkright on bass, Jonathan Knecht on drums, and Krysztof Nemeth on baritone guitar. Recorded, Mixed, and Produced at Massive Sound by Paul Malinowski, and Mastered by Mike Nolte at Eureka Mastering. Matched with compelling cover-art created by Amy Abshier. Alex Alexander recently joined the band on synthesizers & guitar.]

#7. Janelle Monáe – Dirty Computer / Wondaland Arts Sociaety – Bad Boy / April 27, 2018
[Nominated for a Grammy Award for Album of The Year, and Best Music Video for “Pynk.” Janelle Monáe moved from Kansas City, Kansas to New York to study theatre at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. Her original plan was to pursue a career on Broadway, but she soon changed her mind and returned to music. After moving to Atlanta, GA, where she met OutKast’s Big Boi, Monáe founded the Wondaland Arts Society with like-minded young artists and made appearances on Outcast’s Idlewild, where Janelle is featured on the songs “Call The Law” and “In Your Dreams”. In 2007, Monáe released her first solo work, titled Metropolis. A few months later she was signed to Sean “Diddy” Combs’ label, Bad Boy Records. Dirty Computer is the third studio album by Janelle Monáe. In October 2016, Monáe made her big screen acting debut in the critically acclaimed film Moonlight. Monáe also starred in the film Hidden Figures. While filming her two movie roles, Monáe remained active in music with features on Grimes’ “Venus Fly” from her Art Angels album and also the soundtrack for the Netflix series The Get Down with a song titled, “Hum Along and Dance (Gotta Get Down)”. She was also on the tracks “Isn’t This the World” and “Jalapeño” for the Hidden Figures soundtrack. In an interview with People, Monáe revealed that she was already working on her third studio album when she received the scripts for her two first acting roles; therefore, she put the album on hold. It was confirmed by Monae after “Make Me Feel” was released that Prince, with whom she collaborated on her preceding album, The Electric Lady, had worked on the single, as well as the entire album, before he passed away. This was confirmed after listeners noticed similarities between the single’s sound and the late musician’s work. Monae stated in an interview with BBC Radio 1: “Prince was actually working on the album with me before he passed on to another frequency, and helped me come up with some sounds. And I really miss him, you know, it’s hard for me to talk about him. But I do miss him, and his spirit will never leave me.”

#8. Shy Boys – Bell House / Polyvinyl Record Co. / August 3, 2018
[Shy Boys line-up consists of brothers Collin Rausch and Kyle Rausch, Konnor Ervin, Kyle Little and Ross Brown. The group formed shortly after the trio became roommates in 2012. 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 Spin.com. 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.]

#9. CS Luxem – Symptoms / Whatever Forever / February 17, 2018
[Debut full-length from CS Luxem who works as a solo artist as well as a collaborator. CS Luxem has released several EPs and has performed all over the United States and Europe. Info at http://www.csluxem.bandcamp.com]

#10. Monta At Odds – Argentum Dreams / Haymaker Records / October 19, 2018
[6th full length release from the psychedelic, experimental indie/space rock/electronic collective based in KCK formed by brothers Dedric and Delaney Moore. The band describes their music as: Mutant Disco, minimal synthwave, post-punk dance, Electronica, Indie, Space Rock, Ambient. Current members include: Dedric Moore, Delaney Moore, Alexander Thomas, Adam Davies, Zach Bozich, Aaron Osborne, Matthew Hayden. For this new EP the band collaborated with Taryn Blake Miller who records as Your Friend. Past supporting members of Monta At Odds include: Mika Tanaya, Sterling Holman, Bree Plaster; Eric Bessenbacher, Ryan Shank, Jeremiah James, Samer Saba, Doug Hutchinson, Erin O’Neill, Sam Behrens, Luke Behrens, Sam Hughes, Tom Romero, Caleb Aldrich, John Aldrich.]

#11. Mysterious Clouds – My Head is Going Round EP / Haymaker Records / May 25, 2018
[Mysterious Clouds is one of the musical projects of Kansas City, Kansas based post-punk psychedelic musical artists, Dedric Moore and Delaney Moore and special guests. For this new EP the band collaborated with Taryn Blake Miller a Lawrence Kansas based musician and songwriter who records as Your Friend. The Delaney brothers are also founders of the band Monta At Odds. The band writes: “While crawling around in the murk of (their last release) Panic on the Noon Meridian, Delaney fed the band a healthy dose of underground West Coast psych. This helped the band see a feel good light that helped them recover from the heaviness of Panic. These songs are for spring and summer listening and are meant to add a bit of happiness to our daily struggle of keeping up the faith and fighting the good fight.]

#12. Jametatone – Frog In The Pot / J. Ashley Miller / December 21, 2017
[New 10-song album from Jametatone, the solo project of J. Ashley Miller who also records with his band as Metatone. J. Ashley Miller is the 2016 Charlotte Street Generative Performing Artist Award Fellow. He is a composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist. His genre-bending trans-modern work has been performed everywhere from YJ’s to the Kauffman Performing Arts Center, to the MoMa PS1 in NYC. Ashley utilizes a diverse range of technologies, techniques, and collaborators to access obscure facets of the human emotional landscape. You can view more of Ashley’s work at http://www.jametatone.com.]

#13. SSION – O / Dero Arcade / May 11, 2018
[SSION is a multifaceted creative project spearheaded by Cody Critcheloe. An art-punk act fronted by flamboyant vocalist/artist Cody Critcheloe, Ssion recorded a series of underground releases during the 2000s, yet were perhaps best recognized for their extravagant live show. Ssion (pronounced “shun”) were founded in Kansas City, MO, by Critcheloe, who studied at the Kansas City Art Institute, and draw from a range of influences, including the punk spectacle of Iggy Pop and the dance-party new wave of the B-52’s as well as performance art and gay culture. Critcheloe’s artwork graces the cover of Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Fever to Tell (2003) and the video for Liars’ “There’s Always Room on the Broom” (2004). Besides Critcheloe, Ssion’s membership includes, among others, backup vocalists Taylor Painter-Wolfe and Shannon Michaels, who respectively create costumes and stage props for the act’s live shows. Critcheloe made his recording debut as Ssion in 1999 with Fucked into Oblivion, a self-released cassette/CD-R. I Don’t Want New Wave & I Don’t Want the Truth, another self-released CD-R, followed in 2001. In 2003 Ssion made their label debut, releasing the Minor Treat EP and the Opportunity Bless My Soul album on Version City Records. Next, following a self-released album, Glory Hound (2005), and EP, Street Jizz (2006), Ssion signed to Sleazetone Records. In 2008 the label released the Fools Gold album and the accompanying Clown remix EP. ~ Jason Birchmeier]

#14. Under the Big Oak Tree – The Ark / DashGo / August 31, 2018
[3rd album from St. Joseph, Missouri based band made up of Kristin Hamilton on guitar & vocals; Doug Ward on bass & vocals; Simon Fink on mandolin, violin, banjo & vocals; and Jason Riley on electric & nylon string guitar. Under the Big Oak Tree’s honeyed blend of vintage folk, acoustic country, and traditional bluegrass has been described as “warm” and “picturesque” with “flawless harmonies.” (St. Joseph Newspress). The band’s 2014 debut recording stood out as “one of the most lush, beautiful records to come out of the local scene,” and made multiple year-end best lists. (St. Joe Live) The group’s second album, Local Honey was released on MudStomp Records in January, 2016 and hailed for it’s “crisp production and stellar musicianship” (The Hank Williams Reader) and christened as “sweet on the ears” (Madisen Ward- Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear).]

#15. Howard Iceberg & The Titanics – Netherlands / Howard Iceberg / March 29, 2018
[Howard Iceberg on lead vocals & harmony vocals; Rich Hill on piano, organ & harmony vocals; Bryan Hicks on bass, electric bass & harmony vocals; and Doug Auwarter on drums. Words and music by Howard Iceberg © 2017 Howard Iceberg. All rights reserved. Produced by Howard Iceberg and Rich Hill. Recorded by Pat Tomek at Largely Studios and Rich Hill at The Hilltop. Mixed by Howard Iceberg & Pat Tomek. Legendary Kansas City Singer Songwriter – Howard Eisberg records and performs under the name Haoward iceberg. Heis one of the most prolific and poetic songwriters of the Kansas City music scene. He has written hundreds, possibly thousands of songs. Howard has done all of this while also leading a distinguished career as an immigration attorney, and he has donated much of his time and music to valuable projects that serve our community. Howard Iceberg began performing in coffeehouses in the late 1980s with fellow area independent songwriters Scott Hrabko and Iris DeMent. Over the past three decades he has released countless CDs, and recorded multiple collections of songs. In 2011, Howard Iceberg & The Titanics released a seven CD, box set, of 106 new songs, all instant classics. In 2014 he released a collection called Spring 2014, on his birthday May 9, 2015 he released, Smooth Sailing which included 13 new songs. In September 2016 Howard released a 2 CD set of 26 new tracks called, “Kansas City Songs.”]

#16. The War and Treaty – Healing Tide / Strong World Entertainment / Aug. 10, 2018
[Full length album debut from Michael Trotter Jr & Tanya Blount-Trotter are from Albion, Michigan. For Michael Trotter Jr., the journey began in 2004, when he arrived in Iraq, an untested soldier stricken by fear and self-doubt. His captain made it his personal mission to see to Trotter’s survival. The unit was encamped in one of Saddam Hussein’s private palaces, and in a forgotten corner in its basement, they found a black upright piano that once belonged to the dictator himself. When Trotter shared the fact he could sing, he was encouraged to teach himself to play piano on that confiscated keyboard. “I wrote my first song after that captain was killed,” Trotter recalls. “I sang it for his memorial in Iraq.” Soon after it became his mission to sing at the memorial services for those that had fallen. For the next three years, he sang songs that brought solace and comfort to the members of his unit. His efforts eventually garnered wider recognition as well. He came in first place in “Military Idol,” the army’s version of “American Idol,” during a competition held in Baumholder, Germany. Following his discharge, he was featured on the Hope Channel program “My Story, My Song.” Then he met Tanya Blount. Blount’s musically influences include Mahalia Jackson, Sister Odette and Aretha Franklin. The two fell in love, got married and used the experiences they had gained to create a new musical collaboration. The couple then secured the services of musicians whose skills add a distinctive sound to The War and Treaty’s blend of roots music, blue grass, folk, gospel and soul. Their 2017 EP Down to the River was released July 21, 2017. Recorded in Albion, Michigan, Down to the River boasts a sound that’s both stirring and sensual, driven by joy, determination and an unceasing upward gaze. The music is visceral but never morose, flush with emotion but void of despair… a style that touches on a variety of genres, but never finds itself confined to anyone. The arrangements are uncluttered– harmonies, basslines, guitar and mandolin licks, settle drum patterns and keyboards create an immensely moving soundscape — but the sentiments and emotions are fully realized and soar with a steady, chilling assurance. “The recording process wasn’t like anything I ever experienced,” Tanya recalls. “This EP has allowed me to breathe musically. I feel like all I have wanted to express for the past ten years has come forth with what we’ve done. The combination of heart, soul and the overwhelming amount of love that Michael and I have for one another comes across in this record.“ “I was sitting on the banks of the Euphrates River in Baghdad dreaming about one day being able to play and sing professionally for people all around the world,” Michael reflects. “As we recorded our music, I constantly had flashbacks of those desert dreams. I thought to myself that this is actually the perfect ending to usher in a new beginning in my life.” ] [First Played February 7, 2018]

#17. Other Americans – Other Americans EP / AWAL Records / June 29, 2018
[Debut self-titled EP from Julie Berndsen on lead vocals, Adam Phillips on drums, Brandon Phillips on guitar, Zachary Phillips on bass. 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, Radar State and Brandon Phillips and The Condition, Other Americans is a virtual Midwestern supergroup of sorts. 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.” With first date jitters behind them, the duo enlisted drummer Adam Phillips, bassist Zachary Phillips and late keyboardist Ehren Starks, who passed away suddenly in March 2018, and began writing the material that would become the EP. The band premiered the late night public access by-way-of 120 Minutes-inspired video for lead single, “Murdering Crows,” directed by artist Adrian Halperin, via The Spill Magazine in May 2018, exposing the band’s brand of kickass dance rock to a broad and international audience. Superlatively catchy and conjuring up well-intentioned comparisons to Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Fiery Furnaces, and even a jauntier and more aggressive Passion Pit, the new EP captures the excitement and spontaneity that punctuates coastal indie rock while embracing elements of the electronic dance rock that populates midnight warehouse parties. “All the basic tracking [for the EP] was done at Element Recording and was mastered by Nanos,” he recalls. “Then I took it to my spot and worked and reworked it all for a year until it sounded like something none of us had heard before.” Prior to the EP’s release the band makes their hard fought and won live debut on June 11, 2018, at Kansas City’s Riot Room, an already sold-out performance supporting singer songwriter Meg Myers. The band will also release their video for “Make Me Afraid,” directed by Todd Norris and Mitch Brian, in coming weeks. Illuminated with the knowledge that the journey is as important as the destination, Phillips admits to looking forward to the period of dues paying that their debut brings. “I’m looking forward to all the firsts;. first show. first record. first tour. Magical thinking could have me pining for a post-Grammys Maserati coke party by the sea, but if I’m all wrapped up in making that fantasy come true, I’ll miss the fun of being present for the firsts and the fifths and the tenths.” From there the plan becomes a bit more complicated, “ The ‘Plan” as I see it is to con some major label artist into taking us out as support, steal their identities on laundry day, have reconstructive surgery, then only tour in countries without U.S. extradition treaties,” Brandon jokes.]

#18. Cat Power – Wanderer / Domino Recording Co / October 5, 2018
[10th studio album by Cat Power The album was produced entirely by Marshall herself and was written and recorded in Miami and Los Angeles over the past few years, she stated: “The course my life has taken in this journey—going from town to town, with my guitar, telling my tale; with reverence to the people who did this generations before me. Folk singers, blues singers, and everything in between. They were all wanderers, and I am lucky to be among them.” The album includes a collaboration with Lana Del Rey, whom Marshall opened for on the European leg of her LA to the Moon Tour. It is her first album to not be released on Matador since 1996. In support of the release, Marshall has embarked a world tour, that began in September. Charlyn Marie “Chan” Marshall was born January 21, 1972, She is better known by her stage name Cat Power. She is a singer-songwriter, musician, occasional actress, and model. Cat Power was originally the name of Marshall’s first band, but has become her stage name as a solo artist. Born in Atlanta, Marshall was raised throughout the southern United States, and began performing in local bands in Atlanta in the early 1990s. She was discovered opening for Liz Phair in 1994 by Steve Shelley of Sonic Youth and Tim Foljahn of Two Dollar Guitar, with whom she recorded her first two albums, Dear Sir (1995) and Myra Lee (1996), on the same day in 1994. In 1996 she signed with Matador Records, and released a third album of new material with Shelley and Foljahn, What Would the Community Think. Following this she released the critically acclaimed Moon Pix (1998), recorded with members of Dirty Three, and The Covers Record (2000), a collection of sparsely-arranged cover songs. After a brief hiatus she released You Are Free (2003), featuring guest musicians Dave Grohl and Eddie Vedder, followed by the soul-influenced The Greatest (2006), recorded with numerous Memphis studio musicians. A second album of cover tracks, Jukebox, was released in 2008. In 2012 she released the self-produced Sun, which debuted at number 10 on the Billboard 200, the highest charting album of her career to date. Critics have noted the constant evolution of Cat Power’s sound, with a “mix of punk, folk and blues” on her earliest albums, and elements of soul and other genres more prevalent in her later material.]

#19. U.S. Girls – In a Poem Unlimited / 4AD / February 16, 2018
[6th studio album from U.S. Girls, the recording moniker of American-Canadian musician Meghan Remy. Formed in the United States in 2007 as a noise-pop project, Remy later moved the band to Toronto after marrying Canadian musician Max “Slim Twig” Turnbull. She released music on a variety of independent labels in both the United States and Canada before signing to 4AD in 2015. Her first record for that label, Half Free, was released the same year. Half Free garnered a Juno Award nomination for Alternative Album of the Year at the Juno Awards of 2016, and was a shortlisted finalist for the 2016 Polaris Music Prize. In a Poem Unlimited is her follow up and second release on 4AD.] [First play February 28, 2018]

#20. Meshell Ndegeocello – Ventriloquism / Naive / March 16, 2018
[Singer-songwriter, rapper, bassist, and vocalist. Her music incorporates a wide variety of influences, including funk, soul, jazz, hip hop, reggae and rock. She has received significant critical acclaim throughout her career, and has had ten career Grammy Award nominations. She has been credited for having “sparked the neo-soul movement.”Ventriloquism is the 12th studio album from Meshell Ndegeocello. The album covers eleven R&B and pop tracks originally recorded in the 1980s and 1990s. A portion of the profits of the album will go to the ACLU. This album follows “Comet, Come to Me”, her 11th studio album.]

#21. Marcus Lewis Big Band – Brass and Boujee / Independent / August 24, 2018
[Brass & Boujee, the dynamic collaboration between The Marcus Lewis Big Band, Kemet the Phantom, and Kadesh Flow. Marcus has performed at the Grammy Awards, the New Orleans Jazz Fest, the Glastonbury Fest, Nobel Peace Prize Concert and the North Sea Jazz Fest, Sydney Opera House, and the White House. TV shows include SNL, David Letterman, The Today Show, Jools Holland, Arsenio Hall, and American Idol. Marcus has performed with are Aretha Franklin, Prince, Janelle Monáe, Bruno Mars, B.o.B, and Jidenna.]

#22. Cowboy Junkies – All That Reckoning / Latent Records / July 13, 2018
[The Cowboy Junkies are an alternative country and folk rock band formed in Toronto, Ontario, Canada in 1985. The group was formed in 1985 by Alan Anton (bassist), Michael Timmins (songwriter, guitarist), Peter Timmins (drummer) and Margo Timmins (vocalist). The three Timmins are siblings, and Anton worked with Michael Timmins during their first couple of bands. John Timmins was initially a member of the band but left the group before the recording of their first album. The band line-up has never changed since, although they use several guest musicians on many of their albums, including multi-instrumentalist Jeff Bird who has performed on every album except the first. The Junkies’ 1986 debut album, produced by Canadian producer Peter Moore, was the blues-inspired Whites Off Earth Now!!, recorded in the family garage using a single ambisonic microphone. The Junkies gained worldwide fame and recognition with their second album, The Trinity Session, recorded in 1987 at Toronto’s Church of the Holy Trinity. Their sound, again using the ambisonic microphone, and their mix of blues, country, folk, rock and jazz earned them both critical attention and a strong fan base. The Los Angeles Times named the recording as one of the ten best albums of 1988. The Cowboy Junkies have gone on to record a total of sixteen studio albums and five live albums, and remain an active band for over thirty years.]

#23. Broken Arrows – Street Flowers / Intelligent Design / Aug. 3, 2018
[Guest Howard Iceberg sings lead and backing vocals on “Recognize My Heart.” Drums & percussion tracks recorded at Roll Away The Stone Studio. Album notes from Barry Lee: Broken Arrows started recording Street Flowers during the last months of 2017 and into the first of the year 2018. The band had road tested about half the songs in concert during the year, so they had a good starting point. Broken Arrows have four songwriters in the band, and they all wrote material for the record. Sessions for the basic tracks were done at Dave Storms’ studio, The Storms Cellar and the vocals and guitar tracks were finished at Cricket Palace, Mike Penner’s studio. Mike Mixed & Mastered and produced the album. About a third of the way through the sessions band member Barry Lee’s wife Caroline took a turn for the worse and his involvement lessened as he stayed with her to take care of her in her final days. The band recorded a couple of tracks, “Not Coming Back” and “Put Me Down” without Barry but refused to do any more recording until he was able to return. The first song Barry did after Carolyn died was “Recognize My Heart.” Barry was still in shock and you can hear it in his voice on that song. The album has gotten airplay on 102.7, Little Steven’s Underground Garage on Sirius XM and extensively on 90.1 FM KKFI. It was also favorably reviewed in Tuning Fork and in a national publication, Blurt. Early next year Broken Arrows will have a single release on Big Stir Records in L.A.. The photos on the album cover were taken by Barry Lee in and around Lawrence, Kansas. For some reason, there are lots of street flowers there. Broken Arrows are: Barry Lee on vocals, acoustic & electric guitars; Mike Penner on lead guitar & vocals; Bill Ryan on lead guitar & vocals, John Chevalier on bass, acoustic guitar & vocals; and Dave Storms on drums, percussion & vocals.]

#24. Slights – Flow State / Slights / November 30, 2018
[Slights is a collaboration band between Ben Parks & Matthew Dunehoo. In late January, 2017 they recorded an album at Ghost Cat Studios in San Francisco w/ Ryan Kleeman and their friend Andrew Skikne on bass. Ben Parks is also visual artist & painter as well as part of the band, Of Tree. Matthew Dunehoo is also a filmmaker & actor, and has been a member of the bands: Loose Park, Baby Teardrops, Doris Henson. On Nov, 7, we interviewed Ben Parks & Matthew Dunehoo who joined us to talk about the debut release of their new band Slights. The new 11-song album was created over the past year. Matt is also the founder of Elk’s Pride Pictures, based in KCMO. More information at http://www.slightsband.com]

#25. Superchunk – What a Time to Be Alive / Merge / February 16, 2018
[11th album release from band formed in 1989 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Superchunk is Mac McCaughan (guitar, vocals), Jim Wilbur (guitar, backing vocals), Jon Wurster (drums, backing vocals), and Laura Ballance (bass, backing vocals). Since releasing their first 7-inch in 1989, Superchunk has run the gamut of milestone albums: early punk rock stompers, polished mid-career masterpieces, and lush, adventurous curveballs. Recorded by Beau Sorenson at Manifold Recording, Pittsboro, NC., except “Break the Glass” and “I Got Cut” at Overdub Lane. Mastered by Matthew Barnhart at Chicago Masterin.]

#26. Amen Dunes – Freedom / Sacred Bones Records / March 30, 2018
[The 5th studio album from Amen Dunes the musical project formed by American singer-songwriter and musician Damon McMahon in 2006 in New York. In addition to his regular collaborators Parker Kindred and Jordi Wheeler, Freedom features Delicate Steve and underground Roman musician Panoram. Chris Coady  (Beach House) produced. The record was recorded at Electric Lady Studios in NYC and Sunset Sound in LA.]

#27. Blood Orange – Negro Swan / Domino Recording Co / August 24, 2018
[Devonté Hynes aka David Joseph Michael Hynes was born December 23, 1985, better known as Blood Orange and formerly Lightspeed Champion, is a British singer, songwriter, composer, producer, dancer and director. From 2004 to 2006, Hynes was a member of the band Test Icicles, playing guitar, synth, and occasionally performing vocals. They released one full-length album in 2005. Hynes went on to release two solo studio albums as Lightspeed Champion and subsequently four more as Blood Orange, between 2008 and 2018. He has written, played or produced for artists such as Tinashe, Solange Knowles, Sky Ferreira, FKA twigs, Haim, Florence and the Machine, Carly Rae Jepsen, Diana Vickers, The Chemical Brothers, Kylie Minogue, A$AP Rocky and Blondie. Hynes was voted the 49th ‘coolest person in rock’ in NME’s 2007 Cool List, jumping to position 20 in the following year’s list.]

#28. Dirty Projectors – Lamp Lit Prose / Domino Recording Co / July 13, 2018
[8th studio album from Brooklyn based band, formed in 2002. The band currently consists of primary recording artist and core member David Longstreth (vocals, guitar), alongside longtime bass guitarist Nat Baldwin, Mike Daniel Johnson (drums), Maia Friedman (guitar, keyboards, backing vocals), Felicia Douglass (percussion, keyboards, backing vocals) and Kristin Slipp (keyboards, backing vocals). Since its formation the band has released eight full-length studio albums, and has had numerous lineup changes, with major contributions from guitarist and vocalist Amber Coffman from 2006 to 2013. “If 2017’s Dirty Projectors was the band’s dark night of the soul, Lamp Lit Prose marks a vibrant rebirth. Bright, colorful, and bursting with hope, the music here splits the difference between pop instinct and avant-garde ambition, live-band rigor and super-synthetic production—think Talking Heads for the 2000s. And where lead Projector Dave Longstreth’s songs have, in the past, tended toward high concepts, here he dwells on the rush of simple things: optimism (“Right Now”), romance (“Break-Thru”), and pure, unfiltered excitement (“I Feel Energy”). It features assists from Rostam, Amber Mark, Fleet Foxes’ Robin Pecknold, and HAIM.”]

#29. Parquet Courts – Wide Awake / Rough Trade / May 18, 2018
[6th studio album from Parquet Courts, of Denton, Texas, currently residing in New York City, New York. The band consists of Andrew Savage on vocals & guitar, Austin Brown on vocals & guitar, Sean Yeaton on bass, and Max Savage on drums. The band released their debut album, American Specialties, as a limited cassette release, in 2011. The band’s second studio album, Light Up Gold (2012), was initially released on Savage’s Dull Tools label and later reissued on What’s Your Rupture? in 2013.[1] Light Up Gold received widespread critical acclaim in both the DIY underground and mainstream rock press. In 2014, the band reached #55 on the Billboard albums chart with its third studio album, Sunbathing Animal. Later in 2014, the band released “Uncast Shadow of a Southern Myth” as a single under an alternative name, Parkay Quarts. Soon after they released their fourth studio album, Content Nausea, on which Sean and Max were absent, due to other commitments.The following year, the band released a mostly instrumental, experimental EP, entitled Monastic Living. On February 4, 2016, the band announced their fifth studio album, entitled Human Performance. The album was released on April 8 through Rough Trade. On October 13, 2017, the band’s co-frontman A. Savage released his first solo album, Thawing Dawn, through Dull Tools.]

#30. Danielle Nicole – Cry No More / Concord Records / February 23, 2018
[Nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album. Danielle Nicole sings and plays bass on all tracks, with special guest musicians like Sonny Landreth on slide guitar, Walter Trout on guitar, Kenny Wayne Shepherd on guitar, Johnny Lee Schell on guitar, Monster Mike Welsh on guitar, Brandon Miller on guitar, Luther Dickinson on guitar. Danielle Nicole was born Danielle Nicole Schnebelen. Her self-titled solo debut EP was released March 10, 2015 on Concord Records. The self-titled EP features Grammy Award-winning producer-guitarist Anders Osborne, Galactic’s co-founding drummer Stanton Moore and keyboardist Mike Sedovic. On February 25, 2015, American Blues Scene premiered the track “Didn’t Do You No Good” off the new EP. Danielle Nicole was previously in the band Trampled Under Foot with her brothers Kris and Nick Schnebelen. At the 2014 Blues Music Awards, Trampled Under Foot’s album, Badlands, won the ‘Contemporary Blues Album of the Year’ category. At the same ceremony, Danielle Nicole, under the name of Danielle Schnebelen, triumphed in the ‘Best Instrumentalist – Bass’ category. The band was also nominated in the ‘Band of the Year’ category. In September 2015, her debut album, Wolf Den, was released on Concord Records. It reached number 2 in the Billboard Top Blues Albums chart in October that year. Danielle Nicole’s second solo album, Cry No More, peaked at # 1 in the Billboard Top Blues Albums chart. Bill Withers wrote one of the teacks on the new album.]

#31. Grand Marquis – Brighter Days / King Forward Records / April 28, 2018
[KC based American Roots, Blues, & Prohibition Jazz band, formed in 1998 have released 7 albums, including a 7” 45 rpm vinyl recorded at legendary Sun Studio in Memphis, TN. The band is: Ben Ruth on upright bass, sousaphone, backing vocals; Chad Boydston on trumpet, backing vocals; Ryan Wurtz on electric and acoustic guitars; Trevor Turla on trombone, backing vocals; Fritz Hutchison on drums, backing vocals; Bryan Redmond on lead vocals, soprano, alto, tenor & baritone saxophones.]

#32. Carswell & Hope – Exit Plan EP / Silly Goose Records / May 22, 2018
[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 Ireland and has found a new home on the plains of Kansas.]

#33. Kadesh Flow – Room Service EP / Ryan Davis / March 30, 2018
[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 various bands throughout the city. The Room Service EP was conceived between shows at MAGfest 2018, when Kadesh Flow, Atlas, and Bill Beats began creating in their hotel room. Producers/Writers include: Kadesh Flow, Atlas, Bill Beats, Shubzilla, Eye-Q, O.Super. Mixed By: Kadesh Flow. Mastered By: Out D Park Productions.]

#34. The Phantastics – Life of the Party EP / Kemet Creative / Aug. 24, 2018
[Eight member band from Kansas City formed in December 0f 2010 made up of: Kemet the Phantom -lead vocals; Kim “Phirst Lady” Newsome on lead vocals; JJ Cantrell on lead guitar & vocals; Danny Florez on electric bass; Ashley Thompson on drums, Ernest Melton on saxophone; Ryan Davis on Trombone and rap vocals; Austin Quick on keyboards. The Phantastics specialize in genre-blending dance floor activators. In 2015, the music group was crowned “Kansas City’s best party band” by the Kansas City Star. Musicianship and diversity are at the core of their success. Rock, Rap, Dance, Funk, Jazz and Soul are all incorporated into their music. “The band that can do it all”, according to I Heart Local Music, has shared the stage with some of music’s most legendary acts including George Clinton and the Parliament Funkadelic.]

#35. David Byrne – American Utopia / Todomundo – Nonesuch / March 9, 2018
[David Byrne’s first solo studio album since 2004’s Grown Backwards. Even though since then he has released albums with Brian Eno, Fat Boy Slim, and St. Vincent. The album is his 11th outside of his work with talking Heads. The new album is one part of a larger multimedia project entitled Reasons to Be Cheerful which aims to give reasons for being happy and optimistic in spite of political strife and environmental problems. The project was entitled after the Ian Dury song “Reasons to Be Cheerful (Part 3)”. David Byrne writes: “Is this meant ironically? Is it a joke? Do I mean this seriously? In what way? Am I referring to the past or the future? Is it personal or political? These songs don’t describe an imaginary or possibly impossible place but rather attempt to depict the world we live in now. Many of us, I suspect, are not satisfied with that world—the world we have made for ourselves. We look around and we ask ourselves—well, does it have to be like this? Is there another way? These songs are about that looking and that asking. This album is indirectly about those aspirational impulses. Sometimes to describe is to reveal, to see other possibilities. To ask a question is to begin the process of looking for an answer. To be descriptive is also to be prescriptive, in a way. The act of asking is a big step. The songs are sincere—the title is not ironic. The title refers not to a specific utopia, but rather to our longing, frustration, aspirations, fears, and hopes regarding what could be possible, what else is possible. The description, the discontent and the desire—I have a feeling that is what these songs touch on. I have no prescriptions or surefire answers, but I sense that I am not the only one looking and asking, wondering and still holding onto some tiny bit of hope, unwilling to succumb entirely to despair or cynicism.”]

#36. Chris Hazelton’s Boogaloo 7 – The Basement Beat / Sunflower Soul / July 20, 2018
[Hammond organist Chris Hazelton and his large-group Boogaloo 7 pay homage to greats such as Lonnie Smith, Jimmy McGriff, Grant Green, and Lou Donaldson with their groove-centered brand of jazz, all the while pushing the genre forward with exciting new and original music. More info at: http://www.chrishazelton.com. Chris Hazelton on Hammond B-3 organ; Nick Howell on trumpet & tamborine; Nick Rowland on alto & tenor sax (tracks 1, 2, & 4); Zak Pischnotte on alto & tenor sax (tracks 3, 5, & 6); Brett Jackson on baritone sax; Matt Hopper on guitar; Danny Rojas on drums; and Pat Conway on congas (tracks 1-4, 6), bongos & cowbell (Track 5); Juan-Carlos Chaurand on congas (Track 5); John Kizilarmut on timbales & güiro (Track 5). Recorded live to 8-track analog tape, mixed, and produced by Chris Hazelton at the FORTRESS OF SOULITUDE. Mastered by Adam Boose at Cauliflower Audio. Pressed by Gotta Groove Records. Chris Hazelton’s Boogaloo 7 will be releasing a single 7″ called “100 Days, 100 Nights” also on July 20, but released on Lugnut Records as part of a tribute to Sharon Jones and The Dap Kings.]

#37. My Oh My! – The War Outside / My Oh My! / May 19, 2018
[My Oh My! is: Stephen Berry on guitars; Grant Buell on pianos, Organ, & Wurlitzer; Sarah Dolt, Stephanie Gaumé & Melissa Geffert on vocals; Jason Harper on bass guitar & tenor saxophone; Jacob Horpinjuk on drums & percussion; and A.M. Merker on lead vocals, guitar, and songwriting. Produced by My Oh My! and Joel Nanos, and recorded, engineered, and mixed by Joel Nanos at Element Recording Studios, and mastered by David Gaumé at Forest Sounds, North Hollywood, CA. More info at: http://www.myohmykc.com]

#38. Hi-Lux – Hi-Lux EP / Hi-Lux / February 1, 2018
[HI-LÜX is Julia Haile on vocals, Nick Howell on keyboards & organ, Kian Byrne on drums and vocals, Pete Leibert on bass, Tim Braun on guitar. Hi-Lux is based in KC. The band brings together elements of soul, reggae and funk for a unique and dance inspiring sound. More info at: http://www.hi-lux.bandcamp.com]

#39. Eems – Dreems / Phillip Jackson / June 26, 2018
[Eems is Phillip Jackson, a KC based ukulele loop artist, singer songwriter, rapper, pianist, drummer, The resonance of his bright musical sounds, and lyrical calls, are woven through genres of folk, hip hop, pop, and dance influences. He has shared the stage with notable hop hop artists, and KC Folk Music Fest, Middle of The Map Fest.]

#40. Of Tree – How Does It Feel / Of Tree / October 12, 2018
[Of Tree is Benjamin Parks on guitar & vocals, Laurel Morgan Parks on violin & fiddle & vocals and John Bersuch on percussion & sub-bass. The band explains “we like to build layers, loop strings, bow guitars and mix sampled beats with real ones as a backdrop for melodies on voice and traditional instruments. Emotional and expressive, our music draws inspiration from loss and triumph, failure and hope.” Of Tree began in 2009 and has taken many forms as it has evolved over time, including a full 5 piece folk band and, at one time, a classical trio backing Parks’ voice and guitar. Of Tree launched a Kickstarter Campaign to help record their new album and release their music on vinyl. Of Tree have been actively writing music for this project since the summer of 2016. Laurel writes “As a married couple its been quite a road for us to be able work through music together without taking things too personally (as people in relationships tend to do), but the magic happened last summer when music started pouring out of us and we were able just allow it to happen. Both of us come from fairly strict religious backgrounds and a lot of our lyrics have to do with healing from those experiences. We also deal with themes of finding new footing in life, moving beyond the past and letting go. Really this album is all about healing on a very personal level.” Laurel writes that she is, “very interested in pushing the boundaries of what instrumentation I can marry to my classical violin training. I have been cross pollinating between electronic music I write on the computer using midi inputs with melodies I write on my violin. I enjoy putting a techno beat behind a folk instrument such as the Kalimba or chime and then morphing that into a journey of layered strings and melodic hooks. I am always interested in melody over lyrics. A lot of the music I wrote for this album is inspired from studying folk traditions such as Celtic fiddling, thematic movie music and Peruvian icaros. ” John Bersuch, has been playing with Of Tree since November of 2016. He adds tasteful beats and enjoys thinking outside the box. He once brought a tree to an “Of Tree” show and played it as a percussive instrument. Ben Parks is a visual artist who also plays in the band Slights with Matthew Dunehoo. Laurel Parks also plays in The Wires, John Bersuch is in Bacon Shoe, RLT, and many others.]

#41. Sara Morgan – Average Jane / River Delta Records / January 26, 2018
[KC based Singer/Songwriter, originally from McGehee, Arkansas. Sara Morgan plays saxophone, guitar, banjo, ukulele, and piano. Sara has opened for BJ Thomas, John Michael Montgomery, John Corbett, Sean Rowe, Chuck Mead, Ben Taylor, and was the preshow before Loretta Lynn at The Uptown, November 2014. Ms. Lynn hosted Sara on her tour bus after Sara’s set and prior to Ms. Lynn’s performance.]

#42. Dragon Inn 3 – Double Line / American Laundromat Records / Aug. 17, 2018
[Kansas City based nad formed in 2012 with Grace Bentley, Sharon Bowie, Philip K. Dickey, E.P. Marcus. Dragon Inn 3’s debut LP clocks in at 28 minutes, but the band spent six years whittling away on the songs that would eventually become Double Line. Combining sugary pop hooks, hypnotic beats, and huge MOOG synths, Dragon Inn 3’s playful take on 80s pop could double as the soundtrack to a John Hughes movie (if John Hughes directed Blade Runner). The cinematic origins of Dragon Inn 3 can be traced back to 2012, when Philip Dickey (leader of the indie-pop group Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin) wrote a theme song for the award-winning short film Ghoul School. “If you watch the trailer you can tell it’s the same premise and look as Stranger Things–we just accidentally made it three years before them,” Dickey says. “I had so much fun making the soundtrack with the director (E.P. Marcus) that we decided to start a band.” Dickey recruited his sister, Sharon Bowie, an occupational therapist, and his wife, children’s librarian Grace Bentley, to help with songwriting and vocal duties. The group self-released the Ghoul School Soundtrack EP in late 2012, receiving high praise from Consequence of Sound, Philadelphia’s WXPN, and The Riverfront Times, before climbing to #1 on Bandcamp’s cassette charts. Then it was back to the studio (i.e. the bedrooms, kitchens, garages, and hotel rooms that doubled as makeshift recording studios). In between full-time jobs, parenthood, graduate school classes, and cross country moves, the members of Dragon Inn 3 put Double Line to tape. “I’m a stay-at-home dad now, so I would work on song arrangements and rough mixes when our toddler was taking his naps,” explains Dickey. “Grace would come home from work and record all her parts after his bedtime. We recorded all the breathy vocals in the living room and all the yelly parts in the garage so we wouldn’t wake him up.” The result is a highly addictive album that creates “a soundtrack for the more introspective moments on and off the dance floor,” according to critic David Greenwald. Opening track “What Kind Of World Are You Living In” plays like Blondie if the band hired Hall and Oates to record guitars. The album takes an intimate turn with “Bad Boy,” Bowie’s dreamy “Rocket Launcher,” and Bentley’s introspective cover of Robin Gibb’s “Juliet.” “3 Minute Mile” swoons with arpeggios and a hypnotic MOOG bass, while Bentley softly repeats the phrase “desperation/bad desire.” Then there are Italo-disco tinged tracks “Backstabber” and “Club Sauce,” with sing-songy pop hooks that harken back to Madonna and Whitney Houston’s greatest hits. “Double Line Theme” and “Murder In The Third” show off DI3’s soundtrack aspirations, and sound like lost Tangerine Dream and Giorgio Moroder B-sides. “Up In The Business” provides indelible synth hooks and a triumphant ending to Double Line. With members spread out over the country (KC, LA, and Springfield, MO), the group signed to American Laundromat Records in early 2018. A demo of “Bad Boy” (co-written with Free Energy’s Paul Sprangers) landed in a commercial for Ryan Adams’ Beats 1 Radio show before the song was even completed.]

#43. Lucy Dacus – Historian / Matador / March 2, 2018
[Lucy Dacus was born 1995 and grew up in Richmond, Virginia . She is an indie rock singer-songwriter who has has released two albums, both on Matador Records: 2016’s No Burden and 2018’s Historian. She started studying film at Virginia Commonwealth University but left to pursue her music career. She first performed in New York in March 2015. Sasha Gessen in Pitchfork wrote about Historian: ” It’s not an easy album to wear out. It lasts, and it should, given that so many of its lyrics pick at time, and the way time condenses around deep emotional attachments to other people.”

#44. FACEFACE – MMmm / FACEFACE / February 15, 2018
[KC based experimental electronic hiphop musical collaboration with.Ryan Lee Toms is a Kansas City based multi-instumentalist, composer and artist who has recorded original experimental dance electronic music as RLT with John Bersuch. Ryan also plays guitar with the math rock band HMPH! and he plays drums for the Kansas City based, 5-piece post-punk deathrock band Beelzebabes. All the while Ryan has also been nurturing a fourth collaboration called FACEFACE, an experimental electronic hiphop musical collaboration with Paul S. Nyakatura, is a Kansas City based award winning voiceover artist, stand up comedian, commercial producer, and rapper and hip hop artist. Paul is the voice of FACEFACE and featured in the FACEFACE video for their new song, “We Awesome,” all shot in one take from Celestial Pictures.]

#45. Soccer Mommy – Clean / Fat Possum Records / March 2, 2018
[Soccer Mommy is the stage name of bedroom pop and indie rock musician Sophie Allison. Allison was born in Switzerland and grew up in Nashville, TN. She attended Nashville School of the Arts, a speciality high school where she studied guitar and played in the swing band. She first picked up a guitar at age 6, which prompted her to start making music. She began posting home-recorded songs to Bandcamp as Soccer Mommy in 2015, during the summer when she was about to leave for college at New York University, where she studied music business. While in college, she played her first show as Soccer Mommy at the community art space Silent Barn in Bushwick, Brooklyn, and shortly after landed a record deal with Fat Possum.She dropped out after a year in 2017 to return to Nashville and pursue her music career. Since beginning her career as Soccer Mommy, Allison has released two full-length albums. Her first, For Young Hearts, was released in 2016 on Orchid Tapes. Her second album, Collection, was released in 2017 on Fat Possum Records. Her debut album proper, titled Clean, was released on March 2, 2018. She has toured with Mitski, Jay Som, Slowdive, Frankie Cosmos, Phoebe Bridgers and others]

#46. Vigil & Thieves – Make Sure They Hear You / Vigil & Thieves / August 24, 2018
[Kansas City based 4-piece band with Sarah Storm on vocals, guitar, & keyboards; Steph Castor on guitar; Matthew Muckenthaler on bass, and Andrew Flaherty on drums.]

#47. The Get Up Kids – Kicker EP / Polyvinyl Record Co / June 8, 2018
[Matt Pryor on vocals & guitars, Jim Suptic on guitar, Rob Pope on bass, James Dewees on keyboards, Ryan Pope on drums. On March 29, 2018, Polyvinyl Records announced on their Instagram account that they had signed the band and that new music will be coming soon. The Get Up Kids are an American rock band from Kansas City, Missouri. 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. They founded Heroes & Villains Records, an imprint of the successful indie rock label Vagrant Records. While the imprint was started to release albums by The Get Up Kids, it served as a launching pad for several side-projects such as The New Amsterdams and Reggie and the Full Effect. The Get Up Kids were viewed throughout their existence as a prototypical emo band, having been major players in the Midwest emo movement of the mid-1990s. Their second album Something to Write Home About remains their most widely acclaimed album, and is considered to be one of the quintessential albums of the second-wave emo movement. However, like many early emo bands, The Get Up Kids sought to dissociate themselves with the term, as it was considered dismissive to be seen as an “emo band.”[8] The band departed heavily from their established style with the release of their 2002 album On a Wire, which saw the band take on a much more layered, alternative rock sound. Years later, guitarist Jim Suptic even apologized for having the influence they did on many of the modern third-wave emo bands, commenting that “[t]he punk scene we came out of and the punk scene now are completely different. It’s like glam rock now … If this is the world we helped create, then I apologize.” Due to internal conflicts, the band broke up in 2005. Three years later, the band reunited to support the tenth anniversary re-release of Something to Write Home About, and soon afterward entered the studio to write new material. In early 2010, the band released Simple Science, their first release in six years, followed in 2011 by the full-length There Are Rules. 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.]

#48. Amanda Fish – Free / VizzTone / September 14, 2018
[Amanda Fish began as a singer songwriter in late 2012, refining her original material as a solo act for 2 years before she formed her band in early 2014, a Roots Rock and Soul project featuring Amanda’s signature ‘from-the-gut’ vocals locked into a sturdy groove. In 2015, she released her first LP, “Down In The Dirt”, on VizzTone Label Group, for which she was awarded the 2016 “Sean Costello Rising Star” Blues Blast Music Award. Amanda and her band set Beale Street on fire in the 2017 International Blues Challenge Semi Finals, playing new material slated for her next release.]

#49. First Aid Kit – Ruins / Columbia / January 19, 2018
[4th full length album from Swedish folk duo of sisters: Klara (vocals/guitar) and Johanna Söderberg (vocals/keyboards/Autoharp/bass guitar). When performing live, the duo are accompanied by a drummer, a pedal steel guitarist and recently a keyboard player. They have now released four albums, two EPs and a handful of singles. In 2015 they were nominated for a Brit Award as one of the 5 best international groups. Sisters Johanna & Klara Söderberg are from Enskede, in the outskirts of Stockholm. Johanna was born Oct 31, 1990 and Klara on Jan 8, 1993. Their father was a member of the Swedish rock band Lolita Pop but he quit before Johanna was born and later became a teacher of history & religion. Their mother is a teacher of cinematography. From childhood, Klara & Johanna were eager singers by giving concerts using a jump rope as a pretend microphone. Klara’s first favorite songs were Judy Garland’s songs from The Wizard of Oz and Billie Holiday’s version of Gloomy Sunday, that she sang without much understanding of the English lyrics. Klara wrote her first song “Femton mil i min Barbiebil” when she was six. They both attended the International English school of Enskede. Klara applied for admission to a music school but she was not accepted. In 2005 when Klara was 12, a friend introduced her to the band Bright Eyes. This led her to country music stars such as Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Carter family, Louvin Brothers, Townes Van Zandt, Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris. The same year she received a guitar as a Christmas present and quickly learned to play it. Johanna enjoyed a wide range of music from Britney Spears to German Techno. However, it wasn’t until watching the film O Brother, Where Art Thou? and listening to the film’s soundtrack that she was inspired to sing “Down to the River to Pray” with sister, Klara. Fascinated by the result they started to sing together at home and then as street singers, in the Stockholm metro and in front of liquor stores. They came up with the name for their band simply by randomly opening a dictionary.Klara and Johanna also started to write and compose their own country-folk songs inspired by Devendra Banhart and CocoRosie, among others, without much influence from their parents who were more fond of Patti Smith, Velvet Underground and Pixies. Their father confessed later in a Swedish radio program that he was astonished and actually a little jealous of the ease his daughters had in producing top-notch music. The most important advice their father gave to them was to sing so loud that even somebody behind the wall could hear it.]

#50. Fantastic Negrito – Please Don’t Be Dead / Cooking Vinyl / June 15, 2018
[Nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Blues Album. Fantastic Negrito was raised in an orthodox Muslim household. His father was a Somali-Caribbean immigrant who mostly played traditional African music. When, at the age of 12, Negrito’s family moved from Massachusetts to Oakland, California. Oakland in 1970s was a million miles from Negrito’s conservative childhood. He went from Arab chants to Funkadelic in one day. By the time he was 20, Negrito had taught himself to play every instrument he could get his hands on. He was recording music, and after some difficulties on the streets he packed his bags and headed to LA, armed with a demo on cassette. Negrito signed with a million dollar deal at Interscope. The record deal was a disaster. Gangsta rap was ruling the airwaves and Negrito was in the wrong place at the wrong era. Negrito came out of the deal with a failed album and his confidence gutted. In 2000, Negrito was in a near fatal car accident that put him in a coma. For four weeks it was touch and go. Because his muscles atrophied while bedridden, he had to go through months of frustrating physical therapy to regain use of his legs. Rods were placed throughout his body. And worst of all, his playing hand was mutilated. Back in Oakland, Negrito forgot about life as a musician. He got married, he planted vegetables, raised his own chickens, and made money growing weed. He also settled into being a man, on his own, clear of the distractions of wanting to be a star. And then his son Kyu was born. He began recording without the hindrances that come with chasing trends. Negrito turned to the original DNA of all American music, the Blues. The beating life had given him primed him to channel his literal and musical forefathers: the Blues musicians of the Delta]

#51. Scruffy & the Janitors – Modeling Is Hard / This Tall Records / March 2, 2018
[Saint Joseph, MO based trio formed by Steven Foster on vocals & bass, Teriq Newton on guitar & vocals, and Trevin Newton on drums. Scruffy & The Janitors have been described as creating working-class punk and catchy alt-rock. Scruffy & The Janitors have played at: SXSW, Middle Of the Map Fest, NXNE, and Lawrence Field Day Fest. They have also opened for:KONGOS, Kitten, J. Roddy Walston & the Business, Brick + Mortar, Radkey, Cheap Girls, Skaters, Bass Drum Of Death, Your Friend, Rev Gusto, and Dreamgirl.]

#52. Second Hand King – Frankie / Second Hand King / June 9, 2018
[KC based Joe Stanziola records as Second Hand King. His name was derived from a 1966 Doo Wop song known as, “The Joker Went Wild” by Brian Hyland. Joe has released five previous albums: All My Fears (2012), The Lower Depths (2013), Chuck (2014), Before The Bomb Drops (2015), and Almost Blue (2016).]

#53. Angélique Kidjo – Remain In Light / Kravenworks / June 8, 2018
[Angélique Kidjo has partnered with producer Jeff Bhasker (Rihanna, Kanye West, Harry Styles, Bruno Mars, Drake, Jay-Z) to create Remain In Light – a new project that finds the Benin-born artist reclaiming rock for Africa, bringing Talking Heads’ landmark 1980 album full circle. The record is a track-by-track re-imagination of the original, considered to be one of the greatest albums of the ’80s and deeply influenced by music from West Africa, notably Fela Kuti’s afrobeat. With her version of Remain In Light, Angélique celebrates the genius of Talking Heads, Brian Eno and the touchstones that made the original so revered and injects it with her euphoric singing, explosive percussion, horn orchestrations, and select lyrics performed in languages from her home country. Remain In Light features appearances by Ezra Koenig of Vampire Weekend, Blood Orange, Tony Allen, Antibalas Horns, Angélique’s longtime guitarist Dominic James, and Magatte Sow (percussionist for the ‘Black Panther’ film score). On May 5, 2017, Kidjo presented her “Remain In Light” concert at Carnegie Hall. Her sold out performance was a reinvention of the iconic album by the rock band Talking Heads. The concert included special guest Nona Hendryx, Lionel Loueke, Antibalas, Jason Lindner and an unplanned duet with David Byrne on the song “Once In A Lifetime”. Angélique Kpasseloko Hinto Hounsinou Kandjo Manta Zogbin Kidjo, known as Angélique Kidjo (born July 14, 1960), is a Grammy Award-winning Beninese singer-songwriter, actress and activist, noted for her diverse musical influences and creative music videos. Time magazine has called her “Africa’s premier diva”. The BBC included Kidjo in its list of the African continent’s 50 most iconic figures. The Guardian has listed her as one of its Top 100 Most Inspiring Women in the World and Kidjo is the first woman to be listed among “The 40 Most Powerful Celebrities In Africa” by Forbes magazine. The Daily Telegraph in London described her as “The undisputed queen of African music” during the 2012 Olympic Games River of Music Festival. In March 2013, NPR, National Public Radio in America, called her “Africa’s greatest living diva”. Kidjo is listed among the “2014 Most Influential Africans” by New African magazine and Jeune Afrique. Forbes Afrique put Kidjo on the cover of their “100 most influential women” issue in 2015. On June 6, 2013, Kidjo was elected vice-president of the Confédération Internationale des Sociétés d´Auteurs et Compositeurs (CISAC). She now resides in New York City, where she is an occasional contributor to the New York Times. Kidjo has received Honorary Doctorates from Yale University, Berklee College of Music and Middlebury College. She is the 2018 Harvard University Jazz Master In Residence. Her musical influences include the Afropop, Caribbean zouk, Congolese rumba, jazz, gospel, and Latin styles; as well as her childhood idols Bella Bellow, James Brown, Nina Simone, Aretha Franklin, Miriam Makeba and Carlos Santana. She has recorded George Gershwin’s “Summertime”, Ravel’s Boléro, Jimi Hendrix’s “Voodoo Child” and the Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter”, and has collaborated with Dave Matthews and the Dave Matthews Band, Kelly Price, Alicia Keys, Branford Marsalis, Ziggy Marley, Philip Glass, Peter Gabriel, Bono, Carlos Santana, John Legend, Herbie Hancock, Josh Groban, Dr John, the Kronos Quartet and Cassandra Wilson. Kidjo’s hit songs include “Agolo”, “We We”, “Adouma”, “Wombo Lombo”, “Afirika”, “Batonga”, and her version of “Malaika”. Her album Logozo is ranked number 37 in the Greatest Dance Albums of All Time list compiled by Vice Magazine’s Thump web site. Kidjo is fluent in 5 languages: Fon, French, Yorùbá, Gen (Mina), and English. She sings in all of them, and she also has her own personal language, which includes words that serve as song titles such as “Batonga.” “Malaika” is a song sung in the Swahili language. Kidjo often utilizes Benin’s traditional Zilin vocal technique and jazz vocalese. Kidjo is the recipient of the 2015 Crystal Award given by the World Economic Forum of Davos in Switzerland and has received the Ambassador Of Conscience Award from Amnesty International in 2016 She also is included in the exhibits at the National Museum of African American History that officially opened on Sept. 24, 2016 on the National Mall.]

#54. Mary Gauthier – Rifles and Rosary Beads / In The Black / Jan. 26, 2018
[Nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Folk Album. Brand new collection of songs by Mary Gauthier, co-written with U.S. veterans and their families, through Songwriting With Soldiers, a non-profit organization that pairs US veterans with professional songwriters. These songs are a glimpse inside the hearts and souls of both male and female soldiers, and their spouses. From Pop Matters: “SongwritingWith:Soldiers is an organization founded by songwriter Darden Smith that holds retreats pairing wounded veterans with established songwriters to help them to find a voice to express their experiences and through their sharing work towards emotional and spiritual healing. Songwriters who have participated in the program include Beth Nielsen Chapman, Marshall Crenshaw, Radney Foster, and Amy Speace, and some of the songs produced have been recorded by major country artists including Willie Nelson, Trisha Yearwood, Luke Bryan, and Garth Brooks. Mary Gauthier is a natural to serve as a contributor to this cause, her powerful autobiographical songwriting on past records addressing such topics as addiction, abandonment, and the search for meaning amidst pain. Turning her empathetic ear to the plights of others, she guides a group of veterans and their families through the composition of 11 highly effective and affecting songs. Of the experience, Gauthier writes “None of the veterans are artists. They don’t write songs; they don’t know that songs can be used to move trauma. Their understanding of song doesn’t include that. For me, it’s been the whole damn deal. Songwriting saved me. It’s what I think the best songs do, help articulate the ineffable, make the invisible visible, creating resonance, so that people (including the songwriter) don’t feel alone.” Gauthier was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. Born to a mother she never knew and left in St Vincent’s Women and Infants Asylum, Gauthier was adopted when she was a year old by an Italian Catholic couple from Thibodaux, Louisiana. At age 15, she ran away from home, and spent the next several years in drug rehabilitation, halfway houses, and living with friends; she spent her 18th birthday in a jail cell. Struggling to deal with being adopted, she used drugs and alcohol. These experiences provided fodder for her songwriting later on. Spurred on by friends, she enrolled at Louisiana State University as a philosophy major, dropping out during her senior year. After attending the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts, she opened a Cajun restaurant in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, Dixie Kitchen (also the title of her first album). Mary ran, and cooked at, the restaurant for eleven years. She was arrested for drunk driving opening night, July 12, 1990, and has been sober ever since. After achieving sobriety, she was driven to dedicate herself full-time to songwriting, and embarked upon a career in music. She wrote her first song at age 35. She sold her share in the restaurant to finance her second album, Drag Queens in Limousines, in 1998. The summer of the release of this album, she was invited to play 11 major folk festivals, including the Newport Folk Festival. Drag Queens in Limousines won in The 1st Annual Independent Music Awards for Folk/Singer-Songwriter Song, and she was nominated for Best New Artist of the year by the Boston Music Awards. She was nominated for three Gay and Lesbian American Music Awards (GLAMA) and won best country artist of the year. In 2002 her third album, Filth and Fire, was named “Best Indy CD of the year” by Jon Pareles of The New York Times. She moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 2001 and secured a publishing deal with Harlan Howard Songs, then secured a record deal with Lost Highway, a division of Universal Music, in 2003. Her first major label release, in 2005, Mercy Now was on the top 10 list for the year in dozens of publications, including NY Times, LA Times, Daily News, and Billboard Magazine.]

#55. Kian Byrne – Up & Down / Kian Bryne / July 11, 2018
[Kian Byrne is a Kansas City based multi-instrumentalist. He plays drums in The Elders, and drums for Hi-Lüx, and bass for The New Riddim, and for YUM. You can learn more at: kianbyrnemusic.com]

#56. Yo La Tengo – There’s a Riot Going On / Matador Records / March 16, 2018
[15th album from band formed in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1984. Since 1992, the lineup has consisted of Ira Kaplan (guitars, piano, vocals), Georgia Hubley (drums, piano, vocals), and James McNew (bass, vocals). In 2015, original guitarist Dave Schramm rejoined the band and appears on their f14th album, Stuff Like That There. Despite achieving limited mainstream success, Yo La Tengo has been called “the quintessential critics’ band” and maintains a strong cult following. They chose the name “Yo La Tengo” (Spanish for “I have it”; or referring to a female-gender object or person, also “I’ve Got Her”) in an effort to avoid any connotations in English. The name came from a baseball anecdote. During the 1962 season, New York Mets center fielder Richie Ashburn and Venezuelan shortstop Elio Chacón found themselves colliding in the outfield. When Ashburn went for a catch, he would scream, “I got it! I got it!” only to run into Chacón, who spoke only Spanish. Ashburn learned to yell, “¡Yo la tengo! ¡Yo la tengo!” instead. In a later game, Ashburn happily saw Chacón backing off. He relaxed, positioned himself to catch the ball, and was instead run over by left fielder Frank Thomas, who understood no Spanish and had missed a team meeting that proposed using the words “¡Yo la tengo!” as a way to avoid outfield collisions. After getting up, Thomas asked Ashburn, “What the hell is a Yellow Tango?”]

#57. Kississippi – Sunset Blush / Bug Crusher Records / April 6, 2018
[Debut full length album from Philadelphia based indie folk band fronted by Zoe Allaire Reynolds (with Adam DaSilva, Jeremy Probst, Allegra Eidinger (They/Them), and Kaylen Alan Krebsbach.]

#58. Gully Boys – Not So Brave / Gully Boys / August 12, 2018
[Minneapolis, Minnesota based three piece all female band, with Kaytee Callahan on vocals & guitar, Natalie Klemond on bass/ & vocals, and Jazmyne McGill ~on drums & vocals. All songs written and performed by Kathy Callahan, Nadirah McGill, and Natalie Klemond. Recorded and mixed by Nick Tveitbakk at Pachyderm Studio. Mastered by Bruce Templeton. More info at http://www..gullyboys.bandcamp.com]

#59. The Big Iron – The Big Iron / The Big Iron / April 27, 2018
[The band’s 4th full-length was produced, mixed and mastered by Duane Trower at Weights and Measures Soundlab. http://www.wmsoundlab.com Album cover and photos by Todd Zimmer. All songs by The Big Iron. It’s the band’s follow-up to 2014’s “We Will Fall”, 2008’s “Thanks for the Therapy,” and their 2001 debut recording, “Bury My Mistakes.” Ricky Reyes on guitar; Jon Paul on drums; Jeff Pendergraft on vocals, and Mike Farren on bass. More info at: thebigiron.bandcamp.com/]

#60. Serene Fiend – Sowing Discord / DK Records / July 27, 2018
[Industrial pop-rock project from Lawrence, Kansas based Joel Bonner. Vocals, guitar, bass, synthesizers, Drum Programming, Mixing, Mastering by Joel Bonner. Written by Joel Bonner. I Heart Local Music calls Sowing Discord “warm and beautiful, wrapping you up its lush sound.”]

#61. Khrystal. – The Awkward Muva / Khrystal. / July 13, 2018
[Khrystal Coppage is Editor-in-Chief of Khorage Magazine. She served as Production Manager at UMKC University News from 2015 to 2016. She graduated from UMKC in 2016 where she studied Family Studies. She graduated from Kansas City Kansas Community College in 2013. She is a graduate of Sumner Academy of Arts & Science, in KCK. You can hear her debut album at; http://mixtapemonkey.com/2073/khrystal-q-u-a-r-t-e-r-c-e-n-t-u-r-y-l-i-v-i-n-g. Khrystal also released the three song EP, The Glow Up produced by Duncan Burnett on Novembr 7, 2017.]

#62. Salty – Dry Rub / Independent / November 21, 2018
[Salty was formerly know as Lil Toughies. Formed in early 2016. The current lineup includes: Jonathan Brokaw (JB) on guitar and vocals, Zach Turner on synthesizers, Ethan Eckert on drums, and Jesslay Huh on bass. More info at http://www.saltykcmo.bandcamp.com or http://www.saltyisthebest.com]

#63. Blue False Indigo – More Light / Blue False Indigo / September 7, 2018
[They call their music “Spooky-Folk.” Makayla Scott on vocals & guitar; A.J Reynolds on vocals & keys; and Kara LePage on vocals & bass started the band in October 2013, in Springfield, Missouri.]

#64. Thee Devotion – Chapel / Woundup Records / April 7, 2018
[Thee Devotion is a KC based, “chickenshack” & “garage soul” band formed on January 1, 2008 with Davin Watne on guitar, keyboards, harmonica & vocal; Chris Teasely on keyboards, organ, harmonica, flute, trumpet, & vocals; Bruce Eddy on bass and vocals; and Keith Patterson on drums and vocals. Chapel is their second record and was produced by Bill Honan who also played piano and moog. Jesus Negron and Sean Branagan played percussion and David Williams played pedal steel on the record. All songs written by Thee Devotion.]

#65. Christine and The Queens – Chris / Because Music / September 21, 2018
[Chris is the second studio album by French singer Christine and the Queens, released in both English and French versions through Because Music. It was preceded by the release of two singles, each of which were released in both English and French versions: “Girlfriend” / “Damn, dis-moi”, featuring Dâm-Funk, and “Doesn’t Matter” / “Doesn’t Matter (Voleur de soleil)”. An English-language single, “5 Dollars”, was also released alongside an S&M-inspired video, followed by the French version of “La Marcheuse”. Héloïse Letissier (born 1 June 1988), known professionally as Christine and the Queens (or, as of 2017, simply Chris), is a French singer, songwriter and producer. Born in Nantes, France, Letissier studied theatre before forming her solo musical group Christine and the Queens. Letissier has been signed to the independent record label Because Music since 2012. Her work combines music, performance, art videos, drawings and photography.]

#66. The Project H – Everyday, Forever/ The Project H / March 23, 2018
[This is the fourth album from the collective that includes: Clint Ashlock – trumpet, Ryan Heinlein – trombone, Brett Jackson – woodwinds, Matt Leifer – drums, Andrew Ouellette – keys, Dominique Sanders – bass, Jeff Stocks- guitars. The Project H were winners of the 2014 Pitch Music Award for Best Jazz Ensemble.]

#67. No Magic – In Cocoon / French Exit Records / November 9, 2018
[All songs written by Ben Sauder. Produced by Joel Martin. Mixed by Joel Martin and Ben Sauder. Mastered by Steve Squire. No Magic is Ben Sauder on guitars, keys, stairs, vocals, & auxiliary; Joel Martin on guitars, basses, keys, drums, vocals, patience; Heidi Gluck on bass, acoustic guitars, piano, slide guitar, vocals; and Jeff Stolz on drums and modelos. With: Leslie Butsch – Saxophone on “Backspin” and “San Francisco”. Kyle “Strings” Stringer – Bass on “While I Got You” and “Apart”. Brother Bobby Sauder – Bass on “Firefly”. Nicholas Stahl – Drums on “While I Got You”. Chris Luxem – Chorus Chant Vocals on “Smoke”. Garrett Marsh – Acoustic riff on “San Francisco”. Design and layout – Carl Smith. Cover photo – Ga Ji Ashlin Wang. Inside photo – Austin Pulliam.]

#68. They Call Me Sauce – Soul Food 4 / Sauce / November 21, 2018
[Kansas City based Hip-Hop artist Sauce is back with his 4th original release. Sauce’s earlier releases charted on Billboard, iTunes and Amazon Hip-Hop charts. 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, Representative Brandon Ellington, Mayor Sly James. He is co-owner of The Rap Asylum, We are RAP, and owner of Melanin Connoisseur. Sauce has collaborated with visual artists, the hip hop community and with the collective NUBLVCKCITY. Last year Sauce released his EP Summer Sauce which was part of WMM’s 117 Best Recordings of 2017. Throughout November and December he will be touring midwestern and southern cities with Mae C., Kartez Marcel, VP3, and Kadesh Flow. More info at: http://www.soundcloud.com/theycallmesauce%5D

#69. Heidi Phillips & Danny Krause – Honest I’m Fine / Heidi Phillips / June 23, 2018
[Heidi Phillips on vocals, guitar, mandolin, & drums; Danny Krause on vocals, guitar, mandolin, & bass; Zeke Krause on percussion; and Linn Buck on piano. Heidi and Danny played together in the short lived band Abileen who released a great album and broke up just as the album was being released. Before that Heidi was the co-songwriter for the alternative rock band Frogpond that she formed in 1994. Frogpond achieved considerable success and was signed to Tristar Music and Columbia Records. Through a few line up changes the band included Heidi Phillips, Justine Volpe, Krisite Stremel, Megan Hamilton, Tawni Freeland and Billy Johnson who played drums on all of their recordings and who passed away on Feb 14, 2018 at the age of 42.]

#70. The Matchsellers – BLUEGRASTRONAUTS / The Matchsellers / March 16, 2018
[3rd full length release from classically trained violinist Julie Bates from Kansas City, and a Chicago blues guitarist from Warsaw, Indiana, Andrew Morris. The Matchsellers have traveled the US and Europe developing their brand of off the wall bluegrass & old-time music. In 2017 they began collaborating with two of the Midwest’s finest musicians, Chad Graves a dobro player that has been featured in Rolling Stone and The Bluegrass Situation, and Betsey Beymer a much sought after bassist from Lakin, KS.]

#71. HighWesthus – TAKOTSUBO: a love story / Datura Records / Oct. 24, 2018
[Written and produced and performed by HighWesthuss. HighWesthus was born in Chicago and is based in Kansas City. Last year Datura Records released The Trilogy. A set pf three releases that began with the May 2015 release, Part I. The Dead, and continued with the November 2015 release, Part II. The Wise. HighWesthus is a freelance multimedia artist living in Kansas City. He graduated from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2012 with a BFA in Animation. He is one of four owners of Strange Paper Studio, based in Kansas City. HighWesthus specializes in illistration, animation, graphic design, dideo editing, sound editing, music producing, writng anf storytelling.]

#72. St. Vincent – MassEducation / Loma Vist-Concord Music / October 12, 2018
[“MassEducation” a brand new acoustic rendition of her previous album Masseduction, Clark’s fifth studio album, was released in October 2017. Pitchfork writes: “Recorded over two days at Manhattan’s Reservoir Studios studios, MassEducation strips its hypersexual, neon-clad predecessor for parts, exposing its songs as tales of longing and nostalgia. Clark seemed to always know that her record contained two lives: “This needs to be something people can really dance to,” she said of a song on her last album, “until they listen to the words and then they’re crying.” Hiding melancholy behind pop production is nothing new, but on an album so saturated with sadness, these pared-down renderings give Clark a chance to indulge in their underlying sentiments.” Anne Erin Clark was born September 28, 1982, in Tulsa Oklahoma. She is known professionally as St. Vincent, a musician, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and record producer. After studying at Berklee College of Music for three years, she began her music career as a member of The Polyphonic Spree. Clark was also a member of Sufjan Stevens’s touring band before forming her own band in 2006. St. Vincent’s work has received consistent praise for its distinct musical style, which blends soft rock, experimental rock, electropop, and jazz influences. Her debut album was Marry Me (2007), followed by Actor (2009), Strange Mercy (2011), St. Vincent (2014), and Masseduction (2017). She released a collaborative album with David Byrne in 2012 titled Love This Giant. Clark also contributed backing vocals for Swans on their 2014 album, To Be Kind. Her fourth solo album, the eponymous St. Vincent, was named album of the year by The Guardian, Entertainment Weekly, NME, and Slant Magazine, as well as second best album of the year by Time magazine. The album won her a Grammy for Best Alternative Album, her first Grammy award. She was the first solo female performer in 20 years to win a Grammy in that category.]

#73. The Beths – Future Me Hates Me / Carpark Records / August 10, 2018
[The Beths are from Auckland, New Zealand. Elizabeth Stokes on lead vocals & guitar, Jonathan Pearce on guitar & vocals, Benjamin Sinclair on bass & vocals, Ivan Luketina-Johnston on drums & vocals. Their debut album on Carpark Records. Elizabeth Stokes previously worked in a folk band. “Fronting this kind of band was a new experience for me,” says Stokes. “I never thought I had the right voice for it.” All four members of The Beths studied jazz at university, resulting in a toolkit of deft instrumental chops and tricked-out arrangements that operate on a level rarely found in guitar-pop. Beths guitarist and studio guru Jonathan Pearce (whose other acts as producer include recent Captured Tracks signing Wax Chattels) brings it all home with an approach that’s equal parts seasoned perfectionist and D.I.Y. Channeling their stew of personal-canon heroes while drawing inspiration from contemporaries like Alvvays and Courtney Barnett, The Beths serve up deeply emotional lyrics packaged within heavenly sounds that delight in probing the limits of the pop form. “That’s another New Zealand thing,” Stokes concludes with a laugh. “We’re putting our hearts on our sleeves—and then apologizing for it.”]

#74. Stephonne – Caged Bird Sings Songs About Red Beard / Glory Blue Music / July 27, 2018
[Full length debut from Kansas City based singer songwriter and actor, who calls himself the lovechild of Prince and Billie Holiday. 31 year old Stephonne Singleton was born in Kansas City and grew up in the inner-city, of Wyandotte County going to High School at Bishop Ward. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from Benedictine College and his Masters in Entertainment Business from Full Sail University.]

#75. The Fey – Strawberry Lemonade EP / The Record Machine / July 13, 2018
[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, “Don’t let The Fey’s new EP title Strawberry Lemonade fool you; this record is no light beach drink. Rather, it’s a cocktail of the molotov variety, the kind you’ll want to toss into the middle of your ‘songs that rock’ summer playlist. From the opening salvos of ‘Contender’, to the slow burn of ‘Bones Underwater’, to the final soothing swells of ‘The Cool’, Strawberry Lemonade is a masterclass in modern songwriting, arrangement, instrumentation, and production.” Music arranged and composed by Zach Watkins. Lyrics written by Zach Watkins and Ishma Valenti. 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]

#76. Dreamgirl – Dreamgirl / Dreamgirl /January 1, 2018
[Originally formed in 2013, in St. Joe Missouri by members who play with ‘60s-inspired psychedelic & surf rock.The band’s 2015 EP Illuminaughty was self-produced, and recorded over two days, at the home of Austin Marks. The band released their full length album, Dreamgirl on January 1, 2018 Engineered by Sam Stephan and Co-Engineered by Ian Dobyns and Mastered by David Gaumé at Forest Sounds, North Hollywood, CA. The current line-up includes: Lacey Hopkins on lead vocals, Austin Marks on guitar & backing vocals, Sam Stephen on keyboards, Ian Dobyns on drums, Chase Horseman on bass.]

#77. Jake Wells – Orange and Blue – EP / Sound 81 Productions / May 17, 2018
[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.]

#78. Daisy Buckët – Pansy / Independent / July 25, 2017
[Executive Producer: Spencer Brown & Amy Hull. Co-Producer: Michael Wood. Album Concept & Design: Brandon Shelton. Photography: Vixen Pin-Up Photography. All tracks recorded at Sound 81 Productions, Kansas City, Missouri. Mixing & Engineering: Justin Wilson. The album of 10 tracks include five tracks recorded with Jeff Freling of Victor & Penny with Erin McGrane and the Loose Change Orchestra. There are also two tracks recorded with the KC psychedelic glam rock band The Philistines, with Kimmie Queen, Cody Wyoming on backing vocals, Cody Wyoming on guitar, Steve Gardels on drums, Rod Peal on guitar, Josh Mobley on piano, Barry Kidd on bass. There are two original songs written for this album. This past year Daisy has performed with the Sacramento Gay Men’s Chorus, shows in Ohio, Connecticut, and New York at the historic Duplex Cabaret, and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Spencer Brown is a professional actor, singer, spokesmodel, super hero, and has appeared at The Unicorn Theatre, Late Night Theatre, The KC Fringe, Union Station, The Folly Theatre, Off Center Theatre, Just Off Broadway Theatre. Since 2008 Spencer has toured internationally and recorded several albums as a member of the acclaimed The Kinsey Sicks, America’s Favorite Dragapella Beautyshop Quartet. Most recently they were seen on Watch What Happens Live! With Andy Cohen.]

#79. Yanna the Supa Flowa – The Supa Flowa EP / R.I.O.T. LLC / May 4, 2018
[Formerly KC based Supa Flowa, aka Yanna, is a multi-media artist and rapper. The Supa Flowa Ep is a very vulnerable, yet an uplifting play on Yanna’s experience in dealing with anxiety, self doubt, and becoming comfortable with the androgynous, “sunflower dyke” that she is. Her goal is to reach out to queer & LGBTQIA youth; who have endured similar experiences to hers, in finding and cultivating self love and peace of mind.]

#80. Duncan Burnett – The Almighty EP / R.I.O.T LLC / May 4, 2018
[Olathe, Kansas based hip hop artist, singer, songwriter, producer, musician, drummer. From Tim Finn’s Back To Rockville(KC Star) Blog Sept. 9, 2015 – When he settled on hip-hop as his music genre, Duncan Burnett had two missions in mind. The first: Keep the messages positive. “I’m big on spirituality and being a positive influence,” he said. “When I started, my goal was to have my nieces and nephews be able to listen to their uncle’s music and love it and be able to repeat every line and lyric but also to have people my age relate to it.” His second mission was to provide live music during his performances. A trained drummer and percussionist, Burnett, 26, has been performing live since he was 7 years old. Live music, he said, is in his blood.]

#81. Doby Watson – Family Mattress Deluxe / Error Records / February 23, 2018
[Family Mattress Deluxe, a collection of songs written by Doby and co-produced with Zack Hames. Songs written by Doby Watson featuring Adamah, Hanna Maria Albina, Austin Swearengin and AKADUNGEONMASTER. With artwork by Ada Brumback and Nathan Landolt. Doby Watson was born in 1986. Instead of attending college, as Richard Gintowt wrote for The Pitch in 2009, “Watson spent his young-adult years touring the country with a guitar and a box of Clif Bars, one for lunch, then a real meal for dinner, and a bunch of sad and beautiful homespun songs that are as sparse and haunting as those of Leonard Cohen or Jason Molina.” In 2009 Doby released Twenty Two. In 2013 He released Watson & May an EP in collaboration with Margo May that was produced & engineered by Lennon Bone. Double Shift Music released Doby’s album Live-In Son in 2014, and the EP collaborative: Swearengin, Watson & May in 2016. More info at: http://www.dobywatson.bandcamp.com.]

#82. tUnE-yArDs – I can feel you creep into my private life / 4AD / January 19, 2018
[4th album from the music project of New England native Merrill Garbus (born March 4, 1979). Garbus’s music draws from an eclectic variety of sources and utilizes elements such as loop pedals, ukulele, vocals, and lo-fi percussion, in addition to electric bass played by Nate Brenner. Tune-Yards’ 2011 album Whokill was ranked the number one album of that year in The Village Voice’s annual Pazz and Jop critic’s poll. Garbus was raised in New York City and in New Canaan, Connecticut. She attended Smith College. She was a puppeteer for the Sandglass Theater in Vermont and lived in Montreal where she played ukulele in the band Sister Suvi with guitarist Patrick Gregoire & drummer Nico Dann. Merrill’s sister Ruth Garbus is also a musician who has played solo and in the band Happy Birthday. After releasing her first Tune-Yards album in 2006, she moved to Oakland, California, where her partner in Tune-Yards, Nate Brenner, also lives. The first Tune-Yards album, BiRd-BrAiNs was originally self-released by Garbus on recycled cassette tape. It was recorded using only a handheld voice recorder. A limited edition vinyl was released in June 2009, via the Portland-based imprint Marriage Records. In July 2009, it was announced that Tune-Yards had signed to 4AD, and a limited edition pressing of Bird-Brains was released on August 17, 2009. A full worldwide release followed on November 16, 2009 (and November 17 in North America). The autumn 2009 pressing was remastered at Abbey Road Studios by Christian Wright, and includes two new bonus tracks: “Want Me To” and “Real Live Flesh.”]

#83. John Keck – Out In The Cold – 12th Street Singles / John Keck / May 1, 2018
[Written by John Keck. Produced/Engineered/Mixed by Chase Horseman at Element Recording & Mastering Studios. Mastered by Ian Dobyns. John Keck on Guitar & vocals. This EP represents the first studio release in 5 years and is the first of 3 songs in a planned series of work. “Out in the Cold” a reflection on our society. These 3 songs were written while living on historic 12th Street in downtown Kansas City, Missouri. This is John’s first release since his 2013 Jack Moon Sessions, which was recorded at Sun Studios in Memphis. About “Missouri Queen” John Keck wrote: “This is an ode to my single mother and the advice she’s given me. I wanted a short biographical song that allows me to give a frame of reference for where all of my songs come from and this was born. My Grandfather flew a B-29 in WWII called the “Missouri Queen”. There were Japanese fighters with floodlights on their noses that would chase the B-29s and light them up so they could be shot down. She told me that he would say “Don’t get caught in the light”, which is advice that she passed down for me to interrupt My Dad was a pilot and always gone when i was growing up, I would look up at the stars and confuse them with taillights of airplanes. Hence the shooting stars. When my parents separated, my mom returned to the farm where my grandparents lived and it became an integral part of my life. When I pushed my mom for more advice for the song she repeated what she has always told me, which is this story. “A Persian king asked the wisest man of his country for advice that would always be true, and he replied ‘This too shall pass.’”More at: http://www.johnlkeck.com]

#84. Joan Baez – Whistle Down the Wind / Razor & Tie Recordings / March 2, 2018
[Whitsle Down The Wind is the 31st album release from Joan Chandos Baez born January 9, 1941, her first studio album in almost a decade. The album features songs written by such composers as Tom Waits, Josh Ritter and Mary Chapin Carpenter. Joe Henry produced the album. Joan Baez is a singer, songwriter, musician, and activist whose contemporary folk music often includes songs of protest or social justice. Baez has performed publicly for over 60 years,is fluent in Spanish and English, and has recorded songs in at least six other languages. Although regarded as a folk singer, her music has diversified since the counterculture era of the 1960s, and encompasses genres such as folk rock, pop, country and gospel music. She was one of the first major artists to record the songs of Bob Dylan in the early 1960s; Baez was already an internationally celebrated artist and did much to popularize his early songwriting efforts. Baez also performed fourteen songs at the 1969 Woodstock Festival and has displayed a lifelong commitment to political and social activism in the fields of nonviolence, civil rights, human rights and the environment. Baez was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on April 7, 2017.]

#85. Chess Club – Hit The Ball / Black Site / June 9, 2018
[Lawrence Kansas based Emo / math pop band with Griffin Nelson on guitar & vocals, Cooper Avery on drums, and David Krejci on bass.]

#86. Warm Bodies – Warm Bodies / Lumpy Records / February 27, 2018
[Pitchfork’s April 8, 2018 review: Olivia Gibb’s messy, experimental garage rock sounds unhinged and strangely human on Warm Bodies’ debut. Come for the unnerving body horror, stay for the fiery guitar solos. // While some wonder who’s going to make rock’n’roll wild again, Warm Bodies’ Olivia Gibb is barking like a dog out here. The Kansas City, Missouri artist is effortlessly wild. When she sings, she jumps in and out of cartoonish shrieks. Her bug-eyed and immensely expressive live performances would make John Waters proud. If you visit her website, you can buy some ceramic clown nightmares. Punk’s underground has always been flush with fringe characters—Warm Bodies share a label with noxious weirdos Lumpy and the Dumpers, for example—but Gibb stands out from the heap. On Warm Bodies’ messy and muscular debut album, you can find her screaming about her eyes which have fallen out of their sockets. // “My Face Fell Off” is a minute-long blast of surrealist speed punk, so while Gibb screams for help in locating her face, her bandmates come in frenzied. Drummer Gabe Coppage crashes forward at a turbulent clip while Ian Teeple keeps pace, rattling out power chords and guitar solos. This exact sort of noisy punk maelstrom has been the band’s calling card for a couple years now. The song originally appeared on Warm Bodies’ 2016 demo, and while the two versions are similar, you can hear just how much they’ve leveled up. On Warm Bodies, they’re faster, the recording quality is less scuzzy, and most pressingly, Gibb sounds far more unhinged than she did on her relatively more reserved early recordings. // Take “Something Weird Is Eating Me,” a song that addresses the more uncomfortable truths of the human body. After alluding broadly to a “mess” under her clothes, she gets extremely specific: “A burning lump full of yellow gunk/And I’m itchy itchy itchy itchy,” her voice oozing the discomfort that the song’s lyrics so directly imply. Later, when Gibb shouts about her sexual encounter with real-life plane hijacker D.B. Cooper, Teeple sets the stage with a clattering, rapid-fire hook. This is the band’s secret formula: Gibb whips up fever dreams with her singular voice and Teeple grounds everything with earworms and sick guitar solos. // Across its 20 minutes, Warm Bodies isn’t strictly a wall-to-wall shredfest. It’s an album bookended by electronics, opening with the tense swell of warped synths and finishing with the pulse of crackling, ethereal noise. Then there’s “Stinky dUMBOMix,” a song that’s all synthesizers, drum machines, whistles, and handclaps. It’s only a minute long, but it’s a crucial moment that places the music beyond garage punk and into the context of low-key experimentation. // With that handful of left-field sonic tics, Warm Bodies lean fully into the psychedelia that powers Gibb’s lyrics: melted faces, gnarly rashes, dog cosplay, and fucking a never-been-caught skydiving thief. Chaos is an intrinsic part of their DNA, which means more relatable, day-to-day subjects adopt a funhouse-mirror approach. “Psychic Connection” is a love song that’s both surreal and knowable—Gibb breaks down the unspoken “mind control” shorthand you have with the person you love. Then there’s “I Need a Doctor,” where Teeple’s woozy guitar and the call-and-response of “I need a doctor! (She needs a doctor!)” invoke sick-day queasiness. On an album of hysterical vocals and high-speed guitar work, Warm Bodies is riveting because of how human it is—its joy, rage, infatuations, and yes, literal boils.]

#87. Anna Calvi – Hunter / Domino Recording Co / August 31, 2018
[3rd album from London singer. Produced by Nick Launay (Nick Cave) at Konk Studios in London with some further production in LA, the album was recorded with Anna’s band – Mally Harpaz on various instruments and Alex Thomas on drums – with the addition of Adrian Utley from Portishead on keys and Martyn Casey from The Bad Seeds on bass. It has a new rawness, a primal energy into which Calvi pushes the limits of her guitar and voice beyond anything she’s recorded before. Hunter is the embodiment of the feeling of truly letting go. For the songwriter and virtuosic guitarist, it was a catharsis, an opportunity to be more truthful than ever. The first new music since 2014’s collaborative release with David Byrne, Strange Weather EP, her self-titled debut album and the 2013 follow-up One Breath, Hunter is a visceral album exploring sexuality and breaking the laws of gender conformity. A queer and a feminist record, it is galvanising in its hunt for freedom. It was important to Calvi that it was as vulnerable as it is strong; as beautiful as it is harsh; as much about the hunted as it is about the hunter. But she’s careful not to characterise any of these traits as “masculine” or “feminine” – the whole point is that one person, of any gender, can be both. The power is in the contrast itself; in the way she oscillates between extremes, sounding freer than ever before. She wanted to express herself while being “free from the story that either gender is given, free from worrying how people would judge me on what I want to do with my body & myself. For me, that’s quite a utopian vision.”]

#88. The Internet – Hive Mind / Sony / July 20, 2018
[Los Angeles based band with: Syd Bennett, Matthew Martin, Patrick Paige II, Christopher Allan Smith and Steve Lacy. THE INTERNET began as two people – Syd and Matt. Syd taught herself how to record, engineer, and produce at age 15. She also sings, imbuing every song with a sultry, mellifluous, quiet power. Matt produces and plays synths. She’s now 23; he’s now 26. Like all post-modern relationships, the duo initially met on Myspace in 2008, only to meet in-person three years later. THE INTERNET have released two albums previously – 2011’s Purple Naked Ladies, and 2012’s Feel Good. THE INTERNET branched off from the Odd Future collective and started their own band in 2011. Syd had been writing music since she was small; she put this on hold to become OF’s DJ and producer, and picked her songs back up in 2011 to make her first full-length album with Matt. When they play live, THE INTERNET is a band – a six-person outfit whose youngest member is 17. They began playing as a full-band in order to tour behind Feel Good, and the band members all contributed their talents to THE INTERNET’s 2015 album EGO DEATH.]

#89. The Breeders – All Nerve / 4AD / March 2, 2018
[The band’s 5th full-length studio album, released 10 years after their previous album Mountain Battles (2008). The album also marks the band’s first in 25 years with their “Last Splash” lineup. Kim Deal on lead vocals, guitar, moog, casiotone; Kelley Deal on guitar, Kenmore 12-stitch, vocals; Jim MacPherson on drums, Josephine Wiggs on bass guitar, double bass, vocals, cello; (Tanya Donelly on vocals and guitar was also on Last Splash, but left the band to form Belly.) The Breeders were last in Kansas Ciyy on September 3, 2014, at recordBar, with a reunion tour of The Last Slash line-up.]

#90. Sona – Sona EP 2 / Something Sounds Weird / September 14, 2018
[Sona began as the love child of husband and wife Brian and Jenna Goodman. Add Bobby Reeves on drums makes this alternative indie rock shoegaze post-punkLawrence Kansas based band a “power trio.” The EP was recorded at Fire & Ice Studios Baldwin, KS and was engineered/mixed by Steve Squire and mastered by Duane Trower with all songs written by SONA.]

#91. Miki P – Dome of Swallows / Miki P/ September 1, 2018
[Debut full length album from Miki P containing 10 original songs. Kansas City, Missouri Miki P. She 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 first full-length album Irreplaceable in the Spring of 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 has played Middle of the Map Fest, Royal’s Kaufman Stadium, the Record Bar, Uptown Theater, Arrowhead Stadium, Nelson Atkins Museum, the Crossroads Music Festival and the SXSW Music Festival. More info at: http://www.mikipmusic.com]

#92. Noname – Room 25 / Noname / September 14, 2018
[Debut album from Fatimah Nyeema Warner who was born September 18, 1991, and is better known by her stage name Noname. She is an American rapper and poet. Warner is from the Bronzeville neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois, where she began rapping and performing slam poetry in 2010. In 2013, she gained wider recognition following her appearance on the track “Lost” from Chance the Rapper’s popular mixtape Acid Rap. Noname released her debut mixtape, Telefone, on July 31, 2016, to widespread critical acclaim. Noname grew up in the Bronzeville neighborhood of Chicago. She was raised by her grandparents; as a teenager, she listened to blues musicians Buddy Guy and Howlin’ Wolf, and spent time in her mother’s bookstore. She first started writing poetry after taking a creative writing class in high school. As a teen, she spent time in the YOUMedia project—a space for young artists to create and network—then based in the Harold Washington Library. There, she befriended many local talents, including Chance the Rapper. Noname’s interest in poetry led her to compete in local open mics and slam poetry competitions; she placed third in Chicago’s annual Louder than a Bomb competition. Noname gradually turned her talents to freestyle rapping with friends, collaborating with many local Chicago artists including Chance the Rapper, Saba, Mick Jenkins, and Ramaj Eroc. Recorded in about a month’s time, the album chronicles the two years since the release of Telefone, most notably her move from Chicago to Los Angeles and an intense, short-lived relationship. On the experience, she compared her maturity on Room 25 to Telefone, saying “Telefone was a very PG record because I was very PG. I just hadn’t had sex.” Unlike Telefone, Room 25 was created due to a financial obligation. Noname said in an interview, “It came to a point where it was, like, I needed to make an album because I need to pay my rent. I could’ve done another Telefone tour, but I can’t play those songs anymore. Like, I could, but I physically hate it because I’ve just been playing them for so long.” Noname paid for the entire album herself using money from touring and guest appearances on Chance the Rapper projects.]

#93. The UK’s – American Way of Death – EP / The UK’s / November 17, 2018
[Kansas City based band formed in July 2010 with Noah Bartelt on lead vocals & guitar, Scott Combs on guitar & vocals, Katelyn Miles on bass, Tarquin Eugene Kellough on drums. This EP is their follow up release to their 2016 debut album “Bad Seed”, featuring their single “The Poison Squad” released in March of 2018 and four more tracks. More info at: http://www.theuksband.com]

#94. Sunny War – With the Sun / Org Music – Hen House Studios / Feb. 2, 2018
[“Los Angeles-based singer, songwriter and guitarist Sunny War (née Sydney Lyndella Ward) was born to a single mom in Nashville. She had what’s she’s described as a nomadic childhood, moving around from Michigan, Colorado, and living on the streets of San Francisco. Now in her mid-20s, War settled down in Los Angeles as a teenager, and became known for her street playing in Venice Beach. War is a fantastic guitar player. She learned her plucking style by playing “Blackbird” by The Beatles, and by falling in love with the blues. “I feel like I am a blues guitarist, but I don’t think I’m a blues artist,” she says. “I only use the scales and techniques that I know, and the only time I was trained in music was on blues guitar. I really love Elizabeth Cotten and Mississippi John Hurt,” says War.” – from NPR Music]

#95. Cris Williamson – Motherland / Wolf Moon Records / November 14, 2017
[Produced by Julie Wolf. Legendary singer songwriter Cris Williamson recently released her 32nd album, Motherland. Cris Williamson is a brilliant songwriter, poet, pioneer, and renegade who recorded her first album in the 1964 when she was sixteen. Cris Williamson’s groundbreaking album, The Changer and the Changed, was released in 1975, and became one of the best-selling independent releases of all time, selling over 500,000 copies. The sales of these records allowed the independent label Olivia Records to release music from a whole new movement of diverse female artists, all overlooked by mainstream music. Cris Williamson helped to forge a historic movement in the male dominated music industry, fostering the creation of completely female owned record labels, touring companies, and music festivals. The movement, (often misclassified as a genre) was about opening the doors, and smashing glass ceilings, for so many women to follow, who had been shut-out of the game, simply because of their gender. Cris seemed to shrug all of that off with an earthy sexy confidence that makes audiences swoon for her. She wrote music for people desiring to find their own identities in modern folk and pop music. No one had ever courageously written and performed so many brilliant full length albums of songs by women, about women, for women. At the same time, these songs are universal to us all. These songs were all impeccably and professionally produced and have stood the test of time and could go up against any of the songs by Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt, or James Taylor. Only difference is mainstream radio and television has almost completely ignored Cris Williamson. Despite this injustice, through her amazing voice, and spirit, and open heart, Cris has helped make the world a better place for all female and LGBTQIA artists who follow the path she cleared. We owe her for that. Cris Williamson was part of NPR Music’s 2017 feature on The 150 Greatest Albums Made By Women with The Changer and the Changed: A Record of the Times (Olivia Records, 1975) Ann Powere of NPR Music writes: “Produced by Williamson and featuring dozens of the era’s finest women musicians — including guitarists Meg Christian and June Millington, bass virtuoso Jacqueline Robbins and vocalists Holly Near and Margie Adam — Changer blended pop, country and folk elements in songs that were both cuttingly intimate and generously communal. (A few featured large choruses inspired by the sing-alongs women’s music artists inspired in concert.) Williamson’s own keyboard playing ranged from contemplative to dance-floor funky. The clear and confident lesbian desire behind love songs like “Sweet Woman” and “Dream Child” made Williamson a sex symbol; her philosophical side made Changer a record of spiritual growth, too. Speaking what at the time remained mostly unspoken in pop, this album truly changed lives. ” The Cris piece from NPR Music’s The 150 Greatest Albums Made By Women (7/24/2017): “I’m kind of hand-carried, person to person,” Cris Williamson told the journalist Ben Fong-Torres in 1981, when asked how people discovered her music. “There are secretaries who’ve told me they can’t get through the day without running home during lunch hour and playing it.” Such was the impact of the Wyoming native’s voice, clear as a mountain stream, and her empathetic songwriting, which made this album one of the best-selling independent releases of all time and the cornerstone of the feminist “women’s music” movement. Produced by Williamson and featuring dozens of the era’s finest women musicians — including guitarists Meg Christian and June Millington, bass virtuoso Jacqueline Robbins and vocalists Holly Near and Margie Adam — Changer blended pop, country and folk elements in songs that were both cuttingly intimate and generously communal. (A few featured large choruses inspired by the sing-alongs women’s music artists inspired in concert.) Williamson’s own keyboard playing ranged from contemplative to dance-floor funky. The clear and confident lesbian desire behind love songs like “Sweet Woman” and “Dream Child” made Williamson a sex symbol; her philosophical side made Changer a record of spiritual growth, too. Speaking what at the time remained mostly unspoken in pop, this album truly changed lives. —Ann Powers (NPR Music) From http://www.smithsonianmag.com – Ginny Berson belonged to the Furies collective, a radical, separatist household that published journals, taught classes, and advocated communal living apart from men. Judy Dlugacz, 20, had postponed law school to pursue lesbian activism and was interested in finding an economically workable means of serving the women’s community. Performing as a folk musician at area clubs and coffeehouses, Meg Christian was eager to meet other women songwriters like Cris Williamson—who had released her first album in 1964 at age 16. When Williamson came on tour to D.C., Christian and Berson not only arranged to bring other women’s music fans to the concert; in a gesture that changed history, they also scheduled a follow-up interview on Georgetown University’s “Radio Free Women” program. On the show, Berson spoke about how she and other members of the Furies collective were searching for a bigger project to invest in— “something that’s for women, by women, and supported by women’s money”—and Williamson responded with a simple yet provocative suggestion, “Why don’t you start a women’s record company?”]

#96. Adrianne Lenker – abysskiss / Saddle Creek / October 5, 2018
[Adrianne Lenker has been writing songs since she was 10 years old. Her “back story” has been well documented in various interviews and profiles for Big Thief over the last 3 years. Despite, or more likely because of, the constant touring and studio work, the last few years have been some of the most prolific for Lenker as a writer. Songs pop out at soundcheck. They pop out on late night drives between cities. They pop out in green rooms, hotel stairwells, gardens, and kitchens around the world. In the hands of Lenker, songwriting is not an old dead craft. It is alive. It is vital. With little regard for standard album cycle practice or the idea of resting at all, Lenker set out to make a document. Songs can be slippery and following 2+ years on the road with Big Thief, Lenker felt a growing need to document this particular time in her life in an intimate, immediate way. The result is her new album, abysskiss, out October 5th via Saddle Creek. “I want to archive the songs in their original forms every few years,” explains Lenker. “My first solo record I made was Hours Were the Birds. I had just turned 21 and moved to New York City where I was sleeping in a warehouse, working in a restaurant and photographing pigeons. Now five years later, another skin is being shed.” Following a two week road trip through the southwestern United States, Lenker headed into the studio with longtime friend Luke Temple. Temple put on his loosely fitting, bright orange, 100% wool producer hat and for one week they made music. The songs chosen for this collection were the songs that felt the most alive in the room. These are not castaways or B-sides. Some of these songs have been alive for years while some were written just days before the session. Some will appear in different future forms, some will not. The thread that connects these songs is not something that can easily be put down in words. Intuition connects these songs. They are a record of a time. With this collection, Lenker further illuminates to the listening public what those close to her already know; here we have a songwriter of the highest order, following her voice and the greater Voices that pass through her with an unflinching openness and clarity of translation.]

#97. Those Far Out Arrows – Part Time Lizards / High Dive Records / Nov. 2, 2018
[Omaha, Nebraska band formed in 2013, by brothers Ben Keelan-White & Evan Keelan-White wbo perform with Derek Levasseur & Tanner Rogerson. Recorded & mixed by Those Far Out Arrows in Fall of 2016. Mastered by Jon Ochsner at ARC Studios in Omaha, Nebraska music writer Tim McMahan said, “They (Those Far Out Arrows) unapologetically cross ’60s British psychedelic with Bowery proto-punk a la Velvet Underground.” Those Far Out Arrows were recently signed to KC record label, High Dive Records.]

#98. Cat Dail – Fight For Love / Lucky Magnet Records / April 6, 2018
[Singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, & producer Cat Dail, lives some of the time in NYC and some of the time in Chesterfield, NH. She’s released 5 albums on her label Lucky Magnet Records. Cat has been active in the Indie rock scene since the 1990s, leading her NYC band, Cat played a residency at the Bitter End, and most colleges and clubs from Vermont to Virginia, Colorado to California. More info at: http://www.catdail.com]

#99. Superorganism – Superorganism / Domino Records / March 2, 2018
[Superorganism is an indie pop band that formed in early 2017. The group is made up of 8 members, one of which is a 17-year-old Japanese girl only known as Orono. The 7 other members go by the names of Harry, Emily, Ruby, B, Tucan, Soul, and Robert. The group, started with members from all over the world including The United States, Japan, South Korea, London, Australia, and New Zealand, makes original internet-age electronically-tinged indie pop music. Bandmembers Harry, Emily, Ruby, B, Tucan, Soul, and Robert were all longtime friends who decided it was finally time to work together. Harry and Emily met Orono during one of their old band’s Japan shows (she attended as a fan), and they struck up a Facebook friendship with their future bandmate. After discovering she could sing, they invited her to add lyrics and vocals to a demo they’d been working on for a new project at the beginning of 2017.]

#100. Car Seat Headrest – Twin Fantasy / Matador / February 16, 2018
[Twin Fantasy (Face to Face) is the eleventh studio album by indie rock band Car Seat Headrest, released on February 16, 2018. It is a complete re-recording and reworking of the band’s sixth studio album, Twin Fantasy, released in 2011. Originally a started as a solo recording project by 26 year old, Will Toledo, in Leesburg, Virginia. Toledo chose the name “Car Seat Headrest” after recording the vocals of his first albums in the back seat of his car, for privacy. Car Seat Headrest released 12 albums on Bandcamp. Toledo’s production has gradually grown less lo-fi, but he still remains an effective example of the DIY ethic. Toledo saw a large influx of new fans with his 2011 release Twin Fantasy, which has become the most popular of his self-released albums. In September 2015, Car Seat Headrest announced on his Facebook page that he had signed an album deal with Matador Records. In October 2015, Car Seat Headrest released the compilation album, Teens of Style under the label. This was his first album that was not self-released via Bandcamp. The new album, Teens of Denial, was created with traditional studio processes. Car Seat Headrest is currently on tour in the Northwest, and after a May 8 show in Brooklyn, the band travels to Europe for dates in May and then will be back touring the state through June and July.]

#101. Joan As Policewoman – Damned Devotion / Play It Again Sam / Feb. 9, 2018
[Joan As Police Woman, is Joan Wasser, born July 26, 1970), she is an American musician, singer-songwriter and producer. She began her career playing violin with the Dambuilders and played with Black Beetle, Antony and the Johnsons, and Those Bastard Souls. Since 2004 she has released her solo material as Joan As Police Woman. She has released five regular studio albums, one EP, a number of singles and a collection of covers. Throughout her career, she has regularly collaborated with other artists as a writer, performer and arranger. “Tell Me,” is the first single from the new album. Joan Wasser talked about its plea for openness and intimacy, “I am always wanting more intimate dialogue,” she says. “Fear of being vulnerable, future tripping and feelings of shame, paranoia and jealousy get in the way. You got to separate now what’s real, what’s not real – stop using jealousy (not real) as a way to avoid having to clarify and tell me what you really want (real). Why don’t we try trusting each other enough to be fully transparent? What is there to lose?”]

#102. The Sexy Accident – Chamcakes Babypagne / Jesse kates / Sept. 8, 2018
[Chamcakes Babypagne is a selection of songs from The Sexy Accident’s sixth full-length album, Champagne Babycakes, re-imagined and reconstructed by Steve Fisk, namelessnumberheadman, Akkilles and many talented guest musicians. All songs written by Jesse Kates / Halaster Music [ASCAP] except You’ve Got To Ride Your Bicycle Ha Ha Ha by Jonas Kates. Mastering by Mike Nolte at Eureka.The Sexy Accident is a pop band from Kansas City. They’ve released over 70 songs on six albums and four EPs. Their September 23, 2016 album, Chanpagne Babycakes included 12 songs produced by Seattle legend Steve Fisk, and a game deck of 45 cards designed by Gavin Snider. The current line up consist of: Jesse Kates on guitar & vocals, Ramone Hall on drums, Jamie Lin on vocals, Pete Marten on bass, and Ryan Leip on keys.]

#103. Oh Dear Oh My – ASHDLA’ / Oh Dear Oh My / July 11, 2018
[KC synth/drum duo, is made up of Rani & Curt. This is their 2nd release. They’ve been playing locally for 3 years. This EP Ashdla’ is named for the Navajo word for Five. There are five tracks on their EP, as Curt is himself Navajo. Oh Dear Oh My tend toward dark & dancy but can’t seem to commit to a single rock genre.]

#104. Wade D. Brown – From A Child / Wade D. Brown / May 25, 2018
[Debut album from Wade D. Brown on vocal, guitar & harmonica; Colby Earleywine on percussion, Katie West on bass; Mike West on banjo & mandolin. Produced, recorded, mixed, and mastered by Mike West at 9th Ward Pickin’ Parlor in Lawrence, KS February 2018. All words and music Copyright 2018 Wade D. Brown. Wade D. Brown grew up in small town rural Kansas and describes having a “dreamers disease” from a very young age. He quotes Kerouac, Woody Guthrie, and Waldo Emerson for developing his curiosity about being a “life long freedom seeker.” The notion of “self obtained freedom” is the central issue at the heart of Wade D. Brown’s music. With primary influences from pre-war delta and ragtime blues, medicine show music, bluegrass, vaudeville, and country folk, Wade D. Brown’s music is a contrast of light and dark themes. Songs like Home Country Pie and Summer Bliss paint pictures of simple happiness, while songs such as Old Habits and Paper Cups evoke a sense of complex loneliness. Wade D. Brown says that his goal as a songwriter is to “use music rooted in traditional forms with a poetic lyric to create an original sound that challenges the listener emotionally and conceptually.”]

#105. Foxing – Nearer My God / Triple Crown Records / August 10, 2018
[Third album from the critically acclaimed St. Louis based band formed September 2, 2011 with: Conor Murphy, E.M. Hudson, Enrique Sampson, Jon Hellwig. Pitchfork writes: “The band’s previous albums, The Albatross and Dealer, were bookended by muted introductions and finales, hand-crafted keepsakes meant to be dog-eared and footnoted. Nearer My God is likewise a closed system bound with melodic and lyrical leitmotifs, but designed more like a multimedia extravaganza. About two minutes into the opener “Grand Paradise,” Murphy is “shock-collared at the gates of heaven” when the drums finally come in and it’s a legit drop for light shows they’ll never afford at festivals that have never considered booking them. Nearly an hour later, he cries, “Heaven won’t take me in”.” Produced and Engineered by Chris Walla and E.M. Hudson. Additional production by Mike V. Davis. Additional Engineering by Conor Murphy, Enrique Sampson, Joe Reinhart, Mike V. Davis. Editing by Ryan Wasoba, Mike V. Davis. Mastered by Joe Lambert. Arrangements by E.M. Hudson. Lyrics by Conor Murphy.]

#106. Erin Eades – Diary / Erin Eades / October 19, 2018
[Debut EP from Erin Eades on acoustic guitar, cigar box guitar, vocals; Lucas Parker on electric guitar, bass (tracks 1, 2, 4, 5); Kenny Carter on bass (track 3); Colby Earlywine on drums; Jamie Malone on background vocals; Jay Vern on piano, B3 organ. Erin Eades is a singer-songwriter in Kansas City, MO. Originally from the mountain state of West Virginia, Eades began making music at the age of 12, when out of boredom her father handed her a 1950’s Gibson that had been stored away, waiting for someone to play. It wasn’t long before she began writing songs, recording her first album at age 17 as part of the duo Special Guest. After a more than decade-long hiatus from music, Eades began playing music again after moving to Kansas City and began her solo career in 2015. She has since played dozens of venues in the Kansas City area, won the 2016 HRC Kansas City Battle of the Bands Acoustic Stage, and has started to play more regionally, sharing her heartfelt lyrics, classic melodies, and percussive guitar style with audiences in the Midwest. Her music is genuine, and shares bits of her story, drawing from experiences that many find relatable. Influenced by the strong female singer-songwriters she listened to growing up, including Joni Mitchell, Carole King, and Jewel, she followed their lead and added her own tinges of twang, angst, and blues. Eades released her debut single, “Looking From the Bottom” in 2017.]

#107. Timbers – Timbers / Timbers / March 1, 2018
[Timbers first professionally recorded, mixed and mastered release. Recorded in the basement of Jacob’s Well Church in Kansas City, Missouri. Tracked, mixed and mastered by Mike Crawford. Timbers includes: Aaron Mitchum on guitar & lead vocals; Abigail Jones on banjo, guitar & vocals; Devon Teran on guitar, lap and pedal steel guitar, & dobro; Riley Taylor on upright bass & electric bass; and Nate Lewis on drums.]

#108. Bernice – Puff: In the Air Without a Shape / Arts & Crafts / May 25, 2018
[Toronto-based experimental soul-pop group includes; robin dann, thom gill, dan fortin, felicity williams, and phil melanson. “Puff: In the air without a shape,” is that band’s airy, minimalist follow up to their 2017 kaleidoscopic maximalist EP. Puff was produced by Grammy Award-winner Shawn Everett). Reminiscent of recent records by Feist and Frank Ocean where soulful vocal melodies take the lead over sparse, airy arrangements, Bernice’s new album attempts to reproduce the playful intimacy of the band’s live show.]

#109. Femi Kuti – One People One World / Knitting Factory Records / February 23, 2018
[Olufela Olufemi Anikulapo Kuti was born June 16, 1962 and is popularly known as Femi Kuti, a Nigerian musician born in London and raised in Lagos. He is the eldest son of afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti, and a grandchild of a political campaigner, women’s rights activist and traditional aristocrat Funmilayo Ransome Kuti. Femi’s musical career started when he began playing in his father’s band, Egypt 80. In 1986, Femi started his own band, Positive Force, and began establishing himself as an artist independent of his father’s massive legacy. His first record was released in 1995 by Tabu/Motown, followed four years later by Shoki Shoki (MCA), which garnered widespread critical acclaim. In 2001 he collaborated with Common, Mos Def and Jaguar Wright on Fight to Win, an effort to cross over to a mainstream audience, and started touring the United States with Jane’s Addiction. In 2004 he opened The Shrine, his club, where he recorded the live album Africa Shrine. After a 4-year absence due to personal setbacks, he re-emerged in 2008 with Day by Day and Africa for Africa in 2010, for which he received two Grammy nominations. In 2012 he was both inducted into the Headies Hall of Fame (the most prestigious music awards in Nigeria), was the opening act on the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ European arena tour and became an Ambassador for Amnesty International.]

#110. Melody’s Echo Chamber – Bon Voyage / Fat Possum Records / June 16, 2018
[Melody’s Echo Chamber is the main project of French musician Melody Prochet. When Prochet’s previous project My Bee’s Garden supported Tame Impala on their European tour in 2010, Prochet collaborated with Kevin Parker to produce her new solo material as Melody’s Echo Chamber. The material was recorded in Parker’s makeshift studio in Perth, Australia and Prochet’s grandmother’s seaside home in the south of France. The self-titled debut album was released on Fat Possum Records in the Fall of 2012.]

#111. Noah Davis – Magic – EP / Noah Davis / April 7, 2018
[For Noah, the love of music began at a young age while his father played old gospel and blues albums. Noah recalls his late father explaining the meanings of songs by bands such as Cream, CCR, Curtis Mayfield, The Beatles, Bob Dylan and Neil Young. A multiracial kid whose parents both loved rock and soul. Noah’s parents introduced him to the Ed Sullivan Show. Noah came to realize early in his life that music is NOT about color, but about the heart and soul. Jimi Hendrix’s concept of the musical church made a lasting impression on Noah who took it to heart and fully embraced these ideals, demonstrating that music should not just entertain but speak to and heal, hearts, minds, and souls. Noah Davis released his debut full length album “100%” on March 4, 2016. Noah Davis is releasing a new EP called “A Simple Gospel” on December 8, 2018. More information at http://www.noahdavidmusic.com]

#112. Helen Gillet – Helkiase / Helen Gillet / July 6, 2018
[Cover of English punk band X-Ray Spex from Germfree Adolescents, released Nov. 10, 1978. Written by Polystyrene aka Marianne Joan Elliott-Said born July 3, 1957, a British musician, singer-songwriter, frontwoman for X-Ray Spex. She died of Metastatic Breast Cancer on April 25, 2011, at the age of 53.] [Originally from Leuven, Belgium and now based in New Orleans, Louisiana. Globe Trotting, multi-faceted, jazz-based cellist, singer, composer and improviser Helen Gillet is a “mixed bag” of musical influence. Downbeat Magazine recently nominated her a Rising Star in the 61st Annual Critic’s Poll. She believes music to be an expression of the honest human condition; performing an eclectic mix of French pop, Avant Garde Jazz, North Indian, Folk and Classical styles. Helen Gillet’s 2018 solo album is Inspired by Helkiase, a cure-all medicine invented by the nuns of Notre Dame à la Rose hospital in Lessines, Belgium. (The hospital was one of Europe’s longest continually operating hospitals founded in XIII’s century). Gillet’s latest music deals with the more recent personal layers of complicated grief and finding new strength, sense of humor and inspiration. This recording captures the current spirit of Gillet’s live performance and features her newest original songs “Slow Drag Pavageau” written about legendary dancer and New Orleans bassist Alcide Pavageau, as well as “You Found Me,” “Skin,” and “Vautour,”song inspired by Israeili composer and artist Naama Tsabar. All songs are performed by Helen Gillet using a Boss RC50 Loop station and mainly cello and voice. Tracks 7 “Tonnerre” and 4 “Helkiase” use a Moog Sub Fatty synthesizer and vinyl scratching of a famous 1940 General de Gaulle speech. Live studio sessions and evening concerts recorded by Andrew “Goat” Gilchrist at the House of 1Hz on March 8th and 9th 2018 in New Orleans, LA. Mastered by Bruce Barielle.]

#113. Stacy Busch – 3-Song EP / Stacy Busch / July, 2018
[Stacy says these songs “were written for the Outskrts LBTQ Festival and performed live with live dancers. They are meant to be anthem-like in their themes of coming together as a community.” 28 year old Stacy Busch is originally from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She is a multimedia artist & performer. Her collaborative concert experiences are designed to be provocative and accessible to cultivate broader artistic interest and, reach under-served and/or misrepresented communities. Stacy is the founder and president of No Divide KC, an arts and social justice non-profit that creates artistic events for various social causes. Stacy’s work has been performed nationally as well as in France and Iceland. She recently partnered with Gilda’s Club KC, Owen/Cox Dance and Charlotte Street Foundation to compose and perform the music for “Collective: Our Stories of Cancer.” In 2018, her service with No Divide KC will include partnerships with the Kansas City Ballet School and the Johnson County Library. Stacy’s work has been performed at: the Kansas City Fringe Festival, Art in the Loop Kansas City, the experimental concert series ArtSounds, the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and UMKC Composer’s Guild Concerts. She has partnered with the Kansas City Streetcar, the UMKC dance program, Charlotte Street Foundation and the electronic music non-profit KcEMA. In addition to Kansas City, Stacy’s work has been featured at the University of Colorado-Boulder, the University of Michigan, Western Michigan University, Central Michigan University. It has also been performed by ensembles including: Bent Frequency, the Beo String Quartet and the Zodiac Trio. She is a two-time ArtSounds Grant recipient, a UMKC Women’s Council Grant recipient and was a CITS Scholar at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Stacy received her Masters in Music in composition from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and her Bachelors in Music in composition from Western Michigan University. Her teachers include Rome Prize winners Paul Rudy and James Mobberley as well as Pulitzer Prize winners Zhou Long and Chen Yi. Other influential teachers include Guggenheim Fellow Curtis Curtis-Smith, Christopher Biggs and Lisa Coons. Prior to studying music, Stacy studied print journalism at Boston University.]