Monday, April 18, 2011

Steady Rollin'-Two Gallants

Two Gallants is a relatively unknown band and it is hard to understand that given this song.  Just about everyone I've showed this song to has found it enjoyable, regardless of their musical taste.  It is folk-rock at its finest.  Two Gallants is a duo containing Adam Stephens on guitar and Tyson Vogel on drums.

The song starts out with one of the silkiest finger-picked guitar parts known to man. It has the aspects traditionalists look for, like the alternating thumb-picked bass pattern, mixed with a catchy melody that is enough to please any fan of music.  It might be my all time favorite riff to play on guitar.  It is certainly a riff I dream of writing.

As brilliant as Adam's guitar is in this song, it just might be the drums that make it.  The drummer, Tyson, branches away from the basic drum patterns you typically hear in the genre, mixing in double-bass flams, an array of cymbals, and off-beat snare hits.  Musically, the song is tight and unique.

Adam belts out the lyrics in a pattern that duplicates the melody from the guitar part.  Usually I would frown upon such a tactic, but the melody played on guitar is so catchy that it is worth duplicating.  Adding extra emphasis on such a perfect melody is not a bad thing when tastefully done.  The lyrics also seem to express a disapproval for being content with one place. Life is yours to experience all that you can.

Steady Rollin' is a song that should be in everyone's catalog.  It is one of the most perfect songs I have ever heard.  Been listening to it for years now and it has not gotten the slightest bit old.  Check out more Two Gallants here.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Newport Folk Festival

The lineup has been announced for the Newport Folk Festival. It will take place in Newport, Rhode Island on July 30th and 31st. I was lucky enough to attend this festival last year and it was one of the most enjoyable weekends I've ever been apart of. Every band was great. I was able to discover new music. Also, Newport, Rhode Island is one of the most beautiful towns on the east coast. All in all, it was a weekend I would not soon forget.

Onto this year's edition of the Newport Folk Festival, I was more than intrigued by the lineup. There are a few of my favorite contemporary bands playing like Delta Spirit, the Felice Brothers, and Middle Brother. There are also some elderly artists that still manage to put on a great show like Emmylou Harris and Elvis Costello. And per usual, there are many other bands that will undoubtedly amaze me. My hopes are high for this summer's Folk Festival.

The full lineup is here:  Newport Folk Fest Lineup

And here are some gems from last year: