Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Cincy Groove TV Holiday Special Dec 24, 2008

Tracy Walker & Eliah Gregg, "Santa Baby", Cincy Groove TV Holiday Show

This is a video from Tracy Walker & Eliah Gregg performing "Santa Baby" from the upcoming Cincy Groove TV Holiday Show that will be airing on Dec 24, 2008 here on

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Video - Amber Nash, 11.26.08, Everybody's Records, Cincinnati, OH

video of Cincinnati, OH ukulele player Amber Nash, 11.26.08, Everybodys Records, Cincinnati, OH:


Video - Katie Reider Tribute Show, 11.29.08, Southgate House, Newport, KY

Video from the Katie Reider Tribute Show, 11.29.08, Southgate House, Newport, KY:

Katie's songs performed by Whitney Barricklow, Emily Strand, Screaming Mimes, Kelly Thomas & The Fabulous Pickups

Screaming Mimes, Show Your Love


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Les Paul is a 2008 American Music Master

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame honored Les Paul as the 2008 American Music Master this past Saturday (11/15) at the Playhouse Square State Theater in Cleveland, OH. This was just an incredible night of music and to be in the same room as Les Paul was amazing. There were performances from Hall of Fame members and some of best guitar players today including: James Burton, Duane Eddy, Billy Gibbons and the Ventures along with Jennifer Batten, Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, Eric Carmen, Dennis Coffey, Lenny Kaye, Steve Lukather, Barbara Lynn, Lonnie Mack, Katy Moffatt, Alannah Myles, Richie Sambora and Slash.


Friday, November 14, 2008

Video - Katie Reider Tribute/Benefit Show, 11.8.08, Dirty Jacks, Cincinnati, OH

Video from The Katie Reider Tribute/Benefit Show that took place on 11.8.08 at Dirty Jacks, Cincinnati, OH:

Bands include - Whitney Barricklow, Holly Spears, Jayne Sachs, The Blue Umbrellas, Chakras, Frozen Feet, Jen Foster. Debra Randall did a great job putting this show together. I heard that they actually had Dirty Jacks at capacity at one point.
There is another Katie Reider Tribute Show happening on 11/29/2008 at The Southgate House in Newport, KY. 13 bands, Doors are at 8pm, shows starts at 8:30 pm (seriously its really going to start at 8:30), $7 for ages 21+ and $10 for ages 18-20. All proceeds from the show will goto Karen Reider and their 2 sons.


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Bootsy Collins & Ralph Stanley to perform at 2008 CEA's

Performers for this years Cincinnati Entertainment Awards have been announced. Opening the show will be none other than Bootsy Collins who will be performing a 20 minute tribute to the Godfather of Soul James Brown. After Bootsy, we have 2007 CEA winners The Seedy Seeds (New Artist of the Year, Electronic/Experimental) and The Sundresses (Alternative/Indie). Next up is first time 2008 CEA nominee Eclipse (hip hop category). Closing the show will be legendary bluegrass/country artist Ralph Stanley and The Clinch Mountain Boys. Ralph's connection to Cincinnati comes from his time recording at King Records.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Watch Barack Obama's Acceptance Speech

Watch Barack Obama's historic acceptance speech again -


Barack Obama Elected the 44th President of The United States

barack obama, presidentWASHINGTON – Barack Obama was elected the nation's first black president Tuesday night in a historic triumph that overcame racial barriers as old as America itself.

The son of a black father from Kenya and a white mother from Kansas, the Democratic senator from Illinois sealed his victory by defeating Republican Sen. John McCain in a string of wins in hard-fought battleground states — Ohio, Florida, Virginia and Iowa.

A huge crowd in Grant Park in Chicago erupted in jubilation at the news of Obama's victory. Some wept.

McCain called his former rival to concede defeat — and the end of his own 10-year quest for the White House. "The American people have spoken, and spoken clearly," McCain told disappointed supporters in Arizona.

Obama and his running mate, Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, will take their oaths of office as president and vice president on Jan. 20, 2009.

As the 44th president, Obama will move into the Oval Office as leader of a country that is almost certainly in recession, and fighting two long wars, one in Iraq, the other in Afghanistan.

The popular vote was close, but not the count in the Electoral College, where it mattered most.

There, Obama's audacious decision to contest McCain in states that hadn't gone Democratic in years paid rich dividends.

Obama has said his first order of presidential business will be to tackle the economy. He has also pledged to withdraw most U.S. combat troops from Iraq within 16 months.

Fellow Democrats rode his coattails to larger majorities in both houses of Congress. They defeated incumbent Republicans and won open seats by turn.

The 47-year-old Illinois senator was little known just four years ago. A widely praised speech at the Democratic National Convention, delivered when he was merely a candidate for the Senate, changed that.

Overnight he became a sought-after surrogate campaigner, and he had scarcely settled into his Senate seat when he began preparing for his run for the White House.

A survey of voters leaving polling places on Tuesday showed the economy was by far the top Election Day issue. Six in 10 voters said so, and none of the other top issues — energy, Iraq, terrorism and health care — was picked by more than one in 10.

"May God bless whoever wins tonight," President Bush told dinner guests at the White House, where his tenure runs out on Jan. 20.

The Democratic leaders of Congress celebrated in Washington.

"It is not a mandate for a party or ideology but a mandate for change," said Senate Majority leader Harry reid of Nevada.

Said Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, "Tonight the American people have called for a new direction. They have called for change in America."

source - Yahoo

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Video - Hotel Cafe Tour 08, 11.3.08, Bogarts, Cincinnati, OH

Photos and Video from the Hotel Cafe Tour 08, 11.3.08, Bogarts, Cincinnati, OH:

Photos -
Video -

This show featured Meiko, Thao Nguyen, Alice Russell, Jaymay, Rachael Yamagata


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Midpoint Music Festival 2008, Cincinnati, OH

What a great 3 days of music in my hometown of Cincinnati, OH. The Midpoint Music Festival has become one of the best music festivals around. It takes a tremendous amount of effort to have over 150 bands playing over 3 days in 15 different venues. City Beat Magazine put together a great festival this year. A nice touch was the 20 Scion street cars that were running a loop during the festival to shuttle around patrons, it saved me a lot of walking.

Here are photos I took of the following bands:
Seabird, Daughters and Sons, Addie Loy, Megan King, Ill Poetic, Sonny Moorman, The Newbees, Jon Justice Band, IsWhat, Jayne Sachs, Seedy Seeds, Taini Asili, Tracy Walker, Troubadour Dali, Wussy, Yoshi, The Koala Fires, Bill Kurzenerger

There is also video from most of the bands that were photographed, bands from 9.25 have been added with the rest being added soon!


Saturday, September 6, 2008

Fall Hookahville 2008 Photos

What a great weekend of music at fall hookahville 30! I would have to say the highlight of the weekend for me had to be Arrested Development's set on Sunday 8/31. They have been together for 17 years and have not missed step. Here are my photos from the weekend:

Hookahville 30
Legend Valley, Thornville, OH
Bands photographed: ekoostik hookah, Freekbass, Arrested Development, GreenLeif, Rumpke Mountain Boys, Abigail Washburn & Sparrow Quartet, Perpetual Groove, Super Massive


Photos - Jon Justice Band, 9.6.08, Blue Ash, OH

Photos of the Jon Justice Band, 9.6.08, Blue Ash, OH:


Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Photos - Fall Hookahville 2008, Legend Valley, Thornville, OH

What a great weekend of music at fall hookahville 30! I would have to say the highlight of the weekend for me had to be Arrested Development's set on Sunday 8/31. They have been together for 17 years and have not missed step. Here are my photos from the weekend:

Hookahville 30
Legend Valley, Thornville, OH
Bands photographed: ekoostik hookah, Freekbass, Arrested Development, GreenLeif, Rumpke Mountain Boys, Abigail Washburn & Sparrow Quartet, Perpetual Groove, Super Massive


Monday, August 25, 2008

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Interview with Laura Reed

August 13, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

laura reed deep pocketLaura Reed & Deep Pocket fill the stage with captivating, soul shaking, conscious music. The crowd is emerged with lyrics of truth and a voice of intensity backed by bass, organ, and drums, horns, and harmonies reminiscent of the past days of motown and funk.

The roots of their sound and message stem from Laura’s diverse experience of growing up in South Africa and the American South. Formed in the summer of 2006, the band switches up the music between funk, progressive R&B, and pure SOUL behind Laura Reed’s captivating stage presence.

Throughout their career Laura Reed & Deep Pocket have shared the stage with/recorded with: The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, George Clinton, Peter Rowan, Belita Woods (PFUNK), Gary "Star Child" Shider (PFUNK), Rob Mercurio (Galactic), Larry Jackson (Earth Wind and Fire), Ike Stubblefield (The Funk Bros), Kendra Foster (PFUNK), Sam Bush, The Blue Rags, The Overtakers, Natti Love Joys, The Lee Boys, Dan Adams (Chaka Khan), Blueground Undergrass, DC (Dr. Dre/Erykah Badu), and Pato Banton.

This music is visionary in it's strive to spread a message of empathy and love for humanity in the unconditional form of music and the raw reflection of the human condition. Laura states music as the most honest and pure expression in her life, a language that allows her to release "what I could never even admit to myself or say out lout, but can sing.” When she sings you can feel her soul coming through the speakers, whether it’s smooth R&B, funky reggae, or just down right SOUL MUSIC.

Cincy Groove: Did your gig go well at Floydfest?

Laura Reed: In fact I think it might be in my personal top 5 favorite show we have ever done. There was a really good energy from the crowd. They came with a really nice vibe and we responded to that. It was really awesome.

Cincy Groove: Is there any live recordings of your shows?

Laura Reed: Yeah, there is a lot on and on our website. We are also releasing a live album in October. There's quite a bit of live material out there. I'm not even sure how much, because there are always tapers at our shows.

laura reed deep pocket

Cincy Groove: Is the live recording your releasing in October one whole show or a combination of shows?

Laura Reed: It's actually part of 2 shows. One was on New Years Eve at Tree Sound Studios in Atlanta, which is the studio we work from. The other show was a Pandora private party we did. Pandora footed the bill for hiring a professional film crew to come in and video record the show. The live album will come with a disc of live music from those 2 shows and a live dvd that is in high def.

Read the full interview here

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Interview with Theresa Andersson

August 11, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

theresa anderssonMelody, harmony, rhythm, timbre; these are the traditional building blocks of pop music. Yet although you will find them in abundance on Hummingbird, Go!, the new album by Theresa Andersson hardly sounds like conventional pop. That's because the New Orleans singer-songwriter chose to approach her craft from different perspectives before she even began composing. "I stopped thinking in terms of traditional songwriting," Andersson explains. "I worked on shapes, forms, and textures, scents and colors. Elements which are more earthy and organic inspired me." She would walk along the Mississippi River, or relax in her garden. As ideas emerged, she caught them in her butterfly net – or rather, on her laptop – and let them converge, then blossom.

Produced by Swedish songwriter and recording artist Tobias Fröberg (who also helmed The Last Tycoon for Peter Morén, of Peter Bjorn and John fame), and featuring lyrical contributions from poet Jessica Faust, Hummingbird, Go! evokes a distinctly unique universe via its inventive songs. From the funky backbeat, pizzicato plucking, and vocal leaps of "Birds Fly Away," to the smoldering "Locusts Are Gossiping," with its interwoven vocals – as haunting as any Bulgarian choir – and percussive clicking reminiscent of chattering insects, each cut vibrates with polychromatic detail.

Cincy Groove: Tell me about your new album "Hummingbird Go". Any collaborations? who produced it? How much of it was recorded in your kitchen?

Theresa Andersson: The making of "Hummingbird, Go!" was special. The process was different for me this time as I wrote the music more as one would make a collage piece of art. Finding inspiration in colors, forms and textures in my garden and along the Mississippi river. I handed finished songs to Jessica Faust who magically found just the right words. The entire record was then recorded in my kitchen with Tobias Froberg producing. Tobias and I both grew up on the Swedish island of Gotland. I never knew him then. We met the first time when he played a show in a small New Orleans club 1 1/2 years ago. Working with Tobias really tied my New Orleans influences together with my Swedish background. Tobias introduced me to the fantastic Norwegian artist Ane Brun who contributed her beautiful vocals on the only Swedish track on the album. Also my hero Allen Toussaint joined me on one song.

theresa andersson

Cincy Groove: Who do you consider some of your influences?

Theresa Andersson: A lot of New Orleans retro R&B; Allen Toussaint, Betty Harris, Smokey Johnson. I love Leonard Cohen, Bobbie Gentry and Nina Simone. The Swedish singer/songwriter Cornelis Wreeswijk is awesome.

Cincy Groove: How do you feel the internet has affected the music industry?

Theresa Andersson: My personal experience is that it has opened up a lot of doors. There are a lot more avenues to reach potential listeners/fans.

Read the full Interview here

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Video - Freekbass, 8.1.08, House of Crave, Columbus, OH

Just posted video of Cincinnati funk band, Freekbass from 8.1.2008 at The House of Crave in Columbus, OH:


Interview with Tori Sparks

August 5, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

tori sparksTori Sparks calls Nashville home, but spends most of her time on the road in the U.S. and Europe. Called “a knockout” by the Village Voice, her dynamic live show is equal parts soulful singing and zany stand-up-style humor. Tori’s latest album Under This Yellow Sun was co-produced with indie rock veteran David Henry (R.E.M., Ben Folds, Josh Rouse, Widespread Panic, Cowboy Junkies) , and features players such as Steve Bowman of Counting Crows, Aaron Sands of Jars of Clay, John Deaderick (Patty Griffin, Lucinda Williams), and Pat Buchanan (Mary Chapin Carpenter, Dixie Chicks).

Under This Yellow Sun is the first release under the auspices of Tori’s own record label (Glass Mountain Records) and publishing company (Hand Over Foot Publishing). It has been praised by Relix, Harp, Maverick, Skope, The Nashville Music Guide, XM Radio, and others. After breaking the Top 100 on the RIYL Weighted College Charts, the album was immediately licensed by MTV, Lifetime, and the Oxygen Network for use in their 2008 television seasons. A subsequent feature by XM Radio Unsigned prompted Universal Music France to contact Sparks, has toured in France and other parts of Europe. Universal included Sparks’ single “Cold War” on their double-disc compilation, released internationally in March 2008, which has sold 25,000+ copies to date."Cold War" is also featured on the Paste Magazine New Music Sampler released in June 2008. (from

Cincy Groove: How did you recent show at Sitwell's here in Cincinnati go?

Tori Sparks: I really enjoyed playing there because its kind of an informal setting. The people there are really sweet and its a nice change from all those smokey clubs that I play at sometimes.

tori sparks

Cincy Groove: Do you handle all of the day to day operations of your career yourself?

Tori Sparks: Yes I do, I was with a label, but it didn't really work out because they said they were an all country label and wanted to expand into areas that wasn't country. I think it was some kind of story they told people so they would sign with them. They just weren't very honest people, so ultimately it worked out quite well to go out on my own. It took a while to get out of that situation but now I have complete control over what I am doing. Although its a lot of work and can be difficult, driving to gigs, checking emails, and doing interviews. But at least you know that things are being done the way you want them to get done.

Cincy Groove: Do you mostly do solo gigs?

Tori Sparks: Yes most of the time. I have this really great band that plays with me in Nashville when I have shows there. I would love to take them on the road, its just very difficult to be able to afford to pay a full band on the road. Basically I have to convince these rock and roll clubs that I'm not going to put on a sleepy show because I'm just one girl.

tori sparksCincy Groove: Who are some of your influences?

Tori Sparks: There are so many! I think whatever I'm listening to at the time influences what I'm writing. Here are some longtime favorites, though... Tom Waits, U2, Martin Sexton, Joni Mitchell, Janis Joplin, Billy Bragg, Amos Lee, Bill Withers, Damien Rice, Patty Griffin, Radiohead, Regina Spektor, The Beatles, The Boss (mainly just Nebraska), Ben Folds, Chris Isaak, Feist, David Bowie, Cecilia the Band, David Gray, Jeff Buckley, Leonard Cohen, Ray Charles, Ryan Adams, Nirvana, the White Stripes, Iron and Wine, Wilco, any and all blues, local bands, people who like local bands. And Mitch Hedberg.

Read the full interview here

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Interview with G Love

July 30, 2008

Interview and Photos by Scott Preston

g loveG. Love and Special Sauce’s Superhero Brother is their third album for Jack Johnson’s Brushfire label, and 10th overall (counting their 2002 best-of and last year’s live CD/DVD) in a career that now spans 15 years.

It’s been a long, successful run for the Philadelphia native and self-described “hip-hop blues artist,” whose self-titled 1994 Okeh/Epic Records debut was certified Gold on the strength of the MTV hit, “Cold Beverage,” and a non-stop performing ethic that still has them playing more than 150 shows a year. In fact, the group just recently returned from a headline tour in Australia and Europe that was highlighted by some shows with Jack Johnson. Upon their return to the U.S., the band will be headlining their own outdoor amphitheatre tour with John Butler Trio later this summer.

Superhero Brother, recorded in Philadelphia at The Studio and the band’s own Philadelphonic Studios, as well as Longview Farms Barn in Sturbridge, MA, combines both political and party songs. The album is a reflection of the band’s eclectic recipe for its Special Sauce, from tasty, post-hip-hop Beatles-influenced blues-rock (“Communication”), spicy tropical island rhythms over an Archie Bell and the Drells “Tighten Up” groove (“City Livin’”) and well-seasoned Chambers Brothers-style funk-rock crossed with Cream’s “I Feel Free” (“What We Need”) to sweet, blue-eyed Philly soul (“Crumble”), a red-hot Stones-y “Sympathy for the Devil” vibe (“Peace Love and Happiness”) and homemade, rappin’ blues layered on top of a John Lee Hooker Delta stomp (“Superhero Brother”). (source -

Cincy Groove: How did you recent European tour go?

G Love: It was a lot of fun, I went over there with Jack (Johnson) and we had great crowds every night and good jams on stage. We really got into playing a lot of the new record live, its hitting pretty hard right now which is great.

g love

Cincy Groove: What were you inspired by to write about on the new record "Superhero Brother"?

G Love: I just wanted to make a well rounded record and definitely how I feel about whats going on in the world today, like the war in Iraq and the general state of the union. Thats why you have songs like Superhero Brother and Peace, Love and Happiness.

Cincy Groove: Do you still have a sense of anonymity? Are you able to go out and do things without getting mobbed by fans?

G Love: I'm pretty much in the perfect place right now. I get recognized just enough so my girlfriend thinks I'm cool (laughing), but not enough that it interferes with my family moments with my kid.

Read the full interview here

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Interview with Travis Book from The Infamous Stringdusters

July 29, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

infamous stringdusters, bluegrass, travis bookThe Infamous Stringdusters are the new vanguard of acoustic music. Well crafted songs, vivid arrangements, instrumental virtuosity, stunning improvisation, unique individuality and complete harmony… Bluegrass, Rock, Country, Blues, Folk, and Jazz, the “IS” is American Acoustic Music.

When The Infamous Stringdusters comes out June 10 on Sugar Hill Records, some may assume from the title that it’s a debut recording. Those already aware of the Stringdusters phenomenon will know differently: that 2007’s Fork in the Road was the album that boldly introduced this daring, disciplined band to the world of bluegrass and a wider world of music enthusiasts who heard it and decided: ‘if that’s bluegrass, then I love bluegrass.’ Fork in the Road was named Album of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association. Its title track was named Song of the Year, and the band itself earned the honor of best emerging artist in a competitive field. It was a stunning cap to an amazing 2007.

In their breakout year of 2007, the Infamous Stringdusters played over 150 dates, including the biggest festivals in acoustic music, jammed on major stages with heroes like David Grisman and Sam Bush, and landed a development deal for motion picture music with Lions Gate Entertainment. With the release of The Infamous Stringdusters, 2008 promises more roads and more new fans in bluegrass and beyond. (source -

infamous stringdusters, bluegrass

Cincy Groove: So how did the six of you in The Infamous Stringdusters end up getting together?

Travis Book: Our original guitar player, Chris Eldridge, our banjo player Chris Pandolfi, and our Dobo player Andy Hall all met through mutual friends in Boston. Andy Hall was on his way out of the Berklee School of Music, Pandolfi was on his way in. Chris Eldridge was going to school at Oberlin College in Ohio. Andy Hall then moved to Nashville and was playing in a bunch of different bands. One of them was the Ronnie Bowman Committee with future Infamous Stringduster members Jeremy Garrett (fiddle) and Jesse Cobb (mandolin). So when Pandolfi and Eldridge moved to Nashville the 5 of them put the band together. Then they needed a bass player and they called me, I was out in Durango, CO at the time, to come out and audition. They asked me to join and move to Nashville in Fall of 2005. Then Andy Falco (guitar) replaced Chris Eldridge in Sept of 2007.

Read the full interview here

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Video - Family Groove Company, 7.19.2008, Tabfest, Mendon, OH

Here is some video that I shot this past weekend of Chicago band Family Groove Company:

Video - Family Groove Company, 7.19.2008, Tabfest, Mendon, OH


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Interview with Sheri Miller

July 21, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

sheri millerBorn in a musical household in Long Island, New York, Sheri Miller grew up listening to her mother, an opera singer belt out beautiful arias in the night, while playing classical Debussy piano. Sheri’s uncle, an accomplished recording engineer in Los Angeles, educated Sheri with his hand-made mix tapes of Pink Floyd, Hungarian Gypsy Music, Diamanda Galas and Etta James.

Sheri began playing the piano at an early age, but rebelled by composing her own wild and fantastical original songs. "I remember playing this one song I had made up on the piano, 'The Lost Tribe,' about buffalo, sunsets and gypsy wandering, so many times my mother almost killed me."

While at the University of Pennsylvania studying literature and poetry (in the same class as r&b singer John Legend) Sheri began to sing with a local Philly blues band, while secretly sculpting her own songs, tucked away in her tiny bedroom. But one Sunday afternoon, something magical happened to Sheri, completely changing her life.

"I had been writing songs in my room for months, which was a 20-minute walk from the Penn jazz music room, which had all the practice pianos. And I knew I was definitely not writing enough each day because it was such a big hassle to walk those long blocks downtown. Over the next couple of months, I started dreaming steadily at night about keyboards, about buying a used keyboard. I clearly remember one Saturday night in particular, I had an extremely vivid dream about this small black, white and gray Casio keyboard. The next morning I woke up with the image of the keyboard still clear in my mind, and took a different, more scenic route that day, through an underpass of green trees. So I’m walking, and there’s this one-day church sale, where they had the exact Casio keyboard I had dreamed of the night before. I quickly ran to the ATM, bought the keyboard for $20 and started seriously writing my songs on that sweet, broken-keyed Casio from that day on.”

“Since then, I believe coincidences are just visible lines in our destiny."

After college, Sheri moved back to New York to Park Slope, Brooklyn, and made steady rounds at local open mics like The Raven, while practicing her acoustic guitar and keyboard for hours in her basement apartment. She immersed herself in the poetry of Charles Bukowski, O. Henri, Marcel Proust, Margaret Atwood and Maya Angelou. She melted into Ella Fitzgerald, The Beatles, classical music, Etta James, Stevie Wonder, Joni Mitchell, Otis Redding and Billie Holiday.

Brimming with inspiration, Sheri developed her own sensual soundscape of hypnotic bluesy American soul meets classic British melodic-pop, bringing it to the stages of The Bowery Ballroom, Joe's Pub, World Cafe Live, The Bluebird Cafe, The Canal Room and The Living Room. She has had a song featured on the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame Compilation, Volume 4.

“I feel extremely lucky to be able to create music. I only hope to keep becoming a more honest, genuine, deep, and authentic artist and songwriter, so that people can glimpse a spark of truth in my songs.” (from

sheri miller

Cincy Groove: What are some of your earliest musical memories?

Sheri Miller: Well listening to my mom sing various arias (she is an opera singer), I could always hear her down the stairs, she also played classical piano. When I would be put to bed, I remember hearing the sound just walk up the stairs. A lot of the classical music became embedded into my earliest memories.

Cincy Groove: What kind of music did you listen to when you were growing up?

Sheri Miller: It really varied, my uncle would send me mixed tapes in the mail that would have just about everything on them. A lot of Pink Floyd, Muddy Waters, Etta James. Then he would also send tapes with this gothic classical music, Hungarian gypsy music, really all kinds. He really exposed me to a world of different types of music. He sculpted my tastes early on.

Cincy Groove: I was reading about that Casio keyboard that you used early on in your music career, do you still have it?

Sheri Miller: Yes I still have it, although its not sounding as good as it to. When you turn it on, the buzz that comes from it is almost as loud as the music that is being played. Its missing half the keys, because I'm sure its been around a while even before I got a hold of it. I'm not materialistic, I mean I don't usually attribute too much significance to things. It was just one of the more simple things that changed my life. I look at it as the physical manifestation of where my life was going to go.

sheri millerCincy Groove: So I understand you released your very first cd earlier this year.

Sheri Miller: Yes it is my first EP "Mantra", it came out in February of this year. I feel really lucky to have it out there and people are really responding to it. I hope to put out many more albums, knock on wood (laughing).

Read the full Interview here

Friday, July 18, 2008

Interview with Caroline Herring

July 17, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

caroline herringCaroline Herring digs deep—deep into the rich soil of American roots music for her sound, and deep into the recesses of her own consciousness for her themes. The musically understated, psychologically intense songs of this Atlanta-based Mississippi native ponder the eternal verities while probing the complex nature of contemporary existence; she delivers them in a fine-grained alto replete with the residue of hard-earned insight.

On Lantana, her beautiful and eloquent third album (Signature Sounds), Herring fills the listener’s heart with hope one moment and sends a chill down the spine the next. This pivotal album, which documents a personal and artistic crossroads for its author, cements her status as a truth teller, and no matter how bitter or disturbing the story leading to the truth may be, she approaches it clear-eyed and straight-on, getting down to the nub of it with quiet tenacity. No wonder fellow artist Dar Williams, who co-headlined a European tour with Herring in 2006, described her as “the elusive ‘real thing.’” (from

Cincy Groove: What was it like when you first moved to Austin? I know you came from a pretty small town.

Caroline Herring: It was intimidating, but it was good, its always nice to have connections to plug into when you move to a new place. I was going for my PhD in American Studies which I never finished, but I was able to meet people that way. As for the music scene, I didn't even think I would be playing out for a while so I just went at my own pace. There was a cafe I worked at just so I could see the music for free.

caroline herringCincy Groove: How did you recent trip to Europe go? Where did you play?

Caroline Herring: I just got back 2 weeks ago, I played in The Netherlands and Belgium for about 10 days. I absolutely loved it, it was my 5th trip over to Europe. In past trips, I have played at the Celtic Connections in Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom, Paris, and last year a festival in Denmark.

Cincy Groove: What music was playing in your house when you were growing up?

Caroline Herring: A lot of The Kingston Trio, my dad was really into that 50's folk music. I also listened to a lot of gospel, classical, and R&B music. I really didn't listen to any country at all at the time. As I got older I discovered bands like REM, U2, Joni Mitchell. Then in college I started listening to more contemporary folk music and classic country music, like the Carter Family.

Read the full Interview here

Interview with Speech from Arrested Development

July 17, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

speech, arrested developmentARRESTED DEVELOPMENT Speaks thru music to the world. Speech one of the vocalist for this collective says, Our people have been through so much turmoil and strife for hundreds of years now. We get on stage every night with the mission to broaden the perspectives and give inspiration to rise above the stereotypes and materialism." Unsurprisingly, then, the Grammy award winning group Arrested Development has been devoted to nudging folks in the direction of freedom and spiritual evolution for over 15 years.

The group describes their sound as "Life Music." A.D. respects women, and promotes family, spirituality and "male responsibility." They are about consciousness, the earth, African self determination and love. They define themselves as hip-hop artists but also just artists." They are dancers, vocalists, turntablist, drummers, and everything in between. Arrested Development is and has always been a communal music community with any number of talented members on board, picture your family reunion but more musical. Speech may be the most known member of the group, being the front man, but Dionne Farris, Eshe (Black Life), Rasa Don (Raz), Baba Oje (the elder), Nicha and many others have contributed much to this Kalidescope of image and sound. (from

Cincy Groove: How did Arrested Development first get together?

Speech: Back in 1987 I went to a school called The Art Institute of Atlanta. One of the first members I put in the group was a brother named Headliner. He and I started talking and doing these 2 man shows together. We would bring people on stage to do African dance, graffiti, some rhyming. It really started to grow from there because some of the people that came on stage we would invite to come to the next show. Thats basically how the group grew into what it is today.

Cincy Groove: Did the group have a different approach to this last record "Since the Last Time" compared to your earlier ones?

Speech: Yes, we all did. We worked with a producer, Sam Hollander, out of New York. He is really an old school hip hop professional. We really have been going at this record with a feel good, party attitude. We want you to be able to put on the record with a gathering of friends and have some music with a good vibe to it, but at the same time have some messages in the songs also. We didn't go as heavy on the messages this time around with this record, because we weren't feeling so heavy. We were feeling pretty good about where we were in our personal lives.

arrested development

Cincy Groove: How did you feel about all the attention the group started to get with that first record you put out "3 years, 5 months and 2 days in the life of..."

Speech: It was encouraging but also scary because it was our first album and it was a lot to live up to. I was being compared to Bob Marley at the time which was very scary for me. But of course it felt good to get those awards and recognition from your peers.

Read the full Interview here

Friday, July 11, 2008

Interview with Emily Elbert

July 11, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

emily elbert19 year old Emily Elbert is a singer/songwriter with deep musical roots and a love for creative expression. Her music has delighted audiences and music critics alike with her jazz-infused sound, which she describes as “acoustic soul-folk.” Fresh off a northeast run with G Love and Special Sauce and a showcase spot at the Folk Alliance Festival in Memphis, Elbert is already making a name for herself. Her love of music from around the world, and distinctive combination of jazz, folk, soul, blues, and pop creates a sound that engages the hearts, minds, and ears of listeners around the globe. Emily blends a hip musical perspective with an in-depth knowledge of classic favorites to create unique vocal and guitar arrangements.

Cincy Groove: What kind of music was playing in your house when you were growing up?

Emily Elbert: My dad is a killer pianist, and he introduced me to a lot of different styles - one of the ones that comes to mind first is Brazilian jazz, especially Antonio Carlos Jobim. I love that guy. I cover one of his tunes at shows sometimes, Triste. My mom was real involved in helping introduce my ears to some nice things - James Taylor is a big one, and I was real real into oldies radio. Like 50s & 60s pop. My parents got sick of it I listened to it so much. Ha.

Cincy Groove: When did you first pick up the guitar? the first song you learned to play?

Emily Elbert: I grew up playing piano pretty competitively. But, being a middle schooler, I needed to rebel, and the practice schedule didn't appeal to me too much. So dropped it for guitar when I was about 14 or so. I became totally infatuated with it. I think the day I got it I didn't come out of my room for like 10 hours. I don't really remember my first song, I just wanted to try everything. My first performance was at this retirement party for my school librarian. I played a Ben Kweller song. That was also the first time I sang in front of anyone.

emily elbert

Cincy Groove: Are you working on any new projects?

Emily Elbert: Absolutely. This summer is actually real weird - I tried to (almost) completely clear my schedule so that I could clear my head and write. Got a lot of new tunes goin right now, and will hopefully have a new album out by the end of the year.

Cincy Groove: Who are some of your influences?

Emily Elbert: I love Stevie Wonder, and Joni Mitchell, and Paul Simon, and the Beatles. Also Bob Marley, Incubus, John Mayer, Hendrix, Aretha, and Jobim of course. I love 60s folk rock like CSNY. And funk and blues. And Bobby McFerrin. And there's a new woman out right now named Esperanza Spalding, and she's got the freaking Midas touch. Beautiful. I also flip for a good pop song. I'm a huge Michael Jackson fan, and I love Justin Timberlake. The guy puts on a stellar show.

Read the full Interview here

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Interview with Noah Sugarman

July 9, 2008

Interview and Photos by Scott Preston

noah sugarmanNoah Sugarman hails from the great state of Kentucky where he studied jazz and classical guitar, as well as bluegrass, which is instilled in musicians from that region at a very young age. After 13 years of writing and performing 25 year old Noah Sugarman has created a genre transcending style all to it's own. With melody heavy lyrics from a big rhythm and blues voice touching on deep subject matter, rhythmic finger picking and beats that keep you guessing. Noah Sugarman's recordings and live shows are truly a sight to hear and see. (from

Cincy Groove: I see you are playing the Madison Theater in Covington, KY this Friday.

Noah Sugarman: Yeah we are excited about it. Its the last show of the tour. We have been out on the road for 2 months now, but its been great. But its nice to play the last show of the tour to a home crowd.

Cincy Groove: Who is in your touring band?

Noah Sugarman: All guys from Cincinnati, pretty much my old group The Rudies. Pete plays keyboard, Zach Russell my drummer (who is actually from Indiana), Ian Herzog was the bass player, but now has a 2 year old son and decided to focus on his family. So we got another guy we went to high school with David Lloyd to play bass. I have known all these guys for years, so it makes it easier to go out and travel. They are like my brothers.

noah sugarman

Cincy Groove: I know about your studio cd you released last year "Art of Starting a Fire", I also see you released a 2nd cd "Web b-sides", whats on that one?

Noah Sugarman: Its just basically some demos we recorded. We also did a Thin Lizzy song on there.

Cincy Groove: Are you going to record another studio cd in the future?

Noah Sugarman: Yes, but not quite yet, we are still going to tour this one for a while. I'm writing new songs, but honestly I don't see it coming out in the next year and a half. If we had a bigger fan base I would push to get it out sooner. But we are still going to places we haven't been before. Its more important to me to tour and get my name out, than to rush right back into the studio.

Read the full interview here

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Interview with Johnny James Qualley from Oakhurst

July 7, 2008

Interview and photos by Scott Preston

oakhurst, bluegrassOakhurst has had a reputation for torching bar and theater stages throughout the US with its unique sound and unbridled stage energy for years. But lately, the band has also created a stir on major festival stages, cruise ships and European tours. The band’s adept picking, sweet harmonies, and citybilly swagger have cleary come from playing 200+ shows a year in such varied environments. Oakhurst’s unpretentious, go-for-it interpretation of a genre that’s often handled too reverently, sparks interest in bluegrass by folks who don’t know Doc Watson from Doc Holliday.

Along the way Oakhurst has shared stages with very diverse national talent such as John Hiatt, Nickel Creek, The Flaming Lips, Emmylou Harris, Barenaked Ladies, Yard Dogs Roadshow, Bela Fleck, The Ditty Bops, The Radiators, Junior Brown, Lyle Lovett, Lynyrd Skynard, Johnny Lang & Guster.

Oakhurst has also shared the stage with future and current Colorado legends as well. The list includes Yonder Mountain String Band, Devotchka, Rose Hill Drive, the Motet, Pete Wernick, Drew Emmit, Billy Nershi and Vince Herman. (from

Cincy Groove: So do you handle the bands publicity?

Johnny James Qualley: Yes, I handle the bands publicity. Being a founding member its one of those things I have been doing since back in the beginning. We have everything else in place except a publicist, but since we have all the other stuff taken care of it gives me more time to do the publicity. We have a great booking agent here in Boulder, Co. Its great not to have to worry about booking our shows anymore.


Cincy Groove: How many shows does Oakhurst play in a year?

Johnny James Qualley: Anywhere from 200 - 250 shows a year. So far this year we have been to 9 countries and 25 different states, and the year is only half over. We are getting ready for our first run of the year through the east coast which is always a lot of fun.

Cincy Groove: I have seen Oakhurst perform at 4 hookahville's, how did you end up hooking up with Trickle from Legend Valley?

Johnny James Qualley: Our manager Erin, is married to Hunter Shoemaker who is from Newark, OH. He and his older brother J.R. ended up growing up with Trickle. So 2 1/2 years ago when Hunter came into the picture, Erin was really trying to book tours for us. We went out there to Legend Valley and played our first hookahville. Trickle loved our music and the guys from ekoostik hookah are were good to us. We ended up doing four hookahville's in a row. We missed this past spring's hookahville because we were in Europe.

oakhurst, bluegrassCincy Groove: So how did the idea come about to ride around on the golf carts playing music at hookahville?

Johnny James Qualley: I think thats really how we got noticed out there. The first time we ever rode around on the golf cart playing was at that hookahville. Trickle came by with his crew and 5 or 6 golf carts. He loaded us up and we went around playing at people's campsites until the sun came up.

Cincy Groove: Whats one of the more interesting places Oakhurst has played?

Johnny James Qualley: Back in January and February we were performing on Jam Cruise and one of the places that we repeatedly went to was the Grand Cayman Islands. A couple of our band members just went out to have a couple beers and check out he island. They met the owner of this club and he said the next time we were on the island we should go and play a show at his place. So the next time we went through we showed up at this place, they had fried caunch set out and all of this great food. They had this guy standing out on the curb with a sign. We ended up packing this little tiny bar.

Read the full Interview here

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Jon Justice Band - Artist of the Month July 2008 on

Jon Justice was recently sited as Best of Cincinnati 2008 Blues Singer/Slinger, won the Cincinnati Blues Challenge representing the Queen City at the IBC in Memphis. In 2007 Justice was nominated for three C.E.A's for Best Blues Artist, Best Live Act, and Best Up and Coming Artist and appeared in a Bootsy Collins', ( James Brown, Parliament Funk, George Clinton), video "BENGAL ROCK". Jon was also honored with a C.U.LA.N award by the city of Cincinnati for his artistic contributions to the community in 2008.

Jon Justice is also Artist of the Month for July 2008 on

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Interview with Sam Andrew from Big Brother & The Holding Company

big brother and the holding company Evolving out of the San Francisco rock scene of the 1960s, Big Brother was in the forefront of the psychedelic music movement.

The band was formed by Peter Albin, Sam Andrew, James Gurley and Chuck Jones in San Francisco, in a Victorian mansion/boarding house owned by Peter's uncle at 1090 Page Street in the Haight-Ashbury. That house became the site of Wednesday night jam sessions which were organized by Chet Helms who was the real "Big Brother," naming the band, bringing James Gurley into the fold and later seeing that his old friend Janis Joplin came to sing with them.The first official Big Brother gig was at the Open Theater in Berkeley, January 1966. Within a short time they became the house band for Chet at the Avalon Ballroom and began to develop a loyal following, largely due to the charismatic, pioneering guitar work of James Gurley. The band had what Sam Andrew called a "progressive-regressive hurricane blues style," playing such tunes as Hall of the Mountain King, Coo Coo, That's How Strong My Love Is, and Down On Me. (from

big brother and the holding company

Big Brother & The Holding Company 2005 w/ Sophia Ramos

Cincy Groove: So how did Big Brother first end up getting together?

Sam Andrew: I was walking down the street one day in San Francisco and heard some guitar playing coming out of a window. It turns out it was Peter Albin, who plays bass in Big Brother. It sounded really good so I told him "Lets start a band". So we started playing together every week, sometimes more frequently than that. Over the course of a year we evolved into a band. We were very well known in the San Francisco music scene before Janis came on board. But after she arrived we really started having fun.

Cincy Groove: During 1972-1987 when Big Brother & The Holding Company wasn't together, what were you doing musically?

Sam Andrew: I went back to New York and studied music at a couple really good schools with some great teachers. Studied things like harmony, counter point, and wrote a lot of classical music. Also in that time frame before Big Brother got back together, I went to Seattle and became a father, got married and settled down for a while.

big brother and the holding companyCincy Groove: Who brought up the idea of Big Brother & The Holding Company getting back together in 1987?

Sam Andrew: There was this promoter who called us who asked us to play this 20 year anniversary of the Summer of Love gig he was putting together.

Cincy Groove: How many of the original members are currently touring in the band?

Sam Andrew: There are 3 of us from the original band, and we will usually pick up another guitar player and a female vocalist when we go out on tour. I have about 10 different singers that I can call to come out and play with us depending on what part of the country we are performing in. We will be in the Ohio area performing in August and will have a great singer playing with us. She is Mary Bridget Davies and Ben Nieves is a guitar player from Cleveland, OH. Ben is definitely a better guitar player than me, James or anyone else in Kozmic Blues or Full Tilt.

You can't really compare anyone to Janis because she is unique just like Billie Holiday or Tina Turner. Janis is one of those people you can't copy without being ridiculous. What we end up getting are some really strong singers with a great sense of self.

Read the full interview here

Interview with Willy Morren from Daughters and Sons

willy morren, daughters and sons, cincinnati musicWilly Morren from Daughters and Sons sat down with Cincy Groove to let us know about the origins of Daughters and Sons, the bands plan for a full length LP, and what music influenced him early in his musical career. Daughters and Sons next show is June 28 2008 at the Adjust Your Eyes Festival taking place at the Southgate House.

Cincy Groove: How long has Daughters and Sons been together?

Willy Morren: Well with all the players we have right now its been about 5 months. It took us a year before that to get to the point where we are now. We started as a 3 piece and we weren't happy with that at all. We desperately wanted some keyboards and some horns. We also were thinking about the flute, oboe. If you ever hear the theme song from the tv show Beretta, you'll hear how flute and funk are forever linked in my mind.

Cincy Groove: Were you in any bands before Daughters and Sons?

Willy Morren: I was in a band called Nitty Irvings Family. Nitty was my nickname for the longest time and still is, I can't seem to get rid of it. Then I took a random last name and we went out as Nitty Irvings Family. Basically a 3 piece Hendrix type band. It was something I did to keep me busy. My love has always been with funk. I grew up listening to Sly & The Family Stone, The Commodores, Earth Wind and Fire, thats all I listened to as well as everyone on my block.

So with Daughters and Sons I think we are very unique, some of our songs are hard to classify. Someone described our song "Noah's Arcade" as Prince singing for Creedance Clearwater Revival. Find a bin for that in the record store.

daughters and sons, cincinnati music

Cincy Groove: Does Daughters and Sons have a cd yet?

Willy Morren: We have been handing out a 4 song EP to get people interested. That was just a nightmare to make. That was a sound on sound digital extravaganza (laughing). We had a limited number of tracks with which to work with. But we have had people come up to us and compliment on the recording.

We are actually getting ready to lay down the basic tracks for our first full length cd today. We are hoping to have something ready by Christmas. We still have a lot of writing to do. At least I feel that the set list we have at the moment has a lot of those Noah's Arcade type songs and is kind of light on the get down Saturday night funk type songs. But we do have a song, "Hell Today" thats pretty hardcore groove. As well as a song called "Just Your Song" that definitely is in the style and spirit of Sly Stone. Our set is just a little bit nicer than we want it to be. We want some songs that are a little more gritty. We are focusing on putting together at least an hour of asphalt funk (laughing).

Read the full Interview here

Monday, June 23, 2008

Interview with Beth Cheek from The Fairmount Girls and Lovely Crash

June 23, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

Photos by Scott Preston, Matt Witherspoon

beth wilson, fairmount girls, lovely crash, cincinnati musicA veteran of the Cincinnati music scene, Beth Cheek, is getting ready for The Fairmount Girls cd release this Friday June 27 at Northside Tavern. Beth also let me in on whats going on with Lovely Crash, how she got her start in music and the ever popular Pop Rocks benefit concert which is in the planning stages as we speak.

Cincy Groove: So I understand the Fairmount Girls are having a cd release show this month? is the cd all finished?

Beth: Yes it going to be June 27 at Northside Tavern. The cd is all finished.

Cincy Groove: How long have The Fairmount Girls been together?

Beth: To tell you the truth I'm not really sure. I think I'm like the 16th person to be in the band. There have been some good incarnations and some not so good. This group we have now is really good and we have been getting some positive feedback. The kind of weird thing with this group is that everyone in the Fairmount Girls right now is also in their own bands. When this group first came together we were all very strong players in our own bands, so it took a little while for us to all meld together. I'm really happy with how we all groove together.

The group now is myself (Lovely Crash) Pat Hennessey (Tiger Lillies), Randy Cheek (The Ass Ponys), Melissa Fairmount (The Thirteens, My Wife the Tiger), and Dana Hamblen (Culture Queer). All those bands are very different and very strong. So its something we spent a lot of time on bringing all of those influences together.

fairmount girls, cincinnati music

Fairmount Girls - photo by Matt Witherspoon

Cincy Groove: Do you remember the name of the first band you were ever in?

Beth: Yes, it was Perfect Jewish Couple. It was actually one of the first bands in Cincinnati to use tape loops and synthesizers. This was back in 1981, I was going to the University of Cincinnati at the time. My roommate Shari Lauter was in Perfect Jewish Couple and they recorded a lot at the house. I started doing some recording with her and background vocals and then she asked me is I wanted to start playing with them. The other person in the group was Kelly Hale and I had grown up with him in West Chester.

Read the full Interview here

Photos - Jon Justice Band, 6.22.08, Fraze Pavilion, Kettering, OH

jon justice, blues, cincinnati music

Photos - Jon Justice Band, 6.22.08, Fraze Pavilion, Kettering, OH

Jon Justice Band -

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Interview with Cathy Guthrie and Amy Nelson from Folk Uke

June 18, 2008

Interview by Scott Preston

folk uke, cathy guthrie, amy nelsonFolk Uke is an eclectic acoustic folk duo comprised of Cathy Guthrie and Amy Nelson featuring perfectly melded harmonies and sharp, often biting wit. We were inspired by many of the agreeable greats of the Folk, Country, and Americana genres. Our favorite chords are C, F, and G. So, if you’d like to play along, well, it’s that easy. Of our infamous families, the two of us had been the musical holdouts until we gave into the force and began writing and playing music together. Armed with a ukulele and a guitar, we penned songs such as ‘Shit Makes the Flowers Grow’, ‘Knock Me Up’, and ‘Motherfucker Got Fucked Up’ and we thought, “What a crime it would be to keep these national treasures to ourselves. How can we keep silent when we are the voice of a nation?” You may not hear us on the radio, since our songs have been described as “inappropriate”, “off-color”, “not ready for mainstream” and “NSFW”(Not Safe For Work). Our debut EP, ‘Folk Uke’, is self-titled, as are we. It was produced by Abe Guthrie and ourselves. “Family values” would be the common chord in this unprecedented collection of songs, since we let our Dads take the solos and chime in when they were compelled to do so. It was the least we could do for our executive producers. It made them feel good and that made us feel good; so we took the chance that it would make thousands of people feel good and we printed thousands of copies. - Cathy Guthrie and Amy Nelson

Cincy Groove: So how long have the two of you been together performing?

Amy Nelson: I think about 8 years, we started in 2000.

Cathy Guthrie: It was kind of a joke why we started playing.

Cincy Groove: Who are some of your influences?

Amy Nelson: We are both really big fans of The Jayhawks. We are really big fans of the way they harmonize and their writing.

Cathy Guthrie: We both grew up listening to our dads play. Obviously my dad (Arlo Guthrie) is a big influence. Some others are Pete Seeger, Leadbelly. I grew up listening to all the folkies. Amy was listening to all the country groups.

Amy Nelson: Yeah, I was listening to Roger Miller, Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash.

folk uke, cathy guthrie, amy nelson

Cincy Groove: Are you two working on a new cd?

Amy Nelson: We aren't actively recording a new cd but we are actively writing for a new record. We both have so many other things going on that when we get a chance we try to get together and work on some new stuff. We have random shows here and there. We aren't the most organized (laughing)

Read the full interview here