CMJ Gem: Tallahassee

Young Mary’s Record was privileged to have the opportunity to attend (and participate as a representative of Print Mafia as a panelist!) the CMJ Music Marathon in New York City, earlier in October.  While at CMJ and without serious agenda, we stumbled upon some musicians that we couldn’t stand not to bring back home for your eyes and ears to enjoy.  With that understanding, we present CMJ Gems.  Today’s GEM: Tallahassee.

(photo by Gretchen Gavett.)

If you want something honest, you’ve come to the right place.  In the tiny, dark back room of “whatever that bar was” (my new name for the many places I can’t remember during my NYC trip.) for their early afternoon CMJ slot, Young Mary’s Record was lucky enough to discover the four painfully charismatic dudes that form up-and-coming musical gem, Tallahassee - doing just that - telling it like it is. 

Sometimes funny, sometimes serious, always poignant lyrics backed by an Americana-infused, still quite rock-n-roll to me- backing band?   Not a hard sell there.  Oh - and did I mention they just seem honest?  Like when the truth was cool.  Before musicians had so much hair gel and so many of their checks came from Twitter plugs and product endorsements.   Tallahassee kinda has a little of the same spark that brought the wild success of Alabama Shakes — they believably and dually come from another time and they come from right now.   It’s nostalgia before anything has even happened, without the hokey.

Try the acoustic version of this song, Winter Trees, (the opening tune of their release, Jealous Hands):

An interesting dynamic of folks forming a musical union (The land of misfit toys— the land of misfit boys? ) Tallahassee is comprised of:

-Brian Barthelmes - New England Patriots lineman turned frontman, turns out he can whip tail in front of a crowd with a microphone and brains just as much as brawn..

-Shawn Carney - Bass player/tastemaker - If you like what Little Jack Lawrence puts down on The Raconteurs/ The Greenhornes, you’ll like Carney.  They even share that dark hair, parted down the middle, dark glasses thing.

-Scott Thompson - Lead guitarist and smallest physical stature of the Tallahassee boys - but brings the biggest balls as soon as he starts in on a lick.  I am not one to say things I don’t mean and I’ve seen alot of new music in the last six months: Scott Thompson is my favorite recently discovered guitarist.   He was an unexpected delight.

- Matt Raskopf - Drummer with a personality. Pet Peeve:  Drummers that look as if they’re unable to drum and formulate a sentence .. e.g. blank stare ahead, machine-like drumming, impending diarrhea-like anxious expression.  Raskopf would kick any of those drummers asses.  He was on point and entertaining as all heck to watch.  If ya got it, flaunt it.

One more video below.    Hit it!  To find out more about Tallahassee - (and when they’re breezin’ into a town near you —) Follow them on Facebook: HERE and snag some of that music from their official website: HERE

Like Young Mary’s Record and what we’re doing?  Give us some more e-loving on our Facebook page: HERE for chances to win free tickets, albums, swag, and FREE advice on good shit like this!

Tallahassee - Mt Moriah from Tallahassee on Vimeo.

Last Week’s Show: The RKK Part

If the poster for the show didn’t bring your rear-end there, what will!?

Last week.  Thursday night.  Party time.

Louisville’s Jack Holiday and The Westerners opened.  I missed that.

Second on the agenda was Rainbow K.K.  Unveiling some new material (to me, at least — this is my first time catching them since their Young Mary gig earlier this year) - I was very happy to see progress in them as songwriters and performers.  Never a dull moment with frontman Lando/Stefan/Pistolwhip Meadows - he seems to have really gotten a handle on maintaining his erratic body language with more controlled vocals. 

Now, this wasn’t just another gig - but also the dual release of RKK’s new EP: Cutie Pie (BELOW) and Fairweather Kings’ (first!) self-titled EP.  (second post on FWK to come!)

Photo by Daniel Peach.  Recorded by Greyskull Recordings.  Design by Kelly Mulhall.  In local terms, that is an all-star recipe for an EP based on who’s helpin’ alone. 

A six-song release of the homespun, quirky, going-going-gone tracks we have come to expect from these guys, I’d compare this EP to their first release by looking at the little kitty sticker that came with my purchase of the cd.   Before, RKK was a kitty.  Furry.  Inquisitive.  Our sweet new pet.  With Cutie Pie, our darling babies have found the ball of yarn.  It’s only a matter of time before they’ve strung themselves all over our house - these tunes say to me: it’s okay to be a little messy, a little crazy, and unravel in front of someone. 

To download the EP for FREE: hit RKK’s bandcamp: HERE.  To do what I did and SUPPORT local music, donate to them via bandcamp or buy that physical CD from them at their next gig.  They’re pretty receptive dudes and I bet if you posted on their FB, they’d probably just drop off some tunes in your mailbox or in a hole in a designated tree in a public park.  SEND THE CASH. MAKE THE DROP.

*Favorite Track from Cutie Pie: Teenage Myth

*Most meaningful lyrics to me from Cutie Pie:

"thinking back on you, you had me broken, now i’m fixed

looking back on you, you had me broken, now i’m fixed

but now that you’re gone, but now that you’re gone,

SHE HAS ME FIXED” - from title track, Cutie Pie.

*What I Love: These lyrics remind me of college and college reminds me of fearlessness and being very much alive and being very much alive reminds me that I should be using my life.

*What I Like: Stefan doesn’t have to be anything but himself to pull this off.  No insane vocal wanks, no trying too hard.

*What I Wish: The backing band = solid, talented musicians.  Pack that punch, boys.  You will have women (and men) indie-bopping their heads ‘til the end of time and mimicking Stefan if you will just be the example for them that it is okay to act out, too.