Yesterday I went to the best concert I have been to in a rather long time. The Milk Carton Kids are an absolutely amazing group live. Yes, I know I was all gaga about the Great Big Sea concert I went to a couple of weeks ago. Plus, Frank Fairfield the other week was amazing as well.
First, Frank Fairfield is a bluesgrass artist from California. He is a true throwback to earlier music styles of the pre-war era (as in prior to WWI). He takes sheet music from that time and interprets it. He has a very unique style with the banjo and his fiddling is amazing. The man is a veritable fount of information of pre-war south western music. He is also an exceedingly humble musician as well. I first saw him at the Ann Arbor Folk Festival this year. I was utterly amazed by his love of the music. It just exudes from him as he plays away with a hoot here and a holler there. It seems he plays each song with the same abandon and a complete ardor for the music. His emotions comes through in his music so he may seem a bit more rough than other old time musicians. The funny thing he does not consider the music he plays old time music or Appalachian music. He calls it urban music. His reasoning is that all of his music comes from sheet music. All of the sheet music was done in the big cities like New York and the like. I had a quiet self chuckle because I had a vision of an anachronistic Eminem.
His love of music is not only for bluesgrass he is a collector of old vinyl. One of the albums he released was a rerelease of old music from his personal 70rpm collection. There is music on it from all over the globe from Japan to even Africa. He has 2 solo albums of his own that are out a self titled one and Out On The Open West. I was lucky enough to recently get a self released album he did number 120 of 500. He made the CD to look like an old 45 vinyl record. The recording was a bit rough since it was most likely a personal studio (ala his apartment in LA).
I will be talking about the Milk Carton Kids tomorrow. These will be a nice segue into some thoughts on music in the gaming industry.
Here are some other tracks by him before I leave.
Two versions of an old standard Hesitating Blues (AKA Hesitation Blues)
Lastly… out on the street AFTER a performance.. the man loves his music.