Modern Roots, is perhaps a contradiction in its very name, but a musical ideal that Brian Carroll stands firm to uphold. Drawing inspiration in style and delivery from songwriters of yester-year, while writing from what inspires him in his everyday life, he bridges the gap between folk roots and current day Americana music.
Newsletters are something I have tended to stray away from in my year’s as a performing musician. Sure they are a “necessity” and even if 1 out of 20 people read it, it may well be worth it. Simple fact is, I just never took those collected names from the crumpled sheet after a gig and put them into an electronic intermediary…so bear with me, its my first time.
May is a super exciting month and I just wanted to share a few things with you fine folks.
First and foremost, I have two really great Tuesday gigs this month. I know Tuesdays are tough, but they are going to be a hell of a time.
May 7 – Lizard Lounge, 1667 Mass Ave, Cambridge, MA - Opening for Glenn Yoder and the Western States’ May residency. I will have two special guests sitting in with me as well (my pal and musical backbone Dave Hanlon and old bandmate and good friend Matt Chieffo (www.manaliveband.com)). It will be the first time we are going semi-electric, so it's sure to be a doozy and I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am for this one. http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/377444
May 14 – Johnny D’s, Somerville, MA – Rising: Songs of Hope and Recovery benefit for the Boston Marathon bombings. Greats acts, both friends old and new. The fabulous Randi Millman has been so kind as to set up a really great night for a great cause and I am really happy to be involved in this. http://www.ticketweb.com/t3/sale/SaleEventDetail?dispatch=loadSelectionData&eventId=3546134&pl=jds
And I'll be sitting in on mandolin with my good pal, Jeff Byrd on May 11th (Perks and Corks in Westerly, RI) for any of you folks in the Rhode Island area.
Roots in the Round, with my musical accomplice, Dave Deluca, has been going strong and we are always on the look out for new folks to play! We are also looking into taking the show on the road more often and hitting clubs in Cambridge (Plough and Stars on May 30th), Somerville, and the greater New England area in the coming months. https://www.facebook.com/RootsInTheRound
And finally, some good news that just so happens to not cost you a penny. Since I released my second studio EP “Blood & Water” in January, I have been recording a short EP every month for 2013. Each month I choose a different theme and write, record, and release 3-5 new songs in that time. So far it’s been a challenge, but very rewarding (thanks to Marc Pinansky for giving me the blessing to steal his idea). Head on over to http://briancarroll.bandcamp.com/ and download the lot for free (and grab my last 2 studio EPs while you are over there!).
That’s all for now.
Keep on keepin’ on,
The past 6 months have been quite a trip. Filled with music, friends, travel, dealing with personal demons, and writing….always a lot of writing.
September marked my first year performing in and being part of the planning committee for the New England Americana Festival. It was a whirlwind of weeks leading up the 3 day jamboree of music, no sleep, and excess in every sense of the word. My wife said she doesn’t remember seeing me during this time, which I suppose is partially true (I was at meetings, work, or in the barn making things for the festival most of the time). All in all, we learned a lot, I got to play for some great people, and met a ton of amazing musicians I hope to collaborate with more.
I left the band I had been playing in for about 6 months (Man Alive! www.manaliveband.com) on mandolin and lead guitar to focus on recording my new EP and while it was a tough decision, it was the best for the band moving forward and for me as a musician. I wish them all the best and they have been doing some really awesome things lately. I can’t wait to see what the new year brings for them.
Roots in the Round has had some awesome guests and we have taken the show to another venue as well. Not going to be a normal thing, but its nice to bring the whole idea of the series into the city. A change of scenario and crowd certainly isn’t a bad thing. Its going to be an exciting year for the collaborations and improvisation that this residency has brought so far…keep an eye and ear out for us!
I actually toured the south, heading to Austin to visit my good buddy Greg Loftus. My other pal, Mark Kilianski sat in during my set. And we headed to New Orleans, Memphis and Nashville. I really hope to do this again…the road may be tiresome, but its great.
And finally, after two years, I got back into the studio and am releasing a new EP. The show is on February 16th at one of my favorite venues, Toad in Cambridge, MA. Also playing are my good pals Highway Ghosts, with Dave Hanlon sitting in during my set and I am really happy that this was able to come together. It may be a small venue and not an official “release” given the EP has been up online for about a month now…but the hand pressed hardcopy CDs will be available to purchase for the first time. And it has been quite an undertaking doing it all by hand, but something I hope people will appreciate. The most important part of it is sharing the stage with people I have grown close with over the past couple years and (hopefully) having a ton of friends come out and support.
I guess that’s all for now…hope to see you out at the release show or somewhere down the road.
As this Friday will mark my first actual tour outside of the Northeast, I thought I would take a stab at this whole "blogging to capture the experience" deal. Whether or not I make it all the way through and keep the updates going is to be decided, but for now the thought is there.
As a quick overview...
We fly down to visit and play with my good pal Greg Loftus and his band in Austin,TX and are holding up there for a few days. Taking in all that Austin has to offer from backyard BBQ (where I am sure guitars and stringed things will make an appearance) to taking my picture with a picture of my old man at the SRV statue downtown. I am real excited to catch up with two old friends, share some songs, and throw back a few Lonestars over a long weekend. From Austin we will rent a car and head east, stopping overnight in New Iberia, LA before heading on to New Orleans. At this point I don't have an official New Orleans date, but if the timing calls for it I am sure the old acoustic will come out of its case when we are in town. After we get our fill of cajun spices and voodoo we head north to Memphis to catch up with Elvis at Graceland, play all night at the Java Cabana and take in some more BBQ Memphis style. The final stretch of road will be Memphis to Nashville where I will be playing at the Commodore's writer's night. I hope to meet a lot of great people over there and make some lasting connections in Music City.
Anyway, thats all for now...hope to catch up soon and see some folks out on the road.
Keep on keepin' on