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Music, All Shook Down Mountain Winery 2011: Huey Lewis! Grace Potter! Neko Case! Yacht Rock!

Mountain Winery 2011: Huey Lewis! Grace Potter! Neko Case! Yacht Rock!

​Sorry for all the exclamations, but there's a lot of shows here we're going to make our parents take us to. The Mountain Winery recently announced its schedule for 2011, and there are some most notable artists coming. Among them, a…
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Music, Hear This Black Magic Spells

Black Magic Spells

Santana's "Black Magic Woman" long ago became a classic-rock radio staple easily taken for granted. But in the hands of Mexican-American singer Lila Downs, the song's bruja mystique is restored through her bilingual lyrics and inspired, jazzy arrangements. The song…
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Calendar, Night&Day M. Ward: <i>Hold Time</i> (Merge)

M. Ward: Hold Time (Merge)

It’s a tricky thing, dissecting M. Ward’s new album — it can’t possibly stack up against 2006’s Post-War, where every track felt like a classic. But Hold Time does show Ward expanding his production skills; the bustling girl-group sound here…
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Music, Reviewed Morrissey

Morrissey

Morrissey's ninth solo album sounds right at home on his new label, Nashville's Lost Highway. The singer who once famously clutched Oscar Wilde to his chest might seem misplaced among the roster of distinctly American artists like Willie Nelson and…
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Music,

The Worst Lyrics of 2008

And now it's time for the "I love you like a fat kid loves cake" memorial Worst Lyrics of 2008, March Madness–style tournament, this year a terrifying mélange of appalling oral-sex requests, bargain-bin philosophies, grammatical atrocities, and cringe-inducing pillow talk.…
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Music, Reviewed Lucinda Williams

Lucinda Williams

Lucinda Williams can get very personal on her recordings, for better or for worse. Last year's West was a melancholy collection about the loss of her mother. It was also a rather downtrodden buzzkill if you weren't in the mood…
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Music, Hear This The Doe Duet

The Doe Duet

Singer-songwriter and actor John Doe is, of course, a founding member of X, one of the first punk bands to explicitly embrace American roots music. As a solo artist, his sinewy heartland rock combines the worried-man soul of Merle Haggard…
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Calendar, Night&Day The Feast Bay

The Feast Bay

Oakland's annual Art & Soul festival is one of the best street fests in the Bay Area, no contest. What other event pulls in national acts like Ted Leo & the Pharmacists and Lucinda Williams and also features high-grade locals…
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Music, All Shook Down Last Night: Lucinda Williams (yeah, you heard me) at The Paramount

Last Night: Lucinda Williams (yeah, you heard me) at The Paramount

Lucinda Williams @ The Paramount The words “this is a song from the new album” usually have me contemplating a bathroom break at a concert. But at last night’s Lucinda Williams show at the Paramount Theater in Oakland, the…
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Music, Hear This The Pipettes doll up pop in polka dots

The Pipettes doll up pop in polka dots

The ironic title of Lucinda Williams ' 1980 album Happy Woman Blues sums up the contradictions of this mercurial artist. She marries melodies that draw on blues, country, and folk influences to literary lyrics that cut deep to the disconsolate…
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Music, Bouncer

Tender Isn't the Night

Watch yourself, because there are militant Hare Krishnas out there. In fact, when last I checked -- which was the late '90s -- they were in Berkeley, quietly plotting against the police and stockpiling weapons. Laugh if you will, but…
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Music, Reviewed Laura Cantrell

Laura Cantrell

As the proprietress of Radio Thrift Shop on WFMU on the East Coast and an accomplished singer in her own right, Laura Cantrell is a champion of old-time country music -- and she makes it sound lovelier than ever on…
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Music, Reviewed Lucinda Williams

Lucinda Williams

Altcountry singer/songwriter Lucinda Williams often requires listeners to give her work the benefit of the doubt; on her seventh album, World Without Tears, she practically demands it. On this raspy outing, Williams masks her trademark high-quality songsmithing behind a veil…
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Music, Reviewed Kathleen Edwards

Kathleen Edwards

It's pretty easy to nail Kathleen Edwards as "the next Lucinda Williams," since the frequent comparison is hardly unfair. On the opening tracks of Edwards' debut album, Failer, the Canadian roots-rocker strains to mimic Williams' raspy vocal style, while the…
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Music, Lucinda Williams

Lucinda Williams

It's remarkable to hear so powerful and potent an artist as Lucinda Williams sounding as victimized and forlorn as she does on her sixth album. Essence is a perplexing record, partly because of its foray into the sleek, high-tech musical…
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Music,

Hip Pocket

You're just faking! Elvis is here; we know it. Tell us where he is! Show us Elvis!" That quote comes from an early '80s drawing by Raymond Pettibon, currently hanging in the Austin Museum of Art. It's a small…
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Music,

1998: The Year in Lists

Brian Alcorn's Top 10 Songs Bay Area Radio Missed the Boat On Any music fan can name dozens of wonderful, obscure songs that never made it on the radio, but here are 10 wonderful mainstream singles that got spins in…
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Music,

Reviews

Lucinda Williams (Koch International) Lucinda Williams Car Wheels on a Gravel Road (Mercury) There's a 10-year gap between Lucinda Williams' self-titled third record and her fifth, Car Wheels on a Gravel Road. Both are brilliant, although the difference between the…
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Music,

Reviews

Dirty Three Ocean Songs (Touch and Go) What with all the recent fascination about sinking ships -- Titanic's themes of love on the high seas, kindly souls who drown beautifully, and all that business -- it's worth noting that Dirty…
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