Up for a little bit of genre-mashing this fine Tuesday? Well, we hope some folk-rock alt-country indie-pop motown-tinged bluesy classic rock floats your boat, because that’s the remarkable concoction we have on offer from San Francisco’s very own Vandella, a supremely talented four-piece who stopped by BAMM HQ a while back to treat us to an exclusive rendition of ‘Leaves.’
Like what you hear above? (Helpful hint: if you don’t, you should probably get your ears checked – waxy build-up can really hamper your musical appreciation). Well, if you happen to be in SF tomorrow (the 29th August) you can catch these guys live in Union Square. Perfect summer evening entertainment.
What’s the definition of a lasting musical impact? Sure, number one albums and sold-out world tours are all very well and good, but let’s be honest here … no-one is going to be praising One Direction for their game-changing approach to genre and structure anytime soon (and if you do hear someone doing that, it’s probably best to refer them to a psychiatric ward).
Nope – a true mark of legendary status is when a genre or sound is named after you. Think about it: if you’re the go-to reference to describe a particular method of music-making, then your legacy is set in stone. Forget download sales – you’re in the dictionary, son!
Which brings us to the ‘Scruggs picking style’ – a method of three-fingered banjo playing that was invented and pioneered by bluegrass idol Earl Scruggs. Scruggs sadly passed away yesterday at the age of 88, and to say that American music has lost a father figure would be an understatement. If you’ve listened to virtually anything within the country genre over the past five decades, you’ve heard the influence of Scruggs coming through. It’s all too easy to remember him mainly as the guy behind the Beverley Hillbillies theme … but to do so would be dismissing one of the all-time greats.
Fellow banjo player Steve Martin had this to say:
“When the singer came to the end of a phrase, he filled the theatre with sparkling runs of notes that became a signature for all bluegrass music since,” he said.
“A grand part of American music owes a debt to Earl Scruggs. Few players have changed the way we hear an instrument the way Earl has, putting him in a category with Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong, Chet Atkins, and Jimi Hendrix.”
Tonight’s showcase features singer/songwriter JJ Schultz.
Originally from Wisconsin, he now resides in San Francisco and is the host of the legendary Hotel Utah’s open mic night. He is also recognized as a staple in the San Francisco music scene. JJ’s music can be described in many ways, but to really understand you just have to listen. His music is said to capture what life is like living in rural America, the hardships, the struggle and overcoming the elements.
“Our man demonstrates what Americana should sound like… By showing he is capable of [writing from the point of view of the father who is leaving his family behind… or of the man takes his own life after witnessing the death of his girlfriend], Schultz proves he should be ranked among today’s greatest songwriters.”- MazzMuzikaS.
We have worked with JJ in the past, but this will be JJ’s first performance at BAMM.tv so don’t miss out! To get a preview check out JJ’s Discography on Last Stop Records. Tune into BAMM.tv/live this Thursday 1.6.11 at 8pm PST