Parquet Courts Interview

    Parquet Courts singer and guitarist Andrew Savage once requested prior to an interview that he would not be asked about being “a Texas band”. Apparently the band didn’t exist in Texas and wasn’t even an idea until they all made the move to New York. So now that the record has been set straight, the Brooklyn four-piece released the Tally All Things That You Broke EP, their third release on What’s Your Rupture? last October. It followed their excellent sophomore album Light Up Gold, which earned high critical acclaim.  I was lucky enough to sit down with Andrew before his show with White Fence and CCR Headcleaner at the Great American Music Hall on January 16th.

What brought on these White Fence shows you are co-headlining?

“We’ve known the White Fence guys for a while now, we’ve played some shows with them and hung out with them a few times. We get along, we like the band and you know we’ve actually been trying to play some shows with them on the west coast for a while now, so it’s finally come to fruition.”

Who are some of you favorite artists coming out of the Bay Area right now?

Well yeah, I did ask CCR Headcleaner to play this show, I’ve never seen em before so I’m looking forward to it tonight.

What can we expect from the new album? Any set date?

No set date yet but it will come out in Spring of this year. It’s kind of a different affair of our previous records, but I think all of our records from American Specialties to Light Up Gold to this one are all pretty different. It’s got a different attitude but I don’t think it’ll be alienating to anybody……Parquet Courts fans will get what they want.

Some of you biggest influences right now, band wise?

Right now? Let’s see, lately I’ve been listening to the first Roxy Music record; not that that’s really a new thing but lately I guess I’ve just been listening to it more than normal. I’ve been listening to a lot of Cock Sparrer lately and I’ve been listening to a lot of country music I heard growing up, like a lot of Merle [Haggard], Waylon [Jennings], David Allen Coe. I like honky tonk kinda shit, Jerry Jeff Walker, a lot of Townes Van Zandt. But now that I say all this it’s tough for me to decide if these are influences or just bands I’ve been jamming lately. As I speak I’ve got Dead Moon’s Kicked Out – Kicked In playing.


Check out the full audio interview below as well as a track from Parquet Courts’ latest EP:
Photos by Ryan McDonald

John Hanrahan Quartet & Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme”

The hosts of “Stirrin’ the Soup” had the pleasure of hosting two members from the Chicago-based group known as the John Hanrahan Quartet last week. John (the leader/drummer, now based in Santa Cruz) and his longtime bandmate/tenor saxophonist Brian Kephart, joined us for an exciting discussion about their show at Kuumbwa Jazz. When I heard that this group was going to perform Coltrane’s magnum opus A Love Supreme, I was impressed at the ambition of these guys – I mean,  what a piece to tackle! Here’s the crazy part: these guys meet up transnationally from Chicago to Santa Cruz every few years to play A Love Supreme without rehearsal, straight from the heart and from the top of the head. I went to their show and can say with unmatched certainty that these guys are amazing. Brian absolutely tears it up on the tenor sax and the rest of the band carries the tunes phenomenally. There was something special happening inside the Jazz Center that night; several attendees of the show reported sharing a feeling of spiritual connection to the music throughout the performance. Not quite speechless, but I can only express so much via text so please, find a comfy chair, sit back, relax and check out our discussion about the music we call “Jazz” if you like, and I hope you find it as stimulating as we did. Disclaimer: It’s a long one.


Artist Penny Framstad’s CD Release Party

Santa Cruz born song writer and singer, Penny Framstad, left the beautiful half moon-bay twelve years ago to seek a music career in Los Angeles. By a stroke of luck, she found herself immersed in the soundtrack industry for film and television after the huge success of her song, ‘Even Angels Fall’ featured in the film 10 Things I Hate About You. After her surprising, and move than deserving, success she was able to get many more of her songs used in film and television. Her filmography includes; White Girls, The Office, Scrubs, Dawson’s Creek, Summerland, and many more!

The incredibly talented and kind artist has since returned to Santa Cruz in a very big way! While continuing to write and perform music, Penny is also opening her new vocal training school called, ‘Penny’s Pop Academy.’ Penny has spent many years training young singers and songwriters, and now she hopes to spread her training to the Santa Cruz community.

On Saturday, November 9th, Penny will be hosting a CD release party on a beautiful estate in Pasatiempo. Penny will be performing her old and new songs during the evening concert. Each guest will receive her new CD and a crab dinner, with additional access to an open wine bar. Tickets are currently available! If you are interested in attending this wonderful event, hosted by an extremely talented and kind artist, please contact Penny Framstad at her website,


Hristo Vitchev Interview

In my interview with Bulgarian-raised guitarist Hristo Vitchev, he largely spoke of the ‘Impressionistic” ideas behind his unique style of music. A composer of 6 albums since 2009, his sound is expressed much like a painter expresses what he sees in a painting; a symbiotic playing with his quartet that sonically paints a picture in the listener’s mind, giving the term “Impressionist” to the musical style of the group. The depth of communication with pianist Weber Iago and Hristo paints colorful strokes in the structure of rhythm and harmony throughout the musical landscape.

Anuhea & Justin Young Interview

I had a wonderful chat with Hawaiian reggae music stars Anuhea and Justin Young as they were passing through Northern California, performing at the Reggae in the Hills Festival in Angels Camp. Hear the interview here.

Anuhea & Justin Young have a new song together called Forever Summer; see it below.



Interview with Katherine from Mystic Roots Band

Check out this interview I had with Katherine Ramirez of Mystic Roots Band. They will be performing THIS weekend at Reggae in the Hills Music Festival out in Angels Camp, CA. Their new album Campfire came out tuesday June 4th. This is volume one of a two part album so keep your ears tuned for the second half coming out this september.