Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Music Maker Relief Foundation publicity photos

 Precious Bryant with Lucas Duffy
 MMRF founders Tim and Denise Duffy
 Mother Pauline and Elder James Goins

 Algia Mae Hinton
 Dr. G. B. Burt
 Essie Mae Brooks
Ironing Board Sam

Music Maker Relief Foundation Receives National Endowment for the Arts Grant

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa announced that Music Maker Relief Foundation received an NEA Art Works grant to support their upcoming museum exhibit We Are The Music Makers.

The exhibit will feature photo and audio documentation of Southern Roots musicians active in the past 20 years, all photographed and recorded by Tim Duffy in his quest to preserve Southern traditional music by partnering with the artists who make it. The multi-media materials will highlight musicians performing music passed down by families and community members throughout the centuries. The exhibit seeks to shine a light on these artists who are frequently hidden by poverty and geography, leading some to believe the traditional music they perform has “died out.”

The Art Works grant from the NEA will assist Music Maker in the creation of the exhibit and the events surrounding the official launch of We Are the Music Makers at the ArtsCenter in Carrboro, NC on October 3rd. Associated with the exhibit’s official debut, a panel discussion will be held featuring Roots musicians, moderated by folklorist William Ferris, Ph.D., and open to the public. A Blues Revue performance will follow the afternoon panel discussion in the evening on October 3rd.

NEA Acting Chairman Shigekawa said, "The NEA is pleased to announce that Music Maker Relief Foundation is recommended for an NEA Art Works grant. These NEA-supported projects will not only have a positive impact on local economies, but will also provide opportunities for people of all ages to participate in the arts, help our communities to become more vibrant, and support our nation's artists as they contribute to our cultural landscape."

“We Are The Music Makers is the culmination of twenty years of work photographing and recording the Roots musicians of the American South. Music Maker Relief Foundation began in 1994 to assist musicians living in poverty while sharing their music with the world. Since then, I have worked with so many amazing musicians, and this exhibit allows us to share their stories, images and music with new audiences. We are so grateful to the NEA and all our supporters for helping us make this happen,” said Tim Duffy, Music Maker’s founder.

This project is also made possible in part by support from the North Carolina Humanities Council and the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation. The exhibit officially launches on October 3rd and will be up for one month at the ArtsCenter in Carrboro, NC. After that We Are the Music Makers will travel to various venues through the country for the next five to seven years.

About Music Maker Relief Foundation

Music Maker Relief Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit, preserves and promotes the musical traditions of the American South. Since 1994 we have partnered with traditional artists over 55 years old who survive on a yearly income of less than $18,000, sustaining their day-to-day needs while building their careers. Through Music Maker, our rich heritage of folk music will not be lost with the passing of time.

About NEA Art Works Grants

Art Works grants support the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and enhancement of the livability of communities through the arts.  The NEA received 1,515 eligible applications under the Art Works category, requesting more than $76 million in funding. Of those applications, 886 are recommended for grants for a total of $25.8 million.

Thursday, April 17, 2014



Producer Colin Linden has worked on sessions with Lucinda Williams, Lindi Ortega, T Bone Burnett, Keb Mo, and Diana Krall and backed Bob Dylan on stage, but he's never seen anyone quite like Eden Brent. The acclaimed performer and producer exclaims, "Working with Eden is sort of like going to the carnival because you never know exactly what you're going to get, but you're going to have a really good time. I always feel with Eden that she's giving the real genuine article; she's herself at all times." As a result, there was never a moment in the studio when the tape wasn't rolling. "I think Eden is one of the real greats," he adds.

Describing his recording approach, Linden observes, "She's such a spontaneous artist and such a spontaneous person that for me, the really important thing is getting her when the moment strikes her. The records have a tremendous amount of drama just built into the circumstances but there's also a sense of candid performance just capturing something as it happens, as opposed to contriving a circumstance like a portrait. It's more like a candid shot."

Following their field trip to New Orleans to record her 2010 album 'Ain't Got No Troubles,' the three-time Blues Music Award winner Brent decided to mix in some Nashville flavor. "I trust Colin implicitly," she says, continuing, "I sort of wanted for this project to involve some folk or country instrumentation, and just see how maybe that could make my sound a little different and make me grow a little."

Linden brought in players with whom he's long had a rapport and who could hang with Eden, both musically and socially, giving the band instant chemistry with her. He attests, "She's such a cool person to hang out with. I wanted to just be able to bring other people who she would enjoy hanging out with to the party and I think that you hear that in the music. Part of what gives us the feeling that I think is important on the record is that we're all in pretty close physical proximity -- just a few feet away from one another.  If the arrangement changes, you can telegraph the other players by just looking over at them. There’s kind of a freedom to be spontaneous."

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


Dom Flemons – founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops and American Songster – will release his third solo album 'Prospect Hill' on July 22 on Music Maker Relief Foundation. 'Prospect Hill' finds Flemons digging deeply into ragtime, Piedmont blues, spirituals, southern folk music, string band music, jug band music, fife and drum music, and ballads idioms with showmanship and humor, reinterpreting the music to suite 21st century audiences.

Following a series of tour dates with a new generation of American roots musicians like Pokey LaFarge, Flemons will perform April 18 as part of the Brooklyn Folk Festival at the Bell House. He performed and spoke on WNYC Soundcheck in March to talk about his Oxford American essay on Gus Cannon.

Flemons has mastered a variety of instruments such as banjo, guitar, harmonica, fife, bones, bass drum, snare drum and quills. After a stint in New York City, Flemons has returned to his musical home of North Carolina.

Solo and with the Carolina Chocolate Drops, Flemons has played live for over one million people within the past three years. As part of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, which he co-founded with Rhiannon Giddens and Justin Robinson in 2005, he has played at a variety of festivals Newport Folk Festival, Bonnaroo, and the Grand Ole Opry.

Of his set at Sydney Festival, The Daily Telegraph (Australia) said this year, "Dom Flemons knocks 'em dead… a showstopper."

The New York Times called the Carolina Chocolate Drops "an end-to-end display of excellence," continuing, "They dip into styles of southern black music from the 1920s and ’30s—string- band music, jug-band music, fife and drum, early jazz—and beam their curiosity outward. They make short work of their instructive mission and spend their energy on things that require it: flatfoot dancing, jug playing, shouting."

Rolling Stone observed, "The Carolina Chocolate Drops are...revisiting, with a joyful vengeance, black string-band and jug-band music of the Twenties and Thirties—the dirt-floor dance electricity of the Mississippi Sheiks and Cannon’s Jug Stompers."

The Guardian said, "An appealing grab-bag of antique country, blues, jug band hits and gospel hollers, all given an agreeably downhome production. The Carolina Chocolate Drops are still the most electrifying acoustic act around."

'Dom Flemons, American Songster, Presents: Prospect Hill' Track List

1. Til' the Seas Run Dry
2. Polly Put the Kettle On
3. But They Got it Fixed Right On
4. Have I Stayed Away Too Long?
5. Georgia Drumbeat
6. I Can't Do it Anymore
7. Sonoran Church Two-Step
8. Too Long I've Been Gone
9. Marching Up to Prospect Hill
10. It's a Good Thing
11. Grotto Beat
12. Hot Chicken
13. San Francisco Baby
14. My Money Never Runs Out

Monday, April 14, 2014

Twain embeddable album stream

Performing at Rockwood Music Hall, stage 3, April 21:

Thursday, April 10, 2014


The Nick Moss Band's 'Time Ain't Free' has earned career-best raves for the Chicago band, which recently headlined to a wildly enthusiastic crowd at Mercury Lounge in NYC. 'Time Ain't Free' also rocketed to #4 on the Living Blues radio chart, #17 on the Relix radio chart, and #2 on the Roots Music Report Blues chart. Here's what we're reading:

"Check out some excellent players of a younger generation who look set to carry on in the exploratory spirit of the Allmans for decades to come. [Moss] sings with a personable twang, and issue commanding solos that are every bit the equal of anything the Allmans' great Warren Haynes can summon."
- Mac Randall, NY Observer, March 28, 2014

"Moss' class shines through [as he] reaches deeper into soul, funk, and rock ‘n’ roll.'
- Lars Brandle,, September 26, 2013

"Nothing less than a powerful gumbo of Chicago soul, funk, blues, jam and rock and roll."
- Damian Fanelli, Guitar World, February 6, 2014

- Greg Vandy, KEXP, November 20, 2013

"Top tier."
- Tavis Smiley, March 1, 2014, PRI

"A high-water mark for the Chicago-based band... the album's 14 tracks will have you tapping your feet along and dropping your jaw at Moss's many blistering guitar solos."
- Scott Bernstein, Jambase, March 5, 2014

"Scorching blues rock guitar hero."
- Michael O'Keefe, NY Daily News, March 15, 2014

"A giant talent."
- Dan Ackroyd, Elwood's Bluesmobile, March 22, 2014

"Southern-fried rock…a vintage, boogie-filled slice of rock & roll featuring Moss' scintillating guitar playing."
- Kevin Korber, Elmore, February 24, 2014

- George Vargas, UT San Diego, November 7, 2013

- Hal Horowitz, Creative Loafing, December 4, 2013

"A defiant R&B swagger that signals a stylistic vision for the future."
- Mark Uricheck, Living Blues, April, 2014

Nick Moss Band Tour Dates

April 10                Bradenton, FL                   Ace’s
April 11                Ft. Meyers, FL          Buckingham Blues Bar
April 12                West Palm Beach, FL             BB King’s Blues Club
May 2-3         St. Louis, MO                   Private Event
May 17          Excelsior Springs, MO   Wabash BBQ
May 28          Phoenix, AZ                     Rhythm Room
May 30          Ventura, CA                     Yolie’s
May 31          Arcadia, CA                     Arcadia Blues Club
June 5                  San Francisco, CA               Biscuits & Blues
June 7                  Point Arena, CA         Arena Theater
June 11         Birkenfeld, OR          The Birk
June 12         Portland, OR                    Duff’s Garage
June 13         Seattle, WA                     Highway 99 Blues Club
June 14         Yakima, WA                      Yakima Blues Festival
June 24         Highland, IN                    Beer Geek’s
August 17               Thornton, NH                    White Mountain Boogie N’ Blues Festival
September 5             Brighton, MI                    Smokin’ Jazz & Blues Festival