Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Bryan Ferry Croons Dylan

Style-driver Bryan Ferry has just put out a new CD--this time covering the songs of Bob Dylan.

It's called Dylanesque, and it's worth checking out.

For more click

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Did You Work With Loudon Wainwright III In RI?

In a fab article in the latest No Depression magazine, it's noted that Louden Wainwright III (coming to the Narrows later this year; visit "worked for a time in a Rhode Island boatyard..." in the late 1960s.

No other details, but perhaps You know a bit more, or maybe even worked with him!

Leave a message if you have info.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

See Earlier Version of Songs Covered by Sarah Borges

One of your humble blogger's favorite tracks on the new Sarah Borges' CD is "Stop and Think It Over," written by a fairly obscure garage rocker named Greg Cartwright.

Turns out he's not so terribly obscure. He produced a new CD for Mary Weiss, former lead singer of the '60s girl group "The Shangri-Las" (one of their big hits was "Walking in the Sand").

On that CD is "Stop and Think It Over."

Mary Weiss did it on Conan O'Brien and you can see her performance here.

Also, Sarah covers "False Eyelashes" which you can see Dolly Parton in the 1960s sing right here.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Aztec Two-Step: Feel Good Music

Aztec Two-Step's Rex Fowler provides the visual as the duo sings about "velvet Elvis."

A satisfied patron was heard saying after the concert that it was a night of "feel good music."

A great description of the show, as Aztec Two-Step had the house humming Saturday night with their poppy folk approach that was serious, but didn't take itself too seriously.

It was a nice send-off for the Narrows, as it takes a few weeks off (hopefully to get the elevator project going). Next show is July 12. Learn more at
"Backstage at the Narrows," however, is not expecting to take a hiatus. Please continue checking this space for news, reviews and more.

Walter Wolfman Howls At The Narrows

Walter Wolfman Washington and the Roadmasters made a triumphant return to the Narrows Friday night, bringing the soulful and jazzy sounds of New Orleans.

The Wolf, although an understated guitar hero, nonetheless unleased some tasty riffs, as did his horn section (trumpet and sax), drummer and bass player.

The Wolf is a pretty fair vocalist, too. He reminds your humble blogger of an understated (like his guitar playing) Al Green.
The show was an official "lock," as declared by your humble blogger, who was nearly moved to tears when a member of the audience came up to him and noted that he had picked another great one.

A "lock" is a show from a lesser known artist that your humble blogger guarantees as excellent, throwing the full force of his tremendous influence and insight so people will buy tickets.

Keep an eye on this space for the next "lock."

Friday, June 22, 2007

Mekons, Bill Morrisey, Peter Case and Others Coming

Not yet posted:

October 4
The Mekons

October 13

October 19

October 20
Bill Morrissey &
Peter Case

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Narrows Prez Talks Importance of Arts to Commerce

Narrows president Patrick Norton spoke to a large chamber of commerce audience at the Venus de Milo in Swansea Thursday night and urged them to recognize the importance of the arts to the economy.

Narrows patrons, for example, usually come from outside the immediate area, and spend dollars on food, gas and lodging, he pointed out.

His message was particularly relevant since the Fall River area routinely gets left behind during economic recoveries and feels the hurt the worst during recessions. And despite plenty of arts opportunities being available through the Narrows Center for the Arts and other organizations, he noted that he still hears "there's nothing to do in Fall River." Not true.

Patrick made his remarks during ceremonies in which he was awarded a John S. Brayton, Jr. Memorial Community Service Award for his volunteer service to the community. The award is made annually by the Fall River Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

As noted in the event's program booklet, Patrick was born and raised in Fall River. After high school he was a performing musician, gigging with various bands across New England. He later graduated from UMASS Dartmouth.
Patrick and Maggie Norton: The First Couple of the Arts on the SouthCoast
He's been a volunteer at the Narrows for a decade, and previously served as vice president. He developed the Narrows' concert schedule and co-founded what's now known as the Narrows Festival of the Arts. He's served the past couple years as Narrows president, overseeing all aspects of the operation, from events to whether the plumbing works. He is also a youth soccer coach, serves on the board of directors of People, Inc. and was recently elected vice president of the newly formed Arts United.
His paying gig is as district representative for Congressman Jim McGovern. He's married to Narrows volunteer Maggie and they have two kids (who also volunteer at the Narrows): Ben, who's ten years old and at one time sported a Mohawk haircut; and seven year old Owen, who digs bands with drummers.

Congrats to Patrick and the Norton family, including his proud dad, former Senator Thomas Norton, who looked spiffy in his tux.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Ruthie Foster Reviewed

Your humble blogger is once again writing for based down there in the Lone Star State.

His latest offering is a review of Narrows veteran Ruthie Foster's latest CD. Read it here.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

No Depression Magazine Should Be Called "Narrows Magazine"

The new No Depression magazine might be called the "Narrows Magazine" as it has sizable features on Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles and Eilen Jewell, both Narrows mainstays.

No Depression writer Lloyd Sachs calls our adopted daughter Sarah "a dark-haired beauty"--hey, watch it fella, stick to the music and keep your eyes off the prize! "What Borges is," he writes, " a bright, unaffected fully charged artist with a knack for casting upbeat light even on the 'sad and pissed off' songs she says she is most comfortable doing."

Scott Brodeur writes about our other adopted daughter, Eilen Jewell--"Whether they're her own compositions, or tunes from the likes of Bob Dylan...Eric Andersen...or Charlie Rich, Jewell's achingly charming voice convinces you these characters exist, and that she has tossed back at least a few whiskeys with them."

There's also an article about a guy no stranger to the Narrows--he's played at our beloved mill space as Chip Taylor's guitarist--John Platania. John, by the way, was Van Morrison's guy before he worked for Chip--that's John's playing on "Into the Mystic," "Brown Eyed Girl" and "Moondance." John's got a solo CD out.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

New York Doll

If your cable system has the Sundance Channel on-demand, you might want to check out the movie "New York Doll," about the post-rock star life of New York Dolls' bassist Arthur "Killer" Kane.

Patrick Norton, Narrows' president, turned your humble blogger on to this offering, and I wanted to share this info with you.

Watched it Sunday afternoon. Very cool!

For an in-depth write-up on the film, click here.

New New Riders' CD Getting Noticed

Thought the New Riders of the Purple Stage was all about the past?

Hold on there, bucko, the New Riders have a new CD--and it just got noticed by one of the "bibles" of the radio industry, Friday Morning Quarterback.

Check this out. It's for the Triple A format (in this area, WBOS in Boston), which is more mainstream than your Americana format (I guess WUMB in Boston is Americana; WMVY on Martha's Vineyard is perhaps one too.)

The New Riders are coming to the Narrows very soon. Visit for more.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Led Zep Bassist Jams with Narrows Alums

Narrows alums Uncle Earl jammed with Led Zepplin bassist John Paul Jones at the Bonnaroo festival the other day.

See the photo and story here.

Sarah Borges Rocks This Town....Oh Yeah!

Assuring the crowd, which included her mom, dad and grandma, that she was wearing shorts under her go-go minidress, Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles kicked total ass at the Narrows Friday night. That's the only way to describe it!

Sarah and bassist Binky get down on the stage, nearly rockin' through the boards! Love those tattoos!

It was the hometown record release party of her first release on a major label, Sugarhill Records, and she and the boys were certainly up to the task of bringing the crowd to its feet and dancing in the aisles. "Diamonds in the Dark" is a strong release, and is already garnering attention at radio stations and newspapers across the land.
Sarah and the crew, by the way, are an official Narrows discovery. She noted that she opened for Grace Potter and the Nocturnals a couple years back, and she had dreamed of filling the place herself. She pretty much did that Friday night. Your humble blogger remembers that show a couple years back, thinking that Sarah and her guys gave Grace a run for her money. Sarah was fairly unknown at that point. Your humble blogger, though, thought that her first CD "Silver City," was one of the best records he had heard in a long while.
Jimmy Ryan and his very hot band Hayride, opened the night with Sarah's guitar guy, Mike Castellana, filling in on guitar and Sarah, herself, getting in on the fun. Kudos to Jimmy for a solid, rocking opening.

Guitar whiz Mike Castellana (of the Broken Singles) sits in with Jimmy Ryan for his entire set while Sarah contributes vocals to a tune.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Sarah Borges Getting the Press

Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles do their hometown record release party at the Narrows Friday night.

And in anticipating the show she's gettin' some good press.

Here's something in The Patriot Ledger.

And how about this in the Providence Journal.

Tickets are still available. See ya Friday night?

Addendum: Check out this story in the Boston Herald.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Sarah Borges Gets Thumbs Up on USA Today Blog

"Pop Candy," a blog for USA Today has praised "Diamonds in the Dark," Sarah Borges and the Broken Singles' new CD (being released Tuesday).

Read more here.

See Sarah and the guys this Friday at the Narrows.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Monkee Throws Banana Peel At Rolling Stone Head

Narrows alum, and ex-Monkee, Peter Tork says the head of Rolling Stone magazine is keeping The Monkees out of the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.

Read more here.

Little Steven Saving Rock 'n' Roll

Tonight Little Steven Van Zandt wraps up his role on The Sopranos, but he continues his roles as Bruce Springsteen's guitarslinger, as host of radio's "Little Steven's Underground Garage," one of the hippest radio shows ever, and as a columnist for Billboard Magazine.

The show is carried Sunday mornings on 94.1 WHJY from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. (Disclosure: WHJY is owned by Clear Channel, which your humble blogger works for part-time.) Last I checked, all of the shows are carried as podcasts on the website as well, plus there's a whole underground garage channel on one of the satellite services.

Anyway, has an interview with Little Steven, which touches on the fact that rock 'n' roll ain't happen' like it use to. You might have to scroll down a bit to read the interview if you're checking this out after Sunday.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Meet Walter Wolfman Washington

New Orleans blues/soul guitarist Walter Wolfman Washington is playing the Narrows on Friday, June 22.

Your humble blogger has declared this show a "lock"--meaning that even if you've never heard of The Wolf you will enjoy this show.

But perhaps you need more info.

Well, I found an interview with him done last year. Check it out here.

Fan Fotos From Fairport Convention

A nice person emailed your humble blogger with some additional shots from the Fairport Convention (acoustic) show.

See 'em right here.

Thanks for sharing!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Ronnie Earl Takes It To The People

World-renowned Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters brought their energetic take on blues and soul to the Narrows Friday night.

Ronnie spent a lot of the time in the aisles, giving personal solos to members of the audience.

Is that a B3 organ there?

B52s To Release New Album

The folks from Athen, GA who seemed to have taken Yoko Ono's sound and made it commercial--the B52s--are slated to release their first album in a good number of years.

More details here.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Sunday, June 03, 2007

And Then There Were 2

Fairport Convention (acoustic), knocked down from 3 to 2 due to a last minute illness, kept the folks smiling at the Narrows on Saturday night.

Introduced as the "Rock Gods from Oxfordshire, Fairport Convention," founding member Simon Nichol, on the electric, and fiddler Ric Sanders bounded upon the stage enthusiastically, although they said they were worried about performing as a twosome (Chris Leslie (fiddle and mandolin) was sick back at the hotel.)

A large and appreciative crowd responded to the change without missing a beat, roaring with laughter at (usually) Simon's comments such as "if you don't recognize this song, maybe we should be back at the hotel too."

Put Our Patron Saint Into the Hall of Fame!

There's a petition out in cyberspace to put Narrows' patron saint Gram Parsons into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

Your humble blogger just signed it.

To see the petition, click here.

Green Day's "Working Class Hero" Video On-Line

Check out Green Day's version of John Lennon's "Working Class Hero" by clicking here.

Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh Show Cancelled

This coming Saturday's concert with Danu's Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh has been cancelled.

The word your blogger got is that she's having throat issues.

No word if it will be rescheduled.
Your humble blogger has been listening to her CD. It's a good 'un!

Friday, June 01, 2007

Eilen Jewell Returns

Eilen Jewell and her crack band returned to the Narrows Friday night with a new CD and a new set of songs. Officially the CD is not getting released for another month, but it was nonetheless for sale.

Narrows fave Ryan Fitzsimmons, backed by a band, opened the evening with an energetic set.
Bad news for all those with a crush on Ryan: he announced that he's engaged!