George Winston Releases Second Vince Guaraldi Tribute Album, Tours a Bunch of Venues You Have Never Been To and Will Never Return To After His Show

George Winston Releases Second Vince Guaraldi Tribute Album, Tours a Bunch of Venues You Have Never Been To and Will Never Return To After His Show

George Winston occupies a strange territory of the cultural landscape. Somehow, early in his career, he came to be categorized alongside some of the shittiest music in the world: “easy listening.” A few dull landscape-photography album covers later, Winston had unintentionally cemented his status as the soundtrack to yoga classes nationwide. It is understandable that one would misclassify Winston as such (assuming the “one” in question has a subscription to Harper’s and eight or more matching square plates). His music can be soft, impressionistic, and subtle, creating a depth of imagery not through a raw sonic assault, but through a gradual and understated totality of sound, much like the champion of the 18th-century easy listening scene, Antonio Vivaldi.

In truth, Winston is a complex, fascinating piano virtuoso and is alive right now. His well-documented web of influences spans from Fats Waller to The Doors to Appalachian fiddle music. He is also an incredible slack-key guitarist and blues harmonica player, talents which are demonstrated on only one of his 18 albums, Remembrance: A Memorial Benefit. And I defy any New-York-Times-Art-and-Leisure-section-trusting Starbucks drinker to listen to “Miles City Train” during his or her next scented bath and call it “easy”.

I think that George Winston is limited by the audience that supports him. When I saw Winston perform at the Abrons Arts Center last November, he heavily prefaced one piece, warning the audience that the ending would be a little experimental. As the song came to an end, he muted the piano and began slamming on the keys, playing them alone as a percussion instrument. He finished the piece and immediately apologized.

Winston’s renditions of jazz pianist Vince Guaraldi’s lively melodies on Love Will Come: The Music of Vince Guaraldi Volume 2 are hardly relaxation fodder, with the possible exception of “Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown.” On February 2, Winston released this follow-up to his 1996 tribute to Guaraldi, Linus and Lucy: The Music of Vince Guaraldi, in a 16-song regular edition and a 19-song deluxe edition. Enterprising gentlemen and ladies may stream the first track for free, courtesy of Play it at your next Lamaze class.

Love Will Come: The Music of Vince Guaraldi Volume 2 tracklist:

01. Time For Love
02. It Was a Short Summer, Charlie Brown
03. Macedonia/Little David
04. Woodstock
05. Fenwyck’s Farfel/Calling Dr. Funk
06. Room at the Bottom
07. Air Music
08. Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown
09. You’re Elected, Charlie Brown/Little Birdie
10. Brasilia
11. Jambo’s (Casaba)
12. Pebble Beach/Dolores Park
13. Love Will Come/Slow Dance
14. Rain, Rain Go Away
15. Nobody Else
16. Love Will Come 2
17. Dilemma *
18. Seeds For Thought/Ballad For Oscar *
19. Christmas Time Is Here *

* Deluxe Edition only

George Winston tourdates:

02.23.10 - Decatur, GA - Presser Hall at Agnes Scott College
03.02.10 - West Hartford, CT - Hoffman Auditorium at Saint Joseph College
03.04.10 - Fairfield, CT - FTC Stage One
03.06.10 - Old Saybrook, CT - Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center
03.08.10 - Newburyport, MA - Firehouse Center for the Arts
03.09.10 - Newburyport, MA - Firehouse Center for the Arts
03.12.10 - Chatham, NJ - The Sanctuary Concerts
03.14.10 - Glen Allen, VA - The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen
03.21.10 - Easton, MD - Avalon Theatre
03.30.10 - Arlington Heights, IL - Metropolis Performing Arts Centre
03.31.10 - Arlington Heights, IL - Metropolis Performing Arts Centre
04.07.10 - Phoenixville, PA - Colonial Theatre
04.09.10 - North Bethesda, MD - The Music Center at Strathmore
04.12.10 - Tryon, NC - Tryon Fine Arts Center
04.15.10 - Greenville, SC - Peace Center for the Performing Arts
04.22.10 - Berea, KY - Phelps Stokes Auditorium

• George Winston:

Sleepy Sun Tour, Plan to Follow the Earth’s Rotation But Will Probably Get Lazy

Santa Cruz psych jammers Sleepy Sun embark on a tour of the US starting February 26, primarily sticking close to the West Coast. They’ve got a debut album titled Embrace (TMT Review) out now on ATP. I’d say more, but I’m getting sleepy.

02.26.10 - Oakland, CA - The New Parish
03.09.10 - Santa Cruz, CA - Catalyst Atrium
03.12.10 - Los Angeles, CA - Echo
03.13.10 - Bar Pink - San Diego, CA
03.14.10 - Palm Springs, CA - J.Dee’s Landing
03.17.10 - Austin, TX - Emo’s Annex (SXSW)
03.18.10 - Austin, TX - Beauty Bar (SXSW)
03.20.10 - Austin, TX - Peckerheads (SXSW)
03.21.10 - Dallas, TX - Double Wide (Bro Fest)
03.23.10 - Denver, CO - Hi Dive Club
03.24.10 - Santa Fe, NM - Corazon
03.25.10 - Flagstaff, AZ - Mia’s Lounge
03.26.10 - Las Vegas, NV - Bunkhouse Saloon
03.27.10 - Visalia, CA - The Cellar Door

• Sleepy Sun:
• ATP Recordings:

Avett Brothers Announce Tour, Play Bonnaroo, Don’t Shave

Grandma had an old saying: “Snatch not from an Avett’s hand, for an Avett does not rest.” At the time, I had no clue what that meant. Nowadays, I can only assume my sweet ol’ grandmother was talking about The Avett Brothers. Those rootsy North Carolinians put out a record pretty much every year of the past decade, along with being seemingly constantly on tour. Case in point: The Avett Brothers are going on tour again, warming the cold hearts of the frozen Midwest. In somewhat warmer news, they’re also going to be playing Bonnaroo, where only the beers are cold, bro.

Cold dates:

02.24.10 - Athens, OH - Ohio University Athens
02.26.10 - Ithaca, NY - State Theatre
02.27.10 - Cleveland, OH - House of Blues
02.28.10 - Indianapolis, IN - Egyptian room @ Murat Centre
03.02.10 - Columbia, MO - Missouri Theatre
03.03.10 - Midwest City, OK - Rose State PAC
03.05.10 - Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue
03.06.10 - Milwaukee, WI - Riverside Theatre
03.07.10 - Chicago, IL - House of Blues
03.09.10 - Ann Arbor, MI - Michigan Theater

• The Avett Brothers:

Wal-Mart, Now with Live Nation Ticketing Outlets!

Personally, I blame online ticketing for missing out on Lady Gaga’s Monster Ball tour. I despise waiting for the site to load, nervously refreshing the page after I’ve already entered my credit card information, and panicking as the phone rings right when the site says I have five minutes to finalize my order.

A new partnership between TMT favorites Live Nation Entertainment and Wal-Mart gives you another option. Live Nation executive chairman Irving Azoff announced at the recent NBA Technology Summit in Dallas that ticketing outlets will open in select Wal-Mart stores across the US (about 500, in major cities). Rather than go online, shoppers will be able to head to Wal-Mart’s entertainment section for tickets to local concerts, sporting events, and other Ticketmaster offerings.

$9.99 DVDs and Nickelback tickets in one shopping trip? Given the similar deal between Live Nation and Blockbuster, settled late last year, this might not seem that special. But does Blockbuster have in-store fast food?

Classic 1980 Punk Film Blank Generation, Starring Richard Hell, Coming to DVD

MVD Visual has announced plans to reissue the classic 1980 punk flick Blank Generation. In fact, it’s coming out next Tuesday, February 23. What better way to describe the film than with a nice quote from the man himself, Richard Hell?

This is a priceless package. The real burnt-out New York in January and February 1978, the Voidoids live at CBGB, Ed Lachman’s cinematography, Elliot Goldenthal’s sound track, Carole Bouquet’s face, my lithe figure, Andy Warhol to break your heart, Luc Sante demonically extracting the ugly truths from me re: the horror of it all (bonus feature which is better than the movie itself)… unique. Spring for it.

Blank Generation tells the classic punk rock story of boy likes girl, girl likes boy, but girl still loves ex. Throw in some classic Voidoids footage, some shots of a dirty NYC, give Andy Warhol a role, and there ya go: Punk Rock!

• MVD Visual:
• Richard Hell:

Shout Out Louds Are Back! Digital EP Up for Sale Now, New Full-Length Up for Pre-Order… All of Which Screams (Shouts) Upcoming Spring Tour

A nation’s pop music is a lot like a school cafeteria. In Sweden, Jens Lekman and The Tough Alliance/Sincerely Yours dreamy Balearic pop sets sit at different tables (pretty close to each other; they trade lunches sometimes), and the weird electronic set (à la The Knife/Fever Ray) sits with one another. There’s a hierarchy, of course, and the more albums you release, the better your seat tends to look from the outside. With so much hype currently swirling around bands like jj, Air France, and El Perro del Mar, it’s easy to forget about Stockholm-based Shout Out Louds, whose last (sophomore) album, Our Ill Wills (TMT Review), came out in 2007.

Yet they don’t plan to disappear in the lunchroom din. (End metaphor.) Last October, TMT reported that Shout Out Louds are soon to be releasing their third full-length, Work. The album, produced by Phil Ek (of The Shins, Fleet Foxes fame), is slated for release February 23 from Merge Records. It’s available for pre-order now, but the winter is long and lonely, so Shout Out Louds have a couple offerings in the meantime.

Work’s first single, “Fall Hard,” is up for digital download from Merge, with bonus tracks “Fall Hard Pt. 2” and “Can’t Explain.” You can watch the video for this bouncy, bittersweet single (the chorus is “If you fall hard/ I fall harder” …need I say more?) on their website, along with the video for “Walls.” Even better, “Walls” is available as a free mp3 download. Tack!

Naturally, these guys have also added more tourdates for the spring since our original story ran in December. Here is the updated list, including North American dates and concluding this summer with a few festivals:

02.23.10 - Gothenburg, Sweden - Bengan’s (in-store)
02.24.10 - Stockholm, Sweden - Pet Sounds (in-store)
03.01.10 - Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg
03.23.10 - Rostock, Germany - MAU
03.24.10 - Hamburg, Germany - Uebel & Gefährlich
03.25.10 - Berlin, Germany - Astra Kulturhaus
03.26.10 - Dresden, Germany - Reithalle
03.27.10 - Munich, Germany - Backstage Werk
03.28.10 - Zurich, Switzerland - Mascotte
03.29.10 - Frankfurt, Germany - Mousonturm
03.30.10 - Cologne, Germany - Live Music Hall
03.31.10 - Stuttgart, Germany - Waagenhallen
04.01.10 - Salzburg, Austria - Rockhouse
04.02.10 - Vienna, Austria - FM4 (RadioKulturhaus)
04.03.10 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Lille Vegg
04.14.10 - Oslo, Norway - Parkteatret
04.15.10 - Gothenburg, Sweden - Brew House
04.16.10 - Malmö, Sweden - KB
04.17.10 - Stockholm, Sweden - Kägelbanan
04.19.10 - Paris, France - Scopitone Club
04.20.10 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Paradiso
04.26.10 - London, UK - Hoxton Bar & Kitchen
05.02.10 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
05.03.10 - Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church
05.05.10 - New York, NY - Webster Hall
05.06.10 - Boston, MA - Paradise
05.07.10 - Montreal, QC - Cabaret Music Hall
05.08.10 - Toronto, ON - Mod Club
05.10.10 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall
05.11.10 - Minneapolis, MN - Varsity Theater
05.14.10 - Vancouver, BC - Commodore Ballroom
05.15.10 - Seattle, WA - Neumos
05.16.10 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir
05.18.10 - San Francisco, CA - Great American Music Hall
05.20.10 - San Diego, CA - House of Blues
05.21.10 - Los Angeles, El Ray
06.19.10 - Scheeßel, Germany - Hurricane Festival
07.03.10 - Borlänge, Sweden - Peace and Love Festival
07.07-07.09.10 - Hultsfred, Sweden - Hultsfredsfestivalen
07.15-07.17.10 - Arvika, Sweden - Arvikafestivalen

• Shout Out Louds:
• Merge:

[Photo: Christian Coinbergh]