MUSICIANS/BANDS DOING THEIR STORY
Where do you start a story with no real beginning an no end in sight ?
Tom Clissold started playing his own take on southern styled music busking on the streets of England. Along with playing guitar and singing in Rollin' Sixes, a metal band, there was a definite need to start writing some songs on the old acoustic. After busking around about 2 years, these first few songs finally became an EP, his first solo effort. With no budget, just a computer, some bad mics and a pile of instruments, the Smoke and Bones EP was released in August of 2019. This was followed by whatever gigs could be booked in the local area of Gloucestershire, UK, and as always, the busking continued.
The following year was 2020, and in the early couple of months, the gigs countinued and the bookings were coming in, new songs were being written and the idea of a full album to start off what looked like a promising year was born. Still with no budget and the same bad mics, The Devils Long Lost Lamb was recorded in 3 dagys of straight work in March 2020. Much like Smoke and Bones, and taking some songs from the previous EP, it was recorded, performed and produced by Toù and Tom alone.
By the time the recording process for The Devils Long Lost Lamb had begun, the UK was in total lockdown as an impact of the coronavirus. The gigs stopped, the bookings for the whole year were cancelled, and even busking had to be put on hold. Throughout the last 15 years leading up to this point, Tom had been working as a welder, and by now had been furloughed. Having no gigs to play, and more time on his hands than he had for his entire adult life, Tom did what alot of fellow artists did. He started to live stream shows. This started awkwardly sitting in front of a phone in a bedroom and playing a bunch of songs to whoever might be watching. To his surprise it was not only quite popular, bit it was a hell of a lot of fun, and the weekly Friday live streams were born.
Furlough from his job eventually became redundancy in July of 2020, so with no job to go back to, a bit of a payout and even more time on his hands, Tom did the only sensible thing. He bought a new guitar and some decent mics, a laptop and a webcam, and concentrated on the production side of his live streamed shows. It was a hell of a learning curve, but the evolution of the streams is clear, and are still going to this day. There were a few sparse oppurtunities to play live in 2020, and Tom took full advantage of these, as well as contant busking to earn some sort of living.
As the live streams continued, a small following of regulars would be there every week, and after using near enough every pun of the word 'stream' in their titles, Tom ultimately decided that it needed a permanent name, and The Godless Country Live Stream was born. Along with this, he decided to make his own artwork and permanent logo for this musical endevour, and every week it seemed there were more people coming to see what was going on every Friday afternoon. One of these people happenend to be Philip Vandendriessche, who invited Tom to play the Roots in The Jar Online Festival. This was a great oppurtunity that Tom jumped at the chance to be part of, and is proud to be part of what was a fantastic weekend great music.
Now, here in 2021, the world still seems the bleak place we hoped we could leave in 2020, but music there must be, and as well as The Godless Country Live Streams still happening every Friday, 14.30 UK time, there are new songs and a new record on the horizon. The world might be in a pretty bad way, but hell, it doesn't mean it can't have a good sountrack. right ?
So, looking forward, also uncertain, but this much we can be sure of. There will be a new record very soon, and as soon as gigs and live shows are happening again, you'll be able to catch Tom on a stage somewhere just doing what he does, playing that old Godless Country Music.
Meet Punk Rock Doll LAUREN NAPIER
Model, writer, journalist, musician, and singer to name a few, Lauren Napier has garnered many roles to provide for her ever-changing address. Moving to Tennessee, Lauren was surrounded by country music and southern twang. However, it was the discrimination against Black and biracial artists which initially deterred her from entering the industry.
Understanding that she didn’t have to fit into the classic country mindset and could forge her own path, she returned to country music. A fan of Bob Dylan and the Ramones, Lauren has been described as a Punk Rock Doll. On January 15th Lauren released her album “Mourning Moon.” Lauren describes the album as “the melancholy spaghetti western soundtrack I had always wanted.” Each song in the album has its own narrative. “Sound of Fire” tells of the Berlin riots, “St. Charles Romance” about her favorite bridge in Prague, and “Dirty Deeds” inspired by a photo of two migrant boots hanging off a bed frame. While performing, Lauren is most moved by the audience’s reactions, a thank you for helping them to feel the same emotions she had when writing the song.
With plans to record at Church Hill Studios in Oregon, Lauren can’t wait for “the cat, the fellow, and I to get back on the road and tour” when possible.
source : Woman of Country Music
Dan is a proper storyteller. Raised on Bruce Springsteen, it shows. His songs have the detail and intimacy of The Felice Brothers at their finest. His strong narratives harbour a darkness akin to Townes Van Zandt. His voice is a mixture of yearning and insistent. It's like Richmond Fontaine went out for a beer with The Band and they both came out the better for it.
The thread of the rambling man runs through his work in the same way it runs through the man himself. He's lived in London, Toronto, Amsterdam and Haarlem, and toured all over the world. He got good at leaving and he got good at writing about it. Last year he opened for the great C.W Stoneking in Europe. These are traveling songs, songs about being lost, living hard, living free and dying; singer-songwriter stuff but the harder kind.
At first listen, “Never Settle” is an outstanding collection of dark, alt-folk, story-songs with a restless cast of misfit characters; hobos, murderers, daredevils, and lovers. But after a few listens you start to understand that all these protagonists, for all their faults, are searching for truth. Something that the artist, himself, has spent his whole adult life on the road trying to find.
In the opening track, “Lord, Have Mercy on a Rambling’ Man”, he is begging to be forgiven his evils. Through a series of twists and turns and hard lessons learned, he reconciles on the final track, that “you can’t find your own way if you ain’t got lost”.
With the help of Joar de Baat and Tom Radsma of acclaimed Dutch bands, Mantra and Nemsis, Dan German has created something here that feels both fresh and familiar. Something ethereal & emotional, rooted in Outlaw. As if Phoebe Bridgers was dancing on the mixing desk with the ghost of Townes Van Zandt.
The production is perfect. It was mastered by four-time Grammy winner and 11-time Grammy nominee, Darcy Proper. She said this of this album: “On first listen, what struck me as special about this album was the storytelling quality. The vocals feel natural and courageous, the character in each song immediately becomes real to the listener - not always a “good guy” but always interesting. The overall production serves the music perfectly - simple and raw, professional quality that hasn’t had the life polished out of it and lets the story shine through”.
Samm Bones 2020 Experience
I was asked to write an article by the founder of the Belgium music festival Roots in the Jar about my experiences in 2020. I have never written an article about myself but I suppose I should practice vanity more often. My year started with a mini-tour in Florida that began in Miami and made it's way up north along the Atlantic coast. When I wasn't on stage I was dancing alone in the salsa clubs, bar hopping punk dives and basking in Florida's street art. At this point in my career I was a half-time touring musician and a full-time General Manager for a Laos and Thai restaurant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Shortly thereafter the virus made its way to the lungs of Americans moving swiftly throughout the nation. I was laid off from my job just a week later; I stocked up on food and supplies with my last paycheck, hoping for the best. About 2 weeks in I kept hearing about low income families and elderly in Pittsburgh going without food; being that the closest food pantry that was open for limited hours was a 35 minute drive from the city center. I then found The Wellness Collective, a mutual aid organization that curated a system to get these families and elderly meals and supplies. I continued to do deliveries until the end of May, afraid of the very air I breathed- but the empath in me decided my safety wasn’t important.
George Floyd was publicly murdered by Minneapolis police on May 25th 2020. In response I took to the streets protesting police brutality daily amongst hundreds to thousands pittsburghers. I knew it was my time to hit the road, I felt that the movement was bigger than anything that I had ever seen before and set out to find my role. On June 6th I marched on DC along with tens of thousands of people- 5 days after Trump used tear gas, impact ammunition, flash bangs, pepper spray, shields, batons and horses to clear protesters out of the way for Trump’s photo op at St. John’s church.
When Rayshard Brooks was murdered by an Atlanta Police officer I drove straight down to Georgia from camping in the West Virginia mountains and protested in the streets of downtown Atlanta with The Millennial Leader as our black leadership that day. While I was in Atlanta, Trump announced that he would host his first Trump Rally since the pandemic- on Juneteenth in Tulsa, Oklahoma. So I headed to Tulsa, stopping at protests along my way- camping in my car in the swamps, the Ozarks, and whatever nature I could find.
Trump moved the date of his rally to June 20th, 2020- I arrived that morning. I spent the entire duration as a de-escalator and body shield for my BIPOC protesters. Fighting the violent Trump supporters as they continuously attacked protesters, the National Guard and riot police. Marching through the riot lines, enduring impact ammunition while we made our way to Black Wall Street. It felt like victory. I then made my way to my hometown- Portland, Oregon; the Anarchist Jurisdiction.
I've spent the last 8 months as a de-escalator and production event team member on the ground with my team JUICE Crew PDX. The amount of physical, emotional and spiritual trauma that myself and my comrades have endured by the hands of Portland Police brutality and armed racists and trump supporters- is unforgivable. I can’t bring myself to share the stories that haunt my head. The amount of violence that we have seen and encountered. The armed racists and police that storm these streets, assaulting my comrades and our BIPOC community. I thought I had seen hardship before the year of 2020, but I was gravely mistaken. With all that said, I am honored to serve by the sides of my comrades who I now call family. I wouldn't have it any other way.
Then, suddenly, it all came to a halt when I was diagnosed with the virus we all fear. I was quarantined in a dystopian-like shelter, luckily my case was mild. Unfortunately the virus still haunts me, I suffer from; memory loss, cognitive fog, tinnitus, shortness of breath, ear pain and fatigue. Nevertheless I am grateful to have made it through barely scathed. I took the time in quarantine to finish my memoir; The Travelin' Itch . It is now available for pre-sale HERE.
Without live music to reach for as my coping tool, my spiritual fulfillment, my hobby, my career, my art- essentially my way of life; I had to take my vigorous ambition and pivot it's focus onto my activism work. I long for the days that I will stand on a stage again but for now I will continue to fight in the streets- uplifting BIPOC voices and supporting my resistance community here in Portland- in efforts to see a better world some day. Best believe though, that when it's finally safe, I will be touring the goddamn globe year round.
I am currently working hard at rebuilding my career path with a focus on journalism. I now have a youtube channel, podcast and magazine. In order to support my projects, please follow, like, subscribe and do all the social media world supportive things you can do. This passion project is donation based and donations are greatly appreciated in these uncertain times. Thank you for always supporting me in whatever I do, whether it's music, art, writing, traveling and just adventure all around. Your continuous support is a huge part of my drive to keep doing all the crazy shit that I do.
check out her adventures on
THE YEAR 2020 in the eyes of WHISKEYDICK
2020 marks the 15th Year for WHISKEYDICK!! HELL YEEHAW & THANKS ALL YALL!
The Dick started out killer with the Joining up with our dear friend James Hunnicutt and being asked to do the honor of opening up DimeBash Jan. 2020 in Santa Ana, CA.. then we went on to start our residency/ Cali Tour at Doll Hut in Anaheim, CA. Also with James and our brothers The Hajj. This is when chit hit the giant fan.. In which We didn’t let that affect the fact that we were at a studio and actually got some Tres Bastardos songs in motion and performed livestream with James and The Hajj.. all the while the shut down was quickly creeping down the coast. Then the separation. Rev drove back to TX., James flew to Washington & lastly I flew back to Colorado. Not being able to play music and make a living with the added separation from everyone has most definitely taken a toll on the Ol’ psyche for sure. While 2020 isn’t a year for the “Good Books” it still has its upsides like being asked to be a part every single one of the Roots in The Jar festivals which brought us together to play music and watch our friends perform!!!
How it all started :
It all started when Te Kay decided to move from his old hometown to Bürbach in 2020. His neighbour was a longhaired guitarplayer, a kind of person you want drink a beer with. On one of those evenings where the beers and whiskey were also part of it they noticed that they had nearly the same interest in style of music. They listend to some music and as it came to the song "Reach for the sky" from Social Distortion, Te Kay started to sing with his rough voice. Simon was kinda speechless and could only say 'Man, you've got THE VOICE'. A couple beers later they had the great idea to set up a Band. Unlike other drunk ideas this idea became real. They first wanted to make some Motörhead-like stuff, a band out of three members, electric guitars and judy in your face stuff. To test it out Simon played Rattlesnake Blues on his acoustic guitar and Te Kay sang over it. It worked out good. So that's how this accoustic duo was founded in april 2020.
The name :
The wanted to have a name wich represents the sound of dark and rough with some kind of brutal. Two men, dark, brutal and all this stuff. Undertaker ? executioner ? As the were neither a part of WWE or a Trash Metal band so they reached for an old fashioned word. Headsmen, but only Headsmen is kinda lame so because they both smoke, they desided to call themselfs Smokin' Headsmen.
The Inspiration :
In the beginning there inspiration was some kickass Rock'nRoll like Motörhead. They transferd this idea with more possibilities. With the setting of one guitarplayer and one singer with a bassdrum and a tambourine they soon got a deeper view in the Dark Country or Murderfolk genre. Musicians and bands like Brother Dege, Shawn James, Colter Wall and Tejon Street Corner Thieves were a huge inspiration and with that the passion of playing acoustic music.
the year 2020 trough the eyes of Smokin' Headsmen
It started with some beers and now they are going to produce their first full length album, so you can say that 2020 was infact a great year. They are made a huge progress in making music, writing songs and all this stuff. Simon increased his skills to produce music especially mixing and mastering and in general his guitar play. Te Kay is able to deepen his skills on graphic design and all this visual stuff and of course in writing lyrics and singing. So we can say that Smokin' Headsmen definitely made the best of this Covid year and from just beeing 2 friends they are now a 100% selfmade band. They had the experience of playing their first gig at some good friends of them and the livestream at the Roots in the Jar Online Music Festival, an opportunity they won't forget, for now they sure hope to play live in 2021.
"A Hell a lot of Smoke is in the air... Smoldering through the batwing doors of Tombstone Inn, wherein the Smokin' Headsmen are just entering the stage. The singer joings within the smoke with his raspy voice and lets the shack roar while the other guy uses the guitar to let sound some wierd kind of rough, dark music. This music, a wierd mix of Blues and Country with a portion of Rock'and Roll, is what sticks in their soul. They sing about this short life's sins, joys and horrors. About things you and I go through one day or another. Take your booze, raise your glass and rumble, laugh and dance - only late after midnight will you steal away into your bed, shuddering and shivering.
a special thanks to TeKay and Simon for the info.
This is the story of
(a German Roots band from the Wuppertal)
It is told, that the grand granddads of these 3 blokes, Kurt, Jupp and Mike made some moonshine back in the mountains and, by chance, invented some kind of superfuel to travel time.
Others say the guys played old style music in different bands and accidentally met up at a party when suddenly there was a lack of electricity and therefore performed some songs without amps and the audience seemed to like it.
Another story says that during the war three guys smuggled pyjamas across the border to keep their families alive.
The truth seems to lie in the middle.
Today the three of them have joined to perform acoustical gems from a time when life felt like living in a black and white movie.