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Harpeth Rising, "Americana Sensation," at Scruffy City Ramble PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 13 May 2013 10:19

"Harpeth Rising, warm, honest, and true music by four exquisite musicians." Peter Zeijl, Folk En Zo

Voted 'Best Local Band in Nashville' by The Tennessean, the four classically trained musicians of Harpeth Rising bring an exciting and distinctively new sound to the folk genre.  With a banjo and a fiddle, you might think they're traditional bluegrass - but think again.  Cello and hand drums round out the ensemble, creating a truly unique sound.  Their virtuosic instrumentals are coupled with intimate vocals and powerful lyrics.  The group met at the Indiana University School of Music and were united - and continue to be driven by - their eclectic musical interests.  They began performing as a quartet in Nashville in 2009, playing for both Music City Roots and live in the studio of WSM the following year, and have been touring both nationally and internationally for three years.  A little bit bluegrass, a little bit classical, a little bit folk and a whole lot of original, Harpeth Rising is a band to watch.

The quartet has recently begun promoting their latest album, 'The End of the World,' which debuted in the Top Ten on the International Folk Charts.  This is an special project for Harpeth Rising as it presents songs written by David Greenberg, father of Jordana Greenberg, the band's violinist.  Harpeth Rising has been performing songs by David Greenberg for several years to much acclaim, and fans have requested this project for some time.   Tracks from the album have received several accolades including Best Song of 2012 by the No Surf Music Review and named a Finalist for the International Acoustic Music Awards.  Before the release of this album, Harpeth Rising's touring was largely focused on promoting their second album: Dead Man's Hand, produced by multiple Grammy-winner, Bil VornDick (Alison Krauss, Bob Dylan, and Bela Fleck). Some of this season's highlights have included appearances at the Cambridge Folk Festival, The Frome Festival, Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour, and ROMP Music Festival (alongside artists such as Emmylou Harris and Steve Martin).

Harpeth Rising will be playing in Knoxville at Scruffy City Ramble on May 16th at 7:00pm.  Scruffy City Ramble is a live monthly radio and television show that celebrates East Tennessee's role in American roots music by featuring nationally renowned artists that draw from the music of the region.  The show takes place in downtown Knoxville at The Square Room (4 Market Square) and is broadcast on WUTK, PBS, and WBIR.  General admission is $10, student admission is $5, and advance tickets are available at



Subbluecollar Reunites PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Rusty Odom   
Thursday, 18 April 2013 17:45

A Conversation with Kat Brock

As if the Knoxville music scene needed a boost.

Subbluecollar is one of a handful of bands that spawned a great deal of interest in the early 2000’s.  As time went on, each member went in his or her own direction, but each remained respected musicians. In April, this band will be reunited on stage at Barleys Taproom in the Old City and soon after they will hit the studio to record a new album. Here is our conversation with Kat Brock about a band that so many have fond memories of.


BLANK: How did this reunion come about? Whose idea was it?

Kat Brock: I moved back to Knoxville after spending several months in New York and several years in Nashville.  I knew I was going to get a band together when I returned, and I knew I was going to ask Joe to play with me.  He and I have an intense musical connection and I adore him as a human being.  So I called him my second day back and he agreed that we should be making some music together.  The Coveralls were playing a show at Barleys shortly after I returned and I figured it would be a great way to say hello to Dave and Bryan.  After the first song I knew I didn't want any band but them and me. It was a tight-chest-tingly feeling.  And I hadn't felt that in a while.  So Joe and I talked Dave and Bryan into giving it a shot.


Dave Campbell seems very excited about it. Is everyone involved pumped about it?

I think all of us knew it was going to be fun.  But I don't think we knew it was going to be such a bright spot in each of our lives.  We have a history and a way of working together that makes the process so enjoyable that I don't foresee us wanting to end this.  We are creating a really beautiful world.

Fine Peduncle's Metamorphosis PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Damion Huntoon   
Sunday, 24 February 2013 19:48


Fine Peduncle’s one-man engine, Cole Murphy, doesn’t put out albums. He instead refers to his musical releases as “instars,” a term derived from the molting periods of insects in which they crack their outer shells and reveal new forms, shapes, sizes and colors. Murphy takes a lot of meaning out of this. He even says that he derives a spiritual “totem” element from insects. Their natures appeal to him and to his process of making the dense and shimmering music of Fine Peduncle. Just like the brain’s slender stalk-like connectors that inspired the name, Murphy’s music spans a wide web of influences: early-‘90s industrial and R&B, the soulful loops of TV on the Radio, the digital organics of Animal Collective and the slickness of mammoth pop icons Justin Timberlake and Prince. Couple with these a stage act that usually consists of an underwear-clad Murphy coaxing the audience into a sexual fever. According to Murphy, it’s all just part of his process.

“It may seem crazy to think that stripping in my underwear in front of people and singing falsetto could be a personal journey,” says Murphy. “But it’s definitely unlocked me from a lot of the suppression that came with my upbringing.”

Spending his formative years in a conservative, Christian household in Scott County, Tennessee, Murphy has used his music as an opportunity to tap into the taboo of sexuality that has built him a wanton reputation.  Don’t think of this as some kind of gimmick; the creation of Fine Peduncle’s music goes part and parcel with this stage experience.

“It’s not like when I’m doing it in my bedroom, I’m just standing there trying to work on the singing,” says Murphy.  “I just so happen to be dancing around and hopping up on my table and shaking. I do all that stuff. It’s just me being excited.”

Moving On Up PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Alec Cunningham   
Wednesday, 20 February 2013 19:48

The Journey That Led To Brad Blackwell's Second Show at the Bijou

Trying to make it as a musician, building a reputation for yourself starting from the ground up, is difficult no matter what type of artist you may be. A select few, however, seem to find their niche faster than others.

Local musician Brad Blackwell is one of those fortunate ones. Blackwell started from scratch as a teenager, and here he is now, less than four years later, having made a name for himself as well as quite a loyal following.

Needless to say, Blackwell's music career has progressed fairly quickly over the past few years. His first album, Blue Sky, was released in January of 2010 while he was a young 19. Now, at only 23, he is preparing for his fourth release, an EP entitled Combustible.

Artists Talking Artists: Jonathan Sexton with Clay Cook of Zac Brown Band PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Jonathan Sexton   
Saturday, 12 January 2013 11:18

The Zac Brown Band’s success has exploded beyond what many ever thought possible, and they’ve done it their own way.

It would be easy to attribute Zac Brown Band’s success to copious amounts of Top 40 country radio play, however, the band’s live sound is not the typical “country music” experience.

In fact, I’m not sure an example even exists, short of early/mid-seventies Allman Brothers, of a band that has so successfully utilized a large swath of genres to keep fans on the edge of their seats.

When ZBB takes the stage at Thompson-Boling Arena on Jan. 27 at 7p.m., local fans will not only get to partake in the top-shelf musicianship the band has formed an identity around, but also the variety of songs, styles and vision they bring to the table each and every night.

I recently was able to to catch up with guitarist Clay Cook on the phone. Clay joined ZBB after touring and writing with some of music’s finest including John Mayer, Shawn Mullins, Marshall Tucker Band and more. We talked about everything from joining ZBB in the midst of a very successful solo career, to the items he would take if he were banished to a remote island, and why the Atlanta Falcons won’t win the Super Bowl.

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