Bluegrass singer and guitarist, Alex MacLeod, shares some of the finds on Wickenden Street in Providence that he holds dear, how he fuels up for a long fishing trip (hint: "Cumbys" is involved), a spot in Central Falls that he must visit whenever in the area, and how one of his favorite RI events is one he's actually never been to.
Included at the end is the song "Stagger Lee" from Rock Hearts album Starry Southern Nights.
Alex MacLeod passes along some of the wisest advice I've heard about how to connect with an audience and truly be a pro musician. He also gives some tips on how to learn and advance your bluegrass talents.
Also, as you heard in the full episode, Alex had the opportunity to play in one of the most well-known New England bluegrass bands of all time, Northern Lights. And to me... it's just such a wonderful thing that he got to be a part of representing Rhode Island in that way. After being a band for 35 years Northern Lights played their last show on March 13th, 2010. At the end of this mini-episode I've included a song from that evening - "Lonesome Road" (audio credit: steveide59) that featured Alex on rhythm guitar and vocals. I hope you enjoy it!
"Alex MacLeod has a long history in the RI bluegrass scene! In this episode we talk about his stint playing in the legendary band Northern Lights, how his latest group Rock Hearts got their start, some fun stories recording their debut album, and what events such as the Ocean State Bluegrass Festival - that's happening this weekend, Sept. 18th +19th - can mean for the community of musicians in our area. "
Interlude song order:
"Whispering Waters" by Rock Hearts (from Starry Southern Nights) "Starry Southern Nights" by Rock Hearts (from Starry Southern Nights)
Congratulations to our banjo playing buddy, Joe Deetz, and his original composition, Juxtaposed. This is such a fun banjo tune and apparently we aren't the only ones that think so. Thanks to all our friends and fans for requesting the tune.
Joey Deetz hit a home run with this mashing banjo tune he calls, Juxtaposed. The guys had a blast laying this down in Dark Shadow Studios with Stephen Mougin and Ned Luberecki. Check out Stephen Mougin's guitar break.... smashing! It's available on all formats.
Give a listen and be sure you request it from your favorite bluegrass DJ.
Rock Hearts is very excited to introduce our new fiddler, Austin Scelzo.
Austin is a Connecticut-native who came to bluegrass music via his training as a Music Educator.
Austin brings a wealth of musical knowledge, a great ear, outstanding fiddling, excitement for the music and not to mention, Youth! (Which comes with technological know-how and computer savvy)
Austin is also a committed steward of bluegrass music, teaching Wernick Method Jam classes, creating and maintaining the performance venue, Bluegrass Coffeehouse, as well as launching the Connecticut Bluegrass Music Association.
He's a tremendous talent, a great guy, and will be a great addition to the band.
Alex MacLeod, lead singer of the band states, "All of the guys in this band, from the original founding members to the current members, (Monty McClanahan, Pete Kelly, Danny Musher, Joe Deetz), along with newer members Billy Thibodeau and Rick Brodsky, have been the most outstanding people.... not just fabulous musicians, but truly wonderful guys who bring talent and ability and leave their egos at the door...that's been a winning formula for the band and Austin fits the bill perfectly."
Rock Hearts released a highlight single, Wake Up and Smell the Coffee. Written by the late, Bill Smith, former band mate and lifelong friend of our own, Bill Thibodeau. The two Bills spent time together as members of regional favorites, the Bluegrass Supply Company.
Wake Up and Smell the Coffee is experiencing outstanding request and chart activity.
We couldn't be happier as we are preparing to usher in the summer with two festivals apperances in June: Blistered Fingers Family Bluegrass Festival in Litchfield, ME and the Taste of Podunk in Suffield, CT.
So thankful for all the DJs who are giving us spins on their shows and keeping the bluegrass community entertained through these crazy times. Thanks to our friends and fans who are requesting the tune as well!!
Looking forward to seeing you all out there.
Until then, be safe and keep picking and grinning.