Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Non-Conformist Unite: Enchanted Ape On the Way!

by Doug MacRostie

The band name Enchanted Ape has one historical reference (that the band found out after coming up with the name); Philosopher Thomas Carlyle used 'enchanted ape' as a derogatory term for people who were non-conformist or who went against the grain - perfect for this original and unique roots-rock band out of Minneapolis. I'm very excited to have Enchanted Ape for our first ever 'Closing the Tent Event' under the Rotary Tent at KAXE's Amphitheater in Grand Rapids Sat. the 15th. And this Thursday night at 6 on Centerstage MN I'll be talking with Chris O'Brien; singer, songwriter and guitarist with Enchanted Ape.

Chris and I will be talking about their latest CD Off the Ground which came out last year, and we'll hear music from their 2005 debut Three Ring Symphony. Both albums are outstanding examples of organic and evolving music with an earthy blend of acoustic, electric and slide guitars mixing in elements of jazz, blues and improvisational music. In previous blogs I've said they, "further the vibrations of the Grateful Dead" and I am VERY excited to see Enchanted Ape in action for the Closing the Tent Event on Sat. the 12th - click here for more info!

Also on Centerstage MN Thursday night there will be a set of future guests including The Hobo Nephew of Uncle Frank, which is the brother songwriting team of Ian and Teague Alexy along with drummer Paul Grill. Their new album Traveling Show is an excellent CD with their musicianship, songwriting and musical vision rising to new heights. Another future guest will be indie roots duo The Pines from Minneapolis, made up of Iowa natives David Huckfelt and Benson Ramsey. Their new CD Tremolo has a dark, Americana sound, highlighting their songwriting and musicianship. And the other future guest in the set is Steve Kaul, he's put out Solo Guitar - a wonderful (surprise) solo album featuring Steve's outstanding guitar work. Originally from Bemidji, Steve is the singer and guitarist with The Brass Kings out of St. Paul.

I've also got new music from Junkyard Empire; they're new release is called Rebellion Politik; a crazy mix of hip hop, jazz and civil-discontent. And a new self-titled release off the Iron Range from High Drama Blues which ranges from straight-up blues rock to emotional slow-moving grooves.

Next week I'll be joined by Josh Collins, son of the late John Collins - a founding member of late 60's and 70's folk-rockers Podipto from the Bemidji area. Josh will bring along previously unreleased and never-before-heard recordings!!!! It's going to be awesome :D

Centerstage MN is Thursday evenings at 6, streaming live online at; or 91.7 Grand Rapids, 89.9 Brainerd and 105.3 Bemidji. All interviews are archived at and the show is rebroadcast Sunday mornings at 6.

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