Tuesday, April 13, 2010

From Urban Hillbillies to Native Hip-Hoppers

by Doug MacRostie

In a recent e-mail conversation with a Statewide organization, it was asked if Centerstage MN can be easily categorized into a sub-genre like folk, blues or rock... I responded that CSMN is purposefully programmed and produced to NOT fit into any category other than "music" and I've got the mondo-variety this week to prove it with the Urban Hillbilly Quartet in-studio, music from Trampled by Turtles new CD "Palomino" and Leech Lake hip-hop artist Mino Biimadiziwin. Tune in this Thursday night at 6!

Erik Brandt and the Urban Hillbilly Quartet are a St. Paul based Americana roots-rock band who just released their 7th album, "Bring in the Sails," after starting as a jam session back in 1995. Their music ranges from traditionally influenced Americana to modern rock, often blending these and other styles together for a unique and engaging, story-driven presentation. They've also been traveling with a projector and artist doing live and original art during performances - making this the first time a multi-media presentation is being performed on Centerstage MN in the air-studio.

Trampled by Turtles new CD "Palomino" is another excellent release from this Duluth based eclectic band. While still instantly identifiable as Turtles, this album once again features the band pushing the boundaries of "new-grass," lead by the intimate and passionate lyrics of Dave Simonett. Sometimes furiously fast, other times consumingly slow, always outstanding. I'm working on getting Dave on to talk about it in the near future :D

We'll also hear another song from More Than Lights' "The Electric Prescription for All Your Funky Illz," a great hybrid CD of rock/hip-hop along with a new artist to Centerstage MN, Mino Biimadiziwin (formerly known as Wah Wah Tay). I don't know much about him yet other than he's from the Leech Lake Rez and the video for his song Indigenous Holocaust is a breathtakingly powerful piece about the historical trauma on Native American people. He samples from The Dixie Chicks "Not Ready to Make Nice" (a Grammy-winning song penned by MN's own Dan Wilson). Check out the video:

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

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