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Stories by Dave Good

Willie, Johnny, and Patsy Were Here

Rough and rocky travelin’ led them to Bostonia Ballroom

“Jerry Lee Lewis just beat the hell out of the piano. He used his feet on it. He broke three keys.”

Bully for Bully

The death of grunge left Alicia Bognanno wanting more

The voice does not sound like it should be coming out of that singer’s body. I’m talking about Bully’s front person Alicia Bognanno, and I love it when that happens. The unexpected vocal skirmish that ...

Flan's the man

Tim Flannery trades his cleats and glove for a nice pair of boots and an acoustic guitar

The hometown singer/songwriter contingent is possibly the fittest and most obvious of the various music scenes in San Diego. Witness the number of open-mic nights (sometimes two or three a day) at area venues. In ...

Locals going global

San Diego joins the worldwide Make Music Day at Balboa Park

On Sunday, June 21, as part of the Balboa Park Centennial, San Diego will join some 700 cities around the globe in a one-day event called Make Music Day. First launched in France in 1982, ...

Every day is Sunday for Slackers

San Diego ex-pat saxman returns with his rocksteady act

The Slackers from New York City have a San Diego connection: meet David Hillyard, the band’s sax player. Now 45, he was born here and raised in a neighborhood in the northern part of La ...

Cabo or bust

Annual music caravan through Baja turns philanthropic

This is how Jonathan Savage’s email begins: “It isn’t often I ask for help with my extra-curricular activities, but I’m in need of a little extra financial push to kick off a fundraising campaign for ...

Reds, whites, and the blues

Sheriff tells Ramona wineries to shut down the music

“It was a really great gig. I made, on average, between $300 and $600 a month performing at the wineries in Ramona,” singer-songwriter Michael Jay Dwyer tells the Reader. Dwyer says he played “regularly at ...

Octagrape: what a strange band

Local amp-killers make it sound like pop

“Hazy rabbits-foot jams” — what a strange band Octagrape is, and I mean that in a good way. Over the three years of this quartet’s life, fans and pop-music critics alike have put every possible ...

Hello it's me: Todd Rundgren

“My idols are players like Tony Bennett and B.B. King."

The news comes before dawn about the passing of B.B. King, making it next to impossible to keep focused on the actual subject of this week’s column. An internet search turns up random scraps of ...

Where do you keep your Dracula Boots?

Kid Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds on the bill of this week's Gig To Get To at Casbah

In January, Brian Tristan announced that he would assume the identity of his alter ego, Kid Congo Powers, full-time, at least onstage. Not such a bad move — Kid Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds’ ...

Wax is back!

Will teens want Judas Priest forever?

“There was more of a connection going on between the artist and the public with vinyl.”

Is jazz the new rock?

The Akiko Tsuruga, Graham Dechter, and Jeff Hamilton Trio may think so...

Is jazz the new rock? Yes and no. Some of jazz culture will forever remain mired in the 1950s, which the industry will support by design not unlike radio’s ultracautious love for tried-and-true music like ...

Bomb shelter shoegaze

Israeli indie act Vaadat Charigim visits San Diego

An aural collection of every kind of shoegaze/dream pop you’ve ever heard, but with a hard left turn. Vaadat Charigim is the name of a band from Tel-Aviv, a trio consisting of guitarist/vocalist Yuval Haring, ...

G-Eazy, or not

San Diego State marketing major "Tilts" for gigs

On the morning that SDSU sophomore Tyler Kistler talks to the Reader, 210 of 600 tickets have so far been sold to satisfy Kistler’s end of a deal to have the rapper G-Eazy perform a ...

Virtually Corelia

“We’re bigger now than we’ve ever been,” Corelia band guitarist Chris Dower says, “even though we haven’t played shows in a while. We’ve been growing our fan base online.” Corelia is an as-yet unsigned progressive ...

Go OK Go OK Go!

OK Go is a band less famous for its music than its videos, some of which have gone viral on YouTube to the tune of 10 million hits, including one that netted the band a ...

Enter Shikari has no bad reviews

Judge for yourself at Soma this Friday

Enter Shikari brings the full menu to the stage: post hardcore, alt metal, metal core, electronica, trance, industrial, and that sound that is death to most subwoofers, dubstep. They’re from Hertfordshire, a city that is ...

Current Swell rocks folk

Music journos have called Current Swell Vancouver Island’s answer to surf rock. Originally a backyard party band from Canada, they gelled into something (give or take a few personnel changes) and then gained an audience ...

That’s too loud!

Kimm Rogers comes out of retirement.

Rogers is learning that her current hometown is not the easiest place to restart one’s career.

Hopeless Jack & the Handsome Devil sounds down home

To criticize the progressive whitening of the blues, a trend that may have gotten jump-started during the electrified 1970s, would be pointless. African-American origins notwithstanding, blues audiences have shifted away from those roots, as have ...

Vinyl Faults

“I was hoping by now to be able to describe more of the details,” Joshua Zimmerman tells the Reader, “but I have to keep it a little vague.” His band, the Silent Comedy, recently recorded ...

Doyle Bramhall II music is a train that runs right on time

The job of any Texas blues-rock guitarist is to rise above all other such Texas guitarists that came before him or her and, good lordy, that deck is stacked. The Lone Star State has given ...

Karl Denson's surreal universe

Local saxman rolls with the Stones

Rolling Stones fans will see a familiar face onstage when the band kicks off its 2015 tour at Petco Park in May — local saxophonist Karl Denson. A veteran by now of quick tour hops, ...

SoKo mines her psychic backyard

The two SoKos: first, there’s a dream-pop side where sensory input is reduced to a simple trickle of fragile chords and a voice that sounds as if filtered through layers of gauze, or, the darker ...

And the winner is...

If rock and roll doesn’t work out as a career for Rich Varville (ex–Trailerpark Rockstar), maybe rock videos will. On March 7, Varville took home Best Director honors at the San Diego Film Awards for ...

Two saxophones and a drummer — that’s Moon Hooch

Two saxophones and a drummer — that’s Moon Hooch from Brooklyn. Michael Wilbur, one of the sax players, calls the Reader from a tour stop in Pennsylvania. “We’re looking forward to getting out west,” he ...

Honeyblood is juicy rock for women

Credit to whoever at Fat Cat Records saw through the lo-fi veneer of Honeyblood’s self-made release and heard the songcrafting for what it was: money. Honeyblood wasn’t actually trying to be scuzzy. One mic and ...

Say it ain’t so

Entertainers comment on the idea of a Chargers-Raiders stadium in Carson

In February, the San Diego Chargers dropped a bomb when they announced plans to build their own stadium in Carson, California, a suburb of Los Angeles. This, in the midst of ongoing negotiations with the ...

Happy Fangs' first record could be its best

If you asked me to make a top ten list of my favorite bands of the year thus far, this San Francisco–based garage band would be somewhere near the top. Happy Fangs’ first full-length CD ...

Studios for let

Where to book your next project

Sure, you can self-record your album in your bedroom with a laptop, some software, and a few decent mics. Or, you could go the traditional route in a recording studio. But where to book your ...

Bands to watch

Anyone who has flipped through the music section of the Reader has seen the names of countless local acts listed under the banners of countless venues. In fact, there are so many bands in this ...

Happiness is Taking Back Sunday

You remember your first high school crush, yes? Who doesn’t recall that queasy over-the-falls feeling that percolated in the back of your head like some form of madness? Well, as a band, that’s where Taking ...

Jazz Vespers

“This was Big Jerr’s idea.” Archie Thompson takes a break from rehearsal for a recording session in the chapel at First Presbyterian Church downtown. He’s talking about Jazz Vespers, where each service begins with a ...

Even Antarctica

Tim Mudd gets up at 4:30 every morning and begins writing music in his University Heights home studio. Mick Van Dyck of North Park carves blocks of recording time out of his work days. Chris ...

Mac Sabbath does Black Sabbath McDonald’s style

Not a fan of Black Sabbath? Not to worry. That line is long and includes everyone from the religious right to certain members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame who made the heavy-metal ...

The Stone Foxes find their own way in

“I killed Robert Johnson with strychnine.” It’s a clever first-person accounting of the vaunted blues man’s death at the hands of a cuckold who slipped the singer a bad bottle of whiskey on the sly ...

Kate Voegele, like a female Bon Jovi

Let us count the many ways that “Hallelujah” has been covered over the years. A throng of dissimilar artists have taken a shot at that magnum opus, including Tim Buckley, Il Divo, John Bon Jovi, ...

Swami’s new trip

John Reis waxes surf rock

“I think people make up their mind whether they’re going to like something before they even hear it.”

Party like it’s 1982 with a new Motet

For those of you who missed out on acts like the Bar-Kays, the Dazz Band, Cameo, or the whole of the semi-disco dance floor ’80s in general, there’s the Motet. Some of you have not ...

Sweet suite

How it all started, the composition of a ballet by a career jazz musician: “I have a daughter,” Charles McPherson tells the Reader by phone from his Talmadge home, “who’s a dancer with the San ...

Not a punk-rock film

“The first record I ever bought?” deadpans John Reis. “It was the Jackson Five’s ‘ABC’.” Sure enough, there’s a faded purple copy of it on the table next to a child’s plastic phonograph player. “I ...

March Fourth! to the Belly Up

Like no other marching band you’ve ever seen: March Fourth! blends elements of the horn-band ’70s with gospel, funk, jazz, rock, and the circus into a marching band that does not actually march. This begs ...

Tower of Power has new music coming

Forty-six years. “Actually, 46 and a half,” Doc Kupka says by phone from New York. He’s the baritone sax player and cofounder of soul band Tower of Power, which started in Oakland, California. I wonder ...

Don’t rule out the Flesh Eaters

It’s far too soon to rule out the Flesh Eaters. By now, the band members are all on the verge of being old, but no matter. What they bring to the stage is about 200 ...

Ancient rock music

When guitarist Sergio Estrada and the band Relax Max take the House of Blues stage January 9 with fellow rockers the 6ONE9 band and Madman and Arena, he expects to see a lot of his ...

Chain and the Gang at the Hideout

Crime rock from the nation’s capital! No, it’s not a new genre, but more of a joke thing from a rock and roll front man with an excess of dynamism. You get the feeling that ...

Phaser finger

In December, Timothy Joseph took over as host of the Local 94/9, a radio show on FM94/9 that features local bands. This, following long-time show host Tim Pyles’s move to the Loudspeaker, also a locals-only ...

Cash’d Out Christmas with Rosie Flores

A double-header with Cash’d Out and Rosie Flores for your holiday pleasure. Cash’d Out is a Johnny Cash tribute act. They’ve been around San Diego now for close to a decade. For what it’s worth, ...

Going once, going twice...

“Is that the actual key?” Eric Denton says with obvious delight. “And it still works?” It does. “We should raise the price,” he says, only half joking about the $99 price tagged onto an old ...

I make 300 cups of coffee every day. I get $9 an hour plus tips.

News from the Fight-for-Fifteen front

Minimum wage is not meant to be a living wage.

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