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Stories by Dave Good

Honky-tonker Nikki Lane

Country-rock outlaw wants All or Nothin'

Yep, it’s country music through and through, with plenty of South Carolina drawl, reverb, guitar twang, and liberal amounts of pedal-steel guitar to close the deal. But don’t be fooled by Nikki Lane’s alt-rock roots ...

Holly Golightly Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda

British duo the Brokeoffs play Casbah Saturday night

When finally we connect by telephone, Holly Golightly is in transit somewhere in Minneapolis, recovering from two weeks of road flu. The conversation is abbreviated by random bouts of coughing. The Brokeoffs — two people, ...

Houndmouth rings the Band's bell

Indiana Americana coming to Belly Up Friday the 13th

Houndmouth is one of those bands for which the songs seem to play themselves, minus fanfare or any particular direction. That’s an illusion, of course. The melodies and the storylines rise above the sloppy musicianship ...

Roots Covenant is me

San Diego reggae band on the trials of being a San Diego reggae band

“The scene here’s really healthy,” says Mike Benge. The Helix High School band director is talking about the popularity of reggae music in San Diego. “It’s one of the more healthy music scenes here, next ...

Death to Bushwalla! Long live Bushwalla!

Trip-hop comic kills off his alter ego

These are the last days to catch Bushwalla performing as Bushwalla. According to his own crowd source funding campaign, the singer/songwriter plans to retire the stage name and alter ego he has performed as for ...

Blues bad boy Jonny Lang grows up

Lang takes the stage at Belly Up on Tuesday

Years ago, blues guitarist Walter Trout (who recently came back from the near-dead) saw the handwriting on the wall. “Every town I go to has got its own teenaged guitar slinger these days,” he complained ...

Seattle sludge slingers

Mudhoney's back at Casbah Saturday night!

Possibly no one that saw this band live in 1988 expected them to be around for more than a few weeks, let alone 30 years, and not because they were awful, but because Mudhoney was ...

Gram Rabbit's desert space rocktronica

Jesika von Rabbit's band hops into Belly Up on Wednesday

Gram Rabbit, from Joshua Tree, California, has been around for at least a decade and has released several albums, beginning with 2004’s Music to Start a Cult To. An underwear manufacturer broke them out in ...

Year-long La Mesa Village renovation takes its toll

New sidewalks, no customers

Sometime during the final weekend of August, Ari Bejar made a decision that would reverberate throughout the downtown La Mesa Village. He carefully hand-lettered his final message in chalk on a menu board, and come ...

A Phil Woods thing

Charles McPherson remembers the Grammy-winning jazz-sax player

“The last gig I played with Phil Woods was in April, in Newark, New Jersey,” hometown bebop saxophonist Charles McPherson tells the Reader. “It was one of his last shows. It was kind of a ...

Beth Hart: The blues in tattoos

The saucy singer hits Belly Up Friday night

She is the embodiment of every one of the best of the blues stylists I grew up listening to during the ’60s and the ’70s. Beth Hart has got Janis Joplin and Etta James and ...

Trending: Rock bands that do R&B

Leading the way: Vintage Trouble

It’s the new big thing: pairing a soul-singing frontman with a hard-driving rock outfit. Vintage Trouble may be to blame (in part) for the success of the trend. They’ve been strong ever since they went ...

Jackson Boone's hippie heart

Portlandian touring through town with his second set of psych-folk, Natural Changes

Starlit has been called one of the best new releases to come out of Portland in the past year. The song collection centers around Jackson Boone’s new-found sobriety, they say. Whatever. Here is a singer/songwriter ...

San Diego radio personality Sue Delaney remembered

Goodbye to Sue

“She raised the bar,” KGB FM morning-show cohost Coe Lewis says of the radio personality who held her same position some 32 years ago. “Sue Delaney was a game-changer,” Lewis explains. “I think she was ...

Professor Longhair's prized pupils

The New Orleans Suspects' musical gumbo can make anything sound like a party

A NOLA super-group, if ever there was one. The New Orleans Suspects started out under a different name a few years ago as the result of some jam sessions at a New Orleans nightclub called ...

The cheeky swagger of Twin Peaks

From Mom's basement to opening dates with Wavves

From one mom’s basement to your ears: the four core members of Twin Peaks (nothing to do with the television series of the same name, they once told a reporter) know each other going back ...

La Mesa Village's Cosmos...closed. Yelp!

Coffee shop (and much more) seems a casualty of sidewalk improvements

Not a good start to the week for early risers or musicians: on Monday morning, September 1, the regulars at Cosmos Coffee Café in La Mesa arrived to find locked doors and a hand-chalked sign ...

Steve 'n' Seagulls fiddle with heavy metal — literally

Finnish folkies play hard-rock covers with old-time gear in four-part harmony

It seemed at first like another Internet prank: last summer, someone posted a video of a quartet of hillbillies out in the snowy woods, surrounded by farm implements and barn animals, playing on accordion, banjo, ...

Homegrown's got a new harvester

Josh Damigo on local radio, bands, and the San Diego Music Awards

“Yeah, Mookie and I are doing Homegrown Hour,” Josh Damigo tells the Reader over lunch at a La Mesa coffee shop. Mookie is San Diego Uptown News reporter Marc “Mookie” Kaczor. “I’ve always thought I ...

Damned North Park

The Damned's drummer Pinch finds solace in Spring Valley

“I know what the weather’s like back home. My wife keeps bloody complaining about it.” This, followed by a case of the giggles. It’s Pinch, the Damned’s drummer of the past 16 years, on the ...

The Aristocrats — hippies on jazz

Trio makes a meal of the Kentucky Meat Shower of 1876

Stranger than fiction by a country mile: the Kentucky meat shower, as reported by the New York Times in March of 1876 was a filthy (and thankfully short-lived) rain of little pieces of raw meat ...

Teagan Taylor's family band

Local singer, jazz-pop trumpeter comes of age

I met Teagan Taylor, the singing pop-jazz trumpeter, a few years ago at a party. Not just any party — it was Larry Zeiger’s pre–New Year’s Eve annual goody. Taylor was in her early teens ...

Good gets Metz

Our pop culture critic likes it loud and Metz II delivers

That a fan base committed themselves to Metz post haste is further proof, I think, of the theory that every person has at least one big primitive scream locked up somewhere deep inside them that, ...

Cowboy Mouth's primal scream

New Orleans–based alt-rock vets set up at Soda Bar Saturday night

Everybody’s got a primal scream locked up inside they just can’t let out, right? Reason enough to go to Cowboy Mouth — they’ll do it for you. I think the fomenting of public catharsis is ...

Three minutes to Nashville

San Diego country singer finds greener pastures

“All my friends and family are here,” country singer/songwriter Suzanne Harper tells the Reader, “but it’s time to go.” Go where? She and her husband Ross, their two children, and a fellow band member named ...

Putting faces to the Unknown Mortal Orchestra

Web-hit psychedelic rock trio sells out Casbah

In 2010 a singer/songwriter and guitarist named Ruban Nielson posted an original track to his Bandcamp site. Pop music bloggers got their hands on it, reposted it all over the internet, and due to the ...

The Producers

They bring out the best in you.

“The producer is an ego booster, a cheer leader, and a critic. It’s all about getting them to do their best work.”

Carlsbad or bust

Annual music festival turns to Kickstarter for support

The simple math works like this: another $8000 needs to be pledged this week or the Carlsbad Music Festival gets a big fat zero. At the time of writing, 32 potential donors have thus far ...

Chappo's call to action

East Coast rock-rollers explore black holes, time warps, and parallel universes

There’s this band called Chappo, and the opening 16 bars of their song “5-0” are a call to action for the generation of us who grew up in the midst of the first wave of ...

A new look for jazz: Natalie Cressman

Trombone vocalist slides into Dizzy's P.B. digs

The new face of jazz (or at least one of them) has tattoos and wears yoga pants. Raised on Brazilian and Afro-Cuban rhythms, with straight-ahead instrumental chops worthy of a Wycliffe Gordon and yet equally ...

G Burns: the screaming red Ferrari of jug bands

Local folkies will take you waaaaaaay back at the Black Cat

“Jug band — the term refers to a specific style of music and a specific historical period,” Clinton Davis tells the Reader. “And most of those bands were in the 1930s and ’40s, and they ...

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.

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