Cracker’s David Lowery explains himself – one song at a time

David Lowery has always been the articulate, inspired, not-afraid-to-let-go-on-stage type of singer for which I am a sucker.  Show some passion and an ability to both  understand and play music that has roots to songs that came before it, and I may be hooked.  And I really like it if they can politely rock the shit out of their own tunes.

Lowery is the frontman for  the band Cracker, and also –  for those with any memory of 80’s college rock –  Camper Van Beethoven.  He’s launched a blog that may prove to the the best rock music writing of 2010.  On 300songs.com, Lowery writes about each of 300 songs he has penned.  But the genius of  the execution – the reason the writing becomes more than simple narcissism –  is because of the detours he takes, into stories that feel like letters from a friend.

Stories about taking his band into Las Vegas with his band for th first time.  Squaring old disagreements. Explaining the history and intrigue of the Lost Coast of California.  Including chord charts and lyrics for the featured song.  How’s that for a start?

 Always, Lowery is writing interesting prose -the Hunter Thompson version of the truth.   Real and slightly psychedelic.

Whether or not you are a fan who has seen the band at The Vogue or Birdy’s or a festival in Indy, you can trust me: the music he’s made with Cracker has been some of the best rock/Americana/alt-country/whatever of the past 20 years. 

Now we get a proudly woozy blog  – about songs I haven’t even heard, but know I need to. Especially now., because Lowery made me want to.

Read it here

Lowery is slated to release his first-ever solo record, The Palace Guards  on February 1, 2011 on Savoy/429 Records.

VIDEO: Cracker – “Eurotrash Girl”, with some of guitarist Johnny Hickman’s fine raunch.

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VIDEO: Cracker – Happy Birthday to Me

Here’s one of those bands that just keeps making very good music. I love Cracker. They live in that musical place of bands who are road rockers, just a little good crazy but smart too, and like to play that three-chord two-guitar rock and roll, and do it dirty and inspired. A friend sent this to me today. I give to you. Enjoy the simplicity, the sentiment and the backbeat.

Cancel the Vote: It’s the Country Music Song of the Year from Cracker and Drive-By Trucker Patterson Hood

They waited until November, but there’s the freakin’ country music song of the year. Love the sound of the recording too, and the killer lead guitar lines. Buh-rilliant.  Cracker and Patterson Hood team up to blend their stuff together.  And it works.

Twang Rock News – Digital albums up for country; Cracker yes, Bruce no for Indy; Pearl Jam song preview

Digital music: Online country album sales grew more than 50 percent in the first half of this year. The country music industry sold 2.35 million digital albums for the year through June 28, a growth of 832,000 units, or about 55 percent, which beat all other popular music genres, according to Nielsen SoundScan said. On the other hand, country CD sales were down 7 percent so far in 2009

springsteen_gtrupNew Springsteen dates announced; No Indianapolis show – Quite a few tour stops in states that Bruce missed –  in Florida, Ohio and Michigan—as well as returns to a few cities, like Chicago, DC, and Philadelphia. There is no Indianapolis date of the calendar, and don’t expect one to be added. His show in March 2008 failed to sell out at Conseco Fieldhouse, as he might have had 13,000 there. His Seeger Sessions tour stop at Verizon Wireless Music Center was a killer show, but they had less than 8,000 there for that show.  Head to St. Louis, Chicago or Detroit if you want to see the band.

There are no West coast dates but the Southeastern U.S. gets shows in Nashville, Tampa, Ft. Lauderdale, and Greenville in September; to the Midwest in St. Louis and Kansas City in October. In November: Live in New York City, as Bruce and the Band return to Madison Square Garden for a  pair of shows. The run ends November 15 in Milwaukee.  He’s already got number shows at Giants Stadium already sold out.

Upcoming Indianapolis show worth putting on the calendar: longtime alternative country/rockers Cracker with local rootsy pop purveyors Henry French and the Shameless at the Vogue on August 27
New Cracker video:

Pearl Jam has new music online from their upcoming album, Backspacer (out September 20) called “The Fixer.” It’s already a mainstay on AAA, rock and alternative radio.

lylelovettLyle Lovett combines both originals and songs “by some of my favorite Texas singer-songwriters” on his next album, which is due out Oct. 20. “This is a combination of my songs and the approach I took on (1998’s) ‘Step Inside This House,’ ” on which he also covered material by other songwriters he likes.