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Lajon of Sevendust - photo by Angela Ransom Villand

Sevendust 2003

by Sarah Klosterbuer
September 2003

If you’re looking forward to Sevendust hitting you with the kind of high-energy rock show that’s made them famous, you’re going to have to wait a few weeks. Before hitting the road with Staind later this fall, Sevendust will be through the area with a handful of acoustic shows. “It’s the quiet before the storm,” says front man Lajon Witherspoon.

Sevendust’s latest album, “Seasons,” emerges in the wake of three successful albums, but nothing that has dominated the charts or mainstream radio.  When the band chose Butch Walker , an artist and producer who is best known for his pop rock work, to produce the album, many speculated that it was an attempt to gain a cross genre appeal.  Witherspoon takes offense to the suggestion. “We worked with Butch because he’s coming from where we’re coming from,” Witherspoon says. “We’ve known Butch since the beginning of our career.”


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All Girl Summer Fun Band in Maximum Ink in September 2003 - photo by Michael Lavine

All Girl Summer Fun Band

by David A. Kulczyk
September 2003

This year, one of the best CDs of all time, “2” by Portland’s All Girl Summer Fun Band, was released on K Records and in a great feat of resolve, I drove 140 miles, first stopping in San Francisco to pick up my friend Gray Six and then to San Jose to my cousin Dan ‘s place.  Dan then drove to Los Gatos, where at an all ages club nestled in a lush park in the Santa Cruz Mountains to see “The All Girl Summer Fun Band” who by all accounts was the best live band in the world that day.


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Blue Man Group on the cover of Maximum Ink in October 2003 - photo by Christopher McCollum

Blue Man Group

by Andrew Frey
October 2003

The official Blue Man Group website, Blueman.com, states, “Blue Man Group is a creative organization dedicated to creating exciting and innovative work in a wide variety of media.”

Sometimes musicians are creative. Other times they are original. Occasionally they smash thru the basic trapping of genre rules and create category defying experiences unlike any other. The critically acclaimed Blue Man Group is just such a performance experience.

Perhaps you first saw BMG on those unique Intel Pentium television commercials, or maybe you have seen them on one of their numerous “Tonight Show” appearances, (13 to date, see www.bluemanlibrary.com). Or maybe you were one of the lucky ones to see their crowd pleasing set on “Moby’s” AREA 2 tour in 2002. Perhaps you have visited one of their permanent locations and witnessed their great theatrical performance. Where ever you may know them from, their trademark cobalt grease paint faces, funky yet technical performances and PVC drums leave an indelible impression.

The founding three members of BMG, Chris Wink, Matt Goldman and Phil Stanton started creating their own unique brand of multisensory experiences as early as 1988 on the streets of New York. Then, after a breakout run at LaMama (New York’s most prestigious experimental theatre) in 1990, they landed in the Astor Place Theatre in 1991 and have been there ever since. With this flagship venue in place, BMG kept expanding into more major market areas. To date BMG has permanent locations in New York, Boston, Chicago, and Las Vegas, with plans for a new Berlin troupe set to open in 2004. The organization has grown into a franchise comprised of over 500 employees including nearly 100 performers and musicians.


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The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players in Maximum Ink in October 2003

The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players

by David A. Kulczyk
October 2003

The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players are one of the oddest, yet enjoyable musical units to come down the pike in a long time. Jonathon Richman’s early work, like “Ice Cream Man,” “Hey There Little Insect” and “Rockin’ Rockin’ Leprechauns” is about the only music you can compare to the TFSP. 

Formed a couple of years ago in Seattle by Jason [guitar, piano and singer], his wife Tina [projector] and seven year old daughter, Rachel on drums after Tina found and bought some old slide photos at a yard sale. The box was marked “Mountain Trip to Japan 1959 and that was what was on the film, someone’s color slide photos of a trip to Japan in 1959. Jason , who was a mild mannered struggling singer/songwriter in a city filled with aggressive and thriving singer/songwriters, put his talent to work and wrote songs around the slideshow and The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players were born.


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Anna Purnell of the Reptile Palace Orchestra on the cover of Maximum Ink in November 2003 - photo by Andrew Frey

The Reptile Palace Orchestra

by Adam Wrathkey
November 2003

The sign on the door read, “REPTILE PALACE ORCHESTRA appearing every weekend this month. Please come and enjoy their eclectic mix of traditional and original world music that rocks. Elvis + Armenia + Funkadelic + Bulgaria = RPO.”

I didn’t recognize the band name, but I decided to check it out anyway. They were already on-stage. Dancers grouped in front of the stage as the band launched into their next number, which the lovely lady singing, announced as “Kochari.” The dance floor came alive as body parts were swung to and fro. More numbers followed fusing world music and ethnic styles. One song was in Spanish, the next from Bulgaria, then another in Armenian. Then Turkish, Finnish, English, Italian, Greek, and occasionally a song in a gypsy dialect. As the band played on, I tracked down a bartender and asked him to tell me more about the band.


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David 'Honeyboy' Edwards - photo by Dave Leucinger

David “Honeyboy” Edwards

by Dave Leucinger
November 2003

“I’ve got a good mind; I don’t forget nothing, you know?” That understated self-assessment by David “Honeyboy” Edwards is characteristic of the 88-year-old blues guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter. A native of Shaw, Mississippi, Edwards retains the purist links to seminal acoustic country blues. He’s witnessed or worked with virtually every blues musician of note since the late 1920s, from Delta legends Charley Patton, Tommy Johnson, and Robert Johnson to Chicago blues icons Little Walter, Sonny Boy Williamson #2 (Aleck “Rice” Miller), and the Myers Brothers (Louis and Dave). Beyond his eyewitness accounts, however, is the Edwards’ musical retention: subtle yet captivating in a manner that appears simple, but in reality belies awareness of musical intonation and interplay.

Music was a fundamental part of the rural southern culture in the early 20th century. “We had guitars, pianos, violins, mandolins; most of the string music,” he recalled. People used to give country dances on Saturday night, and the musicians would come out and play. Through the week they would sit around the house and learn how to play guitar, and what they could do with it.”


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