580678_4303177739103_1802817379_n

Interview with The People Brothers Band [Podcast]

Positivity. Good vibes. Great people. Fun music. These are just a few things that immediately come to mind when I think of The People Brothers Band—a Madison-based “rhythm & soul” group known for their uplifting live shows. We had the pleasure of having two PBB members, Teresa and Greg, in the Murfie office recently. They had a lot of great things to say about the Midwest scene, and People Fest, which is happening this weekend in Hillsboro, Wisconsin!

Here’s a transcript of our interview, along with the Soundcloud link below for your listening pleasure.

People Brothers Band Middle of the In BetweenWho: Teresa Marie and Greg Schmitt; interviewed by Kayla Liederbach
Where: Murfie HQ, Madison, WI
When: Monday, July 20th, 2015
How: Recorded by Kayla Liederbach

Note: This interview has been edited for length and clarity. 


K: I’m here at the Murfie office with Greg and Teresa from The People Brothers Band, so big welcome.

G: Hello!

T: Hello hello, thank you for having us!

K: Yes. I’m glad you guys dig Murfie, and the concept.

G: Absolutely.

T: This is super cool. Blows my mind a little bit. More people need to know about Murfie.

K: Yes, and it’s local…slash national. But yeah, it’s a lot of fun to be part of it. And we were also just mentioning the MAMAs—Madison Area Music Awards—which were a ton of fun. You guys won top Pop/R&B Album of the Year, Middle of the in Between. So what do you guys think about the MAMA award system and everything?

T: I think every year they’re increasingly doing way cooler things, and this year they definitely put on a show. And I really encourage the musicians in Madison to get out and know more about it, because I think that’s what it lacks, is us being more involved in it. But it’s a really cool way to get recognition and to be appreciated.

G: I think it’s a really cool thing because every time, every year you get to see all these cool new bands. We all run in different circles, and it’s finally cool to see all these people come together. It’s fun for me because when I get to go in and vote, all of a sudden you get to listen to these bands that, you see their names in The Isthmus but you don’t always get to go out to the shows, because you’re playing on the weekends. So it’s fun, because it kind of like gives you a good reason to check out all these great bands. And then it’s fun because it kind of gets everybody in one place, you get to see all these different people that you didn’t know about.

K: I would agree with that 100%. And its enough rotation every year to keep it interesting. Some people are repeat winners but it’s good to see it cycle through like that. During your speech Teresa you had a message to musicians, telling them they had the opportunity to spread positivity through doing this. I thought that was great, can you elaborate on that a little bit?

T: Absolutely, that’s really cool that you even…that means a lot! I guess at the end of the day, I think most people are doing music for the love of it, and the way that you feel when you’re playing music, when you’re doing music, when the people are watching you the way they’re receiving it—if you could just spread that feeling throughout the community for other things. And I think that we can, I think that when you feel that kind of passion and that kind of love coming from people, you can’t help but want to do good things with it. That’s what we do at People Fest, I know that.

K: Yes, tell me about People Fest!

T: August 6th, 7th and 8th. And I will say more than once that it’s not just some of the most fun you’re gonna have this summer, it’s some of the best memories you can make in your life. And that’s a true story. There’s so much love flowing through those driftless hills, it doesn’t make any sense.

481065_556687791009906_323876588_nK: Love it. What town is it in?

G: Hillsboro, Wisconsin. It’s over by Wildcat Mountain. It’s an awesome drive out there, it’s on 300 acres of amazing land out there. We’ve got horses running around…

T: Alpacas…

G: We’ve got a couple llamas and a miniature donkey. And it’s all family friendly. We’ve got 53 bands playing.

T: Three stages, camping, family camping.

Continue reading

Sounds Like Texas: The Best of the Lone Star State

We know everything is bigger in Texas, but is the music better? This week, check out reviews of three albums by The Lone Star State’s greatest!

PearlJanis Joplin
Pearl

Listening to Pearl feels a bit heavy, and there’s certainly reason for that: Janis Joplin’s last, the album was recorded near the very end of her life. After succumbing to an overdose at 27, she would never live to see it finished and released. Her tragic ending was a symbol of how she lived: erratically, but remarkably—an incredible voice and presence that belonged to a very troubled woman. Pearl is both a testament to her incredible talent and a hint of what could have been.

One of the album’s greatest strengths is Full Tilt Boogie, the backup band that’s with her through every track. Together with Janis’ big voice, they create a sound that lets her rock, but keeps her refined and smooth. She doesn’t overpower them, nor they her—it’s a harmonious combination. On tracks like “Cry Baby”, Janis is her full, belt-y self, brought down to earth with Full Tilt Boogie’s influence.

This album has an organization to it that other Joplin records lack, and it’s a refreshing and new take on her music. Previous albums like Cheap Thrills have essentially lacked structure; while letting Joplin’s trademark rawness show is great, the extra guidance in these songs lets her shine in a different way. Her intensity is kept in check just enough to let the songs fully develop, but not so much that she never has her big moment. This album has taken an already incredible talent and refined it into something that much more listenable.

Don’t Miss Tracks: “Cry Baby”, “Mercedes Benz”

 

370176-largeLos Lonely Boys
Los Lonely Boys

Los Lonely Boys are certainly true to their Texas roots—they call their musical style “Texas Rock n’ Roll”, a fusion of rock, soul, country, blues and Tejano. A group of three brothers, the band is forging those influences into a brand-new and extremely inspired sound. To cement their status as a true Texan band, the group recorded this album at Willie Nelson’s Pedernales recording studio.

At the heart of this album is their incredible music talent and creativity. Rather than making the album hard to follow, the group’s numerous musical influences instead work their way into a track list that is incredible varied and creative, yet cohesive. That variety turns out to be their greatest strength on Los Lonely Boys: “Crazy Dreams” is a masterpiece of guitar riffs, while “Dime Mi Amor” shifts effortlessly into a Latin-rock structure that echoes Carlos Santana.

Variety isn’t these brothers’ only talent, however: this album shines on instrumentals, vocals and songwriting. Rather than sticking to their Texas roots, their talent elevates them to what feels like a new genre: their songs are crafted with incredible nuance; they find a place in both your heart and your mind. Whether it becomes the soundtrack to your summer party or a quiet at-home listening session, this album deserves a place in any music collection.

Don’t Miss Tracks: “Crazy Dreams”, “Senorita”

 

67224-largeGeorge Strait
Troubadour

It’s impossible to write a compilation of Texas music without at least one country album, and there is no country star more worthy of such a spot than the King of Country: George Strait. Texan-born, George Strait has released dozens of albums and had dozens of No. 1 hits. Twang is a testament to his signature sound and the solidifying of his status as country’s music supreme ruler.

A true Texas star, Strait’s collection not only contains nary a bad album, but manages to stay true to his Texas sound. After releasing so many albums, Strait still manages to find a new sound on Troubadour. The album finds him looking introspectively, creating a soft, mellow sound that is calm and soothing without ever slipping into melodramatic or depressing. On this album, he certainly sounds like a Troubadour—a singer who has had a long and varied career, but always manages to emerge that much better.

It would be easy to mistake Troubadour’s 12 songs for simple tracks, but his sound and songwriting prove otherwise. He’s enlisted a lot of outside songwriting help here, including Buddy Cannon and Monty Holmes, but the songs weave together into a calming, cohesive collection. Despite the number of people involved, the album keeps its attitude going all the way through: it’s a subdued, intimate album that sounds like the soundtrack to events you’ll want to remember. Strait stays true to his Texas roots for a reason: why mix it up when you do it so well?

Don’t Miss Tracks: “River of Love”, “It Was Me”

 

Shopkeep of the Week

hbebbjaf

We know him as “One Dollar Albums“, but it’s time to meet the man behind the username: Jordan!

Back in 2011, Jordan signed up for Murfie, and since then he’s sent over 1200 discs from good ol’ Montana to Madison. He successfully markets his shop via facebook and twitter.

Murfie: How did you originally learn about Murfie?
Jordan: I heard the piece about Murfie on NPR’s “Weekend Edition”.

M: When did you purchase your first CD? What was it?
J: It was Another Level by Blackstreet. No diggity.

M: How many CDs do you own (or did you own at your peak)?
J: I’ve sold a few hundred, and I invested the funds in additional inventory for my store. The most I’ve had at once is about 850.

M: How tall are you?
J: 5’11”

M: Tell us about your musical tastes.
J: Post-punk/Manchester bands like The Smiths and Joy Division are my favorites, but I also love Riot Grrl bands of the 90’s, hip hop, and I have a lifelong obsession with David Bowie. I also love anything that’s fun. I love to flip on the radio and hear a jam by Rihanna or Ke$ha.

M: What can folks expect to find in your store (if different than the above)?
J: My goal with the store is to have good albums by artists you’ve heard of all priced at $1. It has a little bit of everything, from Ricky Martin to The Doors to Black Sabbath to Garth Brooks.

M: If you could meet any musician or band in person, who would it be and why?
J: I would meet Morrissey to see if he’s really like that in person. He can’t be, can he?

M: What is your favorite album at the moment?
J: So by Peter Gabriel.

M: What do you plan to do with the millions of dollars you’re making from your Murfie shop?
J: Ha! I’m not making millions, but I am coming out ahead. I got involved because I thought it was a neat project, and I liked the recycling element. I haven’t put a lot of thought into what I will do with the money. Maybe I will get a Sonos player.

M: Which Beatle was your favorite?
J: Billy Shears.

Check out Jordan’s shop on Murfie!
“One Dollar Albums” on Facebook: www.facebook.com/onedollaralbums
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/1dollaralbums

Shopkeep of the Week is a weekly feature that focuses on our most interesting Murfie shopkeepers. These are music lovers like you who have sold hundreds of pre-loved CDs on Murfie and have hundreds more at the ready to please your ears! If you’d like your Murfie Shop to be featured, or if you’d like to nominate a shop to be featured, please e-mail us at info@murfie.com and let us know.

Shopkeep of the Week

jeff pic

In early 2011, JP’s CD collection took a journey from the warm climes of New Mexico to the waning winter of Wisconsin. Since then he has sold hundreds of his pre-loved CDs on Murfie and has over 200 more listed for sale.

JP’s musical tastes run in quite a few directions, and his CD collection numbered about 1,200 discs at its peak! He’s a big Motown guy. He’s also an avid fan of numerous singer-songwriters like Van Morrison, Dylan, Tom Waits, and Jim Croce. You’ll also find The Beatles, Wilco, Mumford and Sons, and The Allman Brothers Band sprinkled throughout his musical sundae—along with a few scoops of Kanye West, Miles Davis, and Oasis —all topped off with a Sinatra cherry! With that said, he admits that there are some stinkers in the collection too, but hey, we all make mistakes sometimes! :-)

MURFIE: When did you purchase your first CD? What was it?
JP: I think about 1986 —Peter Gabriel’s “So.”

M: What do you plan to do with the millions of dollars you’re making from your Murfie shop?
J: Buy an electric toothbrush.

M: Favorite Beatle?
J: Lennon —natch.

Check out JP’s collection on Murfie and find yourself a deal!

Shopkeep of the Week is a weekly feature that focuses on our most interesting Murfie shopkeepers. These are music lovers like you who have sold hundreds of pre-loved CDs on Murfie and have hundreds more at the ready to please your ears! If you’d like your Murfie Shop to be featured, or if you’d like to nominate a shop to be featured, please e-mail us at info@murfie.com and let us know.

Logo w Text (Color)

Murfie Staffers = Awards FINALISTS! (Time for us to show off a lot.)

***

Hopefully you caught our last article about all the fabulously talented staffers here at Murfie who held nominations for the 2013 Madison Area Music Awards (MAMAs)! If not, here’s a refresher: [March 9th article]

Well, the votes have been counted…and the FINAL nominees for the 2013 MAMAs have been announced!!! Congrats to these Murfie staffers who have made it to the final round:

Lovely Socialite Mrs. Thomas W. Phipps – Best Jazz Album (Registers Her Delight) & Best Jazz Performer
Live on U Dub – Various Artists – Best Compilation Album
Kayla Kush – Best DJ
Corey Murphy – Best Brass Instrumentalist

First of all, Woo-hoooooo!

Secondly, here’s one last round of voting to participate in—and thanks so much to everyone who voted last time! To vote in the final round, you can check out The Madison Area Music Association’s website, www.themamas.org. Voting ends on May 17th. The MAMAs exist not only to celebrate Madison’s local music scene, but also to raise funds for youth music programs in the area. How sweet is that?!

Good luck, Murfie staffers! We’re looking forward to the awards show on June 23rd at The Capitol Theater in Madison!

***