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7/27/2011

The Logan Square Dance

Tangleweed's 4th CD, Please Punch Richard for Me

Tangleweed's 4th CD, Please Punch Richard for Me

Here’s another sneak peek at our forthcoming CD, Please Punch Richard for Me. We’ll be celebrating with a CD release show at The Old Town School of Folk Music this Friday, July 29th.

In the mean time, you can enjoy this ditty from the CD. It’s a medley of original and trad tunes mashed together into something we call the Logan Square Dance, in honor of our home neighborhood in Chicago. You can download the tune as an MP3, or use the little Flash dealie below to stream it.

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There are more MP3 downloads on our Music page.

2/20/2011

Pick Poor Robin Clean reconsidered

By Kenneth Rainey. Filed under: Audio, TweedBlog. Tags: ,

One of my favorite songs from our third CD is our cover of the old raggy blues tune Pick Poor Robin Clean. Luke Jordan and Geeshie Wiley each recorded fantastic versions of it, Jordan in 1927 for Victor, Wiley in 1931 for Paramount.

The song’s lyrics were long a puzzle to me. I had long assumed that it was a song about desperate poverty. The first verse seemed to suggest a person driven to desperate measures:

You Gotta pick poor robin clean
Pick poor robin clean
I picked the head, I picked the feet
I woulda picked the body but it wasn’t fit to eat
You gotta pick poor robin clean
Pick poor robin clean
I’ll be satisfied, having your family

I’ve recently been reading Stephen Calt’s interesting Barrelhouse Words: A Blues Dialect Dictionary, and he has a different interpretation: the song is about robbing the destitute:

[Poor robin is,] most likely, a ragged person, from the 19-century colloquialism ragged robin. In the above song, the subject is left penniless by a crooked gambler, clean signifying completely without funds in criminal slang, and to clean, to rob one of everything of value.

Here’s our version, and you can see if you agree with Calt’s interpretation.

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2/15/2011

Sneak peek at the new CD

A sneak preview of our new CD, Please Punch Richard For Me is up for your listening pleasure, a little number called Cold Cold Ground. Check out the music player below to hear it, or head over to our music page to listen.

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The record is mixed and mastered, and Tony Nuccio is cranking away at the artwork. We should have a release date to announce soon.

9/20/2010

Tangleweed on the You, Me, Them, Everybody podcast

By Kenneth Rainey. Filed under: Audio, TweedBlog. Tags:

Our appearance on the You, Me, Them, Everybody podcast is online for your downloading pleasure:

http://www.youmethemeverybody.com/2010/09/16/episode-104-live-at-the-hungry-brain-with-nell-taylor-michael-palascak-and-tangleweed/

Other guests on the episode are Nell Taylor from the Chicago Underground Library, and the very funny Michael Palascak.  We do a bunch of songs live at the end, with Jon Williams filling in for Scott on the guitar.

3/16/2010

Happy almost St. Patrick’s Day

As we prepare for our special St. Patrick’s Day show tomorrow night at Lizard’s Liquid Lounge, we thought it proper to share a wee bit of our Irish repertoire with you all. The tune is Whiskey in the Jar, originally written by Metallica, and later covered by the Clancy Brothers and the Dubliners*.

The recording comes from a practice recording made last year in my basement. Ryan was out of town, so it’s just Billy, Paul, Scott, and me.

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*I may be slightly off on the chronology.

2/24/2010

Video of Tangleweed’s wax cylinder recording session

Tangleweed had a chance to record a tune on an early 20th century Edison wax cylinder recording rig. Martin Fisher, audio archivist at Middle Tennessee State University, set up the acoustic recording studio at last week’s Folk Alliance conference in Memphis

This being a pre-electric recording studio, the band was gathered around a single horn, which was connected directly to a lathe that etched the sounds into a blank wax cylinder. Each cylinder blank could hold two minutes, so we had to tweak the arrangement and push the tempo a bit to get it in under the maximum time. We recorded two takes. It’s all live to mono, so there’s no ‘fixing in the mix’, as it were.

The tune is a Tangleweed medley called ‘The Logan Square Dance’.

We will have audio of the cylinder itself soon.

2/21/2010

One of Tangleweed’s Folk Alliance sets available for download

By Kenneth Rainey. Filed under: Audio, TweedBlog. Tags: ,

One of Tangleweed’s sets at the 2010 Folk Alliance  Conference in Memphis is available for download. One of our first sets was at the Steam Powered Preservation Society, who had a multi-mic recording setup for capturing the performances.

You can download it here as a zip file:

http://thespps.org/mp3s/partners/sppsshowcases/fa2010/mp3/tangleweed2010-02-18.mp3f.zip

8/6/2009

Cherokee Shuffle live at Fitzgerald’s

This is the maiden voyage of our version of the warhorse fiddle tune Cherokee Shuffle, from last week’s show at Fitzgerald’s in Berwyn. You can download the whole show at Archive.org.

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We tried to mix up the textures and dynamics to keep it interesting. We also play the ‘A’ strain as a round at the end.

Thanks to Joe Steffen for recording the show and making it available on the interwebs.