Sunday, November 29, 2009


Sunday, November 29, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Anala by The King Khan & BBQ Show
Bow Down and Die by The Almighty Defenders
Diet Pill by L7
Caught With the Meat in Your Mouth by The Dead Boys
Monk Chant by The Monks
You Don't Know by The Fleshtones
Cannibal Girls by The Hydes
I Want Love and Affection, Not the House of Correction by Barrence Whitfield
She Wants to Sell My Monkey by Tav Falco

Goddamn Sounds Good by Bob Log III
Let's Have a Party by King Automatic
I Can Only Give You Everything by Them
Thrill Me by Three Bad Jacks
Devil Smile by Nekromantix
Too Much Fun by The Sons of Hercules
Slide by Tin Huey

I'm Broke by Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears
Rapping With Lee by Lee Fields
Stupidity by The Detroit Cobras
The Joker by Bob Bunny
Jungle Talk (I Want Some of That) by Shane Kai Ray
Chicken Papa by The Preachers
Stivali E Colbacco by Gogol Bordello
Polka Dancer by Brave Combo
Son of a Gun by The Polkaholics

Queen Anne by Buick MacKane
Laredo (Small Dark Something) by Jon Dee Graham
The Trip by Donovan
Ode to Billy Joe/Hip Hug Her by Wiley & The Checkmates
Gee I Really Love You by Heavy Trash
Up Above My Head by Sharon Jones, Billy Rivers & The Angelic Voices of Faith
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, November 28, 2009


Here's some Christmas cheer on video.

I'd been wary of the Bob Dylan Christmas album, but I've gotta admit, I get a kick out of this video. (Thanks, Stuart and Al)

And yes, Dylan admits he got the arrangement from Brave Combo, who's been doing this song for years. (from an interview with Street News Service)

BF: MUST BE SANTA is a real jumping polka. Did you hear a lot of polka bands growing up?
BD: Yeah, I heard a few.
BF: I never heard that song before. Where did you hear it?
BD: I first heard that song years ago on one of those “Sing Along with Mitch” records. But this version comes from a band called Brave Combo. Somebody sent their record to us for our radio show. They’re a regional band out of Texas that takes regular songs and changes the way you think about them. You oughta hear their version of Hey Jude.
Come to think of this, I played the Brave Combo version on last year's Big Enchilada Christmas Podcast.

Friday, November 27, 2009


Friday, November 27, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Go Cat Go by J.P. McDermott & Western Bop
Tonight She Hits the Honkey Tonks by Justin Trevino
Walmart Killed the Country Store by Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band
I Turn to the Wine by Justin Trevino
Complicated Dance by The Electric Rag Band
It's the Law by Bob Log III
Heaven's Just a Sin Away by John Fogerty
Bring it on In the House by Stan Ridgway & Pietra Wexstun
High by Zeno Tornado & The Boney Google Brothers
I'm a One-Woman Man by The Hindu Love Gods
Hush Money by The Collins Kids

Voodoo Woman by Nancy Apple
Honky Tonk Stardust Cowboy by Bill Hearne
Stealth Cowboy by The Legendary Stardust Cowboy
Plastic Love by The Riptones
Hanging Dog by Jacques & The Shakey Boys
Chauffeur by Rosie Flores & The Pine Valley Cosmonauts
I Find You're Cheatin' on Me by Hank Thompson
All Bound Down by Haywood County Ramblers

I Dreamed of a Hillbilly Heaven by Eddie Dean
Whoa Mule by Roy Acuff
Evenin' Breeze by Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks
Pan American by Artie Hill & The Long Gone Daddies
Don't Drop Out by Dolly Parton
Haggard Like I've Never Been Before by Merle Haggard
Get Them Pretty Girls by The Bad Livers
The Swimming Song by John Carter Cash
Honky Tonk Gal by The Starline Rhythm Boys

Sweet Rosie Jones by Buck Owens
Phases & Stages (Theme)/Walkin' by Willie Nelson
Ring O' Roses by The Mekons
One Way Ticket Down by Guy Clark
Servants' Entrance by Amanda Pearcy
Forbidden Love by Billy Kaundart
Marie by Leon Redbone
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Thursday, November 26, 2009


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 27, 2009

It’s a good thing that the King Khan & BBQ Show isn’t as famous as the Beatles and that President Obama probably doesn’t hate and fear Arish “King” Khan as much as President Nixon hated and feared John Lennon.

Improbable as this comparison is, I couldn’t help but recall Lennon’s tribulations when the Nixon administration tried to get him deported as an “undesirable alien” because of a drug bust. What prompted this memory was Khan’s arrest with his road manager, Kristin Klein, in Kentucky earlier this month on charges of possession of psychedelic mushrooms.

The arrest of Khan, a Canadian citizen, occurred on the road between the band’s gigs promoting its new album, Invisible Girl. 

Here’s the group’s official statement on Nov. 17, via Pitchfork:

“On November 16, 2009 Kristin Klein entered a guilty plea to 2nd degree possession of a controlled substance in Christian County, Kentucky. Ms. Klein was driving a rental vehicle that was randomly stopped at a safety checkpoint. Officers located a controlled substance in the cab of the vehicle. Ms. Klein was unaware of the contraband and the validity of her license was indeterminable at time of arrest. Under KY law a driver of a vehicle is responsible for its contents. Therefore, Ms. Klein entered a guilty plea and is scheduled to appear on April 2, 2010, to provide proof of her valid license.”

The Kentucky New Era newspaper reported that Khan and two others with the KK & BBQ entourage “were allowed to enter a pretrial diversionary agreement. The drug possession charge against each of them will be dropped if they stay out of trouble for a year, said [Khan’s local lawyer Rick] Boling. They were ordered to pay court costs.”

There were fears throughout Khan fandom that this bust would be a terrible chapter in the war on drugs — being arrested in Christian County, Kentucky, for Pete’s sake! As the River Front Times’ St. Louis Music blog put it, “Keep in mind, it’s not hard to imagine a scenario where cops in a tiny Kentucky town unfairly hassle a crazy looking Indian man wearing a huge shark-tooth necklace.”

But it looks like the judge was pretty lenient, almost more concerned about the driver’s license than he was the mushrooms. Of course, the catch is that Khan has to stay out of trouble for a year. That could be the real trial.

While Khan is also known for his soul revue The Shrines (and less so for The Tandoori Knights, another two-man band, and the garage/punk/lo-fi/gospel supergroup The Almighty Defenders, whose self-titled album I reviewed here a few weeks ago), some of his finest work is with Mark Sultan. Sultan, aka BBQ, is another Canadian, who was Khan’s bandmate in a Montreal band, the Spaceshits.

You might think of two-man guitar/drums groups in terms of stripped-down blues bashers like Flat Duo Jets and the early White Stripes. There’s certainly that element at work in KK & BBQ.

But what distinguishes this dynamic duo is its anchor in raw doo-wop. The basic sound, therefore, is punk-rock roar, embellished by some Ruben & The Jets/Sha Na Na/rama-lama-ding-dong silliness but based on some seriously pretty melodies and occasional sweet harmonies.

It’s all there in the opening cut, “Anala,” on which Khan handles the lead vocals. It wouldn’t be hard imagining The Penguins or The Moonglows singing this.

This is followed by the title cut, which features a folk-rock guitar that sounds inspired by The Beatles’ “Ticket to Ride” or The Searchers’ “When You Walk in the Room.”

But my favorites are the ones on which Sultan’s high voice soars, such as “I’ll Be Loving You” and “Tryin’.” Sometimes Sultan sounds like a more ragged Sam Cooke — or, cynics might say, a hipster version of Steve Perry of Journey. Whatever, the boy can sing.

The most interesting Sultan-led song on Invisible Girl is “Third Avenue.” It starts out and ends as a seriously greasy doo-wopper, but it’s got a strange psychedelic freak-out section featuring guitar and organ. Unfortunately the song that’s getting the most attention is “Tastebuds,” which is obscene, juvenile — and annoyingly catchy. Looks like maybe the two are trying to expand their fan base by becoming fratboy faves.

I just hope they weren’t blasting this on the car stereo when the cops stopped them in Kentucky.

Also recommended:

* My Shit is Perfect by Bob Log III. If a two-man band is just too crowded for you, check out one of the most fun one-man bands out there — and “out there” is a good description — Mr. Log’s music might be for you.

This is just good down-home stomping blues with Log’s trademark distorted vocals (he performs in a motorcycle helmet) and some scattered electronic embellishments. Log was once part of the Arizona-based blues/noise duo called Doo-Rag back in the mid-’90s.

Log’s basic sound on this album is a funky, clunky hoedown. But it’s obvious that Log actually knows how to pick, as he shows every so often — including with the speedy acoustic guitar workout on the instrumental “Bucktooth Potato.”

My favorite here is “Manipulate Your Figments.” It’s one of the best electronically mutated blues tunes I’ve heard in a while.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


If you're not too bloated from Thanksgiving dinner, there's a cool psychobilly band playing in Evangelos' basement -- a performing space currently known as The Underground -- that night.

Three Bad Jacks is a Los Angeles based trio. I saw them on the 4th of July at the Hootenanny Festival in Irvine and they rocked.

Thursday's show starts at 9 p.m. and the cover is a mere $5.

A promoter named Johnny Pink has started putting on shows in The Underground. Earlier this month he had The Koffin Kats, another psychobilly bunch. On Dec. 8 a band called Jon Wayne & The Pain will play there, with local blues dudes Gary Farmer & The Troublemakers opening.

Nice to see another venue opening up like this and nice to see this space in particular being used again. I think the last show I saw down in Evangelos' basement was a trick pool shot exhibition by a guy called Fast Eddie whose best trick of the nigth was making a lot of people in the audience believe his claim that he was the inspiration for the Paul Newman character in The Hustler.

And for some completely different kind of music, I just got a last-minute email about a show happening tonight (Wednesday) at High Mayhem, 2811 Siler Lane (at Siler Road).

Tristan Perich wrote, "I'm a New York-based composer, lugging a harpsichord around the country and playing a new piece for it with low-fi 1-bit electronics (an extension of 1-Bit Music, my circuit-in-a-cd-case album from a few years ago). Lesley Flanigan performs on her own hand-built speaker feedback instruments, which generate tones that she layers on top of her own voice."

A trip-hop group from Cincinnati called Evolve also is on the bill

I haven't heard them before, but it's High Mayhem, so it's bound to be interesting.

Suggested price is $10. Show starts at 9 p.m.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Sunday, November 22, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
November/Weapon by The Rockin' Guys
Tiki Man by Deadbolt
Low Budget Life by J.J. & The Real Jerks
I Just Dropped in to See What Condition My Condition Was in by Mojo Nixon
Misunderstood by The Sons of Hercules
I'll Sleep When I'm Dead by Warren Zevon
Bad Boy by Larry Williams

It's a Cadillac by Three Bad Jacks
Ghost Rider by Allen Vega
Shout Bama Lama by Detoit Cobras
Little Latin Lupe Lu by The Strawberry Zots
Moodswings by King Automatic
Kukamonga Boogaloo by King Khan & The Shrines
Mojo Workout by King Salami & The Cumberland 3
Let Them Knock by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

City of Refuge by Alvin Youngblood Hart
Christ is Everthing by The Soul Stirrers
The Holy Ghost is Here by Rev. Milton Brunson
I'm Waiting for Jesus by The Dixie Hummingbirds
15 Rounds for Jesus by Sister Wynona Carr
Pray On by The Staples Singers
Jordan River by Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens
Three Little Fishes, Five Loaves of Bread by Sister Rosetta Tharpe
I'm on My Way by Mahalia Jackson
Don't You Ever Let Nobody Drag Yo' Spirit Down by Linda Tillery & The Cultural Heritage Choir with Wilson Pickett & Eric Bibb

Ultimate by Gogol Bordello
Tip My Canoe by Dengue Fever
Always Horses Coming by Giant Sand
The Comb by Tin Huey featuring Patty Donahue
Circus by Tom Waits
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis




Here it is, a little taste of Hillbilly Heaven right here on Earth! Spinning the righteous country sounds he loves to play on The Santa Fe Opry on KSFR, Steve Terrell presents songs by The Delmore Brothers, The Maddox Brothers & Rose, Charlie Poole, The Hoosier Hotshots plus some mutated hillbilly sounds from Bob Log III, T. Tex Edwards, The Watzloves and more!

CLICK HERE to download the podcast. (To save it, right click on the link and select "Save Target As.")

Or better yet, stop messing around and CLICK HERE to subscribe to my podcasts and HERE to directly subscribe on iTunes.

You can play it on the little feedplayer below:

Here's the playlist

(Background music: Rambler's Stomp by Doug Bine & His Dixie Ramblers)
Sally Let Your Bangs Hang Down by The Maddox Brothers & Rose
Knot Hole by Robbie Fulks
The One You Slip Around With by Skeeter Davis
Down to My Last Dime by Johnny Paycheck
Dolores by T. Tex Edwards & Out on Parole
Rock 'n' Roll Killed My Mother by The Hi-Fi Guys
Five Against One by Al Duvall

(Background Music: Steel Guitar Rag by The Pine Valley Cosmonauts)
Catch Me a Possum by The Watzloves
Piano Bill by The Jet Girls
Settin' the Woods On Fire by Bob Log III
Still Drunk, Still Crazy, Still Blue by Scott H. Biram
Moving Day in Jungle Town by The Hoosier Hotshots

(Background Music: 3rd Stone From the Sun by Psychograss)
Monkey on a String by Charlie Poole
All Go Hungry Hash House by Norman Blake
Hesitation Blues by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
I'm The Man Who Rode the Mule Around the World by Loudon Wainwright III

(Background Music: Flop-eared Mule by The Highlanders)
Arkansas Hard Luck Blues by Lonnie Glosson
A Better Range is Home by The Delmore Brothers
Goodnight Irene by Wayne & Gina Hancock

The official Big Enchilada Web Site with my podcast jukebox and all the shows is HERE.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Friday, November 20, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Blackland Farmer by Sleepy LaBeef
Louisiana Blues by Wayne Hancock
Stuff You Gotta Watch by Levon Helm
Moody River by John Fogerty
Custer by Johnny Cash
Mr. Custer Stomp by The Scouts
Stripper Song by Jacques & The Shakey Boys
Pirate Radio by Mojo Nixon

Going Down by The Electric Rag Band
Born Again Again by The Legendary Shack Shakers
Nine Pound Hammer by The Waco Brothers
Your Cousin's on Cops by Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band
Rodeo Show by Quarter Mile Combo
Bucktooth Potato by Bob Log III
Cowboy Boots by The Backsliders
Selling the jelly by The Noah Lewis Jug Band
Sidewalks of Chicago by The Sundowners

Best Liquor Store by The Hickoids
I Ain't Got You by Rosie Flores & The Pine Valley Cosmonauts
Honky Tonk Maniac From Mars by Jason Ringwald with Hamell on Trial
Cold Cold Ground by The Grevious Angels
Get Behind the Mule by Tom Waits
Left Hand Cigarette Blues by Trailer Bride
Chain Gang by Fred Eaglesmith

Darling My Darling by The Handsome Family
Goin' on Down to the BBQ by Drywall
He'll Have to Go by Tav Falco
Route 41 by Gary Gorrence
It Won't Be Long (And I'll Be Hating You) by Rex Hobart & The Misery Boys
National Weed Grower's Association by Michael Hurley
Desert Rose by Chris Hillman
Man About Town by Tony Gillyson

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list


No, he's not in jail -- as far as I know. He's offering free downloads, eight full songs to be exact, 38 minutes worth of music from his new live album Glitter and Doom, to be released next week.

I just downloaded it and it's sounding great. Check out the groovy widget below:

Also, I might have plugged this a few months ago, but a free two hour podcast of a 2008 Waits concert in Atlanta is available from NPR. CLICK HERE

True story: A couple of days ago my son and I were in the car listening to my iPod on shuffle mode. A Waits song came on. My son's pretty hip (He has Rev. Beat-Man's "Jesus Christ Twist" on his MySpace page.) But he started grumbling about the Waits song.

"You don't like Tom Waits," I asked disapprovingly.

"No," he said. "He always sounds like a hobo yelling at me."

He has a point, but I still love Waits.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 20, 2009

Here are a couple of recent albums from classic rockers from influential bands — Creedence Clearwater Revival and The Band — whose music was always an extension of American roots music — blues, R & B, rockabilly, gospel, and straight-up hillbilly sounds.

Even though their latest works won’t be and shouldn’t be considered breakthroughs or high-water marks of either artists’ career, John Fogerty’s The Blue Ridge Rangers Rides Again and Levon Helm’s Electric Dirt are records that show each artist remaining true to his muse. And both albums are full of good-time, honky-tonkin’ fun.

First, the Fogerty album: When Creedence — for my money, the best singles-oriented band of the late ’60s — crumbled in the early-’70s, Fogerty regrouped by degrouping. That is, he went into the studio basically as a one-man band, The Blue Ridge Rangers, playing all the instruments himself on a salute to his favorite country and bluegrass music.

The result was an album called The Blue Ridge Rangers, which featured covers: Hank Williams’ “Jambalaya (On the Bayou)”; “Today I Started Loving You Again” by Merle Haggard; Jimmie Rodgers’ “California Blues (Blue Yodel #4)”; George Jones’ “She Thinks I Still Care”; “I Ain’t Never” by Mel Tillis; and others. That he did not release the album under his own name could be one reason why sales tanked and the record was largely forgotten. (Historical footnote: In that same golden year of 1973, rocker Leon Russell released Hank Wilson’s Back — consisting of country and bluegrass covers and released under a pseudonym. For some reason, Hank Wilson got far more attention than Fogerty’s record did.)

I’m not sure what prompted Fogerty to revive The Blue Ridge Rangers after 36 years — except, perhaps, that he still loves this music. This time, however, he hired other musicians to handle fiddle, steel, drums, bass, mandolin, background vocals, and whatever was needed. And, for better or for worse, he even brought in some superstar guest vocalists.

The new Rangers tackle some of the classics — Ray Price’s “Fallin’, Fallin’, Fallin’” and “I’ll Be There,” which, for the record, is my favorite song on this album; Buck Owens’ “I Don’t Care (Just As Long As You Love Me)”; the Everly Brothers’ “When Will I Be Loved,” a spirited duet with Bruce Springsteen; and “Heaven’s Just a Sin Away” by the near-forgotten ’70s country duo The Kendalls.

One of the strangest tunes here is “Moody River,” a dark tale of suicide and betrayal written and originally recorded by a rockabilly dude named Gary Bruce (released under the name Chase Webster) but best known in the early ’60s version by Pat Boone (!). And there’s a cool countrified take on Jumpin’ Gene Simmons’ R & B novelty song “Haunted House.” This is fun, though my favorite remains the one by Sam the Sham & The Pharaohs.

For this album, Fogerty turned to several singer-songwriters of the ’70s. There’s a solid bluegrassy take on John Prine’s “Paradise,” and as far as “Back Home Again” goes, let’s just say this version is better than John Denver’s.

But the Denver song isn’t the worst of it. That would be Rick Nelson’s hit “Garden Party.” The song was a self-pitying account of Nelson getting booed at a 1971 rock ’n’ roll revival show at Madison Square Garden. It’s not a bad song, and I always love Tom Brumley’s steel guitar. But I’m not sure what drove me nuts more, the “oblique” but obvious lyrics (“Yoko brought her walrus” — was that secret code or something?) or the pop-psych Me Generation refrain, “You can’t please everyone, so you’ve got to please yourself.”

To add insult to injury, Fogerty brings in two members of the smarmiest band in the world, The Eagles — not only for background vocals but to sing lead on a couple of verses. I hope they’re all pleased with themselves.

But there’s another early-’70s countryish pop hit on which Fogerty shines. That’s Delaney & Bonnie’s “Never Ending Song of Love.” With Jodie Kennedy and Herb Pederson singing background, Greg Leisz on steel, and Jason Mowery on fiddle, it’s country music at its best.

As for the Helm album, when I first heard he was doing a record called Electric Dirt, I was afraid it might have versions of the songs from his previous record, Dirt Farmer, done with psychedelic wah-wah guitars and over-miked drums. Fortunately, my fear was for naught.

This album, like Fogerty’s, consists mostly of down-home cover tunes — in a sound remaining true to The Band.

There are fewer traditional folk numbers than there were on Dirt Farmer. Helm branches out with a couple of Muddy Waters songs (“Stuff You Gotta Watch” and “You Can’t Lose What You Ain’t Never Had”); a cool, clunky Grateful Dead tune (“Tennessee Jed”); and a cover of “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free,” a song best known in the Nina Simone version, here featuring some funky New Orleans horns arranged by Allen Toussaint, an old ally of The Band.

Helm does a tasty cover of Randy Newman’s “Kingfish,” again aided by Toussaint. But without the context found in Newman’s Good Old Boys album, in which the character of Louisiana Gov. Huey Long is a major theme, listeners unfamiliar with the song might wonder why Helm seems to hate the “Frenchmen” in New Orleans.

But my favorite on this album is the Pops Staples gospel song “Move Along Train.” Helms’ daughter Amy plays the role of Pops’ daughter Mavis.

American music doesn’t get much finer.

Friday, November 13, 2009


Friday, November 13, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Jesus is God's Atomic Bomb by The Swan Silvertones
Boogie Woogie Country Girl by Sleepy La Beef
Shake Shake by The Bluetones
I'll Be There by John Fogerty
Wrecking Ball by Quarter Mile Combo
This Little Girl's Gone Rockin' by Rosie Flores & The Pine Valley Cosmonauts
Big Ol' White Boys by Terry Allen
I'm Here To Collect by Nancy Apple
People Are Sleeping Dreaming of Cheese by Cornell Hur Band featuring Blackie White

June Bugs by The Handsome Family
Liquor Store by The Meat Purveyors
Sinner by Young Edward
Out Behind the Barn by Little Jimmie Dickens
The Deal by Loudon Wainwright III
Cold Hard Facts of Life by Porter Wagoner
Daddy's Moonshine by Dolly Parton
Ghost Riders in the Sky by Lorne Green

Stupid Cupid by Patsy Cline
I Chickened Out by The Breakers
Teen Queen by Ferris Coffey
Peggy by Eric Hisaw
Lonesome, Ornery & Mean by Shannon McNally
Change Game by Dale Hawkins
The Edge of Night by Gary Gorrence
Nighttime Ramblin' Man by Hank Williams III

We Reserve the Right to Refuse Service to You by Kinky Friedman & His Texas Jewboys
Tramp on Your Street by Billy Joe Shaver
Underneath the Stars by Peter Case with Carlos Guitarlos
Floating Bridge by Sleepy John Estes
Is This My Happy Home by Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks
Move Along Train by Levon Helm
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list


Here's a little weekend entertainment I'm stealing from Mike at Thumbin' Sleazoid Cinema Blog, who got it from Lo-Fi Saint Louis -- which has several live Biram videos plus performances from the likes of King Khan & BBQ, Bob Logg III, Davila 666 and even Blowfly!

Watch this and read my review of Biram's latest album Something's Wrong/Lost Forever from a few months ago.


P.S. Don't forget, Sleazoid Cinema's Mike Ashcraft and I appear on the latest RadiOblivion podcast.


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 13, 2009

Here's the perfect introduction to Gogol Bordello for those who have not been initiated to the wild joys of this international troupe — our impoverished state is one of the few places in the world in which Gogol has never played, and that's a whole lot of people. (In recent weeks the band has played Colorado, Arizona, and Texas. I swear to God, sometimes it seems like New Mexico is just a giant hole in the rock 'n' roll map.)

Live From Axis Mundi is a CD/DVD set that pretty much sums up this nine-member New York-based band. The 11-song CD consists mainly of live performances of Gogol classics, plus a couple of outtakes from previous studio albums, a few demos, and a dubby instrumental version of "Immigrant Punk." The DVD is a concert video culled from two New York shows on consecutive nights in July 2007, around the time of the release of the band's last studio album, Super Taranta!.

A little history: this band is fronted by singer/guitarist/songwriter Eugene Hütz, a Ukrainian whose family fled that land after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident. Gogol fans just assume that Hütz, like Dr. Bruce Banner, was mutated and transformed by radiation. Whatever the case, The Incredible Hütz landed in New York City in the early '90s, where he fell in with like-minded musicians, many of them immigrants like himself. In an early incarnation of Gogol, the band reportedly played straight guitar/accordion-driven Gypsy music for Russian weddings. But Hütz is a rocker at heart and before the end of the decade, he crafted a sound he calls "Gypsy punk."

I find that phrase, like I do so many neat tags, a little too cute and glib. "Gypsy punk" doesn't come close to doing justice to the sound of the band, which includes musicians from Russia, Israel, Ethiopia, and Scotland. True, there are elements of Gypsy music in the mix. Sometimes there are even acoustic guitar parts suggesting flamenco. As for the "punk" elements, you won't hear much Ramones or Sex Pistols in the Gogol sound. But there are certain similarities with some of the latter-day Clash experiments. If Joe Strummer were still alive, I bet he would have produced at least one Gogol Bordello by now.

The Axis Mundi CD is not quite a greatest-hits affair or even a good survey of the four previous Gogol albums. It's weighted toward Super Taranta! (four songs from that album, plus an outtake) and, to a lesser extent, its predecessor, Gypsy Punk: Underdog World Strike.

But it does contain some of Gogol's finest tunes. Perhaps my personal favorite Hütz song of all time is "American Wedding" ("Have you ever been to American wedding? Where's the vodka; where's the marinated herring?"). The BBC version here is all fired up, even when Hütz fakes snoring in a quiet instrumental bridge. By the end of it, you're craving marinated herring.

"Stivali E Colbacco," an outtake from the Super Taranta! sessions, has an instrumental section featuring a guest banjoist playing off Moscow-born Sergey Rjabtzev's fiddle. For a minute or so, it's like a Slavic hoedown. A new treat is "You Gave Up," a multisegmented odyssey that takes a few minutes to heat up. In this tune you can hear the influence of one of Hütz's musical heroes, Nick Cave. I'm not sure why Hütz shouts "Cumbia!" at the end of the tune. (The electric guitar solo in "Mishto" sounds a lot closer to cumbia than it does in "You Gave Up.")

Gogol Bordello is one of those bands whose true disciples insist that you have to see the group live before you can really claim you're a fan. I tend to dismiss talk like that, but the DVD part of this package shows that the band's live performance is a wondrous thing.

Of course, watching the DVD in the comfort of your living room, even with the volume cranked loud enough to frighten your neighbors, isn't the same as being in the same room with the band and thousands of sweating, bouncing devotees. But seeing the stage show — Hütz's intense singing and wild antics (at a couple of points he pops up, as if by magic, in the balcony, surrounded by fans); Rjabtzev playing his fiddle like some subversive shaman and looking like a crazy Russian version of Mick Fleetwood; dancers Elizabeth Sun and Pam Racine playing cymbals and a big bass drum as if they've just escaped from some bizarre marching band — you realize that, besides being crafty musicians, the band's members are ace entertainers.

The song selection on the DVD includes most of the essential Gogol repertoire: "Start Wearing Purple," "Dogs Were Barking," and "Not a Crime" — my favorite besides "American Wedding" — complete with obnoxious sirens. The DVD also contains four promotional videos (Did MTV ever play these?), an enjoyable little bio doc called Creative People Must Be Stopped, and stray Gogol performance footage.

My only complaint about the whole package is that I wish there were audio versions of the concert songs so we could stick them in our computers and iPods. That way Gogol fans would never have to leave the show.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


It's the third anniversary of Michael Kaiser's groundbreaking, earth-shaking RadiOblivion podcast over at I was honored to be part of a panel of rock 'n' roll cronies on the show, which you can find HERE.

Others on that esteemed gaggle were The Hydes, a band from Brooklyn, filmmaker Mike Ashcraft of Thumbin' Sleazoid Cinema and Los Angeles musician/promoter Jorge Ojeda of The Jixes and Real Boss Hoss Productions Productions.

Go get yourself to RadiOblivion. Download it 0r listen on your computer. But whatever you do, don't really blow your radio up, baby!, like Kaiser says or you won't be able to hear me on KSFR Friday and Sunday nights.

Sunday, November 08, 2009


Sunday, November 8, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
C.C.C.P. by The Hydes
Odessa by The Red Elvises
American Wedding by Gogol Bordello
Hey Clown by Firewater
Nitro by Dick Dale
Some Other Guy by Terry Dee & The Roadrunners
Bad Blood by The Sons of Hercules
Hang on Sloopy by Lolita #18
Ain't That Lovin' You by Link Wray

Gee I Really Love You by Heavy Trash
She Came Before Me by The Almighty Defenders
Fake Skinheads in Love by King Automatic
Six Long Weeks by The A-Bones
El Tren de la Costa by The Del Moroccos
Buzz Buzz Buzz by The Blasters
Amazons and Coyotes by Simon Stokes
Hey Little Girl by The Dead Boys
My Mumblin' Baby by Barrence Whitfield & The Savages

Blues Blues Blues by The Cramps
(The Welfare) Turns Its Back on You by Freddy King
Fox Hunt by Little Freddie King
Can't Read Can't Write Blues by Big Joe Turner
Wish I Was a Catfish by T. Model Ford
Mama Long Legs by Charlie Muselwhite
Bang Your Thing at The Ball by Bob Log III

Lucky Luck Luck by Carla Bozulich & Evangelista
Redhead Walking by Beat Happening
Good Cheer by Mission of Burma
True Believers by Half Japanese
Undertaker by Thinking Fellers Union Local 282
Murder in My Heart for the Judge by Moby Grape
Cocaine Lil by The Mekons
Late Night Scurry by Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, November 07, 2009


* Locust Abortion Technician by Butthole Surfers. These days when you hear the phrase "indie rock," chance are you think mopey wimps singing wistful little tunes full of irony and suburban pain.

Twenty years ago, your image of "indie rock" likely would included visions of crazy motherfuckers with shotguns playing intense psychedelic guitar riffs against a visual backdrop grotesque medical school films of bloody operations

With each passing year I realize more and more what an essential band The Butthole Surfers truly were. Raw psychedelic punk with a Texas drawl. How could you beat that?

This album, their third, was released in 1987, when indie was still underground. The Buttholes were pretty close to their peak at this point. I downloaded it a couple of weeks ago because a hip kid who listens to my Sunday night radio show requested I play "Graveyard" on my Terrell's Sound World Spooktacular . I realized I didn't already have Locust Abortion Technician, and when I listened to the first few seconds of "Graveyard," I realized I needed the whole album.

True story: In 1993, after seeing the Butthole Surfers open for Pearl Jam, my daughter and I saw Gibby Haynes at the old IHOP on Menaul and University in Albuquerque. From that point on, we referred to that place as Butthole Pancakes.

* 99 Chicks by Ron Haydock & The Boppers. I wasn't familiar with this Chicagobilly until earlier this year when the rowdy title track of this collection appeared on Norton Records' I Still Hate CDs compilation.

On this Norton album, there's some decent rockabilly in the mode of Haydock's hero Gene Vincent -- who is the subject of a tribute song here called "Rock Man."

But it's not all rockabilly. The later period of Haydock's musical work comes right out of the world of 1960s era drive-in movie culture.

Indeed, Haydock's life became even more interesting when the original Boppers broke up in 1960. He moved to Hollywood and began writing and editing for horror movie magazines, including my childhood favorite Famous Monsters of Filmland. He even landed some parts in some tacky drive-in type movies including The Thrill Killers (there's some audio from the trailer for that included on the album) and the starring role in Rat Pfink a Boo Boo, a comedy that dealt with a rock 'n' roller who moonlights as a super hero. Five songs, plus film dialogue and a clip from the trailer appear on this album.

Somewhere along the line Haydock started writing what his bio at the Internet Movie Data Base calls "gloriously lurid porno novels" under the pen name Vin Saxon. His musical career apparently was over, but he kept his hand in writing for monster mags and occasional B movie roles. But he began suffering severe depression. According to IMDB,

Unfortunately, Ron suffered a severe mental breakdown in 1977. On August 13, 1977 Haydock was struck and killed by an eighteen-wheeler as he was walking on an exit ramp on Route 66. He was 37 years old. Ron Haydock was buried on the same exact day that Elvis Presley died.

The Very Best of Julia Lee. Here's a Kansas City piano player with a knack for good dirty songs. No, she wasn't crude in the mode of a Lucille Bogan or, skipping ahead a few decades, as explicit as a Denise LaSalle. Lee, whose band was called Her Boyfriends, was the queen of the double-entendre. She was sexy, cleaver and funny, and she could rock that piano.

Back in the mid-to-late '40s, she didn't need to talk dirty for people to know what her songs like "King Size Papa," "My Man Stands Out," "Don't Come Too Soon" and "Don't Save It Too Long" were all about.

Though she was known for her sex songs, this album includes several standards like "When You're Smiling," "Trouble in Mind" and "I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles."

Settle down, Beavis!

* Rob Zombie presents Captain Clegg And The Night Creatures On his previous music project, Texas singer Jesse Dayton, whose résumé includes stints as a guitarist for Waylon Jennings and Ray Price, teamed up with bluegrass singer Brennen Leigh to create an album of sweet country duets. Since that time, Dayton was apparently kidnapped by Rob Zombie and transformed into a fiend named Captain Clegg to sing hillbilly horror songs.

I reviewed this album recently in Terrell's Tuneup. Read that


* "Found a Peanut" by Thee Midnighters. Kid Congo Powers covered this on his recent Dracula Boots album. And I just heard the bitchen original version by East L.A. Chicano garage rockers Thee Midnighters on the latest RadiOblivion podcast.

* The tracks I didn't get last month on A Country Legacy 1930-1939: CD B by Cliff Carlisle

Friday, November 06, 2009


Friday, November 6, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Ghost Riders in the Sky by The Last Mile Ramblers
Arizona Rose by The Waco Brothers
Last Thing on My Mind by Porter Wagoner & Dolly Parton
Five Against One by Al Duval
Cougar Mama by Quarter Mile Combo
Ain't I'm a Dog by Ronnie Self
Laws of Sanity by Koffin Kats
Dark Enough at Midnight by Rosie Flores & The Pine Valley Cosmonauts

Kiwi Moon by John Egenes
I'm Just a Honky by The Ex Husbands
I Love the Way You Do It by Zeno Tornado
Lovely by Shannon McNally
Rake at the Gates of Hell/The Scoundrel's Halo by Sharon Shannon with Shane MacGowan
Big Old World by Boris & The Saltlicks
Sam Hall by Tex Ritter

Johnny Horton Tribute
The Woman I Need (Honkey Tonk Mind) by Johnny Horton
Honky Tonk Man by Dwight Yoakam
North to Alaska by Ted Hawkins
Battle of New Orleans by Johnny Cash
Whispering Pines by Johnny Horton
Lover's Rock by Johnny Horton

A Lotta Lotta Lovin' by Robbie Fulks
Red Rose by The Blasters
Start the Music Without Me by Neil Mooney
Georgia Black Bottom by The Georgia Crackers

Don't Look Down by Tom Russell
She Even Woke Me Up to Say Goodbye by Jerry Lee Lewis
Drinkin' Thing by Gary Stewart
My Rosemarie by Stan Ridgway
The Late John Garfield Blues by John Prine
Pinpoints by Exene Cervenka
That Feel by Tom Waits with Keith Richards

MORE TO COME (Keep refreshing your browser until midnight)

CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Thursday, November 05, 2009


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
November 6, 2009

It supposedly started out as a band that played rockabilly — though admittedly a bizarre, mutated strain of rockabilly. Heavy Trash — made up of Jon Spencer and Matt Verta-Ray — does to rockabilly what Spencer’s previous band, The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, did to the blues.

And on their third album, Midnight Soul Serenade, Spencer and Verta-Ray expand their trashy palette. Even more than on the group’s previous efforts, Going Way Out With Heavy Trash (2007) and its self-titled debut (2005), Spencer and Verta-Ray sift through the rubble of all sorts of rock ’n’ roll and funky soul styles and make them part of their unique joyful noise.
While Heavy Trash doesn’t really sound much like any other group (except maybe The Blues Explosion), several songs on Midnight Soul Serenade sound as if they could be adapted by other bands.

For instance, the opening blast, “Gee I Really Love” sounds like Spencer and Verta-Ray spent a little time dumpster diving at the Brill Building. It has a Shangri-Las feel and would be perfect for the next Mary Weiss solo record. It comes far closer to the New York Dolls spirit than almost anything on the last New York Dolls album.

That song is followed by the dark, bluesy “Good Man,” which sounds as if it could be a long-lost Los Lobos tune. Take a listen and imagine César Rosas on lead vocals. And wouldn’t it be cool if Al Green took a crack at “Isolation,” a slinky little soul-influenced tune with that slinky organ sound found on Green’s early records?

No two songs sound the same. “Sweet Little Bird” sounds like one of Tom Waits’ graveyard blues monsters (think “Big Black Mariah” or even “Jesus Gonna Be Here”). “Pimento” is a Latin-tinged surfy instrumental that starts out with a nylon-string guitar riff. And “(Sometimes You Gotta Be) Gentle” is probably the roughest rocker on the record. “In My Heart” is a greasy ballad featuring a guitar right out of Santos & Johnny’s “Sleep Walk.” There’s even a “sermon” during the instrumental break: “Don’t you see, the soul of a man is a terrible thing. ... Cracks in the wall, spiders in the basement/Without love, you got nothin’ but torment.”

All the songs here are original, with the exception of one of my favorite LaVern Baker songs, “Bumble Bee.” Still, my favorite non-LaVern version of that R & B classic — known for its refrain, “Ooo wee, you hurt me like a bee/A bumble bee, an evil bumble bee!” — was by The Searchers, an underrated British Invasion band.

The one tune that doesn’t really do much for me is “The Pill.” No, it’s not a Loretta Lynn cover. It’s a spoken-word shaggy-dog story about a girl named Betty (“She wore black jeans and a feather in her hair like an Indian.”) over a slow-burning music backdrop featuring a droning guitar and occasional notes from a piano. Maybe I’m not following it closely enough, but I never figured out whether the pill here is LSD or Viagra.

Speaking of The Blues Explosion: Here’s good news for those of you who might have missed them the first time around. Late next spring, according to last week’s Billboard, the Shout! Factory label will begin reissuing that band’s catalog, beginning with 1995’s Now I Got Worry and a new best-of collection. Some of the reissues will include bonus tracks.

Also recommended:

* The Almighty Defenders. Goodness Gussie, it’s a dadgum garage/punk, trash/blues, lo-fi supergroup, a Marvel Team-Up of Black Lips and The King Khan & BBQ Show. And it’s (falsely) advertised as gospel music.

The back story behind this album is that the Atlanta-based Black Lips fled the great nation of India during their world tour earlier this year. (They’ve said in interviews that they were afraid they were going to be arrested for “homosexual acts” onstage.) The group landed in Berlin at the home of Arish “King” Khan, and the jams that ensued resulted in this album.

The album has a relaxed, informal feel — the recordings sound like spontaneous musical outbursts. You could argue that the sum is less than the parts since the “regular” albums of both groups are superior to this collaboration.

But there’s lots of fun stuff here. On the first song, “All My Loving” (not the Beatles’ song of the same title), Khan leads the band in a simple but exhilarating singalong. Mark Sultan, aka BBQ, a Canadian who’s in love with doo-wop, really shines on several cuts, especially “Cone of Light.” It’s a sweet soul shuffle — and the most gospel-sounding track on this unholy record. With Sultan on lead vocals, it sounds like Sam Cooke live at CBGB’s.

Another favorite is “Bow Down and Die,” which sounds like a punk reworking of the country gospel chestnut “Glory Glory.”

There’s one cover, albeit an obscure one — The Mighty Hannibal’s “I’m Coming Home,” a soul song about a soldier going off to war.

I even like the two less-than-two minute instrumentals — “30 Second Air Blast” and “Death Cult Soup ’n’ Salad.” I just want to know who’s doing the Moe Howard imitation at the beginning of the latter.

Too bad these guys aren’t famous enough to be on the right-wing radio radar. “Jihad Blues,” with the line “just gimme a box cutter and a one-way ticket,” would be enough to set off a great fake controversy.

All and all, The Almighty Defenders is keeping me satisfied until I get my hands on the just released new one by King Khan & BBQ, Invisible Girl. (Watch this space.)

Blog Bonus:

Here's a couple of Defenders videos


The National Hispanic Cultural Center will unveil the official State of New Mexico guitar, the “New Mexico Sunrise,” on 6 p.m. Saturday, November 21.

The guitar was created by Pimentel & Sons of Albuquerque. According to the state Department of Cultural Affairs, "Immediately following the presentation, which includes a special performance on the state guitar by Ben Perea, a free public concert will be offered by renowned guitar masters Gustavo Pimentel and Hector Pimentel and Leyenda."

Earlier this year, the state Legislature passed and Gove. Bill Richardson signed Senate Bill 52, which made this the state’s official state guitar. It joins other official state symbols including birds, reptiles, cookies, poems, songs and question. ("Red or Green?")

The Sunrise, according to the DCA is "a steel-string acoustic guitar, made of East Indian rosewood, red Sitka spruce, Honduras mahogany and ebony." It features five Zia emblems, (designed with the permission of Zia Pueblo) inlaid with coral, mother of pearl and ebony, and adorned with the New Mexico sun, a Navajo star, a bear claw, a roadrunner, an outline of the state of New Mexico and an American flag.

Everything but a Roswell alien and a jackalope.

The guitar will be on temporary display at the NHCC through the remainder of 2009 and early 2010, and eventually will be placed permanently in the collections of the New Mexico History Museum in Santa Fe.

Pimentel and Sons was established in 1951 in El Paso, Texas by Lorenzo Pimentel. His sons Rick, Robert, Victor and Agustin have carried on the tradition in Albuquerque,

Sunday, November 01, 2009


Sunday, November 1, 2009
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Yabba Ding Ding by Joe "King" Carrasco
King Takes Queen by King Automatic
Big Game Hunter by Hipbone Slim & The Knee Trembers
Action Packed by The Del Moroccos
A Different Kind of Ugly by The Sons of Hercules
Your Miserable Life by Movie Star Junkies
Sometimes You Got to Be Gentle by Heavy Trash
Money Rock 'n' Roll by The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Oink Jones by The Marathons

Jihad Blues by The Almighty Defenders
Too Much in Love by The King Khan & BBQ Show
Talking Main Event Magazine Blues by Mike Edison & The Rocket Train Delta Science Arkestra
Human Cannonball by Butthole Surfers
Several Sins by The Birthday Party
Bad Girl by The Detroit Cobras
Puto by Davila 666
I Broke Out Your Windshield by Wesley Willis

7 and 7 Is by Love (Johnny Echols & Baby Lemonade)
Hideaway by The Electric Prunes
Psychodelic Nightmare by Dead Moon
Geronimo Stomp by Barrence Whitfield
Deep Shit by Wiley & The Checkmates
A Teenager in Love by Roky Erikson
Cat Man by Ron Haydock & The Boppers

Smooth Jazz by Carla Bozulich & Evangelista
Dog Eat Robot by The Meteors
Take it Like a Man by Mudhoney
Giant Killer by TAD
Stewball by Thee Headcoats
It's No Secret by The Jefferson Airplane
American Life by Primus
Don't You Make Me High by Merline Johnson
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis


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