Entries tagged with: Scott McCaughey

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The Baseball Project -- the high-concept rock band formed by Scott McCaughey (Young Fresh Fellows) and Steve Wynn (Dream Syndicate) -- released their third album, titled 3rd, back in March. The record, which also features R.E.M.'s Peter Buck and Mike Mills plus drummer Linda Pitmon, hits on more stories from America's Pastime, including songs about Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron,Lenny Dykstra, and acid-tripping pitcher Dock Ellis. You can stream it at Rdio.

There hasn't been a full tour planned, but The Baseball Project do have some upcoming gigs in New York, including one at NYC's Rough Trade on August 2. Tickets for the Rough Trade show go on sale Friday (5/9) at noon.

That show is one day after playing the Baseball Hall of Fame's 75th Anniversary Weekend in Cooperstown, NY (8/1) with Conor Oberst and his tourmates Dawes on deck as well. Tickets for the Cooperstown show are on sale now. The band also play the Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY on July 20.

UPDATE: It's more of an actual tour, it turns out, with a couple week's worth of shows. All dates are listed, along with 3rd artwork and tracklist, below...

Continue reading "The Baseball Project released '3rd,' playing dates this summer, including Rough Trade after Baseball Hall of Fame Anniversary"

by Bill Pearis

The Split Squad: Clem, Keith, Michael, Josh & Eddie
seal

The Split Squad formed around singer/bassist Michael Giblin, who is a session musician and producer and has fronted bands like The Paralax Project and Cherry Twister. If that name is unfamiliar, you might know some of the rest of the band: Clem Burke (Blondie), Keith Streng (The Fleshtones), Eddie Munoz (The Plimsouls), and Josh Kantor (The Baseball Project). The band's 2013 album, Now Hear This, was produced by Young Fresh Fellows frontman Scott McCaughey and features appearances from R.E.M.'s Peter Buck and members of upstate NY powerpop trio The Figgs. Given that group of musicians, it might not surprise you that The Split Squad make crunchy, Beatlesque rock pop. The record's a fun listen and you can stream the whole thing below.

The group are on a weekend East Coast tour and play NYC tonight (4/25) at The Bowery Electric. The Figgs are on the bill, plus Los Dudes, and tickets are on sale.

The Split Squad also play New Haven, CT's Cafe Nine on Saturday (4/26) and Long Branch, NJ's Brighton Bar on Monday (4/28). Dates are listed, along with the album stream, below...

Continue reading "The Split Squad (mems of Blondie, Plimsouls & more) made an LP, playing East Coast dates (NYC tonight w/ The Figgs)"

Baseball

In honor of the Jefferson R. Burdick Collection of more than thirty thousand baseball cards--dating from 1887 to 1959--Spectrum has organized an exciting Friday night event. Starting at 6:00 p.m. in the Bonnie J. Sacerdote Lecture Hall in the Ruth and Harold D. Uris Center for Education, early-comers can meet William C. Rhoden and be treated to a pre-show signing of his book Forty Million Dollar Slaves: The Rise, Fall, and Redemption of the Black Athlete.

At 7:30 p.m., enjoy a lively panel discussion about our card collection and its relationship to baseball. Panelists include:

Sean Kirst, columnist at the Syracuse Post-Standard and author of The Ashes of Lou Gehrig and Other Baseball Essays
Dale Murphy, retired Major League Baseball player
William C. Rhoden, sports columnist at the New York Times
Sharon Robinson, educational consultant, author, and daughter of the great Jackie Robinson

After the panel discussion, the supergroup The Baseball Project (Peter Buck, Scott McCaughey, Steve Wynn, and Linda Pitmon, with a special guest appearance by Mike Mills) will perform a very special set, with songs inspired by the Museum's baseball card collection.

Tickets are still available for tonight;s event (4/13).

The Red Krayola also play a NYC museum tonight (and tomorrow) (the Whitney).

Julianna Barwick and Grouper play one tonight too! Their show is at the Guggenheim where Cold Cave and Zola Jesus (with help from JG Thirwell) also have shows coming up. Tix are still available for tonight's show and for Cold Cave's too. Zola Jesus goes on sale on 4/18.

The Baseball Project also played Maxwell's the other night, but have no other upcoming dates at the moment. Check out the new video for 2010 song "All Future and No Past" below...

Continue reading "The Baseball Project playing a baseball (card) event @ the Met tonight; Cold Cave tix on sale; Grouper tonight too"

Mountain Goats @ Knitting Factory, Halloween 2005 (more)
Mountain Goats

As previously mentioned, John Wesley Harding is holding a "Cabinet of Wonders" variety show at NYC's City Winery on October 28th with Hamilton Leithauser (The Walkmen), Eugene Mirman, John Hodgman, Emma Straub, Paul Harding, and more TBA. Since our last mention, two very special guests have been added to the bill: Craig Finn (The Hold Steady) and John Darnielle (The Mountain Goats). Hopefully you didn't sleep on tickets because the show is now sold out.

Tickets are however on sale now for A Haunted Hot Tub Halloween at Littlefield, also a comedy and music variety show, happening one day later (10/29) with Kristen Schaal, Kurt Braunohler, Wyatt Cenac, Andres du Bouchet, and... John Darnielle, and more.

Tickets are also on sale for Hot Tub on 10/10 and 10/17.

Tickets are also still on sale for the 11/18 Cabinet of Wonders at City Winery with The Blue Fisherman (from Edinburgh, Scotland), Howe Gelb, Myla Goldberg, Ted Leo, Eugene Mirman, Audrey Niffenegger AND "Plus for this Cabinet of Wonders, and this Cabinet of Wonders only, the House Band will be THE KING CHARLES TRIO, comprising: Peter Buck (REM), Jenny Conlee-Drizos, Chris Funk, John Wesley Harding (Appearing as Himself), Scott McCaughey (The Minus Five), John Moen, and Nate Query." That's a lot of Decemberists. More upcoming JWH shows HERE

Speaking of Ted Leo and Craig Finn, both are scheduled to make appearances at the BrooklynVegan-presented Replacements tribute shows happening at Bowery Electric in November. The previously announced two shows (and movie screenings) are sold out, BUT a third tribute concert - a late one on 11/17, has been added. Tickets for the new show are on sale. More info HERE.

Mountain Goats dates and flyers below...

Continue reading "3rd Replacements tribute show added, John Darnielle schedules guest appearances, Craig Finn too"

words & photos by David Andrako

"Boo Todd relentlessly. Throw shit at him. When Jon (Benjamin) and I tell you to stop, ignore us and boo louder." - David Cross's instructions to the audience just before Todd Barry's "surprise" appearance.

John Wesley Harding

The Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival came to a close on Sunday, its fourth and final day, at The Bell House with two sold out shows. There was the early show billed as "Wes and Eugene's Cabinet of Wonders", and the late show "A Toddless Tinkle."

Friend and frequent collaborator of Eugene, John Wesley Harding, hosted the early show along with Eugene. The show featured performances by Yo La Tengo, John Oliver, Colson Whitehead, Darin Strauss, and Scott McCaughey.

Darin Strauss, the Brooklyn based author of "Half a Life" read a recently written piece entitled "Puberty", which was an autobiographical story set in the mid 1980s that involved gaining entrance to a much cooler high school classmate's party. Scott McCaughey, touring member of REM, performed two songs backed by Harding and his backing band The English UK including a 5 minute tribute to the 1986 Mets.

Eugene Mirman made a brief appearance with his newly purchased $380 Theremin and also returned to the stage to "sing" a cover of Simon and Garfunkel's "Mrs. Robinson." Colson Whitehead, the New York based author, read a chapter from his best selling 2009 book, Sag Harbor. "John Wesley Harding's favorite comedian", John Oliver, from The Daily Show and the upcoming "Smurfs" movie followed with a set that featured a particularly interesting story about a gig in the remote Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Yo La Tengo closed the show with a five song set that featured both Harding and McCaughey and included covers of "I'm A Believer" and The Kinks' "All That Will."

Between the shows Eugene made his way out to the dunk tank in front of The Bell House as John Oliver and Daniel Kitson threw balls at the target and were cheered on by the long line of fans waiting for the 2nd show.

Tinkle

The 2nd show, "A Toddless Tinkle", was hosted by Tinkle founders David Cross and Jon Benjamin. Todd Barry, the other member of the Tinkle crew was at the Music Hall of Williamsburg as an opening act for Superchunk. From the beginning of the show Cross and Benjamin let the crowd in on the fact that Todd would be making a "surprise" walk on sometime between 10 and 11PM. Both agreed that the proper greeting for Todd would be for the audience to boo him off stage. Throughout the evening random audience members were brought onstage to audition to fill the role of "Todd." "Todd #2", an audience member named Andy ventured out into the audience to attempt to do some of Todd's famous crowd work. Andy failed miserably but did offer some unintentional comedy when he approached (and didn't recognize) Ira Kaplan of Yo La Tengo and mocked him for his orange shirt and told him that he looked like Gilbert Gotfried. Cross quickly jumped in and saved Kaplan from being mocked by the auditioning "Todd".

Todd Barry made his way to The Bell House shortly after 11PM and was greeted by the aforementioned boos as well as cups, beer cans and hundreds of expletives. He attempted to win the crowd over but ended up quickly leaving the stage and the venue.

The nearly 3 hour show featured short sets from John Mulaney, Kristen Schaal, Eugene Mirman, and Karen Kilgariff. Festival favorite Daniel Kitson was the final performer of the evening with a 12 minute set that saw him chastise the audience over their reaction to Todd Barry's appearance and pointed out that everyone went along with the "mean boys" (Cross and Benjamin). The show ended with the 2nd ever screening of Cross and Bejamin's "Paid Programming", a mock informercial that aired a handful of times on Adult Swim last fall. The 11 minute short was meant to be aired at 4AM and didn't have any mention of the creators. And with that the 3rd Annual Festival came to a close. 9 shows, 3 venues, 25 velvet paintings of Eugene and 1 angry Todd Barry.

Check out the pictures and reviews from previous nights: NIGHT 1, NIGHT 2 and NIGHT 3. NIGHT 4 continued below...

Continue reading "Todd Barry booed, Yo La Tengo harassed, David Cross & more @ night 4 of the Eugene Mirman Comedy Fest (pics & review)"

words & photos by Lori Baily

The Baseball Project

The Baseball Proiject headlined a show at Maxwell's on Thursday night. It was before their set over the weekend at Wilco's Solid Sound Festival in North Adams, MA...

Wilco headlined, and Mavis Staples was their lead-in, but there was six hours of music before them Saturday at Solid Sound Festival at Mass MoCA in North Adams, Mass.

The warm, sunny afternoon made for perfect festival conditions for a series of sets by Wilco-curated bands which alternated between a pair of stages set up in outdoor courtyards on the Mass MoCA grounds.

Alt-rock supergroup the Baseball Project brought together Mike Mills of R.E.M., Steve Wynn of the Miracle 3 (and formerly of the Dream Syndicate), Scott McCaughey of the Minus 5 and journeywoman drummer Linda Pitmon to perform songs that were, in fact, mostly about baseball. Call it good, clean, nerdy fun.

With a rollicking rock 'n' roll sensibility, the foursome sang a tune written after a night out drinking with now-retired pitcher Jack McDowell, advocated for the inclusion of Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Harvey Haddix on the list of starters who have thrown perfect games (Haddix kept one going for 12 innings in 1959 before losing in the 13th) and threw in a couple of Minus 5 tunes, including "Lies of the Living Dead" and "Aw Shit Man." [Hartford Courant]

Mike Mills was filling for Peter Buck at that show and at the one in NJ on Thursday, where everyone was having a good time - performers and audience alike.

I know nothing about baseball or I would've been entertained even more. Scott McCaughey joined opener Dennis Diken for a couple of songs at the end of their set. The guys (and gal) in both bands are all really sweet and down to earth, Mike Mills even requested that he not be "lit like a lead singer, cause I'm not a lead singer."

More pictures of the NJ show, below...

Continue reading "The Baseball Project played Wilco's Solid Sound Festival & Maxwell's w/ Dennis Diken with Bell Sound (pics)"

Uncle TupeloJust a week after fellow Uncle Tupelo member Jeff Tweedy released the self-titled Wilco album, Jay Farrar drops Son Volt's strongest effort in years, American Central Dust. Tour dates HERE.

This week's music release list may be relatively short, but several of these discs are already among my favorites of the year, including Bowerbirds' Upper Air, Those Darlins' self-titled debut album, and Tiny Vipers' Life On Earth. Bowerbirds are now on tour with a show at Bowery Ballroom in NYC on Wednesday (7/8).

The Drive-By Truckers' Live from Austin Texas captures the band's latest Austin City Limits performance, complete with audio and video cut from the broadcast.

Poet: A Tribute to Townes Van Zandt collects covers from Steve Earle, Lucinda Williams, and Willie Nelson.

Scott McCaughey, who is doing a bunch of touring this summer, marks a rare double this week with new albums out from both of his bands, The Minus 5's Killingsworth and Young Fresh Fellows' I Think This Is.

Other albums sent my way that I can recommend include Cass McCombs' Catacombs, Music From The North Country: The Jayhawks Anthology, Oneida's Rated O, and The Rural Alberta Advantage's Hometowns.

The week's reissue highlights are Matador Records' vinyl releases of two Yo La Tengo albums (Electr-O-Pura and I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One, New Pornographers' Electric Version, as well as Cat Power's The Covers Record. Yo La Tengo have a new album coming out soon too.

What new music can you recommend this week? What's on your shopping list? Have I left any interesting releases off the list?

Continue reading "Largehearted Boy's Interesting CD Releases This Week"

by Andrew Frisicano

Scott McCaughey w/ Eugene Mirman @ The Bell House (more by Lori Baily)
Scott McCaughey and Eugene Mirman

Bassists/guitarist Scott McCaughey and guitarist/bassist Peter Buck collaborate quite a bit. First, they both play in R.E.M. Recently, both backed Robyn Hitchcock as part of the Venus 3 on his spring tour. Those shows were a combination of opening dates for the Decemberists (like at Radio City) and headlining shows. The band's June 11th show at the Bell House was the latter.

McCaughey and Buck also play as the Minus 5. And, with Steve Wynn and drummer Linda Pitmon, they form the Baseball Project (appropriately, a group that composes baseball themed songs).

Steve WynnWynn and Pitmon are prolific in their own right. Both just gigged as part of Steve Wynn and the Miracle 3, performing Medicine Show by Dream Syndicate (Wynn's old band) at the Bell House on June 27th. A live recording of that show is available at The Archive. (There's another of those Medicine Show gigs coming up in LA in July.)

The a-four-mentioned musicians pack into the tour van this August to play an amalgamated series of shows, billed as "An Evening with The Minus 5, the Baseball Project, and the Steve Wynn IV Performed by Scott McCaughey, Peter Buck, Steve Wynn and Linda Pitmon." Part of that will be a gig at the Bowery Ballroom in NYC on Wednesday, September 23rd. Tickets go on sale Friday, July 10th at noon.

If that's not enough, you can catch Buck on the recently reissued version of R.E.M's 1984 album Reckoning (though not McCaughey -- he didn't join the group till the '90s). R.E.M. are also releasing a 4-song live digital EP on July 9th, and a 2-CD live album later this year.

All Minus 5 + Steve Wynn + friends tour dates below...

Continue reading "Steve Wynn played Medicine Show @ the Bell House ++ Minus 5 & the Baseball Project touring, playing Bowery (all dates)"

Good Night Oslo

"On February 17th Robyn Hitchcock & the Venus 3 - comprised of R.E.M's Peter Buck on guitar, Scott McCaughey (The Minus 5, Young Fresh Fellows, R.E.M.) on bass and drummer Bill Rieflin (Ministry, R.E.M.) - will storm back onto the pop music landscape with Goodnight Oslo, the follow-up to their critically lauded 2006 album Olé Tarantula.

Olé Tarantula marked the beginning of a stark renaissance in the career of one of Britain's most enduring songwriters and performers, reinvigorating his unique artistic voice and illuminating his influence on another generation of psychedelic folk disciples. Continuing Olé's trend, Goodnight Oslo explodes the Hitchcock myth with an album of pure pop mastery complete with horns, jangling guitar hooks and signature Hitchcock-ian word paintings that prove the Englishman's creative engine is more fiery than ever. Goodnight Oslo harkens back to Hitchcock masterpieces Underwater Moonlight and Globe of Frogs, with early opinions calling it one the best albums of his already storied career.

The album features guest vocals from Colin Meloy (The Decemberists) and Sean Nelson (The Long Winters, Harvey Danger). One man horn section Terry Edwards contributes signature stabs and sweeps, adding color what Robyn refers to as, "The best record of my adult life," and his unique vision of pop music in a perfect world.

Much about finding a return route out of the rabbit hole, Goodnight Oslo is bright and shining, further delineating this era from the frequently dark nature of his earlier work. Says Robyn, "These songs are largely about breaking out of a negative cycle, and believing that change can happen. It's not a recovery album or a therapy album per se; it's just a sign to the exit."

Oslo comes on the heels of 2 meticulously curated retrospective boxed sets. I Wanna Go Backwards and Luminous Groove combine to reissue six albums (plus 4 discs of rarities) worth of Hitchcock's 1980's Egyptians and solo output." [PR]

Colin Meloy appears on Robyn's new album, and Robyn does the same for Colin's.

Robyn's last NYC show was at Symphony Space. His next one is at Irving Plaza on April 11th. Tickets are on sale. While in town, there's a good chance Robyn will also visit The Red Flame Coffee Shop (W 44th St.), Cafe Figaro (Bleecker & MacDougal), The Campbell Apartments (15 Vanderbilt Ave between E. 42nd & 43rd), Nat Sherman's (5th Ave & 42nd St), Fred's at Barney's (Madison & 61st), and Nikko's (on Broadway & 76th).

All tour dates below...

Continue reading "ROBYN HITCHCOCK & the Venus 3 - new album out now (w/ Colin Meloy), 2009 TOUR DATES (w/ Irving Plaza)"

DOWNLOAD: The Baseball Project - Past Time (MP3)

The Baseball Project (photo by Vivian Johnson)
The Baseball Project

What happens when two great songwriters decide to focus their talents upon their favorite sport? You get the highly entertaining debut disc from The Baseball Project, Volume One: Frozen Ropes and Dying Quails. The album is the brainchild of Steve Wynn (Dream Syndicate, Steve Wynn and the Miracle 3) and Scott McCaughey (Young Fresh Fellows, Minus 5, and R.E.M). The two musicians were longtime fans of each other's work throughout the 80s but never met until the early 90s. Wynn recalls, "I honestly think the first time we met was side-by-side at the urinals at the Offramp in Seattle when I played there in 1992." He adds, "Scott didn't try to shake my hand."
Stream the entire album now courtesy of Yep Roc. It will be in stores on July 8th. They performed on Letterman last night with drummer Linda Pitmon and R.E.M.'s Peter Buck as the rest of their band. Peter performed at Madison Square Garden a day earlier. Watch the Letterman video below....

Continue reading "The Baseball Project = Steve Wynn & Scott McCaughey - album stream & Letterman video (starring Peter Buck)"