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items tagged with Redstone Room

Unexpected Light in the Darkness: David G. Smith, May 17 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2014-05-03 14:48:36

David G. Smith. Photo by Avory Pierce.In putting together his new album One House, Blue Grass, Iowa-based David G. Smith “ended up with 10 issues-oriented songs,” he said in an interview last week.

This was a bit of an accident. Smith – who will be celebrating the album’s release with a May 17 show at the Redstone Room – said he brought 21 songs to producer Blue Miller and “figured we’d find an album out of that. ... We ended up recording two albums. ... We’ve got another one on deck. It’s already been mastered.”

And when Smith considered which songs to put on which album, One House’s 10 tracks seemed to naturally go together in the order they appear.

The title track asks the question “Can we live in one house built on higher ground?” “Ivory” deals with the illegal trade of elephant tusks. “Jesus Is in Prison” is about a death-row inmate. “Angels Flew” tells the story of a boat lift rescuing people on 9/11. “Doesn’t Take Much Light” and “Ariel” are specific narratives based on real people – with Parkinson’s disease and the extremely rare Rett syndrome, respectively. (The River Music Experience concert is also a platform to raise money for the latter illness.)

It’s a heavy collection, and for some tastes it will likely be too on-the-nose, even though it’s rarely preachy – which Smith called “the mortal sin of songwriting”: “It’s a supreme challenge to try to write something that will strike a chord with people and at least make them pause and maybe think a little bit.”

The subject matter and directness are countered by folk arrangements that are thoughtful and evocative, but more importantly the album – Smith’s second studio effort – is also filled with hope, conviction, earnest heart, and lovely turns of phrase that elevate it. Smith is at his best finding unexpected light in the darkness.


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Photos from the Ballroom Thieves Concert, March 5 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2014-03-10 17:12:32

Photos from the Ballrom Thieves concert at the Redstone Room on March 5, 2014. For more work by Matt Erickson, visit MRE-Photography.com.

Photo by Matt Erickson, MRE-Photography.com


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Photos from the Pokey LaFarge Concert, December 8 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2013-12-11 17:31:34

Photos from the Pokey LaFarge concert at the Redstone Room on December 8, 2013. For more work by Matt Erickson, visit MRE-Photography.com.

Photo by Matt Erickson, MRE-Photography.com


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Photos from the Chuck Ragan Concert, September 18 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2013-09-24 15:20:51

Photos from the Chuck Ragan concert September 18 at the Redstone Room, with openers Comfort and Jamestown Revival.

For more from Roberta Osmers on the Quad Cities music scene, visit OfTechAndMusic.Blogspot.com.

Chuck Ragan:

Photo by Roberta Osmers, OfTechAndMusic.Blogspot.com


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Tapping Into the Spirit: Chuck Ragan, September 18 at the Redstone Room
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2013-09-05 14:52:15

Chuck Ragan. Photo by Tom Stone.

When Chuck Ragan stops in Davenport later this month, his fans shouldn’t miss the opportunity to see him. He’s not likely to announce his retirement from touring any time soon, but he’s regularly talked about the difficulties of being a touring musician and the price that families pay.

And he said in a phone interview last week that someday he will hang up his guitar to spend more time with his family. “Absolutely,” he said. “I’m sure a lot of musicians would say the exact opposite. … [But] I really look forward to that in a huge way. And I don’t know when that is. ... I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with touring and the road. It does take a massive toll. But I think it takes more of a toll on our loved ones, who are on the other side of it.”

Ragan is not, I stress, stepping out of the spotlight soon – which should be apparent from both his recent activity and his plans.


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