THE WONDER BAR
Why should humans should have all the fun? We welcome dogs big and small, young and old to run around, sniff some butts and get off the leash for a few hours.
THE CLARKS Tickets: $26 in advance (plus applicable surcharges), $30 at the door Early on, The Clarks were once described as
Tickets: $26 in advance (plus applicable surcharges), $30 at the door
Early on, The Clarks were once described as a bunch of out of tune country hicks. The band took irreverent offense to the comments, saying they were never country hicks. Eleven studio albums and a couple of guitar tuners later, The Clarks have struck again with Madly In Love At The End Of The World, a lively ride down a rural lane, laced with love, mourning, and questions about where it all goes from here.
The band recorded the eleven song album in a converted A-frame church, which helped highlight a series of warm, rock and Alt-Country tunes. The four original members, Scott Blasey (vocals, acoustic guitar), Rob James (6 and 12-string electric guitars, vocals), Greg Joseph (bass, vocals) and David Minarik (drums, vocals) are joined by fellow touring mates Gary Jacob, Skip Sanders and Noah Minarik, tossing out some spanking pedal steel, Hammond organ and tasty guitar. “We’ve never had more fun composing and recording songs,” says bass player Greg Joseph. “With our storied recording history, it’s really heartening to know that music can still captivate the band as much as it has on this album.”
With a highlight reel that includes the Late Show with David Letterman, The Simpsons, and others, The Clarks are enjoying their stage time together now more than ever. “It’s one big extended family,” says guitarist Rob James. “Dave’s son Noah plays on this album, and with us live, so saying that isn’t just a metaphor, it’s fact!” Singing and playing the songs of Madly In Love At The End Of The World has rekindled a fire in The Clarks’ sometimes broken, sometimes mended hearts.
The Clarks are:
Greg Joseph: Bass Guitar, Vocals
Scott Blasey: Lead Vocals, Electric & Acoustic Guitars
Robert James: Electric & Acoustic Guitars, Vocals
David Minarik, Jr.: Drums, Vocals.
(Friday) 7:00 pm
The Wonder Bar
Fifth & Ocean Avenues
THE WEEKS with The Lonely Biscuits Tickets: $15 in advance (plus applicable surcharges) About The Weeks: Rowdy, Raucous, Longhair Mississippi Glam Rock. That's the sound
with The Lonely Biscuits
Tickets: $15 in advance (plus applicable surcharges)
About The Weeks:
Rowdy, Raucous, Longhair Mississippi Glam Rock.
That’s the sound of Easy, The Week’s long-awaited followup to their breakthrough album, Dear Bo Jackson. Recorded at Ardent Studios in Memphis — a place filled with the ghosts (and gear) of the Replacements, ZZ Top, and Big Star, all of whom traveled to Ardent to create their own landmark albums — Easy finds The Weeks doubling down on a mix of groove, grit, and guitars. It’s swaggering and sharply-focused, shining new light on a band of brothers who, although still in their mid-20s, have already logged a decade’s worth of sweaty gigs together.
If Easy bears resemblance to the raw, rowdy attitude of the The Weeks’ live show, it’s because the album was written at the end of a busy, five-year period that found the group rarely leaving the road. “We moved to Nashville in 2010,” remembers frontman Cyle Barnes, who formed the band in Jackson, Mississippi, with his three longtime bandmates: drummer (and twin brother) Cain Barnes, guitarist Sam Williams, and bass player Damien Bone. “We spent 2011 to 2015 touring. November 2015 was the first time we ever spent an entire month in Nashville.”
Those years on the road were eye-opening for The Weeks, all of whom were just teenagers when they began playing together in 2006. By their early 20s, the guys were touring Europe with Kings of Leon, promoting the newly-released Dear Bo Jackson in front of 20,000 people each night. Back in America, The Weeks continued playing their own club shows, too. The experience taught them how to bridge the gap between arena shows and smaller gigs. In short, it taught them how to be themselves, no matter the audience.
Appropriately, Easy consolidates the band’s strengths. While the songs on 2013’s Dear Bo Jackson were thick with horn arrangements, strings, and guest appearances, Easy is a leaner, louder beast. The Weeks began working on its 11 tracks after returning home from a long tour and taking some time to rest, reflect, and regroup. Newly energized, they began writing songs at Sam and Damien’s home in Nashville, with Cyle and Williams splitting the bulk of the songwriting duties. The whole process relied on collaboration, with the full band fleshing out the newer songs.
“Everyone would come to the house, make food, hang out, and play music ’til four in the morning,” Williams remembers. “We wrote 25 songs, then picked our favorites for the final tracklist.
Easy is driving and direct, captured in punchy sound by producer Paul Ebersold. The goal was to clear out any unnecessary clutter, focusing instead on The Weeks’ biggest strengths: the elastic power of Cyle’s voice, capable of a crooning drawl one minute and a roof-raising howl the next; the range of Sam’s guitar playing, from Motown-influenced chord stabs to garage-rock blasts of sound; and the interlocking rhythms of Damien and Cain. They threw some curveballs into the mix, too, riding a lovely, lazy, organ-heavy groove on the southern soul song “Hands on the Radio” and punctuating songs like “Ike” with a small horn section. Along the way, they made good use the studio’s vintage gear, finding room on a handful of songs for Elvis Presley’s microphone, Big Star’s snare drum, the “Green Onions” organ from Booker T. & the M.G.’s.
“We said, ‘If we can do this song in five chords, let’s do it,'” says Sam. “That way, whenever the curveballs do happen, they mean a lot. We focused on the songs first, and then we added stuff, as long as it didn’t harm the energy or the groove. We wanted to pick our moments better.”
Inspired by the real-life characters, places, and stories The Weeks encountered on tour, Easy is a record about where the band has been, as well as a sign of where they’re going. “I wanted the stories to be real — a little dark, maybe — but I wanted them to be redeeming, too,” says Cyle, who began turning the stories into proper songs once the tour ended. He tossed some personal tales into the mix, too, with songs like the autobiographical “Gold Doesn’t Rust” focusing on the joy of plugging in, tuning up and rocking out.
“We just wanted to make a rock record,” adds Damnien, shrugging his shoulders at the simplicity of it all. The Weeks earned their road warrior credentials years ago, but they’ve never defined their ambition — or the wide range of their abilities — this clearly before. And speaking of simple…what’s the deal with that album title?
“We called it Easy because every time I make music with these guys, it’s easy,” says Cain, who has spent more than a third of his life as a member of The Weeks. “It feels good. But the other side of it is, there’s nothing easy about being in a band. There’s nothing easy about staying together for 10 years and still wanting to make music. We have the hardest and easiest job on the planet. But it works for us.”
About The Lonely Biscuits:
The Lonely Biscuits are an Alternative Rock band hailing from Nashville, TN. The band is comprised of Grady Wenrich (Vocals, Guitar), Sam Gidley (Drums) and Nick Byrd (Bass) and was formed in 2011 while all three members were living in the same hall at Belmont University.
After spending the last few years releasing EPs (including their latest, The San Francisco EP), touring the country, and playing festivals like Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Hangout Fest, Firefly, and more, the band has found their footing and are gearing up to release their debut full length record. The Lonely Biscuits teamed up with Nick Bockrath of Cage the Elephant and producer Paul Moak to put together their strongest collection of songs to date. With a sound reminiscent of ’90s slacker rock, the band manages to continue to mature while still showcasing their playful and lighthearted personalities.
(Saturday) 7:00 pm
The Wonder Bar
Fifth & Ocean Avenues
The Biggest Party Night of The Year...Join us Wednesday November 21 for THE GREAT EDDIE TESTA BAND!!! Doors at 8 pm...Showtime 9
The Biggest Party Night of The Year…Join us Wednesday November 21 for THE GREAT EDDIE TESTA BAND!!! Doors at 8 pm...Showtime 9 pm
(Wednesday) 8:00 pm
The Wonder Bar
Fifth & Ocean Avenues