Archive for the ‘Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls’ Category

[ATTENDED: October 3, 3021] Frank Turner with Matt Nasir

Frank Turner has been opening for the Counting Crows, a band that he loves which I absolutely do not.  There is no way I would have gone to see him with that other band, even though I have been wanting to see him for many years now.

And then, on September 15, Frank Turner announced that he would be playing Underground Arts on October 3.  At 2PM!

Turns out that on the Crows’ days off, Frank decided to play some solo shows (with opening acts).

This show was going to be the first of two shows he’s play that day!

I grabbed tickets immediately.  What a novel idea to have an evening free after seeing a show.

Frank used to be in a punk band and then he became a kind of punky folk singer.  He writes politically charged anthemic sing alongs.  A kind of younger Billy Bragg.  And while he songs are great, it’s his live shows that are do amazing because he gets the audience 100% involved. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: October 3, 2021] Kayleigh Goldsworthy

On September 15, Frank Turner announced that he would be playing Underground Arts on October 3.  At 2PM!

I grabbed tickets immediately.  I have been wanting to see Frank Turner for years.

I didn’t know if he’d even have an opening act, but indeed he did.  It was Philly singer-songwriter Kayleigh Goldsworthy.  he was supposed to tour with Frank back in 2020, but the tour was cancelled.  Frank called on her again, and this was her first show since the pandemic.

I thought that I hadn’t heard of Goldworthy, but it turned out that I had actually seen her perform before!  She sang (a couple of songs) with Kevin Devine when I saw him at Underground Arts. I was also supposed to see her open for Tigers Jaw on a few postponed shows.

Kayleigh commanded the afternoon crowd right off the bat. She sang slow ballads that were full of angst.  Her voice was really strong and she had the amazing confidence to have long (relatively) stretches of her song where very little happened.  And we were rapt by her.  Her voice sounded very familiar to me–like someone who I can’t place.

I don’t know any of the songs she sang, although I may be able to add songs to the setlist as I listen to her CD more.

I feel like she must have sung “Cursed to Wander” because it’s the new song, but the recorded version is pretty rocking and her set was quite mellow.

As you can see from the poster, Kayleigh only played the shows on our date, so it was a nice treat to hear her.


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vanSOUNDTRACK: FRANK TURNER-Tiny Desk Concert #287 (July 13, 2013).

turnertinydeskNPR introduced me to Frank Turner and I’m pretty delighted that they did.  I really enjoyed his set at the Newport Folk Festival.  And here’s another live recording (a Tiny Desk Concert).

In this brief set, Frank and mandolin player Matt Nasir (he’s only been playing it for 6 months) blast through 3 of his rockingest folk songs.  “Recovery,” “The Way I Tend to Be,” (with a very funny lead story) and a rousing mandolin solo-filled and a (reluctant) NPR audience singalong. of the great “Photosynthesis.”  I imagine it was quite loud in their offices that day.

Turner is fantastic live—he’s personable and funny and even more so in this intimate setting.  It’s a wonderful set.

Check it out.

[READ: August 23, 2013] The Van

This is the final book in the “Barrytown Trilogy” (except for the new one coming out next year).  Whereas The Snapper was tied to The Commitments by virtue of it being the same family, The Van is tied to The Snapper because it follows the same guy—Jimmy Rabbitte Sr.

It’s 1990 (a few years after The Snapper because the baby from that book is now talking and mobile) and like many older people in Ireland, Jimmy Sr. has been laid off.  The first third of the book looks at life on the dole in Ireland—skimpy Christmas presents and getting handouts from your son.  And yet there’s always money for a pint or two—so Jimmy still gets to hang out with his mates at the pub a few nights a week.  He also goes out with the baby from time to time and occupies himself in various ways (pitch n putt).  There’s a lot of humor and silliness in this section–especially within the family when the twin girls start getting older and even cheekier.  And the focal point is the World Cup—because Ireland is actually going to be in it this year—Italia ’90!

And the Jimmy’s mate Bimbo gets laid off.  And that’s where the titular van comes in (over 100 pages into the story).  Bimbo is crushed to be laid off, but Jimmy is a little pleased.  He’s not happy that Bimbo is laid off, but he is happy that he has someone to waste the day with.  They go golfing together (and win a prize or two) and they do their best trying to stay happy.  But they’ve noticed that the fish and chips van that used to be parked outside of the bar is no longer there.  It’s a sad state of affairs when you’re drunk and hungry at midnight and can’t get a fish n chips.

And that’s when their friend Bertie (who can get anything for anyone) comes through on Bimbo’s half serious question–could Bertie get him a chipper van?  Bertie finds one—an unholy filthy mess of a thing with no engine.  And Bimbo uses his redundancy money, £800, to buy the mess.  Jimmy is appalled until Bimbo starts talking about the two of them being partners—working together to makes some money and sell chips to their drunken mates and—even better—to the punters who are enjoying the World Cup!  And suddenly it seems like a real idea. (more…)

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SlexOUNDTRACK: FRANK TURNER & THE SLEEPING SOULS Live at the Newport Folk Festival (2013).

frakWhenever NPR streams and saves festivals shows, I like to check out the bands I love (of course), but I also check out some of the bands I’d never heard of before.  And sometimes it leads to a fantastic discovery.  Like Frank Turner.  I had no idea who he was, but he was described as folk-punk which is quite accurate.  He reminds me of Billy Bragg in his younger, harder days.  Turner is British, he has a very thick accent when he sings and while he is nowhere near as political as Bragg, he treads in that same line of folkiness.

His lead off track, “Four Simple Words” (the words are “I Want to Dance”) begins as a folkie song, but it quickly morphs into a rollicking stomper (louder than most bands at Newport, he theorizes).  But a song like “Try This at Home” seems to speak to his overall ethos—music for the people by the people:

Because there’s no such thing as rock stars There’s just people who play music
And some of them are just like us And some of them are dicks
So quick, turn off your stereo Pick up that pen and paper
Yeah, you could do much better Than some skinny half-arsed English country singer

There are a few more specifically pointed messages like “Glory Hallelujah,” whose chorus goes “There is no-o-o God, so clap your hands together.”  As well as a funny (but not really) song which he introduces as being written because he read Gene Simmons’ autobiography.  Simmons says he slept with 4,600 some women which he knows because he has taken a Polaroid of each one.  Turner is appalled “what an ass” and wrote “Wherefore Art Thou, Gene Simmons” as a response.

But the majority of songs are about love and life, going home again and playing music.  And, in this live setting Turner is fantastic—getting the crowd to sing along, having great banter and being a wonderful showman.

The final song is a great sing-along with the simple but effective chorus of: “I won’t sit down and I won’t shut up.  And most of all I will not grow up.”  I’m totally enjoying Turner’s music and now I’m going to have to check out his actual releases (he has four or five).  See more about him at his website.

[READ: July 20, 2013] Lexicon.

Virginia Woolf has gotten a hold of a word which has caused untold destruction in a small town in Australia.  W.B. Yeats has sent T.S. Eliot and a non-poet named Wil to get the word back and, if possible to kill Virginia Woolf.

Intrigued?  Yeah me too.

I saw this book in Barnes & Noble and was really excited that Barry had a new book out.  And when I pointed it out to Sarah she said , “I already have a hold on it.”  So, when it came in I took it from her pile and now it has to go back before she gets a chance to read it.

Imprinted in the crazy cover image are a series of odd characters and amid them it says 4 why did you do it.  I was trying to figure out if there was more to this secret message, but there isn’t.  However, it is a clue to what lies inside.

I guess in the grand scheme of things, the story is pretty simple (if not a little confusing).  What I laid out above is the skeletal outline; however, Barry interweaves the story with past and future (and a whole lot of mind control) and he begins the book right in the middle of utter chaos. (more…)

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