Monday, December 29, 2014

Video Day #tzaupbeat

I’ve been digging Kieza for awhile, and now she’s teamed up with Jack Ü (Diplo & Skrillex) for Take Ü There.  Belle & Sebastian has a new video for The Party Line, off their upcoming album.  Hercules & Love Affair with a new video for Do You Feel The Same.

Bonus:  Love the casual nature of Beyonce’s new video.

Over the Rhine (12/10/14)

I’ve seen (and enjoyed) Over the Rhine in concert before, but this show was more about seeing Lily & Madeline for me.    I’ve been enjoying the last two albums from these ladies - immensely.  They were soft spoken, but their music was effortless and refreshing.  Unfortunately for us though, our seats at the Music Box were obstructed, but now I know where we should be sitting for future shows.

Lily & Madeline (12/10/14)

Over the Rhine were superb as well.  Seeing both these acts at the Music Box, with a great dinner in front of us, was quite a treat.  I would also recommend seeing Over the Rhine at Christmastime as well, as it’s one of their favorite genre’s for music and storytelling.  What a delight.

Over the Rhine (12/10/14)

Generationals (12/4/14)

An extra treat on this night out with my Sister, I found out last minute that Generations would be performing on the campus here at Case Western Reserve University!  They’ve been one of my *favorite* pop bands lately, so we were lucky enough to catch a good portion of their show after Martina McBride.  The juxtaposition from a Rocksino to the basement of a private University was also entertaining.  The crowd was disappointingly light, to where the Generationals asked if they normally had shows in this space.  But I was delighted none the less.

Generationals (12/4/14)

Generationals (12/4/14)

Martina McBride (12/4/14)

This show was for my sister.  Martina McBride was breaking with her country roots to bring diverse performance that incorporated rock, blues, swing, and just about everything else.  The place was packed, and I won some $ too… A fun night with the sis!

Martina McBride (12/4/14)

Melissa Etheridge (11/14/14)

A couple days after seeing Ryan Adams at Playhouse Square, we were back again to see Melissa Etheridge.  With a new independent album out, she’s reinvigorating her career.  She was energetic live, as usual.  I’m also including some clips of things below that I’ve been meaning to share as well… 

Melissa Etheridge (11/14/14)

"The album, perhaps her best since 'Yes I Am,'' boasts different phrasings and different rhythms, yet it's still decidedly Etheridge, only traveling in a new direction.

'Yes, that's it,'' Etheridge said in a call from her home in Los Angeles. 'I started such a journey last year, changing up my whole career."

(Via.Melissa Etheridge takes ownership of herself and her music with 'This Is M.E.' |

 I love the vintage video segments in the following video… 


"No amount of technology, no Auto-Tune wizardry, can satisfy the souls that want to be touched in the moment when a human being takes the stage and uses their vocal cords and emotions in ways that can move us to tears.

The uncanny -- the thing that is almost human but isn't quite -- only makes the real more valuable."

(Via.Melissa Etheridge Op-Ed: Why Auto-Tune Has No Soul | Billboard)

Ryan Adams (11/11/14)

Time to catch up on shows from this past year.  A new job and a new puppy has been keeping me pretty busy…

This was my second time seeing Ryan Adams at Playhouse Square, with my first being all the way back in 2008. I said back then that I would definitely see him again, and I stuck to my word.  This was a great show, and he’s such a musical force.  More details below...

Ryan Adams (11/11/14)

Ryan Adams (11/11/14)

"He and his terrific four-piece band knocked out such a vigorous version of the song that Letterman appeared dumbfounded and even made the group launch into a reprise that segued into the commercial break. For the most part, that energy translated to the State Theatre stage last night where Adams played a two-hour set. Channeling Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers and the Band, Adams and co. sounded particularly sharp, suggesting that Adams, who regularly changes lineups, might want to stick with these guys a little longer. "

(Via.Singer-songwriter Ryan Adams Inspires Devotion, Shuts Down Hecklers | Scene and Heard: Scene's News Blog | Cleveland Scene)

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Video Day #tzachill

 First Aid Kit has a new video for Stay Gold.  Next up is Blonde Redhead’s new video for Dripping.  An expected artistic wonder of a video for Fool by Perfume Genius.

Bonus: He’s nearing total crush status… Nick Jonas is feeling Jealous.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Video Day #tzaupbeat

It’s Friday y’all! Here’s a new video from The DØ with Despair, Hangover & Ecstasy. CHVRCHES have a new video for Under The Tide.  Little Dragon are still at it with their video for Underbart.


Bonus: Waters’ I Feel Everything.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Video Day #tzachill

New Russian Red for Michael P.  Love her!   Tennis has a nice groove going with I’m Callin’.  A gorgeous video by Damien Rice (as you’d expect) for I Don’t Want to Change You.

Bonus:  Head & the Heart’s Let’s Be Still

Sunday, December 7, 2014

New Find: Cash+David

I don’t know much about these guys, other than these amazing videos and beats.  I can’t wait to hear about an album - hopefully coming soon.

C+d green name

Monday, November 24, 2014

Video Day #tzaupbeat

Get your short week started off right. Generationals with a new video for Gold Silver Diamond.  Multi-Millionare Calvin Harris is back with a new album and a decent video for Slow Acid (a guilty pleasure).  Gwen Stephani is back(!) with Baby Don’t Lie.

Bonus:  Todd Terje’s Delorean Dynamite - disco/dance delicious!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Video Day #tzaupbeat

It’s Saturday! Royksopp & Robyn kill it once again, with Monument (stunning). A new video for The Juan MacLean for A Simple Design. Basement Jaxx have a new video for We Are Not Alone.  

Bonus today is a new video from Diplo, Yellow Claw and LNY TNZ.  Diplo has to be one of the hardest working men in  music (he is everywhere).

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Bandcamp's Ethan Diamond on Music Collecting

This explains why I see streaming services like Spotify or Beats as only accompaniments to my actual collection. 

Tonight: Ryan Adams @ Playhouse Square

Ryan Adams Tonight at Playhouse Square! 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Video Day #tzachill

The Modern Electric with a fun new video for David Bowie Save Us All!  Ryan Hemsworth with a new video for Snow in Newark (new album out Nov. 4th).  Son Lux has stark and intense (NSFW) video for Easy.

Bonus this week is a new video for Coulda Been My Love by Foxygen - who just released their second album.

Yelle (10/17/14)

Yelle is a great pop band from France.  I’ve been liking their stuff for years, but this was my first time catching them live.  Seeing this show at the Grog Shop has just cemented these guys as one of my favorite pop bands!  Lively, theatrical, and knows how to get a crowd moving (a huge change from the Beachland a couple nights before).  All around party.

Yelle (10/17/14)

Yelle (10/17/14)

(Here’s a bunch of other songs together…)

OK Go (10/15/14)

Second night in a row at the Beachland, but in the Ballroom this time.  Got a group of friends together to see OK Go, but not before seeing Rollergirl performing is big opening slot for them.  He was great as usual, but also as usual, the concert crowd was stiff as a board.  Not all of them, but this phenomenon is still a mystery to me.

Rollergirl (10/15/14)

OK Go was everything you’d expect.  Lots of tech and graffiti… I feel the same for their live show, as I do with their recorded music.  I think they’re fun… but that’s about it.  I don’t know if I’m too distracted by the schtick to connect with the music, or if it isn’t connect-worthy.  Whatever, these guys are always a party.

OK Go (10/15/14)

Gardens & Villa (10/14/14)

What a great show!!  Their 80’s throwback pop/electronic sound is just superb - and current at the same time.  These guys are A+.

Gardens & Villa (10/14/14)

Gardens & Villa (10/14/14)

I should technically mention that Alex G opened the show (meh).

Created with flickr badge.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Video Day #tzachill

Hidden Cameras have a new video out for Carpe Jugular.  Things lighten up a bit with tUe-yArDs new video for Real Thing. Caribou has a new (and kinda sad) video for Our Love.

Bonus:  A new video for Liam Finn, who I’ve seen and really enjoyed, but this video is, something else...

Tonight: Yelle @ Grog Shop

Yelle is performing tonight at the Grog Shop ($18).  Brush up on your French!

Yelle 118 1 540wide

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Happy Dog at The Euclid Tavern Opens Today!!

Finally!!  …and very exciting.

Here is a superb piece on The Happy Dog opening up the venerable Euclid Tavern - and the importance that Derek Hess had on it’s history, both of the venue and the city’s music scene.  I love how his art was central to the venue’s success.

The Euclid Tavern Reopens; Artist Derek Hess:

"Lovers of hot dogs and good music rejoice! Sean Watterson, the owner of the Happy Dog in the Gordon Square Arts District of Cleveland, is bringing his popular combination of food and entertainment to a shuttered University Circle hot-spot the Euclid Tavern. ‘The Euc,’ was once the spot for blues and rock and roll in the region, attracting musicians Chrissie Hynde, Mr. Stress, Robert Lockwood, Jr., Joan Jett, and in 1987, Michael J. Fox in the film, ‘Light of Day.’ We sit down with the man who’s out to bring the ‘Euc’ back."

(Via.Applause: The Euclid Tavern Reopens; Artist Derek Hess / ideastream - Northeast Ohio Public Radio, Television and Multiple Media)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Heights Music Hop 2014

I missed this event last year, but this year but this year the Heights Music Hop was amazing!  Lee Road in Cleveland Heights was bustling.  Well produced, well attended.  Claps all around for the effort this year… 

Heights Music Hop 2014

Heights Music Hop 2014

Heights Music Hop 2014

Heights Music Hop 2014

Heights Music Hop 2014

Video Day #tzachill

New(ish) video for TRUST, for Are We Arc?  Next up is a new video for Snowmine’s Tidal Wave.  Just catching up with this slightly older video for Avi Buffalo’s So What.

Bonus this week is another slightly older video.  Perfume Genius has been getting all kinds of good reviews lately, and with videos like this, I’m not surprised.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Tomorrow: Gardens & Villa @ Beachland Tavern

Gardens & Villa will be at the Beachland Tavern tomorrow night!! $12. This should be an amazing show!  Check them out below.  Also, sign up on their mailing list to get their Televisor EP for free!

GV 1401 1


Opening is Alex G. (below) and Summerays.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Tomorrow: Heights Music Hop @ Cleveland Heights

Tomorrow night!  Cleveland Heights will be hopping! 

Heightshopposter14 6 733x1024

» Heights Music Hop Unveils Music Lineup: "The Heights Music Hop was a huge success last year and is on track for being even bigger and better this year. More than 30 musical acts will perform at over 10 venues from 5:00pm – 11:00pm."


Monday, October 6, 2014

Video Day #tzachill

Starting off this Video Day with a gorgeous cover of Ancora Tu by Roisin Murphy.  Elliphant and MØ, both Scandanavian artists, collaborate on this track for One More and produced this raucous video.  Finally, HAIM’s new video for My Song 5. 

Bonus this week comes from a name that’s new to me, Hollysiz, with a heart-felt video for The light.

New Music Venues in Town

There’s been a lot of music venue activity happening around town.  Here’s a couple articles about the new music venues that have opened so far… 

Music Box (on the West Bank of the Flats)


I’ve been able to see a couple shows so far in this venue.  The seating for me is nice... for shows that you should be seated for.  It becomes a challenge with upbeat shows.

"This is the first show I've covered at the new venue on the west bank of Cleveland's Flats. It is a beautiful, wonderful place. The supper club is elegant, in an industrial sort of way, and the forced camaraderie from what I call a 'Benihana-style'' seating – all the tables have six seats, so you're almost definitely going to be seated next to a stranger – is actually a plus."

(Via. Shawn Colvin and Steve Earle fill Music Box with songs and stories (Concert review) |

Bevy in Birdtown (formerly the Winchester)

Bevy 01

I have yet to see a show here (or even go) but I’ll be excited to see what they’ve done with this space.

"New owners Patty Lim and Beth Scebbi of New Century Builders have completely refreshed the space. The bar area has new flooring, a new ceiling, fresh paint and custom-designed lighting crafted from old wine bottles. There are eight draft beer lines, and a new kitchen will allow for a full-service menu that is scheduled to start sometime in October.

'We felt that Madison Avenue is really going to be taking over,' says Lim. 'Detroit Avenue is at its peak, and this is the next phase of development in Lakewood.'"

(Via. new owners transform winchester music hall into the bevy with live music and food)

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Video Day #tzaupbeat

I just stumbled upon this video for Ways to Go from Grouplove, and glad I did - I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.  Also catching up with Alt-J’s next pair of new videos for Every Other Freckle (there’s also a girl version too).  La Roux makes you want to Kiss and Not Tell with her new video.

Bonus is a throwback band for me, The Rosebuds, with a new video for Blue Eyes.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Macy Gray (10/1/14)

While this show didn’t take much convincing for me to go - I was basically walking into this show blind.  I knew Macy’s hits, but hadn’t paid *any* attention to her recently.  Fortunately, I was going with probably one of her biggest fans in Cleveland who gave me a last minute crash course update.

This woman deserves respect.  She is very talented (and so is her band!) and very entertaining, despite the near-comatose crowd at the Music Box.  I would totally see her again, and give this show a 9 on the DAKS scale.

Macy Gray (10/1/14)

Macy Gray (10/1/14)

Erasure (9/28/14)

This was my third time seeing this venerable 80’s band - and maybe one of the best that are still producing and performing!  The music is just delicious.  Front row helped.

Erasure (9/28/14)

Erasure (9/28/14)

(first videos w/ my new iPhone!)

(and the rest of the songs…)

Astronautalis / Sarah Jaffe (9/24/14)

I’ve been following Sarah Jaffe for a while, but was surprised with her being paired with Astronautalis.  Seeing them live, it all made sense however.  First opening was Transit, a Canadian rapper (my favorite kind!).  He has some great lyrics… bought his CD for $5.  Wish I would have caught some video.

Transit (9/24/14)

Sarah was admittedly a little sick, but she still performed flawlessly - playing a lot new tracks from her Don’t Disconnect album (I got my vinyl signed!).

Sarah Jaffe (9/24/14)

Astronautalis was great.  While he may be easily compared to other white rappers, I think his talent allows him to stand on his own right.  He’s definitely good looking and knows how to engage an audience!

Astronautalis (9/24/14)

Com Truise (9/19/14)

We missed Islands on this double-header night at the Grog Shop.  Well, sorta missed them.  But we stayed around and caught as much of Com Truise as we could. The beats were tight.  I’m glad to see such a great turnout for this show.

Com Truise (9/19/14)

Shilpa Ray & Her Happy Hookers / She Keeps Bees (8/18/14)

Shilpa Ray & Her Happy Hookers returned to Cleveland, and back to the Beachland this time, co-headling with She Keeps Bees.  A great night of strong female talent!  But before the ladies, Jason Wyatt Frederick opened up with a strong set (and some great humor).

Jason Wyatt Frederick (9/18/14)

I was thinking this night, how I like music from bands who you can’t imagine them doing anything else but performing.  The passion that Shilpa brings to the stage, I can’t imagine her doing anything else.

Shilpa Ray & Her Happy Hookers (9/18/14)

Same with She Keeps Bees.  A great pairing. 

She Keeps Bees (9/18/14)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Tonight: Macy Gray @ Music Box

Not sure what I’m getting myself into tonight, but Macy Gray does have some new stuff out.  Not half bad!

108553 MacyGray 617

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Video Day #tzachill

Perfume Genius drops the mic on us once again with a visually spectacular video for Grid.  Eternal Summers has an epic (internal?) battle going on in this new video for Never Enough (and they’re coming to the Beachland on Oct. 11th).  Finally, Estelle’s newest video for Conqueror (can’t wait for new hew album!)


Bonus: Local wonders, Herzog, have fun with their wacky new video for Theme for Boys.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Tonight: Astronautalis & Sarah Jaffe @ Beachland Tavern

I’ve been following Sarah Jaffe for some time now, and I was a little suspect of her pairing (initially) with Astronautalis -  but it turns out that both artists defy simple categorization. Both artists are also worthy of seeing on their own - which means this will be a great night to have both.  See what you’re in for:
Astronautalis wide
IMG 5388

Monday, September 22, 2014

Bob Mould / Cymbals Eat Guitars (9/15/14)

I’ve said this a couple times now… “As a gay man in music, I feel like I should be seeing Bob Mould live.”  It’s a simple association I guess, but whatever.  He’s a legend - and he’s still putting out good stuff and rocking out live.  He deserves to be seen!  Cymbals Eat Guitars were opening, and felt like an appropriate match.  However, I’ll admit that this wasn’t quite my style… Loved being there, but just not my thing.  Here’s what I caught - in case it’s yours.

Cymbals Eat Guitars (9/15/14)

Bob Mould (9/15/14)

Brent Kirby & His Luck (9/13/14)

I scored some free tickets from a newsletter sign-up promotion that the Music Box carried earlier - and chose this show as the one to attend. I didn’t have much choice though, I was busy every other night, and didn’t even have much time to spend at this show either.  But despite not having a choice - I still would have picked this show anyway.  Brent’s a cool guy who’s doing cool shit in this town.

AND - this was my first show at the new Music Box venue, though we were only in the smaller of the two spaces.  Nice tables, nice chairs, nice stage… We didn’t have a chance to eat - but overall, things were very clean and nice.  But I kinda miss having some grit.

Brent Kirby & His Luck (9/13/14)

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Video Day #tzaupbeat

Another Bear in Heaven video for the excellent (and timely) Autumn.  Next up is some great, new Alex Metric... with a heart-warming true story, with a serious beat. alt-J is back with a great glimpse of adolescent fun in the video for Left Hand Free.


Bonus:  For this post, it’s Queen Diva, your besta believe-ah!  Big Freedia’s TV show just got picked up for two more seasons, so she’s doing something right.  Not my favorite track, but the video is slick and I’m still a big supporter.

Tomorrow: Com Truise @ Grog Shop [LATE SHOW]

Doors opening at 11:30 for the Com Truise show (ouch!).  But should be worth your wait as he puts down some great "slow-motion funk -- warped, bass-heavy tracks that are sludgy but leavened with bright synthesizer melodies.” (AMG)  How fun does that sound… Check out this bit below:

ComTruise 1

Tomorrow: Islands & TEEN @ Grog Shop [EARLY SHOW]

I won’t be hitting the whole Downtown Festival this weekend, but I will be doing the double-header at the Grog Shop tomorrow night.  Show starts at 8 for Islands (TEEN & Extra Spooky opening).  Should be an excellent show.

"Brooklyn's TEEN incorporate everything from psychedelic rock to '90s R&B into their experimental pop." (AMG).

TEENZi Brackbill 1


Islands is a Canadian band, born out of the Unicorns.  "Ski Mask, the band’s fifth album, is equal parts beauty and venom—an album that percolates with the kind of polymorphous pop and hooky, left-of-center rock songs that have long been the band’s stock and trade. This time around, however, the artful indie-pop comes with a decidedly melancholy punch."


This Weekend: Downtown Festival - FULL DETAILS

Cleveland is finally getting a major music festival!!!  …well, sorta.  Check it.


Downtown Festival was launched in 2011, commemorating Downtown Record's 5th Anniversary, and featured sold out performances from some of today’s hottest acts across multiple genres, including Santigold, Major Lazer, Miike Snow, A-Trak, White Denim and others, over 2 nights at New York’s Webster Hall and Terminal 5. In 2013 Downtown Festival returned to NYC, taking over 8 venues in downtown Manhattan with performances from Kendrick Lamar, Schoolboy Q, Purity Ring, Earl Sweatshirt, Ab-Soul, Sky Ferreira, DIIV, Trash Talk among others. Billboard summed up the ethos of the 2013 festival, saying "A young, Downtown Records-owned event that dispatches emerging artists across Manhattan’s Lower East Side – playing back-to-back sets for room[s] full of incidentally intimate strangers.” 

Downtown Festival featuring…

Friday, September 19:

The War On Drugs


Com Truise



Extra Spooky


Saturday, September 20:

Justin Townes Earle

Crash of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros



Full Details



The War On Drugs

Support: Califone
Friday, September 19
Doors 7pm / Show 8pm
Venue: Scene Stage at House of Blues

The War on Drugs is an American indie rock band from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, formed in 2005. The band consists of Adam Granduciel (vocals, guitar), David Hartley (bass, guitar), Robbie Bennett (keyboards, guitar) and Patrick Berkery (drums).

Founded by close collaborators Granduciel and Kurt Vile, The War on Drugs released their debut studio album, Wagonwheel Blues, in 2008. Vile departed shortly after its release to focus on his solo career.

The band's second studio album Slave Ambient was released in 2011 to critical acclaim and extensive touring. A third album, Lost in the Dream, was released in March 2014.

Artist Website:


Support: Extra Spooky, Teen Friday, September 19
Doors 7:00pm / Show 8:00pm Venue: Grog Shop

In July 2013, Nick Thorburn began hinting at a new Islands album. He soon posted a link to the band's website on Facebook revealing the upcoming release of a new album called Ski Mask. The first single, Wave Forms, was released in 2013 via SoundCloud. Released last September, Islands’ latest album, Ski Mask, showcases Thorburn at his “predictably unpredictable” best. A record that is equal parts beauty and venom, Ski Mask percolates with the kind of polymorphous pop and hooky, left-of-center rock songs that have long been the band’s stock and trade.


Artist Website:



Friday, September 19
Doors 11:30pm / Show 11:45pm Venue: Grog Shop

Com Truise is one of the many personas of producer and designer Seth Haley, born and raised in upstate New York and operating out of a 12’-overrun apartment in Princeton, New Jersey. An admitted synth obsessive, Com Truise is the maker of an experimental and bottom heavy style he calls “mid-fi synth-wave, slow-motion funk”.

Haley’s been making music on the side for roughly a decade—going through pseudonyms like toothbrushes (Sarin Sunday, SYSTM, Airliner)first as a DJ, and currently, as an excavator of softer, window-fogging synth-wave.

While subliminally informed by both parental record collections and hints of faded electronics product design, Haley’s Com Truise project isn’t just nostalgia capitalization. There are fragments (read: DNA strands) of Joy Division, New Order, and the Cocteau Twins, but it’s like you’re hearing them through the motherboard of a waterlogged Xbox—demented and modern. He’s got a way of making familiar things sound beautifully hand-smeared.

The first Com Truise release was the Cyanide Sisters EPdistributed for free on the AMdiscs labelwhere mellow stone-outs like “Sundriped” and “Slow Peels” sat next to harder IDM bangers (“BASF Ace” and “IWYWAW”) and bumpy alt-funk trips (“Norkuy” and “Komputer”). After that came a single “Pyragony/Trypyra,” and a series of eclectic podcast mixes titled “Komputer Cast.” Now comfortably situated amidst the Ghostly roster, he’s prepping his next warped pillage, and hopefully not changing that name again.

Artist Website:


Friday, September 19
Doors 7:30pm / Show 8:30pm Venue: Beachland Ballroom

Pomplamoose is an American musical duo which feature Californian multi-instrumentalists, real life couple Jack Conte and Nataly Dawn. The duo formed in the summer of 2008 and sold approximately 100,000 songs online in 2009. They are known for their diverse music style which the band themselves refuses to put a label towards.

In 2011, Pomplamoose began a weekly, interactive, half-hour webcast called “Hey, It's Pomplamoose: A Show about Pomplamoose and Other Things” that airs every Tuesday. After the March 29th show, the webcast was put on hiatus until their East Coast tour was completed. The tour included Ryan Lerman, Carlos Cabrera, and Lauren O'Connell as backing band and opening act. For the Washington, DC show, Pomplamoose opened for OK Go, also known for their YouTube videos.

On November 5, 2013, Pomplamoose launched its second season a three-part sequel to the band’s early years, including but not limited to: videos, a tour and an album (to be released July 29th).

Artist Website:



Justin Townes Earle

Support: Crash of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros Saturday, September 20
Doors 7pm / Show 8pm
Venue: Scene Stage at House of Blues

After two and a half years since his last release, Justin Townes Earle is back and pleased to announce his fifth studio album (and first ever on Vagrant Records!). Entitled Single Mothers, the record will be released nationwide on September 9th, 2014 and Justin will be on the road in the US throughout September and early October to support

Single Mothers is comprised of ten tracks that showcase exactly why Justin Townes Earle is considered a forefather of Contemporary Americana. As a recently married, sober man JTE writes from a point of maturity and content we’ve not seen before on past records. “One day I just realized it’s not cool to die young, and it’s even less cool to die after 30,” Justin laughs as he reflects on a life past and his new found clarity. What he’s created is an album that’s raw, honest and personal in a way he hasn’t touched upon since his debut EP, Yuma.

Once compared to a man who wears many suits JTE has experienced more than most, both personally and professionally, in thirty-two short years. Between releasing four full-length-critically-acclaimed albums, constant touring, multiple stints in rehab, being born Steve Earle’s son, amicable and not-so-amicable break-ups with record labels, and facing the trials and tribulations of everyday life, it’s safe to say JTE has quite the story to tell. Single Mothers serves as the perfect platform for such narrations.

Artist Website:


- Continued -


Saturday, September 20
Doors 9:00pm / Show 10:00pm Venue: Grog Shop

rjd2 originally began his career in Columbus, Ohio, DJing in 1993 with a pair of turntables bought from a friend. He claims his name originates from another friend who referenced him as "rjd2" in his raps, and the name stuck.

Originally working the role of DJ in the Columbus rap group MHz, he later signed to Bobbito Garcia's Fondle 'Em label, releasing the self-proclaimed "mix CD" Your Face Or Your Kneecaps. A year later he signed to El-P's record label Definitive Jux and released his solo debut album Deadringer to much acclaim. rjd2 later collaborated with Columbus rapper Blueprint under the name Soul Position, releasing Unlimited EP in 2002 and 8 Million Stories in 2003. He released his second solo album Since We Last Spoke on Definitive Jux in 2004, which blended hip-hop with elements of pop and was lauded as one of the year's Top 40 Albums by SPIN.

He later contributed a cover of "Airbag" by Radiohead for the 2006 album Exit Music - the same year that saw the release of the collaborative record, Magnificent City, with Aceyalone. Fully indulging his passion for pop, rjd2 released another solo album, The Third Hand, on XL Recordings and toured extensively through 2008.

The innovative producer’s 10-year career reached a marked turning point in 2009 after he scored “A Beautiful Mine,” the popular theme to the hit AMC television series, Mad Men. In early 2010, he dropped The Colossus - the first album to be released on his own label, RJ’s Electrical Connections. He has since reissued Your Face Or Your Knee Caps, The Horror, and Since We Last Spoke as well as a vinyl LP deluxe box set entitled 2002-2010 via his label.

Artist Website:


Saturday, September 20 Doors 7:30pm/ Show 8:30pm Venue: Beachland Ballroom

Listening to Marvelous Clouds, Aaron Freeman’s 2012 debut under his own name, fans might have felt that he was ignoring an elephant in his rooma drug-and-alcohol-related onstage flame-out that made viral headlines the year before. But Clouds, a deceptively chill Rod McKuen covers record, was just a warm-up for the artist once known as Gene Ween. In the opening minutes of FREEMAN, the self-titled debut from his new band, Freeman addresses addiction and its aftermath with the combination of merciless self-inventory and artful songcraft that earned Ween one of the most devoted fan bases in contemporary pop. This song, the unmistakably autobiographical “Covert Discretion,” is a quiet shocker. “Save your judgments for someone else,” Freeman sings. “Be grateful I saved me from myself.”

As bitter as it sounds, the track clears the air. FREEMAN represents a new beginning— Aaron Freeman’s first album of original material since disbanding Ween and getting sober—but it isn’t a record mired in its maker’s private struggles. It’s simply a collection of gorgeous, subtly offbeat songs—in other words, a continuation of the thread that runs through the entire Ween catalog. The lush psychedelic pop of “The English and Western Stallion”; the melancholy plea of “More Than the World”; the unflappable, Plastic Ono Bandesque blues-rock of “Gimmie One More”—these are songs that bear the unmistakable Aaron Freeman stamp.


Artist Website:


HOUSE OF BLUES: 308 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44114
Two Day Festival Pass $59 (General Admission Access at House of Blues & Grog Shop Downtown Festival concerts, Front of Line Access to ALL shows at House of Blues for Downtown Festival, Downtown Festival T-Shirt & Laminate.)

VIP Two Day Festival Pass $79 (VIP access for House of Blues Downtown Festival concerts, General Admission Access for the Grog Shop Downtown Festival Concerts, Foundation Room Access (Ages 21+) for both Friday and Saturday, Downtown Festival T-Shirt & laminate, Signed Vinyl from one of the headliners at Downtown Festival, Sound-check pre-party OR a meet and greet with Califone, Crash, RJD2 and Islands.)

Tickets are available for purchase at the following locations:, House of Blues Box Office,, all Ticketmaster outlets and Charge by Phone: 800.745.3000.
The House of Blues Box Office (308 Euclid Ave.) is open daily at 10 AM Monday thru Saturday.
For more information call 216.523.BLUE (2583).

GROG SHOP: 2785 Euclid Heights Blvd, Cleveland Heights, OH 44106 Islands: $12 advance / $14 day of show General Admission
Com Truise: $12 advance / $15 day of show General Admission
RJD2: $22 advance / $25 day of show General Admission

Tickets are available for purchase at the following locations: , Grog Shop club,, by phone 216.321.5588 for a $1.00 surcharge and various local retail outlets (see venue website for more information).

BEACHLAND BALLROOM: 15711 Waterloo Road, Cleveland, OH 44110 Pomplamoose: $13 advance / $15 day of show General Admission Freeman: $15 General Admission

Tickets are available for purchase at the following locations: , Beachland Ballroom club,, by phone 216-383-1124 for a $1.00 surcharge and various local retail outlets (see venue website for more information).