December Podcast Picks

Chris and Morgane Stapleton — a beautiful and formidable partnership.

Stream or download December Podcast Picks: December ’17 podcast picks

Howdy folks! We’re back! And so, for that matter, is Chris Stapleton, whose new album “From A Room, Volume 2” came out last Friday to the usual round of critical acclaim. We thought it appropriate to launch our December Podcast Picks with the song “Scarecrow In The Garden” because it shows off the beautifully matched voices of Chris and his secret weapon — his wife and musical partner Morgane Stapleton.

Whitney Rose’s new album, Rule 62, is creating a lot of buzz. She’ll be at Bunk Bar in Portland in February.

In fact, there’s an awful lot of wonderful singing on this collection of picks, which skews country in a major way. In the long while since we last put out a playlist, several of the artists included here have released great new records for you to discover and explore. And in the new year, several will be rolling into our town — Portland, Oregon, U.S.A. — and showing off their skills in the live setting.

So give it a spin, make some notes and support these acts when they come through your town. Here’s the playlist, enjoy:

Scarecrow In The Garden, Chris Stapleton
Wake Me In Wyoming, Whitney Rose
65 Days In L.A., Cody Jinks
A Little Pain, Margo Price
El Camino, Left Arm Tan
Highest Building, Anna Tivel
Mind Of Its Own, Miller & Sasser
Postcard, First Aid Kit
Thirteen Silver Dollars, Colter Wall
Troubled End, Jade Jackson
Oh, What A Bummer, Micah Schnabel
If I Could Make You My Own, Dori Freeman
Marfa Lights, Paul Cauthen
Fat And Famous, Ashley McBryde
Diggin’ Holes, Brent Cobb
Jackpot, Nikki Lane
Wannabe, Taylor Kingman
How Tall The Glass, Kristina Murray

Review of Wannabe by Taylor Kingman

Wannabe
by Taylor Kingman
(2017, Mama Bird)

By ERIC KOTILA

“I wannabe strong. That time I proved I was right, I was wrong.”

I love records where the artist opens up and shares everything they have. For some songwriters (John Moreland, Willy Tea Taylor, Micah Schnabel), it just comes naturally and they do it all the time. Others (Jason Isbell, BJ Barham) share it from a period in their life when there is growth. Taylor Kingman is among the latter, and it’s evident on his solo debut, “Wannabe.”

I first met Taylor at the 2013 Wildwood MusicFest & Campout as lead singer of The Hill Dogs and, I must be honest here, I was not impressed. A late start to his showcase set and a missed slot at the Sunday morning review showed me a kid still trying to figure things out while having the time of his life. Soon afterward he was spending a lot more time here in Portland and a few friends who also saw the Wildwood performance said I should get to know him better and see him for the talented, good-natured kid that he is.

Getting to know more about Taylor the person, I discovered a kind spirit with a big smile who truly loves music. We had him and The Hill Dogs on the podcast (see Episode #72) and I could tell immediately he had figured stuff out. He launched an open mic on Sundays at The Laurelthirst Pub, challenging all comers with a new songwriting theme each week. He started hanging and playing with the regular musicians there as well. This is where we have seen him shedding his old skin for new. His songwriting is amazing and has matured so much. We all witnessed a rebirth at Wildwood 2016. The Hill Dogs were perfect and blew everyone away.

Now Taylor has made an honest and truly great solo record.

“I wannabe forgiven for everything I knew. I wannabe true.”

To purchase a CD, cassette or digital download of “Wannabe” by Taylor Kingman, visit his page at the Mama Bird Recording Co. website. Taylor will be performing songs from “Wannabe” and also playing with his band TK and The Holy Know Nothings on Wednesday, Nov. 29 at Mississippi Studios.

Listen to “Wannabe” on Spotify, courtesy of Mama Bird Recording Co.:

TMFWP Special: Live From The Helm, Vol. 3

Mamma Coal celebrated the release of her widely anticipated album “Raven Haired Vixen” with a visit to The Helm. That’s 2016 Oregon Music Hall of Fame inductee Paul Brainard riding shotgun. Photo by Anne Marie for Local Hero Media (www.localheromedia.com).

Stream or download Live From The Helm, Vol. 3:  Live From The Helm Vol. 3

There were a lot of things about 2016 we’d like to forget — it was a year of staggering losses for both the music world and the great wide world in general. Still, our team at That Much Further West Podcast had much to be thankful for, namely the incredible roster of guests we hosted at The Helm for podcast episodes this year.

From start to finish, this year marked a great leap forward for the podcast. The team decided to narrow the focus, dedicating the entirety of each episode to our individual guests. That way we learned more about their histories, their influences, their hopes and dreams and their immediate plans for the future. All celebrated remarkable successes this year and we were happy to promote their fine work and proud to host them in our subterranean home in Portland — The Helm!

Nick Foltz of Lowlight added his usual heavy dose of cool to The Helm scene in 2016. Photo by Anne Marie for Local Hero Media (www.localheromedia.com).

We were pleased to rope in some more out-of-towners this year, including Seattle’s Evening Bell and national acts John Moreland and Aaron Lee Tasjan. We also were thrilled to highlight the great work being down by local longtime friends like Mamma Coal, Nick Foltz of Lowlight and Birger Olsen. We even made some great new friends in Kory Quinn and Taylor Kingman of the Hill Dogs, and hooked up with local legends such as Willy Vlautin of Richmond Fontaine and the mighty Fernando. All were incredibly inspiring to the team.

Still, 2016 will be remembered for our many musical losses, one big electoral loss and another that’s particularly personal to our team. We said goodbye the father of our Hoot, our friend Chuck Noland, a loss that proved particularly devastating. That’s why we wrap up “Live From The Helm, Vol. 3” with a beautiful tribute to Chuck by Maria Francis and Jeff Overbo of Silver Lake 66. In a year full of tears, there wasn’t a dry eye in The Helm during that performance.

But as we reflect on the past year before turning the calendar page, enjoy this collection of songs we proudly share here with you. We’ll see you in 2017!

Here’s the playlist:

Memphis Rain, Aaron Lee Tasjan
Our Horse Barn, Kris Stuart
Ride Through The Night, Mamma Coal
Three Brothers Roll Into Town, Willy Vlautin
In The Shadow Of The Tower Of Babel, Kory Quinn
Devil’s House, Evening Bell
A Lovely Conversation, The Harmed Brothers
Life Of The Party, Stars Of Cascadia
You Look As Sweet, Birger Olsen
Mother Mountain, The Hill Dogs
Bloodlines, Lowlight
This Very Hour, McDougall
Wasted And Waiting My Saturday Night, Lewi & Anita
Late Bloomer, Matthew Lindley
True Instigator, Fernando
Walk Away, Silver Lake 66

Our podcast hosts, at home in The Helm, left to right: Mike Lee, Eric Kotila and Phil Favorite.

Episode #72 featuring The Hill Dogs

Taylor-3

Taylor Kingman, gearing up to lead the Hill Dogs at Wildwood MusicFest & Campout. Photo by Anne Marie for Local Hero Media

 

Stream or download Episode #72:  Episode 72 w/ Hill Dogs

The fifth-annual Wildwood MusicFest & Campout in Willamina, OR, USA, is just a few weeks away, and to kick off our coverage The Hill Dogs visited The Helm to share some songs and provide an update on what they’ve been up to since their festival appearance three years ago.

Formed while the members were still in high school, the Hill Dogs have held together and honed their chops to become one of the Northwest’s best rockin’ folk bands. Led by singer, songwriter and guitarist Taylor Kingman, the band put out its second album, “Hang In There,” earlier this year and is currently recording a third record expected out next year.

Kingman talks a bit about the holding the band together while the group enters early adulthood, and also about taking advantage of opportunities to play a few solo shows since moving to Portland from small-town Oregon. While taking the lead as the Hill Dogs main songwriter, he said he still works collaboratively with his mates as the band’s sound continues to evolve.

He’s also joined by fellow ‘Dogs Kayla Stroik (viola, vocals) and Lucas Benoit (guitar) for a pair of live performances of new songs expected to be on the next Hill Dogs record. And if these performances aren’t enough to stoke the interest of festival goers, Taylor’s stories from the band’s previous experience at Wildwood should be reason enough for folks to keep their eyes out for The Hill Dogs at this year’s festival (hint: be sure to hydrate).

So dial it up and spread the word — it’s The Hill Dogs on Episode #72 of That Much Further West Podcast! Here’s the playlist:

Mindhole, The Hill Dogs
Mother Mountain (Live In The Helm), The HIll Dogs
Landlocked Blues, Bright Eyes
Two-Headed Boy, Neutral Milk Hotel
From, Dr. Dog
Burning Bright (Live In The Helm), The Hill Dogs
Thick Was The Night, The Hill Dogs