A-Sides with Jon Chattman: “August” with The Hollows & “The Devil” and Audra Mae
Smorgasbord is a terribly undervalued word. It encompasses so much by saying so little. The word comes into play – for me anyway – when I think of indie roots rockers The Hollows. The band, who released a self-titled EP last week, features members who play a variety of instruments – from banjo to horns – that the best way to describe them may very well be a “smorgasbord” of musical talent. As their press release clearly states each member of this “freewheeling hootenany of a band” contribute to the writing and arranging of the material, which serves up a fresh, rootsy, arguably offbeat sound.
The band, which prides itself in not having a “front man,” consists of college buds Erik Saxvik, David Paarlberg, Jeffrey Kurtze and Daniel Kwiatkowski along with Rob Morrison and Justin Aaronson. The six buds came to the Music Conservatory of Westchester late last month to perform “August” off their new EP and take part in a typical “A-Sides” lowkey, informal chat.
Watch. Listen. Love.
Chat with Chatt
Like The Hollows, Audra Mae provides your ears with authentic, totally original musical flavor that doesn’t sound like everybody and their mother’s brother. The Oklahoma City folk rocker has been writing for others for years (Susan Boyle among them), and it’s clearly her time to be front and center now. The distant relative of the immortal Judy Garland just dropped her sophomore album “Audra Mae & The Almighty Sound” a few months back – the follow-up to 2010’s “The Happiest Lamb.” While she has an EP and two full-length albums out, Mae may actually be better known for some key covers in some cool television shows and films. Her take on Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again” was featured on “The Good Wife” earlier this year, and her cover of Van Morrison’s “Crazy Love” landed in the Jason Segal-starrer “The Five Year Engagement.” She’s also recorded with All American Rejects.
If you still don’t know Mae, you soon will. Plus, you can see her all over the place. She’s been on the road for months, and is currently supporting Cory Branan on tour. Anyway, she filmed an A-Sides session with me at the Conservatory last month. Watch her performance of “My Friend The Devil” and an interview below. Watch her performance of “Old Italian Love Song” on asidesmusic.com now.
“My Friend The Devil”
“Old Italian Love Song”
About A-Sides with Jon Chattman
Jon Chattman’s music series features artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometimes humorous) way. No bells, no whistles — just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, I’m hoping this is refreshing.