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Roy's Photo I'm a veteran KDHX programmer, host of Feel Like Going Home every Wednesday morning from 7-10 a.m. Central. Follow my blog for news and reviews of recent and vintage indie rock, twang, soul, folk and everything in between. And come visit me on Myspace and Twitter, Posterous and Facebook. And here are my Top Ten Albums of 2010.

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All Aboard for Fun Times: St. Louis show highlights for 1/4-1/6

All Aboard for Fun Times Train

After a busy 2012 wrap-up, 2013 is off to a somewhat laid-back start Friday — but it picks up steam:

Friday, January 4

Box of Nerves
Venice Café 1903 Pestalozzi 9 p.m. start, $? (usually 5) Smoke-free

A fun country, rock and more grab bag of originals and covers from Box of Nerves.

Saturday, January 5

A free afternoon show of vintage jazz/blues-styled sounds from Rum Drum Ramblers happens at Blues City Deli (2438 McNair).

This runs 1-3:30, and is free (all-ages). Smoke-free.

If you plan to attend the big Schlafly anniversary party at the Pageant (6161 Delmar) with the Bottle Rockets, Bunnygrunt and Old Lights, know this: Passes were given out at above-capacity levels (anticipating “no-show” occurrences), so those who hope to show up later in the show may be turned away — even with the passes.

Doors at 7 p.m., and 21+ only.

The Trophy Mules / Fred Friction / Butcher Holler
Schlafly Tap Room 2100 Locust 9 start Free (minors only with adults) Smoke-free

A mix of country, folk and rock sounds from the Trophy Mules.

Heartfelt, booze-soaked balladry from Fred Friction.

Butcher Holler offers rock, rockabilly and country sounds.

Sunday, January 6

Lemmons (5800 Gravois) hosts a bill headlined by Chicago roots-rockers the Shams Band. Also appearing are rockers this City of Takers and Bob Reuter’s Lost Monkey, along with the aforementioned Fred Friction.

This starts at 7 p.m., with a $5 cover (21+ only). Smoke-free.

A four-act bill of punk-pop — touring acts the Queers and the Manges, along with Bass Amp & Dan-O and the Haddonfields — play at Fubar (3108 Locust).

Doors at 7, show at 7:30, with a $12 cover (all-ages). Smoke-free.

Troubadour Dali / Little Big Bangs
Off Broadway 3509 Lemp 7:30 door/8 start Free (21+ only) Smoke-free

Psych-rockers Troubadour Dali hold another January residency here — this is the first of three shows.

Energetic, noisy post-punk from Little Big Bangs.

Your humble servant,

Dick Caveat

Thursday morning music news: Big Boi gets Grinchy, Mac Lethal gets angry and Willie Ackerman passes on

KDHX kicks of its year-end roundups with big lists of top spins, DJ top 10 albums, songs of the year and more.

The Magnolia Avenue Studios have been jumping, with new sessions from Cory Chisel, Middle Class Fashion and Ellis Paul streaming now.

The second volume of KDHXmas, a furiously festive compilation of St. Louis (and beyond) artists doing original and classic holiday tunes, is out.

Big Boi reading “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”? Yes. Watch.

If reports are to be believed, Charles Mingus made the greatest eggnog ever.

Don’t get your hopes up for a Nirvana reunion any time soon.

Norton Records’ warehouse was hit hard by superstorm Sandy. Yo La Tengo to the rescue.

After the tragedy at Newtown, Conn., U.S. radio isn’t so keen on Ke$ha’s “Die Young.”

Interwebs sensation Mac Lethal cuts an excellent takedown of the Westboro Baptist Church. Watch.

Billboard looks back at a “tumultuous year” in the music biz.

Frank Ocean’s deadbeat dad is shaking him down for $1 million.

One of the finest drummers in Nashville, Willie Ackerman, has died at the age of 73.

Get a sneak preview of the forthcoming Flaming Lips concert film. Trailer very much NSFW.

One of the greatest rock collections ever, “Nuggets,” has turned 40. Lenny Kaye looks back on his handiwork.

The dance music experts at Resident Advisor weigh in with their 50 favorite tracks of the year.

The world doesn’t need another zombie TV show, but if it must have one, it should have a soundtrack by Mogwai.

Michael Hall tells the epic story of “Trigger,” the legendary guitar of Willie Nelson.

The LA Times shares a playlist for the end of the world.

Just who is PSY and how did he come to be the king of the pop world? The Stool Pigeon knows.

The New York Times profiles the great Eddie Palmieri.

This is not an Onion headline: Man arrested for stealing a Miley Cyrus sex doll.

Thursday morning music news: Paul McCartney cuts some slack with Nirvana, Frank Ocean cuts some Radiohead trees and Ravi Shankar passes away

RIP Ravi Shankar. NPR celebrates his music with five great recordings.

You heard right: Paul McCartney joined the surviving members of Nirvana at the 12/12/12 concert for Sandy relief. And you know what? It did not suck.

You heard wrong: Yoko Ono did not cover Katy Perry.

Tonight, Mavis Staples goes caroling with Stephen Colbert and Jeff Tweedy.

Everybody Taste picks its favorite album covers of the year.

What’s the hottest (and most obnoxiously-named) dance move of 2012? Slutdropping.

Noel Murray of the AV Club picks his top 40 songs of 2012.

Ann Powers’ list of best albums and songs of the year is always worth a read.

Is the Knife really getting ready to release a new album? It appears so.

Random audiophile review generator: Operational!

James Brown + 2Pac + Quentin Tarantino = Mashup gold.

Just what I didn’t want for Christmas, but I’ll take it anyway: James Murphy and Arcade Fire are making an album.

I’ve got no use for reggaeton but Cuba has gone too far.

Mexican-American singer and TV star Jenni Rivera has died in a plane crash.

Frank Ocean covers Radiohead. Watch.

The Delfonics absolutely still got it. Listen.

RIP Huw Lloyd Langton of Hawkwind.

The National recently debuted two new songs. Watch.

The Guardian tells the story behind one of the greatest modern holiday songs, “Fairytale of New York.”

Who knew Cat Power was so damn funny?

Thursday morning music news: Year-end listmania revs up, Grammys reveal nominees and Dave Brubeck and Mickey Baker pass on

Jazz maestro Dave Brubeck has died. He would have been 92 today.

At the Guardian, Brubeck’s biographer Philip Clark compiles a list of greatest hits, with video.

Who knows what Brubeck’s last words were, but here are the final statements (and tweets) of other musicians, gone too soon.

Grammy nominations are out, with Mumford & Sons, Frank Ocean and Taylor Swift leading the way.

Spin, Rolling Stone and Stereogum publish their 50 best albums of the year.

Not to be outdone, the Awl picks 100 fantastic (not great) songs (and more) from 2012.

Dummy picks its top five labels of 2012.

Break out your sharpies: XLR8R reconsiders the art of the mixed CD.

Got writer’s block? Electric Literature has the Spotify playlist cure.

RIP Mickey “Guitar” Baker.

Barack Obama is the president. He’s also the king of standup and a Zeppelin fan. Watch.

The New York Times profiles Graham Parker.

M.I.A. leaks a new song to fans on Twitter.

Das Racist splits, hipsters weep.

Jack White vs. Lady Gaga vs. tempest in a tabloid.

iTunes makes its way to Russia, Turkey and South Africa.

Shazam thinks it can see the future. Apparently French Montana and Becky G are going to be really, really huge.

Relive the 15 minutes of fame (and helicopters and yachts) that was Kim Dotcom.

Fleetwood Mac announces 35 tour dates for 2013. Tantalizing, St. Louis-friendly routing option on April 12.

Congrats to Alicia Keys, who has just scored her fifth No. 1 album.

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds release a new song. Listen.

The “West of Memphis” soundtrack will feature Bob Dylan, Lucinda Williams, Henry Rollins, Band of Horses and the aforementioned Mr. Cave.

Outkast isn’t coming back any time soon.

Let’s say you’re in a band and you somehow save up two grand. (Yeah, I know, but humor me.) What do you spend it on? Hint: Beer and weed is the wrong answer.

‘We’re in the throes of a new folk revival’ An interview with Ryan Spearman

Sara Finke

Ryan Spearman is many things in many musical moods, but all his roles show a passion for setting the spark of innovation to the good tinder of tradition.

A singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, band leader, solo artist and teacher, Spearman was born and raised in St. Peters, Mo. and after a stint in Colorado with the band High on the Hog, he’s continued to make his home and his music in St. Louis.

When Spearman and Pokey LaFarge take the stage at the Sheldon Concert Hall on Friday, November 30 for the Folk School Grand Celebration, they’ll be doing what comes naturally — making music the old-time way – and while they’ll make it look easy, it most certainly isn’t. It takes years of hard work to play country, blues, folk and swing as well as they do.

I met Spearman for coffee to get a preview of the Sheldon show and to catch up on his current musical endeavors.

Roy Kasten: When did you first meet Pokey?

Ryan Spearman: The first time I met Pokey was when I moved back into the city about four years ago. I had just come back from Colorado and I had been living out in the country in Herman [Mo.] for two years. I’d been hearing about Pokey but hadn’t seen him. I caught him at BB’s, and a mutual friend introduced us. Pokey knew who I was, he knew my history. Our musical paths had been crossing for a while. He’d seen my band [High on the Hog] before.

After that I’d see him every once in a while and we’d talk about our mutual musical histories, but we’d never played together until last year at the Sheldon for the 10 year anniversary for the Folk School.

The idea was to get the two of us to just play together. We’d been talking about. I thought it would be fun and people would enjoy it. With Pokey being so busy we don’t get to practice much. He’ll come to town and we’ll spend six hours and then he’ll be gone. This year we’ve had one eight-hour session so far.

Did you feel like you had a shared base of musical knowledge? Did you know the same tunes?

Yeah. What Pokey does on stage and what I do on stage, it seems disparate to the average listener, but we both have similar musical histories, what we’re into and the different types of music we play. That’s the other reason we wanted to get together. Pokey will do stuff that I play and I’ll do more what he plays. Last year we had him on the mandolin. Our interests are similar and our experience with country blues and old time music, and then Pokey’s recent obsession with country swing — I had just been getting into the same kind of stuff in Colorado.

At this point, it’s a perverse challenge, to see if we can put together a set and make it interesting, and make it sound good.

Read more

Thursday morning music news: Wyman and Taylor turn back the clock, Low turns to Jeff Tweedy and Austin Peralta, Martin Fay and Earl Carroll pass on

You know that lottery thing? Something about a cool half billion? Here’s what you can spend it on. Or this.

Bill and Mick (the other one) are back.

Doo-wop great Earl (Speedo) Carroll has passed away at the age of 75.

“Rage Against the Machine XX” gets remastered and Revolver shares it.

God save LargeHearted Boy and his massive master list of 2012 Year-End Music Lists.

Have a very metal Christmas.

Have a very Bonnie Prince Billy Christmas.

Pianist Austin Peralta, a collaborator with Flying Lotus, has died at the age of 22.

When does sampling become plagiarism? Study the case of Araabmuzik and decide for yourself.

Richard Marx has just become the most hilarious drunk musician tweeter ever.

Behold the fruitiest music list ever.

How does one “lose” a Jimi Hendrix album anyway?

What are the rarest UK releases? The Guardian (UK, natch) finds out.

Remember that time Suzanne Somers met Wire on the Late Show? Dangerous Minds does.

Is Spotify ripping off artists? Is the music biz? David Macias of Thirty Tigers runs the actual numbers and mounts a partial defense.

The Record interviews Spencer Manio, not exactly a household name, but one influential dude.

Martin Fay, founding fiddler for the Chieftains, has died at age 76.

Daily Swarm indulges in a good old-fashioned turkey shoot.

Spike Lee made a documentary about Michael Jackson’s “Bad.” Watch.

Low turns 20 and throws a party with Jeff Tweedy. OK, maybe not a party, but still.

The New Yorker resurrects the Grateful Dead. OK, maybe not a resurrection, but still.

In other birthday news, MIDI turns 30. The BBC looks back on the most important musical invention since the lipstick pickup.

Shuggie Otis returns. Watch.

Massive Attack mashes up its influences. Listen.

Talk of the Nation chats with Dolly Parton about her new, dreamy book.

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds “Push That Sky Away.”

Signs of the apocalypse #666: Forbes has a music blog.

Once seen, they cannot be unseen.

Thursday morning music news: ‘Loveless’ turns Japanese, Yo La Tengo turns on and Major Harris and Cleve Duncan pass away

The first round of SXSW 2013 bands is out.

RIP Major Harris. The Detroit soul man has passed away at the age of 65.

Listen to Billy Bragg deliver the John Peel Lecture for the BBC.

Billboard considers how the 2012 elections will impact the music biz.

Holy benefit concerts: Bruce, Kayne, Billy, Alicia, Paul and Roger will be in the same arena at the same time for post-Sandy relief.

Long-form journalism is Uncool and it has a Kickstarter.

And speaking of long-players, Jeff Weiss’ long day’s journey into Alaska’s music scene is a great read.

Shuggie Otis hits the road, but alas, no St. Louis date as of yet.

Everyone loves harmony. Wired explains why.

The weirdest album of the year is still Beck’s “Song Reader,” which can only be “heard” by playing the songs yourself. So The New Yorker takes up the challenge.

When it comes to streaming royalties, the math really doesn’t work.

The brilliant graphic artist/cartoonist Krent Able takes aim at all your rock ‘n’ roll heroes.

Pun resistance is futile: Brandon Flowers wilts.

What to make of the Japanese tribute to My Bloody Valentine’s “Loveless”?

NPR profiles A&M records.

The Independent hangs with Brian Eno in the studio.

Cleve Duncan, the voice of “Earth Angel,” has died at age 77.

Dear crafters/artists who like to makes stuff from old records: The bar has been raised.

Documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock — of “Super Size Me” etc. — is making a One Direction movie.

Yo La Tengo announces first new album in four years. Great cover.

The RFT picks the 10 best music photographers in St. Louis. Complex goes national.

Sufjan Stevens is really into Christmas.

What to get the cougar who has everything?: A Rick Springfield interactive app, of course.

Thursday morning music news: WFMU returns to the air, Dave Grohl returns to the skins and Elliott Carter and Mitch Lucker pass on

Avant-garde composer Elliott Carter has died at the age of 103.

How did Sandy impact the New York music scene? The Daily Swarm counts the ways and Billboard runs the numbers.

Sandy knocked WFMU in New York off the air. The indie radio station is back but still in dire straits.

Mariah Carey brings it on home for President Barack Obama.

Nelly turns 38 and shares “Scorpio Season,” a new mixtape.

The mind boggles at the possible puns so we’ll just quote Billboard: “Civil Wars Cancel Tour, Cite ‘Internal Discord, Irreconcilable Differences’”

Celebrate 25 years of Acid Jazz at the Guardian.

No Doubt comes to its senses and ditches the “Looking Hot” video.

RIP Mitch Lucker of Suicide Silence. Learn about the memorial fund for his daughter Kenadee.

NPR pays tribute to Meshell Ndegeocello’s new and excellent tribute to Nina Simone.

What would a single-album, hybrid, mashup of the entire Fugazi catalogue sound like? Disquiet finds out.

Sigur Rós has a homecoming and treats Iceland to a new song. Watch.

Flavorwire shares 25 photos of rock stars just hanging out and stuff.

Be a fly on the wall at the Patti Smith and Neil Young powwow.

Here’s hoping Frightened Rabbit’s new album won’t be as dull as its title, “Pedestrian Verse.”

The Beastie Boys’ Ad-Rock contributes new music to “Off the Rails” at the New York Times.

When Dave Grohl retired Foo Fighters, who would have guessed he’d be back with Queens of the Stone Age?

Thinking about a trip to Berlin to hit the clubs? Think again.

Behold: M.I.A. “The Book.”

Skeleton Vampire Weekend performs a new song on Kimmel.

Who knew the 1% were so damn into Radiohead?

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