From sweet and smooth classics, to new names, to old names with new music...the focus here, is to shine a little light on some damn fine music.

I'll find it. You can listen, review, or tell me I wouldn't know good music if it kicked me in the ass. I personally don't give a shit.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Somebody's Darling Talks Music, CMJ

Opening up with "Bad Bad," from their just released Adult Roommates album, Somebody's Darling began an afternoon set of a CMJ Music Marathon showcase. The Dallas based band, featuring the bold, bluesy vocals of Amber Farris have paid their dues over the past seven years. With a heavy touring schedule as both openers and headliners, an appearance at SXSW, and now CMJ in New York, Somebody's Darling have followed a path which offers them a sustained shelf life in a business of blink-and-you-missed-it bands.

If the new album has a different sound and feel to it credit the collaborative writing of the band, and the willingness to try every musical suggestion offered in an effort to hit that point of nirvana when you step back and say "yeah, that's it." The process seems to be working.

For some time now there has been a resurgence of the blues, though the form is evolving through the new blood who have taken their influences from other genres as well. Somebody's Darling takes up the neo-blues flag and throws in a ballsy rhythm section, guitar licks refined just enough from a garage band feel to appreciate the skill behind them, and keys that punch in just when you want them to. Mix all that together, throw in those big vocals, and what you end up with is a grinding, no-holds barred southern rocking blues band. Tasty indeed.

Before their afternoon performance, I sat down with Amber Farris and bass player Wade Cofer to talk about the long road they travel.

For the full interview jump over to "Somebody's Darling Talks Music, CMJ" over at

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Joan Jett Honored by Little Kids Rock

What would you do if you’re an elementary school teacher and you watch funding for music education decrease year after year? If you are David Wish, you basically say “I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore.”He initiated local after-school music classes, but soon realized the need was larger than his immediate area. At that point, he founded Little Kids Rock, a national not-for-profit organization which offers schoolchildren access to music classes and instruments at no cost.

Each year the organization holds a fundraiser honoring a “Rocker of the Year,” and at the same time showcases some of the extremely talented kids who have benefited from the Little Kids Rock program. This year Joan Jett was honored for her work with the ‘Modern Band” program which teaches kids different musical styles.

Produced by Maureen and Steven Van Zandt, the event held at Manhattan’s Hammerstein Ballroom, featured a silent and not-so silent auction, speeches detailing the work of the organization, an impressive list of rockers who stopped by to sing a song from Jett’s extensive catalog, and a group of kids who sang from their hearts and blew away the room with their talent. And even though the pros all brought their “A” game, this night was about the kids.

For the rest of the story please jump over to "Joan Jett Honored by Little Kids Rock" at Onstage Magazine.

Monday, October 20, 2014

CMJ Music Marathon Opens in NYC

As if the New York City music scene wasn’t already in overdrive, 1400 band performances are about to drive the city’s noise ordinances into the red zone as the CMJ Music Marathon opens its five day run beginning tomorrow. In over eighty venues spread out across Manhattan and Brooklyn, CMJ will host artists from every musical genre.

After picking up a press pass and checking out the press party at the CMJ Penthouse, it will be time to get to work. With an overwhelming amount of music from which to choose, figuring out a game plan is the hard part. The mobile CMJ Music Marathon app has been extremely helpful, searching by artist, venue, or date brings up all the info you could need. While not every band I’ve been listening to has been exciting enough to check out their show, I’ve found more than enough music to keep me busy watching and writing about for the entire five days of the marathon.

I’m looking forward to a couple of interviews set up through Big Picture Media, the official media company for CMJ. The first is with a bluesy band out of Dallas, Somebody’s Darling. With the release of their third album, the band is fast becoming a favorite in the neo-blues tide rolling up from the south. Another band I am excited to talk with and watch is The Suffers, a wild ten piece band out of Houston. Behind the huge vocals of Kam Franklin, are horns, percussion, guitars, and keys, all throwing down a rock-soul-r&b gumbo. So much fun to be had, and that is only part of one day.

OnStage will be covering the CMJ Music Marathon and reporting on what’s good and what’s not. It’s now 34 years running for CMJ, which is not only a music party of epic proportions, it’s a meeting place for people within the industry to get an intense primer into what is happening right now. Starting on Tuesday, each band in the CMJ Music Marathon lineup has a chance to be the one everyone talks about. OnStage will have ongoing reports on which bands are worth a listen.


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Jim Peterik, His Words and Music

In talking to songwriters over the past several years, it becomes clear that although the end result is the same, the methods for pulling a song together can be very different. Some start with a guitar riff, and some have words just waiting to be put to music. Some get on their knees and pray for inspiration, and others, like Jim Peterik, can pretty much find inspiration everywhere.

Jim Peterik writes a lot of music, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends. You may have heard of one or two of his songs: “Eye Of The Tiger” for Survivor, “Vehicle” for The Ides of March, “Rockin’ Into The Night” and most every other charting song for .38 Special. But wait, there’s more… so much more.

Jim Peterik is also a published author. In addition to writing the very successful ‘Songwriting for Dummies,” he has just published his autobiography, aptly titled “Through the Eye of the Tiger.” The book covers all aspects of his life, from nerdy kid living in the suburbs of Chicago to Grammy Award winning and Academy Award nominated composer.

In support of his autobiography, Peterik was the center of attention at The Cutting Room in NYC for a book release party. Proving that not all rock stars are made equal, Peterik walked in on time, and greeted everyone in the room like an old friend, asking questions and remembering names. After an hour of working the room, it was time for Peterik to slip into his comfort zone. It was time for a little music.

For the story of the rest of the night, please jump over to "Jim Peterik, His Words and Music" over at