Music

​A Carolina blue collar love story

by Sabrina Hornung | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | August 2nd, 2018

Carolina Story-photograph by Laura Partain

The story of Ben and Emily Roberts could be summed up best as a blue collar love story. The husband and wife Americana duo spend close to half of their year on the road but there’s more to their setlist than filling the world with silly love songs.

“I love a good love song but a lot of our songs are very personal but they’re more about our life. The ups, downs, moments of discouragement, and the small victories along the way.” Said Ben Roberts.

High Plains Reader: How did the two…

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​5th Annual Bohemian Family Ramble

by Hee Han | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | August 1st, 2018

Bohemian ramble - photograph by Holly Diestler

“The Bohemian Family Ramble was created to offer the Quarterly, Fargo-Moorhead’s Grateful Dead tribute band, a fourth place to perform in a family friendly outdoor setting. The Ramble has since become an event where local, regional musicians, artists and lovers of music converge to make a weekend of beautiful melody,” Tracey Sand, Co-host of the Bohemian Family Ramble, said. 

The Ramble has a reputation for promoting local and regional artists with music, camping and…

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​Long live the King

by James Osborne | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 26th, 2018

Desgin by Raul Gomez

In 1986, Movile Cave was discovered in rural Romania. Hermetically sealed for 5.5 million years, the ecosystem is unlike any other on earth. The oxygen levels were much lower, the CO2 much higher, the temperature hovers around 80°F and the walls are covered in dense layers of fungus and microbes. It’s a marvel in isolated evolution: eyeless spiders, albino woodlice, water scorpions, etc. Of the 48 species discovered in Movile Cave, 33 were found nowhere else in the world.

The…

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​No blues for Varsity

by Sabrina Hornung | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 25th, 2018

Varsity - photograph by Kristina Pedersen

High Plains Reader had the opportunity to speak with Stephanie Smith and Patrick Stanton of the Chicago based Indie-pop band Varsity.

High Plains Reader: How did Varsity come to be?

Stephanie Smith: We all sort of grew up playing music, but none of us studied music in school, none of us went to college for music or anything. So we kind of all met up again back in Chicago after school. Pat and I met in college and we kind of met Dylan in college our guitar player. The Stolz brothers on…

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​One for the girls

by Sabrina Hornung | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 25th, 2018

Desdamona

When St. Paul based rapper Desdamona first emerged on the hip hop scene in the Twin Cities in the mid 90s she had a tough time securing a foothold. 

“Getting on the scene was hard and I did experience some sexism in that realm because I was a woman, like kind of dismissing me, or listening to me talk but not actually do what I wanted to do. I had someone say to me that they didn’t work with female artists, which sounds crazy that someone would say that but that was like 1995/96…

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​Fiddling around with Gaelynn Lea

by Sabrina Hornung | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 18th, 2018

Gaelynn Lea - photograph by Raul Gomez

We had a chance to chat with Duluth native Gaelynn Lea at Winnipeg Folk Festival. Not only did she tell us how she developed her sound she told us about her experience winning the NPR Tiny Desk Concert and the trials and tribulations of touring life with a disability.

Gaelynn Lea: I’ve been playing violin for 24 years. I started in fifth grade. An orchestra came to my school and I remember really liking it and thinking... next year I need to join up with orchestra. This is awesome. I…

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​Relive Your End-Of-The-Century Punk Rock Fantasies

by Phil Hunt | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 18th, 2018

Ralphs Reunion - Battle at Sea 2005In 2005, the city of Moorhead forced a new vision of downtown on the corner of Main and 4th Street. Wine bars, bistros and yoga studios, I guess, were the thing, and punk-supported dive bars were not. Moorhead successfully gave Ralph’s the boot, saddening hundreds of local music fans and Ralph’s patrons who appreciated its homey, rough-hewn, clubhouse atmosphere.

“Back then I think I pretty much always got a pitcher of Bud,” Benjamin Erickson, a founding member of FUP (who play…

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​Digging a Prairie Pothole

by John Showalter | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 18th, 2018

Boreal Gardens performing at Prairie Pothole 2017 - photograph provided by Prairie Pothole

There is a lot of wide open space in north central North Dakota. That is absolutely no secret. Plenty of fresh air and open skies punctuated by the occasional small town. That kind of real estate just seems to be asking for a music festival set out under the sun and stars. After all, if something like Burning Man can draw crowds to the middle of the desert, then why not more hospitable prairieland? All it would take is someone with the dedication to put it together. Recently, we…

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The mojo of Scott H. Biram

by Sabrina Hornung | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 18th, 2018

Scott H. Biram - photograph by Raul Gomez

When asked if he’s played many folk festivals Texas bluesman Scott H Biram flashed a mischievous grin and chuckled as he gave us a quick “Noooo.” As he opened his set on Sunday afternoon he informed the crowd that he was sent to “terrorize folk fest.”  We had the opportunity to chat with Biram backstage at the Bur Oak stage at Winnipeg Folk Fest. 

When asked what his interpretation of folk music was he said, “The traditional way of looking at folk music is looking at…

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​For the love of Winnipeg

by Sabrina Hornung | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | July 18th, 2018

Courtney Barnett - photograph by Raul Gomez

Paul Janeway of Saint Paul and the Broken Bones summed it up best during our interview backstage of the Main Stage at Winnipeg Folk Festival when he said “For me, folk music is really supposed to be the music of the common man. I think hip hop is just as much folk music as some dude with a guitar because it’s talking about real issues.” He went on to say, “Folk music is the music of the people trying to share their experiences.”

Saint Paul and the Broken Bones - photograph by Raul Gomez

Needless to say folk music is dynamic and is ever…

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