POETS, PLAYWRIGHTS & PLAYERS II—CELEBRATING NATIONAL POETRY MONTH on April 28 at the Family Wash, N'Ville
We'll be returning to the Family Wash stage with 6 dynamic poets this month for our second Poets, Playwrights and Players event on Friday, April 28. The performance starts at 8:30 and includes spoken word artists Destiny O. Birdsong, Jas Taylor, Larry Polo, Laurie Hoffma, Jessie Scott and Greg Greene. January's performance was a full house, so call ahead for reservations. The Family Wash is at 626 Main St., East Nashville. Call 615-645-9930. Do not miss!
LISTEN UP! WE'RE RECORDING AGAIN!
It's time to fire up the tape machines, grease up the big amps and roll into the studio. We'll be doing some recording over the next few months, in the early stages of making the next Ted Drozdowski's Scissormen album. We're already planning some surprises—even for ourselves—and have lots of new songs that haven't yet made it to the stage. By the time we're done, expect special guests, new sounds and, of course, the unexpected.
MORE GOOD STUFF—SHOWS, SLIDES, T-SHIRTS, AND GUITARS—HEADING INTO WINTER 2016
It's been an exciting year. If you keep pace with what Ted's up to via Facebook, you've seen Mississippi festivals, new guitars, news about new recordings, and a lot more. And there's still more to come. We're about the embark on a mini-tour to support the free Stink Eye EP (available via NoiseTrade.com) with some early November New England gigs, and waiting in the wings is our recording of "Tin Pan Alley," a Jimmy Wilson tune made more recently famous by Stevie Ray Vaughan. And our version is, guaranteed, unlike any other SRV track out there. It's for a new SRV tribute compilation being released by the Orchard label, and we'll have more news on that soon. Meanwhile, you can keep track of Ted's interviews and profiles of guitarists of all kinds at Premier Guitar, as well as guitar and amp reviews. We'll also be re-pressing the Love & Life album, which will be sold out after this November New England run, in 2017. Also, we're now into the third run of Ted's signature slides, made by Rocky Mountain Slides, that are now available at shows, as are the brand-new Love & Life t-shirts.
It's been a crazy, rocking year so far—with lots of great shows. Love & Life continues to get lots of radio play. Ted's signature slide is now available from Colorado's Rocky Mountain Slides. The band just cut a new track for a Stevie Ray Vaughan tribute album. Ted's got more solo gigs on the books, and the band's heading to MS and New England in coming months. Plus Ted's debut ebook is still available at Amazon and via NoiseTrade. And there's more in the works. You can read about it all … or at least most of it, in the new Scissormen newsletter by following this link: https://t.e2ma.net/message/5hpqi/12uxye
HAPPY 2016!!!! LET'S HANG OUT!!!
And so the new year, full of fresh hope and opportunity, is upon us. Let's hang out! For real or online or by sharing music. Of course, you can still go to NoiseTrade.com and get the Stink Eye EP, with the beautiful Dolly the Dog on the cover, for free. Or, better yet, buy a copy of our critically heralded, much-airplayed album Love & Love for about $10 at CD Baby, Amazon, iTunes and other joints. And come catch a show. As the first few months of the year roll out, we'll be scheduling concerts that'll take us to our friends and supporters in places like the Midwest and Northeast, getting around the South, and throwing in some curveballs, too. Right now we're back home in Tennessee working on new tunes to share with y'all. Meanwhile, feel free to connect with us on line at Twitter or Facebook, or drop a line via the email address on this website. And if you want to get us to come play for you, drop a line via those methods or by calling or emailing our ace booking agent Steve at the Road Warrior Agency. And keep an eye open for Ted's stories and gear reviews at Premier Guitar. AND, if you've got any of your own music to share, we'd love to hear it. Post something on our pages or send us a link or file. Like I said earlier, let's hang out!
FREE MUSIC AND EBOOK FOR THE HOLIDAYS FROM TED DROZDOWSKI'S SCISSORMEN
Okay, if you're reading this page, we love you… or at least we're infatuated with you. And we'd love to show our affection by offering you free music and a free ebook over the holiday season. This is going to require some cutting and pasting, so get out your virtual scissors and get ready. The Stink Eye EP not only features a photo of Ted's gorgeous dog, the official Scissormen mascot, Dolly on the cover, it's got a half-dozen tunes culled from the new album Love & Life and the earlier release Luck in a Hurry by Ted himself. And that's not all. The ultra-rare song "Josh Gibson," about the American baseball hero, is also on there. That song was previously released on a batch of 90 vinyl only EPs that were hand cut on a lathe, so hardly anyone in the universe has heard this song co-written and recorded by the current, killer band line-up: Ted, bassist Shawn Zywick and drummer Pete Pulkrabek. It's very much a group effort. Get you copy now for zero dinero at NoiseTrade at: http://noisetrade.com/teddrozdowskisscissormen/stink-eye
And while you're at it, double back to NoiseTrade for a free copy of Ted's debut ebook, Obsessions of a Music Geek: Volume I — Blues Guitar Giants. If you're a blues fan or guitar freak, you want this, even if you don't know it yet. The book features interviews with and essays about Johnny Winter, Freddie King, Mike Bloomfield, Otis Rush, John Lee Hooker, Billy Gibbons and Dan Auerbach. It's the real deal, whatever the hell that means. And it is also absolutely free at: http://books.noisetrade.com/teddrozdowski/obsessions-of-a-music-geek-volume Dig 'em both, and enjoy the holidays!
BLUES BLAST & Vintage Guitar: More Great ReviewS FOR LOVE & LIFE! PLUS, HUFFINGTON POST PREMIERES "R.L. BURNSIDE (SLEIGHT RETURN)" VIDEO
Yes, Blues Blast and Vintage Guitar magazines are the latest publication to give our new album Love & Life a rave review. You can read it here: http://www.bluesblastmagazine.com/ted-drozdowskis-scissormen-love-life-album-review/ And in other way cool developments, the Huffington Post has just premiered the second video from the Love & Life album, for "R.L. Burnside (Sleight Return)." Check it out Mike Rogana's music blog: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-ragogna/electronica-and-grande-am_b_8285738.html Oh, and while you're at it, there is this aforementioned glowing review from Vintage Guitar: http://planetsixstring.com/ted-drozdowskis-scissormen/
The consensus from critics, writers and radio programmers is that it's a helluva good album. For more proof, check out the following.
You can stream the entire album for free at AllMusic.com by cutting and pasting this link: http://www.allmusic.com/blog/post/album-premiere-ted-drozdowskis-scissormen-love-life And if you like what you hear, get the download at Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Life-Ted-Drozdowskis-Scissormen/dp/B00ZSABEWU Or you you can buy the physical CD at CDBaby.com here: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/teddrozdowskisscissormen And if you want more proof of awesomeness, check out Joe Wolf-Mazeres' eloquent and detailed review of the album at No Depression here: http://nodepression.com/album-review/ted-drozdowski%E2%80%99s-scissormen-love-and-life-mind-bending-time-trippin-blues OR a live show review in No Depression here: http://nodepression.com/live-review/scissormen-brought-raw-and-gritty-blues-new-england WOW!!!!!!!!!! Stay tuned for more, with more tour stops including the Music City Roots radio show and more national coverage. AND you can hear Scissormen play and Ted talk on the famed 2.4-million listener Beale Street Caravan radio show here: http://bealestreetcaravan.com/listen/shows/2015-07-29 And this just in: a long interview with Ted in the highly respected publication for touring, Pollstar: http://www.pollstar.com/news_article.aspx?ID=819701 And wait, THERE'S MORE: another great review — this time from the Rev. Keith A. Gordon's That Devil Music blog: http://www.thatdevilmusic.com/2015/08/cd-review-ted-drozdowskis-scissormens.html And, and don't forget about The Boston Globe: https://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/music/2015/07/30/drozdowski-scissormen-mix-blues-psychedelia-and-more/Fexybc0YzKoqT1rQFC9M8J/story.html Elmore magazine, too: http://www.elmoremagazine.com/2015/08/reviews/albums/ted-drozdowskis-scissormen There's also this feature interview in American Blues Scene: http://www.americanbluesscene.com/2015/08/ted-drozdowski-and-the-scissormen-authentic-innovative-and-a-tad-eccentric/ And if that's not enough, there's a cool interview with Ted in the Nashville Scene: http://www.nashvillescene.com/nashville/ted-drozdowski-and-the-scissormen-take-the-blues-into-uncharted-territory/Content?oid=5461375
NASHVILLE ALBUM AND BOOK RELEASE CELEBRATIONS – THURS, AUG 13, AND SAT, AUG 15
We kicked off a special week of hometown album release celebrations in Nashville with a sold-out show at the world famous Bluebird Cafe on Sunday, August 9. Now the events continue with an in-store at Grimey's, one of America's top 10 record stores, on Thursday, August 13, at 6 p.m. Ted will also read from his new ebook Obsessions of a Music Geek: Vol 1 — Blues Guitar Giants during this free, all-ages appearance. And there's an album release concert and fundraiser for the medical costs of Mighty Sam McClain at the Basement on Saturday, August 15. The Basement show runs from 6 to 8 p.m. and admission is $7 for this 21-plus show.
OUR NEW LOVE & LIFE ALBUM IS ALIVE — STREAM IT, BUY IT, READ ABOUT IT, PLUS LIVE REVIEWS ANd Beale Street Caravan EPISODE AVAILABLE FOR STREAMING
Our new album Love & Life arrived in the world on Friday, July 31, and has been getting an overwhelmingly warm reception from radio, journalists and, most important, fans. We've just completed the first leg of this year's touring behind the release, with shows in NYC, MA and CT and stops coming in MN, IN, KS, NB, CO and elsewhere. You can catch up with Love & Love now!!!! You can stream the entire album for free at AllMusic.com by cutting and pasting this link: http://www.allmusic.com/blog/post/album-premiere-ted-drozdowskis-scissormen-love-life And if you like what you hear, get the download at Amazon here: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Life-Ted-Drozdowskis-Scissormen/dp/B00ZSABEWU Or you you can buy the physical CD at CDBaby.com here: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/teddrozdowskisscissormen And if you want more proof of awesomeness, check out Joe Wolf-Mazeres' eloquent and detailed review of the album at No Depression here: http://nodepression.com/album-review/ted-drozdowski%E2%80%99s-scissormen-love-and-life-mind-bending-time-trippin-blues OR a live show review in No Depression here: http://nodepression.com/live-review/scissormen-brought-raw-and-gritty-blues-new-england WOW!!!!!!!!!! Stay tuned for more, with more tour stops including the Music City Roots radio show and more national coverage. AND you can hear Scissormen play and Ted talk on the famed 2.4-million listener Beale Street Caravan radio show here: http://bealestreetcaravan.com/listen/shows/2015-07-29 And this just in: a long interview with Ted in the highly respected publication for touring, Pollstar: http://www.pollstar.com/news_article.aspx?ID=819701 And wait, THERE'S MORE: another great review — this time from the Rev. Keith A. Gordon's That Devil Music blog: http://www.thatdevilmusic.com/2015/08/cd-review-ted-drozdowskis-scissormens.html And, and don't forget about The Boston Globe: https://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/music/2015/07/30/drozdowski-scissormen-mix-blues-psychedelia-and-more/Fexybc0YzKoqT1rQFC9M8J/story.html Elmore magazine, too: http://www.elmoremagazine.com/2015/08/reviews/albums/ted-drozdowskis-scissormen There's also this feature interview in American Blues Scene: http://www.americanbluesscene.com/2015/08/ted-drozdowski-and-the-scissormen-authentic-innovative-and-a-tad-eccentric/
CHECK OUT THIS ADVANCE REVIEW OF LOVE & LIFE, OUT INTERNATIONALLY ON JULY 31
Check out Jonathan Perry's Life in Analog blog to see his entire piece on Ted and the new album via this URL: http://rpmlifeinanalog.com/2015/07/22/love-life-lit-ted-drozdowskis-scissormen-cut-deep-to-the-blues-and-beyond/
And read this except review of Love & Life.
Ten years of doing anything you love is a victory in and of itself — a triumph of focus, dedication, and longevity– and that milestone is certainly worth celebrating. That celebratory spirit shines — or, perhaps more accurately, blazes — through much of “Love & Life.” At heart, it’s a fun, bracing work that stings with the fervor of open-road adventure, while also being a summation and embrace of the accrued miles, destinations, and experiences of the past. At its soul, a palpable sense of restlessness and yearning threads through the material. The feeling you get, right from the muddy shoe’d strut of “Beggin’ Jesus,” the opening track and first single (see the cool video link below), is one of a quest to find meaning amid tumult, redemption amid temptation, and the state-of-grace rewards suggested by the title. The next two tracks, “Letter From Hell,” a big, boozy, Bo Diddley-beat inspired workout, and “The River,” a slow smolder ofspooky-then-roiling majesty, capture the kind of approach their author has always placed at a premium: namely, standing at the crossroads of the blues and rootstraditions of the past, and then driving the music forward to new, unchartered territories as brazen and wide open as tomorrow.
Amid all the revelations, reveries, and reflections to be found (“Black Lung Fever” is, for instance, an account of the illness that claimed both of Ted’s Pennsylvania coal-mining grandfathers before he was born), there are tributes too. A couple of them were born out of affectionate gestures of respect (“Watermelon Kid” is about blues renaissance man Watermelon Slim; “R.L. Burnside [Sleight Return]” is an homage to Drozdowski’s friend and mentor, the late Mississippi hill country blues patriarch R.L. Burnside). Another track, the Stax-spiked ballad, “Let’s Go To Memphis,” also began as a tribute, albeit a very different kind than Drozdowski had in mind. Now it’s an elegy; a final farewell from one ofAmerican music’s great, if under-heard soul and gospel singers, Mighty Sam McClain, “a dear friend” for more than 20 years, as Drozdowski describes him.
WE LOVE YOU, MIGHTY SAM McCLAIN, 1943 — 2015
Last night, I lost my dear friend Mighty Sam McClain. Sam was a lion. An inspiration. A good and honest man. And one of the greatest soul singers who ever lived. Others may have sold more records and been more widely accepted by the music business insiders who call too many of the shots, but Sam was a unique and powerful artist with a big heart, big dreams and a special bond with his fans, who often sent him letters and emails telling Sam how much his music meant to them and how it had saved their marriage, their faith and, in some cases, their lives. I loved my conversations with Sam and am going to miss them greatly. We'd typically start by complaining about some music biz BS or another we were dealing with at the time, and end up talking about how lucky we were to have our art, to be creative and to be loved and cherished by the ones we love and cherish, with all sorts of left turns in between. The last time I saw Sam, I knew we were losing him. He was lying in a hospital bed and the vitality was slipping from his body and mind, and the cancer dug deeper. But the beauty of his soul was intact. He was one of the very best friends I've eve had. I am going to miss him every day for the rest of my life. But I feel lucky to have known Sam, and I am so happy to have recorded a song with him. "Let's Go To Memphis" on Love & Life meant the world to me when we recorded it. To have a song with his voice – truly, to borrow a phrase from Sam Phillips, "a voice from the place where the soul of man never dies" — means even more now. I love you Sam. I miss you, and I am going to carry your spirit, your work and the fire of your inspiration with me for the rest of my life.
TRIBUTE TO AMERICAN MUSIC GENIUS ORNETTE COLEMAN: 1930 - 2015
ORNETTE COLEMAN, the American music innovator, died yesterday of a heart attack in Manhattan at age 85. Coleman was a wholly distinctive jazz voice whose saxophone playing and compositional abilities were unique, visionary and full of the detail and range that reflected both inner processes and the character of the times in which he lived. With early albums like Something Else!!! and The Shape of Jazz to Come, Coleman transitioned the music from bebop to a place with few limitations, where free playing and harmonically rich composition co-existed on a high plane. Coleman and my late friend and mentor Robert Palmer were close, and Robert's profile of Coleman in his posthumous collection Blues & Chaos edited by Anthony DeCurtis is a "must" for lovers of great music. (The book itself is a must for any serious music head.) I got to see Coleman a few times and found his live performances elevating and provocative, and left them feeling full of fresh ideas. With Coleman's departure, we lose yet another of our American geniuses of the arts, the men and women who are foundational or sustaining figures in disciplines that help define the heart and soul of who we are as a nation and a united people with many roots. Inevitably a bit of our national character and heritage is lost as each of them passes. Their work must be held high, treasured and sustained by those of us who are left – by those of us who believe in substance over the trivial, who believe in the fire of the soul and the power and truth within the creative heart and mind. These are things that make us great, and they are easily lost if they are uncared for. Remember to love music and the arts, love your friends and families, love your neighbors and love yourselves… and aim high, like Ornette Coleman did.
INDIEGOGO CONTRIBUTORS: CHECK YOUR MAIL AND EMAIL FOR YOUR WONDERFUL PERKS
Hey gang, all of the perks from our Indiegogo campaign, which drew 166 contributors from nine countries, are already in the mail or email, or just about to launch. The last item to go out will be the album downloads. Thanks to all of you, VERY, VERY MUCH! The new Love & Love album would not be coming out on July 31 without your help! Stayed tuned for more info about tour dates and more here, and on Facebook at Ted's personal page and the Scissormen page. Y'all rock, and we love YOU!
SHARING MY THOUGHTS ABOUT THE GREAT B.B. KING
B.B. KING was a beacon for the best things about blues: it's beauty, depth of feeling, storytelling, originality, character and musical excellence and evolution. He was also a kind, generous and gracious man who cared about the people he entertained and the people he employed. And he was a living link to an era when performers were truly shining ambassadors of the arts – larger than life in a way that reflected a knowledge that with their status came certain responsibilities to themselves, their fans, their creativity and the qualities that made them special. I was privileged and lucky enough to meet and speak to B.B. quite a few times, and to see him perform even more. There were many highlights, including an incendiary performance closing the Newport Jazz Festival and his guitar intensive summer shed tours, including a year that he concluded his set at Mansfield, MA with a six-string shoot-out between himself, Lonnie Brooks, Buddy Guy and Eric Johnson in which he was clearly the last man standing. King was perhaps the most influential guitarist since the use of amplification, and carried the torch for many players who influenced him, with T-Bone Walker, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Robert Nighthawk and Django Reinhardt — whose playing he studied reverently for decades — at the fore. Guitarists looking to perfect vibrato need only to look at and listen to King. And as a vocalist with supreme soul and authority, he had few peers. Until he was diminished by age, King also exemplified the idea that growth is a requirement for committed artists, consciously working to expand his playing abilities and his creative realm. And he embodied the Great Migration of African-Americans from the rural South to urban centers in the North — even if the North for King was initially Memphis — and he achieved all of the promise that Migration held for so many. When performers like King — and I also add the names Johnny Cash, Frank Sinatra, Duke Ellington. Bill Monroe, Sun Ra, Les Paul, Miles Davis… — pass, we lose a part of American culture – in attitude, example, very literally in song catalog — that will never be replaced. King was more than merely the "King of the Blues," an easy tag for him because of his stature and world-wide recognition. He was one of the people who truly make Great American Music "great." And while it may seem cliche, there is only one song of B.B.'s — despite his vast and often moving catalog from "Three O'Clock Blues" to "When Love Comes To Town" – that I feel can carry this moment. And if you're a fan of King's, you know what it is.
OUR NEW ALBUM LOVE & LIFE COMES OUT ON JULY 31
The cat's out of the bag on our upcoming album. Love & Life comes out on July 31 and will become available shortly before that date. If you'd like to order an autographed advance copy, for June delivery, you can still visit our successful Indiegogo campaign and make a contribution. We'll be playing Johnny D's in Boston on the release date, in a special dinner show, but the Love & Life Tour officially starts on June 2, when we play the first of two nights at Memphis' world famous Rum Boogie Cafe. That show will be taped for an international radio broadcast. Watch our Facebook page for early premiers of songs from the album, and the release of the video for the first single, coming soon. Got questions? Got somewhere you want us to play? Drop a line, Clementine!
OUR LOVE & LIFE TOUR STARTS THIS JUNE – WHERE DO YOU WANT TO SEE US PLAY FOR YOU?
Hey friends, we're going to start supporting our upcoming Love & Life album with dates starting in June. We're coming to Massachusetts, New York, Atlanta, Denver, Lincoln, NB, Denver and Fort Collins, CO, and more. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to tell us where you'd like to see Ted Drozdowski's Scissormen come play for you!
LOVE & LIFE ALBUM READY TO ROCK THIS SUMMER
On April 1 we'll be announcing the street date for Love & Life, the brand new and long awaited album from Ted Drozdowski's Scissormen. The disc features 11 songs played by the band's new trio line-up, recorded on top of a mountain just outside of Nashville, Tennessee. We've got a very special guest vocalist, a video in the works for the first single, and will be posting more "Love & Life Tour" dates very shortly. And once again, thanks to all our fans/friends who contributed $14,000 to make Love & Life possible. Stay tuned for more!
THANK YOU FOR CONTRIBUTING $14,000 TO MY FUNDRAISER TO MAKE A NEW ALBUM – LOVE & LIFE
THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH! I've just completed an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds to make and release the next Ted Drozdowski's Scissormen album, Love & Life. We hit our goal of $13,335 on Sunday, February 15, and exceeded it the next day. You can still visit http://indie.me/at/scissormen to pre-order an album or make any other contribution you'd like. All funds beyond the costs of making and releasing the album will go toward creating T-shirts and other costs. And please stay tuned here for more updates on the creation and release of the Love & Life album!!!!!
WE NEED YOUR HELP TO COMPLETE AND RELEASE OUR NEXT ALBUM — LOVE & LIFE – FOR THIS SUMMER
Please visit our campaign and see the fun video at http://igg/me/at/scissormen
We've launched out first Indiegogo campaign and have reached 25-precent of our goal but still need a lot of help from our friends like you. And we've got some very cool "perks" to offer in return, from advance copies to house concerts and Skype guitar lessons. Please check it out and consider becoming part of our new album! We'd be honored to have you aboard with us!
PLEASE HELP ME CREATE THE NEXT TED DROZDOWSKI'S SCISSORMEN ALBUM – LOVE & LIFE— VIA INDIEGOGO
Please visit the fundraising campaign and see the video at http://igg/me/at/scissormen
And here's the scoop:
Over the decades I’ve earned an international reputation as an inventive, hard-working musician and entertainer, and respected and award-winning journalist, historian, educator and advocate. Every project I’ve undertaken has had the mission of bringing great American roots music to more people while making them happy. The next step in this mission is a new album called Love & Life, which will bridge the past and present in a fresh and authentic way with the best music I’ve ever made. It’s joyful music that touches the mind and inspires the soul.
To do this, I need funding to create, mix, master and manufacture Love & Life, and to take it to the world with a marketing campaign that speaks to a broader audience. With your support, I can build a new, vital, living perspective on American roots music.
I’m offering large and small "perks" for your sharing at different levels, from a very important executive producer credit on the project to an autographed guitar to my first e-book to rare demos. And at every level of giving, there will be music for you. I’m also happy to tailor a package of rewards specifically for you.
If you can't make a contribution, even to preorder the CD, please spread the word about this campaign. Thanks!
BRING TED DROZDOWSKI’S SCISSORMEN TO YOUR EVENT/TOWN
Hey folks, if y’all want Scissormen at your club, festival, coffeehouse, house concert or other event this summer or fall, now’s the time to get in touch. Drop a line to email@example.com for booking information. Meanwhile, we’re building our schedule and will be posting a fresh series of festival and club dates shortly. Stayed tuned!
TED CHOSEN FOR NASHVILLE PERISCOPE ARTIST ENTREPRENEUR PROGRAM
Ted is honored to be among the 25 artists from multiple disciplines to be chosen for the Periscope artist entrepreneur training program in Nashville — a cooperative effort between Music City’s Arts Business Council, the Entrepreneur Center, the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and Delta Airlines. The six-week program starts at the end of March.