Greg Kavna

Comparisons… judgements… rulings….

Some people love the Eagles, some people fucking hate the Eagles… I think this cover of a Tom Waits song by the Eagles when compared with the original might establish the origins of that hatred. I’d love some comments on this for the craic like.

And while we’re in a comparing kind of mood have a listen to the two next tracks on this playlist, they’re in chronological order. What do you make of that?

Sunday Groove

Heard this track on the radio this morning.. still some good stations here in NYC

Jaysis it’s groovy…

Instruction for use:

1. Apply tune to air. (Use a large stereo if possible)

2. Stand up.

3. Close eyes.

4. Move in the way and only in the way that the music makes you feel.

5. Repeat the previous step.

Serving suggestion:-  ask someone you like sleeping with to join you. :)

 

 

Lloyd Cole

Had the incomparable pleasure of having a drink with Lloyd Cole last week after he sold out the city winery. We all got pissed up in the west village. My good mate Dave Derby was describing playing bass with King Cole in Brazil – playing Forest Fire for the first time as a forced fifth encore. The guitar solo blew his mind as it unfurled in front of him… it still blows me away and it will do the same to you.

Dave’s band Gramercy Arms also has excellent gems…

Duets

Been fascinated by the duet. I was lucky enough to bump into to Stacey Roca in the neighborhood and we started singing a few songs together. She’s avin a baby so it’s on hold for the moment but we got one track in the bag. Send all your best vibes to Stacey and her xmas baby coming soon…

…away in a manger….

 

 

 

Featured Artist On ReverbNation

I’m a featured artist on reverbnation this week which should ensure an xmas number 1 at least. Have a look around the site, lots of great artists.

 

 

 

Come See Me In My Tree

Two sweeeet nights playing jazz inflected jazz with the incomparable Matt Basile on the upright bass in the Tree Bistro. If the music was even close to being as good as the food then we were in with the greats. Matt and I managed to bring our musical styling to places we’d never been before. We’re not sure if the music made it back safely but we certainly enjoyed bringing it to strange parties dressed in unusual clothing, it’s New York so shit happens, even to songs, get over it.

Go and visit out Matt’s website imBasile and check out all the great music he’s involved in. Matt has a deep sonorous mellifluous speaking voice that is impeccably suited to a man who makes his living from the lower register and he will tend to stretch out his vowels like warm buttery toffee over a kitten’s back. For instance he’ll pronounce my name Greg Kavenawwww which is why I will forgive his mispelling of my name and handily allows me to proffer one of the reasons for the current spelling of my name, Kavna, which if spoken in the clipped nasal accent of a Dubliner sounds like that same toffee, placed in the fridge for a few hours and then snapped in two by a pair of hower’ya’s (Dublin vernacular for young girls of dubious intention and even more dubious history (two of the New York variety actually invaded the bistro last night dressed as extras from a Tim Burton movie and forcibly hit on our own celebrity sous-chef, ( yes it’s true he is a reality TV star ) (can you use brackets like this?) (No!)  leaving him stunned, next they were spotted prancing into Coyote Ugly ) on an October night (still with me?) at a bus stop (look, just read it again ok).  Kav-na, say the Kav faster than the Na and you’ve got it, so the spelling should leave no doubt as to how it’s pronounced – America.

So if you’re in the East Village on Wednesday nights come out and check in with us, it’s always  a good time there. Your host Colm (the Irish guy who owns a French bistro, as he was referred to last night by one of his patrons, ha!) while he does treat his musicians like the dogs we are, is without doubt one of the great bon vivants of the village. I think that may be the reason the place is always full of the most beautiful women, although I think our Southern Belle, Ms. Chopin, who’s really in charge, may be responsible.

I’ll be playing Thursday night next week also, covering for the musical tornado that is Andy Fitzpatrick. He has a great new album out.  Seriously lads, I don’t think any Irish artist is producing anything like the work Andy’s doing at the moment, it has its mind in Tin Pan Alley and its heart in Memphis and aside from all that he has impeccable taste in website design (I swear it was a coincidence, no really). He’s back in the homeland eating buttery toast and the occasional croissant for a few weeks.

But asides aside (I’ll stop now) if you like great music, great food, great people, great times, great atmosphere and great surroundings come along and join the parade, and if you don’t there’s always this.

 

New Review… Bitter Sweet Charm

Got a review from Bitter Sweet Charm, (obviously it’s good or I wouldn’t be posting it.)

I agree with everything she says… ahem..

Read it here:

http://bittersweetcharm.blogspot.com/2013/08/simple-sweet-when-you-leave-album-review.html

 

 

Ceol, Ceol, Gigs, Gigs

Another lovely night in Ceol in Brooklyn, great music, Niall Connolly (International Folk Hero) the ringmaster in the musical circus, great chats on the patio. Met a man who is descended from Irish Travelers that moved here in the 1600’s. Proud of his tradition and heritage. Fascinating history. Something that you don’t come across to often in the USA is a conversation about something that happened more than 3 months ago. Everyone’s running into the future here.

I was joined by the charismatic Stacey Roca and she enjoyed herself so much she’s agreed to join me at the Path Cafe on Saturday. Come along. 11pm in the West Village

More Details Here…

Tambourine.. Tambourine.. Living reflection of a tambourine.

While walking past my esteemed colleague in sound’s studio on 23rd st. and Madison, I called him up to bum a smoke because I don’t smoke. He enables this particular delusion as he doesn’t smoke either, much. Mid ciggy he mentions he’d acquired a vintage 12 string on E-Bay from somewhere in Nashville and would like I like to have a play of it. Being a 12 string I start riffing on aforementioned alluded to composition by 70’s rock legends and he says ‘lets put that down’ couple of hours later we had something, don’t really know what it is, but it’s something, you might like it too..

 

This Nile Rodgers Obsession has to stop (good bit’s at the end)

Always been a huge Rodgers fan, since I was a kid. I’d been harbouring a feeling for the past few years that music had forgotten how great he is but he’s back on top again with Daft Punk, recreating the Chic sound. For me the DNA for ‘Get Lucky’ is in this track.

compare it with

 

It’s incredible that he’s doing it again – taking over the world with his sound.

But my favorite Rodgers track on the album is ‘Lose Yourself To Dance’

Which I think is a more even balance between the French Dance maestros and the Disco King but Rodgers does lay in one of his trademark, proven disco warhead fissile tips for chart destruction and domination. Allow me to explain what I’m hearing and why it struck me. A few years back Joe Castellon was helping me finish of my first album and in the process showing me more about recording music that I had learnt in all the time up to then. When we finished up the mixes he sat me down and said, “Listen Greg, I think this is a good album that you’ve made here but before you take my opinion there’s something I have to tell you”. He then told me that he used to help with the string arrangments on Chic songs back in the day and that when Nile Rodgers came in with Freak Out he looked at Nile and said nobody is ever going to like that hook, it’s too late in the bar, on the ‘4 and’ and 1, it’ll never be a hit. (For non-music geeks, although if you’ve gotten this far there’s probably not many of you left, a bar of music in 4/4 time has 4 beats to each bar, 1,2,3,4 and all the music in the piece uses this as the foundation, it’s the heartbeat of the tune. In Le Freak the phrase ‘Freak Out’ happens in a strange place for pop music, bear with me here, if you highlight the beats between the main beats by counting it like this.. 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and 1 and 2 and 3 and 4.. etc you may notice that the word Freak lands on the ‘and’ after 4 and the word ‘Out’ lands on the 1. And then in the rest of the tune the strings do it.). So Joe was impressing upon me that he had managed to get it wrong on one of the biggest selling singles of all time and that I should be careful of his opinion of my work and it’s potential. Looks like he was right about being wrong. But as I was listening to ‘Lose Yourself to Dance’ I could hear the guitar singing ‘Freak Out’ in the same place, have a listen. It’s a more relaxed vibe but it’s there, that magical rhythmical hook is doing it’s same voodoo in this tune too.

I got to meet the great man once, on the plane from Dublin to New York. I had caught his storming show at the Electric Picnic which was a masterclass in everything you need to know about a live show. I was sitting waiting to board and I saw him heading towards the business class door, the hit-maker guitar strapped to his back. I lost it completely, managed to borrow a pen and a piece of paper off the woman sitting next to me, she thought I was having a breakdown, and rushed up to him to get his autograph. Very calmly he informed me that he had to get on the plane right now and that maybe I could say hello to him on board. Obviously from growing up in NY in the 70’s and 80’s he was well rehearsed in talking down approaching lunatics before they got out of hand. Crestfallen and in my place again I slunk back to my plastic seat, returned the pen and was thankful that I wasn’t obsessed enough to think about trying to get into business class to say hello to a major celebrity, because that’s what they let you do on planes right, just wander up and chat to the VIP’s, I mean that’s why they pay a couple of grand for the seat, so we can have more space when we stroll up to tell them that we’re one of the millions of people who like the music.

I took my seat on the plane, the very last one, right down the back, feeling a bit stupid but in a way pleased that I had gotten that excited and laughing at myself for going to pieces when suddenly I spied a familiar figure sauntering down the aisle as only a man with that much groove in him could do.

“No way”, I thought but definitely he was looking at me, “Fuck! He is coming to see me”.

“The last goddamn seat on the plane”, he laughed at me as he rolled up, “The last goddamn seat!”.

I then had one of the nicest conversations, he asked about me, what I thought of his gig, told me how much of a good time he had in Ireland (without having to be prompted by a Late Late Show host) all while signing an autograph and telling the stressed stewardess who was pleading with him to go back to his seat to chill. The man was beyond cool, he was a beautiful person. Me, not being cool, decided to tell him about the funk covers band I played with in in Dublin, Gregory Spade And The Love Tailors .

“Hey you know what”, says I, “I used to make my money playing your songs on a Friday night”. Without dropping a beat he looks straight at me, smiling generously.

“So did I man”, says he, “So did I”.