All posts tagged Fred Eaglesmith

Music to Sooth the Savage Soul

As I lick my wounds from the beating I took at the Silver Lake BBQ Competition, I used a little a music to bring back a healthier perspective on life.  No matter how dry a brisket might turn out, there is still good music to be discovered and enjoyed. Life remains good.

Here is a new CD I reviewed from the WYCE collection.

The John Henrys
Sweet as the Grain

This summer I was turned on to Fred Eaglesmith with his sensational Tinderbox CD.  Then I discovered the Duhks.  Now I have added The John Henrys’ new CD, Sweet as the Grain,  to my playlist.  The common denominator; Canadian roots music.

Sweet as a Grain, has been highly praised by a wide variety of mainstream and new media music critics. It is a blend of country, rockabilly and rock and roll.  Although their sound is unique, I was reminded of The Flying Burrito Brothers and New Riders of the Purple Sage, especially in track #1- Sweet as the Grain.  In tracks #3 and #6, there is certainly a sound much like Tom Petty’s new band; Mudcrutch.  Another musical memory was when I listened to tracks #5 and #10- and The Rolling Stones “country” sounds were called to mind.  A little rockabilly (with a touch of surf music) rounds out the CD– especially on tracks #8 and #9…(anyone remember the The Lost Planet Airmen?)

So there you go- The John Henrys; A little Burrito, some Petty, a couple of stones,  a touch of a surfing Commander Cody and a fresh Canadian breeze.

If Time and Money Were Not an Issue…

What would you do?

I would still be barbecuing, that is for sure, but probably with a Weber Ranch Kettle. Another thing- combing music with travel and adventure.  How is this for the ultimate music/travel/adventure trip:

Roots on the Rail Polar Bear Train

Riding a train with Fred Eaglesmith, to Churchill, Manitoba, “the Polar Bear Capitol of the World.” Can you imagine anything better?  C’mon…

Speaking of music, my brother-in-law turned me on to a new Canadian band a few weeks ago –The Duhks.

(Not really new, but new to me) The Duhks are more proof (along with Fred Eaglesmith) that Canada is  exporting more necessities than just beer and bacon.  I love my Canadian brothers!

Because time and money are an issue, a great consolation prize is an upcoming must-see concert featuring-The Young Dubliners .  They will be rocking The Intersection in Grand Rapids, this September.  One of my favorite bands and a source of many iPod downloads.

Next post will a Labor Day BBQ update- maybe a little pulled pork for carnitas.

Fred Eaglesmith and Amen to BBQ Brother!

As last reported, I was on a family vacation at Drummond Island (eastern upper peninsula in Michigan). Radio reception is not always that great, but one station that came in was Canada’s version of NPR.

Coming back from a whitefish dinner at the Northwood Inn, I was half listening/half watching out for deer crossing the road, when the host of a radio show began interviewing Canadian musician, Fred Eaglesmith. Never heard of him, wasn’t that interested. Then, all of a sudden, they played a track from his new CD- Tinderbox, and I was sold…hook, line and sinker. The song was called; Get on Your Knees. It was over before I had a chance to really process how good the tune was and soon I was back at the cabin, but I made a mental note to check this guy out (hoping I could remember his name in a few days).

Three days later I am back in Grand Rapids, and going to the WYCE offices to pick up a few more CD’s to review…and there it was; Fred Eaglesmith’s Tinderbox.

The fickle finger of fate smiled down on me again. If you are fans of Tom Waits, Bruce Springsteen and great songwriting..this is one CD should check out. Tinderbox has a southern Baptist/Pentacostal, fire-and-brimstone, get-on-your-knees-and-pray, can-I-get-an-AMEN-from the choir, feel to it….In other words, perfect for a Sunday barbecue.

In fact, Fred is inspiring me to try a new rib technique this Saturday…hopefully I am filled with the spirit of the holy smoke as I try to coax a new flavor from a few racks of ribs (baby backs).

I will report back on the results, but to make a long story shorter, this new technique was something I “accidentally” observed last year at a BBQ Competition. A friend (and BBQ Champion….name to be withheld to protect myself) was finishing his ribs before turn in….From what I could tell, the ribs were done (visually), but he still had about 90 minutes before they were due. Maybe they needed a little more tendering up….Anyway, he had the racks of ribs layed out and was covering them in brown sugar (heavy cover) and then stacking them up and wrapping in tin foil. He then placed them back in his smoking chamber and walked away.

That is all I know….how long did he leave them? I don’t know. Was it just brown sugar? I don’t know. How cooked were they at that point? I don’t know. What was his dry rub? I don’t know. How hot was his grill? I don’t know. How well did he do? I do know he was in the top three…

There you go….if you believe in fate, karma or luck, it does not matter. Just like I was meant to be turned on to Fred Eaglesmith, I was meant to stumble on this barbecue secret….(I just need to figure out a few details)

So, on Saturday, I am going to go with the brown sugar finish, a spicy dry rub and Big Ricks on the side…I will let you know.

(both photo’s are from Fred’s website)