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Justin Jones

4/10/18 - Special Guest: Justin Trawick

Thanks to Justin Trawick for hanging out with us in the studio this week!

^^Episode Audio/Post Is Live - Click Above (might need to buffer/load, refresh page if you have any issues)^^

Podcast:  iTunesGoogle PlayStitcher, TuneInPocket CastsPodBeanPlayerFM, or THIS URL in your app of choice

 

FROM THIS SHOW

MUSIC

  1. ***G.U.N (Give up on the now), by Radar (Rock, Dance-Rock)

  2. The Bright Side, by Justin Trawick and the Common Good (Bluegrass, Rock)

  3. ***Barista Boyfriend, by Louisa Hall (Folk, Indie Pop)

  4. ***City, Sing to Me, by Blue Plains (Indie, Alternative)

  5. My Father's Gun, by Justin Jones (Rock, Folk)

***The first time we've played this artist for you on the show, & a new artist profile added to our DC Artist Database!  There's new artists every week!

->Follow The Show's Spotify Playlist<-


ANNOUNCEMENTS

HELP US REACH THE GO-GO BANDS!
We love Go-go and now have a page in our DC Artist Database dedicated exclusively to the Go-go.  We have Rare Essence and The Chuck Brown Band on there, and we’ve heard from the JOGO Project. We’re trying to connect with EU, Trouble Funk, Junk Yard Band and the other ones we're missing to get them added.  We’ve emailed and messaged them but they haven’t responded. If you’re connected to any actual members of those bands, would you email introduce us to them or forward this!? It’s a Go-go town, we’d love to add them to our site!  We just need them to click on the "musicians click here" button on our home page www.dcmusicrocks.com and fill out the form on our site one time and we’ll be all set going forward! Thanks for your help connecting us with our love!
http://www.dcmusicrocks.com/gogo


NEW MUSIC RELEASES

Round About - Coming Into Focus (11 Song Rock Album, RIYL Barenaked Ladies)


NEW VIDEOS

Aaron Abernathy - Generation (R&B, RIYL Prince)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SxpttD-6oGw

Lesson Zero - Not That Bad (Rock, RIYL The Eagles)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JuQMh4KKPU


THIS WEEK'S LOCAL DC SHOWS TO SEE

Here’s just a few highlights for the coming week, be sure to check out the calendar for the full list of all the upcoming shows!
http://www.dcmusicrocks.com/local-music-calendar

Sat Apr 14
--Emancipation Day Concert @ Freedom Plaza by Metro Center featuring Rare Essence and more! (Go-Go, RIYL Chuck Brown)
--Melodime @ Milkboy Arthouse in College Park, MD (Rock, RIYL Zac Brown Band)

Sun Apr 15
--Dior Ashley Brown and Band @ Anacostia Arts Center as part of Flower Power Event (Hip Hop, RIYL Queen Latifah)

Tues Apr 17
--Olivia Mancini & The Mates @ Jammin Java (Pop, RIYL Jenny Lewis)

Wed Apr 18
--Aztec Sun @ Wolf Trap (Funk, RIYL Earth Wind & Fire)
--Eli Lev & Emma G @ Milkboy Arthouse (Indie/Pop, RIYL Mumford & Sons, Adele)


Patreon

Do you like what we're doing?  Would you support us?  We'd love to grow and do more!  We're giving away shirts, access to our private facebook group, and more!  We also intend to set aside 10% to contribute directly in the DC Local Music Scene through charities, sponsorships, events, etc.  We want to continue to pay it forward!

HUGE shoutout to our current Patrons! 
**Daniel Warren Hill**    **David Mohl**    **Eli Lev**
**Sarah Byrne**   **Music 4 The Revolution (Abu Jibran)**


We're Looking For Sponsors

We're looking for local businesses to sponsor us!  Know One?  Would you introduce us to them?



Justin Trawick

Video - Bio - Links - Transcript

Justin's Bio:

Justin-Trawick-Bio.jpg

Justin Trawick and The Common Good’s debut record, “The Riverwash EP”, exemplifies the raw emotional live sound Trawick and the band have cultivated over the years playing in clubs and festivals up and down the East Coast. With instrumentation consisting of acoustic guitar, upright bass, fiddle, mandolin, and pedal steel, the band’s live performance plays fast and loose with the “Americana” genre, performing heartfelt ballads followed by raucous bluegrass melodies and even moments of hip hop verses. Written by DC based songwriter Justin Trawick, “The Riverwash EP” introduces the listener to Trawick’s unique brand storytelling with five original songs about love, loss, longing, resilience, and time pulling heartstrings of listeners young and old. Adam Levy (Norah Jones, Tracy Chapman) guest performs on guitar during “All the Places That I’ve Been”, a song inspired by Trawick’s ninety-seven year old grandmother and her stories of the World War II generation. Finally, the album closes with the band’s unique take on “Wonderwall” by Oasis, a track sure to trick the audience into thinking they’re listening to another Trawick original. 

Justin Trawick has been performing in the Washington DC area and along the East Coast since 2006, citing musical influences like Bob Schneider, The Tallest Man on Earth, G. Love, Old Crow Medicine Show, and David Gray. In June of 2015, Trawick released his first single, “Goodbye”, under the band name "Justin Trawick and the Common Good”; written about the search for direction and belonging in a world that constantly feels one step ahead of you. Trawick has performed for TedxEast in NYC at the City Winery, TedxPennsylvaniaAvenue in DC at the Newseum, and has opened for over 30 national acts including Suzanne Vega, Wyclef Jean, Brett Dennen, Blues Traveler, Enter The Haggis, Bob Schneider, and Edwin McCain, and shared bills with Dr. Dogg and The Avett Brothers. In February of 2014, Trawick won “Song of the Year” at the Washington Area Music Awards for his song “All the Places That I’ve Been," which can be downloaded on iTunes as a single along with his five other solo records and EPs. Founder of the nationally touring show “The 9 Songwriter Series” and co-founder of “The Circus Life Podcast" with guests such as Kevin Eubanks, Chris Thomas King, Ernie Halter, Yarn, and Snuffy Walden, Trawick has built a brand that extends far beyond his home base in DC. For more information, please visit http://justintrawick.com.

Full Band - Photo Credit - Martin Radigan 1.JPG

INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT

Brian:     I'm DC music rocks we are shining a spotlight on the great songs, and the incredible people behind the DC regions local music scene. Justin Trawick has been a staple in the scene for as long as I have been in DC and probably more. I will never forget the moment where, my bad was starting out and yours was one of the ones that get tossed around with DC music quite a lot. Your one of those names that I have known for a while. So, working with you, and gotten advice and guidance from you and your thoughts on different things. The local music world connects with Justin. So, I have been a fan for a while, and its truly an honor and I am excited. Thanks for being with us here today man.

Justin Trawick:     Was it you and me that had a 45 minute conversation in my parent's parking lot on the phone, years ago before you started doing this show.

Brian:     I am laughing so hard because I definitely, if it was in your parent's parking lot I wouldn't have known because it was on the phone. It could have been, we were talking about the business. This was even before this, it think that was a Fellowcraft conversation.

Justin Trawick:     But I told you that you had a good broadcast voice. Do you remember that.

Brian:     I do, now that you bring that up.

Justin Trawick:     And here you are, successful, you own multiple beach homes.

Brian:     Oh stop it, this is not about me and my beach homes. Thanks though.   Alright so lets talk about you. Now first and foremost the name Justin Trawick and the common good. And the common good what is that.

Justin Trawick:     I am from Virginia, I grew up in Louisburg and went to college in Fayetteville, Virginia at Longwood University and I live in Arlington now. I am a Virginian probably more technically a northern Virginian but I am a Virginian. So when i was looking for a band name, I really wanted to somehow involve Virginia in the band name. The common wealth was already taken, Justin Trawick and the Common wealth. So looked up Common Wealth in Wikipedia and on Wikipedia the definition of common Wealth, I would have to look at it again but the definition of common wealth in Wikipedia has doing something for the common good. So Justin Trawick and the common Good is a subtle reference to Virginia.

Brian:     Oh my god, a little tribute to Virginia. I love it. You said you were in Louisburg, when did you, you’re in Arlington now?

Justin Trawick:     I live in Arlington, just down the street from here. We can get drunk and stumble home to my place and watch Netflix.

Brian:     It sounds like such a fun evening I got to be honest. It really does. How long has it been since you came to Arlington.

Justin Trawick:     I been in Arlington since 2006, I was commuting back and forth from my parents house to regular day jobs for two years after graduating college in 04. Then I moved into an apartment building down the street, of which is in about 45 days is going to ceased to exist. I got a letter from my landlord that says that your building is going to be demolished. It is no longer going to be there. So i have to figure out my life now.

Brian:     Okay. You got some figuring to do. My god. In regards to figuring your life out, I wanted to ask you when did you decide to make the decision to do music full time. This is a full-time thing for you.

Justin Trawick:     Yes, my last job ended in 2008.

Brian:     What was it that pushed you to the edge that made you say okay I am just going to commit to this.

Justin Trawick:     I got laid off.

Brian:     Okay. I was like I could find another job or this music thing could work if I give it ago.

Justin Trawick:     My parents defiantly wanted your first option, they wanted me to get a job. Come on, my parents were the people who, my dad had two jobs for his entire adulthood, my mother had one. That's our greatest generation, that a baby boomer generation thing. I always wanted to do music full time, I think I am actually happy that I was laid off. If I had not been laid off, I don't think that I would have had the guts to quit a job that was giving me money to show up somewhere. It's everyone's dream, it's really hard to just say I don't want money just handed to me anymore, I am going to go do my own thing. So when that choice is made for me, I kind of in about a week or two of some thinking had realized without really knowing it. I amassed enough of business of bars that I was playing, and a little bit of notoriety already that I actually could afford to pay my rent, my health insurance, my car insurance, even going on terrible dates and stuff like that on music and DC is a really great place to do that, there is a lot of money to be made as an artist as opposed to anywhere else in the country.

     The government is not going out of business, there is a lot of organizations that are spending money on events. I am a working musician here and I go to places like New York and I try to get seen.

Brian:     You are involved in a lot of things, not just Justin Trawick and the Common Good. You play show, and I heard people talk about the nine. Talk about the other stuff that you are doing.

Justin Trawick:     The nine was right before my job ended, I was attempting to come up with a way for me and my friends to get in better venues and to get in front of more people. Some sort of collective, at the time there were two different national tours happening. There was one called the Hotel Café tour, which is Hotel café is a really famous [inaudible 00:05:49] venue in Hollywood, California. Of people that become famous from playing there. The same way people are becoming famous for playing at Rockwood, or the living room in New York. There is also something called ten out of Tenn. Which is ten people out of Tennessee, national specifically. These two tours are doing things that the Hotel Café tour were touring as all these people hanging out at Hotel Café, all friend were like why don't we just tour together. Ten out of Tenn was all these friends, big artists from Nashville touring as a big collective group. One of the best shows I seen happening was at Iota, which again if your listening we are in Arlington, Virginia. Iota is now a club that is defunked just down the street from us, it is where I got started. Very sad that is gone, one of the best shows I saw was a Ten out of Tenn. So with the Nine, I pitched the town of buyer Steve Lambert the DC Nine which is on the corner of u street and ninth street.

 

 You know the DC9. Hey I'm looking to do a collective kind of shows, a unique kind of show structure. What if we call it the Nine at DC9. Sometimes I wish the place was called DC six, Dc Seven cause nine is a lot. But now it's like I've committed to the branding at this point, this year is my tenth year. This year we are actually planning a very big tenth anniversary show, I am talking to some of the bigger venues but I am really excited about it but the Nine has been great. Rachel Planton, which everyone knows is on the radio now has done it, Jimmy Haha from Jimmy's Chicken track has done it. I mean Adam Levy who is the guitar player for Nora Jones. The guy who plays the sweet guitar licks. Give me one reason by Tracy Chapman which you always here when you are shopping for pasta or any kind of grocery store. We have had some big people on it, and I am attempting to try and expand it.

Brian:     That's amazing. When you are not doing all this stuff what are you hobbies, or interests. You mention Netflix earlier, does that mean you’re a Netflix nut, what do you do in your free time.

Justin Trawick:     I play racquetball, do you play racquetball Brian because I am looking for racquetball partners.

Brian:     I totally used to play racquetball.

Justin Trawick:     Like used to in college?

Brian:     Like meaning in college, or when I was growing up. Meaning I totally know the rules of racquetball and can play.

Justin Trawick:     Were you good?

Brian:     No but...

Justin Trawick:     What did you call yourself a sportsman?

Brian:     No, I am a recreational person. I don't think I would call it sports with the level that I played at. That's to say. For you, so there's racquetball and what else.

Justin Trawick:     I mean I do like my stories. Which is kind of like what women say about their soap operas but I do like watching Netflix. I really do.

Brian:     When you say I like your stories, what stories are you referring to. Like certain shows.

Justin Trawick:     Well no , like did you never watch All My Children when you came home from kindergarten with your parents or with your mom specifically. Unless your dad really liked soap operas.

Brian:     No, I can’t say that I did.

Justin Trawick:     No, me either.

Brian:     I escaped that apparently. Sadly I missed that from my childhood. I have been deprived.

Justin Trawick:     So I love a good dramatic television show and I think that is because the fact that I am also an emotional songwriter. I say that as a joke like my stories, because I heard people talk about watching soap operas and they call them their stories. Truthfully, I love a good story. I really do. This is sad, but this is true. I can figure out a way to cry during a commercial. If they told the commercial really well.

Brian:     That's amazing. Alright. In some time in your life I want you to watch television with Justin Trawick, because that sounds like maybe a Superbowl, with what they do with the commercials. It would be good. Tears would be involved it would be like an Emmy winning performance I'm sure.

Justin Trawick:     We will just put mute when the game happens.

Brian:     My favorite question to ask though, and I definitely want to ask you this is if you can offer one piece of advice what would it be.

Justin Trawick:     In terms of what.

Brian:     However you want to answer it. I am purposely leaving it open for you, it's a blank canvas, what advice.

Justin Trawick:     I would probably say see the sunlight.

Brian:     Say more.

Justin Trawick:     I mean get out, it is extremely easy especially when you work for yourself. It is extremely easy to live in your cave, to live in your own world and to just forget that anything else exists. It's very easy to not socialize yourself if no one else is doing it for you. When my last day job ended, i kind of really had to learn that. I didn't learn it the hard way but I kind of started off with a handicap of really not understanding it. So again, I very often at times Brian do not see the sunlight. I can be at home, I can be working or something like that and suddenly it's six o'clock and I'm like okay I am going to play a gig.

Brian:     You didn't leave the house until after it already had gone down.

Justin Trawick:     No you have got to have hobbies, so I play racquetball because I meet up with my friends, I get to hear what's going on in their lives. Then I get to go back in my own world.

Brian:     Alright get out and see the sun I like that. That's good advice. Okay one more time for those folks that want to find out more about you and all the stuff you have going on where do they go?

Justin Trawick:     My brand new website, JustinTrawick.com. There is videos, there is t-shirts and all kinds of music.

12/26/17 - Best of DC's Holiday Playlist - All Music Episode

Some of our favorite tracks by DC Music Rocks artists on the Listen Local First Holiday Playlist we released!  Next week we have Andy Fekete of Boat Burning joining us in the studio!

^^Episode Audio/Post Is Live - Click Above (might need to buffer/load, refresh page if you have any issues)^^

Podcast:  iTunesGoogle PlayStitcherPocket CastsPodBeanPlayerFM, or THIS URL in your app of choice

 

FROM TODAY'S SHOW

MUSIC

  1. Christmas Time, by Jason Masi (Pop)
  2. Santa Baby, by Veronneau (Jazz)
  3. Merry Christmas Baby, by Chuck Brown (Go-Go)
  4. More Than Presents, by Luke James Shaffer (Pop/Rock)
  5. Let It Snow, by The Harry Bells (World/Jazz)
  6. Santa Tell Me, by Sub-Radio (Pop)
  7. Give Love On Christmas Day, By Rare Essence (Go-Go)
  8. A Creditory Christmas, by Dan Wolff (Country/Folk)
  9. Up On The Rooftop, by Rocknoceros (Pop/Rock)
  10. Christmas Time Is Here, by Christos DC (Reggae)
  11. Love All Year, by Aaron Myers (Jazz)
  12. I'll Be Home by Christmas, by Staunton (Rock)
  13. Christmas Time, by Justin Jones (Rock)

->Follow The Show's Spotify Playlist<-

Happy Holidays, from all of us at DC Music Rocks!


Patreon

Would you support us?  We'd love to grow and do more!  We're giving away shirts, access to our private facebook group, and more!  We also intend to set aside 10% to contribute directly in the DC Local Music Scene through charities, sponsorships, events, etc.  We want to continue to pay it forward!

HUGE shoutout to our current Patrons! 
--Daniel Warren Hill  --David Mohl


12-26-17 All Music Social B4.jpg

11/28/17 - Special Guest: Lisa White, Talent Buyer for Pearl Street Warehouse!

Thanks to Lisa V. White, Talent Buyer for Pearl Street Warehouse down at The Wharf in DC, for hanging out with us in the studio this week!

^^Episode Audio/Post Is Live - Click Above (might need to buffer/load, refresh page if you have any issues)^^

Podcast:  iTunesGoogle PlayStitcherPocket CastsPodBeanPlayerFM, or THIS URL in your app of choice

 

FROM TODAY'S SHOW

MUSIC

  1. Always, by QOK (Pop, Pop Rock)
  2. Lighters, by The Chuck Brown Band (Funk, GoGo)
  3. Trouble Maker, by Eli Cook (Blues, Americana)
  4. Singing the Chorus, by Olivia Mancini and the Mates (Pop, Rock)
  5. My Baby Girl, by Justin Jones (Rock, Folk)

->Follow The Show's Spotify Playlist<-

ANNOUNCEMENTS

THE 'LISTEN LOCAL FIRST' HOLIDAY PLAYLIST IS OUT!  
We collaborated with the team over at Listen Local First and put together a holiday playlist of music by exclusively DC region artists.  It’s about 4 hours long!  It will play at local businesses as well as events around town for the holidays.  We hope you’ll use it at your get togethers as well!  If you’re aware of other music which should be on the playlist, send us a note, we’d love to hear about them!
www.dcmusicrocks.com/playlists

CAR DANCE VIDEO WINNER
Congrats to the winner of our car-dancing video contest, Chip Py!  I’ll be reaching out to invite him to be a guest of the show in 2018!  
See his winning video to Rare Essence here: https://www.facebook.com/chip.py.52/videos/vb.708319911/10155225437994912/?type=3

SHIRTS!
DC Music Rocks T-shirts and Long Sleeve Shirts are up on our website and available through Amazon, they make a great gift idea for your musician friends and family for the holidays!  Men’s, Women’s, and Youth sizes are even available in the T-shirts!
http://www.dcmusicrocks.com/shirts

SPONSOR PROGRAM LAUNCHED!
It’s a great opportunity for local businesses!  If you have ideas for us, please do reach out!
http://www.dcmusicrocks.com/sponsor

PEARL STREET WAREHOUSE ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE SHOW:
On Tuesday, December 12, Pearl Street Warehouse  is throwing one big holiday party for all the small businesses in the area. Complete with holiday rock n' roll by local favorite Jonny Grave and the Tombstones, food, booze and decorations, Pearl Street Warehouse offers teams of 1 to 31 people, the holiday party they deserve. 
     Participating offices will have the opportunity to name a specialty cocktail, display their logo on the screens in the venue, and contribute a piece of swag to the event gift bag. Equal opportunity networking and partying. 
     There are two separate packages for the event, $75 per person for open bar, and $40 per person with beverage purchases on top. Companies can reserve their spot by emailing events@pearlstreetwarehouse.com.

NEW MUSIC

Holiday New Releases
--Jason Masi - Christmas Songs & Musings (3 Song EP)
--Staunton - I’ll Be Home by Christmas

New Releases
--Lesson Zero - Lesson Won (14 Song Album)
--Broke Royals - Broke Royals (12 Song Album)
--By and By - Songs for This Old Heart (11 song album)
--Backbeat Underground, Aaron Abernathy - She don’t love me like I do (single)
--Peter Maybarduk - All That’s Left (single)
--Rent Party - Wasted (single)
--Area 301 - Can I Still Hit It (single)
--Luke James Shaffer - We’re All A Little Crazy (single)
Partnered up Mental Health Alliance (www.wereallalittlecrazy.org)
http://www.smarturl.it/wereallalittlecrazy

Our ‘2017 New Releases by DC Artists’ Spotify Playlist:
https://open.spotify.com/user/dcmusicrocks/playlist/24KrZD9KlUE2yC3eT2oBUI
 

NEW VIDEOS

Our ‘DC Artists Official Music Videos’ Youtube Playlist:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLtzE3kBQ_70kU0_uB-sdviWajkbzi2Akr

 

THIS WEEK'S LOCAL DC SHOWS TO SEE

http://www.dcmusicrocks.com/local-music-calendar

Dec 1 Fri
Olivia Mancini @ Pearl Street Warehouse at The Wharf (in SW DC)
Nappy Riddem @ Gypsy Sally’s in Georgetown (in NW DC)
Luke James Shaffer @ Shaw’s Tavern (in NW DC)

Dec 2 Sat
Of Tomorrow @ Gypsy Sally’s in Georgetown (in NW DC)
Sub-Radio @ Sauf Haus by Dupont (in NW DC)
Vintage #18 @ Hamilton Loft by Metro Center (in NW DC)

Dec 3 Sun
Caustic Casanova @ Rhizome (PR Benefit Concert) by Takoma (in NW DC)
Laura Tsaggaris @ Songbyrd Music House in Adams Morgan (in NW DC)

Dec 6 Wed
Lauren Calve @ Gypsy Sally’s in Georgetown (in NW DC)

Dec 7 Thu
Mystery Friends @ Black Cat in 14th St (in NW DC)


Patreon

Would you support us?  We'd love to grow and do more!  We're giving away shirts, access to our private facebook group, and more!  We also intend to set aside 10% to contribute directly in the DC Local Music Scene through charities, sponsorships, events, etc.  We want to continue to pay it forward!

HUGE shoutout to our current Patrons! 
--Daniel Warren Hill  --David Mohl



Lisa White, Talent Buyer for Pearl Street Warehouse

VIDEO - BIO - LINKS - TRANSCRIPT

LISA WHITE'S BIO:

Lisa White pic

Lisa V. White has been involved in the Washington, DC music scene in one way or another for nearly 30 years, first as a DJ in video dance clubs, later as a music writer and editor for a local free arts tabloid, artist manager, independent band promoter, board member of the Washington Area Music Association, and as a talent buyer for 21 years at one of the country’s most respected live music venues, the 9:30 Club (capacity 500-1200), from 1991-2013. 

The 9:30 Club has presented the best talent in all music genres, from Tony Bennett to Slayer and everything in between, and has won industry resource Pollstar's Best Live Music Venue award multiple times. While at the 9:30 Club Lisa also was part of the marketing, promotion and advertising teams; handled day-to-day operations for the club’s in-house record label, 9:30 Records; coordinated production and logistics for many multi-act events; and also booked and managed several smaller artist development rooms: Republic Gardens, one of the pioneers in the resurgence of Washington, DC’s U St neighborhood, in 1995 (250 capacity); Fletcher’s in Baltimore, MD’s Fells Point (325 capacity) 1996-2002; and more recently booked shows on the 9:30 Club's behalf at U St Music Hall (500 capacity) from 2010 until leaving the 9:30 Club organization in 2013. 

After a year off for relaxation, spent mostly at her secondary home in Austin, TX, Lisa was head talent buyer and operations consultant for Gypsy Sally's, a start-up 450-capacity Americana music club in Washington, DC’s Georgetown neighborhood in 2014. Following that she was a talent buyer/operations consultant for the Harrisburg Mid-Town Arts Center, comprising a 200-capacity music venue, and launching an 800-capacity venue for live music and other events in Harrisburg, PA. 

Website: PearlStreetWarehouse.com

Instagram & Twitter: @PearlStreetLive

Facebook: @PearlStreetWarehouse

pearl st.png

INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT

Brian:     On DC Music Rocks, we're shining a spotlight on the great songs, artists and incredible people behind the D.C. region's local music scene. So, Lisa V. White has been involved in the Washington D.C. music scene in one way or another, for nearly 30 years.

     First as a DJ, later as a music writer and editor and artist manager and independent band promoter, a board member of the Washington Area Music Association and as talent buyer for 21 years at the 9:30 Club from 1991 to 2013.

     After a year off for relaxation she spent mostly at her secondary home in Austin, Texas, Lisa was head talent buyer and operations consultant for Gypsy Sally's, which is start-up, 450 capacity Americana and music club in Washington D.C.'s Georgetown neighborhood. That was in 2014 and she's now at the new Pearl Street Warehouse.

     Let me say, it is such an honor to have you here, thank you for coming here and being with us today.

Lisa White:     Oh, well, thank you for having me in.

Brian:     And, now, that was my way of describing you, how would you describe yourself?

Lisa White:     Well, I did all that stuff.

Brian:     Sum up years and years of work in a matter of 30 seconds, yeah.

Lisa White:     Yeah, yeah.

Brian:     "That was me."

Lisa White:     I did all that stuff, yeah.

Brian:     Sounds right. Is there anything that I left out of there?

Lisa White:     Not really, I mean-

Brian:     Pretty much sums it up?

Lisa White:     I did college radio.

Brian:     Wow.

Lisa White:     I had my own radio show, in like 1980-something.

Brian:     Well, [crosstalk 01:29] it's an honor to have you back on the radio here, yeah.

Lisa White:     Yeah, yeah. It's nice to be back.

Brian:     It's a treat, my goodness. Now, share with us, it's called Pearl Street Warehouse, is there a story behind the name or is it really on Pearl Street, so they just called it Pearl Street Warehouse?

Lisa White:     Well, there's a story behind the name of the street.

Brian:     Oh?

Lisa White:     Pearl Street is a brand new street created in this development. It's really just a couple of blocks long, running from the water, which is the Washington Channel, to Maine Avenue. Pearl Street is named after a ship, it was a slave ship and the slaves tried to escape, with the ship. They made it all the way down the Potomac, almost to Mount Vernon before they were captured.

     The name of their ship was The Pearl, and so Pearl Street is named after The Pearl. That was in, I believe, the 1830s, it was certainly well before the Civil War. I was aware of that story, as part of the Washington D.C. history and so, I was interested in Pearl Street Warehouse for that reason. I liked the fact that the developers kind of paid tribute to them by naming the street after them.

     Pearl Street Warehouse, the owners of Pearl Street Warehouse, they also own Cantina Marina and the new Cantina Bambina, which is going to be down on The Wharf as well. They also have a record label, a couple of them, called Warehouse Records.

Brian:     Holy smokes, there's so much going on here.

Lisa White:     So, Pearl Street Warehouse, that's sort of the name, that's a long-winded way of telling you the name of the club.

Brian:     Lisa, I had no idea that was all connected, that is amazing.

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     Wow. Now, speaking of connected, how did you get connected into this?

Lisa White:     Well, I got connected through the 9:30 Club people, the owners of Pearl Street Warehouse, they reached out to the 9:30 Club to see if they were interested in booking Pearl Street Warehouse. The 9:30 Club said, "Well, no, you know, we kind of have our hands full with The Anthem and all the other stuff that we do, Americana's not our particular forte, but we know somebody who might be a really good fit for you."

     They put us in touch and I met with those guys and got along with them right away and I really liked their vision for the club. I felt like my background and the connections that I have could be an asset for them. I felt like I would really enjoy helping them to fulfill their vision for the club, so that's how it happened.

Brian:     Wow. When were you connected? This all happened in?

Lisa White:     March.

Brian:     March of 2017?

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     Oh, god.

Lisa White:     It was still very much a construction zone, going in there and doing a walkthrough, it was really hard to see how beautiful the club was going to become. It was really fascinating to be able to go through there and do regular walkthroughs and see the progress that was being made. To now be able to be in there, especially for something like Chuck Brown Band when it's packed and everybody's dancing and having a good time, just to feel that coming to fruition, it's great.

Brian:     That's it. Now, for folks who haven't been to Pearl Street Warehouse, there's chairs down in front, but if it turns into a dance party, in the middle of a show, will you guys take the tables out?

Lisa White:     No.

Brian:     Or, how does it work?

Lisa White:     Well, it's a very flexible space, so some shows will be like a full dance floor. On Saturday, we had another great D.C. band, Human Country Jukebox?

Brian:     Yeah.

Lisa White:     We did a dance lesson at that, too, a two-step lesson and we had an open dance floor for that.

Brian:     Awesome.

Lisa White:     But then, for somebody like, oh, who do we have coming up that's like an all-seated show? It'll be all-seated.

Brian:     Oh.

Lisa White:     We have a mezzanine level that's always all-seated.

Brian:     All right.

Lisa White:     That's up above and that's got a really nice view of the stage, but then otherwise, we just kind of figure out who's coming to the show, how many tables and chairs should we have, if any? We just kind of move them around.

Brian:     Yeah.

Lisa White:     If we need to have a dance floor, we can have a dance floor, if we need to have all-seated, we can, and we do anything in between.

Brian:     That's amazing. What is the, I guess what I was, I totally had a question and then it just flew out of my mind, it will come back, I'm sure it will.

Lisa White:     Well, I'll be here.

Brian:     Let me track that down. But, anyway, now, talk about you. You do this booking and, what about you on the personal side? Hobbies? What else do you do, aside from this?

Lisa White:     Well, I like dancing a lot and I live in Austin part-time, so I go down there and I mean, there's just so many great musicians in Austin. I really enjoy going out to see them, but then also, dancing's a really big part of the culture down there, so I'll go out dancing, you know, three, four, sometimes five times a week. Saturday afternoon, there's a really great dance thing, Sunday afternoon, there's a couple of great dance things.

Brian:     Wow.

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     What kind of music are you dancing to?

Lisa White:     Country, mostly, like honky-tonk kind of country.

Brian:     Ah, I got you.

Lisa White:     Yeah, yeah, so I'm two-stepping. Not line dancing.

Brian:     Oh, there it is.

Lisa White:     I'm not line dancing, I'm two-stepping.

Brian:     You said there was a dance lesson, did you teach the dance lesson?

Lisa White:     Actually, I did participate in the two-step lesson. There was-

Brian:     Awesome.

Lisa White:     Somebody else, Ben [Pajak 07:10] was teaching the lesson and then I was his dance partner. So, I helped with that.

Brian:     Wow, you got to demo the two-steps, though. I love it.

Lisa White:     Yeah, I did. It was fun.

Brian:     This is where-

Lisa White:     People were into it, I mean, really, I think we had about 50 people get up, to do the lesson.

Brian:     Do the lesson.

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     Oh, that is so cool.

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     I love [inaudible 07:30] Now, and when you think back on your career then, it sounds like you have so many memories, what is the biggest success moment that comes to mind for you, personally?

Lisa White:     Well, you know, it's always great to stand in the back of the room at a sold-out show and watch everybody singing along or dancing or whatever is called for the show. That's really the best kind of moment to have, I think, probably booking Booker T. Jones for the grand opening of Pearl Street Warehouse. He's from Booker T. & The M.G.'s and he's playing his Hammond B3 organ and he's playing that famous song, Green Onions, right there.

Brian:     Wow.

Lisa White:     Yeah, I mean, that was a real career highlight for me. It was a personal highlight to get to meet him and talk with him, he discovered and produced Bill Withers.

Brian:     Wow, that's just-

Lisa White:     He also worked with Willie Nelson and the Drive-By Truckers and a lot of other, you know, too many to mention. So, to be able to work with him and his family and his band.

Brian:     Yeah.

Lisa White:     Yeah, that was, yeah.

Brian:     You just reminded me, I wanted to ask you, when bands reach out to you, what are you looking for, when you're considering booking them? How does it work on your side, when they, "Hey, I'd love to book a show." What happens on your side?

Lisa White:     Well, I mean, you know, I have to look at the economics of it.

Brian:     Okay, what does that mean?

Lisa White:     The economics of it means, how many people are going to come?

Brian:     Got it.

Lisa White:     You know, how many tickets can they sell? I mean, it's going benefit them to play to an empty room and we're going to lose money if they do.

Brian:     Right. Exactly. So, if they reach out, what's the capacity of Pearl Street Warehouse?

Lisa White:     Well, if we do an all-seated, it's 150, if we do all-standing, it's 280.

Brian:     Wow, okay.

Lisa White:     Then we can, depending on seated, standing-

Brian:     Anywhere in between.

Lisa White:     We can do something between, yeah.

Brian:     So, if a band reached out to you and just said, "Look, we anticipate being able to bring 150." Does that make your job easier or is there still same amount of research that goes into it?

Lisa White:     Well, I still do my research, you know? Just to see, well, where are they drawing 150? Because, if I have somebody saying, "Well, we'd pull 500 people when we play in New York." Well, that doesn't mean, necessarily, that they're going to draw anybody when they play in Washington D.C., so I still have to do my research. I have people that I ask about certain musical genres that tend to know about those things.

Brian:     Yeah.

Lisa White:     I look at social media, but the thing about social media, it's so hard to tell where the followers are. Are the followers in this area and physically able to come to a show at Pearl Street Warehouse? Or, are they all over the country? I just don't know.

Brian:     What is the number that is the number that, if you go lower than that, you lose money, but this is the break-even point? What is that, at a venue like Pearl Street? Or how does that work?

Lisa White:     Well, I mean, you know, it all depends on how much I'm paying the band.

Brian:     Ah, okay.

Lisa White:     You know, that's my break-even point, is partly dependent on what I'm paying the band. How many people are in the band, because we feed everybody, you know? We give them dinner.

Brian:     Okay.

Lisa White:     So, if we've got a 20-person band, we're going to be spending a lot more, just on food alone. Not to mention beers, so, you know.

Brian:     Wow, yeah.

Lisa White:     Yeah, so it kind of varies. I mean, generally speaking, I need to be at least, just as a rule of thumb, I need to be at least 50% of capacity to have any hope of breaking even.

Brian:     Got it.

Lisa White:     Generally.

Brian:     Okay.

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     That makes sense. My favorite question is, if you could offer one piece of advice, what would it be?

Lisa White:     Oh, boy. Well, you know, there's just so many more than one pieces of advice that I could come up with, but I guess if I had to pick one thing, I would say, just be nice, you know? Just be nice, follow through, do what you say you're going to do.

Brian:     Be true to your word?

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     And be nice?

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     At the same time.

Lisa White:     Yeah.

Brian:     Got it. Do you have experience with that? Is that your own, personal mantra? That's what you do too, or is that more from experience from dealing with people for so many years?

Lisa White:     Yeah, I mean, you know, I think just life in general, you know? I feel like so many of the bands that we've had coming through Pearl Street Warehouse, recently, have just been like, "You guys have been so nice, you've taken such good care of us, it means a lot." It means a lot from our point of view too, when people show up on time, that's another one, please be on time.

Brian:     Public service announcement, I love it. Be on time.

Lisa White:     Yeah, you know, when people are on time and they're friendly, it means a lot.

Brian:     Got it. Now, one more time, for those folks who want to find out more about you and what you're doing and the cool things that you're doing at Pearl Street, where do they go?

Lisa White:     Pearlstreetwarehouse.com.

January 31, 2017 - Special Guest: Jack Gregori of Human Country Jukebox & NBC's The Voice

^^Episode Is Live Now - Click Above (might take time to buffer/load, refresh page if issue)^^

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FROM TODAY'S SHOW

NEWS

  • Used the Easy Listening Jams Playlist at a small gathering at my house, was a huge hit!  Shout out to 70+ artists on the playlist for puttin out GREAT music! 

  • We're up to 17 videos from DC area talent who've shared their Tiny Desk videos for NPR with us!  Check them all out on the Find-Browse Artists Page!

MUSIC

  1. Mark Trail - Jelly Roll Mortals (Rock/Classic Country)
  2. Last Rights of a Living Leg End - Cartoon Weapons (Hard Rock/Math Rock)
  3. Cant Write No Songs - Human Country Jukebox (Country/Rock)
  4. You, Me, and the Tennessee Blues - Tom McBride (Country/Folk)
  5. Doing Time in Pennsylvania - The Highballers (Country/Punk)
  6. Prairie Rain - Justin Jones (Rock/Folk)
  7. Intro/Outro music by Fellowcraft (Hard Rock/Blues)

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Jack Gregori

Video-Bio-Photos-Links

Bio

DC Music Rocks Jack Gregori (3)

With over 750 shows under his belt, you might call Jack Gregori the man who brought country music to the buttoned-up bar scene of Washington, DC. And while Jack has now honed a well-deserved reputation for genuine Texas-influenced country and western musical style (and attitude), his musical path began far away from the cradle of country music in Texas and Nashville. 
 
In 2015, Gregori performed on NBC’s "The Voice" to an audience of over 15 million viewers and was selected by the judges to advance on the hit show, eventually ending-up on “Team Adam.” Working alongside the likes of Grammy Award-nominee Ellie Goulding and three-time Grammy Award-winner Adam Levine, Jack’s charismatic baritone put him firmly on the country music map as a rising star to watch. Gregori’s multiple performances on the international hit show resulted in the eventual recording and release of two singles: “Feeling Alright” - the legendary Dave Mason song made most famous by Joe Cocker’s 1969 rendition, as well as, Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire”, both of which were released in the fall of 2015 through Republic Records (a division of UMG Recording). The national exposure has not swelled the native New Hampshirite's head, however. When not touring, Jack can still be found each week performing at his long-running residency in Washington DC’s favorite local bar, Madam's Organ.

 
DC Music Rocks Jack Gregori
DC Music Rocks Jack Gregori (2)

Interview Transcript

Brian:     Jack Gregori with over 750 shows under his belt, you might call Jack the man who brought country music to the buttoned up bar scene of Washington, D.C. In 2015, Jack performed on NBC's The Voice to an audience of over 15 million viewers and was selected by the judges to advance on the hit show, eventually ending up on Team Adam. Working alongside the likes of Grammy Award nominee Ellie Goulding and three-time Grammy Award winner Adam Levine, Jack's charismatic baritone put him firmly on the country music map as a rising star to watch.

                  His multiple performances on the international hit show resulted in the eventual recording and release of two singles, Feeling All Right, the legendary Dave Mason song made most famous by Joe Cocker's 1969 rendition, as well as Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire. They were both released in the fall of 2015. When not touring, Jack can still be found each week performing with his band Human Country Jukebox at his long-running residency in Washington, D.C.'s favorite local bar, Madam's Organ.

                  I went to Madam's Organ and I have seen Jack play, and it is truly a sight to behold. All the shows are a little different. They're such a laid-back group, but yet they play such fun music and it's different every time. Listeners, it's with great pleasure that I introduce Jack Gregori.

Jack:       Thanks for having me, Brian.

Brian:     Thanks so much for being here, man. Rewind now and tell us how music came into your life. How did that start?

Jack:       It was always there really. From the earliest I can remember, it was all about the music.

Brian:     Does that mean you came out of the womb with a guitar in your hand?

Jack:       Pretty much. It was a difficult birth.

Brian:     Was it always guitar? Has there been more than one? 

Jack:       Now, I actually started playing saxophone when I was a kid.

Brian:     Wow.

Jack:       Yeah, and migrated to piano and played that for a little bit and got tired of that. Really, what happened is I got a car and the piano lessons went right out the window after that.

Brian:     That was it.

Jack:       Yeah, so around the same time I got a guitar, which that was crucial.

Brian:     Okay.

Jack:       That was the way to go. A lot more portable.

Brian:     Exactly. So then you stuck with it all the time? Was it on the side? Did you do it in school?

Jack:       Not really. We played some in school and did it in high school and that kind of thing, but it wasn't the kind of situation where I practiced as much as I should as far as the guitar went.

Brian:     Sure. I got it.

Jack:       But it's been there. Just varying degrees of intensity.

Brian:     Then Human Country Jukebox is the band. How did that come together?

Jack:       That came together fairly organically. A bunch of current friends of mine met at an open mic at Bobby Lou's. It was hosted by the inimitable Silky Dave of Gypsy Sally's fame currently. 

Brian:     Silky Dave. Hi, Silky Dave. 

Jack:       Silky Dave. Hi, Silky. He owns the Gypsy's with his lovely wife, Karen, who I will not fail to mention.

Brian:     Got it. Karen, you are such an important part of that dynamic duo. We appreciate you, too. 

Jack:       Absolutely. We all met doing open mic and it kind of just morphed into this thing. Getting back to the naming conventions here, we had the same experience where you just sit there and try to brainstorm for hours and hours, trying to figure out what's our name going to be. What's it going to be?

                  I have sort of come up with this name for myself as a joke, Human Country Jukebox, because I just love this kind of music and we'd have get togethers or parties or whatever and people would throw out songs and I'd play them and it would just be the thing, so it was the Human Country Jukebox. Then, we just got tired of trying to think of a name, so we just came up with that and then sort of that was the way it was.

Brian:     Human Country Jukebox. At what point, how did The Voice come about?

Jack:       Actually, Silky, on a whim, sent my name into them to see if they wanted to have me on or audition.

Brian:     Oh, sure.

Jack:       I get an email out of the blue, and he didn't tell me he did this, so ... 

Brian:     Oh, boy. Really?

Jack:       Yeah. I get an email out of the blue and I'm like, "All right. This is probably not real. Let me investigate this." I looked at it and it was real, so I sent them back a message and they said, "Hey, do you want to audition for The Voice?" I said, "Do I have to stand in line?" They said, "No," and I said, "Okay. I'm in."

Brian:     Wow.

Jack:       The line was a deal breaker for me.

Brian:     The line? Really?

Jack:       Oh, yeah.

Brian:     Yeah, because it is a pretty long line.

Jack:       I don't like standing in line. That's the thing. Yeah, so anyway, went in and arduous, arduous process. It was fun though and it took a long time.

Brian:     When you say a long time, does that mean it was days? Where was it? This was in D.C.? Was it in L.A.? Where was it?

Jack:       I auditioned here, so we were at Cue.

Brian:     Okay.

Jack:       I went down there and did the audition and then, you know, you have to go through a number of callbacks and it's a whole thing. It's not like you audition and then the next day you're in front of the judges.

Brian:     How long did it take?

Jack:       Oh, months. Yeah, months. Half a year, probably.

Brian:     Okay. Did you get to meet the judges beforehand?

Jack:       No, no.

Brian:     It really is completely blind? You get out there. You've never seen them before. They're in chairs, facing backwards like on the show?

Jack:       Yeah. There's no interaction on our end anyway. Maybe they were watching from afar, but ...

Brian:     Right. Cameras or something. Wow. When you walked out there, what were you thinking? Were you just, "I'm going to nail this song?"

Jack:       I was thinking, "Don't fall down." I'm serious, man.

Brian:     Stop. That's it? Really? Don't fall down?

Jack:       Oh, yeah. Don't fall down. Don't fall down. That was it. Yeah, it is nerve-wracking. You go up there and it's quiet as can be and they start the music and you go. That's it. You have one chance.

Brian:     Online now, you can pick up a copy of the song you did, Ring of Fire, for your audition. Is that actually the live recording that's online or do they bring you in and you record that?

Jack:       No. Yeah, it's separate. You can still watch the audition piece on YouTube or whatever.

Brian:     By the way, if you haven't seen it, check out ... He's got two awesome videos. Check out Jack on the YouTube channel because ... What a cool experience, man.

Jack:       It was a lot of fun.

Brian:     Holy smokes.

Jack:       Definitely.

Brian:     What did you take away from ... When you came back after that whole experience, what was that like? What did you take away from all of that?

Jack:       Oh, it was surreal. I mean you don't get that opportunity very often. Yeah, coming back, I got a lot of from people that I had seen and had seen me play 50, 100 times, that worked in the scene, all of a sudden, like, "Hey, man, you're really good. I had no idea."

Brian:     I've seen you 50 times at the bar and now you know?

Jack:       Sometimes it just takes somebody else telling a person that you're like good to make you good.

Brian:     Oh. Got it.

Jack:       I'll take it.

Brian:     When you got back, you came right back to playing with Human Country Jukebox?

Jack:       Oh, yeah. Yeah. Just got right back into it. That's the whole thing.

Brian:     Was it different afterward?

Jack:       Yeah, it was a pretty big bump right afterward. It was a lot of energy and good energy. Yeah.

Brian:     When you say bump, what is that? Just more people?

Jack:       More people, more energy, just more action. It was great. Yeah.

Brian:     Okay. How long did that last?

Jack:       Oh, maybe three months of solid push. Then, you kind of get back to the routine of getting your shows in and playing. You know, back to the grind.

Brian:     Yeah, so talk about the grind, then, for you. What is that? It's Human Country Jukebox. How many shows a week? What's life like for you now as a musician? 

Jack:       Playing quite a bit still. At one point, we were doing maybe 15 shows a month sometimes. That's pretty intense. That's a pretty intense schedule. Sometimes, we were doing three, four, five nights in a row.

Brian:     Wow.

Jack:       It's fun and you do it and it's good, but that gets tough sometimes. Now, we're probably down to two, three times a week sometimes and depending. I've been intentionally pulling back a bit so I can focus more on writing and rehearsing if possible. 

Brian:     Writing, so writing for a new album? 

Jack:       Writing for a new album. Yep. We're getting some songs together for ... Hopefully, by the end of the year, we'll have something out. That's the goal.

Brian:     Rehearsal, what's rehearsal like for you guys? When I see you live, people call out songs ... 

Jack:       It doesn't happen often.

Brian:     ... and you play them. Is that how it works in rehearsal, too?

Jack:       No, we try and be slightly more focused if we have rehearsals, which is seldom.

Brian:     Which is rare.

Jack:       Yeah, very seldom. That's the good and bad thing about playing so much. The good thing is you keep pretty sharp with each other and you get that rapport with the other musicians and that's ... There's no substitute for that really.

                  The downside is everybody's so tired from gigging that you don't necessarily want to do it on your night off. You don't want to get into a rehearsal space and grind it out for four hours on a Monday night. That's the sort of double-edged sword.

                  For rehearsals, we try and be more focused because if we're going to be trapped together, it's better to have people there to listen.

Brian:     Right, and you've got to find time. In the rehearsals, you've got to find time to do the new songs, too, and put those together.

Jack:       Exactly.

Brian:     That's ... Wow. Now, when you think about you on the personal side, when you're not doing the music thing, what's life like for Jack?

Jack:       Well, you know work. A lot of work. Got the day job that I go to. Fortunately, it's flexible.

Brian:     Got it. Flexible schedule, that'd be handy. 

Jack:       Flexible schedule is good for a musician's life.

Brian:     Sure.

Jack:       You don't get out until three in the morning playing music and then you have to get up the next day and you don't want to get up at eight. Believe me. You know.

Brian:     I believe you. I know actually. Yes, absolutely. It's rough.

Jack:       It is rough. Fortunately, I've got the flexible schedule, but honestly, I try and do the music as much as possible. That's where a large chunk of my energy goes.

Brian:     Are you big into reading or you join a book club? Are you training for a marathon? Are there any other ... Life for you, you're a big foodie? You like going out on the town? What's life like?

Jack:       Oh, sure. Yeah, I mean if I can, I go catch shows. I go catch shows as much as I can in D.C. and sometimes out of D.C. Foodie, sure. The part of D.C. that's great is that the restaurants are amazing around here. I do smoke a lot of barbecue myself in the old backyard there.

Brian:     Excellent.

Jack:       Yeah.

Brian:     All right. A barbecue man, which explains why you love some of the ... Like I've seen, I know Hill Country Barbecue is a play that you play. 

Jack:       Oh, love it.

Brian:     That must be good eating that night.

Jack:       Love it.

Brian:     Shout out to the guys. If you haven't tried Hill Country Barbecue, you need to go try it. Go on a night Jack's playing and it's a combination. It's a heavenly combination of good music and good barbecue. That's everything.

Jack:       That's a great place. They have great artists that come through there as well.

Brian:     When you think back to Human Country Jukebox, what's the funniest moment that comes to mind as you think about the band?

Jack:       Well, we take a lot of risks with that band. Part of that is we're fortunate enough to play so much that we feel comfortable that if we take a risk and it doesn't go so well, we'll be okay.

Brian:     Take a risk meaning try a song and it didn't work out? [crosstalk 00:12:56]

Jack:       Try a song. It doesn't work out. My favorite is when we bring people up on stage and inevitably they insist that they know every word to every song and then we get them up and we say, "Okay, tip us and you can come up and sing it." They'll come up and it's just a train wreck a lot of the time.

Brian:     Is there one particular that try? What comes to mind? What song was it?

Jack:       I don't even remember what song it was, but there was a guy who came up and tried to make our bass player play two bass solos. Not just one. The first one went okay and it was fine. It was dragging on and after the second time, he said, "Bass solo," the bassist, Danny, stepped right in front of the guy and said, "This is over. Get this guy off stage. We're done." 

Brian:     Oh my God. All right.

Jack:       Sometimes you have to do that, but those are the kinds of things that I really like and that was one good example. [crosstalk 00:14:04] He threw some colorful language in there, too.

Brian:     Somebody told me there's a Jukebox story that there's certain songs that you don't want to play, but a good tip you'll do just about anything. Say more on that.

Jack:       That's generally how it works. I mean money talks. That's the bottom line with a bar band like that. Some stuff, we'll play for free and other things. Of course, everybody's down on Wagon Wheel and that's an expensive ... You're looking at 250 for that.

Brian:     Okay. All right.

Jack:       Occasionally, we'll make exceptions. [crosstalk 00:14:33]

Brian:     ... and you'll do it, but all right.

Jack:       Yeah, we'll do it. We won't like it, but we'll do it.

Brian:     Now, what's an example of songs that you do like? What comes to mind? We don't even need a tip. We'd love to play that.

Jack:       Oh, anything by Doug Sahm, who's just amazing, and if you don't know who he is, you're doing yourself a disservice. He's just ...

Brian:     Okay. Doug Sahm, check him out.

Jack:       ... one of those guys that transcends all. Yeah, Doug Sahm. William Jennings. Sure, Johnny Cash and those. Haggard, of course. Anything by The Band or Neil Young. We love that. All that stuff.

Brian:     Got it. 

Jack:       So those are pretty much free. If you're a good patron though, of course.

Brian:     If you come regularly, then you can request. 

Jack:       Yeah, sure, but I mean we don't turn down the tips of course. You want the tips. It's always nice.

Brian:     Yes. That's the [crosstalk 00:15:24] ... Musicians, man. Musicians love a little bit of cash. That's true. It's absolutely true. What do you have in your music collection that might surprise us?

Jack:       Oh, you know, Grease soundtrack probably.

Brian:     For real? The Grease soundtrack? Oh my God.

Jack:       Yeah. I know. You laugh, but they're great musicians playing on that soundtrack for real.

Brian:     Right. That's exactly what I think when I hear that soundtrack is, "Oh, listen to how good those musicians are." No, I'm joking.

Jack:       Right. I know. I know you don't.

Brian:     I'm glad that you do.

Jack:       Yeah. Totally. I like all kinds of stuff. Elton John, I get a lot of surprising looks about that for some reason and I don't understand. The same thing, I mean that ... Amazing artist, great musician.

Brian:     Yeah, he really is.

Jack:       I just ... Top notch. There are a lot of things like that, but I like it all. Judas Priest. 

Brian:     Oh, true. Judas Priest.

Jack:       That's one that I get ...

Brian:     My favorite question to ask ... The last one that I've got is what's one piece of advice that you would offer?

Jack:       Be nice.

Brian:     Be nice? Meaning when you're on stage? Say more.

Jack:       All the above. Well, not necessarily on stage. Part of our shtick when we do the Human Country Jukebox stuff is if you request a song we don't like, we might give you an earful and tell you where you can put that song.

Brian:     Oh, which contradicts the be nice concept.

Jack:       Right, but it's all in good fun. I'm talking about be nice to the people that work there. Be nice to your sound guy. Be nice to other musicians in the scene. Be helpful and be pleasant. That's how you get work to a large extent.

Brian:     Now, for folks who want to find out more about you, where do they find out more about you? Where can they go? 

Jack:       You can go to my website, which is JackGregori.com. That's G-R-E-G-O-R-I, or you can go to the Human Country Jukebox website, or you can go to either of those on Facebook or Twitter, if you like. It's @CountryJukebox or @JackGregori. Any of those ways. We have all the social media that you could ever want.

Brian:     Awesome.

Jack:       You can find it.

December 13, 2016 - Special Guest: Daniel Schwartz

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FROM TODAY'S SHOW

NEWS

MUSIC

  1. LanternFish - LanternFish (Folk/Americana)
  2. Stripmall Ballads - What Would You Say To The Woman With The Black Eye (Folk/Lo-Fi)
  3. Little Fox - Justin Jones (Rock/Folk)
  4. Remember Me - Robbie Schaefer (Folk/Indie)
  5. A Better Lie - The Cowards Choir (Rock/Folk)
  6. Unsung Hero - allthebestkids (Hip Hop/Rock)
  7. Intro/Outro music by Fellowcraft (Hard Rock/Blues)

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DANIEL (Danny) SCHWARTZ

VIDEO - BIO - PHOTOS - TRANSCRIPT

BIO

DANNY SCHWARTZ DC MUSIC ROCKS

Danny Schwartz is a DC native. He works as Production Manager at The Hamilton Live a block from the White House. He is also a professional musician playing around town with a number of artists and as a children’s performer. 

He is also a producer with BandHouse Gigs a local production company presenting shows over the last twelve years featuring hundreds of area musicians at the best venues throughout the area. 

http://www.dannyschwartzplays.com/
http://live.thehamiltondc.com/
https://www.facebook.com/thehamiltondc
http://www.twitter.com/thehamiltondc
http://instagram.com/thehamiltondc

DANNY SCHWARTZ DC MUSIC ROCKS
dan2.jpg

INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPT

Brian:     Daniel Schwartz is a D.C. native. He works as the production manager at The Hamilton Live which is one block from the White House. He's also a professional musician. He's played around town with a number of the artists in town and also as a children's performer. He's also a producer with Band House Gigs which is a local promotion production company presenting shows over the last twelve years featuring hundreds of area musicians at some of the best venues in town and throughout the D.C. area. Listen as a I first ran into this guy when I was seeing a show at The Hamilton and the artist was like, "Hey. You got to come meet Daniel, or Danny as he goes by. Got to come meet Danny." I got to meet him and just, he's one of those you meet him and he's just one cool dude. It is with great pleasure that I introduce Daniel Schwartz, known as Danny from The Hamilton. Say hi to everybody and tell us a little bit about yourself.

Danny:  Hey. How's it going?

Brian:     Hey there. Tell us about Hamilton and your role at The Hamilton and what that is.

Danny:  I'm very fortunate to be working for the Clyde's Restaurant Group. I love these guys. I have some of the coolest bosses in the world. I, as a senior in high school, when I went to school, I grew up in Bethesda. I opened Clyde's restaurant in 2002 called Tower Oaks Lodge out in Rockville up in the woods.

Brian:     Wow.

Danny:  I was a server and the GM there when I got the job with Clyde's as the production manager, ten years later, said, "Danny is one of the greatest guys I've ever met, one of the worst servers I've ever worked with."

Brian:     I appreciate your honesty. This is good. All right. Okay. Not a good server.

Danny:  Not a great server. I was very quick to change into nice clothes and start being a host so I could walk older people to their table. I really enjoyed schmoozing with the customers and making sure they were happy. When it would be down time I would jump in and be sort of a manager and bus tables and make sure everybody was having a good time and really get to the heart of what Clyde's customer service is all about.

Brian:     Right. I've heard amazing things.

Danny:  This year I'm celebrating my eleventh year on the corner of 14th and F. For the five years prior to Hamilton opening, I worked for The National Press Club as a freelance audio engineer up on the thirteenth floor of the press building caddy corner from us.

Brian:     Sure.

Danny:  I was watching. I used to go into the Boarders that used to occupy our 37,000 square foot space and as I saw it coming together and there was a great article in the Washington Post interviewing our owner, our president Tom Meyer and he was talking about what he saw as the vision of this music venue and who he saw being down there I was like, man, I have to be involved. I have to do this. These are my heroes. I've taken so many of the lessons they taught me and invested in me as a server and a host, and all the jobs I've had between I've been like this is how in the best possible scenario how Clyde's would do it.

                  I happened to be working one day at The Press Club in a small conference room, maybe this size or double this size, fit 75 people comfortably, and a 125, 150 people showed up. The audio end of it, putting up a couple table mics and making sure they were on was pretty simple so I was running around turning down the AC, getting water, getting extra chairs, doing everything I could to be hospitable, and the young woman who was running it said, "You know really you were incredible today. You went above and beyond. It was so impressive. Where did you get that from?" I said, you know, I was an actor when I was a child. I feel like it makes me personable. It makes me unafraid to approach people and all that but that really I spend a lot of time in the hospitality industry mostly working for Clyde's for a number of years.

                  I'd come back from college every year and go back to work as a host. They'd give me shifts and I really appreciated them for that. I really got a lot from them. She said, "Yeah my husband works for Clyde's." I sort of said, well that's interesting but it's big corporation. Everybody's husband works for Clyde's in some round about way. She said, "but my husband Dave Moran is the GM of the Old Ebbitt Grill and he's going to be running The Hamilton." I was like, oh my god. Hi. It's nice to meet you. I gave her my card and all I wanted to do was be a sound engineer there, be another feather in my cap and a place that I could call a freelance home as an engineer. It took eight months but finally I got a call to be interviewed as the production manager. It turned out I knew a lot of people.

Brian:     What does it mean to be a production manager for those who don't know?

Danny:  As long as you don't want to have any relationships or too much. For the first five years, plan on not seeing a significant other and it's a commitment. It's 100 hours plus a week really just wrapping your head around all these details, keeping a cool head about when they change.

Brian:     So you're dealing with the logistics when a band's coming in?

Danny:  Right. We book a show. I luckily don't have to do too much in that regard. First we were booked out of Austin by a group called C3 Presents. That was a big organization that gave us a lot of clout and let us totally get big acts that shouldn't have been coming to our room as a new room, but they said if C3's repping you, then we'll give you the benefit of the doubt and they loved it. The crowd loved it. We really got a really auspicious start for five years in as a restaurant and a music venue.

                  I would get the advance. I would get the contract. I'd reach out to their advance person. I'd tell them all about what we do and how it was going to be an amazing experience, that they were going to get world class food. They were going to get a world class sound system and lighting system and really positive can do attitude from my staff. That was important to me was to build a staff that was Clyde's customer service. I'm really proud of the staff I put together and it's a small, tight knit one, and we work really hard. I keep the gear running. I keep the staff scheduled. I get them paid. I make sure that we-

Brian:     You're basically running the venue and the logistics with the bands and the staff from the time the band knows they're coming in, to the time that they're there and they do their show and then wrapping up at the end of the night, that's Danny.

Danny:  That's me.

Brian:     And the team.

Danny:  Unlike a lot of production managers I came from an audio background so I wanted to be hands on. I wanted to be running the show. If they didn't have an engineer, I wanted to be the engineer. I wanted to mix them so that meant that every day at a certain time I had to drop my office work and jump into the show, push their gear in, set it up, work with them to make the show as good as possible, and see them through all the way until they're pulling away from the dock at the end of the night.

Brian:     Now with 100 hours a week, so what's life like for you outside of The Hamilton?

Danny:  I sleep.

Brian:     Okay.

Danny:  I watch some television and I keep only snacks in the house. I get fed there twice a day and it's unbelievable food and it's delicious but it's also restaurant food that comes with all the fixings of a delicious and not necessarily nutritious diet. It's all over the map. I try to have different things just to keep me interested in the menu.

Brian:     Sure.

Danny:  I put on weight that first couple years and I couldn't find enough time in my 14 hours on my feet every day to want to go to the gym and work it off. It was a lot of work. I'd come home and just collapse. For a little while I was dating somebody and living with them and they'd be asleep when I got home. I'd try to get myself out of bed just to spend a few minutes with them before they'd leave in the morning. It was tough. It was very challenging.

Brian:     You're looking trim so have you figured out the gym thing?

Danny:  Trying to-

Brian:     The eating thing.

Danny:  Yeah it's just about managing your time and your diet and sticking to the healthy items on the menu and stuff like that.

Brian:     What about the funniest moment that comes to mind when you think about The Hamilton since you started there?

Danny:  Man, some of them have been just rolling around with my bosses who are great, great guys who love music, who take me to concerts, who hang with me. They really are buddies and they love. I get texts and calls at all hours of the day and night, being like hey man did you hear about this? This is so exciting. I really love those moments. I don't know funny maybe. I don't have time to stop and laugh at things because when I do stop I'm just sort of blown away by what I'm getting a chance to do.

                  I feel very, very privileged and we've had unbelievable artists through and we've unfortunately, not to go on a complete other direction, but in this year, this awful 2016 of losing artists, we've lost this year and last some great, great artists who came through my doors and played my stage and made me feel like I was the coolest guy in the world for getting to have them and interact with them. Leon Russel, Alan Toussaint, Michael Burks. There's some really, really great musicians who played the stage and came multiple times and are no longer with us and I cherish the experience.

Brian:     You've talked about these big names so then what about a biggest success moment that comes to mind?

Danny:  Biggest success moment in the last two months I feel truly privileged and I'm getting away from D.C. musicians here but in the last two months we've had private events and public events come through the room and surprisingly not have those artists carry a front of house engineer, meaning they were leaving it up to us to put whoever we thought best on the board. I've mixed Emmylou Harris, The English Beat, Hot Tuna which is Jorma and Jack from Jefferson Airplane. Those are D.C. cats. They grew up, born and raised here. This past week was Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr. the couple that fronted The Fifth Dimension, sang Age of Aquarius and all those songs. Who's the last one? Dave Matthews, I should mention.

Brian:     Wow. Okay. Definitely a name that most of the folks listening definitely know. You've gotten to mix them and be the handler of their show.

Danny:  In fact with Dave, his guy came in, brought their own board, mixed Dave's guitar and vocal and then fed me his main outs into my board so I could mix it in with a band when Dave jammed with this large, five piece Cuban band that he had brought up. It was really, really cool.

Brian:     What a cool thing. Good god.

Danny:  Every day I feel very privileged to be the type of person who stops and steps back from the rush of a day and says, this is really cool. I hope that in 60 years I can remember doing this. This is really cool.

Brian:     With what you're doing, do you have any rules that you always break?

Danny:  Rules I always break? Well, I think there's not just one, but I always come at it from a production standpoint of the show must go on. Where a lot of people want to stand on their principles or on the rules that you've set out as a company, or as a venue, when that's getting in the way of doing good work or keeping an artist happy, I'm like forget it. Just get out of the way. I'll do it myself. Don't worry. I'm an advocate for the artists and I think that's often misunderstood as not caring about the people who I work with or my coworkers. That's not really it. I just-

Brian:     Is this like if the artist wants something, you give it to them?

Danny:  What ever it takes. If we don't have it in house, I'll send my guys out for it. I want the artist to leave with a smile on their face being like, already this is the nicest room with the nicest staff and the nicest gear and the nicest dinner, but they still went out of their way and do us a favor to make it happen for me and I'm going to tell everybody about it. Even the artists who don't draw very well and I'm not sure that we'll be able to have back, I worry I'll never see them again in my room, I treat them extra nicely. I'm like, whatever you guys want, let's do it.

Brian:     Make it an amazing experience. What about you as a musician? I know you also play tunes. Talk a little bit about that.

Danny:  As a musician, unfortunately the beginning of The Hamilton spelled the end of my playing career for the moment. Fridays and Saturdays are not my own, a hundred hours a week, all that stuff. You probably appreciate it as a drummer, I don't know how much franchise your band has let you buy into, but if you're a side man, which a lot of drummers and rhythm players are, you're just a hired gun. Once you're not available, they have to find somebody.

Brian:     You're a drummer and other instruments too? Drummer is your main?

Danny:  Drum is my main. Guitar and bass and piano and ukulele and a little bit of everything else, you know. I love picking up an instrument but I wouldn't call myself anything but a drummer and maybe a little bit of a guitar player.

Brian:     How far back does that go? Where did that start?

Danny:  I started playing piano when I was five, taking music lessons pretty shortly after my dad put some. I think one of your questions was about the first music I ever heard, or my earliest memory.

Brian:     First memory? Yeah tell us.

Danny:  Tie that in. My dad put a mix tape of doo-wop and 50's and that kind of stuff in front of me and when I wore that cassette tape out he gave me one of 60's and rock and roll. When I wore that out he gave me Please Please Me, the very first Beatles record that was released in the states. I used to go to the library at school and look it up in a book. This is for people who are old enough to remember, not using the internet, and I'd come home and I'd be like, "Dad. The next record they made was called The Hard Day's Night." He'd be like all right. He'd go to Circuit City on his way home from teaching at Montgomery College and pick it up and bring it home and by the time I was six I had every Beatles record. That's my musical bed.

Brian:     That's amazing.

Danny:  I think everybody deserves to have the Beatles as their foundation. I know there's a lot of argument of whether the Beatles are as significant as they claim to be, but I believe they are. I really think so.

Brian:     Now the last question that I love to ask is, if you have one piece of advice that you would offer.

Danny:  That I would offer to other people out there?

Brian:     However you want to answer it. That's good. What's one piece of advice that you would offer to the listeners?

Danny:  To the listeners, never close yourself off to new music. Don't think that you live in one genre or that your musical tastes are limited. Let other stuff in. Let it wash over you. Maybe you won't connect with it but like, the fact that lyrically and musically there is so much to be offered in the music scene in D.C. specifically and all over. What I love about D.C. is very few people I know move here to become a musician. You're either from here or you happened here after school or something, but the music scene is very supportive of each other and very inclusive. I played with a ton of artists in D.C. and everybody would show up at each other's gigs at the small clubs, at IOTA, which we're sitting just across the street from that I used to work at. That's where I met a lot of these artists for the first time and where a lot of them said, "Really? You're a drummer?" They hadn't even heard me but they had me out to rehearse and slowly we became friends and band mates.

Brian:     That's cool.

Danny:  It was great.