Steve Wildsmith

A cross between Rolling Stone, Soldier of Fortune and the Oxford American

Archive for the ‘Matt Urmy’ tag

East Tennessee musician, entrepreneur Jonathan Sexton returns to the stage

without comments

jonsextonJonathan Sexton outside of Bread of Heaven in Alcoa, 2011

The last time Jonathan Sexton performed in East Tennessee was on a stage in Maryville at the 2011 Foothills Fall Festival, but that’ll change later on this month.

Sexton, former bandleader of Jonathan Sexton and The Big Love Choir and a former member of Oversoul, Redhouse Project and The Whiskey Scars, will debut his new project, Badlands, on Thanksgiving night at Preservation Pub in downtown Knoxville. Since the launch of the mobile software platform Artist Growth — a project he founded with Knoxville expatriate and Nashville singer-songwriter Matt Urmy — he simply hasn’t had the time, he said.

“Everything’s finally kind of leveling out, and that’s why I’ve had time to do a band,” he said. “I don’t have time to get in the van and drive all over the country, but I’ve got time to rehearse a night a week and play a gig every now and then. Thanksgiving at Preservation Pub has a special place in my heart, because that’s when and where Whiskey Scars started. It’s just a good night.”

Badlands features former Big Love Choir members Andrew Sexton (Jonathan’s dad) and drummer Dave “The Animal” Campbell (also a member of The Coveralls and a number of other projects) on vocals. The group is rounded out by Andrew Bryant on drums and Aram Takvoryan on bass. It’s a cover project, Sexton said, and the guys play “mostly ’70s hard rock.”

“Thin Lizzy, AC/DC, Bad Company,” he added. “I was just looking for a reason to hang out and rock out, but with no pressure, and I wanted something that can exist without me. If those guys get a gig and can’t come, they can find a sub, where as if I’m the lead singer and the songwriter, that’s not the case.”

In the meantime, he’s looking at putting together an original Jonathan Sexton project sometime next year. He still travels to Nashville three days a week for Artist Growth business, and he’s looking at an August date for a wedding to his long-time girlfriend (and Big Love Choir bandmate) Elodie Lafont. In the meantime, though, he’s excited about playing music again.

“I want to play for the love of it and not to chase a career; just something on the side that won’t take up a lot of time but will scratch an itch,” he said. “I suffer from the same thing any artist suffers from — wanting to do someting different — but I haven’t had time or energy to commit to deciding on what’s next for me as a songwriter and an original project. I’m thinking real hard about it, and I still jot down ideas all the time. The songwriting muscle still works.”

Written by wildsmith

November 8th, 2012 at 12:53 pm

Matt Urmy: Deconstructing those ‘Lonesome’ sounds

without comments

Back in April, we caught up with Knoxville expatriate Matt Urmy (ex Whiskey Scars, Telescope) who’s making a go of it as a singer-songwriter in Nashville and recently released a new album, “Sweet Lonesome,” featuring appearances by Mary Gauthier, Jonell Mosser, Ashley Cleveland and more. He celebrated its release by singing with Gauthier (who performs on Friday, July 30, at The Square Room with Robinella as part of that venue’s “Dinner and a Concert Series”) at the April edition of “Tennessee Shines”; check out a video of that performance here.

Now, according to Urmy, he’s releasing a companion CD later this summer — “Sweet Lonesome, Deconstructed,” which he describes as “the exact album, re-recorded and stripped down to its bones, with a different cast … at a different studio.”

He goes on: “The reason for this is my desire to express both sides of the songs. Lonesomeness is a double edged sword, and the version of the record out now represents one side of that blade … the side that must persevere, and remain strong. Deconstructed, is the side that deals with the more private and vulnerable side of loneliness.”

No word yet on an exact release date, but if you purchased a copy of “Sweet Lonesome,” you’ll get “Deconstructed” for free: “It will be available for the first month as a free download from my website for anyone … and will remain free for anyone in the future who purchases a hard copy of ‘Sweet Lonesome,’” Urmy writes.

According to his website, Urmy plays East Tennessee next on Aug. 29 at an undetermined location, with fellow songwriter Leticia Wolf.

Written by wildsmith

July 19th, 2010 at 6:08 am

Lucero returns to Barley’s Taproom

without comments

After a November show that pulled them from their usual Knoxville venue — Barley’s Taproom, 200 E. Jackson Ave. in Knoxville’s Old City — Memphis rock outfit Lucero appears to be returning there on Friday, March 26. The Barley’s live music calendar for March lists the band as performing there that night as part of the monthly “Funhouse Presents” showcases, brought to you by that wacky duo Rob Levering and Derek Senter, hosts of “The Funhouse” from 8-10 p.m. every Friday on WUTK-FM, 90.3 The Rock.

We did a story on the band when they played The Valarium last November, and the group’s most recent album — “1372 Overton Park” — made my year-end best-of list for 2009. Check out Lucero online here; no word yet on how much tickets might be or who the opening act is — our fingers are crossed for Glossary, the Murfreesboro-based band that frequently collaborates with Lucero and just put out a new CD, “Feral Fire,” on Lucero’s Liberty and Lament label.

Other notable March shows at Barley’s: Shannon McNally on Friday, March 5 … The Dynamites featuring Charles Walker on Saturday, March 6 … a CD release show by Knoxville expatriate and Nashville singer-songwriter Matt Urmy on Friday, March 12 … and former Dixie Dirt front woman/singer-songwriter Kat Brock on Sunday, March 21.

UPDATE: Tickets to the Lucero show will be $13 in advance and $15 at the door; still no word on opening bands. (Still crossing fingers for Glossary.) Call Barley’s at 521-0092 for more information.

Matt Urmy needs a little help, ASAP!

without comments

Got an e-mail update from singer-songwriter Matt Urmy, a Knoxville expatriate now living and working in Nashville. We last interviewed him in June, when he released “New Season Comin,’” his most recent album. And now it seems like the follow-up is coming sooner rather than later. Here’s Matt:

Hello Friends and Family,

I am writing to tell you about an amazing opportunity that has popped up for me. After seeing me perform a couple of weeks ago, a music producer at Belmont University has offered to take me into Quonset Studios here in Nashville (where Patsy Cline and Jonny Cash used to make records), and pay for me to make a new record.

He has offered to pay for the studio, engineers, mixing, mastering, and manufacturing of the CDs…and i get to keep the masters! All i have to do is pay for the musicians i want to bring in to the sessions. Since I found out late last week about all of this…and the sessions begin THIS SATURDAY, i am hiring some pros to come cut the tracks with me…and this is the only cost i will have to take on myself.

SO, i am offering a pre-sale of the album, through paypal (so it is easily archived all who contribute), and i need to sell 80 records to be able to afford these musicians! Any of you who know that it costs to hire Nashville pros knows that I am getting a major favor done for me by these musicians (they are having mercy on a poor man! :) , and they have agreed to do it for a seriously cut rate.  So, if you have 10 to spare, click the link below to pre-purchase your copy of the record, and help me take advantage of this amazing opportunity…your help is so appreciated!!!!!

Click here if you’d like to contribute. And be sure and check out Matt online.

Written by wildsmith

November 10th, 2009 at 8:43 am

Posted in Music

Tagged with

Speaking of new music … a roundup of free mp3s as of Thursday, June 2, 2009

without comments

Man. We’re so grateful to all of the artists who have allowed us to give away free music. It’s an eclectic mix of bands, mostly local, and we hope it whets your appetite for getting out and supporting all of the amazing artists we have in East Tennessee.

The most recent — singer-songwriter Matt Urmy, who releases a new album, “New Season Comin’,” on Friday night, June 3, at Barley’s Taproom in Knoxville’s Old City. We wrote about him in this week’s Weekend section, and for a limited time, he’s allowing us to give away a honky-tonk flavored track from the new record: “Cry Freedom.” It’s good, good stuff.

Read this week’s interview: Click here

Download “Cry Freedom,” by Matt Urmy: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Purchase “New Season Comin’” and other albums by Matt Urmy: Click here

While we’re at it, here’s the music other artists have granted us permission to give away. Please, support them by giving it a listen, seeing them perform live and, by all means, if you like a song, BUY THE RECORD!

“Long Time,” by Mic Harrison and The High Score: right-click here (choose “Save Link As” or “Save Target As”)
Buy albums by Mic Harrison, from his solo work to his collaborations with The High Score: click here

“All Her Tears,” by the Kevin Abernathy Band: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy Kevin Abernathy’s CDs on CD Baby: Click here

“Fun Religion,” by Teenage Love13: Right-click here (choose “Save Link As” or “Save Target As”)
Buy “No Excuses,” Teenage Love’s most recent album: Click here

“Blackwater Swamp,” by Melungeons: Right-click here (choose “Save Link As” or “Save Target As”)

“Empire,” by R.B. Morris: right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
“City,” by R.B. Morris:
right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy “Empire” by R.B. Morris: click here

“Cervical Dislocation,” by Facelock: right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
“Defy,” by Facelock: right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)

“Pursue the Enemy,” by Against the Oppositionright-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)

“She’s a Heartbreak,” by The High Score: Right-click here (select “Save Link As” or “Save Target As”)

“Gone Again,” by The LoneTones: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Purchase LoneTones music online: Click here

“The Motor Mile,” by 1220: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy 1220 music: Check the 1220 Myspace site frequently for links

“Midnight,” by The Black Lillies: Right click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy “Whiskey Angel,” by The Black Lillies: Click here

“Lookin’ for a Thrill,” by John Paul Keith and the One Four Fives: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As” to download)
Buy “Spills and Thrills,” the new album by JPK and the One Four Fives: On Amazon.com, or on iTunes.

“Friday (Pay Day),” by Space Capone: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
“I Just Wanna Dance,” by Space Capone: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Space Capone on Myspace (where you can find a link to buying his music on iTunes): Click here

“Tupelo,” by Scissormen: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy Scissormen music: Click here

“Pilgrim,” by Red Collar: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy Red Collar’s CD: Click here

“Heavy Load,” by the Deadstring Brothers: Right-click here (choose “Save Target As” or “Save Link As”)
Buy Deadstring Brothers music: Click here