Tuesday, February 26, 2013


Last summer, late one afternoon, I got a call from one of my bosses: "What are you doing tonight? There's a band in town you should hear..."

Della Mae, in town to visit family before heading over to Seattle for a show, had happened to stop by Coeur Coffee, a shop my boss had heard me mention a few times. A few hours later a back room was cleared out, instruments were brought in, and Della Mae put on an impromptu concert for family, friends, and a few random people (like me).
I walked in to the coffee shop that night 100% blind knowing only the name of the band- no clue what kind of music, instruments, any idea what to expect.

Completely unplugged, completely on the fly, Della Mae BLEW. ME. AWAY.

Five young ladies- Kimber Lukider on fiddle, Celia Woodsmith on guitar and lead vocals, Courtney Hartman on guitar, Shelby Means on bass, and Jenni Lyn Garnder on mandolin- they are a POWERHOUSE of bluegrass music.

There's a certain pure, unaltered power that raw music carries with it away from recording studios, amplifiers, stages. Della Mae that night moved me to tears, smiles, pure musical enjoyment listening to their set. From very powerful traditional bluegrass hymns to their saucy honky-tonk songs these girls know their instruments, know their voices and their talent is undeniable. They blended together anywhere from 2-5 part vocal harmonies, all the different instruments, spot on rhythms, all on the fly. Undoubtedly there are countless hours of practice and hashing things out behind the scenes that go into a sound that well put together (especially unplugged), but these gals made it look seamless and simple.

Kimber Ludiker, a Spokane native, pulled the band together searching from coast to coast for the best female players. To say she was successful is a huge understatement- these gals are PHENOMENAL; they have an impressive list of accolades, awards, and industry supporters growing every day.

Since leaving Spokane last summer they have been going non-stop playing bluegrass festivals across North America as well as being selected to play as part of a 42 day State Department Exchange at US Embassy's across the globe (you can find video clips of them playing in all different countries on their web site)- no small feat.

They will be back in Spokane February 27th for a concert- trust when I say regardless what label of music you like, you do NOT want to miss them playing. YES, it's bluegrass. YES, I understand not everyone likes "country." If you like good music, good vocals and appreciate damn good talent, then you shouldn't miss them.

I can't say how much I truly ADORE Della Mae- their CD is almost worn out from dancing to it in the kitchen and singing along in my car. GO, SEE THEM (and help kick cancer's ass at the same time), download their music, check them out.

Monday, February 18, 2013

two penny post

If you've read my other blog Brain Vomit (shameless plug) then you're well aware of my all out in the open writing style- I'll carry that over here but maybe slightly cleaned up and with proper punctuation and all that boring stuff.

two penny post will be the home for all my opinions on books, music, bands, movies, events about town, ANYTHING I feel like voicing my opinion on.

I'm not associated to anyone, don't report to anyone, my opinions are entirely my own. Good and bad about that: NO filter. I don't have to worry about offending anyone, editing, filtering, any of that crap. I get to say what I want, how I want. Bad: well, there's not really a bad other than the fact that probably only 10 people will ever read this and the WHOLE WORLD deserves to be subjected to my opinions. It's not narcissistic if it's true.

What qualifications do you have to write?

I learned how to put a pencil to paper at an early age and can spell most words correctly. Do I need anything more?

Why should I read your opinions?

Because I'm honest. Whether you agree or disagree I'll make sure to say WHY I like (don't like) something and give you a few points to ponder. GUARANTEE not everyone will agree with my opinions. I actually LIKE that. Tell me why I'm wrong. Tell me what I missed (just say it nicely).

Some people may think I'm a total crack pot with no taste. This is quite possibly very true. Still going to write in case other crack pots with no taste want to know what's good or not. Don't like it? Don't read it. Simple as that.

Why two penny post?

A penny for your thoughts, my two cents, you get the idea. According to wiki (which is NEVER wrong): "There is also some belief that the idiom may have its origins in the early cost of postage in England, the "twopenny post", where two pennies was the normal charge of sending a letter containing one's words and thoughts or feelings to someone."

One standing promise: I'm not right, I'm not wrong, I'm simply opinionated. Every post will be unfiltered, honest, straight from me. My thoughts for you, two penny post.



#1: I AM NOT ASSOCIATED WITH ANYONE. I'm not paid to write this, I'm not hired by bands, authors, events coordinators. I'm not trying to promote any one specific person, place or thing. This is me, attending random events, listening bands, reading books, looking at art, ONLY ME.

#2: I've been known to curse a little in my writing. Ok, more than a little. FINE. I drop the f-bomb in every way, shape, and description as needed. It happens. If you don't like it, don't read it. No, I'm not undereducated. Yes, I know there are probably other words that could get the same point across. It's simply the way I write.

#3: If you happen to like what I wrote, that's great. If you happen to disagree with me, that's great too. The only thing I require is that if there is a comment you'd like to leave, BE CIVILIZED. I will moderate comments if they are violent, offensive, slanderous, or just plain rude. I will do my best to provide honest opinions in the most healthy way. I WILL NOT BLATANTLY ATTACK ANYONE, I request the same in return.