Thursday, March 12, 2009

Jack's Got a Brand New Band

So last Thursday on the Little Room, Ben Blackwell (the White Stripes "official archivist" / Jack's nephew) left a note for Nashville Little Roomers to contact him about "an event that I think you'd be interested in." Over the weekend pages and pages were filled with rampant speculation as fans wondered what was brewing in Nashville. Earlier tonight, The Event took place. And what an incredible event it was. Just reading about it makes me giddy.

So Jack White's new band The Dead Weather was unveiled featuring Alison Mosshart (of The Kills), Little Jack Lawrence, and Dead Fertita (once part of the Raconteurs on their first tour and also from Queens of the Stone Age). The Kills actually opened for the Raconteurs last year when they came to Vancouver for their second show in 5 months, though I had to skip it since they just had to play on the exact same day (a Thursday!) I flew to the other of the continent to see Ben Folds Five. Anyway... about 150 friends, family, and lucky, lucky fans were in attendance by invitation only at the brand new headquarters of Jack's label Third Man Records. As guests walked in, they were given a limited edition 7" vinyl of the band's debut single, hand-painted by the band themselves. Drool. Cameras and cellphones weren't allowed, but they had people walking around the room taking polaroids of you and the band. Among the attendees: Jack's wife Karen Elson, Meg White, Brendan Benson, and (somewhat bafflingly) Sheryl Crow and Martina McBride. From what I've been reading, it was as much about the opening of this physical Third Man Records location as it was about the new band. The building contains "the label's offices plus a vinyl record store, photo studio, dark room and performance stage." Sweet, time to go to Nashville.

Songs from The Dead Weather's upcoming album Horehound (due in June) were blared from the speakers as black and white movies of the band pressing the vinyl were projected on the walls. Then the band played a 20-minute set. Jack's on drums/vocals, Alison on lead vocals, Little Jack on bass, and Dean on guitar. The new single Hang You From the Heavens is already up on iTunes along with the b-side, a cover(!) of Gary Numan's Are Friends Electric?. You can also listen to it at their website.

This L.A. Times article about the event has even more exciting news. Apparently Jack intends to "reissue whatever music of his own that's out of print as well as recordings that are out of circulation"! In the same article, the White Stripes manager said "they've made a movie and there will be a new album out, probably next year". I'm thinking the Glace Bay show/cross-Canada tour DVD might finally happen? Fingers crossed.

By the way, on Friday I'm headed to Chicago for a self-proclaimed 4-day weekend. I have a Chicago-themed post lined up before I leave, but all this White Stripes talk makes it hard for me not to post this next stuff right now. As is the usual when I travel, I check concert listings just in case there's any interesting gigs happening, provided of course that I'm not traveling specifically for a show in the first place. So I noticed this Friday the 13th, British soul singer Alice Russell is playing at Schuba's Tavern and I figured it's hard to go wrong for only $14 a ticket. I recognized the name since she sings lead vocals on Nostalgia 77's Seven Nation Army, my second favourite White Stripes cover (Chris Thile takes tops). Since I found out about the show, I grabbed her 2008 album Pot of Gold off eMusic and I dig it a lot. It also happens to have a cover of Gnarls Barkley's Crazy, which the Raconteurs also covered on their '06 tour. To complete this little cover triangle, I'm still trying in vain to track down Gnarls Barkley doing a live cover Holly Golightly & The Greenhornes' There's An End (I know it exists!).

Nostalgia 77 - Seven Nation Army (feat. Alice Russell) [originally by The White Stripes]
Nostalgia 77 - Seven Nation Army (feat. Alice Russell) [Grant Phabao Remix] [originally by The White Stripes]
The Raconteurs - Crazy (Live) [originally by Gnarls Barkley]
The Legion of Doom - Crazy As She Goes [Gnarls Barkley vs. The Raconteurs]

No comments: