Entries for February 2018

  • Just What I Needed

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    Hello Troubadourians! How many instruments do you own? If you’re a guitar player, how many guitars do you own? On average, guitarists own seven guitars. That would make me average because that’s how many I own. I may rate an exception, though, because three of them are “projects” that have been delayed so they are […]

  • Thoughts from a Truck Stop

    From the Archives Back in the early days of the Troubadour, around 2001-2002, we had a writer whose columns I would always look forward to. His name was Les Brennan; his pen name, which he and Lyle Duplessie cooked up, was Jimmy Diesel White. The thing is, I’d have to call him multiple times to […]

  • The House That Love Built: Steph Johnson and Rob Thorsen

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    Steph Johnson points out the filigree around the front door. The framing is ornate but not ostentatious, revealing the Queen Anne heritage of the house. “The house was built in the 1800s,” she says. Next on the house tour is the guest room, with a beautiful view of the mountains. The home that Johnson shares […]

  • February 2018 Calendar

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  • Mary McCaslin

    We were putting on a Lightnin’ Hopkins concert at the Bifrost Bridge coffeehouse back in the late ’60s and needed an opening act. Conrad von Metzke who was really in charge of the thing got in touch with Ed Douglas at the Blue Guitar who recommended this young singer-songwriter named Mary McCaslin, whom he had […]

  • Johnny Ciccolella: A Man of Art (1957-2018)

    On Friday, January 19, Johnny Ciccolella woke up for the last time. That morning he suffered a stroke that was catastrophic. Very suddenly, I was among a swelling group of family, friends, and acquaintances who were trying to absorb the news, still looking for hope that he would survive. I dared to think that I’d […]

  • MIKE McGILL: Good Morning Afternoon

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    Good Morning Afternoon is the latest album from Mike McGill, a North County singer/songwriter who describes his music as “a little surf/ meets folk/meets rockmeets pop.” McGill wears his debt to the laid-back surf/beach soft rock music of Jack Johnson and Donavon Frankenreiter on his sleeve, and these influences aren’t a bad place to mine […]


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    Nathan Raney’s musical bloodlines run deep; he started on drums in grade school, then bass, and started guitar and writing in high school. The guitar DNA comes from dad Jerry, who has played with Glory, the Beat Farmers, and now heads up the Farmers–and frequently adds Nathan during live sets for some lightning-fingered guitar spots. […]

  • Nathan Raney: A Beat Farmer’s Son Sows His Own Seeds

    I see nothing on the Horizon I see nothing from where I came I have nothing but the planks I lie on While my minds floating away –Nathan Raney, “Dead Sea” Nathan Raney’s new self-titled album opens with the notes of a lonely guitar, an acoustic steel string with plenty of live timbre and string […]