Acid-Folk Music Scene – Devendra Banhart

Sometimes you turn over a rock in the back yard and discover a gemstone you’ve been hoping to find to illuminate your senses.  The discovery becomes a prism that takes you on a journey of thought, wonderment and mirth. The prism refracts and reveals the acid-folk music universe where Devendra Banhart is standing at it’s center. Devendra Banhart is a psych folk cultural icon, a natural mystic who is shaping, defining and adding art/dimension/intrigue to an unfolding multi-layered music genre.

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I know I’m late to the party here but there’s still a slice of cake to indulge upon. I first discovered Devendra Banhart as a new folk artist featured in the Vanity Fair, November 2007, Folk Music Explosion portfolio.

Next thing I know I start seeing more references about him on the front cover of music magazines. Uncut Magazine features Devendra Banhart personal compilation of artists he likes, which was stuck as a CD sampler to the front cover titled, Love Above All, 11 tracks Inside the Mind of the Acid-Folk King. The CD is extremely listenable (unlike other samplers which are disjointed) abundant in vivid, colorful, influences that yield to discovery and personal enjoyment. The artists include Papercuts singing Unavailable, Kyle Tomzo’s Bicycle and Hecuba’s Peace and Money. Several of the artists featured on this CD sampler don’t have record contracts. Several are from Gnomonsong Recordings, an adventurous, fun, how it used to be way back when in San Francisco psychedlic days, record label.

Devendra Banhart is featured on the cover of Harp Magazine this month. He’s hit the trifecta in magazines appearances folks. You should definitely check him and this music idiom out for your listening pleasure. Acid-folk music is a tribute to and a furtherance of such 60’s artists as Pentangle, The Incredible String Band and the mystic flower child Donovan.

As I learn about this subculture music and art scene, I’ll try to write additional updates here.


Help the People of Burma — Post this Meme on Your Blog!

Note: This is a new kind of online protest that uses blogs to spread a petition globally. To participate, just add your blog by following the instructions in this blog post.

This not an issue of partisan politics, this is an issue of basic human rights and democracy. Please help to prevent a human tragedy in Burma by adding your blog and asking others to do the same.

By passing this meme on through the blogosphere hopefully we can generate more awareness and avert a serious tragedy. As concerned world-citizens this something we bloggers can do to help.

How to participate:

1. Copy this entire post to your blog, including this special number: 1081081081234

2. After a few days, you can search Google for the number 1081081081234 to find all blogs that are participating in this protest and petition. Note: Google indexes blogs at different rates, so it could take longer for your blog to show up in the results. Also note — if you want an accurate count of the number of blogs that joined this petition, make sure you scroll to the bottom of the Google results and click to view results that were omitted because they were similar.

3. If you know how to add tags to your blog posts, add the Technorati tag 1081081081234 to your post as well. This will make your post findable sooner in Technorati.


There is no press freedom in Burma and the government has started turning off the Internet and other means of communication, so it is difficult to get news out. Individuals on the ground have been sending their day-by-day reports to the BBC, and they are heartbreaking. I encourage you to read these accounts to see for yourself what is really going on in Burma. Please include this link in your own blog post.

The situation in Burma is increasingly dangerous. Hundreds of thousands of unarmed peaceful protesters, including monks and nuns, are risking their lives to march for democracy against an unpopular but well-armed military dictatorship that will stop at nothing to continue its repressive rule. While the generals in power and their families are literally dripping in gold and diamonds, the people of Burma are impoverished, deprived of basic human rights, cut off from the rest of the world, and increasingly under threat of violence.

This week the people of Burma have risen up collectively in the largest public demonstrations against the ruling Junta in decades. It’s an amazing show of bravery, decency, and democracy in action. But although these protests are peaceful, the military rulers are starting to crack down with violence. Already there have been at least several reported deaths, and hundreds of critical injuries from soldiers beating unarmed civilians to the point of death.

The actual fatalities and injuries are probably far worse, but the only news we have is coming from individuals who are sneaking reports past the authorities. Unfortunately it looks like a large-scale blood-bath may ensue — and the victims will be mostly women, children, the elderly and unarmed monks and nuns.

Contrary to what the Burmese, Chinese and Russian governments have stated, this is not merely a local internal political issue, it is an issue of global importance and it affects the global community. As concerned citizens, we cannot allow any government anywhere in the world to use its military to attack and kill peacefully demonstrating, unarmed citizens.

In this modern day and age violence against unarmed civilians is unacceptable and if it is allowed to happen, without serious consequences for the perpetrators, it creates a precedent for it to happen again somewhere else. If we want a more peaceful world, it is up to each of us to make a personal stand on these fundamental issues whenever they arise.

Please join me in calling on the Burmese government to negotiate peacefully with its citizens, and on China to intervene to prevent further violence. And please help to raise awareness of the developing situation in Burma so that hopefully we can avert a large-scale human disaster there.

Sam Beam – Iron & Wine

I discovered Sam Beam just yesterday on the corner edge of my radar screen. I saw his picture on the cover of Paste Magazine’s October issue. I thought I’d share his art and music with you. You know as much as I do about him now.

He’s quite soulful and eclectic. His looks are deceptive, but his music will find that place in you that has been like a sweet tooth in search of a chocolate bar. So peel back the candy wrapper, take a bite and give him a listen.

Iron & Wine ~ Home


sheperdsdog The Shepherd’s Dog – Iron and Wine Reviewed

Jazz as a Wonderful Spiritual Virus

Carlos Santana always speaks with respect and admiration about how we can lovingly spread peace to each other through music in the form of a spiritual virus. He should know for Carlos is truly one of the great healing musicians in our time.

I was browsing Carlos’s What’s On Carlos’s Mind? web page on the Official Carlos Santana Web Site where I noticed Carlos has been listening to Kenny Garrett a lot lately. I recalled I had seen Kenny Garrett play at the Santana All That I Am CD launch party at the Hammerstein Ballroom.(You can watch that Webcast from 11/1/2005 here, Rhapsody Santana All That I Am Webcast  or listen to the track here, Evil Ways/A Love Supreme). When Carlos introduced Kenny Garrett, he said triumphantly “Also joining us the real Kenny G, Mr. Kenny Garrett”. Kenny G. played a knock you out and then some version of John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme as he improvised masterfully on the alto saxophone for us live.

Well I must tell you, Mr. Kenny Garrett spreads a great spiritual virus with his recording Beyond The Wall. I picked this CD up yesterday and have been playing it non-stop ever since. The tracks are each a brilliant awakening. You are taken on a spiritual journey beyond the great wall of China, directly into a culture that Kenny leads you to .




Check out Kenny Garrett’s Beyond The Wall you won’t be disappointed!

40th Anniversary of the Monterey International Pop Festival

Jimi Hendrix, made believe he set the world on fire, yeah!

If you wanna find the truth in life, don’t pass music by
And you know I would not lie no, I would not lie down in Monterey
Monterey by Eric Burdon & The Animals(Burdon, Weider, Jenkins, McCulloch, Briggs)

Today is the 40th Anniversary of the Monterey International Pop Festival, considered by many to be the apex of the Summer of Love 1967. It was the first major rock festival in the world. As someone who has attended over 225 concerts in 38 years I have a very special place in my heart for Monterey Pop and the Summer of Love. Being a true hippie at heart, this festival to epitomizes live rock music, flower power and the love generation all in one.

D.A. Pennebaker had the foresight and vision to film this historic event and its available as a box set from Criterion Films. There are some great essays about Monterey Pop on this web page. The one I liked reading was the two part essay by esteemed music critic Robert Christgau.

Tonight on VH-1 there will be a special show rock Docs Monterey 40. This show will highlight the Monterey Pop Festival as a pivotal moment in the burgeoning counterculture. From the perspective of musicians, organizers, audience members and visual documentarians, it will tell the story of this historic event in words, pictures and music from conception to event to aftermath to historical impact.

A two CD recording from Razor & Tie, Monterey International Pop Festival has been released. It has highlight recordings from the various artists who created history those three days. It also has some unique liner notes by Andrew Loog Oldham. I especially liked the black and white photos from those California days and nights. I was very much in synch with the tribute on the back of the liner notes. “Dedicated to Ralph J. Gleason and Bill Graham, who helped bring the San Francisco and Los Angeles music communities together. Without their vision and forbearance, Monterey Pop would never have happened.”

Ralph J. Gleason was a music journalist who wrote the most insightful music articles I ever read. He had a tremendous influence on me as a reader of Rolling Stone Magazine and my musical tastes He very muched helped form and shape. His ear was uncanny and he was very instinctual with the music, the artists and the scene.

Bill Graham is the Father of the Rock Music Concert. I am forever indebted to Bill Graham for making rock music an art form. He nurtured live music, cultivated music artists, and dedicated his life to performance art. He is the promoter of promoters.

Check out the special Summer of Love exhibit at the Whitney Museum of American Art on view May 24-September 16, 2007. Summer of Love: Art of the Psychedelic Era

Artist of the Month – May 2007, Carlos Santana


Hymns for Peace: Live at Montreux 2004 to be released on DVD

On July 15, 2004 Montreux Jazz Festival Director Claude Nobs introduced Carlos Santana and his Hymns For Peace Concert as “the highlight in the thirty-eight year history of the festival”. Indeed, this was the very highest praise from the most impeccable source. Carlos Santana and his band of music makers and spirit shakers went out the at night and exceeded every expectation. We are all so very fortunate that virtually every minute of this event -even the rehearsals – was captured on video.

Performed by: The Santana Band with Guest Artists: Wayne Shorter, Chick Corea, Steve Winwood, Herbie Hancock, John McLaughlin, Nile Rodgers, Angelique Kidjo, Patti Austin, Barbara Morrison, Idrissa Diop, Omar Hakim and more…

Two-disc set recorded in High Definition