Interview: Midge Ure (@ City Winery, 11/2/21)

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Midge Ure (Photo courtesy Erika Tooker)

Midge Ure, the legendary voice of new romantic outfit Ultravox, returns to the United States for a fresh solo tour this month. Taking time off his successful livestream series, Midge presents “Un-Zoomed And Face To Face” at City Winery DC on Tuesday, Nov. 2!

And speaking of Zoom, Parklife DC’s Mickey McCarter recently chatted with Midge via Zoom to get details on the tour and all of Midge’s other current creative endeavors.

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Interview: Rick Allen of Def Leppard (Appearing @ Wentworth Galleries — 10/23 + 10/24/21)

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Rick Allen of Def Leppard behind his famous drum kit. (Photos courtesy Mad Ink PR)

This weekend, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and legendary drummer of Def Leppard Rick Allen will make two special appearances in the Washington, DC area to display his art work in two separate exhibitions. First, on Saturday, Oct. 23 in the Wentworth Gallery at Tysons Galleria, in McLean, Virginia, and again on Sunday, Oct. 24 in the Wentworth Gallery in the Montgomery Mall in Bethesda, Maryland, fans and art collectors alike will be able to browse Rick Allen’s artwork, including “Wings Of Hope 2021,” one of his newest pieces.

Best known for being the drummer on major hits such as “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” “Photograph,” “Hysteria,” and “Rock Of Ages,” the British drummer will have art of an entirely different genre on display. His new and extraordinary collection houses originals, limited editions, the painted drum series, mixed media originals, plus the Legends Series, featuring new portraits of Eddie Van Halen, Kurt Cobain and Johnny Cash.

Rick Allen took time out of his schedule to speak with Parklife DC’s Chris Smyth in advance of his shows. In an enjoyable discussion, Rick explained the variety in his artwork, a piece that he is currently working on, the influence and inspiration his youngest daughter had on his work, and how a trip to Walter Reed Army Medical Center influenced his charitable endeavors.

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Interview: Bob Mould (@ 9:30 Club, 9/18/21)

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Bob Mould Band (Photo courtesy Big Hassle)

When he plays the 9:30 Club on Saturday, Bob Mould will be making a homecoming of sorts. For nearly a decade, he lived in the District, and he has a long history with the club. For a number of years at 9:30 Club, he DJ’ed at a dance party (called Blowoff) for DC’s gay community.

Over his 40-plus year career, Bob covered wide ground and left an indelible imprint on the American musical scene. A native of upstate Malone, New York, Mould left to attend Macalester College in Minneapolis, where he would found the seminal band Hüsker Dü in 1979. A fast, aggressive punk trio, their music was a bridge between the punk era and the alternative and underground scenes that formed in the early to mid ’80s. Their influence was especially potent in their base in the Twin Cities (on the Replacements, Soul Asylum, and Guided by Voices) but extended to bands as diverse as, on the one hand, Dinosaur Jr. and Nirvana, and, on the other, Uncle Tupelo and Whiskeytown. New Day Rising was listed in Rolling Stone’s top 500 albums, and several of their albums are considered classics.

After the breakup of Hüsker Dü, Bob embarked on a solo career, moving into more singer-songwriter oriented territory with the well-received, mostly acoustic Workbook. In the early ’90s, he helmed the alternative band Sugar to some of his most commercially successful work. In the 25 years since Sugar disbanded, he has continued to grow and expand his range, running the gamut from his completely self-made, distortion-filled, eponymous 1996 release, to explorations in electronic music, District’s Lines variety of styles and genres, and more pop-oriented material like Life and Times. As he describes in this interview, his latest record, last year’s Blue Hearts, is a return to his punk roots.

Parklife DC’s Mark Engleson recently spoke with Bob Mould in advance of his show at 9:30 Club on Saturday, Sept. 18. They touched on a number of subjects, including his history with the venue, his creative cycle, and what still keeps him creatively refreshed and moving forward in his career.

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Interview: Scott Terry of Red Wanting Blue (@ The Hamilton Live, 9/17/21)

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Red Wanting Blue frontman, Scott Terry, performing at City Winery DC, June 19, 2018. (Photo by Ari Strauss)

Red Wanting Blue will kick off its “25 and Still Alive” fall tour at The Hamilton Live this Friday Sept. 17. Before the show, lead singer Scott Terry spoke with Ari Strauss about reaching the band’s 25th anniversary, the upcoming tour, and the inherent philosophies in appreciating live and studio albums.

Ari had the opportunity to interview Scott once before in April 2020, and that is referenced in the dialog below. Red Wanting Blue was scheduled to perform at City Winery DC later that year but, of course, COVID-19 made that impossible.

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Video Interview: Dear Daria (Debut Single: “Best Life”)

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Dear Daria (Photo art courtesy of the band)

DC indie music fans may well be familiar with the music of Maryjo Mattea, the effervescent local musician known for her love of The Beatles and wry lyrical observations on life and love. Over the pandemic, her solo act has grown into a band called Dear Daria, a power pop quartet that offers a catchy sonic mix of elements.

Parklife DC recently interviewed the band via Zoom about their origins and their pending debut album.

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Interview: Myles Kennedy (New Album: The Ides of March)

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Myles Kennedy performs at the Baltimore Soundstage on May 16, 2018. (Photo by Chris Smyth)

As the United States continues its process of opening back up and getting back to normal, the world of music is working to do much of the same. Records are being released and tours are starting back up. What had grinded to a halt is moving once again.

But in the downtime without live music, many musicians used that time to write and record new music. That includes Alter Bridge — and Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators — frontman Myles Kennedy, who will release his second solo record, The Ides of March, on May 14. In a conversation with Parklife DC’s Chris Smyth, Myles discusses the process of creating his new record, what a return to the stage will look like for him, plus what lies ahead for both of his bands.

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Interview: John Notto and Justin Smolian of Dirty Honey (New Album: Dirty Honey)

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After garnering national acclaim off of their 2019 EP, hard rock band Dirty Honey are finally set to release their first full-length album on April 23. Originally scheduled to record the album in Australia in the spring of 2020, Dirty Honey were forced to put their plans on hold after the travel restrictions were implemented due to Covid-19.

In a conversation with Parklife DC’s Chris Smyth, Dirty Honey guitarist John Notto and bassist Justin Smolian explained how the forced downtime actually helped them become a better band, and in turn allowed them to create a better record. The pair spoke about the entire preproduction and recording process, which famous musician was recording in the studio beside them, and their plans for potential upcoming tours.

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Video Interview: One Way Out (New Single: “Black Lungs (and a Broken Heart)”)

credit to Carter Louthian (CarterLouShoots)
One Way Out (Photo by Carter Louthian)

One Way Out recently released “Black Lungs (and a Broken Heart),” the latest single from their upcoming album, and the gents took the time to chat with Parklife DC’s Mickey McCarter about their new music, their methods, and their 2021 Wammie nominations!

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Interview: Jed Elliott of The Struts (New Album: Strange Days)

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Jed Elliott (left) with The Struts (Photo by Beth Saravo)

On Oct. 16, The Struts released the band’s third album, Strange Days. Managing to record a new album in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic proved difficult. But after a round of tests to ensure everyone’s health and safety, the band moved in together and recorded the entire album from a home-studio over the course of just 10 days. Recording in a way they hadn’t before, during a time unlike any other, The Struts managed to capture the emotions of this moment in history, while balancing it with the fun escapism that many seek through their music.

With the addition of multiple major artists featured throughout the album, and even a cover of a Kiss deep-cut, The Struts pulled off an album that is true to their style, while simultaneously advancing their sound to levels not heard before.

Soon after the album’s release, The Struts bassist Jed Elliott spoke with Parklife DC’s Chris Smyth about all things Strange Days and how the band has been keeping busy during the pandemic.

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Interview: Foreign Air (New Album: Good Morning Stranger)

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Foreign Air (Photo by Elizabeth Miranda)

A little over a week ago, Foreign Air released debut album Good Morning Stranger, a smooth collection of 15 songs that will keep you dancing along whether in the club or more likely today in your home.

Based in Los Angeles and DC respectively, Jesse Clasen and Jacob Michael formed the band more than five years ago, and they started working on the full-length debut album three years ago. The result was clearly worth the effort, as the new music swells with dynamic melodies and towering electronics.

Both gents formed Foreign Air fresh from other acts, and their natural chemistry kept them together while working across the country. Jesse and Jacob still collaborate from across the country, perhaps making them the perfect band for the pandemic times in which we live. Parklife DC’s Mickey McCarter caught up with the duo to explore their working arrangements, the achievement of the new album, and living up to expectations.

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