GCM was offered a direct audition with the producers of America’s Got Talent. NBC contacted us, with no prodding on our part, to come audition for the show. No lines, no waiting with the clueless masses who don’t know they suck. How tempting, a chance at national TV exposure for our little bluegrass band from Jacksonville. But we read the contract, in fact, we read it several times. The rights to our live performance, recordings, merchandise, publishing and touring are all things they would be requesting control of past a certain point on the program. These rights are the lifeblood of any successful artist, and we have decided signing them away to a giant corporation is not the way we want to find success. We have faith in our music, in our skill and in ourselves. We have decided participating in the exploitative, circus-like spectacle of America’s Got Talent is not the road we want to travel, and we will do just fine without it. After much consideration, this is the most informed choice we can make. And frankly, we don’t think we would be doing any great favors to music or art by acknowledging these kinds of popularity contests as worthwhile deciders of talent. We hope all our friends and fans will support us in this decision. Fuck the TV.
Jacksonville area trio Grandpa’s Cough Medicine just made their Orlando debut (Nov. 29, Will’s Pub). As you may have divined from their moniker, they’re a traditional bluegrass band. Comprised of banjo, acoustic guitar and stand-up bass, this combo is both true blue and amazingly talented. Like any authentic bluegrass act, those instruments aren’t just up there for looks or texture. In technically skilled hands like these, they’re weapons of expression. And there’s nothing like seeing masters at work, especially when they blaze the more storming end of the genre’s spectrum as these guys do. Between the banjoist and guitarist, in particular, were some real acoustic fireworks. They’re without the flash of rock amplification, but there’s at least as much technical dazzle here as most rock or metal shredders. And every time they go on one of their breathless tears, all I wanna do is dust the sheriff in my General Lee. The blend of rigor and ease with which these boys play is simply jaw dropping.
Original link: http://orlandoweekly.com/music/this-little-underground-1.1411912
Grandpa’s Cough Medicine blew the crowd away at Will’s Pub last Thursday night, the 29th with their picking so fast it was amazing the strings didn’t fly off. The three piece group preformed in perfect original bluegrass harmonizing heaven.
Standing across the stage in a straight line all in a uniform of plaid and blue jeans, they began with an instrumental song that picked the crowd up and prepared them for some fast grass. The crowd responded with good old fashion country stepping, swinging, and screaming growing more and more enticed by every note. One man even got down on his knee to propose a dance to the lovely lady of his choice. Grandpa’s Cough Medicine sang raw, tough lyrics surrounding the themes of drinking, ‘perpetual sinning machines,’ and vigilantism. Their lyrics embodied fresh recitatif narratives that enthralled the listeners. They amplified a perfect form of synchronic rhythm and rhyme that boomed through each person’s body and into their dancing or swaying steps.
Brett Bass was able to work the guitar at the speed of light partially because of his background in heavy metal music. Mikey Coker plunked his banjo with such ferocity in a finger flying frenzy that some people were saying it was the fastest they’d seen him play. While Jon Murphy slapped his stand-up bass at some points as if it were a drum adding an interesting addition to the musical trio. They preformed an array of songs from their newest album Murder Chord that brought more heart-hitting songs where they sing about real guttural truths.
One song that struck the audience as they struck their strings was ‘Julianne,’ which talks about a girl that leaves her boyfriend high and dry during a bank heist. They compose many of their songs to be compelling instrumental storytelling. Other songs, they choose to play in instrumental with extremely rapid plucking; one of which was ‘Border Patrol’ where they incorporate a classic Latin rhythm into their style. Their style at the same time, being in the genre bluegrass still can touch anyone with its versatile allure.
When told that they could ‘play all night’ by the sound guy Brett Bass said, “My lady’s not here- that’s the only time I go all night.” For their first time playing in Orlando, Grandpa’s Cough Medicine consistently picked the crowd up and never let them down.
All words by Rachel Gonzalez
Original link: http://lightthenightup.com/ltnup-presents-grandpas-cough-medicine-live/