Archives For daniel ellsworth and the great lakes

If you’re ready for a rock show, you need to head out to Exit/In this Friday night. Just sayin’. We won’t be mad at you if you’re not there, but we can’t promise you won’t be mad at yourself if you miss it. For those about to rock, we salute you.

Our good friends and house show alums Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes have been getting a lot of buzz lately, and rightfully so. In the past few weeks they’ve played several showcases at CMJ along with a fantastic set at Communion’s November showcase in Nashville. Their fast-paced six-song set reminded us quickly just why they’re one of our favorite bands to come out of Music City recently.

Just last week, their brand-spankin-new song “Passenger” debuted on Grey’s Anatomy. Couple that appearance with the band’s first Daytrotter session being recorded today in Rock Island, IL, and it’s a safe bet that the current buzz around this band just may grow exponentially as the rest of the country finds out what we in Nashville have been excited about for awhile.

The boys are on tour the rest of November, heading up and down the West Coast with a few stops in Texas before concluding their tour at Memphis’ famed Hi Tone Cafe. If you happen to be in any of the cities listed below, we highly recommend you run, not walk, to their show. Oh, and bring your dancing shoes, because these guys know how to throw a party. Check out the aforementioned “Passenger” below. It really showcases a different, more restrained side of the band and allows their harmonies to take center stage. We wholeheartedly approve.

11/9 – St. Louis, Missouri – Blueberry Hill (The Duck Room)
11/10 – Carbondale, Illinois – The Hangar 9
11/11– Rock Island, Illinois – Rozz-Tox
11/12 – Rock Island, Illinois – Daytrotter
11/13 – Colorado Springs, Colorado – The Modbo
11/15 – Seattle, Washington – Seattle Living Room Show
11/16 – Seattle, Washington – Comet Tavern
11/18 – Redding, California – Vintage
11/20 – Sacramento, California – Torch Club
11/21 – San Francisco, California – Hotel Utah
11/23 – Santa Monica, California – TRiP
11/25 – Long Beach, California – DiPiazza’s
11/26 – Yosemite National Park, California – Yosemite National Park **Private Event**
11/28 – San Antonion, Texas – 502 Bar
11/29 – Austin, Texas – The Parish Underground
11/30 – Fort Worth, Texas – The Wild Rooster
12/1- Memphis, TN- Hi Tone Cafe

Ok, I admit it, sometimes in the massive landscape that is the music world, I’m a little late to jump in the water. Every now and then I get distracted by the bright, shiny things way out in the horizon rather than the powerful waves right in front of me. Case in point: Saturday night’s house guests Daniel Ellsworth & The Great Lakes. I had heard of them long ago, even saw when Amazon named their single “Shoe Fits” the 7th best song of 2011 and their full-length one of the top 100 albums (#76 to be exact) of the same year, but still, nothing. Is that a boat way out there? An island? All of a sudden I’m turned upside down by the whitecaps tossing me to and fro, from track one to number twelve.

Once I finally waded back to my natural habitat on the shore, or Nashville in this case, and listened to their full-length, “Civilian Man” several months back, and I wasn’t able to shake it. And I have been all the better for it. The album (and from what I can tell from reviews of their live shows) is full of tight harmonies from piano man Ellsworth, lead guitarist Timon Lance and bassist Marshall Skinner, with drummer Joel Wren keeping everything in check from the backline. They were described by another blogger I briefly read as “quirky electronic-enforced indie pop” and as somewhat convoluted as that sounds, it actually makes pretty good sense of their sound. It’s a jangly, shimmery brand of indie pop with a small dose of folk thrown in to roughen up the edges just enough. The band cites Wilco, Paul Simon and Tom Petty as influences on their Facebook, and it’s easy to pick up some Beach Boys pop sensibilities throughout the album as well. At some points there are some casual resemblances to a more accessible Grizzly Bear (yeah, it didn’t make sense to me the first time either, but I promise it’s there!). Ultimately, to me, they come across as simply a helluva good time a la Dr. Dog, who in similar fashion, wear their influences on their sleeves while still are able to create a sound all their own.

If all of that doesn’t get you pumped to see them live at Cause A Scene HQ (aka my living room) this Saturday night, I don’t know what will. I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if the whole show turns into a small scale dance party, and if the band stays true to form, they may be doing a bit of that on their own on stage. The house show is an economical $7 at the door and will kick off at 7:30 with local favorites Isaac Hayden and David Jennings kicking the party off. We’ve had a lot of really, really fun shows this summer, but let’s just say the stage is set (pardon the pun) for our most show yet. If you’d like to come to the show, RSVP to and we’ll get you the rest of the details soon. Hope to see you all there, folks!

Brand new music video for “Bleeding Tongue” after the jump.

14 – Carbondale, Ill. @ The Hangar 9
16 – Brentwood, Tenn. @ Cause A Scene: House Concert Series
20 – Birmingham, Ala. @ Workplay
22 – Asheville, N.C. @ Emerald Lounge
23 – Knoxville, Tenn. @ Barley’s Taproom
24 – Atlanta, Ga. @ Smith’s Olde Bar

14 – Columbus, Ohio @ Rumba Café
19 – Nashville, Tenn. @ The Basement
20 – Knoxville, Tenn. @ Barley’s Taproom
21 – St. Louis, Mo. @ The Gramophone
22 – Bloomington, Ind. @ The Bishop
23 – Chicago, Ill. @ Schubas Tavern
24 – Lexington, Ky. @ Natasha’s Bistro

17 – Nashville, Tenn. @ High Watt