Music Posts

January 2005 in Review


  • Low releases The Great Destroyer.
  • The Twin Ports Music and Arts Collective closes.
  • Nutty Meg’s closes.
  • Eric Ringsred and his son Miles plan to open a drinking establishment called the Cider House at the old Snyder’s Superstop. (It never happens, and instead Dubh Linn Irish Pub opens there in 2006.)
  • The Red Star Lounge is under construction at the Fitger’s Brewery Complex.
  • Mike Neal opens Splash Beach Club in the former Western Tavern. It briefly serves as Duluth’s only alcohol-free weekend dance club.
  • Management of the NorShor Theatre transfers from Chip Stewart and Craig Samborski to J.P. Rennquist.

Duluth Grants Available

The Duluth Legacy Endowment Fund is issuing more grants this year. The endowment has already donated almost $34,000 over the years. Go to the website for information and application information. Deadline to apply is Feb. 1.

The DLEF supports valued Duluth community programs. Anyone from a group involved in these areas should consider applying:

  • Arts and culture
  • Beautification
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Human service
  • Parks and recreation

Wood Blind – “Big Voice”


Some Wood Blind for your weekend.

Wood Blind featuring Teague Alexy — “Working Man’s Song”


“Working Man’s Song” is the B-side to Wood Blind‘s recent 7-inch single release, “Big Voice.” Teague Alexy composed “Working Man’s Song” roughly 15 years ago; it appeared on the Teague Alexy with Medication album Sun, Moon and Heaven. Alexy provides lead vocals on the Wood Blind version, with Jason Wussow on guitar and Veikko Lepisto on upright bass.

Darkhood – “Destination”


According to the blurb on YouTube, the Duluth band Darkhood recorded this single in the 1960s.

“These lads allegedly recorded this at Chess Studios in Chicago and then subsequently lost most of the copies of this 45 when it melted in one of their cars,” the video description reads. “The flip side is great, too. Fuzz guitar and catchy garage from the Northlands; ain’t nothing better.”

The tune was ripped for YouTube from the original 45 by the Hold Tight DJ crew in St. Paul.

Tin Can Gin – “Duluth” (live on the PlayList)


List of songs with “Duluth” in the lyrics or title

Olivia Blair – “Duluth”


Perfect Album of 2014: Red Mountain’s Scowl Lightly

PDDPerfectAlbumAwardLogo2014It was actually a late-2013 release, but Red Mountain’s debut album Scowl Lightly captured the most attention in 2014 among voters in Perfect Duluth Day’s poll to name the top local album of the year. Issued on vinyl and compact disc by Duluth’s Chaperone Records, Scowl Lightly brought band leader Anton Jimenez-Kloeckl’s evolving musical project out of the shadows of the weirdo-experimental scene to top billing at local festivals — with enough performance antics to proudly retain the weirdo label. In a review for the independent music website Wordkrapht, Ellen Vaagen writes that Scowl Lightly is “a baroque pop gem spattered with claps, bells, trumpet, and saxophone floating on a clear stream of fancy-free fun” and the band’s live performances “are a fantasia of dancing, face paint, feathers, masks, and flamboyant sequin costumes that encourage crowds to let their freak flags fly.”

Red Mountain 2013 band photo Red Mountain - Scowl Lightly LP cover Anton Jimenez-Kloeckl 2014

Perfect Duluth Day: The song, by Greg Tiburzi

We feel a little bit silly that we just found this tune this morning.
Perfect Duluth Day, by Greg Tiburzi, recorded in 2011.
Greg Tiburzi-acoustic guitar, harmonica, vocals, tambourine
Mike Mattson-electric guitar, vocals
Diane Eck-bass guitar
Todd Gremmels-drums
Steve Johnson-violin
Anne Fisk-vocals

Poll: Best Local Album of 2014 (Final Round)

Top Three Albums of 2014

A previous round of voting identified the top three albums by Duluth bands in 2014. Now it’s time to pick the award winner. Ire Wolves’ The Ascetic and Wolf Blood’s self-titled album can be listened to on Bandcamp. Red Mountain’s Scowl Lightly isn’t available for free listening in its entirety, but the single “Home” is on SoundCloud and there are videos for “Forestasia” and “Put Me Through.” Listen up, then pick your favorite.

What was the best local album of 2014?

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This poll is now closed. The results are:

Red Mountain’s Scowl Lightly – 40.6 percent
Wolf Blood’s self titled debut – 34.4 percent
Ire Wolves The Ascetic – 25 percent

2014: The Year in Duluth Gig Posters

2014 Duluth Gig Posters

This is by no means a comprehensive collection of the past year’s gig posters, just 126 of them that caught my eye.

Poll: Best Local Album of 2014 (Elimination Round)

Best Local Album 2014 Nominees

Among the 50+ albums released by Duluth-area musicians in the past year, the nominees are in for Best Local Album of 2014. Log in and click away to help us identify the strongest in the field.

What was the best local album of 2014?

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This poll is now closed. The three albums below will advance to the final round of voting:

Ire Wolves – The Ascetic
Red Mountain – Scowl Lightly
Wolf Blood – self titled

Favorite Duluth Albums of 2014

2014 Album Covers

Yes, it’s time once again to get all judgmental about the local music scene and pick the best albums of the year for further breakdown into a fancy PDD poll. There were at least four-dozen albums released by local musicians in 2014, which means few people have listened to them all. So, how do we begin?

Well, it’s fairly simple. In the comments to this post we ask you, the local brain trust, to mention your favorite albums from the past year, then we use that list to generate the nominees for the poll we’ll run a few days from now. It is acceptable, by the way, to nominate an album that came out late in 2013 and maybe didn’t capture much attention until 2014.

With so much local music being produced, of course, it’s hard for even devotees to feel like they have much of a grasp on everything that’s out there, but note that the list of albums linked above contains numerous links to Bandcamp pages where you can listen to many, many tunes for the low, low price of free. So browse, listen, or just spout off about how good the new album by your best friend’s band is and consider yourself an expert. It’s only rawk and/or roll, after all.

Charlie Parr – 30 Minute Music Hour


The self-taught guitarist from Duluth performs his Piedmont-style blues live in the Wisconsin Public Television studios in Madison.

Red Mountain – “Forestasia”


Perfect Duluth Day rendezvoused with Red Mountain on Goat Hill, and put together a little something special to get you in the spirit of hanging with friends and family this holiday season. Thanks to the Homegrown Music Festival for support in putting this together.

Find this video and other short clips of antics celebrating the season by clicking on this highlighted red text to view “A Perfect Duluth Christmas: PDD’s Holiday Video Showcase.”

A reminder: Homegrown band registration starts Dec. 25 and ends Jan. 31. The Winter Fiasco will be Jan. 30 at the Red Herring Lounge, Prove Gallery and Carmody Irish Pub. And the mighty Homegrown Music Festival itself happens April 26 to May 3.