Spinster Records Will Be a True Hi-Fi Store, and It Will Be Awesome

Categories: Sneak Peak

Kathy Tran
Spinster Records is taking shape in Oak Cliff
Record stores all the rage this season. Normally the fall is the time for bands and labels to roll out new albums and promotional tours, but in Dallas it's the record stores making the moves. Off the Record, which opened a couple weeks ago in Deep Ellum, is a bar with a small but carefully curated record collection; Josey Records is going big, with a local take on the old big-box store concept; Spinster Records, meanwhile, will be an honest-to-goodness hi-fi store, a haven not just for record buyers but for true music listeners.

As owner David Grover and his team prepare to host a listening party with Sealion this Saturday, a few weeks ahead of the store's expected October opening, we got an exclusive peak inside the new space in Oak Cliff.

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Dallas R&B is Bursting with Talent, So Why Aren't More People Listening?

Categories: Columns

Ashley Upham
Local singer Kirk Thurmond sees a racial divide holding back the R&B scene
Everybody loves to see somebody from their city or town "make it." That's more or less a subjective thing, "making it." Essentially, whenever an artist manages to get the attention of the New York and Los Angeles tastemakers, they wear this vicarious success like a badge of honor. At The Prophet Bar's weekly Wednesday night jam session and open mic night I hear a story that has the makings of local lore, its details battered by years of being retold over and over and over again.

The story goes that in 1995 (or '96 or even '97) Erykah Badu opened for Naughty By Nature (or maybe it was Outkast) at the Bomb Factory and got booed off the stage. A few months later, after catching some steam in the major markets, she started to become the hometown legend she is today.

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The Old 97's Ken Bethea is Still Blown Away By the Toadies' Rubberneck

Categories: Columns

Jeff Scroggins
Ken Bethea, pictured in 2013 during recording sessions for the Old 97's "Most Messed Up"

This weekend, the Old 97's take part in Dia De Los Toadies Festival at Panther Island Pavilion in Fort Worth as the Toadies wrap up their 20th-anniversary celebrations of Rubberneck. With the Old 97's preparing to reissue their first album later this fall, guitarist Ken Bethea reflects on his memories of the Toadies and their classic album.

When the Toadies' Rubberneck was released in the fall of 1993, it landed farther out of the periphery of the Old 97's than most other music fans in DFW. We were going on our first couple of tours and preparing for the release of our debut record, Hitchhike to Rhome. This was in a pre-internet world, mind you, where getting information about bands was fairly difficult, but we also only had AM radio in our van so we pretty much just listened to whatever came on that.

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The Outfit, TX's Hip Hop Thrives on an Alien Perspective

Categories: Interviews

Courtesy the artist
The Outfitx, TX has got this shit under control
The lines "M-A-R-S. Mars, bitches," declare what The Outfit, TX, are shooting for with their current project. It'd be easy to chalk up the reference to the group's characteristic "cooly fooly space age funk" aesthetic, or even just the song's title. But it goes a bit deeper than that, because, to paraphrase Dave Chappelle, they ain't stopping at the moon.

The Dallas hip-hop trio's current project-in-progress is a five-part series called The Texan Chronicles, which isn't just an homage to the state, but a play off Ray Bradbury's The Martian Chronicles. Last November, they put out a double-disc album of the first two parts of the series, "Cognac" and "Four Corner Room."

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Toadies to Busk in Downtown Dallas This Thursday

Categories: News

Mike Brooks
The Toadies topped off the Homegrown Festival at Main Street Garden Park last May

Face it: You still love the Toadies. Try as you might, you just can't help getting all the feels any time you hear that opening riff to "Possum Kingdom." It might as well always be 1993. In fact, more so than you think: This weekend marks the seventh-annual Dia De Los Toadies (and the second at Panther Island Pavilion in Forth Worth), but it may as well be the "Year of the Rubberneck." Vaden Todd Lewis and the boys have been celebrating their signature record most of this year, and the festival (which will be two days, not just one) marks the unofficial close to those celebrations.

But if you need a reminder what's to love about the Toadies, here's a good one: They'll be wandering around downtown Dallas and busking tomorrow, Thursday afternoon, during the lunch hour. Because, you know, they just like to hang with their fans.

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Josey Records Will Be the Most Ambitious Record Store in Dallas

Categories: DC9 at Night

Wanz Dover
Josey Records is about to become the next new Dallas record store
Dallas is going through a bit of a record store renaissance. Over the past year, the vinyl comeback that has been root throughout the music industry has made its presence felt locally, as well. Of the stores opening, including the recently opened Off the Record and the soon-to-be-christened Spinster Records, the most ambitious looks to be Josey Records. Josey will carry CDs, DVDs and cassettes, but the main attraction is the mammoth inventory of new and old vinyl from as many genres as you can think of. In short, it will be a crate digger's dream store ran by a group of veteran crate diggers.

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DC9 at Night Mixtape with Demarkus Lewis

Categories: Mixtape

Wanz Dover
Dallas House Master Demarkus Lewis

Dallas is home to a significant number of producers and DJs that are well known internationally but mostly off the radar in their hometown. Demarkus Lewis is very much one of those DJs. It's highly unlikely any other musician or producer in Dallas has more releases under his belt. Lewis has established himself as a respected house producer across the globe. For this week's DC9 at Night Mixtape, Lewis shared his thoughts on how he got started, where he has been and where he is off to next -- plus, of course, a mean mix.

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Dallas is a Home Away from Home for Delta Spirit's Matthew Vasquez

Categories: Previews

Sam Kweskin
Spoiler alert: we didn't ask Delta Spirit about their rad sweaters

"We want to write epic songs so that we can do big, epic shows," says Matthew Vasquez, frontman for Delta Spirit. Speaking from a tour stop in Chicago during a lightning storm, Vasquez says that he is ready to return to Dallas. He gets his wish tonight as his band plays the Granada Theater.

"The last time we played Dallas, it was a ton of fun," says Vasquez, "but that scaffolding (in the Granada Theater) is kind of scary to climb on."

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Ejecta's Leanne Macomber Returns to Dallas Amidst Legal Controversy

Categories: Feature Stories

Serena Reynolds
Leanne Macomber lays herself bare for her art in Ejecta
Leanne Macomber has always been a nomad. One-half of the New York-based synth-pop duo Ejecta, the one-time Dallas and Denton resident has long led a transient existence. Growing up an Air Force brat, Macomber lived all over the country before settling in Texas. She's shuffled through different cities, different states, even different musical projects and performance identities. For Ejecta, art is a way of life, and life itself is fluid. But even she couldn't have predicted the events of the past couple weeks.

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Is Garth Brooks' GhostTunes Genius or Chris Gaines Part Two?

Categories: Columns

Courtesy the label
Chris Gaines, the ghost in the machine for Garth Brooks
After at least six years of radio silence, Garth Brooks brashly stormed back onto the country music scene with with last week's announcement that he would be going on a world tour before releasing a new album in 2015. On the heels of that announcement, Brooks also released his first new music since 2001's Scarecrow, a single called "People Loving People."

In a somewhat surprising twist, he also announced that his music would be available for digital download for the first time on a brand-new platform called GhostTunes. Brooks had long refused to make his music available for download or streaming on major sites like iTunes and Spotify, largely because he didn't want people downloading individual songs from his albums.

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