Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Vive la Poulet!

Howdy all...

I'll admit it. I know close to no French, but I did get through that Blog title, so I'll give myself a little pat on the back. I've got France on the mind as we just got notice of our first review over there, all the while I'm sitting in a delicious bakery, Tartine, here in San Francisco. I'm on the otherside of my usual coast, enjoying recovery from the tour/my back injury which I'm not sure if we mentioned here on the blog. I'm sure Emmy will post video soon of her "get well soon" acapella number. VERY impressive.

After a long tour, the downtime is much needed, and it doesn't hurt that the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival is going on here this weekend! AWESOME! Hopefully some year The Sweetbacks Sisters will get to play there, but I wont hold my breath!

So, first things first. Fried Chicken.
New York doesn't know it, but there is some mighty fine chicken to be had in our fine burroughs. I'd like to thank Miss McFadden for sending this New York Magazine article our way. It's entitled EXTRA CRISPY.

Second things second. Fried chicken.
I'm not sure if anyone else told you, but Emily, Jesse, Stefan, and I all experienced a fried chicken beyond belief while in Raleigh, NC. Come 4pm The Berkeley Cafe was not ready for load-in so they suggest we go down the road to the "Mecca" restaraunt. There we were greeted warmly by the 3 team staff: hostess, waitress, and cook (who went out for a cigarette as soon as our order was in (Love it!) I'm a frequent patron of the old-school/mom 'n pop shop/dives so I appreciate these kind of flaws, but boy did we (eventually) get some good grub. Freshly sweet/mixed teas, green beans, beets, macaroni salads, and fried chicken so good it'll make your heart skip a beat (probably not in a good way...) I'll post photos soon. I got some lovely shots here.

I haven't checked it out myself yet, but the entire show at the Berkeley Cafe in Raleigh, NC is now posted at this site The Internet Archive. If you have a show of our you'd like to share put it up there! Here's the direct link as well: http://www.archive.org/details/sweetbacksisters2009-09-23 but I'll tell you right now... try not to get to overwhelmed by the applause. All 10 of our audience members were small but MIGHTY!

Third things third... You guessed it... Fried Chicken.

Okay I'm going to get back to some french buttery goodness, and this cup of coffee.

Enjoy the day where ever you are.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009


I find Ashville very nice.
We hit the taqueria twice.
It rained a lot, my feet got wet,
My shoes have not dried out as yet.


Dreaming of Pancakes Past...

There's a lot of things I like about Virginia. This particular trip I found myself swooning over southern style architecture, the crispness in the air, and the turning leaves. *sigh* But in Charlottesville, VA our dear friends and hosts Jesse Harper and Adam Larrabee brought another style of beauty into our lives. These fine gentlemen brought the The Sweetback crew to a fine establishment called the Blue Moon Diner. Not only do they have fresh 'n tasty ingredients, but they have a way with... powdered sugar.

This particular morning the special was a Christopher Walkin (with Dwight from The Office on the side) These cakes were little pieces of art, and didn't taste too shabby either! But I wont lie, I dont care how fancy you make em, pancakes aren't nearly as amazing without real maple syrup. no way! no how!

Who's hungry???


Blogging from Greensboro

We just played at The Garage in Winston-Salem, NC. I love that place!

Here's a picture of a the show courtesy of our friend Linda (who is currently feeding us amazing pesto pasta and Green Flashes!)

And here is a picture of the Green Flashes. The name is no joke!

Thanks, Linda!

Monday, September 21, 2009


Gentle readers, I confess,
I've been, of late, inspirationless.
I've had the will and had the time,
To write insipid little rhymes,
But from my pen these have not sprung,
and neither from my keys nor tongue.

So here's what I resolve to do:
Compose each day a line or two,
And post them on this humble site,
At least the good ones that I like.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Passim debut

As Zara mentioned earlier, we had an awesome time sharing bills with Joy Kills Sorrow last week. They're fabulous! [Check out the video below for audiovisual proof]

The second of those shows was at the legendary Club Passim in Cambridge, where we enjoyed ourselves immensely. Matt Smith, who runs the club, is a top-notch fellow. He ran the evening (and the sound!!) beautifully.

Lots of wonderful people were in the audience, including Jeffrey Remz of Country Standard Time, who wrote a nice review (Thanks!). Here are some excerpts:

"The sextet is a country-based group with bases in those country hotbeds of Brooklyn and western Massachusetts with sweet sweet vocal harmonies courtesy of female lead singers Emily Miller and Zara Bode.

The group released their debut, "Chicken Ain't Chicken," a few months back on western Massachusetts indie label Signature Sounds, and it's a keeper. The singers sound like they've been doing it for a long long time with their voices blending together very nicely. In concert, they started out slowly on a song by the late Clayton McMichen of Skillet Lickers fame. The song started slow, but they picked it right up with a good blending of voices. This was telling of what was to come from these vocalists.

But that was not the sum and total of this band. A real ace in the hole was guitarist Ross Bellenoit. He may be short on stature, but he is ultra-long on skill. Bellenoit ripped off numerous sturdy, steely, meaty guitar leads throughout their too short 50-minute set.

The Sweetback Sisters mixed original with covers such as Bob Wills' Feeling Bad, which closed the evening, to Jimmy Martin's Don't Cry to Me. They took the varied songs and made them sound their own... These guys were keepers."

Ok, without further ado, here are some videos. I hope we see you down the road sometime soon (like in VA, WV, TN, or NC in the next two weeks!).

xoxo Emily

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

An ode to yodeling

A little "how to" to start us out...

Our friend Nora Jane rocks it on a song that she wrote:

Sing it, Hank:

Und...das beste Jodler in der Welt:

They do it over in the country of Georgia (and how!):

Finally, the Dezurik Sisters are simply the best harmony yodelers I have ever heard:

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Watermelon Wednesday

Did you know that today was Watermelon Wednesday? Well in the sweet town of Whately, MA on any given Wednesday in the summer time you'll find a lil chapel down a windy road, with some killer music along with, you guessed it, watermelons.

Today was a lovely evening for the Sweetback crew complete we nummy treats, and a warm and welcoming audience. It was the first of two bills we'll be sharing with the killer quintet Joy Kills Sorrow. JKS, as they're called if you're 'in the know, are one of the newest bands of the newgrass movement. Each player is incredible in their own right, but we aren't ashamed to play favorites, so we'd say we like the bass player best.

Check em out sometime. Or even better come to see us co-bill at Club Passim tomorrow in Cambridge, MA.

Deal? Deal.
See you tomorrow.


p.s. Did you know in Japan they have square watermelons? They're entirely natural, just formed in cases while they're still growing to "save space in the fridge." Hmmm I don't trust em.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Undie performs a special show

Guitar interlude: Ross
Maniacal laughter: Ross and Emmy
Unwitting thespian: Un Deux Trois

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


New York City's full of treats;
all the things I love to eat.
Roast-pork buns, and dumpling soup,
spinach pie and falafel, too.