I love how Jack White does it all, in addition to the PBS American Epic Series, he owns Third Man Records and Third Man Books. Talk about the ability to publish and reach an audience.
I welcome the opportunity to sit down with Jack White and share a cup of coffee. I’d love nothing more than the opportunity to thank him in person for all he does to educate, entertain and preserve music heritage. I appreciate all you invent and share with the world, Jack.
On November 7th, you can join Suzy Lee as she goes to school with her books and pens, looks for bugs, shows and tells and finds a friend in the “We’re Going To Be Friends” children’s picture book from Third Man Books! Pre-order the Jack White-penned book with illustrations by Elinor Blake now: http://smarturl.it/WGTBFbook
I have been waiting for this Only on PBS music series to be viewable for four years. The production has a magic appeal as a combination of music history, Americana, and the significance of the lacquered phonograph record.
It was fortuitous for the series to begin with the hills of Appalachia and the Carter Family. They are the roots of country music. I love the risks they took to seek out a long distance audition being held at the famed Bristol Sessions with Ralph Peer.
Ralph Peer was an electrical engineer, responsible for the invention of the modern recording equipment. It was said of him, “He must have been a visionary”, due to the profound impact he had on finding talented artists and recording them.
I was moved to see a rare collaboration in color video with Sara and Maybelle Carter perform with Johnny Cash on The Johnny Cash Show, Nov. 18, 1970.
American Epic is beautiful in its curation. The videos are painstakingly articulated as are the graphics and the b&w/color stills.
The episode shifts to the home of the blues, Memphis, Tennessee. The focus here is the seminal influence of the Memphis Jug Band. Another recording find of Ralph Peer
We learn about Will Shade a founding member of the Memphis Jug Band. The jug creates an interesting context on the harmony and backdrop of their music.
We get to see and hear the original 78rpm records”Newport News Blues”, “On The Road Again (1928)”, “Stealin, Stealin”, “Cocaine Habit Blues (1930)”
It was smart to see American Epic incorporate two blues historians, Taj Mahal and Charlie Musselwhite. They each provide us with a firm foundation of the blues curated with all the love in their heart. I was fortunate to write a term paper on Taj Mahal as a roots/blues musician when I minored in music in college.
You will want to see the segment where Charlie Musslewhite in the Memphis Police building plays the guitar and sings the heartfelt song Will Shade taught him, “I’ll Get A Break Someday”.
Threaded throughout the episode is producer/musician/pressing plant owner Jack White our modern day preservationist of rare music and phonograph records. He performs in the studio with Nas and Lillie Mae on violin and other musicians.
Jack White’s record company, Third Man Records, is selling the American Epic artists reissues on their Web site. There are lots of great roots musicians to get to know better and hopefully add to your vinyl music collection.
Jack White, T. Bone Burnett, and Robert Redford have teamed up to executive produce American Epic, a historical music project exploring the pivotal recording journeys of the early twentieth century, which for the first time captured the breadth of American music and made it available to the world. It was, in a very real way, the first time America truly heard herself.
The companion book to the groundbreaking PBS and BBC documentary series celebrating the pioneers and artists of American roots music—blues, gospel, folk, Cajun, Appalachian, Hawaiian, Native American—without which there would be no jazz, rock, country R&B, or hip hop today.
I was very moved by Jack White’s performance last night. My interpretation of his raw emotions was that he was thinking about Meg. An honest expression of the solo acoustic medley of White Stripes hits “Love Is the Truth” and “You’ve Got Her in Your Pocket”.
The song was originally written for The White Stripes album, Get Behind Me Satan, but wasn’t finished until this year. According to a press release, “The track is the first new, worldwide commercially released White Stripes song since 2008.”
Acoustic Recordings also comes with liner notes by noted music journalist, Greil Marcus. The track list is in chronological order.
I tip my hat once more to Jack White’s innovative business sense as he forges and casts the Third Man Books publishing imprint. His creative sense builds a fresh dimensional interpretation as we learn to respect and interact with printed matter.
Language LessonsVolume 1 is a321 page hardbound book co-edited by Third Man’s Ben Swank and Chet Weise, a poet, musician and founder of the Nashville literary event, Poetry Sucks. The book is packed with new pieces from more than 20 acclaimed authors including Pulitzer Prize nominee in fiction Dale Ray Phillips; C.D. Wright, a National Book Award Finalist and National Book Critics Circle winner in poetry; and Adrian Matejka, a National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize finalist in poetry. Punk godfathers Richard Hell and Tav Falco also contributed non-fiction pieces.
As for the music portion of the set, the two vinyl LPs boast previously unheard material ranging from blues and pop to jazz and psychedelic-punk, courtesy of an eclectic group of artists like William Tyler, Destruction Unit, Ken Vandermark and Paul “Wine” Jones.
Each Language Lessons set will also include five frameable posters combining poems by Weise, Wright, Frank Stanford, Brian Barker and Jake Adam York with original art by former Big Boys guitarist Tim Kerr, former Hate comics illustrator Jim Blanchard, folk artist Butch Anthony and more.
Third Man Books will preview Language Lessons, Volume 1 on Saturday, July 26th during the Newport Folk Festival, where Jack White is also a headliner. The event will feature readings from Weise and other contributors Zachary Schomburg, Joshua Marie Wilkinson, Janaka Stucky, Sampson Starkweather, Paige Taggart and Kendra Decolo.
Jack White sets a record for vinyl sales as his album, Lazaretto makes its debut on top of this week’s Billboard albums chart.
Of the 138,000 copies of Lazaretto that White sold, 40,000 were in the vinyl format. According to Billboard, that’s the best sales week for a vinyl album since Billboard began using SoundScan to track sales in 1991.
Lazaretto is the #1 album in the US, Canada and Denmark!