kalexander's blog

First Listen: Feufollet’s "Red Light"

By David ThierSouthern SoundsMarch 3, 2015

Feufollet is Cajun French for the mysterious flickering lights that you can see dancing over the Louisiana swamps on the right night — “crazy fire.” Appropriate, since there’s something unknowable about the band: an indie rock Cajun group, with generations of inherited talent swirling around its young members. They’ve been together since founding members Chris Stafford and Chris Segura were just 12 years old, and in that time they’ve gone from being those kids that play the dance hall classics to something entirely their own—and they’ve even been nominated for a Grammy.

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Gravy Podcast: The History of Derby Pie

By Jed PortmanSouthern SoundsFebruary 26, 2015

Ever tried Derby pie? To many Southerners the recipe for the gooey, bourbon-soaked dessert practically belongs to everyone. Alan Rupp would disagree. His grandparents Walter and Leaudra Kern created the recipe about sixty-five years ago, for the dessert menu at the Melrose Inn in Prospect, Kentucky. “If you wanted to get a hold of Derby Pie, you called Walter Kern’s name in the old phone directory,” he says.

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First Listen: Houndmouth’s “Otis”

By The EditorsSouthern SoundsFebruary 19, 2015

This is a busy week for the members of the Louisville, Kentucky–based band Houndmouth. The quartet kicks off their North American tour on the other side of the Ohio River with a show in Champaign, Illinois, tonight, before swinging South next month, hitting several prominent festivals including Texas's SXSW, Alabama’s Hangout, and Tennessee's Bonnaroo before wrapping up back in Kentucky at the Forecastle Festival in July. (Good thing they're making the rounds since their hometown record-release show at Louisville’s Brown Theatre on March 26 is already sold out.)

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Gravy Podcast: The Jemima Code

By Jed PortmanGood EatsJanuary 29, 2015

After Toni Tipton-Martin took a job writing about food and cookbooks at the Los Angeles Times, she realized that none of the books in her office were written by black cooks. Then, a chance encounter with a decades-old volume introduced her to a whole genre of little-known recipe books that bring to life generations of women dismissed in later histories as the help. “In the late eighteenth century, you’re able to see that they possessed a technical and organizational, managerial-type skill set that no one attributes to slaves,” she says.

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First Listen: Andrew Combs' "Nothing to Lose"

By The EditorsSouthern SoundsJanuary 20, 2015

Nashville, Tennessee, has long been home to talented singers and songwriters, so naturally musician Andrew Combs fits right in. The Texas native's sophomore album All These Dreams will be released March 3, but you can have a listen to the track “Nothing to Lose” now exclusively here. 

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First Listen: Blackberry Smoke's "Too High"

By The EditorsSouthern SoundsJanuary 13, 2015

Although the Allman Brothers Band played their last live show back in October, another hardworking band from Georgia continues to keep the Rambin'-Man traditions of Southern rock alive. Atlanta's Blackberry Smoke have played more than 250 shows a year since their inception back in 2000 cultivating a fiercely loyal fanbase along the way, including fellow musicians George Jones—who guested on the band's second album—Zac Brown, and Gregg Allman himself. The quintet's fourth studio album, Holding All the Roses comes out February 10, but you can hear the song "Too High"exclusively on G&G now. 

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First Listen: JJ Grey & Mofro’s "Every Minute"

By The EditorsSouthern SoundsJanuary 12, 2015

With roots in Southern rock, blues, funk, and soul, the music of Jacksonville, Florida–based JJ Grey and Mofro defies categorization. The band's ninth album, Ol’ Glory, is out in February, but you can have an exclusive first listen of the track "Every Minute" now. Like most of the set, this song is an upbeat anthem—which is easy to understand considering the inspiration for this song came to Grey on a trip to Jamaica. “I had an epiphany," Grey says, "I was eating my favorite breakfast—ackee and salt fish—and was real warm but the sea breeze had just started out of the east. There was music playing somewhere in the distance and all at once I realized that I was the luckiest person alive (no matter how many times I might have tried to convince myself otherwise). Then I started humming this tune." 

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Eudora Welty's Christmas Eggnog

By Emily WallaceGood EatsDecember 19, 2014

“I haven’t given a thought to Christmas,” Eudora Welty wrote to her agent Diarmuid Russell in 1947, “except where to get a little whiskey for the eggnog. Better stir the brain.” Nevermind a casserole: Welty’s signature offering was a strong pitcher of nog. “We could always depend on that,” says her niece, Mary Alice White. “Eudora always brought it.”

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Inside the Tracker’s Pack

By CJ LotzBelow the LineDecember 19, 2014

These days, Dwight McCarter, "The Tracker” we featured in our December/January 2015 issue, enjoys hiking the Great Smoky Mountains National Park for pleasure. He covers between four and twenty-six miles each week in his trusty Chippewa boots.

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Southern Classic: Daube Glacé

By Jed PortmanGood EatsDecember 18, 2014

While country ham and salami are hardly foreign to New Orleans these days, they were rarities in the along the Gulf Coast two centuries ago. “We can’t hang meats outside here. They rot,” says Isaac Toups, who runs the kitchen at Toups’ Meatery. In the years before the advent of refrigeration, locals had to find other ways to keep the pantry stocked.

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