This is what it means to be indie. You have zero help. You have zero representation.
What you do have is a dream. You have a belief that is so deep that it empowers everything you do. The goal…. is to get other people to dream it too.
In 2017 my younger brother committed murder. My life kinda had gone sideways a decade earlier, but this event… made The Shawshank Redemption resonate in my mind like a time bomb.
Because folks…. “That’s Goddamn right.”
Life is too short. Here’s to life. The memories we make. The visions we see. The dreams we inspire.
So, I wrote a book. It is called Spirits of Jerome. It is for sale at the Jerome Historical Mine Museum & Gift Shop, my own Facebook Store… SOON…. and Amazon. My intention was to write a book inspired by my favorite town in Arizona, write ghost stories, and offer my own spin on Jerome, Arizona’s legends. My wonderful mentor Stephen Ashbrook believed in me enough to write the forward. He thanked me for the opportunity to “write himself into the history of that town” – and that, Amigos, is priceless.
My next venture was going to be a book called Echoes of the Ancients, where I wrote one ghost story inspired by and dedicated to 10 different Indigenous Tribes in Arizona. Their culture is awe inspiring, fascinating, and deeply personal. It has moved me in my life in ways that I cannot describe. I love the People.
But. As I was involved more and more with Ken Lamberton’s Writer’s Workshop at the University of Arizona, I began to realize that the depth of cultural reverence, the absolute dedication to respect over Cultural Appropriation, and a pure spiritual connection to the source material may be beyond my skill – at the moment. However, my blog about music in Arizona, my connections, and my reach was exploding. I had always planned my Speculative Books about Arizona to be a trilogy.
All I did was switch the places of books 2 and 3.
Spirits of Jerome is dedicated to a magical place.
Ghost Songs is dedicated to magical local music.
Echoes of the Ancients is dedicated to the First People of Arizona.
Welcome to the Boneyard.
Ghost Songs is a book of 15 (16 with epilogue) loosely connected short stories. Each was inspired by a moment of inspiration while listening to a song of a beloved Arizona artist. I basically had a thought while listening, and said to myself… “Yeah, but Twilight Zone, X Files.” And Ghost Songs was born!
The Eleventh Hour
Paper Foxes are dance-able guitar riffs, primitive, disco-esque bass lines, digital keys, and vocal deliveries that would make David Byrne proud. Formed in 2014, the band pulls from a well of new-wave, 70s disco, and indie pop. Fans of Interpol, Joy Division, and Bloc Party will have a field day with Paper Foxes at www.paperfoxesband.com
The Drowned Banshee
Jane ‘n the Jungle is an alternative rock band from Phoenix, Arizona. They create a unique sound mixing 90s alternative and modern rock. Jane ‘n the Jungle released a full length record entitled Concrete Jungle in the summer of 2019. Check them out at www.janenthejungle.com
Crimes of the Dead
Pinnacles of the Tempe, Arizona music scene of legend, and hailed as one of the most exciting live acts still on the road today, Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers are musical beacons of the Southwest fueled by witty and insightful lyrics, crunching guitar riffs, a dynamic rhythm section and tequila. Dubbed the “Springsteen of the Southwest” by the Asury Park Press, Roger Clyne and his guitar have toured around the world over his 20 year career. Be a Peacemaker and follow the band at www.rogerclyneandthepeacemakers.com
The Rock Pig of Apache Lake
Ghetto Cowgirl is a powerhouse Tempe, Arizona band comprised of members of Satellite, Dead Hot Workshop, Pistoleros, all fronted by the wild-man antics of future Tempe Town Councilman (Marc Norman 2020). A drop down and dirty old school alternative rock band with solid licks, Ghetto Cowgirl provides their music at no charge at www.reverbnation.com/ghettocowgirl !
The Woodworks, formed in 2011, are based out of Phoenix, Arizona. Their music is continually evolving. It’s not rock, but it rocks! It’s not folk, but doing a jig feels natural! It’s not blues, but we occasionally pour our souls into repeated twelve-bar phrases! It’s not alternative, but we’ll drink a PBR with you! Come check them out at www.thewoodworksaz.com
Ouija with Nietzche
Fairy Bones is the drama you’re missing in your life. Blending pop sensibilities with the reckless abandon of soap operas, this ‘alt/rock/pop’ quartet hailing from Phoenix, Arizona has been asking audiences everywhere to not notice the strikingly scary similarities between their personal lives and Fleetwood Mac. With a new album expected in the fall of 2019, pay attention to Fairy Bones at www.fairybones.com
180 Gram Blue Vinyl
Since forming in 2015, Wyves has developed a memorable sound and unmistakable edge that you will gravitate towards. Filtering inspirations from The Rolling Stones, Prince, Thin Lizzy, and more; the Arizona-based band manages to make you feel nostalgic for all the great rock bands while having fresh, distinct sound a the same time. Follow their antics at www.ilovemywyves.com
Faces in Mirrors
Banana Gun’s sound is described as bluesy, jammy, eclectic, and jazzy. But, we all know that “jazzy” is a catch-all musical term too many music critics use when they don’t know how to describe a band that incorporates so many influences. Banana Gun actually has never approached writing or playing music with the intent of fitting into a comfy description. Banana Gun is one of those bands that lay everything on the line for each other. Writing, recording, or playing live, they do it for each other and hopefully you’re lucky enough to be there to see it. Check it at www.bananagunband.com
Ghosts of the Borderlands
When Ivan Denis released his first EP Slowburn, I interviewed him and in that interview I defined his sound as authentic Americana, and I defined Americana as the triangular field that would be created between Johnny Cash, James Taylor, and Bob Dylan. If you are in that field…. you are Americana. Perhaps it isn’t a perfect definition, but it holds up. Check out Ivan Denis at www.ivandenis.com
The House of Dead Children
Emerging from Phoenix, New Chums are hot off their second EP See it for Myself, and preparing another from Mesa, Arizona based music producer Flying Blanket Records. With a bright, sunny California vibe that has been liked to The Strokes, Neon Trees, and Jimmy Eat World, expect the Chums to keep making waves well into the future. Follow them at www.facebook.com/newchumsband
The Astrological Tomb
Harper and the Moths are hot of their second album release this last July 2019, and they are definitely a band you need to be paying attention to. Harper and the Moths is a dance-pop band from Phoenix, Arizona. A group akin to bands like The Killers, Neon Trees, Duran Duran and New Order, the band produces funky pop and rock with a new wave twist that scratches the itch for another time. Check em out at www.facebook.com/harperandthemoths
The Old Gods & the New
The boys over at Sunset Voodoo really just don’t beat around the bush. They lay down great vibes, and allow you to deal with them. So, in their no frills style… this is how they describe themselves. Bands we sound like: Something like Seduction, Bob Rabbit, Haze the Saxy Rapper, Barefoot, PAO, Panic Baby, Katastro, Japhy’s Descent, Wyves, Fayuca, Mergence, Future Loves Past Red Hot Chili Peppers, Radiohead and Incubus, just to name a few. What we are into: jamming, writing, traveling, skating, surfing, beer, women, whiskey, coffee, an chorizo burritos. Nuff Said. Follow Sunset Voodoo at www.facebook.com/soundofthewaves
In July of 2019, Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers, Dead Hot Workshop, and Pistoleros were all inducted into the Arizona Arts and Entertainment Hall and Fame. In a 1999 Phoenix New Times article, Roger Clyne said, “Music people in this city in general get as excited about what Brent Babb does as people did about what Dylan was doing in the 60s.” Seriously, you are late to the bandwagon… but you best jump on it. www.facebook.com/deadhotworkshop
Bear Ghost is a rock band from Phoenix, Arizona that fuses intricate musicianship, melodies and song structure to deliver a one of a kind sound, but one might compare them to a fantastic reincarnation of Oingo Boingo. With the release of their first full length album, Blasterpiece, attaining Phoenix New Times Album of the Year in 2016. Be sure to keep up with what’s new with the phantasmal grizzlies at www.bearghost.com
Bo’oches’an: the Hacienda Boogeyman
The Black Moods play raw, amplified rock & roll. Born in the Arizona desert and reared on stages across North America, the band delivers a modern update of a timeless sound, breathing fresh life into a familiar mix of electric guitars, anthemic hooks, and percussive stomp. Their last two singles, Bella Donna and Bad News have charted on the Billboard Rock charts in the US. The Black Moods are not looking to reinvent the wheel, instead, they’re piling into a vehicle that’s existed for decades, souping up the engine to suit the contemporary needs, and steering those wheels toward their own rock n roll horizon. Follow that journey at www.theblackmoods.com
Epilogue: Guardian Angel
Pistoleros are a Tempe, Arizona staple. Dead Hot Workshop. Gin Blossoms. Roger Clyne. Pistoleros. Legends. Educate yourself at
Folks, prepare to have your minds blown.
I really can not wait to share this with you. By the way…. I am giving away 20 BOOKS AT THIS THING…. and a bunch of amazing music. 10 BUCKS.
You best get on it.
Keep the Greasy Side Down Amigos