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Matt Hillyer "This Ain't The First Time"

There’s been something in the water this week, with heartfelt songs and mellifluous voices delivering them here at Music Fog. I am road tripping for the launch of Hill Country Live in DC and NY.  HC Live is the music venue and perfomance series at the Hill Country Barbecue Markets.   In DC on Thursday, I felt immediately at home walking into the Texas feeling establishment. And I dare say, it would have been my home away from home if it had been opened when I was living in DC. Great food, great vibe, and great music. Heaven.

What is it about honky-tonks that so touches me? It has been a lifelong pursuit, suffice it to say. Today’s song is from Eleven Hundred Springs’ principal, Matt Hillyer.  His music is right at home, as am I, in the dark bar with an icy libation parked in front, considering the rivulets running down the Mason Jar.  Eleven Hundred Springs just recently graced us with a new album Eight The Hard Way.  Get to know these guys, they run real, and after all, isn’t that what it’s all about? “This Ain’t The First Time” is on the latest album, but today we bring you a solo version from the Music Fog Marathon at Threadgill’s during SXSW in March. Here is Matt Hillyer, whose voice rings rich with the ghosts of the great frontier. Yes, Country AND Western. My two favorites!

-- Jessie Scott

This Ain't The First Time - Eight The Hard Way


Slaid Cleaves "Temporary"

It's so bizarre return to a place where you used to live, a place that was so familiar you didn't really didn’t see it anymore.  The DC Metro is a beautiful construction, with an efficiency not found in many cities.  I took a ride today at rush hour, with an international array of folks.  One lady had a NASA bag, the kind that signified she really worked there. A couple of policy wonks had reams of documents under their arm.  Asians, Indians, Africans (like from Ethiopia), and African Americans, Spanish and Whites; people of every description speaking other languages, as well as English, with the cadence of their home far away.

It was great being back, seeing all this again, as I have moved on and left DC behind.  There are eras in our lives, some geographically significant (for those of us who keep moving!)  For others the years play tricks on us, people come and go, jobs change, and eras come to be marked as they morph. We are all along for the ride. Wear it well, embrace the days. As Slaid Cleaves reminds us, they are all “Temporary.”

We recorded Slaid at the Cherokee Creek Music Festival last month outside of Llano, Texas. I can’t get enough of his music, it nails life. This song comes from the dourly titled CD, Everything You Love Will Be Taken Away. Slaid not only writes songs with elegant simplicity, the prose for his blog is really special too,  clean and informative. Slaid is slated to appear in the documentary Troubadour Blues set for release this summer, along with Peter Case, Mary Gauthier, Chris Smither, Dave Alvin, Amy Speace, Garrison Starr, Mark Erelli, Gurf Morlix, Tracy Grammer, Sam Baker, Anne McCue, Troy Campbell, Karl Mullen, Jeff Talmadge, Billy Matheny, RB Morris and Eve Goodman. Here is the Kickstarter page about it, and the good news is they have made their goal. And it is always good news when we can bring you some Slaid Cleaves. Here is “Temporary.”

-- Jessie Scott

Temporary - Everything You Love Will Be Taken Away...