There are some things you might not know about Matthew.
One is that he hates vegetation:
Another is that he can rock the crane kick way better than Daniel-san ever did (in full raingear!):
Another is that he wears ridiculous geriatric sunglasses even when he’s inside talking on the phone.
There is also the fact that even though he is a master of the crane kick, he is often bested by opponents 1/10th his size:
Finally, there is the fact that in spite of being an earnest boy from the Midwest, he can play a pretty mean blues harp (while bouncing a baby!) (in a library!):
Matthew first picked up the harmonica as a young buck a few years out of college. Our dear friend Gina Coleman asked Matthew up on stage to play with her band, Misty Blues, at her wedding. She actually even went out and purchased a harp in the right key for him. And he was hooked. From that day on, I had to suffer many long hours of painful and repetitive trills and bends. Actually, I think Iggy suffered the most.
She really hates the harmonica.
Over the years, Gina has graciously invited Matthew to play on various Misty Blues albums, in spite of his greenness and his general tendency to go into paroxysms of self-loathing and anxiety when faced with the thought of his playing being recorded for posterity. Gina’s general attitude about these sorts of things is, “Get over it, Nancy.” (If Gina had been faced with the underbrush in the photo above, for instance, she would have just mowed that shit down, no questions asked.) Gina is an amazing, talented, beautiful and ballsy force.
And the girl’s got PIPES.
And so we found ourselves in Massachusetts a few months ago – Matthew had once again been invited to sit in on a recording. And in spite of his nervous stomach and the beads of sweat on his brow, he couldn’t say no, because no one says no to Gina.
No one says no, not even Charles Neville.
Yes, that Charles Neville! The Charles Neville of the Grammy-winning Neville Brothers! Seriously!
So there’s another thing you probably didn’t know about Matthew. He’s on an album with Charles Neville. And the album is now out. It’s called “Between the Stacks” (it was recorded in a local library. Apparently, books are not only good for a hobbling-along-home-based “business”, they also make for good acoustics.)
It features all original songs by the band, and Gina’s bombshell voice is not to be missed. I am partial to Lullaby, a softly rolling, well, lullaby. A kind of love song to life. It’s got a real hook. I also dig Primal, a funky tribal chant song (that’s a lot of words I strung together because I don’t really know how to write about music) where Gina lets her growly low voice out (nice solos by all band members, too). Apparently Chain Saw Mama is making the rounds in Latin America, where Misty Blues is attracting a pretty big fan base through Sirius (such a big fan base, in fact, that Misty’s recorded a Spanish version of both Lullaby and Primal – coincidence. I must have something in common with the average Latin American blues fan…). Give Leave Me Alone a listen. It doesn’t get much better than “absence makes the heart grow fonder, that can be overblown – but how can I miss you if you never leave me alone?”
So, have a listen. You can hear the whole playlist HERE at Reverbnation, or listen to a sampling of songs below.
If you like what you hear, please support this fantastic group of musicians and download Between the Stacks HERE or buy the CD direct from the band HERE (you can also find older albums there that feature covers of classics like Amazing Grace, My Man and I, and one of my favorites, Hot Nuts).
Because if you don’t, I’m going to send Gina after you (did I mention that Gina is an ex-rugby player and coach whose team got the Guinness world record for longest game of rugby ever played?)
Yeah. Watch out. Go get Misty.