Touring the States & Europe – Summer 2014 Style!

This has been a summer for the record books!  I started it out playing drums for the Paul Collins Beat   We did a 5 week 10,000 mile tour over 24 states.  Felt good to be out playing such great songs with a solid group of guys.  The highlights for me were Seattle, Portland, Austin, and NYC.  I will be joining the Beat on tour again Sept. 23rd- Nov 5th.  We will be playing, Gonerfest, CMJ and the Fest all on that jaunt.

Immediately after that I had a few days off and then flew with Brett Newski over the pond for 3 1/2 weeks in Europe.  It was my first tour overseas.  It took me almost 20 years of playing in bands to finally make music over there.  We played shows in Switzerland, Poland, Germany and the Netherlands.  We decided to play a few less shows to have time to do a little more sight seeing.  It drove Brett crazy but I very much enjoyed all the extra time.  It was incredible to be able to rent a bike and just ride around for an entire day.  I left my heart in Poland and Amsterdam.  Thanks to my new Polish family for putting us up, showing us all your customs and making it one of the highlights of my life.  Amsterdam may very well be one of the coolest places I’ve ever been to ever.  I love the canals, North Amsterdam, the supreme balance of work/play, the architecture, art, people, nightlife and food.  Among hundreds of other things.

Here are few pictures.  Thanks to everyone that helped, fed, and gave us a place to stay the last few months!

Covered Bridge

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AmsterdamA-damBad Benthiem FestBerlin WallBrett Blue BallsJ&J SionSwisslandZurich Church

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SXSW + Touring & Recording With Josh Berwanger

Thank you to everyone who came out to our first SXSW day party at Freedmen’s BBQ a couple weeks ago!  Besides rain holding the schedule back a few minutes and us losing power for 10 minutes, our party was a complete and total success!  We hope to do one next year again.  A big thank you to the bands that traveled all the way down there and took the time to play our stage!  Without you none of this would be possible.  SX this year was full of fun and schmooze.  Just the way we like it.  One huge bonus was that Freedmen’s has the best ribs Josh Berwanger and I have ever had!

Speaking of Josh Berwanger, after my trip to Austin I immediately drove down to Kansas City and did a Midwest tour with him and his band on drums.  Hanging with Josh is inspiring because he works so hard and he’s all about having a good time & laughing as much as possible.  We basically spent the whole tour saying Arnold quotes each other.  The shows were all fun and I met a lot of new friends, as well as hanging with some old ones.  After the tour ended in St. Louis we drove straight to Kansas City and recorded a couple new songs at Element Recording Studios with Joel.  Who’s a super great guy and part owner of my favorite drum company C&C Drums.  Not sure yet what will happen with the 2 songs but I hope they see the light of day soon.  Becky and I drove back together and stopped by the James Family Farm in Kearney, MO which was super bad ass.  Also, stopped in at the Iowa 80 Truckstop.  I’m very blessed with such a cool job and all the cool people I have in my life.  Cheers buddies.Ben & Jon GLR SXBrett MKE HOMETwo Cow Shang Ri LaDeer Tick SXSW 2014THSRadio PerformanceMoose Knuckle HangMoose Knuckle 2SONY DSCJosh StudioJosh Studio Brett & Naked CowboyJon, Josh, Tyler ColumbusFreedmens FlagsJar Jar on DrumzJar Jar Empty BottleHi, How Are You?

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Jude Law and the Holidays Abroad.

Andrew and I from GLR just got back from spending the Holidays in London and Paris!  Let’s face it, sometimes work is just nuts and you need to get away from the grind of it all!  It was nice to get away and clear our heads.  French food and cabaret shows were just what the doctor ordered.  The weather was right around 50 degrees with a little rain.  So it was damn hard to come back home to frozen Wisconsin.  Especially lately with the temps being about -50 below.  I would have to say one of the highlights of the our trip was going to Pere Lachaise which is the cemetery where Jim Morrison and Chopin are buried.  Very epic and beautiful there.  I can’t wait to someday go back!

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CMJ Festival Pictures

Howdy everyone out there in Good Land land!  A lot going on here lately so I’ll keep it short and sweet.  I just got back from our Good Land extravaganza in NYC at CMJ and it couldn’t have been more fun.  Midnight Reruns, Archie Powell & The Exports, and the Josh Berwanger Band played to great crowds and sounded fantastic!  Here’s some pics to prove I was there:

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Summer’s up and split.

Hope everyone’s summer was fun and relaxing!  It’s hard to believe that it’s coming to an end and we are headed to the colder months already.  September in recent memory has been pretty warm so at least we have that going for us mid-westerners.  I’m trying to listen to a lot of happier and sun shiny music lately to emotionally prepare my self for what’s coming.  Just to put it out there to remember for later here are some summer highlights to share with you in no particular order:

-getting to go on a sailing trip with my friend Sarah

-going boating with Jeff & Joanne in Columbus, OH

-staying at Delight’s horse farm in Lexington, KY

-playing 3 on 3 basketball in Kansas at Josh’s

-getting to hit lots of record stores all over the U.S.

-putting on and playing the 1st Annual Shades Shindig at Hart Park

-recording at Ardent Studios in Memphis

-going to NY and playing shows with the Old 97′s

-going to the Woodstock Cemetery to pay respect to Levon Helm and Rick Danko

-going to Big Pink in Saugerties, NY

-spending time with Ruthie

-Miller Park to Paul McCartney with my dad

-playing Mile Of Music with Jonny Fritz (thanks Cory!)

-going back to Eudora, KS to see the Black Lodge and taking the gravel roads through the corn fields to Lawrence, KS

-Becoming closer friends with Carter Hulsey

-spending time with Doby & Kara at their lake house

-eating gobs of insane BBQ down south

-going to Stax Museum in Memphis

-Harley Fest (seeing Dave Grohl play cover songs, Alejandro blowing my mind)

-playing drums with Pete Donnelly

-headlining Brady St. Fest 2013

-getting my first protools rig for recording (learning slowly)

-pool party at Andrew’s

That’s about it for now.  Be sure to keep checking back for tour dates because our artists are about to be getting busy.  Many new releases coming soon!

WFSY

 

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So Here It Is…A Groove Slightly Transformed

 

It finally feels like summer decided to show up in the Good Land.  Probably because it’s been super hot for days in a row now.  Yesterday, a couple of us took a dip in Andrew’s pool, cooked some brats, and shot some guns.  Basically had some good clean All-American fun!  Tonight I’m going with my father to see Paul McCartney at Miller Park!  We saw him together about 10 years ago and had a great time so I think we’re in for a hell of a night!

We have been extremely busy lately here at Good Land.  We’re working on three different titles that should be coming out soon.  People have been really receptive to The Figgs Box Set we released a couple weeks ago and we couldn’t be happier about it.  If you’re interested in one please act fast because a third of them have already sold.

A couple weeks ago The Shades went to New York to do a string of shows and they went very well for us!  Highlights for me playing wise were the Brooklyn Bowl show with the Old 97′s and getting to play with my favorite guitar player Chip Roberts in Hudson, NY.  But the most mind blowing thing of the trip out east was going to the Woodstock Cemetery to pay honor and respect to Levon Helm and Rick Danko.  Such a beautiful place up there in the Catskills.  No wonder they all moved and found peace there.  Speaking of, we got to also roll by the Big Pink House which was breath taking to be there.  I’ll never forget that.  Safe to say I was in deep throws of passion.  That about enough emotion I can take for one blog so I’ll leave you guys.  Thanks to everyone for making The First Annual Shades Shindig a great success by coming out!  The Benjamin’s reunited for the first time in a long while and it was super fun!

Peace and love,

Jonny

 

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My Stream Of Conciousness Thoughts On Life

A lot has happened since I’ve rapped at you all. I turned 34 years old, had my one-year sober-versary, took a trip down south with The Shades, my best buddy moved to NYC, and I got a brand new drum set for the first time since the 1900′s (custom C&C kit!)!  

Lately I’ve really been missing the days and memories from my past. The past is responsible for who you are now and you will never see those days again.  My hair keeps getting more blonde (grey) and I miss the way the world used to be when I was a kid. Those were simpler times. Sorry to get deep on everyone here but I can’t help it. I went to my Dad’s house recently to say check in with him and dig in his basement for old pictures and cassettes. I unearthed a ton of shit, for better or for worse. It’s nice that I found all of that stuff because it took me back and got me thinking. I’m almost regretting certain things I’ve done thinking back on everything. It’s a hard hand to be dealt but I have to try to live every day to the fullest while being a good man and cherish every moment because life is very short. 

I’ve been trying to beef up my record collection over the years and it really is therapeutic for me to just go to a store and dig around. When I’m older I’ll be surrounded by a bunch of music and junk but it’ll be all the things I want to be surrounded by. Not in a hoarder-type fashion, but in a tidy museum timeline sorta way. Music is one of the most important things to me. It makes me happy to have this record label with a few friends all working towards a common goal and spreading music to you fine folks. It’s something I’d always wanted to try.  Also, I’m glad I came around to NYC, it’s one of the best cities I’ve ever been too.

 

Being a musician is a pain in the ass is what I’ve learned. You have to make so many sacrifices and there is little payoff in the end. In Nashville, we all got to see the Levon Helm documentary and it got me thinking about my life. I’m glad I started taking better care of myself because there’s no health insurance at my level. I’ve been slowing down my thinking lately and trying to concentrate when my dog is on my lap looking at me with loving eyes because she won’t be around for ever. I’ve never really thought of myself turning into an old man until recently. Thank you to everyone that has helped me along in my life the last year and helping me get healthy. There’s an old man waiting to give you a hug in 40 years and talk about life and love. Thanks for listening.

Jonny Phillip
June 6, 2013

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Chooglin’, hitting the road again, and Record Store Day 2013!

Good Evening everybody,

It finally feels like spring/summer here in the good land!  It almost hit 80 degrees outside.  The weather outside is weather.  I hope everyone out there is fortunate enough to have some warmer temperatures.  A lot has been going on over the last month.  Record Store Day happened and it was a b-l-a-s-t.  I got up at 6:45am and stood in line for almost an hour in the cold and still didn’t get two of the 8 records I wanted.  It’s really turned into a shit show over the last couple years.  It seems like a bunch of assholes snatch everything up real quick like and then try to ebay them.  Which is total horse shit.  I don’t want to stand in line to get records to turn a profit on, I wanna fucking get them home and listen to them!  What the record companies should do is press more copies of every release and do a online pre-order kind of deal.  But who am I to say anything really?  Just some dorky record collector guy.

I’m gearing up to leave for tour in a couple days.  I’m very excited to hang with Jacob and co. while seeing some of the south I have never really got the chance to soak in yet.  We have our new Keyboard player Dusty coming and also his cousin and my dear friend Scott.  Can’t wait to cause some trouble with the boys.  Which causing trouble for me now a days means drinking a late night milk shake or throwing my apple core out the window while driving.  What’s special on this tour for me is the third date we have Jake from C&C custom drums is bringing my new drum kit!  It’s been years that I’ve been wanting to get a kit made for just me.  So hats off to everyone at C&C for helping me out with a sweet new kit to bring around the country!  That same night I get to hang with my old friend Josh Berwanger that used to sing in the Anniversary.  We are actually putting out his band’s new record:)  We are getting so pumped for everyone to hear what he’s been brewing for the last couple years.  I’ve always been a fan of just about everything he’s done over the years.  He also designed a new shirt for The Shades with Godzilla walking over the Milwaukee skyline.  So radical.  Speaking of tour, go see Archie Powell & the Exports on the last leg of their tour coming to Milwaukee and Madison on May 3rd and 4th.  Hope everyone is getting excited for summer and all our releases we’ve been working on getting to y’all!  Keep chooglin’ long and hard.  That’s what she said.

Peace and love.

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SXSW, Ardent Studios, Classic D. Pepp, Tradin’ Paint, Dave Grohl, & BBQ.

Howdy Y’all!

Just got back from a lovely trip down south and I couldn’t have had a better time!  On the way down to Texas we got to stay with our friend Mike in Oklahoma City and meet his dogs.  Their names are Donut and Reeses.  After that in the Dallas/Fort Worth I got to trade a little paint Roberto.  We got to stop at the Dr. Pepper museum in Waco on the way to Austin and I helped the Shades discover their favorite drink…The Original Recipe. If you haven’t ever been to the D. Pepp museum I highly suggest going.

The next couple days we did a couple of classic show with Frank Turner in San Antonio and Corpus Christi.  Big ups to Frank and his crew for having us on those couple shows!  We got to go see the Gulf Of Mexico and hug the Selena statue.  In San Anton we got to go to the Alamo and pay respect to all the struggle that has happened at that particular spot.

Up next was 5 days of chaos in Austin which was super wild and fun!  Right when we got to the Convention center to check in we ran into Dave Grohl and got to chat a bit which was a moment I’ve been waiting for since I was a kid.  He is super down to earth and an all around cool guy.  After that we got to hop on a last minute show with Milwaukee’s own The Mighty Deer Lick at the Legendary White Swan.  What an honor.  Thanks to Travis, Franke, and Erin for putting all us boys up down there.  We played the Blurt party at The Gingerman and that show was out of control!  Got to meet a Shades super fan from Belgium and I got to run into my good buddy from Australia Nish.  It was amazing catching up with everybody there and getting brisket with MKE’s own Tom Vollman.

Our showcase was at this huge awkward airplane hangar that was super loud and way too big for us.  But all went well.  You just have to roll with the punches at SX all day everyday.

The last night we got to play our friend Jimmy’s bar slash BBQ joint named Freedmans.  It was a magical night filled with Milwaukee friends old and new.  But the kicker was Jacob Dylan, Rami Jaffee and Charlie Sexton coming up to play The Weight and One Headlight with us!!!!  I’ll post more pictures on here when I get the chance.

On the way home we hit up and In n Out Burger in Dallas as well as a Waffle House in Arkansas!  Most def the most awkward and horrible WH experience to date but what can you expect?  We stayed the night close to Memphis because at noon we had a hot date for Jody Stevens of Big Star to show us the famous Ardent Studios!  We got to meet everybody there including John Fry which was super sweet.  Jody showed us the whole studio for almost 2 hours with a few factoids and stories.  He is pretty much the nicest person alive.  The Shades are going to try our hardest to record our next record there.  Then on the way out of town Jody tipped us off to some amazing ribs that got us all the way home safely.  What a solid trip.

 

 

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The Oldies, Recording Drums, and Playing A Washboard.

Howdy interweb land!  Seems like things always come full circle.  Over the last couple years now and maybe more, I’ve been listening to the old pop punk stuff I did in high school.  It’s funny to say but it’s refreshing because it seems like most of the new music out there I don’t like.

Ben and I jammed with Tim Schweiger the other day and it felt great to be playing with Benny after all these years having him on the business side of things.  We are going to play a show with Tim at Linnemans April 20th for the MUFF.  Please come and watch us act like we’re 18 again!

Mike from the All American Rejects stayed with me for a week and we recorded drums for the new Direct Hit album.  It went great and he couldn’t be more of a fun guy to work with.  He got me into all kinds of old punk stuff.  Can’t wait to see him again and hear how the record will turn out.

Also, played my first show with Joseph Huber a couple weekends ago.  It was fun because I love Joe’s songs so much and I tried something I’ve never done before.  Just used a suitcase as a kick drum and a washboard as a snare.  I’m excited to play more shows with him in the future.  We need to find a stand up bass player because Rick’s going back to Alaska to film another season of Gold Rush Alaska!  Be safe up there buddy.

We’ll see ya!

 

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