Live Music

Members of this Minneapolis-based old-time string band, made up of musicians from around the Upper Midwest, joined us in the studio on April 15, 2016. The group performs regularly at square dances, including those held by Duluth's Tamarack Dance Association. They were one of the acts performing at the annual Cabin Fever Festival in Duluth, which showcases bluegrass and old-time music.

Listen to our special edition of Live from Studio A- the first-ever on KUMD's the Basement- from March 31, 2016 with these local punk rockers. Their debut EP, Model Homes, hit the top of the Basement charts; Basement Music Director Quentin Stille sat down with the band to find out about how sandwiches, house sitting, and TV's Arrested Development fit into their music and they performed live for us.

The son of the late, renowned jazz drummer Stu Martin, Zeke, began his own on-stage drumming career at the age of 12. Born in Belgium and raised in Paris, he moved to the United States in the mid-'90s and has played with various projects that encompass Jazz, Funk, R & B, and Reggae. 

In 2000 he founded Zeke Martin and the Oracle; the group has released five albums including 2015's Say What. They perform the same night at Beaner's Central and the following night at Sir Benedict's Tavern in Duluth.

This Minneapolis trio joined us on February 26, 2016, a week before heading into the studio to work on a new album. Christine Dean chatted with guitarist Lee Henke, banjo player Ryan Acker, and bassist Vinnie Donatelle about how their bluegrass-influenced sound and songwriting has evolved since they last stopped by. The band also talked about their recent decision to quit their jobs, buy a van, and pursue music full time, and about their first visit to the Folk Alliance Conference. They performed a new tune, "Two Lines," the song "Iron & Ore" from their 2015 self-titled release, and "Lead Me Home"' from 2014's Uprooted.


When Duluth musician Gaelynn Lea joined us in Studio A on February 25, 2016, little did any of us know that the very next day she'd get the news that she'd won NPR's Tiny Desk contest. 

After 20 years of playing the violin and releasing albums with projects including Murder of Crows (with Al Sparhawk of Low), Snöbarn, and The Getarounds, Lea released her first solo album in November. All the Roads that Lead us Home features many of Lea's favorite fiddle standards re-worked with the help of a looping pedal into layered, atmospheric sonic pieces. She spoke with Christine Dean about her songwriting,  her recent decision to be more vocal on behalf of people with disabilities, and her plans to try touring for the first time.

"Blues music offers me a different kind of freedom that I'd never felt before," says Bridget Ideker in this interview from February 19, 2016. 

With a background in church singing and theater, Ideker had never considered fronting a band before encountering longtime Duluth musicians Vincent "Cadillac" Hladilek and Patrick McKinnon at a poetry open mic in 2014. Cadillac, who'd been performing his own blues compositions, jumped at the chance to focus on guitar and let the charismatic vocalist interpret his songs. The four-piece, which also includes drummer Nick Petoletti, bookended their session with two Cadillac originals, "Baby Blue" and "Right Through the Night," with a cover of "Big Boss Man" in between.


This longtime Duluth musician, known for his work in the Brushstrokes, Three Song Sunday, and other projects, released his first solo album in 2015. 

  He's featured on the latest Beaner's Central One Week Live CD and joined us in the studio on February 18, 2016 to preview his set for the CD release shows.

This veteran Twin Cities singer/songwriter had recently released his 13th album, a melodic, jangly folk-rock affair simply titled Dan.

He stopped by our studio on February 8, 2015 on his way to a performance at Papa Charlie's in Lutsen the same evening.


It's not surprising that a duo that's named itself after a railroad that used to connect St. Paul to Duluth would specialize in tunes weaving in Minnesota history and themes. 

Fred Keller (mandolin) and Tom Cornish (fiddle and guitar) joined us in the studio on February 5, 2015 to share some of those originals and selections from their repertoire of string band, Tin Pan Alley, and swing music. They had a release show in town for their debut album, Up the Road & Down the Flats, the following night.

Warehouse Eyes
Erin Welch

Listen to our session from January 27, 2015 with this Minneapolis synth-pop band that grew out of the duo of Jennie Lawless and Chris Williams. They played us a few tunes including "I Think I Can Live With It," "Without You or Me," and "Smoke" in preview of their show at the Red Herring Lounge in Duluth. 

Jim Walsh is a longtime Minneapolis music writer and songwriter who's been organizing the Mad Ripple Hootenanny for nine years. It's a weekly affair in the Twin Cities, with a rotating cast of musicians swapping tunes, but occasionally the Hoot hits the road. Walsh joined us along with his brother Terry (Belfast Cowboys/St. Dominic's Trio) and singers/songwriters Devaney and Collins on January 18, 2015 on the way to a Hootenanny performance at Lutsen the same night.


This Wisconsin guitar/fiddle duo joined us for a session on January 15, 2015. Along with their repertoire of classic and original tunes inspired by hillbilly, ragtime, vaudeville, western-swing, and old-time fiddling tunes, they've picked up some Scandinavian-influenced regional tunes of the upper Midwest from their old-timer neighbors. They were in town for two performances.

Singer/songwriter, artist, member of the Leech Lake Ojibwe, former marine, and mom; Annie Humphrey is all of these things. She joined us in the studio January 8, 2016. She had a CD release show the same night at the American Indian Community Housing Organization in Duluth, with a display of her art work. Annie performed for our Ojibwe Then and Now concert last year; find the audio under "Related Content" below.

This New York musician put his solo career on hold in 2004 and co-founded indie folk duo Kaiser Cartel. He joined us for a session on December 22, 2015 to talk about his new solo album, Gothenberg, recorded in the Swedish city by the same name. He and his band performed two songs from the album as well as a brand new tune during our session.

The frontman for Minneapolis' the Honeydogs joined us for a session on December 18, 2015. His new solo album, Naubinway, is an intimate disc inspired by the suicide of his son, Daniel; Levy is using his tour as a platform for mental health advocacy. He performed the same night at the Red Herring Lounge with the Social Animals. 

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