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  • Article

    Best Folk Artist - Jim Nelson

    One of the most reticent and recondite musicians in St. Louis is also one of the most knowledgeable, skilled and in-demand. Though he'd blanch at the description, guitarist and singer Jim Nelson is to St. Louis folk music what Bob Costas is to baseba...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Cover Band - The Skulls

    The intensity of the Skulls is found in the sweaty face of lead singer Devin Baker -- and also on his arm. His face contorts as he screams out the lyrics to "TV Casualty" and other Misfits covers, but on his arm lies the tattoo that explains it all: ...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best All-Ages Venue - The Pageant

    Built in 2000, the Pageant has quickly filled a gap in the St. Louis music ecosystem, becoming the venue of choice for national bands not big enough for an arena or shed tour. The White Stripes, the Foo Fighters and others have all played here recent...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Turntablist - Kenny Kingston

    To the headz, the term "turntablist" denotes a very specific craft within the DJ community: one who performs tricks and antics and body spins and choreographed dances and basically showboats his or her talents for a few minutes at a time. But really,...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Rock Band - Riddle of Steel

    What is the riddle of steel? Many have contemplated this, but only Crom knows the true answer. The answer -- at least for St. Louis -- is that the Riddle of Steel is a juggernaut rock three-piece formed like a phoenix from the ashes of many other reg...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Music Festival - Washington Avenue Beat Festival

    Beat Festival, the transcendent biannual electronic music festival on Washington Avenue, is the most happening Sunday night in St. Louis ever (and maybe better than the best Saturday night, too). Thousands of wristband-sporting celebrants come out Me...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best New Artist - In Medias Res

    Sure, the music scene is notoriously cyclical, but who saw this revival coming? Five years ago, if you had mentioned funk to a punk rocker, he would've rolled his eyes and made some joke about Primus. But all of a sudden everybody's claiming Gang of ...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Local Label - Ascetic Records

    Hieu Nguyen and Matt Snell launched Ascetic in 2001 because, according to Nguyen, "there have been so many cool labels that have supported so many good bands, we just wanted to do the same." In a relatively short time, the label has put out ten relea...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Jam Band - Naked Groove

    "Ass" is a difficult concept to grasp. It's not that people don't understand its ramifications; more likely, they're not willing to accept the fact that ass is a common denominator in many of the things in life that are good. They think it's a nasty ...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Noise Band - Brain Transplant

    Much like guacamole-flavored potato chips, the music of Brain Transplant don't hardly make no sense to regular folk. You can try to stuff the pigeon into the hole, but you're just going to end up with a mess of blood, feathers and splintered bone. Ac...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Blues Artist - Bennie Smith

    There was a time, long ago, when blues guitar was about simplicity and soul instead of Stevie Ray Vaughan wankery. We might not remember that period, but Bennie Smith does. Smith played with luminaries such as Chuck Berry and Ike and Tina Turner as t...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Rock Radio Program - The Wayback Machine KDHX (88.1 FM)

    On his Web site, Jeff "Kopper" Kopp, the DJ of KDHX's Wayback Machine, claims to play a lot of different music on his show: "'60s garage/psych-punk, '70s proto-punk, instrumental surf/hot rod, frantic R&B, mod, freakbeat, beer-soaked frat rock, broke...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Jazz Artist - John Norment

    Some jazz musicians stay inside, expertly navigating the changes while inventing fresh new melodies on the spot. Others go outside, discarding the boundaries of harmony and stretching music into pure sound with a restless yearning to grab the whole w...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Lounge Act - Tony Viviano

    "Hi, folks, how you doing? Good to see you. Come on in, there's a table right over there. And now, I'd like to do one of my very favorite songs. This one goes out to all you couples out there." Defined in our imagination by the artistry of Sinatra, B...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best Jazz Radio Program - Jazz with Bob Parlocha WSIE (88.7 FM)

    Whether you're driving home from work or a gig or a date along a near-deserted highway, propelled by an urgent walking bass and ride cymbal, or sitting in a third-floor walkup lamenting lost love to the moody musings of a tenor sax, the hours after m...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Best R&B Artist - Oliver Sain

    As a saxophonist, keyboard player, composer, arranger, bandleader, producer, engineer and entrepreneur, Oliver Sain has worked with, influenced and mentored literally hundreds of musicians over the years. The Mississippi native who came to St. Louis ...

    on September 24, 2003
  • Article

    Clean Living - Chris Duarte has kicked addiction, but he still has the blues

    The comparisons were immediate: Chris Duarte was the new Stevie Ray Vaughan. The latter had been dead for four years when Duarte's first proper album appeared in 1994, and fans of the late blues giant were still looking for a suitable replacement. Du...

    by J. Konkel on September 17, 2003
  • Article

    The Kids Aren't Alright - Drugs could have saved the world from Black, Black Ocean

    Drugs have always been linked to mutations and advancements in popular music. Take pot. As early as 1909, the use of marijuana by jazz musicians in New Orleans' red-light district enabled band members to ignore the fatigue brought on by long hours of...

    by John Goddard on September 17, 2003
  • Article

    Donna the Buffalo - Wednesday, September 24; Mississippi Nights

    When Donna the Buffalo performs at Mississippi Nights next Wednesday, it's entirely possible the band won't play a single song from their most recent release, Wait 'Til Spring. If they do, the songs won't sound anything like the recorded versions. Th...

    by Steve Pick on September 17, 2003
  • Article

    Cave-In - Sunday, September 21; Mississippi Nights

    Cave-In is a stellar band, both literally and metaphorically. By taking the crunchy aggression of metal and the melody of emo, adding textures and tricks and then turning the whole thing inside out, they have created a unique yet recognizable sound. ...

    by Erik Alan Carlson on September 17, 2003
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