Best of 2014
& Who To Look Out for in 2015
Thanks to everyone for supporting LiveMusicDaily in 2014.
Twelve months ago I graduated college and moved to a new city where this website, with the support of the live music community, grew into a resource for live music fans to keep up with their favorite artists and discover rising talents they won’t find anywhere else.
Thank you for helping us in our mission to preserve the longevity of the live music community for decades to come.
We have a BRAND NEW LAYOUT headed your way very soon. Cheers ! Onward to 2015.
Best 2014 NYE Runs
Umphrey’s McGee – Tabernacle – Atlanta, GA
Umphrey’s 12.31 set was sprinkled with lots of treats. They covered the Rolling Stones, James Brown, the Kinks, Herbie Hancock, and debuted a new original.
Gov’t Mule’s “Back at the Beacon” – NYC
The entire second set speaks for itself…
12/31/14 (Wed) Beacon Theatre – New York City, NY
Set 1: No Reward, Scared To Live, Banks Of The Deep End, Dolphineus > Painted Silver Light, Captured, Fool’s Moon > Politician > Fool’s Moon, Time To Confess, Railroad Boy > Lay Your Burden Down, Kind Of Bird, Bring On The Music
Set 2: Highway To Hell, Let There Be Rock, Sin City, Shoot To Thrill, Rock & Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution, Girls Got Rhythm, Ride On > Night Prowler, T.N.T., Back In Black, Hells Bells, You Shook Me All Night Long > Problem Child, Beating Around The Bush, For Those About To Rock (We Salute You), Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, Whole Lotta Rosie, E: It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll)
Comment: Entire second set with Myles Kennedy playing all AC/DC songs
Widespread Panic – Charlotte, NC
One definite highlight from Widespread Panic’s Nye performance was a “Happy” (Rolling Stones)>”Happy” (Widespread Panic)>”Happy” (Pharell Williams).
Of course, the show wouldn’t have been complete without a proper Joe Cocker nod.
Phish – Miami
A brand new official video release from Phish of “Theme from the Bottom” in Miami, which was definitely a highlight jam of their run at the American Airlines Arena in Miami.
Of course that Weekapaug was a heater as well.
String Cheese Incident – Broomfield, CO
While this is clearly a phone shot video you still get the point, as Cheese rings in the New Year at midnight they welcome 2015 with a scorching cover of Kool & the Gang’s “Celebration”.
12/31/14 (Wed) 1st Bank Center – Broomfield, CO
Set 1: Black Clouds, Smile, Let’s Go Outside, Sweet Spot, Water > Kinky Reggae > On The Road
Set 2: Cant Wait Another Day, Miss Brown’s Teahouse, Desert Dawn, I’m Still Here, Way Back Home > Fool In The Rain > Way Back Home > Jellyfish > Desert Dawn
Set 3: Don’t It Make You Wanna Dance, Land’s End, Glory Chords > Celebration w Liza > Rosie, Late In The Evening, Rivertrance, This Must Be The Place > Just One Story, E: Bollymunster, Good Times Around The Bend
Best Rising Artists of 2014
This group is the full package. Their live performance gives fans a very nice balance of all things great about music. They’re adept improvisers of their instruments, but have a very solid lyrical and songwriting foundation for all of their songs led by Nick McDaniels’ vocals.
There was no hesitation to place Tauk on LiveMusicDaily’s list of Favorite Rising Artists. The group has been heavily touring this year winning over new fans at an incredibly fast rate and released an incredible studio effort, Collisions, in 2014. The coming year likely see them on more co-bills with some fairly well known artists and even more festival appearances.
A full blown funk party from outer space featuring beautiful vocal harmonies, horns, and a whole lot of soul. You literally have no soul if you don’t get down to this band.
“Phoniks is hands down our favorite rising hip-hop producer in the game. The Portland, ME based producer is revisiting the sounds of the 90s era of hip-hop and his techniques thrive on a keen understanding of collaborative magic. That is not to say that his beats are not complex, they are simply well calculated. Horns, smooth piano lines, and symphonic ambience help define this signature sound.” –LiveMusicDaily (August 26, 2014)
This outstanding underground hip-hop producer pairing up with artists like Awon, Dephlow, and Priest. He’s managed to gain a strong following on Soundcloud with millions of plays despite no commercial radio backing. In fact he is a co-founder of the upcoming Don’t Sleep Records.
If you don’t care for mainstream hip-hop then please give Phoniks a listen he literally takes it back to the “good ole days” and you can thank us later.
Artists to Watch in 2015 : A Beautiful Buzz
Sumilan has been laying a bit off the radar in recent months from the touring world as they prepare for the release of their sophomore release. Think Rage Against the Machine meets Umphrey’s McGee meets Muse meets Daft Punk. We’ve gotten a preview of the unmastered tracks and this album is going to be something to feast your ears on.
Their last album was recorded over two years ago and they’ve grown a great deal over that time-frame. Nonetheless, this debut album is definitely notable and a great introduction into the next stellar live music act birthed in Athens, GA.
Atlas Road Crew
Atlas Road Crew is a powerful rock n roll band in the modern day that draws on the strengths of Southern and Classic Rock legends. It may take them some more time on the road, but this band is definitely going to be dropping some jaws in 2015.
There is a reason that Pretty Lights selected Cory Wythe to remix a track off “A Color Map of the Sun”, which was later nominated for a grammy. Gramatik added to him to his New York City show for a good reason. So trust me, just because you may not have heard of him doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be paying attention.
Marvel Years is just getting started.He is currently dedicating most of his time to finishing up his new album. 2015 will definitely see him touring with even more great artists, performing at more festivals, and gaining a larger fan base with his forthcoming release.
This is nasty future funk, hop on board because Marvel Years is headed to the top of the game.
Major & the Monbacks
Do you remember when music on the radio used to be good ? Well that ship sailed a long time ago. Back when they actually played music on the radio a group like the Monbacks was famous.
Major & the Monbacks can prove something to listeners if their next release is a strong follow up to their last one. The group is taking a great deal of the Spring off the road in order to make sure they nail this album.
If you enjoy the Blues Brothers, motown classics, or St. Paul & the Broken Bones you should definitely give them a listen.
Trey Anastasio Band – Paper Wheels
The band has already given a preview of two tracks off the new album, and both indicate this will likely be the best Trey Anastasio album you’ve ever heard.
To learn more about the album check out our interview with TAB bassist Tony Markellis. We have interviewed Russ Lawton (drums) and James Casey (Sax), check back soon for the interviews to go live.
The Ringers – Supergroup Tour of the Year
The Ringers are probably the best supergroup out there for those of you who are musicians. This supergroup features Wayne Krantz, Michael Landau, and Jimmy Herring on guitar, Etienne Mbappe (Bass), and Keith Carlock (Drums).
In case you missed it check out our interview with Jimmy Herring conducted after the Ringers Washington, DC performance this past year.
Just yesterday the group announced their first studio album is in the works, “First Ringers album out sometime soon in 2015”.
Rookie of the Year
In Fall 2009 a bandmate of mine, Phil Walker, told me about some New Orleans musicians he grew up with who had just formed a band called Earphunk. They sent us soundboard recordings and not long after they made website. Ever since then it has been our mission to tell everyone that the next generation of New Orleans funk is here.
2014 was a HUGE year for the band. In 2014 they celebrated their third cross-country tour and in the middle of being road warriors managed to record a brand new album, Sweet Nasty. In a very well calculated and strategic plan the group released the album via Torrentbundle and quickly received well over 580,000 downloads. Shortly thereafter they were signed to Paradiagm Agency.
Earphunk put in the time, the effort, the hours, and the heart into their endeavor and it is paying off tremendously. For any rising bands out there trying to figure out their strategy in taking it to the next level take Earphunk and Alex Bowen (Manager) serve as a prime example of what it takes to make the next step on the live music circuit.
Hearty Har – Self Titled
Shane Fogerty and friends released an album that is a time travel back into the realm of psychedelia, but with unpredictable song structures and an indie garage rock sound that really leaves them in a genre of their own. Think Tame Impala meets Blitzen Trapper meets Frank Zappa… Yes it is that hard to describe.
All I can say is that these guys are just getting started, add them to your radar for 2015.
Phish – Fuego
A fun Phish album that saw the band continuing to push themselves into the future. They have heavily played songs like “Fuego” and “555” since the release to develop a live identity to these new tracks. Of course Summer Tour everyone got a “Fuego”, but we aren’t complaining we dig it.
Railroad Earth – Last of the Outlaws
While Railroad Earth delivers strong improvisation live in concert at the heart of the band they keep a keen understanding for lyrical importance and songwriting that often separates them from those who are primarily instrumental and those that are mainly lyrically focused. This album is another one to add to their strong repoiritire of studio albums.
Umphrey’s McGee – Similar Skin
Earphunk- “Sweet Nasty”
Best Cover Song
Mclovin’s “Atlantic City”
This cover is off the charts. No contest here for the #1 slot.
Widespread Panic “Slippin’ Into Darkness” with Chris Robinson, Neal Casal and Steve Lopez sitting in.
Umphrey’s McGee “Walk this Sweet Funk Emotion”
Umphrey’s performed some pretty insane mashups in 2014, but this one is genius.
Mashup of Sweet Emotion (Aerosmith) + Walk This Way (Run–D.M.C.) + Funk 49 (James Gang) w/ Brendan, Jake, Joel, and Ryan on percussion. Get the full show on Digital Download only HERE:http://tourgigs.com/show/umphreysmcge…
Widespread Panic- Covering Black Sabbath’s “Sweetleaf” on Halloween
Best Music Festival
While part of a festival experience often includes discovering new bands I must say Lock’n was smart to differentiate themselves from every other festival. Simply put… the line up is “All killer, no filler.”
Concert of the Year
This concert was off the charts, best concert of the year by far.
Soundcheck: Sand Jam, Waiting All Night
Set 2: Wilson > Tweezer -> Back on the Train -> Tweezer > Back on the Train -> Tweezer> Waiting All Night > Free -> Tweezer -> Simple -> Tweezer -> Free -> Catapult -> Slave to the Traffic Light > Down with Disease -> NICU -> Hold Your Head Up > Jennifer Dances > Hold Your Head Up, I Been Around