Harp Magazine2022-08-13T12:27:02+00:00
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Lucinda Williams, 2007

By Mark Guarino“This is the last batch,” Lucinda Williams says of the songs on West, her new album.But don’t call it a swan song. The new songs confront, rail against and ultimately find solace alongside loneliness and death, the two themes burrowed inside all of her [...]

January 1, 2007|Categories: Harp|

Joanna Newsom

By Mark GuarinoTo play a harp is to look like you’re in love. You rest its spine on your shoulder and extend your arms in an embrace of its 47 strings, running your fingers back and forth in a way that looks like the instrument is [...]

December 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

The Decemberists, 2006

By Mark GuarinoBands fight, bands break up, bands litigate and then, a few years later, bands reunite to pay off the lawyers and ex-wives.The cycle of rock ‘n’ roll acrimony seems an inevitable part of the life until you meet The Decemberists. After five years of [...]

November 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

The Black Keys

By Mark GuarinoWhite people have been playing the blues for such a long time now that there could be a golf course and a Starbucks at Robert Johnson’s crossroads. The fanny pack crowd dominating most blues festivals see the music as a brand representing certain things: [...]

September 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

Sufjan Stevens

By Mark GuarinoFact: The official snack of Illinois is popcorn.Fact: Illinois State Senator Paul Simon (1928-2003) did not write the song “You Can Call Me Al.”Fact: Illinois is a Native American word meaning “tribe of superior men.”Sufjan Stevens will say he prefers living in New York [...]

July 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

Scott Walker

By Mark GuarinoMost teen idols grow up, get fat and find Jesus behind bars. Scott Walker became a cult star. When the Beatles invaded America, the Californian went to the UK and stole their audience. Sparked by his ethereal voice, the Walker Brothers packaged melodrama and [...]

July 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

Soul Asylum

By Mark GuarinoDave Pirner is fighting his way home. “Traffic here ever since the hurricane has been horrific,” he reports, navigating the streets to get to Bywater, the New Orleans neighborhood where he lives. “We almost got hit again and we got into a car accident [...]

June 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

Coldplay at Metro in Chicago May 2006

By Mark GuarinoChris Martin insisted he was joking after calling U2 “the second best band in the world.” But by the tail end of Coldplay’s special club show at Chicago’s Metro, it was no doubt a wink to the wise. Chicagoans had the unusual opportunity to [...]

May 6, 2006|Categories: Harp|

Jon Langford

By Mark GuarinoMeet Jon Langford, American dad.Nothing about his nondescript house on Chicago’s leafy Northwest Side would suggest that a mortgage is met partially through rock music and art. Toys are scattered, two boys are in bed upstairs hearing stories read by their mother, and a [...]

May 1, 2006|Categories: Harp|

The Strokes at the Park West

By Mark GuarinoWhere were the Strokes the day their third album hit stores? It wasn’t New York City but Chicago, where the band played a special club show that disproved the band lost its edge since hibernating in the studio over the past year. At the [...]

January 3, 2006|Categories: Harp|