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June 3, 2008

Chipped teeth and The Hold Steady

the hold steadyLast week I sat down to talk to rockers The Hold Steady about their new album Stay Positive.

In passing, lead singer and guitarist Craig Finn said he always puts foam wind guards over his microphone.

I asked why and shuddered at his answer. ...

(Photo by Getty Images) 

Turns out, Finn has chipped three teeth from accidentally biting into mikes at gigs. Three. Yeesh.

When I saw them live later that night, it made sense. They were the most animated band I saw all weekend.

Finn hopped around the stage and sang until his face turned red. Guitarist Tad Kubler swigged from a bottle of Jim Beam and unloaded some sizzling riffs on the audience.

And the keyboardist Franz Nicolay (with his mustache, beret driver's cap and necktie) looked like a mashup video game character Mario and a Frenchman. He bit off the cork from a bottle of red wine and took big pulls between songs.

We couldn't have asked for a more high-energy show.

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 2:07 PM | | Comments (5)
Categories: Bars & Clubs, Non-Commvention


GET OUT. That is so awesome. I swear listening to a Hold Steady cd all the way through, is like hearing 12 or so, very carefully crafted stories that'll you'll tell to your kids for years to come.

If for some reason they ever got a tour together with Drive By Truckers, Lucero, and Cory Brannan, I could die a happy man.

I saw their black cat show during the boys and girls in america tour. It is the most authentic rock experience going these days-- people were making out, high five-ing and smiling all night long. This is a great live band....

That post was worth the wait. Thanks Sam!

Craig was quite animated when they played The Ottobar touring behind "Boys and Girls in America". I don't remember him biting the mike, though.

Protecting Your Rights on the Internet
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Hi Sam / Midnight Sun,

On behalf of Rough Trade, Beggars Digital and The Hold Steady, many thanks for plugging "Stay Positive" (street date 15th July) ... .. thanks, also, on behalf of the label and the band for not posting any pirate links to unreleased (studio) material and, if you / your readers want good quality, non-pirated, preview tracks, “Sequestered in Memphis” is available for fans and bloggers to stream / link to on the band’s MySpace ... .. check-out and for details on “Stay Positive” and the band’s 2008 shows and keep an eye out for details of further, preview material and exclusive content.

Thanks again for your plug.



Web Sheriff,

As an open thank you, it's rather working at cross purposes mentioning something you don't want people to seek out.

As far as the interested are concern, they have already started their search engines to discover those missing links.

Happy Hunting!


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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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