Those of you that have visited Flying Mango Restaurant and have met us, know that we have a passion for the arts! Just by hanging out at the Mango, you're surrounded by vibrant artwork by our friend, hc porter (www.hcporter.com) and get a chance to listen to some awesome blues while dining.
In mid-2006, we decided that it was time to introduce our Mango friends to some great live music by some very talented musicians that they may not have been introduced to yet! This is not something we do all the time. We do our best to contact some of our favorites, and if they're coming through Iowa, we do what we can to organize an evening for you to meet. These are truly great parties! Great food, great music and in a non-smoking setting, long before the state insisted everyone comply! Remember we're small, so if you hear of an event coming, order your tickets quickly as we sell out fast. We are currently working with MidwesTix, another great local business. By letting them handle what they do well, we can concentrate on getting the party going and that's what we do well! We hope you'll join us at our next Pretentious Redneck Dinner or Mango Music Night. We'd love to have you!--Mike and Suzanne
Check out videos from the performances at Flying Mango.
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Our local ticket partner is MidwesTIX. They are good peeps and active in our community!
Get to know them.
Upcoming music & dinner events:
Flying Mango is known as a 'listening room'. Small Plates Menu is available. Shows start at 7:00. Doors open at 6:00. Tickets are ONLY SOLD THROUGH MIDWESTIX.
02.22.15 NATALIA ZUKERMAN $20
03.22.15 CARRIE RODRIGUEZ $35
03.23.15 CARRIE RODRIGUEZ $35
Past music & dinner events...
We encourage you to visit the musician's websites, listen and learn more about each of them.
12.08 & 09.14 STEPHEN KELLOGG
Flying Mango is thrilled to have Stephen back, and this time for two consecutive nights of his "Every Night's A Little Differnt Tour". Please doublecheck that you are purchasing tickets for the night you intended.Note that Stephen does perform different sets each night of this tour- so perhaps we will see some of you both evenings??
Stephen Kellogg has performed more than 1500
concerts in the last decade or so. Most recently he's traveled Europe
with Josh Ritter and landed on an aircraft carrier in the middle east to
perform for the Armed Forces. Though his songs are in the tradition of
classic artists like Jackson Browne and John Prine, he's been called "the best live act you've never seen" by
CBS Radio. Additionally, Stephen Kellogg has well publicized affection
for his role as father to four daughters and husband to a high school
sweetheart which would almost be enough to make you not like the guy if
he wasn't so, well...likable. For an evening of uplifting songs about life, love and the pursuit (and sometimes failure) of obtaining happiness, catch Kellogg on this intimate tour. He will be performing with an acoustic trio and doing different songs each night spanning the last 10 years of his career.
05.27.14 SETH WALKER TRIO
Revered roots music troubadour Seth Walker recently
took up residency in New Orleans. Upon relocating to the Big Easy, the
North Carolina-native completed his rounds of the Holy Trinity of
southern American music cities. His journey began in Austin where he
fast became a staple of the Texas blues scene. He’d later shuffle off to
Nashville where he’d absorb the cosmopolitan twang of its storytelling
tradition. Clearly, however, it is the influence of his current NOLA
home with its funky melting-pot swagger that inspired the gospel-soaked
fervor and gritty guitar burn at the core of his latest album, Sky Still Blue, due June 10 from The Royal Potato Family
Walker didn't have much opportunity to be lonesome as a child growing
up on a two-family commune in rural North Carolina. His parents were
both classical musicians, and his first axe was the cello, not the
guitar. The tastes of the commune's other residents ran more to Texas
country music, so his youth was filled with the sounds of Mozart and
Beethoven coexisting with Jerry Jeff Walker and Willie Nelson.
Walker discovered the guitar in college and never looked back. "I was
just eaten up with it, man," he says, his enthusiasm still evident. "I
was just crazy for it. I immediately gravitated to the blues, but as I
played I started to lean towards the uptown side, the jazzier side, and I
think that probably has something to do with my classical training."
His uncle Landon Walker was a jazz bassist and blues DJ on
Jacksonville, Florida radio station WJCT, and would mail tapes to his
nephew on a regular basis. "It covered the whole gamut of blues," Walker
recalls, "from the Piedmont stuff - Reverend Gary Davis, Blind Willie
McTell and Blind Blake - to the Chicago stuff - Muddy Waters and Robert
Nighthawk - and a lot of Texas stuff - Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown,
T-Bone Walker, Lightnin' Hopkins. But the guys in my dorm room were
listening to Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton, so that
blues-rock sound definitely got my attention. It seemed a lot more
interesting than going to school, so there went my education."
Walker set out for Jacksonville with dreams of stardom ("I ended up
playing in a Grateful Dead cover band," he says ruefully), but before
long realized that he needed to relocate to a more music-rich hub. He
landed in Austin in 1995 and has remained in legendarily musical
metropolises ever since.
07.22.13 Emily Elbert
Emily Elbert is going places. Full of love, soul, and
wanderlust, the 24-year-old has performed all over the U.S. and in 15
countries around the world, from Peru to Palestine, from Turkey to
Thailand. Raised in Texas on a musical diet of Antonio Carlos Jobim,
James Taylor, and ’60s radio, Emily first fell in love with guitar as a
teenager. Electrified, she dove into writing, singing, performing, and
recording, and set her sights on attending the prestigious Berklee
College of Music in Boston. She soon landed a coveted spot in the
Gibson/Baldwin Grammy Foundation’s jazz ensemble, and was awarded a
four-year, full-tuition scholarship. Now the recent Berklee graduate has
played over 600 shows internationally, released three independent
albums of original material, and won awards on both sides of the
Known for her strong melodies, straight-to-the-heart vocals, and
intricate guitar work, Emily has performed at some of the best listening
rooms and clubs in the country. These include Brooklyn Bowl, Hotel
Café, Club Passim, The Cactus Café, The Tin Angel, City Winery, The
Living Room, Rockwood Music Hall, and The Kessler Theater. She has also
opened for artists including G. Love & Special Sauce, Tuck &
Patti, Richie Havens, Leon Russell, Kaki King, Jorge Drexler, Kate
Voegele, Joan Osbourne, Ryan Montbleau, Livingston Taylor, and Patty
Larkin. Recent awards include being selected as the First Place Winner
of the 2012 B.W. Stevenson Memorial Songwriting Contest, as well as a
2012 Timberland Community Eco-Friendly Artist. She was also named to the
top five of the Mountain Stage/NewSong contest in 2010 and Glamour
Magazine selected Emily as one of their Top Ten College Women, 2010.
She’s a winner of Scotland’s 2009 BurnSong International Song Contest
and was named the Best New Artist of 2008 by WUMB-FM Radio in Boston.
The Dallas Morning News selected her as Local Rookie of the Year, 2007.
Music lovers have watched Emily’s YouTube videos in droves, including
over 400,000 views of her version of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and
over a million views of her YouTube channel. She’s played festivals
ranging from Indonesia’s Java Jazz Fest to Massachusetts’ Boston Folk
Fest. Emily co-produced and self-released her debut album, Bright Side,
in 2006 and her second album, Proof, in 2010. Her third CD, a live,
full-band recording, entitled Alive, In Love was released in May, 2012.
The Boston Folk Festival says, “Emily is among the most glowing of the
upcoming generation of American singer-songwriters, if ‘upcoming’ even
applies to this phenom any longer.”
06.10.13 Ryan Montbleau Band - offsite at Temple for Performing Arts
06.03.13 Stephen Kellogg - Solo
Autobiography – February 2013
My name is Stephen Kellogg. I’m thirty-six years old. I say that I’m from Northampton, MA because that’s where I got my start, though now I live in Southern Connecticut. I’ve spent the better part of the last ten years on the road or in the studio, but I have four daughters and a beautiful wife too. I asked if I could write my own biography, partially because it saves money, and I figured if someone wanted to learn about me, I’d just as soon tell them myself.
My music has been described as Americana, Country-Rock, Folk, Singer/Songwriter, and, somehow, pop. I have always thought of it as American-rock n’ roll. It’s a product of my father’s record collection, from Jim Croce and Cat Stevens to Eagles and The Band. Somewhere along the way, I fell in love with showmanship and acts that put on great concerts. Sometimes that meant Van Halen, other times it meant the Grateful Dead, and most recently it’s probably more to do with John Prine. For what it’s worth, Tom Petty is my favorite artist. Although it’s been pointed out to me by one quite popular publication that I’m “no Bruce Springsteen”, I’ve decided to continue making music anyway (I’m laughing as I write this in case that’s not clear).
The thing is…I fell into this job. I like people. I like sharing a world-view. I don’t mind singing and playing guitar, but I never expected that I’d do it for a living. Like a lot of folks, I think I just figured I wasn’t good enough or that maybe it wasn’t possible. The fact remained though that I needed a way to provide for my family,
presumably just like those of you reading this biography (or for the younger generations, the same way your parents have). Ultimately writing songs and playing them for people has become that living. There are many occupations for which I have immense admiration - doctors, soldiers and teachers topping the list. But there isn’t another job I think I’d necessarily be suited for, so this is what I do.
In November of 2012, my band of the last ten years decided to take a hiatus. We performed our final show at Webster Hall in New York City for three hours and said goodbye for now. 2012 also took with it my mother-inlaw and my grandmother. Most of this happened in late Spring, when my house was under renovation; the foundation was still there, but the house was literally ripped apart. Some metaphor, huh? 2012 was a year of change if nothing else. The musical result of this tumultuous period is Blunderstone Rookery. The title comes from the boyhood home of my favorite character in my favorite book, “David Copperfield”.
I produced Blunderstone Rookery in conjunction with my long-time musical collaborator, Kit Karlson. Mike Mogis (Bright Eyes, Monsters of Folk) mixed the album. We chose to make the record in Bridgeport, Connecticut because, after making the last few in Los Angeles and New York, I really wanted to work on home turf. The music was played by a number of friends of mine, some of them play in bands you may have heard of (Travis McNabb and Annie Clements from Sugarland, Sean Watkins from Nickel Creek, Jerry DePizzo from OAR), and many of them, including me, you may not have heard of. I loved working on Blunderstone Rookery more than any album I’ve ever made and it’s my ninth studio effort. It was a fresh process. One that began with the exciting notion, “what if I say exactly what I want to say” and ended with me handing my father a vinyl copy to add to his record
That, after all, is why I do this.
Using words and intention in the hopes of a positive legacy for my family.
04.28.13 Ray Bonneville
Flying Mango welcomes for the first time, Ray Bonneville - a hard
driving, blues influenced, song and groove man who often writes about
people who live on the fringe of society. Ray’s vibe is loose and
soulful. With a greasy guitar style, horn-like harmonica phrasing, smoky
vocal style and pulsing foot percussion he immediately rivets
audiences. His solo performance fills a concert hall with all the sound
layering and drama of a full band. The consummate, driven professional,
Ray plays more that one hundred and fifty shows a year across the US,
Canada and Europe. He has a loyal, enthusiastic fan base wherever he
In 1999 he won the Juno award (Canada’s Grammy) and was nominated twice
more after that. His song about the resilience of New Orleans, “I am the
Big Easy” was the most played song by North American folk DJs, and won
“Song of the Year” at Folk Alliance in Memphis in 2009, the same city
where he took first place in the International Blues Challenge in 2012.
About that award he says “I just went to Memphis to meet some new folks,
so it took me by surprise when they announced my name; I see what I do
as the offspring of traditional blues music”.
He was forty-one when he started writing songs and making records after
playing all over for twenty years. When asked why it took so long, he
replied “it’s hard to say, but I only spoke French until I was twelve
years old when my family suddenly moved us from Quebec to the Boston
area, so maybe it took me that long to really feel the nuance of the
04.07.13 & 04.08.13 Carrie Rodriguez
Carrie returns to Flying Mango for two consecutive evenings to support
her new album, Give Me All You Got. At each stage of Carrie Rodriguez’s
career—as a fiddler, singer, and songwriter—the Austin, Texas, native
has learned the importance of letting go. That was certainly true when
it came to recording her fifth solo album, Give Me All You Got, her
first of largely original tunes in several years. “In the making of Love
and Circumstance in 2008, I chose to sing other people’s songs,”
Rodriguez explains. “I needed to take a step back from songwriting and
think about the kinds of songs that feel important to sing. Doing that
inspired me to write again.”
Rodriguez, who came to attention a decade ago performing with
singer-songwriter Chip Taylor, has established an impressive roster of
touring, recording, and co-writing affiliations—with Lucinda Williams,
Rickie Lee Jones, John Prine, Mary Gauthier, Alejandro Escovedo,
guitarist Bill Frisell, and others. Although she has issued three albums
under her own name and enjoyed major label support for 2008’s She Ain’t
Me, the release of Give Me All You Got marks a giant step for
Rodriguez. The album was recorded with her own band and produced by the
renowned Lee Townsend, with whom she has worked closely in the past. And
the songs—which she wrote, co-wrote, or handpicked from the repertoire
of longtime collaborators—establish her musical identity more powerfully
than ever before.
With the release of Give Me All You Got, Rodriguez is ready to say: “As a
singer-songwriter, I feel like I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing.
It’s a lifelong learning curve, and I hope I always stay as excited
about it as I am now.”
11.05.12 & 11.06.12 Ryan Montbleau Band
Songs for Ryan Montbleau typically need to simmer. In his 10-year career this gifted singer and his limber band have built their catalog the old-fashioned way, by introducing new songs to their live set, then bending and shaping them over dozens of performances before committing a definitive version to the hard drive.
For that and many other reasons, Montbleau's next album, For Higher, is quite literally a departure. Well-established out of his home base in the Northeast, the singer threw himself into New Orleans, where everything is slow-cooked, for a few fast-moving days — and whipped up an instant delicacy.
A few of the cuts on the new album — the playful stomp of “Deadset” or “Head Above Water,” freshly peppered with horns — were already part of the Ryan Montbleau Band's ever-growing repertoire. But the majority, including four handpicked cover tunes — stone soul nuggets from Bill Withers, Curtis Mayfield, the late Muscle Shoals guitarist Eddie Hinton and more — came together spontaneously, with little prepwork.
It was a feel thing, with Montbleau putting heads together with fellow music head Ben Ellman of New Orleans flag-bearers Galactic. The singer and songwriter first eased his way into the city when he was invited to contribute songs to Backatown, the breakthrough album of favorite son Trombone Shorty. That went so well, Montbleau co-wrote two more songs for Shorty's recent follow-up, “For True.”
When Montbleau sent videos of himself performing the songs, Ellman, who produced “Backatown,” was impressed. Why not come down and do a record of your own? he asked.
Almost before he got an answer, Ellman had assembled a band of ringers – keyboard/B3 player Ivan Neville, French Quarter mainstay Anders Osborne on guitar, drummer Simon Lott, and the estimable George Porter, Jr. of the Meters and countless funky sessions on bass. Though Montbleau has released several solo records and three albums credited to his full band, he felt like this was an all-new hurdle he'd have to clear.
“My main issue was, what would I bring in for material?” he recalls, sitting in the kitchen of the spacious home he and several bandmates share in an industrial city north of Boston. “I'd never done a session like that.
“Our band will 'shed songs on the road for years and then record them, and there's strength in that. But there's also strength in putting together these other badasses for a few days.”
And his New Orleans band proved, in fact, to be most badass. If Montbleau was initially a bit apprehensive that the sessions might represent just another paycheck for his sidemen, he quickly learned otherwise. “Every single person, kind of to my amazement, got into it,” he says. “They listened to every playback, and they were high-fiving each other. They were great.”
Staying at Ellman's house while recording the new album, Montbleau spent his downtime cruising the streets of New Orleans on a borrowed vintage bike. “There's clearly no American city like it, at all,” he says. “It's deep, dark and beautiful.”
Unlike Montbleau's previous recordings, which showcase his own maturing songcraft, the new album draws a lot of its depth and beauty from its cover songs. Perfectly titled is the beatific “Sweet, Nice and High,” originally recorded by the forgotten soul supergroup Rhinoceros. On the other end of the moodswing, Mayfield's “Here But I'm Gone,” written and recorded for the great singer's last album, after the accident that left him paralyzed, is a shimmering testament to human frailty.
“Sometimes I feel like there are so many songs — who the hell needs another song?” Montbleau asks. But then he'll discover another new inspiration — sitting at the kitchen table sipping tea, there's a vinyl copy of an old Billy Preston album propped on the windowsill behind him — and another lyric or melody will come to him like a visitation. And when the song becomes a reality, and the crowds begin to sing it back to him, well, that's what it's all about.
At 34, he's a late-bloomer who's right on time. Montbleau didn't start singing and playing guitar in earnest until he was in college, at Villanova. Later, working at the House of Blues in Boston, he began playing solo sets there as a warmup act. His band — there's now six of them — came together naturally, over time, planting strong roots in coffeeshops, folk venues and rock clubs before converting audiences on an outdoor festival circuit that now stretches across the country. Through word of mouth and repeat visits, the band has built a devoted following from the Northeast to Chicago, Seattle and Austin. “It's like watching the grass grow,” says the easygoing Montbleau.
Far from feeling left out of the New Orleans sessions, his band is already feeding hungrily on the arrangements from the new album in their live sets.
“We've done a good job staying in one direction, just moving forward,” says the singer. “We all just really want to get better. I try to instill it in the guys — if we just keep it together, good stuff is gonna continue to happen.”
When the crowds are dancing, the band digs deeper in the pocket. But Montbleau, who still performs solo, is constantly looking to strike a balance between the contagious energy of moving bodies and making a closer connection.
“You can still dance and have a good time,” he says of his fast-spreading fan base, “but I love when you listen.”
10.29.12 Jonah Smith
Jonah Smith has the range to write the simplest folk song or an orchestral arrangement and he does both on his new album, Little Known Cure. Smith wrote, produced and arranged this new album with money he raised from his fans. Smith has been operating as a musical iconoclast for years, well known in New York as a top-flight songwriter and a powerful, expressive singer. Since his last release, Lights On, was released two years ago Smith has performed extensively in the US, Europe, and Asia, and his artistic wanderlust has won him thousands of fans around the world. He was recently invited as a guest vocalist with Los Lobos and has also performed with members of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra. After more than a decade of non-stop performing in venues from clubs to concert halls, Smith has become an irresistible live performer with the ability to connect with any audience.
Unafraid to express his political views in his music, Jonah Smith added his voice to the growing chorus of the 99% by releasing a video shot in Zuccotti Park for “Live One” a song that recaps the 2008 financial meltdown with wry humor and a groove reminiscent of a classic Taj Mahal record. Smith’s point of view can also be heard on his Guthrie-esque folk song, “Big Box Town” which tells the story of an Ohio town that loses its identity as it is populated with chain stores.
But politics is far from the only thing on Smith’s mind. The album is filled with love songs like “Under The Gun” and “You Always Think It’s You,” a blues where he envisions his grandmother as an outlaw (“This House Ain’t No Fun”), an Americana pastoral that takes place in a small East Nevada town (“Land Of Long Reds”), and even a song about the state of popular music and his enduring love for vinyl records (“Blues On Sideways”).
It’s a rarity for a singer-songwriter to have a band of this caliber stay so consistent; the album was made in Brooklyn with his long-time musical comrades: bassist, Ben Rubin has been playing with Smith for eighteen years, David Soler adds unique sound effects and textural guitar and pedal steel work, Andy Stack lends integral harmonies and acoustic finger picking, and Gintas Janusonis, who has toured with Smith for years, makes his album debut here with assured simplicity and a deep pocket bolstering the arrangements. Guest musicians also add a strong flavor to the album. Doug Wamble (Wynton Marsalis) adds beautiful resonator guitar on several songs including a great slide solo on the Todd Snider penned “Carla” (the one song not written by Smith). Mike Bram (Jason Mraz) adds blues harp to “Live One” and Sasha Dobson (Norah Jones) sings harmony vocals on “Under The Gun.” The sound of the album was tied together by the creative mixing of Danny Molad (Lucius) who adds personality to the arrangements with tape effects, fuzz, and reverbs.
Little Known Cure is a self-assured production by an artist in the prime of his career. Says Smith, “This album speaks to who I am now as an artist: eclectic and unafraid.
06.24.12 Seth Walker
“The first time I heard Seth Walker at a small club in Nashville I was impressed like I haven’t been impressed in 30 years, with performance, presence, and greatsongs.” — Delbert McClinton
“Seth Walker swings, rocks, boogies,and plays low down blues all in one set, all on one record. He’s a great singer, and authentic performer of real American music, and he’s writing new classics. Don’t miss a chance to hear Seth. In person or on record, he’s the real deal.” — Marcia Ball
Time is relative: if you’re just going through the motions, the minutes and hours sluggishly drag on. When you’re doing what you love, the days fly by. In the three years since his last album, Seth Walker moved to Nashville from Austin, wrote songs with friends new and old, and played many, many shows. And just like most people, he thought about life, about love, and about the changes we all experience as you move away (both geographically and philosophically) from those people and places you know so well to try your hand at something new. His latest recording Time Can Change is a culmination of these experiences—the sound of an artist moving beyond his comfort zone and challenging himself to walk new creative ground.
06.18.12 Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers
Stripped Down & Fully Clothed Tour
On Gift Horse, their second album for Vanguard and fifth studio effort overall, Stephen Kellogg and his bandmates— Kit “Goose” Karlson (keys, bass, vocals), Brian “Boots” Factor (drums, vocals) and Sam “Steamer” Getz (guitars, vocals)—bring the rich legacy of American rock & roll into the present tense. This is thrilling music, muscular, immediate and life-embracing, steeped in tradition but addressing the present moment boldly and eloquently.
Kellogg chose to title the album Gift Horse for a clear-cut thematic reason. “When you name a record,” he says, “you’re looking for something that feels right. There’s the old saying, ‘Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth,’ which translated to me as showing appreciation for what you have.’ And I thought, that’s exactly what this record’s about - appreciation that I have a job right now in 2011, with all that’s going on economically in our country; appreciation for my family, because there’s nothing that I value more; and appreciation of America in general.”
By and large, the songs ofGift Horse are real-life narratives, most of them directly relating to personal experiences. At the same time, the album is set against the broader tableau of contemporary America. In Kellogg’s new songs, this is no static backdrop but a turbulent, often bitter reality that works its way into every aspect of our lives.
“In terms of what’s going on in America right now, I have definite opinions, and pretty passionate ones,” he says. “I see a lot of division, with extremists on both sides, but I think there’s a huge number of people who have opinions that fall right in the middle of all that. I’m one of them, and I hope that I can speak to those people and say, ‘Hey, it’s OK to be moderate about things; being radical doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re right about something. I try to take that point of view and bring it into our music. Let’s establish the fact that we all belong here, and then maybe we can work through our differences with a little more grace.”
Gift Horse stands as an unambiguous statement of belonging and persevering during these times—the record is as straightforward, and as resonant, as that. “I’ve been putting out records for 10 years now and I’ve made plenty of mistakes, Kellogg says. “They say you get one shot, but I don’t believe that for a second. You get as many shots as you’re willing to hang in there and go for. We’ve learned a lot, and that’s worth something to me. I’m trying to focus on the things that are real and within my grasp: the people who come to our shows and listen to the music, my kids and my wife and my friends.”
There’s nothing hidden or tentative about Kellogg’s music or the values he stands for. If you’ve been itching to crank up some bracing, timeless rock & roll that speaks to these values loudly and proudly, then Gift Horse is exactly what you’ve been waiting for.
04.29.12 Mike Farris
In music there are those special artists that seem to transcend genre and defycategorization. From time to time one hears a voice that can stop you dead in your tracks and shake your very foundation to the core. Mike Farris is that artist and he has that voice.
Mike Farris continues to amaze audiences whenever he plays solo or with any one of his different configurations from the stripped down Cumberland Saints to the full 9 piece Roseland Rhythm Revue. His voice connects and mesmerizes in such a way that it doesn’t matter if the songs are his own compositions or ones sung 200 years ago. As Mike puts it “this music - it’s so beyond us, we only perpetuate it. We are just cooks in the kitchen.” If so Mike Farris is one “cook” with an immediate voice.
03.11.12 Ryan Montbleau Band
Flying Mango is bringing back one of THE BEST live bands EVER to Des Moines. Last time was an off-site experience with plenty of theater seating. This time - the intimate setting of Flying Mango - upon the request of RMB. Due to size of band, fewer seats are available than is typical at FM. Get yours asap.
11.13.11 Lipbone Redding & The LipBone Orchestra
11.07.11 Sharon Little
Thanks to all who attended our first off-site music event. The Temple staff and facility were great! MUCH fun video of Ryan Montbleau Band and opening act Corey Wedeking is on our You Tube Channel. Enjoy, but remember video will NEVER do any musician justice. Whenever you can - be in the room for a performance. There's never a way to capture that energy on tape. Support live music!
10.10.11 Ryan Montbleau Band
Get up to speed by visiting Ryan's site or catching some video on Mango's YouTube site. Remember to look down in our subscription section to find Ryan's Channel. We also have a few of his videos listed in the Favorites section.
“Time hangs heavy on the vine/Let's make wine,” Ryan Montbleau sings in the lulling, sensual verse that gives his group's new album its title. Ryan Montbleau Band has been tending its own musical vineyard for a few years, on the patient cusp of a breakthrough. Their distinctive, long-fermenting blend of neo-folk, classic soul, and kick-out-the-jams Americana finally comes to full fruition in Heavy on the Vine. It's an album that represents the product of — and further promise of — a very good year.
Don't worry if the classic sounds they've bottled up remain a little hard to put a label on. “I'm not one of these people who say 'Oh, we can't be pigeonholed.' I honestly wish we could, just so I could describe it quickly to people,” says Montbleau. “This record has folk songs, funk songs, country tunes, a reggae tune . . . and the end is almost like prog-rock. It's all over the map, but it's all us, and we do it all wholeheartedly. We've sort of come up in the jam scene, and that's where our hearts have been in a lot of ways, but we don't go off on 15-minute epics. We're actually trying to make the songs shorter as we go. So I would lean much more toward the Americana thing than the jam thing. But, more than anything, we're definitely about the song.”
Having a reputation as a quintessential live band — and surviving off that constant demand — is 90 percent blessing, 10 percent curse. “I used to try so hard just to get gigs, and now it's like I've gotta beat 'em away with a stick. We always have these opportunities to play, but we want to continue to buckle down and make the art better and keep making the tunes better. We can't gig ourselves to death. We need to take some time off to create, but that can be difficult to pull off financially. As the shows get bigger, we take in enough money that we can live, and it all continues to get better. I think, what if we didn't do 200 gigs a year, but just did 150? We're working on that.” And the shows do stand to get bigger, if the new project reaches its natural audiences: For all its eclecticism, Heavy on the Vine is the kind of album that screams “potential mainstream smash” more than obvious cult record — should the stars and mercurial market forces align.
Abject realism and a sense of limitless possibility coexist in Montbleau's ever-ripening mind. “For the last 10 years, I've had this insane desire to just go out there and do this. And I face the realities that, okay, I'm 33 and I'm not selling out stadiums yet. I get more realistic as I go and I also get more appreciative of just being able to do this at all. My goal for a few years when I was starting out was to make a living off playing music, and now I've been doing that for seven years or so, and the goals change as you go. Now the goal is to spend more time practicing and writing and creating, and a little less time doing all the business stuff. These are interesting times.Â And no matter how many good people you have around you, you still have to be the CEO and run things.”
Tempted as Montbleau might be to look toward the big picture, not losing sight of the small one is why the band has maintained such a loyal and evangelistically inclined base. “I still go back to my original philosophy of just one person at a time,” he says. “I never even told people 'Bring your friends to the show' at the beginning, because it wasn't about them bringing their friends, it was about them bringing themselves. I'm trying to focus on the one person, because if they come and like it, they are going to bring their friends. We're still grass roots in that way.” No surprise, then, that those well-tended roots have sprung up into such pregnant vines.
For the rest of the article....... or full bio........
07.18.11 Carrie Rodriguez
Love and family have always been sources of inspiration for critically acclaimed singer/songwriter/musician Carrie Rodriguez, but never have they featured so prominently than on her brand new release Love & Circumstance, a covers album that includes songs written by her father, and once performed by her great aunt.
Rodriguez' professional career was launched in 2001 after a show at South By Southwest introduced her to Taylor, with whom she has recorded four full albums and an EP. Her musical development started much earlier, however, and at the hands of an equally seasoned songwriting veteran, her father David Rodriquez. "My dad gave me a Leonard Cohen record for my ninth birthday! I hated it. But of course I rediscovered it at thirteen and loved it." By fifteen Rodriguez and her dad were touring the Netherlands together; chops were being honed.
Rodriguez' maternal side of the family also influenced her musical upbringing. Not only was her mother a fanatical opera enthusiast, her great-aunt, Eva Garza, was a popular Latin recording artist in the 50's, and it was from Garza that Rodriguez first heard 'La Punalada Trapera,' which soon became a mainstay in her live set. Having family friends include Lyle Lovett, who invited Rodriguez to sit in with his band when she was at college, also helped her develop as a performer.
07.17.11 Sharon Little
Paper Doll, the second album by vocalist, songwriter and CBS recording artist Sharon Little, is the artist’s response to a pop culture mindset that seems to require female entertainers to adopt a particular look or behave outrageously in order to gain attention. Blazing her way on an accelerated career path, she went from waiting tables in a Philadelphia coffee shop straight to a debut album and a national tour with Robert Plant, Alison Krauss and T Bone Burnett. Sharon was exposed to many forces pulling at her, offering advice, direction, and often, confusion.
Paper Doll is Sharon’s manifesto that she be judged on what she offers through her music, and not by the outfits she wears or who she’s been dating. She delivers this message through songs that effortlessly fuse pop, rock, R&B, and even a taste of electronic music in a direct, emotionally potent style.
Little’s deep and soulful sound is the product of experience. She says she wasn’t exposed to much pop music growing up in a large blue-collar family: She seldom listened to the radio, and didn’t see a TV until she was 11. She received her first guitar at 16: When her closest childhood friend was killed in a tragic car accident, the girl’s mother gave Little the instrument as a gift. “I found myself channeling the pain and grief I was going through, with my voice and my guitar,” she says. “That’s where my soul was born.”
Thousands of miles and hundreds of gigs later, Sharon Little is making music with a newfound poise that rings clearly in every note of Paper Doll. She says of her journey, “Three years ago, I had never been in any states besides Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Texas, and now, I’ve been to every state in this country except three. I’ve met countless artists who’ve inspired me greatly, and my music has been heard all over TV. I’ve got a lot of people behind me, helping me to achieve my dream to be a true artist, and I hope to show aspiring young artists that they, too, can achieve their dreams without compromising who they really are.”
06.12.11 Lipbone Redding & The LipBone Orchestra
That’s not a trombone you’re hearing...
It’s a human voice. Former subway musician Lipbone Redding revs up the party and makes lots of sounds with only his lips. He not only imitates a trombone, he is an accomplished soloist, songwriter, guitarist and entertainer. He's the Jazz, Blues, Jam and Soul version of a human beat-box ... Make that a “Human Sweet Box.”
Inventive voicestrumentalist and Southern Gentleman, Lipbone Redding, creates original songs that effervesce with New Orleans swing, Memphis grooves and New York City style.
"...Redding himself - who just could be the hottest trombonist around"
- Jim Primock, Colorado Blues Society
After Traveling the world for several years, performing with musical artists from many cultures and with extended visits to South America and India, Lipbone came back to New York. He worked tirelessly to advance his performing career by playing in cafe's, bars and restaurants. He recorded and printed his own CD's and sold thousands of copies. Several months later, he had 4 steady shows a week as a solo artist. It was not long after his return that he met bassist Jeff Eyrich at Mike Williams' "Soho Pickin' Party," a monthly packed house-party featuring new and well-known songwriters. The alchemy between Jeff and Lipbone was instantaneous and within weeks, along with drummer George Mel, they had secured steady gigs as a group at Jules Jazz Bistro, one of New York's hottest downtown jazz night-spot. One night Lipbone and his band performed following famed comedian Joan Rivers at The Cutting Room with drummer, Rich Zukor. The combination was an instant success and The LipBone Orchestra was born. The three haven't looked back since.
05.29.11 Romi Mayes, featuring Jay Nowicki
From the center of Canada, deep in the prairies, comes an unstoppable force that is becoming a household name across the globe: Romi Mayes. Suitably pronounced "Raw Me", Mayes is a straight shooter with heart on your sleeve lyrics, edgy innuendo, and some serious bad ass guitar playing. She writes about sex, drugs, love, and the road. She can be soft and sweet or just down right dirty.
05.01.11 Stephen Kellogg Solo & Low Down Tour
Tift Merritt - opening act.
Many artists talk about “keeping it real,” but in Stephen’s case, he means it. “I think it’s important to go with the feel of each moment and take chances. If that means to get out of synch or sing out of key once in a while, so be it. The crags are cool because they’re interesting.”
"I'm as much a product of Whitesnake as I am of Jackson Browne.” The beauty of Stephen’s music is that he doesn't have a problem with that. Stephen has released four independent records as a solo artist. "I used to play 60 songs a night at this steakhouse. I was supposed to play only covers, but I would slide my own material in by introducing it as 'an old Jefferson Airplane B-side' or something. The Sixers brought me out of that and into the realm of making records and touring the whole country over the course of one great year."
11.21.10 Southern-inspired Thanksgiving Dinner
10.24.10 Beer-inspired Dinner
Two of our key creative Mangoes, Nickolas Illingworth & Jack Ryan, have put together Flying Mango's first strictly Dinner Event! This evening is entirely inspired by outstanding beers.
Bill of Fare:
Reception begins at 5:00.
Complimentary Rye & Rye Cocktail.
Roasted Pumpkin Ale & Jicama Duo Soup with Savory Pumpkin Seed Brittle
& Grill Corn Bread
Beer: Court Avenue Brewery Pumpkin Ale
Smoked Pork Chop Stuffed with a Dried Apricot & Golden Raisin Compote
with Sweet Potato Croquettes & Braised In-Season Greens
Beer: Schneider & Brooklyner Hopfen – Wiesse
Chicory & Coffee infused Chocolate Ganache filled Beignets dusted with
Dried Cherry Powdered Sugar & Sweet Cherry Basil Compote
Beer: Unibrou – Quelque Chose - Kriek & Brown Ale
09.20.10 Lipbone Redding & The LipBone Orchestra
Inventive singer/songwriter/ guitarist / voice-instrumentalist and former subway musician, Lipbone Redding revs up the party and creates original songs that effervesce with New Orleans swing, Memphis grooves and New York City style. Known for his ability to use his vocal to sound exactly like a trombone, it’s hard to tell the difference -- unless you witness the phenomenon live.
Lipbone and his two-man orchestra make for a show greased with uncanny riffs of vocal trumpeting, booming mouth percussion, hilarious side moments and esoteric lyrics.
08.22.10 Alexa Wilkinson & Lelia Broussard 'House Concert'
The last time Alexa was with us, was as a solo opening act for Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers. This time she brings Lelia Broussard along for a much anticipated duo.
Alexa Wilkinson is a singer songwriter based out of NYC. She has toured and shared the stage with Ingrid Michaelson, Josh Kelley, Natasha Beddingfield, Mieka Pauly, Bess Rogers, Vanessa Carlton, Dar Williams, Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers,Rosi Golan, Kate Voegele and many more. She has had various songs from her debut album "Lullaby Appetite" and her sophmore album "Lions" (Produced by Marshall Altman) featured on MTV's "The Hills", CBS's "NCIS: NY" &"Make It or Break It", and many others. She is an active part of JRI's "Share The Beat" event, promoting the importance and awareness of organ donation.
From LELIA: My career in bullet points because bios are boring. - i was an egg, then i was fertilized, then i was born. - first concert, paul simon age 3 the cajun dome in Lafayette Louisiana. cool - Cajun Dome again, age 6, I sang Patsy Cline’s “Crazy” in front of 15,000 people, they cheered, that was cooler - sang incessantly all through childhood, annoyed the crap out of my mother - i once had 15 cats.creepy right? - the first song i wrote was about my orthodontist - recorded my first record in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - moved to new york when i was 17 - waited tables, got fired for yelling at my boss - i've been an under paid full time musician ever since. - started working with magnetic writer and producer rob fusari (of bootylicious and now miz lady gaga fame) - toured extensively throughout the US - signed a publishing deal with Rondor Universal Music Group - moved to Los Angeles, California - met Snoop Dogg (I called him Mr. Dogg) at the Grammy’s (did I say met? I mean I saw him) - wrote wrote wrote - recorded Waiting On The 9 with producer, Dave Trumfio (Wilco, My Morning Jacket, Built to Spill) - Ellen Degeneres follows me on Twitter (it’s a bullet point, Ellen is a big deal!)
08.15.10 Jon Justice Band
The Jon Justice Band returns to Flying Mango. Possessing a soulfulness that belies his age, Justice is constantly exploring musical influences and expanding his repertoire. The "Jon Justice sound" is always pushing outward towards fresh expression, reverberating as it does with Justice's singular take on events of the day and building innovatively on the bedrock of the pioneers that came before him. "Write what you know, play what you feel. That's what I try to bring to the table," Justice says. "I don't know any other way."
06.20.10 Brandi Shearer
Brandi, it seems, is somewhat of a dichotomy. She's a songwriter tagged by critics as a "chanteuse" possessing a "whispery tenderness"...who increasingly travels to dark places in her songs. She's an honest, heart-on-sleeve lyricist with a sly, self-deprecating sense of humor in real life. And she's a rock/folk/jazz musician who's quite a home discussing her love of hip-hop and classical music.
05.02.10 Lipbone Redding & the LipBone Orchestra
Inventive singer/songwriter/ guitarist / voice-instrumentalist and formersubway musician, Lipbone Redding revs up the party and creates original songs that effervesce with New Orleans swing, Memphis grooves and New York City style. Known for his ability to use his vocal to sound exactly like a trombone, it’s hard to tell the difference -- unless you witness the phenomenon live. Lipbone and his two-man orchestra make for a show greased with uncanny riffs of vocal trumpeting, booming mouth percussion, hilarious side moments and esoteric lyrics.
03.22.10 Romi Mayes Band
IF SOMEHOW RAY CHARLES, KEITH RICHARDS AND JOAN JETT COULD HAVE A LOVE CHILD, IT’D BE ROMIMAYES.
02.21.10 Seth Walker
"A different point of blue" - an apt description for an artist whose songs, driving delivery and infectious down-home style resonates with the emotions, beauty, power and simplicity that plays such an integral role in the appeal of traditional Roots, Blues and Americana music.
Creative Loafing wrote, Seth Walker is a splendid mix of roots styles: blues, soul and Americana, featuring deep-fried guitar licks, churchy organ and crisp horns, mostly delivered over spot-on shuffles.
Westword declared, Seth Walker serves Southern roots guit-pickin and blues songcraft with ease and grace. Echoing a variety of artists, from Jimmy Reed to Ray Charles, he slips expertly from loose-jointed shuffles to organ-inflected feel-good fare and a whole lot more. An old soul with new fingers, Walker cooks from start to finish.
12.27.09 David Ducharme-Jones with Rod Chaffee
Blues with a Twist
Together again...for the very first time.
11.02.09 Jonah Smith
Flying Mango loves Jonah Smith for writing the catchy new jingle you hear as our site loads. He wrote this little ditty following his last performance. Let's Go, Let's Go........
This performance accompanied by drummer, Gintas J.
08.03.09 Jon Justice Band
For those of you that haven't met Jon and his band yet, we're including some bio information. You can listen on Jon's site, or link to his YouTube videos to get a taste. Suffice it to say, Mike refers to Jon as his 'red-headed stepchild'.
06.29.09 Corey Wedeking Band
Thanks for the show!
We have a special THANKS to Corey Wedeking and his band for stepping up and entertaining us the evening of the Lindell concert. They went from filling opening act time-slots to engaging us all evening. We told the audience when we invited them for the evening, that when you have lemons...well, you know, the lemonade thing. After the show, we had many comments on the great 'lemonade'. Thanks guys!
A SPECIAL Thanks to our great friend, Rod Chaffee, for the time jammin with the band. That was a great treat for Mike and Suzanne. We will post some YouTube of the evening very soon. Look for it on the FlyingMangoMusic channel on YouTube.
Corey's band members include: Rohan Arora (guitar), Jon Dixit (bass), Dan Comerchero (drums), Patrick Vogl (keyboard), and Himes Alexander (back up vocal). Make note of these names as you surely will hear more from each of them. They all hail from the McNally Smith College of Music in Saint Paul, MN.
04.06.09 Carrie Rodriguez with Hans Holzen
02.23.09 Jonah Smith with Doug Wamble
08.24.08 Hamilton Loomis
The Jon Justice Band
Another Pretentious Redneck Dinner
The band was touring to promote their latest CD, The Rebound.
Opening act: Mango Shy.
Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers,
supported by Alexa Wilkinson
Another Pretentious Redneck Dinner
This is one of our favorite bands. Suzanne ran across them online looking at venue websites from far away places. Stephen's clips caught her attention and she ordered the CD right then. Since that time, Corey's performed a favorite written by Stephen and we've caught Sixer shows at The M-Shop, Peoples and at the Varsity Theater in Minneapolis (a great venue if you've never been).
There is awesome song-writing talent here, and a band that obviously enjoys what they are doing. The Sixers are probably better known with the college crowds, so our regulars may not have heard of them yet. That will be changing. Take this opportunity to enjoy another up-close-and-personal music event with us. You won't see them in a setting like this often.
Jason Walsmith & Mike Butterworth of The Nadas
Rib & Rye Night
Jon Justice Band
Redneck New Year's Eve Bash
Jon has a whole new band since his last event, and they've won the Cincinnati Blues Challenge. That earned them a slot at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis!
Romi calls Mike the Mayor of Des Moines. There's a great story about how this crazy Canadian wound up dining at Flying Mango. To hear her sing what she's written will move you. She's also got the best T-shirts: "Our apologies...Romi Mayes Cancelled Too Drunk To Play" and her latest "Mama Raised Me, but Romi Mayes'd Me!"
Mango Music Night
Romi Mayes' sound is also the sort that folks just can't seem to get enough of. Quoted as being one of the hardest working independent musicians in Canada, in the past two years alone, she has toured well over 400 dates to acclaimed festivals, packed theatres, dance halls, bars, pubs, cafes, and living rooms across North America. Her last two Americana/roots enriched albums "Living Room Sessions" (2005) and latest "Sweet Somethin' Steady" (Gurf Morlix, 2006) have been nominated for various prestigious music awards. Both of Mayes' albums have charted on radio stations worldwide landing on a plethora of "Best of" top year picks.
"She sings like an angel. Looks like a goddess. Writes beautiful songs about rebellion, submission and the Bible. And as my friend Gurf Morlix says - She races trains. What else could you ask for?" -Sam Baker
Another Pretentious Redneck Dinner
California-born, New Orleans-schooled singer/songwriter/vocalist Eric Lindell is a roots rocker with dozens of original songs that combine soul-shaking rhythm & blues, reggae grooves, swamp pop and blues. Lindell is a fan favorite in his northern California turf and his adopted home of New Orleans (where he was feature on the cover of OffBeat magazine and performed on the main stage at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival). He is accomplished on guitar, harmonica, keyboards and bass, and has performed with some of the Crescent City's top musicians as well as some of the jam band community's biggest names (including members of Galactic). The winner of the 1999 John Lennon Songwriting Competition for his song, Kelly Ann, Lindell is now ready to bring his rough-hewn voice and memorable original songs to the rest of the music-loving world with the release of his Aliigator Records debut, Change In The Weather.
"Stellar, sublime blue-eyed soul and romping New Orleans R&B, played at the same intersection of soul, blues and roots rock as Van Morrison."
--New Orleans Times Picayune
Mango Music Night
Hamilton Loomis took his mentor, Bo Diddley's advice. It speaks volumes when the likes of Diddley, Johnny "Clyde" Copeland, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, and Albert Collins take you under their wings. The twenty-something Texas sensation isn't just another cat-in-a-hat with a Strat. He has crafted his blues roots into a funk-a-fied recipe all his own.
Mango Music Night
Another Pretentious Redneck Dinner
Eric and the band have become great friends of ours. Last time through Des Moines, they ate dinner with us at our home. They were a bit perplexed with the meal though...just couldn't identify this mysterious green edible at the table. Yea guys, that's a mixed green salad. Oh, life on the road.
Born in 1969, Lindell is an "old soul" from California reinventing New Orleans R&B. He has a cool, genuine old school aura that is both natural and refreshing. Eric does his own thing in his own way and at his own pace. His melodic sensibility and fresh approach are most impressive.
Our FIRST Pretentious Redneck Dinner
Jon's like family. On his first meeting with Mike and our son, Corey, he allowed Corey to sing with him and gave him one of his guitars. Jon is a great talent, amazing guitarist, and awesome songwriter. He also put on a fantastic show for our employee appreciation party.
"The kid can flat-out play!" -- Buddy Guy, legendary blues and rock guitarist