In December of 2017, a big blown was dealt to rock fans everywhere with the passing of Smithereens founder and lead singer Pat DiNizio. While Smithereens fans were, and are, deeply saddened by Pat's passing they also overwhelmingly wanted the band to continue. Fast-forward to today, with the remaining original members of The Smithereens: Jim Babjak, Dennis Diken, and Mike Mesaros currently out on tour with singer-songwriter Marshall Crenshaw, who is sitting in as the band’s guest vocalist.
I caught up with the singer prior to the band's stop in Rhode Island
Tony Jones: What can folks who attend the upcoming gig expect, as far as material, is it strictly Smithereens tunes?
Marshall Crenshaw: Yes, Smithereens Only. I do my stuff at my shows; this is their show. It’s fun for me to play in their band..
Tony Jones: Your association with The Smithereens goes way back, tell us about that?
Marshall Crenshaw: I have known the guys since forever, played a little bit on their first album. At Pat’s memorial back in January it felt like a giant family-reunion. I sat in with the band for 3 songs that night; a little while after that they reached out to me about doing what we’re doing now.
Tony Jones: Are there any plans for you to record new music with The Smithereens?
Marshall Crenshaw: Not that I know of.
Tony Jones: What keeps bringing you back to touring?
Marshall Crenshaw: Playing music keeps my spirit intact. God knows what I would turn into if I stopped doing it. Maybe I will stop sometime but I’m not there yet.
Tony Jones: How do you prepare for a tour?
Marshall Crenshaw: I don’t always prepare, actually. Sometimes I just show up at the first gig and wing it from there..
Tony Jones: You and I both share a passion for independent radio, is there any chance that The Bottomless Pit will someday return to the airwaves?
Marshall Crenshaw: Ah, thanks for asking. The show went on hiatus in January so I could focus on a film production that I decided to attempt. Once I’ve completed that (unless I die trying), I’d like to do the show again, probably will.
Tony Jones: What advice would you give to new and up-and-coming bands and musicians?
Marshall Crenshaw: Be yourself.
The Smithereens tour hits Rhode Island on Saturday, November 17th at The Greenwich Odeum. Tickets are available at: http://www.greenwichodeum.com/
Donations to the Pat DiNizio Scholarship fund can made online at: http://www.countbasietheatre.org/commemorative-giving/ (Select “Pat DiNizio Musical Performance Scholarship” in the drop-down menu)
The Tony Jones Show #200 - With music from: The Texas Gentlemen, The Limit Club, The Safes, Midnight Creeps, The Charms, Deer Tick, Candy Ambulance, The McGunks, Michale Graves, and Osaka Popstar
With his former project Blitzkid disbanding in 2012, Argyle Goolsby has been pursuing his solo career at a break-neck speed. He currently performs with both his acoustic band, The Hollow Bodies and a live electric band, The Roving Midnight. 'Darken Your Doorstep', his latest release, came out this past June.
Tony Jones: Tell us about the current tour, what can those who attend your upcoming gig expect?
Argyle Goolsby: This will be a one off for us. We have some European dates and festivals starting next month in Germany and Russia though. People can expect a good show from us live. Lots of energy and a one of a kind stage set.
Tony Jones: Tell as a little bit about 'Darken Your Doorstep'
Argyle Goolsby: It's my newest album that just came out this past June. 17 songs of energetic and melodic punk rock in the vein of Bad Religion, The Damned and Misfits. You can check it out at: www.argylegoolsby.com/downloads
Tony Jones: With the Roving Midnight, you have assembled a bit of a horror punk "super group" tell us about getting those musicians to back you up?
Argyle Goolsby: I've set the band up in a way that different people can occupy it at different times. Touring is based on peoples availability. People can't always go out on tour. This way I can always go on tour, and the best part for me is I get to play live with a lot of different friends, and for the fans they get to see a lot of people from their favorite bands on stage with me. The sound is always fresh too, because each lineup sounds different.
Tony Jones: What keeps bringing you back to touring?
Argyle Goolsby: A self destructive nature I guess ha ha. I love playing music live. It's nothing til it's live.
Tony Jones: Do you have a favorite place to tour?
Argyle Goolsby: No, I love playing anywhere people are into it.
Tony Jones: Did you expect all the support you’ve received throughout the years when you first started?
Argyle Goolsby: No. When I started I just wanted to have a way to get my ideas expressed. It was more of a personal thing, always has been, but in time people pick up on what you're doing and identify with it, which is cool. From that point you start getting support from those people, which is awesome. It's definitely motivating.
Tony Jones: Do you have any musical influences that people might be surprised by?
Argyle Goolsby: Michael Jackson.
Tony Jones: What does the future hold for Argyle Goolsby?
Argyle Goolsby: No clue, but I'll be there to do it.
Argyle Goolsby & The Roving Midnight bring the tour to The Cove Music Hall in Worcester, MA on Friday August 18th along side The Koffin Kats, The Evil Streaks and Tony Jones & The Cretin 3, tickets are available at www.thecovemusichall.com
As a true road warrior of punk rock, Michale Graves has kept extremely busy since his time as vocalist for legendary horror-punk band The Misfits. In fact, he's back out on the road with a new tour that will bring him to Providence's own Firehouse 13 on Friday, April 28th
Tony Jones: For those who haven't had a chance to catch Michale Graves live, what can people expect at your upcoming gig?
Michale Graves: The performance that we have planned in Providence will be in support of my current 'Backroads' CD. We released our new CD 'Backroads' about two months ago at the beginning of the tour and I have committed each of the 55 performances on this tour to feature the songs from the new CD. This CD is a continuation of the voice that we created in the 'Vagabond' acoustic album and then later followed up on 'The Wanderer' acoustic album. This is very different from my monster rock voice and I really perform these new songs any unique and I hope entertaining way.
Tony Jones: You seem to always be on the road, what keeps bringing you back to touring
Michale Graves: Everything that we do is centered around people. The fans and the time I have to spend with them on the road is why I tour so much. This album, Backroads, is all about my life on the road touring especially in this acoustic voice. So the bottom line is what keeps me on the road? I need to touch and interact live with our fans.
Tony Jones: Do you prefer being out with the full band or doing solo acoustic?
Michale Graves: That's like saying which one of my two children do I love the most. Why I'm so excited about both the full band and the acoustic is it allows me to stretch artistically in several different ways. Full band events are more kinetic and action driven. Acoustic shows are much more personal. So I have the good fortune to be able to perform in both formats and that keeps me a balanced performer.
Tony Jones: How do you prepare for a tour?
Michale Graves: You know, I prepare for a tour in the same way that an athlete prepares for tournament. I spend a lot of time on cardio and getting my body in shape, eating the right things and keeping my brain and body healthy. I also try to get a lot of rest before a tour because, I will tell you that one thing, a tour is not full of sleep.
Tony Jones: With all the years of touring, do you have a favorite gig/festival that you've played? Or a particularly memorable one?
Michale Graves: Well, I'll answer this the way an old friend of mine answered, to simplify the question, my favorite one is the one we are about to do. That way I can say that every single day I perform, and by the way, it's true.
Tony Jones: You have had great success crowd-funding different projects, tell us about being able to connect with the fans in that manner.
Michale Graves: Yes, we have for years involved the fans in crowd-funding projects. It's a way that we can announce and market our projects way in advance of them being done and it's the way that we can reach out to new fans as the crowd-funding sites have a community of their own.
Tony Jones: What is in the pipeline for Michale Graves, what are the next projects you are working on?
Michale Graves: Well Tony, you know Mark Allen Stuart, CEO of Hydraulic entertainment. Mark always has about 48 different projects up his sleeve at any one time. Because the release of the 'Backroads' acoustic album was so successful, as a matter of fact, almost sold out, we've decided, and I'll give you an exclusive here, we've decided to create a full band version of the album as well, so we should be heading into the studio early in the summer to make that happen. We also have another monster rock project in the works, as well as an October Halloween tour. Also, Mark is working on a feature film based on our songs from the 'When Worlds Collide' album to be entitled '3 Days till Dawn' and we're trying to get the production of that film in this calendar year as well. Mark also has us working on a re-release of another project, that unfortunately I can't announce today, but it should be coming at you in a few weeks.
Tony Jones: Any chances of a return to doing radio on the regular basis with the Michale Graves Show or Radio Deadly
Graves : You know, I would love to have the radio show, but given the fact that I'm on tour over a hundred and fifty days a year, it makes doing a consistent radio show very very difficult. We've tried to do it while on the road and that just doesn't work, on for a month, off for two months, really doesn't create the consistency or sustainability that we really want. But we love the medium and we're trying to figure out ways that we can make a show happen.
Tony Jones: A message to all the young bands out there?
Michale Graves: I think the best advice I can give is to forget doing cover songs. Find your own voice. It's natural that every artist has inspirations, I, for one, had a ton of bands and artists that inspired me when I first started out, and still inspire me today. One of the things that I know is, if you're really trying to make a go at it at performing as a profession, or quite frankly, if you're just trying to get better as an artist, find your own voice, find your own uniqueness, and ways to exploit your own talent and in that you'll have a better chance of creating some magic.
Michale Graves brings his 'Backroads' tour to Firehouse 13 on Friday, April 28th with local openers Damnation, The Skeleton Beats, Deprived and Wolfman Chuck. Doors are at 8pm, $12 cover. Check out http://fh13.com for details
ICYMI: Michale Graves joined us on the line for The Tony Jones Show a few years back, while we were on the AM dial
Knee High Fox is an alternative/rock/electronic band based out of Los Angeles that formed in 2012.The band is fronted by Krsy Fox, with Simon Nagel on bass, Eric Bickerstaffe on guitar, and Oscar Silva on drums. Knee High Fox is known for their sexy horror-esque music videos which often go viral on social media. Currently out on a national tour, there is a lot ahead for Knee High Fox.
Tony Jones: For those of us who haven't had a chance to catch Knee High Fox live, what can people who attend your upcoming gig expect?
Krsy Fox: We are a band that writes music always thinking about the live experience and the visuals that go with it. We always hear people say you have to see our band live. Our songs are very diverse and take you on a journey, kind of like a roller coaster of emotions (in our case a crazy females). A lot of people can relate to the mood swings of the show, haha.
Tony Jones: Tell us about the name Knee High Fox, where did it come from?
Krsy Fox: It was kind of something that just happened. It popped in my head one day and it just felt like that's the name. It describes the look and feel of us. We had a bunch of music already written before we had a band name.
Tony Jones: What was it like coming up in the Los Angeles music scene?
Krsy Fox: It was actually amazing. You can really build a foundation there. We got to do a couple residencies early on that we're very successful and got our name out there quickly. LA still has a strong music scene and I'm so glad we had the opportunity to start there.
Tony Jones: You had great success crowd-funding the album 'Obey the Cross', tell us about being able to connect with fans in that manner.
Krsy Fox: Our fans have been so incredible to us. They have been so dedicated and it's almost like a little cult family at this point. When you have a fan base like we do you start even writing the music with them always on our mind. A band is nothing without that kind of support and we owe our whole career to the people who have joined us along the way. They're the reason we can make and release the music and they're the people who make us feel like we belong.
Tony Jones: Knee High Fox is very well know for their music videos, how did that side of what you do as a band come about?
Krsy Fox: When I started the band the visuals to me are almost as important as the music. The bands and music that have inspired me were always very visual and had a strong sense of self and image. There aren't a lot of real rockstars left out there and now with the Internet and social media there's so much out there and available. When we release stuff from our band we always wanted to be very in control of our videos and images. We wanted people to see and hear our music the way we do and being in control and shooting directing and editing your own videos is a great way to put out something you truly are proud of. Plus shooting these crazy ass videos is fuckin' a blast!
Tony Jones: Are there any new videos in the pipeline?
Krsy Fox: Yes actually we have recorded a brand new EP we are doing a series called Highs And Lows which with be 2 songs at a time that will definitely represent the EP's title. The first 2 are songs called 'Paranoia MF' and 'Playground'. We are playing both live on this current Set To Stun tour and will be shooting new videos for both. Possibly with some live footage from the shows.
Tony Jones: How do you prepare for tour?
Krsy Fox: We rehearse a lot, were a band that still really enjoys getting in a room and jamming together even after all the time and tours we've done. It's also putting together the set and stage look which we always try to give people something new and fresh as well as playing the new songs!
Tony Jones: What does Knee High Fox have planned next?
Krsy Fox: As of now we're on the road doing the Set To Stun tour with Powerman 5000, Orgy, and Death Valley High into February. It's been a blast so far. All great guys and we don't have more than a couple days off so we're putting everything into that. Then once we get home it will be back to recording and shooting some videos, releasing Highs and Lows Pt 1 and then planning the next tour. We would live on the road if we could! Haha
Knee High Fox brings their pop rock chorus's to Fete music hall in the historic Olneyville section of Providence on January 14th for Freakfest 8, tickets are available online at http://fetemusic.com/
With his relentless work ethic, punk rock icon Henry Rollins always seems to be moving forward, and never looking back. Far from your run of the mill “rock star”, Rollins has released 17 spoken word albums and has written a dozen or so books. He has also added radio to his ever growing Résumé.
It's often been said that music keeps you young; Rollins is living proof.
Tony Jones: Without giving away too much, what can folks who attend your upcoming gig expect?
Henry Rollins: I will be talking about travels I have made since the last tour, experiences in the entertainment business and other stories. All of my shows tour to tour are somewhat the same as they are informed by travel and what has happened since the last time I was on tour.
Tony Jones: What keeps bringing you back to doing spoken word and touring with it?
Henry Rollins: It’s a format I think works well with how I live and I can change material quickly, without band practice or asking other people. It travels very easily. There is no production really and I bring my own mic.
Tony Jones: How do you prepare the material for the tour?
Henry Rollins: I work through ideas, see if there is a story in the information I have. I can’t go onstage and give the audience mere reportage, that doesn’t take much work. I try to find the story in the information. This often takes a long time, so I continually go through my journals, notes, photographs, to try to get an understanding of what I have seen.
Tony Jones: Is there a lot of spontaneity in the live performance?
Henry Rollins: Not a great deal, no. I try to be very prepared. I don’t want to go sideways. I am sure that many performers like to go out and wing it. I don’t have that skill. Preparation is what works for me.
Tony Jones: How does being "angry" play into your spoken word?
Henry Rollins: It informs my “curiosity.”
Tony Jones: What kind of audience are you seeing at gigs? Is it mostly "old punks" or a mix of demographics?
Henry Rollins: It seems to be teenage to my age. It’s surprisingly diverse. More than the music audiences ever were.
Tony Jones: Regarding your radio show, how do you decide on the playlist?
Henry Rollins: The playlist is determined by several factors. New and old, way out there, etc. I try to keep it interesting, somewhat challenging but not off-putting. I have been doing radio for over a decade and have learned a lot. I put a lot of work into those shows. To me, it’s always worth it.
Tony Jones: What does the future hold for Henry Rollins?
Henry Rollins: Hopefully, next year, I get some Hollywood work. I have two books ready to edit, so I will try to get them done.
The Henry Rollins spoken word tour will bring his poignant and amusing experiences and world views to The Met in Pawtucket, RI on November 1, 2016 @ 9:00 PM.
General admission tickets are $25 and can be purchased online at themetri.com
This coming fall you and I (and every person in all 50 states and Washington DC) will have the opportunity to vote for Gary Johnson in our state and as such I think that it's very important that we get a chance to see him in the nation debates along with the Republican and Democrat candidate.
Currently the Congressional Debate Commission is using a standard of being over 15% in the polls, but that is a very flawed metric. The question that is asked is "If the election were held today, who would you vote for?"
That question is DESIGNED to not have people answer "I don't know yet" and it punishes any "new" candidate if their party does not have an established base of voters who always vote the party ticket. The question is designed to not allow people to answer "I want to know more about them and make an informed decision." Why is asking people who they would vote for RIGHT THIS SECOND considered a good way to determine who should be in the debates to inform the public? Why is the poll question trying remove the influence of the people who want to make an informed decision BASED on the debates.
Similarly, if 100 people are polled and 10 of them respond that they don't know who they are voting for yet, those votes are not counted as supporting Gary Johnson specifically, even those people have specifically said they are not convinced to vote for the Republican or the Democrat.
The polls should not be asking people who they would vote for. The poll question that determines who should be in the debates should read as follow: "The following candidates will be on the ballot for President in your state. Please indicate all of them that you would like to see in the debate." It's very simple -- if a poll is being used to determine who is in the debates, that poll should ask about the debates.
When that question is asked, 76% of Americans respond that they would like to see Gary Johnson in the debate.
Count me among that 76%.
Tony Jones is the Libertarian Candidate for North Kingstown Town Council and the RI State Director for Johnson/Weld 2016
Pledging to repeal ordinances that require unnecessary permits and licenses, Wickford resident Tony Jones today announced his candidacy for the North Kingstown Town Council. Jones will run as a member of Libertarian Party.
“I want to make the town as business-friendly as possible, and that means looking at existing town ordinances with an eye toward repealing the ones that impose unnecessary burdens, permits and licenses,” Jones said.
In addition to cutting bureaucratic red tape, Jones says his priority is to improve communication between elected officials and residents. “When taxpayers voice their concerns and ideas, they deserve to know they are being heard and represented. I am committed to better constituent services than we are currently getting.”
As a community service advocate, Jones said he also wants to help develop a good volunteer base for the town, as well as promote North Kingstown as an arts, culture, and food destination.
A lifelong Rhode Islander, Jones is a realtor. A former operations supervisor with General Dynamics Electric Boat Corporation, Jones is also proprietor of Tony Jones Omnimedia and founder, creative director, and on-air host of the non-profit RI Free Radio. Tony is a graduate of C.C.R.I. in new media communications and is currently attending American Public University
Tony Jones is a member of the North Kingstown Arts Council, and the Mount Vernon Lodge No.4 Free and Accepted Masons. The state committee member at-large for the Libertarian Party of Rhode Island, Jones ran for Lieutenant Governor in 2014. He is currently the state director for the Gary Johnson 2016 presidential campaign.
PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND (May 30, 2016) – On the heels of the Libertarian Party's selection of former governor of New Mexico Gary Johnson and former governor of Massachusetts William Weld to the presidential ticket at its convention this weekend, North Kingstown resident Tony Jones steps up as the state director for Johnson | Weld 2016 for Rhode Island.
Jones is the at-large member of the executive committee of the Libertarian Party of Rhode Island (LPRI) and a state delegate to the national convention – which saw the largest attendance in the party's history. Under the Libertarian banner, Jones also ran for Lieutenant Governor of Rhode Island in 2014, on the platform to eliminate the office.
The LPRI will become a state recognized party if the ticket receives at least five percent of votes. A recent national poll has Johnson receiving 10 percent of support from registered voters, drawing his strongest support from respondents under 35. Another national poll showed 44 percent of registered voters would want a third party to run against Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump and the likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
The Libertarian Party is the only third party with ballot access in 50 states. This means Johnson will be the only alternative to Trump and Clinton available to all voters in this election.
Libertarians represent a growing plurality of Americans who are neither “left” nor “right” but who lean libertarian on issues of preserving individual rights and Constitutional liberties, smaller government, limited foreign intervention, and balancing the federal budget.
To volunteer for the Johnson | Weld 2016 campaign, or for more information about the Libertarian Party of RI, Rhode Islanders should call 401-206-9194 or email Tony Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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