Show in Salt Lake City, Friday April 6th @ Alchemy Coffee

I’ll be playing a special Solo-Acoustic show in Salt Lake City on Friday April 6th at Alchemy Coffee.  Special guests Jay William Henderson & Kettle Black will be playing sets as well. Music starts at 7pm.  It’s a free show so come on out and enjoy some music.  If the weather’s nice we’re gonna move it outside.

Alchemy Coffee is at 1700 South 400 East

"Songs From Church Avenue" (new album) Now Available…

This past summer, my good friend Kara Suzanne & I were asked to participate in The 78 Project.  We performed our own version of the murder ballad “Omie Wise,” recorded straight to a 78RPM acetate via a vintage Presto-Direct-to-Disc machine (the same kind famed folk music collector Alan Lomax used to use in field recordings). 

"Omie Wise" is a classic murder ballad about a ne’er-do-well young man who lures Omie Wise with promises of marriage and then drowns her in a river.  Yes, it’s dark matter for song, but remember, folks in the early 20th century didn’t have a tabloid press to spread the sordid details of crimes.  Folk music was how these stories were spread. 

For our version, we re-worked the lyrics of “Omie Wise” so that the original story is integrated with a more modern and familiar murder trial from the 90s that involved a White Bronco.  If that hint didn’t uncover the secret you’ll just have to click on the link and listen to the words to figure out just WHO we’re singing about.

Aaand one more…from Wilmington, NC

‘Goodnight Irene’: A musical response to the storm

The Reverend John DeLore, a fantastic singer-songwriter who performed at the Juggling Gypsy a while back, was in his Brooklyn apartment settling in for the storm on Saturday with his girlfriend. As spins of the original Lead Belly version of “Goodnight Irene” played over and over on television DeLore, on advice from his girlfriend, wrote his own lyrics for the song to accommodate the current situation.

DeLore then recorded an acoustic track of him singing and playing and sent the mp3 out to about 30 musician friends. He invited them to play and sing along and then e-mail DeLore their tracks. By midnight DeLore says he had tracks from 17 other musicians, mostly from NYC and a few from Nashville and Los Angeles. All told, the song resulted in a 20-member band and choir.

You can hear or download DeLore’s version of “Goodnight Irene” here.

Or you can watch footage of NYC during the storm with the song playing:

"Good Night Irene" Blog post on

A little more coverage of the weekend’s musical effort.  Dave Bry, writing for had posted “23 Versions of What is Likely to Be the Last Song You’ll Ever Hear,” with all the various versions of “Good Night, Irene.”  This post spurred me & my cohorts on to provide Version #24.

I sent the final version to Dave the next day & he posted it on The Awl, along with a video that he found on Youtube where someone had set their NYC Hurricane footage to our rendition.  I especially love the hockey game in Times Square.  It’s hard to tell if there’s even a puck or if people are just running into each other.

Interview on Soundcheck today…

I’m happy to report that our homespun, remotely-assembled, 20-person rendition of “Good Night Irene” has been getting around the web & blogosphere.  (see previous post for more details).  Some folks over at WNYC caught wind of the recording & I did a short radio interview today on Soundcheck. 

Free Download — Rev John DeLore & Friends, “Good Night, Irene: NYC 2011”

CHECK IT OUT!  An original rendition of the classic “Good Night, Irene,” performed by 20 different musicians in NYC on the night of the Hurricane.  I sent out the original mp3 of just me and my acoustic, and then everyone sent me their parts via email and I put the mix together in my room.  ENJOY! (and if you’re on the East Coast: STAY SAFE!)

   “Conceived, recorded & produced within a 10-hour span on Saturday, August 28, 2011. All the tracks on this song were recorded by 19 different individuals, in different rooms all across the 5 boroughs, as we sat waiting for Hurricane Irene to arrive over NYC.

    “I tweaked the lyrics of this classic Leadbelly song to fit the Big Apple, recorded a solo-acoustic version around 3pm, and then sent it out to a number of my talented musician friends. They recorded their individual parts, emailed them back to me, and I put the mix together.

    “As I write this, it’s 2:03am, and I’m going to go sit down and have a beer on my stoop, and say, “Good Night, Irene.”

    “Thanks to everyone who contributed their energy to making this song happen, and here’s to Irene: have mercy on our fair city.”

    Onward, Upward…
    —Rev. John DeLore

    p.s. Thanks for not knocking the electricity out while we were putting this together.


    On Saturday night, she got angry.
    She stormed up the Long Island Sound.
    But still she had some tears to shed
    So she headed for New York town.

    Irene, good night. Irene, good night.
    Good night, Irene. Good night, Irene.
    I’ll see you in my dreams.

    My baby lives in Manhattan,
    But the trains are all shut down.
    I’d swim across the East River.
    But I fear that I might drown.

    Irene, good night. Irene, good night.
    Good night, Irene. Good night, Irene.
    I’ll see you in my dreams.

    Irene she rides the Cyclone,
    She cries on Jersey shore awhile
    She stops to play in Far Rockaway,
    And dances on Staten Isle.

    Irene, good night. Irene, good night.
    Good night, Irene. Good night, Irene.
    I’ll see you in my dreams.

    Stop your rumbling, stop your cryin’
    Stop your thunder don’t turn out the lights.
    Go to sleep out on the Ocean
    Can’t you hear us sing, Good Night.

    Oh, Irene, good night. Irene, good night.
    Good night, Irene. Good night, Irene.
    I’ll see you in my dreams.

"Little John" Review: Aural Fitness

Posted June 10th of this year, a friend just sent me the link to this nice write-up of “Little John the Conqueror.”  Many thanks, Mr. Aural Fitness.  My favorite line? The music has “enough pain to pull it out of the mainstream.” 



I originally thought that my favorite music blog, Berkeley Place, turned me on to The Reverend John Delore, but I’m 100% wrong. Ekko, in his infinite wisdom, did not direct me to this artist, nor can I remember why I originally decided to pick up “Ode to an American Urn,” RJD’s debut album. At any rate, it’s a great album, and left me wishing for more.

Fortunately, The Reverend John Delore delivered with a new album this week, entitled “Little John the Conqueror.” It is a similar vein of country/southern-infused rock, with enough pain to pull it out of the mainstream. Contrary to my usual standards of painful, slow and depressing country & folk music, both albums contain solid pop hooks - albeit combined with some of the pain I expect from a good country-ish artist (see Delore’s cover of “Iodine” off “American Urn” or “When I Think of Home” on “Little John”) - but don’t skimp on a upbeat summertime feeling either (do I sense some Elvis Costello influence in “Wayside?”). You can rock out to this all summer in your backyard.

AND since it’s on Bandcamp, you can download it RIGHT NOW in any format you want AND listen to it for free in its entirety. There is also the limited edition vinyl record album, which I will likely jump on after my next paycheck.

So, if you like what I’ve written, go to RJD’s Bandcamp page and give it a listen, and perhaps a download. He deserves it. You deserve it.


CMJ Show Announced: Rev.John DeLore, The Living Room, Wed 10/19/11 

Presented by the Deli Magazine and the Living Room, Wed. 10/19/11, as part of New York’s CMJ Music Marathon, a night of Americana Roots and Rock:

The Reverend John Delore
Ursa Minor
Shenandoah & The Night
Union Street Preservation Society.