One Man Gang was a popular bad guy in the wrestling world in the 1980s. Fortunately (or unfortunately if you're a fan of men in tights from the Teddy Ruxpin era) he has nothing to do with today's "A-Sides." The grappler's moniker, however, resonates in that both artists featured here are one-man shows. Chris Carrabba has spent the better part of this year touring to celebrate the 10th anniversary of his debut Dashboard Confessional album The Swiss Army Romance. He recently wrapped up a brief series of acoustic shows in the Midwest and on the East Coast in connection to his first-ever solo effort, Covered In The Flood, which finds the singer/songwriter covering a wide range of artists he respects from R.E.M. to The Replacements.
Like Carraba, and I mean no offense to his Dashboard bandmates, Mike Doughty is a one man gang of musical talent (geez, did I really just say that?) The former Soul Coughing member is a celebrated singer, songwriter, author and poet. He's currently touring in support of his fifth solo album Yes and Also Yes, and in early 2012 will release a memoir about his drug and music battles called The Book of Drugs.
In New York City earlier this month, I caught up with Carrabba and Doughty for "A-Sides." Both performed songs off their respective new albums, and discussed their meanings. Watch, listen, and enjoy.
Chris Carrabba Plays and Discusses "Tall Green Grass" (Cory Branan cover)
Chris Carrabba Plays "The Cape" (Guy Clark cover) and Talks About It
Mike Doughty Plays and Discusses "Na Na Nothing"
Mike Doughty Plays "Day By Day By" and Talks About It
About "A-Sides with Jon Chattman"
Jon Chattman's music series features artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometime humorous) way. No bells, no whistles -- just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, I'm hoping this is refreshing.