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SUPERSTAR DREAMS?
Ain't too proud to beg. (1/27a)
BLITZ LIST
Burrowing into trending industry topics (1/27a)
RIHANNA, GAGA LEAD OSCAR SONG NOMS
David Byrne and Diane Warren have noms as well. (1/24a)
HIPGNOSIS NABS
BIEBER CATALOG
Merck's a belieber. (1/25a)
HITS' BLACK HISTORY MONTH SPECIAL: NOT EVERY WOMAN, BUT SEVERAL
Sisters doin' it for themselves (1/24a)
HIP-HOP AT 50
The astonishing first half-century of a world-rocking genre.
THE NEXT BIG PLAYER
in the catalog game is...
INDIE BREAKOUTS
More independent music rises at the DSPs.
THE GOP CONGRESS
At last, America can focus 24/7 on Hunter Biden's laptop.
THE B-SIDE
MAMA (BEAR) KNOWS BEST
10/8/15

Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear transformed The Troubadour into a listening room as they took us back in time with songs about Jim Crow, Mississippi and silent movies. When asked how they establish an intimate feeling in venues that are normally rowdy, Ruth Ward explained that she likes to “bring the audience into [their] world by just envisioning [her]self singing to them in [her] dining room while they're all sitting around, sharing music.” If only Glassnote would let me borrow them for a truly private performance, so I could snuggle under my covers as I enjoy their autumnal encore… A girl can dream.

Inspired by living legend Jack White and singer-songwriters Elliott Smith, Nick Drake, Joni Mitchell, Janice Ian and more, their music ranges from old school, nostalgic folk tunes to heart-wrenching southern blues. Standouts included fan favorite “Dead Daffodils,” off of their debut album, Skeleton Crew, and a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams”; the latter is so beautiful, it may even rival the original.

Their stripped-down set was a refreshing break from the overproduced tracks recently inundating the radio waves. In an interview with HITS earlier this year, Daniel Glass said, “I think you’re going to hear a lot of bands like Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear coming up, with this organic, folkie sound." Let's hope he's right.

The Troubadour's audience sang along, holding their hands over their hearts as though they were pledging allegiance to the Kansas City natives. Be sure to catch them on their U.S. tour, which includes their recently announced set at Stagecoach.

L'chaim,
Naomi Robin