Articles By: Jim Simpson

Jim Simpson, Awaiting the Flood's editor-at-large, is a music critic and award-winning fiction writer. A native of the wilds of Florida's Gulf Coast, he now resides on the scruffy outskirts of Atlanta, Georgia. His musical taste spans all genres: Bluegrass, Americana, Classic Country, Alt-Country, Western Swing, Blues, Classical, Rock 'n' Roll, Punk, Reggae, Klezmer, and British Isles Folk (to name but a few). He once sang Happy Birthday (with about 10,000 other people) to Joni Mitchell, and has seen such legends as Miles Davis, The Incredible Jimmy Smith, Rockpile, Iggy Pop, David Bowie, R.E.M., Blue Rodeo, King Sunny Ade, Elvis Costello and Bob Dylan live in concert. Jim is a former staff writer for Country Music Pride, a book and music reviewer for Hellbomb and Atlanta Music Guide, occasionally contributes essays to the international writers collective TheNervousBreakdown.com, and has been at work on his first novel for longer than he originally planned. It should be in bookstores some time before his death.

Bob Dylan: From The Village to the Basement

Bob Dylan: From The Village to the Basement

In the summer of 1967, Dylan ensconced himself, along with Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel, Garth Hudson and, later, Levon Helm, in the basement of a small house, dubbed “Big Pink” by the group, in West Saugerties, New York, out of the public eye for the first time in years. This is familiar history […]

Spotlight Artist: Amy Black – “Whiskey and Wine”

Spotlight Artist: Amy Black – “Whiskey and Wine”

Boston based singer/songwriter Amy Black possesses all the necessary traits of a soulful Southern artist: Her parents are from the Muscle Shoals area of Alabama, her dad is a preacher, her granddad loved to tell stories, and the family moved around a lot within Missouri and Alabama before finally heading to Boston.

Father’s Day Special: An Interview With Jim Avett (Father to Scott and Seth Avett)

Father’s Day Special: An Interview With Jim Avett (Father to Scott and Seth Avett)

[Originally published on Father’s Day 2010, ATF decided to re-run this interview in honor of good fathers everywhere. Jim Avett is the father of Scott and Seth — you know, the Avett Brothers. Jim Avett’s latest album, Second Chance, was released in February 2012 and is available on iTunes. Enjoy.] When asked about his plans […]

Kelley Anderson’s New Band: Grand Strand

Kelley Anderson’s New Band: Grand Strand

The so-called “Grand Strand” is 60 miles of South Carolina coastline stretching from Little River to Pawleys Island; more recently, however, it’s also the name of former Those Darlins member Kelley Anderson‘s new band. We knew this was bound to happen; sure enough, this past February, Anderson (“Kelley Darlin”) left the band she co-founded with […]

Rosanne Cash: American Music’s Theoretical Physicist of Love

Rosanne Cash: American Music’s Theoretical Physicist of Love

Anyone who has listened to her music and lyrics, or read her fiction and non-fiction, knows that Rosanne Cash is much more than a pretty face and the daughter of an American musical and cultural icon. (Her 2010 memoir, Composed, is graceful and beautifully written.) Rosanne Cash is an artist with great emotional depth and […]

The Brothers Comatose – “Respect The Van”

The Brothers Comatose – “Respect The Van”

String bands are so prevalent these days that if you stand on any street corner in this country and throw a rock you just might hit one. Hailing from San Francisco, the Brothers Comatose are not just any old string band. Their latest and second full-length, Respect The Van, finds this exceptional quintet (brothers Alex […]

Record Store Day 2012

Record Store Day 2012

Second only to National Pancake Day, Record Store Day is my personal favorite day of the year. RSD falls on April 21 this year, so go out and support your local independent record store. You can pick up some new or used vinyl while enjoying the unique scents of cellophane and patchouli at that funky […]

Album Review: The Vespers: “The Fourth Wall” (Black Suit)

Album Review: The Vespers: “The Fourth Wall” (Black Suit)

Do not, I repeat, DO NOT judge a book by its cover. The fresh-faced young musicians who comprise the Nashville band known as The Vespers play and sing way beyond their years. There is, however, an experienced professional element present here, as lead singers (and sisters) Callie and Phoebe Cryar (21 and 19 respectively), cut […]

SXSW: Alabama Shakes @ Stubb’s, 3-15-12

SXSW: Alabama Shakes @ Stubb’s, 3-15-12

ATF’s man in Austin, Jon Black, is hip deep in the SXSW fracas. But until his missives come rolling in, check out the audio for the Alabama Shakes’ rockin’ soul-shakin’ set at Stubb’s yesterday. Thank you, NPR. Thank you. While you’re listening you can read the story by NPR’s Stephen Thompson, who writes, “[Lead singer] […]

Album Review: Mercyland, Hymns For The Rest of Us (Mercyland Records)

Album Review: Mercyland, Hymns For The Rest of Us (Mercyland Records)

“The only good thing ever to come out of religion was the music.” — George Carlin. Like any good comic, the late Mr. Carlin exaggerated for effect. Religion does have its good points — most of the Ten Commandments, for example — but I lean more toward the Groucho Marx school of ideaology: I wouldn’t […]

Heartless Bastards: “Parted Ways” Video, New Album “Arrow”

Heartless Bastards: “Parted Ways” Video, New Album “Arrow”

New single, “Parted Ways,” from Heartless Bastards’ stirring and powerful new album “Arrow.”

Johnny Cash Birthday Bash, Feb. 24-25 – Brooklyn

Johnny Cash Birthday Bash, Feb. 24-25 – Brooklyn

As reported in No Depression back in 2005: “One February night, along the half-abandoned Brooklyn waterfront, Johnny Cash had a birthday party. A couple hundred people had packed a former longeshoreman’s bar to hear the songs of Cash and his in-laws, the Carter Family. Outside, a steady stream of yellow cabs pulled up, delivering locals […]

Little John the Conqueror: An Interview with The Reverend John DeLore

Little John the Conqueror: An Interview with The Reverend John DeLore

Back in August, with Hurricane Irene bearing down on NYC and New England, Brooklyn singer/songwriter The Reverend John DeLore tweaked the lyrics to the old Leadbelly classic, “Goodnight Irene,” giving it a timely Gotham City theme, a musical plea to spare the island metropolis. DeLore recorded a solo acoustic version around 3pm on August 28, […]

Beyond The Music: Mark Lennon – “California Calling”

Beyond The Music: Mark Lennon – “California Calling”

North Carolina native (and current L.A. resident) Mark Lennon is the unassuming, easygoing guy next door. That’s what I enjoyed about his debut EP, Down the Mountain (2009, Vagabonds Tune) — it was like sitting on a wide and comfortable front porch, drinking ice cold beer and listening to a friend play some solid, honest […]