Jake Blount visited on Nine Volt Heart to discuss his recent release, “Spider Tales”. It was a fascinating discussion on race, activism as well as music’s role in educating the listener on topics sometimes difficult to broach in other situations. The material on “Spider Tales” is superbly researched and curated from centuries of old time music with a focus on the black and indigenous roots of the music. The songs have themes which unfortunately remain stubbornly relevant including oppression and resistance to power.
Our conversation touches on the role of traditional African American dance as well as this old time stringband music. I ask Jake about his research process and the excavation of these tunes and their selection appropriate to the theme of Anansi the Spider, whose fables are handed down from one generation to the next. In much the same way, these songs and tunes have been preserved and researched through Jake’s field research.
We talk about his top notch band for “Spider Tales” which include Tatiana Hargreaves on fiddle, Rachel Eddy on guitar, Hase Ciacco on bass, Nic Gareiss on dance/percussion. The Horseflies’ Judy Hyman and her husband Jeff Claus add their instrumental and production help.
Jake and most of his band are part of special online stream put together by “BluegrassPride” which will offer ten hours of live music dedicated to the cancelled San Francisco Pride Day. It is called “Porch Pride” and airs on 6/27 and 6/28 on bluegrasspride.net The event also features NineVolt favorites Joe Troop from Che Apalache,Rachel Baiman and George Jackson, Front Country, Molly Tuttle, Sam Gleaves, Della Mae, and Amythyst Kiah.
Of course, the segment includes four of the tunes off Jake’s new release. We start the segment off with “Roustabout”, “Move, Daniel” and “Where Did You Sleep Last Night” and we finish the segment with the compellingly chilling “Mad Mama’s Blues”.