Mo3 Drops A Posthumous LP, A Local Singer Known For His Role In 1996’s ‘Romeo + Juliet’ Dies In A Car Crash And Two Major Local Compilations Are En Route.
While the world mourns the passing of rapper DMX, a North Texas singer known for playing the angelic choir boy in the 1996 classic Romeo + Juliet also sadly passed recently.
On April 2, the Plano-raised Quindon Tarver died in a car crash on the George Bush Turnpike. In his younger days, Tarver gained acclaim for his remakes of Rozalla’s “Everybody’s Free (To Feel Good)” and Prince’s “When Doves Cry” on the soundtrack for Baz Luhrmann‘s beloved film.
He was 38 years old, and he is survived by a loving family.
As one of his uncles told The Daily Beast of Tarver’s life: “He was a loving nephew, he loved everybody, believed in being straightforward. He loved music since he was young, and singing eventually took him all around the world. That was his passion.”
Tarver’s latest release — titled “Stand Our Ground” — came out in January in response to various injustices perpetrated by police against minorities across the country, but more specifically about a cousin named Darius Tarver, who was gunned down by a Denton police officer in 2020. Just last month, Denton courts decided that the officer involved in the shooting will not face charges.
The music video for the song includes the police footage of the event, as well the late Tarver’s soulful cry for justice.
Rest assured, Tarver’s fight for justice didn’t die with him in his car crash.
In a separate yet fitting example of people’s legacies outliving their bodily vessels, the late Bludded Head musician and visual artist Nevada Hill, who died of cancer in 2016, was recently honored on a transatlantic collaborative musical project between area musician Chris Plavidal (of Stumptone) and Stephen Lawrie of England’s The Telescopes. Recorded under a new banner of Plavidal’s called Storms At Sea that was once meant to include Hill as a member, the band’s debut EP was released on Dreamy Life Records March 26. It even features the late Hill’s viola work for an extra-supernatural touch to the funeral dirge-inspired songs.
The real never truly die, and late Dallas rapper Mo3‘s friends and collaborators are intent on making sure that’s the case with his legacy as well. Just last week, the performer’s posthumous album Shottaz 4 Eva hit the shelves, with that a couple new videos from H$M Records — including the YFN Lucci-featuring “Lit” — already getting the music video treatment thanks to footage filmed prior to Mo3’s death.
Meanwhile, NTX Vinyl‘s DFW Legacy Series is continuing to do its part in honoring scenes of Dallas past by releasing beloved local tracks from yesteryear on wax. Next up for the project is an effort featuring double, colored vinyl LP featuring various local in-studio performances recorded for Josh Venable‘s beloved “The Adventure Club” show on Dallas’ gone-but-not-forgotten 102.1 KDGE-FM The Edge radio station.
Set for release in August of this year, the release includes live recordings from such beloved area acts as Old 97’s, Hagfish, Funland, Chomsky, Black Tie Dynasty, Ben Kweller, Eisley, The Paper Chase, Sparrows, Slobberbone and The Rocket Summer, just t name a few. Pre-order your copy here.
Turns out, a newer crop of North Texas favorites have teamed up for an upcoming compilation release of note, too. After announcing its arrival with the release of Leon Bridges and Keite Young‘s cover of Pastor T.L. Bennett‘s 1971 gospel song “Like A Ship” last month, Luke Sardello and Skin Wade‘s local Eastwood Music Group label revealed this week more details surrounding its forthcoming charity album, Truth to Power.
A limited run of 2,000 copies of the triple LP — released on smoky clear vinyl, and produced in collaboration with the Dallas Mavericks and FirstCom Music (UMPG) — will be released on Record Store Day on June 12, with 100 percent of its proceeds going to organizations and non-profits committed to more equitable communities around the United States, including the House of Blues Music Forward Foundation and other organizations that aim to help North Texas’ Black-owned businesses with marketing and capital investments.
The “soundtrack for empowerment” will feature contributions from performers such as Bastards of Soul (the lone act currently signed to Eastwood), Sarah Jaffe, Sam Lao, Free Blk, Black Pumas, Abraham Alexander, N’Dambi, Paul & The Tall Trees and more. You can peruse the whole performer and track listing here.
In case that list of artists doesn’t get you amped enough for the release, Dallas rapper Flower Child just dropped her studio sessions video for an inside look at the making of her featured, titled track for the effort.
And that’s just the start of this week’s new music video offerings.
For starters, just a week after we shared with you the lyric video for St. Vincent‘s “Melting of The Sun” off of her upcoming Daddy’s Home LP , we now have the real deal — although it does offer a familiar touch featuring the same Helios-cosplaying St. Vincent recounting the narrative.
Sticking on St. Vincent news before moving on to other new videos, the Dallas artist born Annie Clark also covered Metallica‘s “Sad But True” and Nine Inch Nails‘ “Piggy” for yet another upcoming Record Store Day release. For his part, Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett is as much a fan of St. Vincent’s as she is his. Earlier this year, he gushed to Guitar World about her music: “I love her riffs. The way she writes, some of her musical motifs are just so different from anything I would ever play. I find that so intriguing. And I love the fact that she understands totally what she’s doing and she understands the theory behind it.”
Of course, as some of you may recall, St. Vincent got her start in Dallas’ massive Polyphonic Spree ensemble, which also just last week announced intentions to release its own batch of covers songs for an upcoming album called Afflatus. This week, the band released a taste of what’s to come from that effort by sharing a fun look at the really, really big band covering INXS‘ “Don’t Change” from the 1982 album Shaboo Shoobah.
Lest the above two paragraphs weren’t full-circle enough for you, St. Vincent covered INXS herself once upon a time too.
Moving on, the up-and-coming soul and pop singer Mandolin Nichole also released this week a video for her new “Above” single, in which she concedes that “never-ending happiness can only be found above in heaven.”
Rosegarden Funeral Party‘s latest offering also finds the band relating with the great beyond. Just check out these lyrics for “Gates Of Heaven” for proof: “Open the gates of heaven to me/Tonight I need salvation/Open the doors of your sanctuary /Deliver me from damnation/Open the gates of heaven to me/Spread angels wings over my head.” While the single was released on New Year’s Day — putting a cap on a year that absolutely begged salvation — but the video directed by Erin Devany of All Hallow’s Productions just found its way to the web last Friday.
While he may not have new visuals to go with it just yet, the Dallas rapper Lord Byron has a new album out — this latest one again for the Dolfin Records set. Called B4 FYODOR and released on March 29, the new release already has Bandcamp‘s stand of approval.
Essential Releases: B4 FYODOR is a great entry into the world of Lord Byron (@92BYC)
— bandcamp (@Bandcamp) April 3, 2021
The lead single — called “KD” — is just the latest entry into the performer’s alluringly dark and gritty catalog.
Speaking of essential releases: It looks like we’ll be getting some new Vandoliers music this Friday — this time featuring beloved Texas musician Bruce Robison — and just in time for everyone to strap on their boots and hit the dancefloors again, too. Good looking out, fellas!
Meanwhile, word around the grapevine is that the heavy Dallas favorites Frozen Soul will soon have a beer named after from Arlington’s Division Brewery. The brewery has become a popular resort for thirsty music heads as it operates in tandem with Growl Records, a shop that doubles as a music venue. Keep your ear to the ground for more official info on the release as it comes — or, frankly, just keep checking back in with us — because that thing is sure to be frosty!
Speaking of tasty treats, Marc Ribillet was the guest on Nailed It! host and comedian Nicole Byers‘ “Why Won’t You Date Me?” podcast this week. As Byers describes in the episode, discovered the electronic artist also known as the Loop Daddy via his “Racism Sucks” upload last year — and, in her own words, she was immediately on board with “a white man in underwear screaming racism sucks.” Check out a little reminder of that video below, and listen to the suggestively-titled “Finding The G-Spot” podcast episode here.
In additional fun team-up news, it seems the crazed New Zealand rock ‘n’ rollers Labretta Suede and Moondog of Labretta Suede & The Motel 6 fame have recently taken up residence in North Texas, Better still? They also announced they will be taking up residence at Three Links in Deep Ellum each Thursday nights for the month of May.
Lastly this week, I’d like to wish a happy birthday to the Dallas funny-punks in Responsible Johnny. The band’s quinceañera last year may have been a bust due to COVID, but this year marks the band’s Sweet 16 — and we here at Central Track can’t wait to get them back on stage to celebrate sooner than later. That sentiment, I’m told, is especially true of CT founder and publisher Pete Freedman, who is constantly berated by frontman Rob Michaud online for not showing enough love to the band.
Reached for comment, Freedman promises to finally write about the band if both they and CT remain active until the Johnnies celebrate their 30th birthday.
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