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Middle East Excursion

Regional act heads out for tour of military bases


Raleigh-based Weekend Excursion are gearing up for a four-week tour of military bases in the Middle East where they'll be playing for American Troops. Stops include Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan. The band departs on June 25 and will move from base to base, sometimes by military aircraft and other times by commercial airlines. While on base, band members will eat, sleep and live with the troops. Two send-off shows are taking place before their departure, one in Charlotte (Friday, June 6, at Amos' Southend) and another in Raleigh. The band is encouraging fans to write a letter to a soldier, which they will hand-deliver. Letters can be brought to the show or mailed to their management office at: Cord Management, Attn: Letters From Home, 1800 Cannon Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28269. More info can be found at

The Houston Brothers (Justin and Matt Faircloth) are releasing a new full length, self-titled album on LiquiLab Records. They'll be hosting a release party at the Steeple Lounge on Friday, June 13. The Faircloths recorded the material with additional help from Mark Lynch. The material was mixed by Joe Kuhlmann and mastered by Dave Harris. Guest musicians for the show will include Lynch, John Morris (Snagglepuss), Shawn Lynch (Poprocket, Les Dirt Clods) Scott McCall (Two Dollar Pistols) and Jason Schwartz. Cover cost of $10 includes a copy of the disc (or you can pay $5 and not get a copy of the CD).

The next show in town for My So-Called Band -- Friday, June 6, at Tremont Music Hall -- will be the last with longtime drummer Chris Loebs. Loebs is leaving the band to continue his education at East Carolina as a Classical Guitar Major. Kevin Gavagan will be taking over duties on drums.

Also on the bill for the show at Tremont is Minority Party which features Loebs' younger brother. It's a CD Release Party for the group as well. Hairball will open the show.

The Tombstone Daddys have undergone some lineup changes recently. Vocalist Kurt Newsom left the band in January to record a solo CD, and drummer Mike Pressley recently left to join another local band. Guitarist Scott Gates has taken over lead vocals and auditions for drummers are currently being held. If you're interested in auditioning, email The band's first demo CD is now available in MP3 format at their website www.tomb

Bellglide will soon begin recording with Mitch Easter (R.E.M., Pavement). The band has booked two sessions with Easter at The Fidelitorium Studios in Forsyth County for June 13-17 and July 4-8.

Chris Garges has been busy working with various projects. Recently he completed engineering duties with two Raleigh-area bands, Something So Far and Round Two, at Jay Howard Production Audio. He's also completed work on projects by Ol' VW (Vaughn Walters), Soulstation and Sinclair.

At the Old House Studio in Gastonia, Garges worked with engineer David Black on a project for Just For Tonight. And at Jamie Hoover's Hooverama, he played drums on a few songs by singer/guitarist Aaron Carlson. In addition, Garges will soon be working with Arthur Smith and his son, Clay, at Arthur's home studio.

Garges also just finished producing and engineering six songs for former Rude Mechanicals frontman Jason Scavone. According to Garges, the album features Jonathan Erickson (ex-Vine) on drums, John Licare on bass, and guests Gray Brewster (Athenaeum, Lindsey Horne) on guitar and Ron Brendle on upright bass. Scavone will be returning to the studio soon to record a few more songs to complete his solo album.

Dead Letter Office have officially changed their name to Orange Crush. The band's new web address is

We've written some in the past about the local connection to national recording artist 3 Doors Down -- their tour manager, Gary Pettus and drum tech, Tom Willhelm, are both from Charlotte. When the band was in town recently to perform at SpeedStreet, it not only gave Tom a chance to perform with his old band, Cherry Bomb, it also gave 3DD drummer Daniel Adair a chance to drum tech for Tom. Daniel joined Tom behind the skins for a song, too.

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