Martin Devaney's picks for Stone Arch Bridge Festival

Martin Devaney's picks for Stone Arch Bridge Festival

Potentially one of the nicest working musicians in town, Martin Devaney is also one of the busiest. Martin has consistently been a prime motivator in the scene, most recently as a part-time booker at the Turf Club, and key part of the recently resurrected Eclipse Records in Downtown Saint Paul.

Having played virtually every stage in the twin towns the "Mayor of Saint Paul" works under a traditional ethic and tradition of bringing his music not only to the people but also working tirelessly in networking with fellow players and musicians to do the same.

In between working the till and spinning some dusty vinyl classics at his day job at Eclipse Records, I managed to get Martin on the phone to give me the low down on what he's been up to and the big weekend coming up at the Stone Arch Bridge Festival near Saint Anthony Main in Minneapolis where Martin will perform along with an exhaustive list of great local performers.

Gimme Noise: It's a another big weekend for music in Minneapolis. I think the Stone Arch Bridge Festival is definitely one of the bigger events that brings so many folks out to see music and art they've never seen before. I remember seeing you play there under the bridge and thinking it was so cool for folks to be able to see you that probably wouldn't necessarily go to a bar rock show.

Martin Devaney: Yeah, I played a few years ago with a band and also solo last year. It's a great time to walk around and check out all the art, see friends and people from all over having a good time in general. Social aspect is really cool with so many bands playing. It's a great free music option for people. So it's a nice way to showcase local music. It's a very inviting festival in that regard. Plus the gorgeous scenery of Downtown Minneapolis.

That whole area is one of my favorite places in the city for sure. So what's your set up this year?

I'll be doing this one solo again and probably have my girlfriend, Kate sing with me some. Last year a friend of ours did a live painting of her at Stone Arch that turned out really cool.

Martin Devaney's picks for Stone Arch Bridge Festival

Looking at the schedule here it looks like there's more bands than usual this year.

It's always been three stages but yeah I do think there's more bands than before. I've been playing down there a lot at the Aster Cafe. I love that place for it's great vibe and food. It's been great to go out to see Molly Mahrer and Erik Koskinen since they moved their Wednesday night gig at Nye's to the Aster. The area has a lot to offer.

Who are some of the other artists you'd recommend to make sure to check out?

Well I can't recommend Heiruspecs. I got nothing to do with those guys. Well, I am excited about Very Small Animal. I got to know them when I was booking at the Amsterdam. Brian Laidlaw from that band is also playing with his band as well that day. Sleep Study are always awesome. But well, I don't know man. it's hard for me to recommend seeing them since they are playing the same time as me!

Haha! Well that's fair. I suppose people can check out bits of both your sets. Hey, it's a good problem to have when there's so much cool stuff.

Yeah. The Pinsch are kind of aggressive power pop. Evening Rig of course, I love when they are doing stuff.

So you been working at Eclipse Records since that re-opened and you are still running trivia around town, plus playing music solo and with Crossing Guards. I noticed you started pumping some life back into the Clown Lodge Lounge at the Turf Club.

We put in a new PA down there and are booking shows pretty steadily down there again for Wednesday nights. It's one of my favorite spots and always a lot of fun. I just recorded a new record with my band up in Sparta, MN with Rich Mattson. It'll be nice to play this stuff for people. It's kind of more country than my stuff has been before. I been half jokingly been calling it my 'Willie Nelson' record.

Oh sounds way cool. Nothing wrong with keeping people on their toes.

Yeah, I think my next one will be more of rock band kind of thing. I like how Neil Young can do a Ragged Glory record with Crazy Horse and then follow it up with a mellower kind of record like Harvest Moon. I really want to do more of those kinds of things.

For information, schedules of all the performers and directions to the Stone Arch Bridge Festival go their website.

Get the Devaney habit by checking out Martin's website.

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