The Roots Report: Beating a Deaf Horse: Protect those gorgeous lugholes, music lovers!

Okee dokee folks… Sometimes I feel like I am beating a dead horse, err, DEAF horse, when I talk about hearing protection, but it is something that I feel the need to constantly reiterate. A couple of years ago I wrote a column about hearing protection for our health issue (, and as we publish this year’s, a Facebook friend posted about his impending hearing loss from loud music. It bothers me to read these comments as hearing damage is preventable! For some reason folks seem to eschew advice to protect their hearing. They don’t want to listen and if they keep it up they won’t be able to listen. It is very simple to protect your hearing — just use ear plugs. They are easy to obtain and once you get into the habit of using them, it becomes second nature. I always have them with me and I always use them. My bandmate just spent $250 on custom, molded ear plugs. While you don’t need to spend that much, unless you are a performing musician, you should still grab a pair of the simple plugs that run about $20. Read and heed!

Since this is the health issue, I will talk about the health of one of our local musicians. My former bandmate, Mark Cutler, known for his other bands The Schemers, Raindogs and The Men of Great Courage, is currently dealing with a major health issue. It is a shame that we do not have national health courage in this country. Actually it is more of an embarrassment. Most advanced countries provide for their citizens, but in this country people are left to fend for themselves if they get sick, which can lead to them becoming financially ruined. To share his burden, Cutler’s friends and bandmates have put together a two-day fundraising concert called “Too Many Stars” — a reference to one of Mark’s songs. The show will be held at The Met on Saturday, January 19 at 7pm and on Sunday, January 20 from 4 to 9pm. The list of performers for the two day concert includes: Allysen Callery, Heather Rose, Dan Lilley and the Keepers with Amy Bedard, Adrienne West, Longshot VooDoo, Andy Stone Band, Bill Harley, members of Beaver Brown, Biscuit City, The Bickersins, Dave Tanury, Dopey Lopes, D’Vottes, John Larson and Silver Fields, Hope Anchor, Jonathan Gregg, Kelly Walsh Band, Kris Hansen, The Men of Great Courage, Neal and The Vipers, Neutral Nation, Rob Nelson, The Same Thing Project, The Schemers, Scott Doggett, Steve Smith and the Nakeds, Tanya McIntyre and The Professors, and more. To read an full interview with the organizers shoot over to: To purchase tickets, twinkle to:

One of last year’s Motif music award winners, Brianna White, contacted me recently about a new single that she released. White, whose amazing solo live performances include vocals, guitar and looping effects, has recorded a fully produced, pop single worthy of radio play. The energetic song, “Closer,” is a bubbly ode to desire and is available on all streaming platforms. If you would like to know more about Brianna, then get nigh to: To catch her live, get yourself to The Guild in Pawtucket on Friday, January 18. Tap over to: for more.

The Stadium Theatre in Woonsocket will be presenting a slew of tribute shows that could satiate your desire for the real thing. These days, the sounds of great bands are being kept alive by tribute acts, and one tribute that sounds particularly interesting is Top of the World: A Carpenters Tribute. Back in the 1970s the Carpenters, Karen and Richard, won a Grammy for Best New Artist. Their distinctive renditions of songs earned them a huge following and made them one of the best selling artists of all time. Unfortunately, Karen Carpenter died in 1983 at the age of 32 as a result of her battle with anorexia nervosa.  Song’s like “We’ve Only Just Begun,” “Rainy Days and Mondays” and “Close To You” continue to garner new fans worldwide. In 1994, a Carpenters tribute album, If I Was a Carpenter, was released and featured such artists as Sheryl Crow, The Cranberries and Matthew Sweet covering the songs of the Carpenters. My fave from this disc was “Superstar,” recorded by Sonic Youth. I was too cool to admit that I liked the Carpenters back in their heyday and never had the chance to experience them live. If you’re anything like me, then this show is for you. Top of the World’s Debbie Taylor captures the warm tones and contralto range that made Karen’s voice so unique. It will feel like “Yesterday Once More” on Saturday, February 2 with the Top of the World Tribute at The Stadium Theatre. Other tributes coming to the Stadium Theatre include Another Tequila Sunrise: the Tribute to The Eagles on Jan 25, Terry Lee Goffee: the ultimate Johnny Cash Tribute on Feb 1, Elvis Tribute by Leo Days on Jan 26, Boston Experience: Don’t Look Back on Feb 9, A Toast to the Rat Pack & Marilyn on Feb 23, Bob Seger Experience: Hollywood Nights on March 1, Queen Tribute: One Night of Queen on April 13, Creedence Clearwater Revival Tribute: Creedence Revived on April 27, Pink Floyd: The Machine Performs Pink Floyd with the Interstellar Light Show on May 18 and Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers Tribute: Full Moon Fever on Sep 20. For more, hammer on over to

That’s it for now. Thanks for reading.

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