Tag Archives: Barry Privett

New Music / Tour From Carbon Leaf

Carbon Leaf News

Richmond, Virginia rockers, Carbon Leaf have done it again, as they are set to release the re-imagining of their 2006 release Love Loss Hope Repeat on August 3rd with their new album Love Love Hope Repeat Reneaux (LLHRR). This re-recording follows the band’s successful approach with Indian Summer Revisited last summer.

Continue reading New Music / Tour From Carbon Leaf

Details for Carbon Leaf’s Ragtime Festival

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Carbon Leaf Performing their Ragtime segment in Orlando

Carbon Leaf Announces Ragtime Carnival 2015

Well, as they hinted about in their recent Florida visit, these Virginia-based rockers are going back home for their second annual Ragtime Festival.

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Carbon Leaf’s unique festival will take place over two days, May 15 & 16 at Pocahontas State Park. The headliners will offer-up three distinct sets, and will be joined this year by 13 bands on two stages.

Some useful links:
Carbon Leaf Concert Review
RARA’s Farm’s Festival Survival Guide
Barry Privett Interview
Event Information
Park Camping Information

From the press release:
Carbon Leaf will perform three sets over the weekend, an acoustic set Saturday morning, and full-band performances closing out each night. Additional artists performing at Ragtime Carnival include actor/director Jeff Daniels with the Ben Daniels Band, Trigger Hippy feat. Joan Osborne and former Black Crowes members Jackie Green and Steve Gorman, as well as Sons of Bill.


FRIDAY, MAY 15 (Doors 5:30pm)

6:00pm – People’s Blues of Richmond
8:15pm – Carbon Leaf

7:30pm – Ben Daniels Band

SATURDAY, MAY 16 (Doors 10:45am)

11:30am – Sons of Bill
1:00pm – Scythian
2:30pm – Red Wanting Blue
4:15pm – Jeff Daniels & the Ben Daniels Band
6:15pm – Trigger Hippy
8:15pm – Carbon Leaf

11:00am – Carbon Leaf
12:30pm – TBA
2:00pm – Ian McFeron
3:45pm – Marie Miller
5:30pm – von Grey
7:30pm – Mandolin Orange


Friday, May 15 – $10 Advance / $15 Door (General Admission)
Saturday, May 16 – $25 Advance / $30 Door (General Admission)

Tickets go on sale Friday, February 20th at 10am through , Brocks Bar-B-Que in Chester, and the Pocahontas State Park office.


Tent camping for Carbon Leaf’s Ragtime Carnival can be reserved through www.pocahontaslive.com. Camping rates are $12 per person for one night or $20 per person for both nights.

Okay, well if you made it this far in the article, you are obviously a rock music fanatic like the Rock And Roll Animals at RARAsFarm. Do us a big favor and like our Facebook page for future updates, rock news and photos. Thanks and please spread the word to other intelligent, creative, beautiful music fans like you 🙂

Carbon Leaf Pulls Out All the Stops

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Carbon Leaf Show Review (and a Close Look at Their Gear)

Over the weekend, I had my first chance to catch this talented quintet from Richmond. I had heard that the band puts on a great show, highlighted by fantastic musicianship and a huge array of instruments. Truer words were never spoken.

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I’ll get to the show itself in a bit, but I snuck into soundcheck to learn a little more about the slew of instruments dotting the stage when these guys perform. This night, on the cozy stage at the Social, they actually downsized a bit – travelling light, as they were headed out to sea on The Rock Boat the following day.

Charismatic front man Barry Privett plays a harmonica, two different whistles and uses a handful of creative percussion items, drummer Jason Neal has some fun stuff on his kit and joins his mates center stage with a small drum slung over his shoulder for a few songs. We see a standard electric bass and a fantastic upright bass masterfully played by Jon Markel, but the real fun starts when we get into the remainder of the string instruments.

We took a tour of the guitars and other assorted items with Terry Clark and Carter Gravatt after sound check. These two guys are absolutely passionate about their craft, and both talented musicians.

It also became obvious that the band members are incredibly versatile, sometimes switching out instruments nightly and within a set based on the venue, the mood of the room and flow of the setlists, which are quite fluid. I asked Gravatt about the plans for the Rock Boat, “Sometimes we’ve done three completely different sets so we don’t repeat stuff, so I’ll be switching up.”

Clark added, “We will change things from show to show. A lot of folks come to all three shows and we want to make it interesting. A handful will get played each set, but we like to switch it up to keep the fans engaged, and keep us engaged, too!”

I mentioned bow fluid the setlists typically were and Gravatt noted, “It depends on the tour and the venue. Usually there’s a core set we want to play every evening. There’s usually a few variables and we try to honor some requests.”

“On this tour, we are still promoting Indian Summer Revisited, so the core set is Indian Summer songs, then a block of some of the more Celtic material, and then the rest is tweaked night by night,” explained Clark. “Barry actually keeps a database of every show we play, so when we return to a venue, he’ll look to see what we played so that we don’t repeat ourselves.”

(Check out our recent interview with Barry Privett here)

Gravatt shared, “It kind of depends on where we are playing. Barry will show up and kind of decide what kind of show we’re going to play and from there, I whittle down what instruments I’ll be playing. So, I usually don’t know until I get to the venue.”

As you can see, each show is like a box of Cracker Jacks, and on this night, they actually left a few things behind due to space requirements on The Rock Boat. When you see them live next, in addition to the instruments we’ll see described shortly, you’re just as likely to see them sporting a dobro, fiddle, or who knows what else.

So, we took a quick tour through the racks of instruments.

Clark shared a bit about his rack of guitars: “I play a ’75 Les Paul with a few modifications to it. Then I’ve got a Gibson J-45 acoustic and a Tackamine that I use for alternate tunings.

Diverse collection, but nothing like what we saw on Gravatt’s stands. The descriptions below are all from Gravatt unless noted, and songs where the instrument is more noticeable are listed afterwards.

Bouzouki – Per Clark, “Sometimes you don’t even it’s really bouzouki because it’s doubling an acoustic guitar part or snuck in there with another instrument, you’ll ask, ‘What’s that weird instrument in there?'” “Desperation Song,” “Changeless” and “Paloma.”

Banjo – Some nights if we’re doing an acoustic show, I’ll play banjo on a few songs that I would have played electric guitar on. “On Any Given Day,” Another Man’s Woman” and “One Prairie Outpost.” Sometimes Barry will say put these songs together and I have to go figure out a way to play it on banjo. On a song called “Tombstone Versus Ashes, I play it in claw hammer style.

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Carter Gravatt’s incredible collection of foot pedals.

Guitar Viola – This unique instrument takes a guitar and a viola de gamba and kind of mushes them together. I’m still tinkering around with different tunings for it, but everything I play is set on a tuning I wrote a song for, so I don’t really improvise on that much; it’s more the song it was written for. “Song For The Sea” and “Ghost Dragon Attacks Castle.”

Mandolin – You’ll hear it on “American Tale.”

Violin – Tonight, I’ll play a fiddle tune “Banish Misfortune” on it and a song called “Block Of Wood” and of course we play it a lot on some of our old Irish tunes.

Guitar – I have these Bill Callahan constructed guitars. This is a Gibson, rebuilt by him; he machined it from a block of steel and replaced all of the hardware.

Electric Mandola with a high B-String – It’s used on “Raise The Roof” off of Indian Summer Revisited. It has more of a cool sound, especially when you add distortion to it.

As impressive as that was, they left a boatload of stuff back home, so we didn’t even get to fiddle, hurdy gurdy, 12 string guitar, dobro, bodhran or Privett’s bagpipes!

I truly enjoyed my time at soundcheck, but the show was just as entertaining. Gravatt, Clark and friends played superbly and seemed to be having a great time on stage, but this band truly revolves their live show around the charismatic Privett.

The band boasted some fantastic, meandering jams that at times featured every musician; Privett often taking a back seat to let each member shine in the spotlight. But when Privett stepped back into the spotlight, he was constantly engaging with the near sold out and eagerly participative crowd, bantering frequently, sharing a social (at The Social) and downing a shot or two. At one point, he announced “My limit is two per show” and then passed the third shot on to the eagerly accommodating Clark.

Privett shared his affinity for the military in general and his appreciation for the members of the USS Eisenhower specifically. We also heard a killer patriotic song they were toying with in soundcheck. We’ll leave the details for now, but can’t wait to see when it is unveiled in the future. (and here it is: Danger Zone)

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Carbon Leaf’s Ragtime Carnival segment.

Highlights from the two hours plus set were the Ragtime Carnival segment where the full band came front and center for a handful of captivating folksy songs, and the brief but incredibly energetic Celtic segment. Gone For Good This Time? No…

See our photos from the show here: Carbon Leaf Photo Album
Rock On!

Okay, well if you made it this far in the article, you are obviously a rock music fanatic like the Rock And Roll Animals at RARAsFarm. Do us a big favor and like our Facebook page for future updates, rock news and photos. Thanks and please spread the word to other intelligent, creative, beautiful music fans like you 🙂


Interview With Carbon Leaf’s Barry Privett

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Barry Privett of Carbon Leaf Chats With RARAs Farm

Over the past twenty years or so, I’ve heard a bunch of references to this interesting and engaging band out of Virginia.  They’ve developed a rabid, loyal fan base and quite the reputation as excellent live performers.

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I’m a sucker for creative rock bands, and even more so for bands boasting any kind of folksy Irish flair. This eclectic quintet, though, somehow kept slipping through my radar, but that’s about to change, as they are headed to Orlando for a show at The Social on Friday, January 23rd.  To prep for my first Carbon Leaf experience, I caught up with frontman Barry Privett for an engaging interview.

Cretin: There seems to be a recent trend for bands to reimagine previously successful releases. You recently did that with Indian Summer Revisited, what drove that decision?
Barry  Privett: Several reasons: Indian Summer was turning 10 years old, and the label still owned the master recording, but not the songs themselves, so what better way to celebrate than re-record the album – which legally we were now permitted to do – and return the Indian Summer project back into Carbon Leaf’s control. Fans were very enthused by it, and of course the original album still exists. We had a lot of fun making it, and have been around for 21 years, so we’d like to do this with all of our older material, and introduce the music to new fans who may not be familiar with some of it. It’s a great thing to do in between writing and recording new material.

Cretin: When you finished the new album, with ten years of life experiences added to your conscience did you find any one or two songs that took on a totally new meaning to you?
Barry  Privett: We certainly are better at playing the songs now than back then! I can’t say that songs mean something else to me now, though the original subjects of certain songs to fade in and out of memory more now when performing them. I would say the songs become their own thing and the focus is on the energy of the crowd that is singing them back, rather than pondering about a breakup or something. I think that’s a good thing. “One Prairie Outpost” is perhaps the most nostalgic one for me on the album, so that takes me back a bit I think. But I don’t think of ole Jenny every time I sing “Life Less Ordinary.” Not every time anyway.

Cretin: In your live set, what versions of the songs will the fans be hearing?
Barry  Privett: Either more stopped down acoustic or maybe even some around 1-mic, but typically these songs feel the best when the whole band is behind them. Indian Summer was a pretty dense record.

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Cretin: The music has very obvious Celtic influences, especially vocally, but it is not really Celtic rock. How would you classify the band’s style?
Barry  Privett: Right. The Celtic influence percentage is fairly small, but it leaves an obvious footprint. Some of the songs are overt Celtic-rock, but then there’s “Desperation Song,” or “She’s Gone,” or “Oi” that have some of those folk elements more as passing textures. Maybe “She’s Gone” not so much, I don’t know…I should do a spreadsheet. But yeah, you put us next to a beer swilling, Celtic rock band and it’s a different thing, which will often frustrate some people who want to swing beers more. I’m happy to be left of center of that when we choose to work in the genre.

Cretin: For a first timer coming out to see you guys live (like me), what should I expect to see/hear?
Barry  Privett: There will be a lot of styles and instruments. Generally we try to be engaging, fun, but hopefully play well enough where people walk out thinking we are a really great band with good tunes! It’s a fun night.

Cretin: The band has shared the stage with some great names in the music business over your 23 year career. Were there any acts you played with who really influenced the band’s sound?
Barry  Privett: When we were really plying the Celtic stuff early on as a younger band, Great Big Sea was a big influence, but they have kind of a special thing and you can’t just jump up there and be that. And we didn’t, but their fan base was very receptive to us and we still benefit from that association for the few tours we supported them.

Cretin: So you’ve got one show in Orlando before you hit the high seas for The Rock Boat. Sharing the stages with Sister Hazel, BNL, The Mowglis and a handful of other diverse bands. How did this gig come about?
Barry  Privett: It’s maybe our 7th year? We’d played a show or two with Sister Hazel in the past.  I’m not sure how it came about, other than our agent got the gig at the time. It’s great to see some old friends, and see music, which you don’t get to do when you’re in a band, ironically enough. It’s good to commune a bit, and meet fans too. Pretty relaxed atmosphere.

Cretin: Any of the bands on the Rockboat you are particularly excited to see?
Barry  Privett: There are so many I’ve not even heard of, so yeah I will have my list, when we have the free time. I’ve not seen Michael Franti yet, and we’ve ganged around to varying degrees with Sister Hazel, Gaelic Storm, Red Wanting Blue, Will Hoge, Scars on 45, Von Grey….but yeah, most the boat artists this year are new to us, so it should be a great time. The artists are always solid on TRB.

You can catch Barry and his Carbon Leaf mates at The Social on Friday, January 23rd, before they hit the high seas with The Rock Boat, leaving Miami on the 24th.

Rock On!

Okay, well if you made it this far in the article, you are obviously a rock music fanatic like the Rock And Roll Animals at RARAsFarm. Do us a big favor and like our Facebook page for future updates, rock news and photos. Thanks and please spread the word to other intelligent, creative, beautiful music fans like you 🙂