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Everybody Knows The Truth 

Last December I went into the studio with my good friend Salim Nourallah and we cranked out this new song called “Everybody Knows The Truth.”  It was my attempt at writing a cheesy love song that turned into a stalker song.  In my mind, the music video is a horror movie. Maybe I should film it?

This song will be available for download later this year.


Spring Wildflowers 

What happened to winter? Here in Texas we didn’t have much of a winter this year and I’m okay with that.  No snow, no ice, and only a few days of freezing nights/mornings.  Now spring is here with its blooming wildflowers and weekly thunderstorms – it’s the best time of year in this state.

It’s been a few months since we last spoke and I wanted to update you on my world.  Folklore (2008-2012) came out a few weeks ago.  This project was a long time coming.  I had the idea of releasing my old catalog early last year and now it has finally happened.  I’m very happy with how it turned out.  And I thank you if you purchased the album.  However, I just recently discovered some old b-sides and live cuts from Waiting for the Flowers to Bloom that could have been included in Folklore.  I’m going to go through them and see if we should release them.  I’ll keep you updated on that.

The release of Folklore puts a nice little bow on my solo career.  So, what’s next?  I’m taking a break from “Nicholas Altobelli” and moving on to another project.  The writing process began last week and will continue through the spring.  If all goes well, I should be in the studio sometime this summer.  That’s all I’m going to say about it.  If it doesn’t fall apart, I should have some more information in the fall.  What does this mean?  I have no idea.

A few days ago I appeared on the local Dallas FOX station to perform some songs and promote my appearance at the Deep Ellum Arts Festival (Saturday, 8:30pm).  Zach Balch and Karyna Micaela backed me up.  Check out the video below.  They will also be backing me up at The Kessler Theater on April 14th (get your tickets!!!).

In other news, I quit Facebook.  I still update my music page but I have disconnected from my personal page.  It feels great - I now have extra time in the morning.

That’s all I got for now.  I will talk to you again this summer (or sooner).



Nick’s Picks:
Book – Timbuktu by Paul Auster
Music – The Burden of Unshakeable Proof by Vanessa Peters
Film – Midnight Special (2016)

-NA

New Year, Old Album 

Happy New Year!

It’s been a few months since my last post but there’s good reason for that.  I have been working on Folklore (2008-2012) – a compilation of old tracks from my old folk albums.  I have painstakingly sifted through my out-of-print back catalog and compiled sixteen tracks that passed my multi-layered quality control test (a.k.a., songs I still like).  These sixteen songs are a context to where I am now.  I listen to those songs and I can hear myself trying to find my way in music.  Not the business but the road to artistic identity (yeah, I know how pretentious that sounds.).  I think it’s best to listen to these songs in volumes rather than individual albums.  Which means there might eventually be a Folklore II sometime in the future.

Anyways, the album will be out on March 25th via Dalton Records.  You can pre-order it now on Bandcamp or Amazon.  iTunes pre-orders will begin next month.

Last Friday I played a show with my good friends, Salim Nourallah and Vanessa Peters, at Lola’s in Fort Worth.  It was an interesting night, to say the least, with soundcheck not beginning until 9pm for a 9pm show.  However, it was a fun night to hang out with old friends even if the circumstances were a bit absurd.

Thank you Karyna Micaela for the photo and Zach Balch for backing me up! 

(Karyna also took the album cover photo for Folklore.  She and Zach are amazing musicians - look them up the next time you are searching for new music!)

I got some shows booked next month that I’m looking forward to.  On February 11th I will be celebrating my 31st birthday at AllGood Café in Dallas with a song swap with Zach Balch and Isaac Hoskins; two of my favorite musicians in North Texas.  Sticking with the song swap theme, on February 17th I will be song swapping with Matthew Gray, Rahim Quazi, Charlie Shafter and Mara Lee Miller at The Live Oak in Fort Worth.  Tickets for that show will be on sale very soon.

I have never played SXSW.  I’m not sure why.  However, this year I’ll be playing an unofficial showcase on March 19th.  Details are still be worked out but I will share the details in next month’s blog post.

In April I will be performing, for the eighth year in a row (I believe?), at the Deep Ellum Arts Festival with a new band line-up.  Stay tuned for more info on that and announcements for other shows in the works.

At some point this year I will be heading back into the studio to work on some new material.  I’m going to really try and change it up a bit for the next album… but we’ll see what happens once I get in there.  I’ll try and post quite regularly during these sessions.

That’s all I got for right now.  I hope 2016 is treating you kinder than 2015 and I will talk to you next month – hopefully at a show!

Nick’s Picks:
Book – A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood
Music – Where Shall You Take Me by Damien Jurado
Film – Room (2015)

-NA

Happy Thanksgiving! 

I hope everyone is having a great Thanksgiving.  We are all currently in a food coma from my Mother’s cooking (see photo above).  As the heavy rain settles into Texas, I thought I’d give you a quick update:

We are getting close to completing my folk album compilation project.  We should have news for you before Christmas (if all goes well).

An extra show has been booked for my solo holiday song swap tour across the metroplex.  Below is the schedule and ticket info.

December 23rd
The Live Oak Music Hall
Fort Worth, TX
Show:  8pm or 9pm (keep an eye on website)
with Matthew Gray, Cameron Matthew Ray, Andy Pickett, Kenny Uptain, Sammy Strittmatter, and Charley Crockett
Tickets - $7-10

December 26th
Opening Bell Coffee
Dallas, TX
Show:  8pm
with Brian Lambert and more TBA
Cover - $5-10 suggested donation

The next full band show will be January 22nd at Lola’s in Fort Worth, TX with Vanessa Peters and Salim Nourallah.  Tickets are now on sale.

I have also started playing keyboards in the Dallas alt-country band, Eastwood (who also back me up).  We have a show on December 18th at the City Tavern in Dallas - always a fun time with these guys.

Our annual holiday sale has begun.  15% off all items at our online store.  Use the promo code “sadsanta” when you check out.  Free USA/international shipping.  Sale ends on January 1st. 

We will also be giving away autographed CDs on our Facebook and Twitter pages – keep an eye out for that.

Nick’s Picks:
Book – The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
Music – Sermon on the Rocks by Josh Ritter
Film – Spotlight (2015)

Happy Thanksgiving!  See you at the shows next month.
-NA

Goodbye Summer? 

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Is summer gone?  I hope so.  Looks like the days of 100 degrees might be behind us here in North Texas (fingers crossed).  It’s a lovely thought indeed.  Time to get ready for falling leaves, pumpkins, and horror movies.  I’ll post my horror movie recommendations in October.

Just wanted to check in and let you know what’s going on.  The release of Searching Through That Minor Key has been wonderful.  I want to thank everyone who took the time to listen to the album and/or purchase it.  Like I’ve said before, I’m real proud of this album and I’m beyond excited that most of you enjoy it as well.  If you haven’t heard or bought the album yet, CLICK HERE

I’m already thinking about the next project but I’m nowhere close to say anything for sure.  The only thing I know is that there will likely be no new music for 2016.  2017 might be a different story.  The plan is to spend 2016 writing and recording.  We will see what happens…

I say “no new music” in 2016 but we will be re-releasing some old stuff next year (maybe sooner - in time for the holidays).  A lot of you have asked about my old folk albums from 2008-2011 that are currently unavailable and out of print - I went back to the archives, pulled the best tracks from that era, and we will be releasing those selected tracks in a compilation album.  I hope to have more info in a few months.  We are still in the early planning stages of this project but it has been interesting revisiting those old songs.

I’m happy to announce that the 2nd Annual Christmas Hangover Debacle will be happening on December 26th at Opening Bell Coffee in Dallas.  A lot of you are probably asking yourselves, “2nd annual?  I don’t remember the first.”  True… but I didn’t call it that last year.  We did a small little show at Banter (RIP) in Denton last Christmas and I decided that this should be a tradition.  I’ll announce more information later about who else is performing.  In the meantime, save the date and book the babysitter.

As for upcoming shows…. nothing is on the books yet but keep an eye on our calendar for some announcements.

I think that’s it.  Enjoy the final days of the summer heat.  See you in the fall.
-NA

Nick’s Picks…
Book - The Brooklyn Follies by Paul Auster
Music - Skeleton Closet by Salim Nourallah
Film - The Gift (2015)

Summer Bummer 

Summer is here in Texas.  Let the heat begin.  The intense sun brings depression to me this time of year.  It becomes a daily battle to not let the climate bring me down.  It is one of the main reasons why I hope to be leaving this great state for good in the next few years.  More on that when the time comes.

My nephew, Jack, came to town and we took some great photos that ended up being part of my promotional campaign for the new album.  He is getting better at video games every year and I’m almost certain he will take my Nintendo crown before the age of ten.

My brand new album, Searching Through That Minor Key, comes out in three weeks on July 7th.  I have never been more excited about an album’s release before.  However, you got to keep expectations low in this business, whatever that means.  You still have time to pre-order it on iTunes and Amazon or if you like actual CDs, like myself, you can order them on Bandcamp.  I will even sign them with my fancy silver sharpie.

I turned thirty this year and my father turned sixty.  Time is going by too fast.  Stop every once and a while to enjoy things and don’t worry so much.  Listen to music, read books and watch movies.

Speaking of that, my book suggestion for this post is Larry McMurtry’s The Last Picture Show.  I saw the movie first and was blown away.  The book is even better.  My next book I’m reading is Peter Heller’s The Dog Stars on a recommendation from a friend (thanks, Noah!).

My music suggestion is an album called Do Not Leave Baggage All The Way by Secret Dakota Ring.  The band is the side project of Andy Ross of OK Go.  I mainly got into them because I love all things Josh Kaufman.  He’s a great musician (fantastic beard too) from Brooklyn who has played with Josh Ritter, Yellowbirds, Craig Finn, Dawn Landes and many many many others.  Do not confuse him with the guy with same name who was on The Voice.  If I ever make another record, I hope to have Josh produce it.  His band, Rocketship Park, is fabulous and you should find them on your favorite music delivery system.

As far as movies, not much to tell you.  I saw San Andreas and it was by far the worst movie I have ever seen in my thirty years on this planet.  I’m seeing Jurassic World this week and I’ll let you know on Twitter what I think.

That’s all.  I will talk to you again soon.  Thanks for taking the time and reading this.

-NA

PS.  I’m on Periscope.  Look me up!  I’ll probably do something special for the album release date… play a few songs, chat, whatever.

spring is here... 

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Happy May, my friends.  The storms are alive and well here in North Texas.  This is my favorite time of year (along with autumn).  I just thought I’d take the time and give you folks an update on what is going on in my world.

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A few nights ago Kevin (keyboards/vocals) and I got to play a show at the historic Sons of Hermann Hall in Dallas, Texas supporting Elvis Perkins (amazing!).  Such a lovely venue and a wonderful crowd.  Shortly after our set ended we headed over to the Vagabond for Salim Nourallah’s open mic night to play another set.  We Made some new fans and promoted my upcoming appearance there in a few weeks (see below).  There is a really wonderful and beautiful scene happening at the Vagabond on Tuesday nights.  If you’re a songwriter in the area, you should make plans to be there and share your work with us.

It felt good to get back on stage in a solo acoustic capacity.  For the past couple of months we have been doing the full rock band thing and I have loved every minute of it.  However, it’s nice to get back to basics sometimes, and that is the plan for a majority of the shows this summer.  We’ll bring back the rock the band in the fall and winter.

My show schedule is pretty full this summer.  Below are the dates.  I hope you folks can make it out to some, it’s always nice to see familiar faces.

06/02  Vagabond - Dallas, TX
06/04  Live Oak Music Hall - Fort Worth, TX - tickets

As you know, my new album is coming out on July 7th.  To celebrate the release, we have booked some special shows the week of the release.  CDs will be available for only $5 at these shows.

July 6th
Opening Bell Coffee
Dallas, TX
7pm
songwriters in the round hosted by Taylor Davis

July 7th
FREE online concert webcast
7pm EDT
https://www.concertwindow.com/93395-nicholas-altobelli

July 10th
Shipping & Receiving
Fort Worth, TX
8pm
with Zach Balch & Fate Lions

Pre-orders have begun for my new album.  Click here to pre-order the album and instantly get two free tracks.  All digital and CD orders will arrive before the July 7th release date.  iTunes pre-orders will begin in about a month.

Well…. that’s all I got for now.  After a long and grueling spring semester, I’m going to enjoy this summer a lot.  It feels good to finally realize that I can actually see the finish line… and it is near.  More on that in another blog, I suppose.

Nick’s Picks:
Book - In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Music - We Fall by Emile Haynie
Film - Ex Machina (2015)

Enjoy the spring…
-NA

New album! 

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Hello everyone!

I have a new album coming out this summer called Searching Through That Minor Key.  July 7th to be exact.  I’m real proud of this one.  I’m real proud I was able to pull the rabbit out of the hat and get this thing out into the world.  It wasn’t looking that great when 2015 rolled in.  I was afraid this might end up on the shelf for a while.

I started recording this album a week or two before Without a Home came out back in the later winter/early spring of 2013.  When the fall rolled in I put the album on hold to deal with a divorce and recorded the Mesocyclone EP.  One year later during the late summer of 2014, I restarted the project and we finished it around Halloween.

I must admit it feels strange that this album is coming out during the apex of summer.  This is an autumn album.  Crank up the AC, put on a sweater, and think of pumpkins and falling leaves when you give it a listen.

That’s all for now.  More details will be released in the coming weeks and months.  Thank you to everyone who is as excited as I am about this album.  It feels good to know that there is an interest out there.

Nick’s Picks:
Book - Saving Grace by Lee Smith
Music - Tunnel by Amy Stroup
Film - Dear Zachary:  A Letter to a Son About His Father (2008)

Thanks for reading this…

-NA

CLICK HERE TO PRE-ORDER THE NEW ALBUM!

New Single! 

I have a new single that will be available for free download on February 23rd on NoiseTrade.  Instead of making you wait until then to hear it, we have decided to release the audio stream today.

This song comes from a new LP that will be out later this year.  Hopefully in May or June.

Hope you like the song!