MEONA Nominates The Muckrakes in Two Categories

Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, November 19, 2009 9:12 AM

MEONA (MUSIC EVENTS OUTDOOR OF NOTABLE ACHIEVEMENT) is an organization that heavily promotes and supports local / regional bands for the love of music. Every year, MEONA nominates working bands of "notable achievment", this year they have nominated The Muckrakes in two categories, "Best Americana Band" as well as "Entertainers of the Year" (Band). We are the only group to have been nominated in two categories. We're very happy to be nominated.

We're asking for your support in our nomination by voting for us.

Voting is very simple. All we're asking you to do is send a very short e-mail to the fine folks at MEONA ( with the subject line of : "MEONA Nominations" and tell them that you'd like to vote for The Muckrakes as "Best Americana Band" as well as "Entertainers of the Year (Band)". Meona's e-mail address is: .That's it.

We feel very privledged to be nominated as there are a lot of talented people and bands in our region that work very hard on their craft and we wish the other nominees luck.

More information about MEONA can be found at:

Alternative Recording Formats/ Marketing/ Merchandising

Posted by The Muckrakes , Tuesday, November 17, 2009 3:35 PM

The Muckrakes is thinking about putting out a recording in another format as well as CD and digital download. Basically, the band sees the music industry changing and evolving and wants to keep up-to-date with various products and find new ways to merchandise and advertise.

It can get expensive for a band to release new material in a different medium, but we'd do it IF it was worth it to our fan and friend base.

We know that there's a fondness for vinyl and even some "hipsters" even prefer cassette. A few months ago, Cheap Trick released their new recording on 8-Track and we have a few friends that have released their album on USB's as well as USB armbands. We've also seen CD's as well as USB's packaged in paintcans. And just the other day we came across an album offered on a "credit card" type of format.

What do you think? Is this just marketing hype with all the products that are offered to artist now-a-days or does it serve a purpose, such as something for music collectors as well as benefiting the band as a marketing / advertising tool?

Sound off and let us know.

New T-Shirt Design. Whatcha think?

Posted by The Muckrakes , Wednesday, September 2, 2009 6:46 PM

Good news gang, The Muckrakes are gettin' some fancy duds. That's right friends, we're buying T-shirts. Below is what the T-shirt design looks like as well as a few examples.

The Design

Ladies White T-Shirt

Ladies Black Baby Doll T-Shirt

Men's / Regular White T-shirt

Men's / Regular Black T-shirt

Whatcha think?


Posted by The Muckrakes , Monday, August 24, 2009 10:07 AM


Posted by The Muckrakes , Wednesday, July 1, 2009 11:41 AM

THE MUCKRAKES are headlining SEANSTOCK which is a benefit for children with autism on SAT, Aug 1st at 7PM on the Oceanview Pier in Norfolk, VA.

Other bands playing are SPOONBENDER, BAD CAP ROCKETS, HEATHER JEANETTE and AMANDA RAIN. Tickets / donations are only $5.00.

Tickets can be purchase through SEANSTOCK.ORG or at The Oceanview Pier the day of the show.

Fête de la Musique, Sunday, June 21. Bring your Dad out for Father's Day!

Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, June 18, 2009 11:14 AM

Alliance Française Chapitre de Grasse invites the public to pack a picnic lunch and a beach umbrella and celebrate the Summer Solstice with an afternoon of music at the first annual Fête de la Musique at East Beach in Norfolk on June 21 from 1 to 7 pm.

The festival is free and open to the general public. It features 16 performers and bands on two stages at East Beach, located at 4550 East Beach Drive (formerly East Ocean View Ave.). The Fête also features roving musicians, storytelling and a pétanque tournament for those who can’t resist an opportunity to try this classical French game. Food vendors, including the Williamsburg Winery, will provide refreshments. Parking is also free.

Stage 1 – East Beach Bay Front Club, 4450 East Beach Dr., Norfolk

1:00 pm Fire & Ice, Barbershop Quartet
1:40 pm Tangent, Folk
2:20 pm Track McCreary, Cajun and storytelling
3:00 pm Chapitre de Grasse Chorus, French Songs
3:40 pm Mark Lawrence, Singer/Songwriter
4:20 pm Muckrakes, Americana/Folk/Bluegrass
5:20 pm Robin Welch, Classical Guitar
5:55 pm Jerry Sowers, Singer/Songwriter
6:30 pm Narissa Bond, Singer/Songwriter

Stage 2 – Pavilion Stage, Hammock Lane at 28th Bay St.

1:00 pm York River Symphony, Classical Violins
2:00 pm The Academy of Music Suzuki Violin Program, Children’s Violins
2:45 pm Blue Light District, Blues
3:45 pm Fat Tony, Swing, Blues, Americana
4:45 pm Straight Forward, Jazz
5:45 pm Bobby BlackHat Blues Band, Blues
6:30 pm The Two-Five, Rock/Alternative/Blues

Hey Muckrakes......what kind of music do you play?

Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, June 11, 2009 11:21 AM

Hey Muckrakes......what kind of music do you play?

As funny as this may sound, I get this question a lot and I'm never sure how to answer.

Keep in mind, I hate labeling/genre'ing music. I think it cheapens what most band's are doing.....but for the sake of giving someone an idea of what we do play.

Dirty south, corn-squeezins Americana
Bluegrass inspired twang-n-roll
American Blue Collar Grassy Rock

This can on and on.....

If you didn't notice, I stayed away from the word "country". That word has been so bastardized by the likes of Kenny Ches.....(fuck, I can't even type his name)......let's just say country radio. It's rather unfortunate seeing as there is some great country music out there.

Let me ask you this; if you've ever heard us, describe "our" music! How would you tell the uninitiated what our sound is?

It's Time For a Ruckus!

Posted by The Muckrakes , Wednesday, May 20, 2009 3:32 PM

It's Time For a Ruckus
by Alfredo Torres

Once again it's time for a ruckus. Rock and Roll Ruckus 7 is going on this Thursday at the South Beach Grill which is on the corner of Norfolk Ave and Birdneck Rd. For those of you who have never been to the Ruckus, you don't know what your missing. For those of you who have never heard of the Rock and Roll Ruckus, you really need to catch up and learn something.

The Rock and Roll Ruckus is a show that Ted Dean of Shifty South, the house band of the Ruckus, puts together every few months. This night is all about showcasing some of the best alt-country/hillbilly/bluesy/honky-tonkin' kick ass Hampton Roads bands, and the show never seems to disappoint.

This show has always been a kick ass time which in the past has featured such bands as Rylo, Augustine and The Pawnshop Lifters. It has never been a disappointment having provided great music in a place that seems custom made for good times, The South Beach Grill. This go around features Shifty South with none other than the sexy honky tonk outlaw angel Gina Dalmas and the masters of "newbilly" music, The Muckrakes.

Doors open at 9pm and there is no cover. 21 and up only. If you guys are looking for something to do that is sure to be an incredible start to your memorial day weekend, then get down to the South Beach Grill for the Rock and Roll Ruckus 7, and check out this trio of hard drinking, hard living, hard loving and hard playing musicians. It's gonna be awesome baby.

CD Finished! Can we get a Woop-Woop?!

Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, May 7, 2009 2:06 PM

Jon, Steve and Cory hit the studio with sound engineer, Patrick Walsh and put the finishing touches on our self-titled CD. The CD will be available on itunes, amazon, napster and other on-line retailers within a few days so keep your ears open.

We're putting the CD on-line BEFORE we start releasing to as hard-copy for easy, fast, cheap downloads straight into your ipod, iphone, computer or mp3 player.

If you don't want to buy the CD off itunes, you gotta wait for the CD hard-copy version. You'll be able to pick it up at your favorite local music store, order it on-line or get it at a show a few weeks AFTER we release it digitally, but don't worry, we'll keep you up to date on when the hard-copy release date will be.

In the meantime, head on over to our myspace page and listen to the two songs that we recorded live at The Capital Ale Music House in RVA.

VA Pilot Write up on The Muckrakes

Posted by The Muckrakes 2:00 PM

The VA-Pilot featured THE MUCKRAKES in the "BACKSTAGE" section of the paper today. Here's the write up.


Posted by The Muckrakes , Saturday, April 4, 2009 5:32 PM

The Muckrakes uploaded two new songs on myspace from a show at The Capital Ale House Music Hall in Richmond, VA. The songs were recorded live and are TRAILER PARK LOVE SONG and THAT'S ALRIGHT MAMA.

So head off to our myspace page at and take a listen and be sure to drop us a line.

The Sea Level Song Writer's Festival.

Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, April 2, 2009 2:22 PM

The Muckrakes have been asked to play at The 2nd Annual Sea Level Song Writer's Festival on FRIDAY, APRIL 10th at 5:30 in Norfolk (Ghent). We will be outside in Ghent busking acoustically.

What's that?! You don't know what a busker is?! Well, Buskers are that rare breed of street entertainer in search of the best place or "pitch" to perform their artistic endeavor. And busking is a great way to bring the spirit of the Sea Level Singer/Songwriter Festival to Ghent. The Muckrakes will be scheduled to play in pre-designated areas on 21st Street and Colley Avenue throughout the Festival weekend. So bring yourself, your kids and rest of the family (as well as your friends) out and look for us! So c'mon out and listen to the band play that ol' timey music the way it was meant to be played, stripped bare and to the bones. Did we mention that it's FREE?! yep, that's right! FREE!

Jonatha Brooke headlines the Sea Level Singer/Songwriter Festival and Ghent locations will host TAO concerts, events, workshops April 9-11, 2009, with The Muckrakes on April 10th at 5:30.

Tidewater Arts Outreach will also raffle off a Gibson J45 True Vintage guitar (MSRP $3,847).

Gibson’s new J-45 True Vintage captures the genuine spirit of Gibson’s most popular acoustic. Nicknamed “The Workhorse” for its simple, rock-solid construction, the new J-45 True Vintage—hand-made by Gibson Acoustic in Bozeman, Montana—offers the build, materials, looks, and tone of this legendary guitar as it was the day it was first introduced in 1942. This new model stays true to the original in every way, including the same round-shoulder dreadnought body design, with a top made from AA-grade Sitka spruce, custom vintage top bracing, and back and sides constructed from pattern-grade mahogany from Honduras. Raffle tickets are only $10.00!!!

We'll see ya'll on the street of Ghent. Stop by us and say, "Howdy".

The Muckrakes Newest Member, Say "Hello" to our Little Friend.

Posted by The Muckrakes , Tuesday, March 31, 2009 4:42 PM

It's been a while since The Muckrakes have posted a blog, so we decided it's about time to do just that. A few changes have been made to The Muckrakes, our biggest change is that we've added a new fiddle player named Steve Campbell. Steve is a great musician and kicks that fiddle like no one's business. By day, he's a music teacher by night he's hell-bent on firing strings and rousing bows and plays various instruments for the band as well. Make sure you stop by his myspace page and say, "Howdy". He can be found at Give him a big Muckrakes "Woo-Hoo!"

Our bassist, Billy is safely back from gallivanting across the UK. He spent a week on vacation in England. He's back and it's time to hit the pavement!

Speaking of pavement, the band also has a few more gigs lined up. The gig dates are posted below. The Muckrakes will be playing from the capital city of Richmond, VA (RVA) to the shores of Virginia Beach within a few short weeks of each other, so there's no reason NOT to come out and see us. We are booking NC for the months of July and August now as well.

April.09.09--COZZY’S (Newport News, VA)
April.11.09--PLAZA BOWL (RVA)
April.17.09--TANNER’S CREEK (Norfolk, VA)
May.15.09--THE TAPHOUSE (Norfolk, VA)
May.28.09--SCOTTY QUIXX (Norfolk, VA)
June.13.09--BAR NONE (Virgina Beach, VA)
June.26.09--THE SOUTHEND PUB (Virginia Beach, VA)
June.27.09--PLAZA BOWL (RVA)

The band has also signed onto Please check us out at this new website as it has various tools that and integrations that other social networking websites do not have. The Muckrakes can be found

You can follow The Muckrakes on Twitter too! Visit us at to keep up with the band and all our members. We keep all of these websites updated on a daily basis, so finding the band is no problem.

Remember to spread the word!


Posted by The Muckrakes , Friday, March 20, 2009 4:08 PM

The Muckrakes hit #1 on local / regional charts on Woo-Hoo!
Eh, we know, it's a small feat to accomplish, but it makes us feel good all the same and just felt like tootin' our horn.

The Muckrakes now

Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, March 12, 2009 3:29 PM

In this day and age of communication, we've taken upon ourselves to get a little more involved and added the band to

What is In case you don't know, Twitter is a service for friends, family, and co–workers, fans and bands to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing?

So sign up for and follow The Muckrakes. It's fast, free and keeps you in the know.

Here's The Muckrakes Twitter profile:

Random Stuff

Posted by The Muckrakes , Monday, March 9, 2009 11:59 AM

The band would like to send a note out thanking everyone that came by The Southend Pub in Virginia Beach, Saturday night. We had a good time and hope you did as well.

Our next local show will be at Clutch Bar & Grille in Va. Beach, at 1485 General Booth Blvd Ste #120 on Friday, March 20th.

Then it's off to the Capital City of Richmond, VA on Sat. March 21st to play at The Capital Ale Music Hall. The Capital Ale Music Hall is located at 623 East Main Street.

We hope to see ya'll at either show. Don't be shy, c'mon up and introduce yourselves to us.

We're working on our CD with Partrick Walsh, that should be out within the next few months...hopefully sooner. It will be available at concerts, on-line and at your favorite record shop. We'll keep you posted on the release date.

March 7th at The Southend Pub in VA. Beach, VA.

Posted by The Muckrakes , Sunday, February 22, 2009 11:59 AM

Bye Bye Portfolio Weekly Magazine, we hardly knew ye.

Posted by The Muckrakes , Friday, February 20, 2009 2:19 PM

Word out on the street is that Portfolio Weekly Magazine (PFW) will no longer be published in print form. PFW is Hampton Roads ONLY Art, Music and Culture Magazine. It's equivalent of NYC's Village Voice (but smaller due to the area's population). It's sad to see the magazine go out of print form because it played an important part within the entertainment regional industry.

PFW has nominated The Muckrakes as "BEST AMERICANA BAND" for the region, and had planned an awards ceremony at The Jewish Mother, but due to the demise of the magazine, the ceremony has been put on the chopping block.

We can wish that they continue to print this important weekly newspaper and if they publishers don't, we hope that another publisher / company comes along and sees the value of providing our area with another magazine like it.

Woo-Hoo Video (Live)

Posted by The Muckrakes , Sunday, February 8, 2009 3:23 PM

The Muckrakes hit The Taphouse in Norfolk, VA. on Feb. 6th. Here's a short video that was taped of the band performing "Woo-Hoo". So scream and sing along with The Muckrakes and enjoy.


Posted by The Muckrakes , Thursday, February 5, 2009 1:34 PM


Submitted by Cindy Johnson

I decided to change my pace a little and commit to an evening of a wildly growing brand of music called "Americana". It's a little folk, a little country with some bluegrass mixed in for flavor. I keep hearing this type of sound called "roots" music, but to me, it's all relative to keeping it real. No gimmicks, no weird outfits, just good music from yesterday and today. That set the pace throughout the evening with two very talented and spirited bands - one a duo, the other a small army.

Gray Gurkin and the Lost Souls started off the evening. They were missing one Lost Soul reducing them to a duo with their drummer, Chip Farnsworth, and singer, guitarist, Gray Gurkin, who has carved out quite a name for himself as a solo artist, but he obviously thrives with his band, no matter how small.

The Lost Souls are very professional and know how to put on a show. Gray Gurkin interacts with the audience and makes them feel appreciated. The originals songs are both upbeat and spirited, even the sad ones. Gray Gurkin has a powerful voice and he's not afraid to use it, coupled with that Dwight Yokam bounce when he plays, and you have a great front man and a wonderful sounding band. All the members of The Lost Souls are from Virginia and have played with many other successful bands through
the years and it shows. The bands original songs include "Matchbox", "Wildflower", and "Sunday Morning".

Band Members:
Gray Gurkin: Lead vocals, guitar
Chip Farnsworth: Drums
Turtle: Bass and backing vocals

The Muckrakes took the stage by storm a while later and I could barely believe the head count on that stage. The band has 7 current members who all play a variety of different instruments, including my personal favorite, the lap steel guitar and rub board. It gave the band personality to play such vibrant instruments and the combination of harmonies and blend of music swept you away to another time when things were simple. I think this type of music is really needed right now to get our priorities back in line and see the simple beauty in things. That's what this music gives you, simple beauty, and I was definitely in need of some.

The Muckrakes formed in October of 2008 in Newport News, VA after some lineup changes have their current band. Their songs include "Young and Crazy", "What Does She Have to Say" and "Until They're Gone".

Band Members:
Melissa Troutman: vocals
Matt Minguez - violin
Jon Owings - vocals, mandolin, banjo
Dave Jackson - drums
Cory Nealon - Lap steel guitar, dobro, guitar
Spider Turner - guitar
Billy England - bass


Posted by The Muckrakes , Monday, February 2, 2009 2:53 PM

Lucky Eddie from Heavy Rebel Weekender / and his lovely wife met us at The Triple on Friday, Jan 30th in RVA and took a few shots of the band. We decided to post them. If you weren't at the show, you missed a good one. Don't worry RVA, we'll be back!

Young & Crazy / What Does She Have To Say

Posted by The Muckrakes , Sunday, January 25, 2009 8:29 PM

We uploaded 2 new songs that we'd much appreciate you listening to. The link is provided below or you can head over to our myspace page at and listen to them.

The links are below:



THE MUCKRAKES: Rustbelt Town Video

Posted by The Muckrakes , Friday, January 23, 2009 7:54 PM

The Muckrakes hit Cozzy's in Newport News, VA. Here's a live video of the band playing "Rustbelt Town". Hope ya enjoy!

Tanner's Creek Gig

Posted by The Muckrakes , Saturday, January 10, 2009 2:49 PM

The Muckrakes graced the stage at Tanner's Creek in Norfolk, VA on Friday night (01.09.2009). It was our first show of the New Year. Here are a few shots from the show. Enjoy!

The Muckrakes have been Nominated for Best Americana Act.

Posted by The Muckrakes , Tuesday, January 6, 2009 11:48 AM

Portfolio Weekly Magazine, has nominated The Muckrakes as "BEST AMERICANA ACT" for 2008. It's needless to say that we are happy and humbled by this nomination. Just being NOMINATED as one of the top bands for all of Tidewater/ Hampton Roads/ The 7 Cities, is within itself, a thrill.

We'd like to take this time to ask for your vote. All you have to do is go to PFW's website and cast a vote for us. That's it.

The URL is:

Thanks for your time and support and good luck to all bands and fellow musicians that were nominated for this award.

The view from behind.......

Posted by Dave , Monday, January 5, 2009 2:45 PM

.......the drum set. Well, our show opening for Formula (cool bunch of fellers) was pretty good seeing as we were down 3 Rakes and Doc had 2 torn hammy's. Despite the pain, he powered through........with the help of some liquid painkillers. Especially nice was that many friends and family members made it out to see us and provide moral support, etc. Got a lot of good feedback and I think we made at least a few new Muckheads in the process. Thanks to all!!

At times I find it a bit disconcerting being at the back of the stage (and behind 6 other people) because I can't see how the crowd is reacting to what we're doing. I guess it's also a good thing if we're getting stuff thrown at us.

Well, can't wait to rock Tanner's Creek proper this Friday night. Hope to see you there!

G'nite Virginia where ever you are........

'Til They're Gone.

Posted by The Muckrakes , Sunday, January 4, 2009 2:32 PM

A little song recorded by a few fellows in THE MUCKRAKES entitled "Until They're Gone". Enjoy!


Posted by The Muckrakes , Saturday, January 3, 2009 12:03 PM

Like the band's name implies, The Muckrakes are here to help you sift through your problems and, just maybe, provide an anodyne that is necessary to survive the modern world.

The group may have formed in the backwoods of Newport News, VA. in October 2008, but its lineage goes back much further. It started in disparate parts of the country, where, as wide-eyed kids, they slapped their knees listening to everything from Leadbelly, Dolly Parton to The Dead Milkmen, Medeski, Martin & Wood as well as The Clash.

The soon-to-be band members learned to play various instruments; mandolin, guitar, violin, bass, harmonica, lap steel, drums, piano, banjo and, most importantly, voice.They honed their chops in various bands in basements and garages, and soon found themselves among bluesmen, classical music buffs, snotty punks, bluegrass pickers and shaggy hippies. Their journeys took them from fine concert halls to renowned punk clubs. For various reasons, their journeys also brought them to Newport News.

The group was called together by singer, mandolinist, banjo-picker, guitarist, Jon Owings, drummer Dave “Gravy” Jackson, and guitarist Mike "Spider" Turner. Later came Billy England on bass. England, a veteran of the Hampton Roads music scene saw what apparently no one else did - or at least what no one had the gumption to do anything about. "There are no alligator-wrestlin', moonshine-drinking, fist-fightin' Americana acts around here, " he said. With that in mind, the call was put out in September. After some lineup shuffling, the band's current configuration came together a month later with the addition of Melissa "Jeanne Butterbean" Troutman who joined the fold adding her angelic, strong vocals and song writing skills, Matt "Doc Knuckles" Minguez, who is the band's "Brian Jones". Matt handles any instrument tossed his way, but is usually found with a violin strapped to his chin. Rounding out the group is Cory Nealon who puts the pedal to the metal on lap steel, dobro and guitar.

Together, the group has found the right combination of sweet and sinister, of power and weakness, of new and old. In other words, they're just trying make sense of the world, having a fun time doing it and inspire others to do the same.

DEC 27. 2009

Posted by The Muckrakes , Friday, January 2, 2009 5:30 PM

Only 4 of the 7 members of The Muckrakes could make the gig at The Taphouse on Dec 27, 2008, but we played it anyway and rocked the house. Were you there? You should of been as it was the last show of 2008! Ah, don't worry if ya didn't make it, you catch us later on at the first show for 2009 at Tanner's Creek in Norfolk, VA.