As mentioned Monday on the Independent Weekly‘s music blog Scan, it looks like there’s another local music festival coming to Chapel Hill. BEN DAVIS, formerly of Milemarker and now of Ben Davis & the Jetts, says he was looking to book a back-to-school show at the Cat’s Cradle. The dates he was considering happened to coincide to Cradle owner Frank Heath’s planned slot for the Carrboro club’s yearly set of benefits for the Piedmont Wildlife Center. He offered Davis the slot as a sort of double benefitto raise student awareness of the local music scene and to raise money for the center. The fundraising festival runs from Friday, Aug. 31 to Sunday, Sept. 2. The list of confirmed bands includes ROMAN CANDLE, THE STRUGGLERS, THE KINGSBURY MANX, HOBEX, TRANSPORTATION and BIG FAT GAP, and Davis is still in talks with several others.


A new, free, Charlotte-based music magazine, SHUFFLE, will make its statewide premiere early next month. The goal of the magazine, says Editor in Chief John Schacht, is to present “well-written and thoughtful perspectives on one of the nation’s most fertile music scenes from those who live in it.” Schacht has been writing about music for Harp, Paste, All Music Guide and several other publications since 2000, and he served as music editor for Charlotte’s Creative Loafing from 2003 to 2005. Schacht recruited a dozen current or former Carolina music scribes for the first issue, including Asheville-based Harp Managing Editor Fred Mills and longtime Independent Weekly contributor Chris Parker. The first issue will include a profile of MERGE RECORDS, a road diary with BAND OF HORSES, an essay on the successful marketing of THE AVETT BROTHERS, and a collection of regional record reviews and band profiles. “Hootie-free reading,” promises Schacht. Shuffle is funded by MORISEN RECORDS owner CHUCK MORRISON (www.morisen.com). [Full disclosure: Independent Weekly Music Editor Grayson Currin is also a contributor to the debut Shuffle.]


Andrew Blass, keyboardist for Durham band RED COLLAR, has started a record label with his wife, Danielle Blass. They say the idea of starting a label came after Red Collar played South by Southwest earlier this year: Blass stumbled into the showcase for New York’s French Kiss Records and was blown away. “The overall team mentality (similar bands with similar sounds, etc.) was really appealing,” says Andrew, who says the label, POWER TEAM RECORDS, is also interested in high-energy indie rock bands.

The first Power Team release, HAMMER NO MORE THE FINGERS‘ self-titled debut, will be released Nov. 16. “Our initial goal was to sign Hammer No More the Fingers because we love them,” says Blass. “We have two goals now. One is to establish a reputation so that great bands seek us out. And two is to try to turn over every possible stone to figure out how rock bands like Red Collar and Hammer can financially sustain themselves.”