Mama Hagglin
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Mama Hagglin

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"Orange County band Mama Hagglin: Vibe"

Mama Hagglin is a four-piece band from Orange County. You can learn something about this band before you even listen to the first track. The latest release from this band Vibe is released on Bellybutton Window Recordings. You'll see why that is such a fitting name for this recording company on "The Wedding Song" (if not before. There is some heavy-duty Hendrix influence in the guitar of this tune. Speaking of heavy-duty, if it's a heavy-duty theme you're looking for, check out the song "Find My Way" in which the singer hopes to be able to avoid the demons such as drugs.

This is a band steeped in the tradition of classic rock and jam bands. I mean, the kind of classic rock that makes you want to bust out your air guitar and pump your fist as you sing along. "End of the Line" is a great example of such a song. So is "Half Dome."

There are also some mellower tunes such as "Let It Ride," whose overall feel is reminiscent of The Band. What else can I say about it? It is just a well-crafted song.

Mama Hagglin isn't afraid to mix it up from the standard 2 guitars, bass, and drums. This album features horns, cello, organ, harmonica, mandolin and some great harmony vocals. Mama doesn't cheat its listeners either. Vibe contains 15 tracks and is a solid hour long. And in the liner notes, the band mentions that it "didn't have any help from the almighty record companies to get this recording done. We record and package our own CDs at home, and handle all aspects of promotion ourselves." If you are a fan of classic rock and a fan of DIY independent bands, this is an album you should check out. Just put it on, crank up the volume, and enjoy the ride.

"Featured Artist"

Interview with Mama Hagglin
by Sarah Powell

On the weekend of the 4th of July, I had an opportunity to interview members of Mama Hagglin – Jeff Porter, Jerry Adamowicz, and Jimmy Palmer. Jeff, founder of Mama Hagglin, is lead singer and lead guitarist. Jerry on bass and vocals is the newest member of Mama Hagglin. As Jerry has his own recording studio in California, he worked on the production of Mama Hagglin’s latest album, Vibe. Jimmy on piano, organ and vocals joined Mama Hagglin late 2007 when the band realized it was time “to add some keys”. Sandy Hancock on the drums and vocals joined Mama Hagglin shortly after playing the drums with Jeff at a mutual friend’s wake ceremony. On the 4th of July, the Block Party at Huntington Beach, California was the first live performance for the current line up of Mama Hagglin. Each member coming from well-known punk rock bands, returned to his passion of rock music like “he listened to as a child”.

In 2003, Mama Hagglin was born. “The name was born, actually, before the band” explains Jeff as he reminisces the time. One day when Jeff and Jonny Phish, a friend and bass player, were jamming in the studio, they talked about Jimi Hendrix’s blues compilation record. In one of the live performances, Jimi Hendrix walks up to the microphone and mutters the words “mama mama hagglin”. “Listen closely, and you can hear it.” In search of “a name with nostalgic ties to the era they [Jeff and Jonny] enjoyed, Mama Hagglin was born”, Jeff states.

Mama Hagglin brings together an eclectic compilation of rock music that brings me back. From songs with a strong pro-peace message as ‘War’ to melodious ballads as ‘The Goodbye Waltz’ that reaches out and grabs you by the heartstrings. From high energy songs as ‘Pushing Up Daisies’ to songs with a pop rock sound as ‘End of the Line’. When I recognized that because of Mama Hagglin’s eclectic sound each song is a new story in the lyrics and the music, Jimmy responded that “it’s nice to take a trip with the album” – rather than listening to the same style of song. Each of these songs and many more can be heard on Vibe.

Along with the core members, other musicians join in bringing together the band’s eclectic sound, such as a 14- year-old cellist with amazing technique from a local high school, a string section, and a horn section. As Jimmy shares his passion for music with his family, he encourages his children to find their own passion in music. One of Jimmy’s daughters even got the opportunity to contribute her musical talent in Vibe. Another regular addition to the band’s sound is Tetsuya “Tex” Nakamura nicknamed “The Weeping Willow” who is a well-known harmonica player.

Music speaks differently to each member of Mama Hagglin and to the fans. In “The Goodbye Waltz”, Jeff wrote about his childhood; he did not have a great relationship with his dad who was abusive. Despite the abuse, Jeff spent his life trying to get his dad to appreciate and accept him. It wasn’t until he turned forty years old that he realized “it’s never going to change”. It was time to say “goodbye to all the bad feelings...carried inside” and move on with his life. Jeff also spoke of a performance in which Mama Hagglin played “The Goodbye Waltz”. An older lady who was standing in the back of the room caught his attention. As Mama Hagglin played, this lady was drawn closer and closer to the stage. When the song ended, she was no longer seen, until after the performance that night. She walked up to Jeff and began to cry as she shared her story with him. She explained that this song reminded her of her husband who died while fighting in the war soon after they were married. He always spoke of redemption for what people were fighting. This song meant something to her and it touched her heart. When speaking with Jerry about the eclectic style of music that Mama Hagglin performs, he commented that he normally enjoys the high energy rock music; but “the songs, “Let It Ride” and “The Goodbye Waltz” really hit home” with him as they are “very strong songs.”

Up to this point, Jeff has written the lyrics based on his personal or friends’ experiences. Jeff states that Mama Hagglin now has three additional band mates who he feels have more talent than he has and can work together to carry Mama to that next level. He looks forward to creating new music and lyrics with the band and building on each others strengths of Jerry’s music composition experience, Jimmy’s lyric writing and music talents, and Sandy’s music and percussion skills.

Though, Mama Hagglin is currently based out of California, they look forward to taking Mama on the road in the near future - even for a tour of Europe.

Keep on rocking, Mama Hagglin! -

"The more I listen, the more I like it."

I think the more I listen to some of the stuff off of Vibe, the more I like it. "Pushing Up Daisies" and "Find My Way" are becoming those infectious sorts of songs that get stuck in your head really easily. I also love the hell out of your nice little instrumental, "Half Dome." But really, I still enjoy the whole album quite heartily, and I'm still listening to it pretty frequently. Also, I wanted to obtain a physical copy of the album in the form of a CD...but the only place I've seen it is in the form of one single used copy on Was the CD only in print very briefly? - listener, kaaaaz , (Aug 20, 2008)


2003- Live 03 First recording of Mama Hagglin
2003- Live at Adamos (DVD)
2005- Take One (3 song demo)
2008- The Goodbye Waltz (3 song single from VIBE)
2008- VIBE



Mama Hagglin played their first show in 2003 at a small club in Long Beach, CA. Founder, Jeff Porter was singing for the world famous punk rock band China White, when suddenly the band hit a wall and found themselves on permanent hiatus. Jeff, needing to fill the void started jamming with friend Jonny Phish, who played a little bass. After a short time, Jeff had come up with a new set of songs that were much closer to the style of music he grew up listening to, rather than the punk rock he'd been laying for more than a decade and a half. Jeff placed a call to his friend and former band mate Sandy Hancock (Mechanics/Adolescents) and explained what he had. Sandy also had just left his band (22 Jacks) and was excited. The band was
born that day (not sure what day it was...). After some rehearsing the boys went out to try Mama Hagglin on for size. The response has been great, and the band has been fortunate enough to play with some really great artists such as Johnny Winter, .38 Special, Ten Years After, Eric Burdon & The Animals, Mountain, Beth Hart, to name a few.
in 2004 Jonny Phish left the band and Jeff asked another former band mate Mitch McNally (The Glory Holes/Ch3/ Tazers) to take the spot. Then in late 2007, Mama picked up piano/organist Jimmy Palmer. This brought a whole new dimension to the band, and extra freedom for Jeff to front the band. In early 2008 the band changed bass players and welcomed Jerry Adamowicz to the family. Jerry instantly took the bass by the horns and elevated the sound of Mama to the the next level. The band can now spit out four part hamonies, and a wall of sound that blankets your ears with candy, and thunder, like the albums from the past use to do. From hard hitting, heavy songs like "Love" Spell, to trip out and relax songs with the all the candy for your ears like "Concrete Lenny" to slow tender ballads such as "Let it ride" and The Wedding song" Mama Hagglin has brought back something that's so important right now. "The good vibe", They tell stories that folks relate to and can understand. A regular addition to the bands sound is the beautiful sound of Tetsuya "Tex" Nakamura, AKA The Weeping Willow (former harmonica player for the band WAR). The band can be found playing venues small and large, and always having a great time of it.