WOW our web site editor went over the top with that poster.
With so many great albums albums arriving at the moment the choice for Album of the Month was very difficult so using democracy I decided and the others followed.
We still have not replaced our overly expensive reviewer so if you want to read a great review Google Liza Ohlback – Mercy Train, that’s what Google is for and cheaper than paying for a reviewer. Below are a couple of tracks from album so you can all review it yourselves.
Originally from Tasmania , Liza started out in Classical music playing Cello
and singing in her mum’s Gospel singing group. She grew up in the Blue Mountains
supporting touring bands at a very young age, and then she moved to Sydney where
her love of artists such as Ann Peebles, Gladys Knight and Tony Joe White led her immerse
herself in the Blues, Jazz, Soul and Funk scene.
This triple Chain Award winner has been a force on the Blues Scene for years now, with her distinctive style Of Jazz laced Blues with a Gospel spirit. She has a stunning voice inspired by the great Southern singers including Etta James, Mavis Staples and Aretha Franklin, and her performances are embellished with witty tales and wrapped up with emotionally driven performances like that of a 1940’s Torch singer.
Her last Album “Give you Hell” reached no 2 on the Australian Blues Charts and saw her as a finalist in Australian Blues artist of the year, and got to no 12 in the UK. She has also performed at the Sydney opera House for the Billy Holiday 100 year anniversary and the Ella Fitzgerald 100 year anniversary and played the lead of Janis Joplin in the successful Theatre Rockumentary Pearl – The Janis Joplin Story.
Her new CD”Mercy Train” was released in late November to rave reviews and in 2019 for the rest of the world to enjoy, and is now no 1 on the Australian Blues Charts – a mix of New Orleans Blues/Jazz with plenty of Sass and funk, a wicked Brass section , Gospel style Harmonies and featuring some of the finest musicians around, including Internationally renowned organ Whiz Clayton Doley (Harry Manx) and Rick Melick (Jo Bonamassa) who cowrote some of the songs plus Eric Rasmussen (Heatwave) plus the Mercy Train Gospel singers.
of the world, and is now no 1 on the Australian Blues Charts – a mix of New Orleans Blues/Jazz with plenty of Sass and funk, a wicked Brass section , Gospel style Harmonies and featuring some of the finest musicians around, including Internationally renowned organ Whiz Clayton Doley (Harry Manx) and Rick Melick (Jo Bonamassa) who cowrote some of the songs plus Eric Rasmussen (Heatwave) plus the Mercy Train Gospel singers.
Yes Kelly Slot (as they are known here at TME.fm) are back and in style, probably their finest work to date but only been listening and playing on radio a couple of weeks so the final verdict is not in yet.
Released on the 17th of MAY “Can’t Take My Soul” is already climbing the charts and heading for a Top 5 spot real soon, thanks in part to Betsie the Blind Raccoon, all the radio stations playing the album and of course Ms. Zirbes and band members great work getting the Self-Released album out for the world to enjoy.
We finally decided to get rid of our expensive one word reviewer and use the review provided by the PR Company and written by Rick J Bowen, the king of Blues reviews.
Los Angeles-based Kelly’s Lot celebrates 25 years of delivering West Coast Soul with a Texas Heart, an eclectic mix of blues, roots, rock & Americana with their 14th album, “Can’t Take My Soul,” containing 12 original compositions that highlights Kelly Zirbes’ smokin’ hot alto. The mix of original songs written by Kelly and her longtime partner in crime, guitarist Perry Robertson, speaks truth to the issues of the day, from our political climate and world struggles to tender matters of the heart, real-life inspiration and tragedy. Kelly Z opens the album namechecking all her heroes from Muddy to Koko, and Buddy to Etta, on the rockin’ number ‘All I Ever Want Is The Blues.’ She then gets right to the point urging us all to “Don’t Give Up” on the political rebuke ‘All Hope Ain’t Lost.’ The gently swinging blues ‘Alyssa’ was inspired by a young woman born with a terminal illness, who defied the odds and lived to be 23 years old and became a medical pioneer as one of the world’s first to receive gene therapy for Canavan Disease. This song will live on as a loving tribute to her inner strength.
Eddie Baytos joins the crew on accordion and washboard for the Cajun dance party anthem ‘Woe Is Me,’ adding authentic Louisiana spice to the rue. The testament of love, ‘Safe And Warm,’ is delivered on a soft bed of acoustic underpinnings deftly delivered by this veteran band. The notorious French bluesman Jean-François Thomas (recorded by Martial Semonsut at Studio La Vallée in the Auvergne region of France) joins Kelly for a scalding duet ‘Rise Up (Leve-Toi)’ sparing with her in French and English about the fire burning deep inside forbidden love and the Revolution. Frank Hinojosa adds some greasy blues harp to the slinky R&B groove of ‘Broke Myself.’ The acoustic driven ballad, ‘Let It Breathe,’ has that distinct bittersweet and dusty Laurel Canyon feel only Southern California musicians know how to deliver.
Kelly opens a vein and exposes all her depth on the dynamic call for redemption and self-preservation called ‘Dirt,’ a simple title for an expansive and complicated song. She then goes back to her folk-singer roots on the sweet optimistic hymn ‘Little Bit Of This,’ before busting out the rabble-rousing surf rock ‘Can’t Take My Soul.’ We are transported to a sidewalk café in Paris for the final track of the album ‘Mon Ami.’ The lovely encore reveals a softer side of Kelly Z as she serenades us eloquently in French and then translates the images of love and devotion in English with graceful ease.
“Can’t Take My Soul” fully demonstrates the skills and variety in the repertoire Kelly’s Lot have developed over two and half decades performing as an acoustic duo, trio, an electric 5 to 8-piece that are now a mainstay on the Southern California music scene.
Rick J Bowen
‘All Hope Ain’t Lost is one of the new songs from our CD, ‘Can’t take My Soul’. The CD version has background vocals and B3 keys. Get your copy at www.KellysLot.com
One of the best parts of working with Blind Raccoon is they provide everything, not just the music but reviews, biographies and pretty pictures.
Kelly’s Lot was formed in 1994 by Kelly Zirbes (sounds like “service” – likes to go by Kelly Z), a folk singer/songwriter with a heart for the blues. With 14 albums and lots of touring in the USA and Europe, the band will celebrate 25 years since the first night they hit the stage at the Roxy in Hollywood. Kelly Z met soundman, Perry Robertson, in 1996 who soon produced their “Live At The Troubadour” album. Within a year he joined the band, started writing songs with Kelly Z and added the Southern Rock and Texas influences that have shaped their sound. As a duo or band, they have played coffee shops, theaters, festivals, clubs, house concerts and a variety of events.
In the last 15 years they have created a 5 to 8-piece band that is well respected on the American blues scene. Some of the larger festivals they have played are Waterfront Blues, Simi Valley Cajun and Blues Festival, Ventura County Blues Festival, Lavaudieu Music Festival, to name just a few. In France, Jean Francois Thomas joined Kelly’s Lot to play in front of 18,000 for the Nuits De Sologne Festival.
Their songs have been heard in movies and television and covered by other artists. Kelly Z is currently working on songs for a couple film projects while still grabbing some inspiration from her fans on Facebook. Challenging them to look in their hearts and share just one word, she then challenges herself to choose a word and write a song in two hours. Perry Robertson, who shares the band leader title with Kelly Z, has recorded and produced most of the band’s music including the soon to be released ‘Can’t Take My Soul’. Releasing on May 17, 2019, the new CD features a lot of Blues but with a couple Folk and Roots/Rock additions. It’s a journey of messages, inspirations and some toe tapping rhythms. Mostly featuring a 4 piece of guitar, bass, drums and vocals, the CD also offers some accordion, harmonica, keys and even a Kelly Z whistle. As a duo, trio or 5 to 8-piece band they always pack a lot of energy while still getting to the heart of the listener.
Kelly and her band have opened for Tommy Castro, Shemekia Copeland, Marcia Ball, John Mayall, Curtis Salgado, Coco Montoya, to name just a few, and have hosted blues events for charities and for fellow blues musicians. With the support of European fans, the band toured across Belgium, France, Germany, England, Scotland, and The Netherlands.
So there you have all the inside info of the band a great review and pretty pictures, what more do you want?
Social media links, ok.
I will see what I can do about that.
Not the usual run of the mill interview?
You are a demanding reader but we will try our best for you.
An interview with Perry not Kelly Slot?
I don’t know what Kelly Z will say about that, I have it from a good source she is “a bit of a Tom Boy” she might come over to Spain and give me a good slapping!
Listen reader just go listen to Kelly Slot on TME.FM will you.
Received this excellent album today and it will be getting lots of play time at TME.FM Radio.
Thanks to James at Highlander Records for making it available.
“Straight up blues rock guitar choogle that makes you wonder which came first, this music or the beer. With mostly originals leading the way, this is a fine example of how frat parties sound when Otis Day and the Knights are unavailable. Fun party stuff that does the job quite nicely.”~ CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher Copyright 2019 Midwest Record
“A singing, song writing, guitar playing, showman sensation with great chops and a really hot band.”~ Modern Drummer Magazine
“…raucous, gritty wailing and upbeat blues…”~ Laura Dobbins, ATOMIC Magazine
“Start with honest emotions, mix with a selection of the finest support musicians you will find, season the whole dish with some New York attitude and get ready for some of the tastiest blues ever to be served up.”
~ Joe Grandwilliams Good Times Magazine
~Kerry Kearney’s style, music from the “Psychedelta”, is his own brand containing an upbeat mix of American Blues & Roots. The sounds Kerry creates from his vintage, stock and custom made guitars are as unique as his song writing and original melodies. His wailing, foot tapping style of blues, driven by tasty, inspired guitar riffs, electrifying slide and infectious rhythms, has allowed Kerry to amass a huge loyal following. The KKB have continued to experience an overwhelming, positive response over the airwaves, especially when performing live.
The Kerry Kearney Band recently celebrated 20 years to a sold-out show at the Boulton Center in Bay Shore, NY.~Kerry was voted “Best Guitarist” & “Bluesman of the Year” & is the recipient of the prestigious Long Island Sound Award (L.I.S.A.) from the LI Music Hall of Fame and most recently he and his band mates were each inducted into the New York Blues Hall of Fame.
~Kerry Kearney has toured nationally & internationally with the Allman Brothers Band, Dickey Betts, Marty Balin (Jefferson Airplane) and has performed with Sonny Landreth, Robert Randolf, BB King, Robert Cray with the Blind Boys of Alabama & The Blues Brothers….. Most recently seen rocking out with Kenny Wayne Shepherd at The Space in Westbury NY & with Legendary ZZ Top Frontman Billy Gibbons in NY and D.C. on the 2018 Big Bad Blues Tour…
The Levins (pronounced LeVINNs) are a NY-based, nationally touring acoustic duo known for sunsplashed, peace-filled music that connects on a universal level with lighthearted depth. This selfproduced NEW RELEASE (4/26/19) “CARAVAN OF DAWN” goes deeper by taking an aerial view of life’s ability to break the chains of darkness and light, to explore the sorrow inside joy and joy inside sorrow. Guitar (Ira Levin) and piano (Julia Bordenaro Levin), along with unique harmonies & tightly blended unison vocals, reflect the married couple’s own compatible musical & personal relationship. They closed 2018 with an original full-scale San Francisco musical theater/EuroCircus production based on their 2013 release, “My Friend Hafiz” and they’re looking forward to where this new collection will lead them.
“Caravan Of Dawn is a powerful distillation of the duo’s artistic forays, bringing together its varied musical and sonic explorations into a signature aesthetic. Adding to the album’s potency is The Levins’ careful album sequencing, offering the listener a smoothly curated experience, brimming with elegant touches of cello, lush soundscapes, passages with trumpets, and tasteful electric guitar textures. Together, the songs on Caravan Of Dawn orbit around transformative messages of healing. Ira shares,“These days people seem so divided and polarized—many people seek safety in bubbles. We want to offer people hope and a place to connect.” Julia concludes, “We hope the album reaches people through its openness and honesty, and that it helps people to move forward and not feel so alone.”
PRAISE FOR THE LEVINS…
“The Levins music…a much needed remedy for a hurried and
harried world. They serve to remind us of the old adage that says music and poetry can indeed be a soothing balm for troubled times.”
– Lee Zimmerman, No Depression
“The Levins tap into musical inspiration that is both inspiring and inspired. They seek to create a musical harmony meant to raise listeners to a higher plane. Caravan of Dawn is a gorgeous work!”
– Joltin Joe Pszonek, Radio Nowhere
“The Levins have scored another “win” with the release of “Caravan of Dawn.” Their trademark harmonies have never sounded better and the collection of uplifting songs serve up the perfect tonic for whatever ails we might be facing. Uplifting, inspiring and loving – their latest CD is a stunning production that gives us a chance to pause and celebrate the joys of life. A most welcome recording!”
– Ron Olesko, WFDU
“The open hearted songs of The Levins feed my soul. What the
world needs now more than ever is the poetry, spirituality, and humanity of their upliftng musicality.”
– John Platt, WFUV, NYC
Now we know why it is called Good Friday, you all get a chance to get your copy of Take Me As I Am: The Muscle Shoals Sessions, we have had a digital copy for airplay a few weeks now and it is a cracker of a recording.
It’s a SHAME pure rocking blues will not be Song of the Month, doesn’t need that title to get lots of airplay. SHAME will not be played on a Spotlight Album of the Month, the album is already in the Spotlight.
WHAT ABOUT ME? sings Meg, “what about you?”asks our music director shrugging his shoulders. “calling me Baby will not get you made Artist of the Month“. Our music director is a hard man.
Don’t worry though because as you sing “TELL EVERYBODY” we will be telling everyone about Take Me As I Am: The Muscle Shoals Sessions every chance we get.
OK so we know what Meg and her album is not going to be? but what about a review? Now there is a problem, our highly paid reviewer has gone on holiday so the music director is writing one right now. While you wait watch the video below ok.
Well the Music Director is taking a lot of time with his review so our very own Program Director has copy/pasted the review provided by Meg’s PR company and written by Rick J Bowen.
Thanks to Betsie the Blind Raccoon for providing this time filler.
“Originally from the Finger Lakes of NY State, singer/songwriter/guitarist Meg Williams (now based in Nashville), has signed with Nola Blue Records for her debut full-length album, “Take Me As I Am: The Muscle Shoals Sessions.” Her 2017 EP, “Maybe Someday,” opened many doors for Williams, including the chance to compete in the 2019 International Blues Challenge (Memphis, TN), representing the Kentucky Blues Society, and become the house band director for the Women In Blues Showcase. Williams, who draws instant comparisons to Susan Tedeschi and Bonnie Raitt, was obviously inspired during her sessions at FAME Recording Studios to take full advantage of the aesthetic of the space that gave birth to 100’s of hit records and is home to the world-renowned Swampers rhythm section, and its formula for rocking soul and R&B.
The sessions, produced by Meg and engineered by John Gifford Ill, has Williams backed by an all-star rhythm section including Will McFarlane on guitar, Bob Wray on bass, Clayton Ivey on keys and Justin Holder on drums. Also appearing are Dan Wecht on guitar/slide guitar and Sara Rogers on background vocals. The album is a collection of 12 original songs, penned by Williams alone or in collaboration with Nashville-based songwriters Claire Kelly, Scott Barrier, Chase Walker, Terry Goose Downing, and Jenny Teator, that includes new versions of ‘l Feel A Heartache Coming’ and ‘Little Bit Of The Devil’ from the EP.
The bump and grind blues ‘Come On Over To Me’ kicks open the set with greasy slide guitar and alluring vocals from Williams. But don’t be confused, this isn’t a soft-sell record as Williams dons her Gibson for the country-fired riff rocker ‘Tell Everybody,’ shouting out the chorus before throwing down hot lead guitar on the heavy-duty funk burner ‘Shame.’ The tale of a wild woman, ‘Little Bit Of The Devil,’ is revved up and refined into a tighter narrative showcasing the tasty chops of the rhythm section. Fellow Nashville transplant Chase Walker co-wrote the tome of hard luck and trouble ’Played By The Blues,’ a fine update of a familiar theme. While singer-songwriter Claire Kelly helped her write the optimistic love song ‘Sometimes I Need You Too’ that ramps up to a great jamming Allman Brothers vibe.
The title track is Williams declaration that she is in this for the long haul, and will be true to herself, as she sings about life, love and the choice to compete in the ruthless world of the music business. Some fine Hammond B3 from Clayton Ivey sweetens the easy groove of ‘What About Me?’ and the dynamic rocker ‘Can’t Keep Waiting On You,’ has a slow-burning intensity, while the full-blown soul rock blaster ‘I Feel A Heartache Coming,’ lets loose all the fury of Williams and the crew. Williams plays the femme fatale for the slinky ‘Make A Move’ and the album closes with a classic swinging blues ballad ‘Take A Chance On My Love,’ surrounding Williams’ sultry alto with Gospel flavored harmonies and soaring guitar from Will McFarlane.
With each track tinged with that Muscle Shoals Sound, “Take Me As I Am” exquisitely sets the stage for Meg Williams to become a rising star in the blues rock world.”
Quotation marks added by our Blues DJ, Dick.
Program Director is one finger typing so while he finishes off the review let us all read Meg’s Bio.
Meg Williams performs frequently at venues across the country with her band, Meg Williams Band, as a solo/duo act, and as a guitarist for other artists. She recently competed in the 2019 International Blues Challenge (Memphis, TN), representing the Kentucky Blues Society, and was the house band director for the Women in Blues Showcase. Meg has additionally performed main-stage at the 2018 Venice Blues Festival (Venice, FL), RedGorilla Music Festival (Austin, TX), Blues Radio International during the BMA’s (Memphis, TN), Knoxville’s WDVX Blue Plate Special, Tennessee Motorcycles & Music Revival Festival, & Loretta Lynn’s Ranch as an artist, and performed at Cheyenne Frontier Days & CMA Fest as a guitarist for other artists. Meg’s newest blues-rock EP, ‘Maybe Someday,’ has been played on SiriusXM’s Bluesville and radio stations world-wide – ‘Maybe Someday’ reached #10 on the Top 50 Blues Rock Album charts and on the Roots Music Report, and #38 on the Top Blues Album charts. Often compared to Susan Tedeschi and Bonnie Raitt, Meg’s guitar playing has captured the attention of listeners throughout Nashville and increasingly the US. Meg just signed with Nola Blue Records and released her full length album, recorded at FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, AL, “Take Me As I Am: The Muscle Shoals Sessions” on April 19, 2019.
Well not much to gossip about in that biography was there.
Maybe some gossip here, thank you Indie Music Women. (click on the photo and you can read it, if you leave here don’t forget to come back for the review)
You back? Ok a few photos to look at and the review will be ready.
Ok not very big but Blind Raccoons don’t care.
So the review of Meg Williams album Take Me As I Am: The Muscle Shoals Sessions from Nola Blue Records is ready, are you?
Oh, there is a word you don’t see much in reviews never mind being a review! At least he tried.
Finally some links to Meg and that is it for another review post. See you all soon.
Hope no bias toward Blind Raccoon was noticed, if you did then that is your problem, they are only doing their job of promoting one of their artists.
No payment is received for using that image, just a way of saying thank you to Nola Blue for allowing the world to hear “Take Me As I Am: The Muscle Shoals Sessions”.
“Wooh Dang…an onomatopoeia for the audible reaction I had upon hearing his rambling, atmospheric folk music for the first time.” – Paste
There is a power present in the places where we’re invited to adopt the pace of nature. The same forces that patiently connect the cells of a sprig in the soil can uproot a redwood with a single winter storm. If you’ve listened to Daniel Norgren, you understand. The experience of Norgren’s music is marked by connection: the artist to the band, the audience to the music, and the body to the soul. Norgren’s latest album, Wooh Dang, out April 19, 2019 on Superpuma Records, will be his first worldwide release.
“I hadn’t nudged my way to the front of a crowd like that in over 10 years. Daniel Norgren’s voice simply beckoned my soul forward and that’s where I found myself, mesmerized in the front row. His voice beckons me there still.” – Phil Cook
“Like a long slow motion drive through a country that is both alien and familiar, ancient and brand new at once.” – Eric D. Johnson (Fruit Bats) at Talkhouse
Produced by Norgren and engineered by longtime collaborator and Superpuma Records originator Pelle Nyhage, Wooh Dang was made during the Fall of 2018 in a single room of a 19th-century textile farmhouse in the woods near Norgren’s home in Southwest Sweden. “The interior looked it hadn’t been touched for the past 80 years,” says Norgren. “I moved a lamp and it left a dark red ring on the pink tablecloth underneath…goldmine! The house was huge, full of good, inspiring mustiness, creaking wooden floors, scary old portrait paintings on the walls, and an old, black German piano which I used in all the songs.” Recorded live and entirely on a 16 track analogue rig, without guitar tuners, the album captures the close chemistry between Norgren and his band, comprised of old friends Anders Grahn (bass), Erik Berntsson (drums), and Andreas Filipsson (guitar and banjo).
“Welcoming…with a careful touch of ambiance and mystery in the playing…There’s a beauty buried deep inside in these lazy and woodsy songs just waiting for you to dig them out.” – NPR First Listen
An intertwining of analog instrumentation, live performance, and rural field recordings, Wooh Dang is rife with a deeply hopeful creative intention. It’s red blooded, alive, and coursing with equal parts adrenaline and seratonin. “Wooh Dang was a real fun album to make and to me it’s been the world for the last few years,” says Daniel Norgren. “Thanks for taking the time. I hope you enjoy it.”
North American Tour 2019 (announcing April 30)
September 18: Chicago, IL – Lincoln Hall
September 19: Louisville, KY – Zanzabar
September 20: Asheville, NC – The Grey Eagle
September 21: Bristol, TN – Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion
September 22: Nashville, TN – 3rd & Lindsley
September 25: Washington, DC – Black Cat
September 26: Philadelphia, PA
September 27: Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg
September 28: Boston, MA – Brighton Music Hall
September 30: Toronto, ONT – Great Hall
October 2: St. Paul, MN – Turf Club
October 3: Boulder, CO – Fox Theater
October 4: Seattle, WA – Neptune Theater
October 5: Portland, OR – Revolution Hall
October 6: San Francisco, CA – Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival
October 8: Los Angeles, CA – Teragram Ballroom Dates not live yet – will be announced April 30
“Warm and intimate, yet elegantly constructed, psych-folk.” – Bandcamp
Many thanks Katie (better known as AKA here at TME.fm) for your love in moderation.
Where do I start?!
Pictures tell a good story. Let’s start there.
I Just broke some new ground……
This week, my album was back on the Roots Music Report Charts. This is the chart that all the radio stations report to after graciously spinning my indie made album alongside a bunch of famous people like Ryan Bingham, Michael Franti, Coco Montoya, etc. In looking deeper, I noticed something quite exciting. I am the only unsigned female on this chart of Top 50 RMR CA albums spun this week. Oh look! There’s my pal Jackie Greene!
Blues Matters Magazine out of The UK gave me some love for the second issue in a row, this time in the form of a CD Review. These kindnesses are making my heart explode into a gooey mushy pool of love goop.
Well our permanent reviewer has been working hard again, was a bad day when he found out about “copy/paste”.
Or maybe a good day when you read some of his reviews.
Good job there are plenty of music blogs that write great reviews.
So here is a video that I inserted for your enjoyment.
Now you have watched that you can read what was “copy/pasted” from the wonderful PR Company
“We cover a lot of acoustic singer-songwriters around here, so when we do feature one it has to be good. Rogers is talented. The way he cranks up the intensity of the vocal on the “really oughta know better by now” on the chorus reveals something deep and satisfying. It’s disturbingly personal….it’ll rip your damn soul out.” EAR TO THE GROUND MUSIC
Benjamin Dakota Rogers made his highly anticipated return to the folk world with his brand new single, digitally released January 25. Better by Now, strips the genre down to its core and emotionally charges it with raw human experience, immediately earning a top 40 single spot on the Airplay Direct Folk chart. With the release of his new single, this award-winning singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist folk-phenom proves he’s at the top of his game in every way imaginable.
Better By Now, the lead track, “a beautifully sad folk pop ballad” (Folk Roots Radio with Jan Hall) sets the tone, proving the depth and maturity of Benjamin coming of age, as he delves into the state we find ourselves while in a relationship and come to realize we “really ought to know better by now.” Cut two is an upbeat song featuring brilliant unbound violin bidding Fare Thee Well, as we realize we love someone but we need to move on. The third track leans into the love of dark starry midnights, reminiscing about Pretty Girls, and featuring haunting harmony with Meg Conti, the song paints a vivid landscape traveling town to town away from those we are far from.
’Til I Die leaves the listener feeling an ache of loss and a yearning to continue the search in the ocean “though she’s six feet in the ground” in these poetically gorgeous, yet grief-stricken lyrics and sorrow filled melody. Benjamin gives us a glimpse of his growing career as a musician in $7, the money needed, ironically, to continue carving his musical path singing “just need seven more dollars to ride that train.” Followed up by an interlude midway in the cd as Benjamin begs the Lazy Old Moon “bring me home safe to her” after fighting another man’s war.
Life is supposed to hurt, to make you feel, and Benjamin does just that in the gripping tale of Home “because if it doesn’t hurt when everything’s said and done and over with what was the fucking point.” Leading next to a reflective time laying in a field realizing friends and family will be missed as Benjamin’s career begins to take off, with instrumentation and vocals that soar in Rockabye. Bluesy, gritty folk storytelling lends further depth to the album in the next track about a fugitive being hunted by a Mercy (less) bounty hunter, inspired by a 1911 Rangers badge in Benjamin’s antique collection.
She Was A Singer is a song about a father telling his child about his Mother “in one of those old timey rock and roll bands” but she is gone. The final track, begins as a lilting, brutally honest love song launching into an energetic almost frenetic near end chorus with well-appointed harmonies and intense instrumentation buildup about living with mental illness and addiction: Saints And Sinners “you won’t find it in that bottle full of answers, that I found on the drug store shelf.”
“A multi-instrumentalist, singer songwriter and composer, Benjamin Dakota Rogers pushes the boundaries of traditional folk. Combining fiddle, guitar and mandolin with his unique voice and strong lyrics he is creating music that demands attention.” Jan Hall – Folk Roots Radio with Jan HallPrevious interview
ABOUT BENJAMIN DAKOTA ROGERS
Benjamin Dakota Rogers found a passion and purpose in folk music after inheriting his Great-Grandfather’s violin at the tender age of seven. From budding musician to awe-inspiring performer, his love of creating meaningful music has taken the reins and garnered much attention from folk artists and enthusiasts alike. “Rogers’ unique voice, thought-provoking lyrics, energetic performances and dynamic fiddle techniques leave this up-and-coming musician in a class of his own.” – InSpades Magazine
With the release of his most ambitious project to date, Benjamin continues to redefine the genre with an infinite sound evolution that promises to deepen the path he’s already carved for himself for years to come. This is an album that can only be delivered from the honesty and grit of a farm boy’s hands. Hailing from the countryside of rural Ontario, Benjamin funnels his penchant for starry nights and nostalgia into his stylized folk sound, reaching far beyond to include influences of roots, blues and country music.
Read more HEREand find Benjamin’s Canadian tour info HERE
Yes Spotlighting one of our favorite troubadours new album gives us great pleasure and I hope all of you listeners too.
Well one has to say that the poster was a poor effort but the album is far from that.
A big thank you to Adam Dawson for supplying the album for promotion.
Yes thats the Adam who tries to play music on a …
Adam Carroll’s musical biography is as winding as the stories in his songs, full of far-away places and close-to-home meditations that encompass a career built on countless shows in Texas clubs, thousands of miles on the road with his partner in life and music, Chris Carroll, accolades of all kinds, and still the burning desire to simply…write the next song.
Thank goodness for that, because Carroll’s songs tap into a vein of the human condition that make them deeply moving but often humorous. As No Depression notes, “Carroll slips easily between observed detail and poetic flight, framing everyday images as literary moments. He’s particularly adept at portraiture, whether it’s a colorful hustler, a rural taxi driver or a karaoke singer, he sees what you might feel, but couldn’t verbalize, capturing a person’s essence in the details of their physical being and actions.”
“The core of what I do is songwriting; it’s the one thing I’m passionate about. It’s the most fulfilling and challenging job I can imagine.” explains Adam. In fact, the scope of Carroll’s songwriting influence was recognized in 2016 when “Highway Prayer: A Tribute to Adam Carroll” was released, featuring esteemed writers/performers like Hayes Carll, James McMurtry, Slaid Cleaves, and Terri Hendrix covering Carroll-penned tunes. It has garnered attention from publications like Texas Monthly and Rolling Stone, the latter which noted that Carroll “is talented beyond his years.”
With tours crisscrossing the USA, Canada and Europe, Carroll is currently focusing on performances as a duo with Chris Carroll, Canadian singer-songwriter and Texas transplant. Their distinct energies and personalities play off each other onstage, and the effect is a both moving and entertaining show that delights crowds from coast to coast.
Carroll’s body of work is expansive with eight independently produced albums to his name. From studio records produced by Grammy Award winner Lloyd Maines (South of Town, Lookin’ Out the Screen Door, Live at Cheatham Street, Far Away Blues) through to his latest releases (Old Town Rock N Roll, Hard Times with Michael O’Connor, Live at Flipnotics), Carroll’s song credits also include co-writes and covers by Slaid Cleaves (“Race Car Joe”, “Hard to Believe”), Hayes Carll (“Take Me Away”, featured in the film Country Strong) and Band of Heathens (“Medicine Man”, “Maple Tears”).
“Among singer-songwriters, Adam Carroll is probably Austin’s best-kept secret. His tunes are marvels of economy; …constantly inventive and decidedly offbeat…Live at Flipnotics offers a typically low-key yet inviting overview of his career. With (Producer) Scrappy Jud Newcomb on guitar, he sparkles.” Jim Caligiuri, Austin Chronicle
“Influences? Adam Carroll. I used to skip my own gigs to go watch him…by far my favorite, somebody whose writing style I emulated in some ways.” Hayes Carll, No Depression 2011
In April 2018, Kramer returned to the studio to record her third full-length album. Valley of the Bones is a triumphant collection of original songs that illustrate and explore the expression human of love in all its various forms.
Tracked mostly live (including the vocal performances,) at Sound Temple Studios in Asheville, N.C., Kramer teamed up with her frequent collaborators: Free Planet Radio musicians River Guerguerian, Chris Rosser and two-time Grammy Award winner Eliot Wadopian; as well as Billy Cardine. The album also includes performances by Nicky Sanders of The Steep Canyon Rangers on violin and Asheville Symphony Orchestra musician Franklin Keel on cello.
The collection of 10 original songs was engineered, mixed and produced by Adam Johnson of Sound Lab Studios and co-produced by Kramer and Chris Rosser. Kramer says of bringing the earliest, tentative versions of her songs to Johnson and Rosser for arrangement help and production ideas, “I have never trusted two people more with my art. In the past, I have seldom let people hear my songs until I felt that they were polished, but as my musical relationship with and respect for [Johnson] and [Rosser] have deepened, it felt important to me to to involve them from the beginning”.
“I know that the songs and the record as a whole are much stronger for it, and their gentle but firmly constructive approach has made me a better artist. I’ve been looking for such allies and mentors for a long time,” she adds.
While most of the aforementioned musicians accompanied Kramer on her acclaimed 2016 release Carnival of Hopes, listeners will hear a distinct difference in the band’s chemistry, cohesion and almost electric intuition with one another on Valley of the Bones.
“Simply put, it’s because we’ve been playing together a lot over the past three years since I’ve moved back home to Asheville,” she says. “We’ve gotten to know each other personally, had a little time on the road together, sold out some shows in theaters together and have built an incredible mutual respect. We had genuine fun in the studio. I think all of that translates and comes through on the record.”
photo credit : Rose Kaz
Valley of the Bones’ songs tackle a breadth of subject matter, ranging from marriage to miscarriage. Spirituality and self-acceptance are expressed with poetic grace, vulnerability and unapologetically honest grit. Kramer’s endearing, self-effacing humor is also on full display. This warm, easy storytelling is paired with rich, nuanced arrangements that aren’t afraid to be simple when called for, and are punctuated with the unmistakably bittersweet southern wail of Billy Cardine’s dobro.
Standout tracks include the gutsy and reflective “Hymn” (which was a “homework assignment” from Mary Gauthier, Kramer’s musical mentor) the undeniably smart and sassy “Waffle House Song”, and the profoundly poetic and transcendent title track “Valley of the Bones”. This song was dubbed a “masterpiece” by Lydia Hutchinson of Performing Songwriter Magazine. Also noteworthy are the quirky and hilarious country zinger “I’ll See Your Crazy and Raise You Mine” and the sweet, earnest “Singin’s Enough” which speaks candidly of the struggles of a touring musician.
All of the songs on Valley of the Bones show Kramer arriving confidently and comfortably at home inside as both a woman and a masterful songwriter after over twenty years of honing her craft.
‘”Waffle House Song” proves that while Kramer may be eighteen years into her journey, she is solidly serving up a sizzlin’ hot and delicious portion of nourishment for one’s soul…..kinda like that yellow signed place she sings about.” – Tara Joan, The Daily Country
“I have watched Jane Kramer work diligently, patiently and persistently on her songwriting over many years, refining her natural ability with words to the level of songwriting mastery. She has composed a new collection of songs that beautifully serve the bold, confident intensity of her voice, and I could not be more excited about it. Bravo!”
– Mary Gauthier
“Jane Kramer is a folk singer, I dig that”
– Malcolm Holcombe
“For a singer-songwriter, Kramer has presented the holy trinity of brilliant and affecting songwriting, divine vocals that crackle with emotion and high class backing and accompaniment. That the result is a beautifully produced album that is a joy to listen to perhaps shouldn’t be a surprise”
-Pete Churchill, Americana UK
“The North Carolinian’s third album, Valley Of The Bones, is packed with memorable acoustic-led tunes, an expressive and attractive voice with autobiographical stories that leave you staggered at the breadth of topics and profundity.” – Tony Ives, Americana Music Show
“Her strong pretty voice and penchant for vivid lyrics are the deepest talents on display here, though the crack band (featuring Nicky Sanders of Steep Canyon Rangers on fiddle) is surely deserving of praise” – Joseph Neff, The Vinyl District
“A lovely down home voice, a sharp pen and great taste in musical pals make this organic/back porch set a high water mark for Americana that’ll just drive friends of owners of this album crazy since said owners won’t stop playing it.”
-Chris Spector, Midwest Record
“Kramer is a natural and you’ll find that in her music, as the songs take you down quiet, gravel country roads, beautiful forests of peaceful mountain retreats, and the sometimes lonely nights of motels and truck stops on the road of life.” – Sheryl Craig, Nashville Music Guide
“these songs are kick-up your heels good. These are old timey string band tunes with a modern feel, songs that will appeal to traditionalists and Americana fans alike. Turn it up!” -Viola Krause, Making a Scene
“She appears to be more comfortable and confident in herself and her songs than ever.” – Billy Phoenix, Steemit
Recorded at Sound Temple Studios in Asheville, NC www.soundtemplestudios.com
Engineered and Mixed by Adam Johnson of Sound Lab Studios www.soundlabstudios.com
Produced by Adam Johnson
Co-Producers: Chris Rosser and Jane Kramer
Additional Engineering, String Arrangement for “Wedding Vows” and Mastering by Chris Rosser of Hollow Reed Arts in Asheville, NC.
All Songs (Words and Music) by Jane Kramer (ASCAP, Famous Brown Boots Music.)
The Band Is:
Jane Kramer – Lead Vocals on All Songs
Chris Rosser – Acoustic and Electric Guitars, Keyboards, Harmonium, Octave Mandolin, Harmony Vocals
Eliot Wadopian – Upright Bass
River Guerguerian – Drumset and Percussion
Billy Cardine – Dobro
Allison Hall – Harmony Vocals
Nicky Sanders (of The Steep Canyon Rangers) Fiddle
Franklin Keel – Cello