Yes it is the same Mary different hair colour but just as mean.
Cold is the newest and most intimate release to date from award-winning musician/writer, Mean Mary (Mary James). The moody, almost gothic, lyrics and dark melodies take the listener through the colder seasons of the year and of the heart. Produced by Mary James, the album features all original songs with some lyrics taken straight from her journal entries.
As usual on a Mean Mary project, Mary provides the bulk of vocals and instrumentation to the songs but her family is always there as the unsung heroes. Brother, Frank James, adds his unusual guitar style and harmonies to 4 of the tracks, and Mother (award-winning writer, Jean James) is the co-writer that blends her own brand of lyrics so seamlessly with her daughter’s.
Anyway I spend a lot of time reading reviews and looking for “new artists” and I read a couple of excellent ones and listened to “12 More Days Of Blue”
I thought I should reach out to Chad and get a copy of the album to play on TME.fm as it is going to be good. Lets see it climb the RMR charts and enjoy the music at the same time.
Chad told his PR man and I received a copy immediately, also Adam the man has more artists who are top notch and we will be mentioning those another day. Adam the man actually remembers dickthespic, small world.
“Worthy Cause is an album full of honest truths in styles that range from country to zydeco in blended forms, and this song is at the heart of it.” – Melissa Clarke
Chad Richard (pronounced REE-shard) is a native of the Sabine River bottom, where the river merges Louisiana with Texas’ soil as it winds along. Steeped in the mingling influences of the region, Richard’s songwriting and musical sensibilities fuse Cajun, Texas swing, country and blues styles into an effortlessly born offspring of each side of the river.
Richard writes songs from the heart. Like so many of us, he has loved, laughed, experienced fatherhood, suffered break-up, sorrow, and divorce, and loved again. The experiences of trying to do all the right things as single Dad shaped his songwriting in unique ways, as much as the musical influences surrounding him did. Holding it all together by day, working in a chemical plant, he’d still play solo gigs at night. When Walt Wilkins happened upon Richard at one of these gigs in 2012, Wilkins invited Richard to sit in Wilkins’ band, at about the same time Todd Purifoy (producer and photographer for the Texas Music Scene) approached him about making a record. Forces aligned, connections solidified and before long Walt was producing Richard’s successful debut album: Veteran’s Grocery (2015).
His second release, Worthy Cause (2019), was recorded at Jumping Dog Studio in Austin, Texas. Again Richard turned to Walt Wilkins (Sam Baker, Jason Eady, Susan Gibson) for production and the album was engineered by Ron Flynt. In addition to Richard’s songwriting, acoustic guitar and vocals, other musicians contributing to the album include Wilkins and Flynt, Marian Brackney on fiddle, Chip Dolan (The Band of Heathens, Greg Trooper) on pianos and organs, Geoff Queen (Kelly Willis, Jason Boland & the Stragglers) on steel guitar, and Corby Schaub (Ryan Bingham) on lap steel. The rhythm section is Ray Rodriguez on drums and Bill Small on bass.
Worthy Cause is an album with songs characterized by stories as only Richard can tell them. “Slow Rollin’ Stateline” spins a tale of growing up on the Texas/LA border with “Zydeco to the east, Texas swing to the west,” as the song bears the musical marks of those influences. “German Angel” recounts a story of a couple living in a historic German house in the Texas Hill country, where the wife believes a ghost resides to watch over the manor, as told from the ghost’s perspective. “Worthy Cause” highlights Richard’s riveting vocals over hushed acoustic guitar and pedal steel, with an imperfect man’s tribute of gratitude towards the good, faithful woman who loves him. “Waters Rise” was inspired by Richard’s first hand experience of the kindness and humanity that shone through the floodwaters in the wake of hurricane Harvey – “waters rise, but people rise above.” “12 More Days of Blue” narrates the poignant tribulations of a loving, single Dad as he masks adult pain in order to experience the best with his child. The entire record showcases Richard’s striking ability to commandeer attention with his powerful vocal presence and compelling direct narrative style.
“I got my first real paying job when I was 11 years old. The man I went to work for gave me some advice. He said “Don’t ever turn something you love into your job! When you do you’ll soon lose the love for it!” I always remembered that and always kept music as a part time escape from my less than favorite job for fear of losing the love for it. Now with 30 years in a chemical plant and only 2 years left till I retire from this less than favorite job, I’m beginning to wonder if just maybe, there’s a possibility, that perhaps, he may have been full of shit!” – Chad Richard
“Chad doesn’t ever have to insist on himself – His completely unique Louisiana-Texas-Soul-Country voice grabs the listener, and in just a few minutes, everyone who hears him likes him,” – Walt Wilkins, Texas Songwriting Legend, Producer
Chad Richard – Worthy Cause (2019)
1. Slow Rollin State Line 4:03
2. Love Anyway 2:54
3. German Angel 3:41
4. Right Now 3:26
5. Worthy Cause 5:43
6. Fredericksburg 3:08
7. Waters Rise 3:28
8. The Big and The Little Hand 4:25
9. My Name 3:04
10. 12 More Days of Blue 3:49
11. Shawdy and a Shiner 3:01
12. The game 3:50
All Songs FCC Clean
Focus Tracks: 2, 3, 7, 10
All songs Written By Chad Richard, Barn Noise Publishing (BMI)
RECORDING & PRODUCTION CREDITS:
Produced by Walt Wilkins & Ron Flynt
Recorded at Jumping Dog Studio, Austin, Tx.
Mastered by Jerry Tubb at Terra Nova Mastering, Austin, Tx
Chad Richard-Vocals & Acoustic Guitar
Walt Wilkins- Acoustic & Electric Guitars & Percussion
Ray Rodriguez- Drums & Percussion
Bill small- Bass
Corby Schaub-Lap Steel Guitar
Chip Dolan- Piano, Wurlitzer Piano, & B3 organ
Marian Brackney- Fiddle/Violin & Viola
Geoff Queen- Steel Guitar & Dobro
Ron Flynt- Bass, “Waters Rise” & “Shawdy and a Shiner”
Piano, “Waters Rise” & “Worthy Cause”
Wurlitzer Piano, “My Name”
B3 organ, “12 More Days of Blue” & “Waters Rise”
Matt Giles- Electric Guitar, “Slow Rollin State Line”
Kurt Baumer- Fiddle, “Fredericksburg”
Harmonies- Walt Wilkins & Tina Mitchell Wilkins
Artwork- Julie Sckittone
Photography- Cory Hoover Photography
SPLIT EP WITH STEPHEN KARL & HANDSOME ANIMALS OUT FRIDAY
Darlin Darlin by Jason Sanchez
“‘Easy’ possesses a tremulous devastation, delivering a wracking emotional impact that blindsides you with both it fragility and fierceness. The drums shuffle along as the guitars glimmer in the cool light of the evening, and Guerrero’s voice shines like the moon as it guides her listeners through the encroaching darkness. There’s a chill in the air, and “Easy” effortlessly captures that hesitant anxiety.” – The Southern Sounding
New York has long been a hotbed for songwriters, from the Folk City-centered explosion of the ‘40s, ‘50s, and ‘60s, to the anti-folk uprising of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, to the vibrant current scene that supports the ten-year-old Brooklyn Folk Fest and a healthy open mic milieu that finds true believers like Stephen Karl and Joanie Leon Guerrero pouring their hearts and guts out every night of the week.
Once upon a time, three-chord buskers and punk-fueled sensitive singer/songwriters ruled New York’s song-oriented clubs. These days, a new melding of singer/songwriters and highly skilled post-conservatory musicians are harvesting elegant, noisy, impassioned, and timeless tunes, as exemplified by this split single by genre-pushing comrades-in-song Stephen Karl & Handsome Animals and Darlin Darlin.
“There’s definitely a scene in New York of people who are in their late 20s to early 40s who went through serious academic music training, from Julliard and Yale, and now they’re [returning to basics] as songwriters,” said Karl, whose resume includes a master’s degree in classical guitar performance, guitarist for Antony and The Johnsons, and the driving force behind the experimental instrumental ensemble Redhooker. “I missed words. I missed writing words, and a lot of these people found a similar trajectory as me, where I’m not honoring my musical heritage if I’m just practicing Bach all the time. My community is more people like that, which is outstanding because it means a lot of the players are high level and we can put a band together where everyone’s got the chops and the ears.”
“I think we’re all just trying to create a community,” said Guerrero, singer and co-guiding light (with romantic partner and multi-instrumentalist Brett Parnell) behind Darlin Darlin. “I grew up in Virginia, and I really got into music after I graduated from high school and moved to [Washington] D.C. right after. There’s such a strong community of musicians there. Everybody goes to everybody else’s shows, and people are really supportive there. I feel like New York is all about curating a vibe. D.C. is more like, ‘Here, you guys have a good thing going on, do it here.’”
Towards making a scene, the two Brooklyn-based bands have played gigs together and collaborated musically and communally. The marriage is made official with a four-song split single EP released today. Karl’s tunes, “Shelter” and “Cyndi,” are pretty slices of life that evoke his Dylan-Minnesota roots and highlighted by trippy Bowie-worthy pop vocals, while Darlin Darlin’s haunting “Easy” and “Katy, TX” suggest fellow New Yorkers Ollabelle and the Golden Palominos. Both bands bring a raw freshness to a time-honored tradition.
“Joanie likes to describe Darlin Darlin as ‘Dolly Parton meets Nick Cave,’” said Karl, of his friends’ dark lilt. “My heroes are Prince, Springsteen, Tom Waits, Townes Van Zandt. A lot of these tunes that were written around this time deal with romantic relationship struggles: ‘Shelter’ is an honest story of a relationship that is failing, but it does it in an honest, compassionate, and not-too maudlin way by acknowledging what I’m experiencing, and what I love about the woman I’m losing, and how I basically do want the best for her. I felt like it was important to show that side, but I also wanted to present a fun story, and ‘Cyndi’ is that—about a night when I was 25 and got a kiss from Cyndi Lauper.”
For both Darlin Darlin and Stephen Karl & Handsome Animals, “what comes out” is beautiful. And from the sounds of things, this four-song EP is just the beginning.
Release Date: May 4, 2018
Stephen Karl & Handsome Animals
On My Spirit Sister Joshua James digs into his own messy humanity to create a complex and chillingly candid album
Joshua James’ new album looks into the darkness that we all flirt with, the things we think and dissect through our internal monologues but rarely share with others. Questioning core beliefs, faith in the micro and the macro, being uncertain. These are tenets of James’ songwriting, and his life, and on his upcoming dark Americana album My Spirit Sister he looks to continue facing the unknown with a rabid curiosity.
The first single, ‘Millie’, written about grappling with himself while on the verge of having a child with his wife, premiered on Noisey last week, you can click through the image below to check out that track and his upcoming tour dates. You can also download and stream the full album after the blurb below that!
More Info On Joshua James’ My Spirit Sister
“Humanity,” said Dostoevsky, “is a mystery. It must be unravelled.” On his latest album, My Spirit Sister, Utah-based Americana artist Joshua James attempts to do just that, laying bare a narrative catalogue of his unraveling of the complexities and imperfections inherent in us all.
Joshua James was born and raised in Lincoln, Nebraska, where he found solace early on in old records. James moved to Utah for university, where he began writing songs while studying nursing. “Leaving your home, your family, and living somewhere without the support of that structure is going to cause you to change,” he says. “I suppose it caused me to expand my view of the world, people, culture, god, the pursuit of a “career,” money and its affect on a man.” These themes and the hard-edged, stark landscapes of these states seep into the compositions on My Spirit Sister, which are stunningly beautiful yet somehow perilous and harrowing in execution. James draws on inspiration from the untidy and unseemly parts of ourselves that we tend to hide even from the people closest to us. He may find more questions than he answers, but his ethos of working to be honest about his own weaknesses led to a chillingly engaging record.
4/2 – Maintenance Shop – Ames, IA
4/3 – City Winery – Chicago, IL
4/4 – The Ark – Ann Arbor, MI
4/6 – The Haunt – Ithaca, NY
4/7 – Word Barn – Portsmouth, NH
4/8 – Lizard Lounge – Boston, MA
4/9 – Parlor Room – Northampton, MA
4/11 – Higher Ground – Burlington, VT
4/12 – Mercury Lounge – New York, NY
4/14 – World Cafe Live (upstairs) – Philadelphia, PA
4/15 – Jammin’ Java – Vienna, VA
4/20 – Altamont Theater – Asheville, NC
4/21 – Neighborhood Theatre – Charlotte, NC
4/22 – Roasting Room – Bluffton, SC
4/23 – High Dive – Gainesville, FL
4/24 – Jaeb Theater @ Straz Center – Tampa, FL
4/26 – Eddie’s Attic – Atlanta, GA
Katie Knipp is equipped with powerful vocals and plays a variety of instruments from boogie woogie piano to slide guitar, to honest harmonica laden stories in between. She has opened for Robert Cray, Joan Osborne, Jimmie Vaughan, Jon Cleary, The Doobie Brothers, Tim Reynolds, The James Hunter Six, and more. #10 on Blues Albums Billboard and 2019 SAMMIE award winner for best blues artist.
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Mary Gauthier - Rifles & Rosary Beads
Sep 08, 2019
Co-written with U.S. veterans and their families, the eleven deeply personal songs on this album reveal the untold stories, and powerful struggles that these veterans and their spouses deal with abroad and after returning home.
_"You’ll be hard-pressed to hear a more powerfully moving work than Rifles & Rosary Beads this year — or any other.”
Last year we saw the release of Jim Allchin’s Decisions album which garnered good critical review for it’s great songs and musicianship. Allchin returned to the studio this past Spring to once again collaborate with Tom Hambridge and his team. Hambridge has produced Grammy winners before and to make things even sweeter he and Allchin invited Mike Zito, Bobby Rush and The Memphis Horns to join them on this production.
The output of all that is 14 new songs, 3 penned by Allchin alone and the other 11 were collaborations between Allchin, Hambridge and a couple of other folks here and there. In addition to Allchin on vocals and guitar are Bob Britt, Kenny Greenberg and Rob McNelley on rhythm guitar, Hambridge on drums, Kevin McKendree on keys, Glenn Worf on bass, Mycle Wastman on backing vocals and the aforementioned guest musicians.
Peter Rowan has paid his dues, spending more than 50 years in and around bluegrass, sharing the stage with everyone from Bill Monroe and Jerry Garcia. Now, he’s paying tribute.
His new CD on Rebel Records is called Carter Stanley’s Eyes. But the title cut isn’t the only nod to the man many consider the best lead singer in bluegrass. Cut after cut, including two written by Carter, two written by his brother Ralph, and one by Monroe, the songs conjure up memories of the artist who left us far too soon, in 1966.
But the title cut, one of three songs on the CD written by Rowan, seals the deal. The Light in Carter Stanley’s Eyes recounts the day in 1965 when Monroe and Rowan — a member of the Blue Grass Boys who wasn’t yet old enough to vote — visited Carter near the end of his tragically shortened life.
The song includes a spoken part, in which Rowan recalls Monroe telling Stanley that he had been one of his favorite Blue Grass Boys, and his favorite lead singer. It also recounts Stanley asking Rowan if he was “going to stick with it,” which Rowan answered affirmatively. Given that more than half a century has passed between the question and this new project, Rowan clearly kept his end of the bargain.
The song, with it’s built-in oral history of an important moment in bluegrass history, will help make Carter Stanley relevant to new generations of pickers. And it should add momentum to the push to add Carter and Ralph to the Country Music Hall of Fame, an oversight that frankly should have been corrected long ago.
Buddy Guy stands as one of the last true traditional blues legends of his time; an era that predated the rock ‘n’ roll explosion of the mid-1960s. Few remain, and even fewer are still releasing albums that remind us as to why they have enjoyed such a lengthy and illustrious career. The Blues Is Alive And Well is very much one of those albums. As a follow-up to his 2015 release, Born To Play Guitar, and his eighteenth solo studio album, The Blues Is Alive And Well features collaborations with Jeff Beck, Keith Richards, and Mick Jagger, and is certainly one of the best blues records to be released this year.
Becky’s body of work is already vast and impressive, as a songwriter and as artist, and she has the awards and accolades to back it up. But, as Crepe Paper Heart demonstrates, she’s not about to rest on her laurels.
From the opening notes of Another Love Gone Wrong to the closing of Phoenix Arise, the 12 songs will take you on an emotional roller coaster of thrills, tears, longing and loss. The stories are compelling, as her songs tend to be. And the performances are top drawer. Again, that’s no surprise if you’ve followed her on stage and on record. With the collective strength of her band and an all-star lineup of guests, anything less would be shocking.
Heartbreak is never any fun, but it sure seems to be good fuel for the creative process. Nicki Bluhm first found an audience for her rich, smoky voice while making music with her husband Tim Bluhm, who produced her early albums and co-founded their band, the Gramblers. But in November 2015, the Bluhms revealed they were getting a divorce, and their creative partnership ended along with their marriage. Splitting up was clearly not a pleasant experience for Nicki, and she lays out all her hurt and disappointment on her 2018 album, To Rise You Gotta Fall. This is a breakup album if there ever were such a thing, but Bluhm doesn't sound like the experience has weakened her. There are bittersweet moments in "Staring at the Sun" and "Last to Know" where Bluhm reveals her emotional wounds, but more often she sounds clear-eyed in her postmortem of her relationship ("Something Really Mean") or defiant as she moves past the wreckage ("Can't Fool the Fool" and "Things I've Done"). Musically, To Rise You Gotta Fall is steeped in vintage R&B and soul with a dash of country for seasoning, and the bluesy angles of the music are a perfect match for Bluhm's ruminations on a love that used to be. The album was cut in Memphis at the legendary Sam Phillips Recording Studio, and producer Matt Ross-Spang has put together a band that can evoke the sounds of R&B past without sounding dated or falsely nostalgic. And To Rise You Gotta Fall features some of Bluhm's finest vocal work, filled with passion and nuance at the same time, and for all the powerful emotions in play here, she doesn't overplay, and the focus and restraint only make this music more intense. Hopefully Nicki Bluhm won't have to get dumped again for her to make an album this good, but at least she found a way to put her broken heart to good use, and To Rise You Gotta Fall ranks with her best music to date.
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Kinky Friedman - Circus of Life
Sep 08, 2019
Before he was a novelist, and before he ran for governor of the state of Texas, Kinky Friedman was known as a musician. Proof of that can be found in his first new album in close to four decades, Circus of Life, being released on his own Echo Hill label.
As the lead singer of Kinky Friedman and the Texas Jewboys he was responsible for such country classics as “Asshole from El Paso” and “They Don’t Make Jews Like Jesus Anymore”. The band also hold the distinction of being one of the few who were filmed for the famed TV show Austin City Limits but whose segment was never aired. (It is available on DVD if you look hard enough).
While Kinky has mellowed somewhat since those halcyon days, only “Little Jewford” Shelby (piano) still rides with him, and his songs aren’t as in your face as they used to be, none of that impacts on the quality of the material you’ll find on this album. For while the twelve songs on the disc only add up to just over 35 minutes of music, their substance can’t be measured by how much time they take up.
A new album from John Prine is always reason to celebrate, but an album in which he wrote or co-wrote all the songs is an even bigger reason to rejoice. The Tree of Forgiveness is the first album since 2005’s Fair & Square where Prine has written the songs. He has issued albums since then, but like Bob Dylan, they have been albums of cover versions, but this album is Prine and, I would argue, Prine at his best.
Prine co-writes with old friends and longtime collaborators on this album. He even wrote a song with Phil Spector — he started writing the song, “God Only Knows”, decades ago. Pat McLaughlin, Roger Cook, and Keith Sykes have worked with Prine in the past. He has made some new friends too in Dan Auerbach, who co-wrote the brilliant “Caravan of Fools”, and Brandi Carlile, who duets with Prine on the beautiful “I Have Met My Love Today”.
When Nashville-based singer/songwriter/producer Tom Hambridge decided to pay tribute to the city of New Orleans with this CD, he had no trouble recruiting several of the biggest names in Big Easy music – including Ivan Neville, Sonny Landreth and the late Allen Toussaint — to help him. But that should come as no surprise to anyone who’s aware of the rich legacy he’s already created in the worlds of blues, country and rock.
A native of Buffalo, N.Y., who graduated from Berklee College Of Music and spent three years on the road as the percussionist for guitar legend Roy Buchanan, Hambridge has earned Grammys as a producer of Buddy Guy’s Living Proof and Born To Play Guitar albums as well as more nominations for his collaboration with a who’s who of entertainers, including Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Van Morrison, Johnny Winter, Gregg Allman, Kid Rock, George Thorogood, Susan Tedeschi and many others.
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Mark Knopfler - Down the Road Wherever
Sep 08, 2019
Mark Knopfler’s ninth solo studio album ‘Down The Road Wherever’ features unhurriedly elegant new songs inspired by a wide range of subjects, including his early days in Deptford with Dire Straits, a stray football fan lost in a strange town, and the compulsion of a musician hitching home through the snow. Mark has a poet’s eye for telling details that infuse his songs with his unique psychogeography – ‘where the Delta meets the Tyne’ as he describes it – and his warm Geordie vocal tone and his deft, richly melodic guitar playing are as breathtaking and thrilling as ever.
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JP Harris - Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing
Sep 08, 2019
JP Harris doesn’t fancy himself a musician as much as a carpenter who writes country songs. With his forthcoming album, Sometimes Dogs Bark at Nothing (out October 5 on Free Dirt Records), Harris is back after a four-year hiatus to remind us what it's like to actually live the stories we hear so often in country music. Born in Montgomery, Alabama, Harris left home at 14 and traveled the country hopping freight trains, working the odd job, and living without electricity or running water for over a decade. For this record, his third full-length, he tapped a handful of his favorite players and called on the production prowess of Morgan Jahnig (Old Crow Medicine Show) to capture the stories of his stranger-than-fiction life. Dripping with pedal steel and telecaster twang, the record has the rugged edges of outlaw, the danceability of honky tonk, and classic country's beloved emotional candor. After more than a decade in the trenches, Harris is more in love with country music than ever. If he hasn't already, his latest effort will make you a believer.
Steve Forbert’s new album ‘Magic Tree,’ recorded in Meridian (his birthplace in Mississippi), Nashville, New York, New Jersey and Virginia, is a collection of his own songs and the music loses nothing in its quality of production despite the country wide recording venues. Throughout the album his folk roots shine clear, as does his song writing ability honed over his forty years in the music industry.
It might be naive to think you can detect authentic music without being familiar with the particular genre. Paul Thorn’s Don’t Let the Devil Ride, is an incredible gospel and gospel-influenced album that sounds like the real deal: From its production, which sounds like it was recorded inside an old hot wooden church stuffed full of sinning parishioners, to the songs, which make the listener feel like they’ve stumbled into perhaps the South’s most exciting church service. It’s all the more amazing given that Thorn isn’t a gospel artist.
The album kills because it’s intense without being noodle-y. Every song sounds like great musicians trying–somewhat unsuccessfully–to hide just how talented they are. As is often the case with gospel, much of this comes from the organ, which propels many of the songs here. The album kicks off with “Come On Let’s Go,” which is propelled by that organ, as mentioned earlier. An infectious hand-clap keeps the beat, with horns popping in and out of gospel-tinged background vocals. The song builds to a manic climax before collapsing into a swirl of organ. Truthfully, if Thorn had ended the album on that first song, everyone would have felt like they got their money’s worth.
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Sugarcane Jane - Southern State of Mind
Sep 08, 2019
Sugarcane Jane, the Alabama Gulf Coast-based husband and wife duo of Anthony Crawford and Savana Lee have recorded Southern State Of Mind with producer Buzz Cason. The recording starts off with a rousing "Cabin On The Hill", already a favorite with Sugarcane Jane fans. It is followed by "Campfire", the first single. The thought-provoking, fresh and exciting "Man Of Fewest Words" precedes the title track, "Southern State Of Mind", the tale of the joys of Southern living. "Destiny", a raw rocker, is foreshadowed by the inspirational "Rainbow". "Red Flags Warning", a true gem from the pen of Anthony Crawford is cut #7. Savana Lee is featured beautifully on "The One Before Me". "How Do You Know" and "We Can Dream" wrap up this eclectic collection of songs from the duo.
Brooklyn based but with a somewhat nomadic background, Ana Egge is one of those songwriters who seem to hover around the edge of the mainstream. She gets great reviews but she’s certainly not a household name even in the most dedicated of Americana infested households. Her album with The Stray Birds, ‘Bright Shadow’, did cause a bit of a buzz, perhaps down to that trio’s reputation but we can safely say here that ‘White Tiger’ is a much more multi faceted affair than the folky infused ‘Bright Shadow’, bursting as it is with imaginative arrangements adorned with horns and synths.
Tas Cru’s bio begins like this, “Raucous, rowdy, gentle, sweet, eccentric, quirky, and outright irreverent are all words that fittingly describe Tas Cru’s songs and testify to his reputation as a one of the most unique of bluesmen plying his trade today. ”
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Dave Alvin & Jimmie Dale Gilmore - Downey To Lubbock
Sep 08, 2019
DOWNEY TO LUBBOCK was born by immaculate inspiration from live shows Grammy winner Dave Alvin and Grammy nominee Jimmie Dale Gilmore performed together in 2017. Just the two of them were swapping songs and cutting up, each with a guitar and a heart full of soul, musicians who’ve been on the road their entire adult lives. The result is an album of blues, rock and folk inspired tunes that both of their fans will enjoy.
The album contains 12 songs - 10 covers and two originals - and is destined to be a classic Americana album from two Americana legends.
Joyann Parker brings a full range of talent to her performances as an accomplished singer, pianist, songwriter must-hear lead guitarist, currently endorsed by Heritage Guitars in Kalamazoo, MI. She has performed for thousands at major venues and festivals across the country.
For one so young (he was born in 1988), Travis Bowlin has already achieved a hell of a lot. Not only can he play the guitar, he can make them too! At first he made cigar box guitars for his own use but people seeing him use them, created a demand that he now meets through his separate business, Bowlin Box Instruments. Travis was born near Cincinnati and raised in a household full of many genres of music…so he soaked up blues, rock ‘n’ roll, gospel and country. He got his first guitar aged 15 and very soon started to perform around his home and surrounding states. To take his devotion a step further, he moved to Nashville and released his first album in 2014, called See You Again. His influences have a wide range as he cites Led Zeppelin, BB King, Robert Johnson, Prince, Steppenwolf, 3 Dog Night and Albert King amongst others.
He has now released his follow up album called, rather neatly, Secundus, as it means second but can also, apparently, be used to mean ‘lucky’. It contains 12 all original tracks and shows a development from that first outing with its more developed, blues-oriented feeling and manages to cover virtually every emotion a human being can experience. There are many more flavours to be discerned and I can hear jazz and soul in the mix and I even picked up a hint of progginess in a Yes kind of way.
In the past several years, Sideline has jumped from being a literal side project for some bluegrass A-listers to a fully-fledged band working its way to the top of the bluegrass world. With a few of those original “sidemen” on board, as well as the addition of several younger faces, Sideline has continued to up their game with the release of their new Mountain Home album, Front and Center.
Opening track Thunder Dan has captivated radio audiences with its catchy chorus and bluesy, mash-style grass. Penned by Josh Manning, it’s a take on the familiar “mountain man” story, featuring a title character with an itchy trigger finger and strong vocals from Troy Boone. The song hit number one last month and was back at the top spot on the Bluegrass Today chart this past week. Lysander Hayes is another rough character, keeping his mama up worrying and praying while he picks and drinks and runs around. Skip Cherryholmes pulls out the clawhammer banjo for this song, which along with Nathan Aldridge’s fiddle, makes for a nice old-time-with-drive vibe.
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