Friday, May 24, 2019

Atomic Road Kings release "Clean Up The Blood"..recorded in mono on vintage analogue equipment


Clean Up The Blood mixes the soul, dynamics, and grit of traditional American roots and blues music with a nod at modern society and stories of modern living. The album was recorded live at Atkinson’s own Bigtone Studios using vintage gear and all-analog equipment from the 1940's and 1950's, creating an original sound born of 1950's gospel, blues, rock'n'roll and more.

The Atomic Road Kings is the project of two musical powerhouses; veteran Orange County harmonica man Eric “Jailhouse” Von Herzen, long-time side man for Walter Trout, Social Distortion, Kid Ramos, Junior Watson, and the 44's, among others; and the brilliant young multi-instrumentalist Big Jon Atkinson, also the back-up guitarist for Kim Wilson’s solo project. 

Atkinson’s raw vocals and moody guitar and Von Herzen’s rich harmonica tones create the perfect vehicle for Atkinson’s word-wise lyrics. There is no roots band today that more masterfully builds on the tradition of classic American music, deeply authentic enough to thrill any purist, while musically sophisticated enough to please the most contemporary audiences.

facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AtomicRoadKings



Marty's review: The Atomic Road Kings serve up a big beefy slice of traditional electric roots blues on this latest release. Recorded "live" to tape on analogue equipment it comes back at you in glorious mono and sounds just sensational! With a stellar line-up lead by Jon Atkinson on lead guitar and vocals and Eric Von Herzen on wailing harmonica, this is powerhouse raw blues at its best and will leave you gasping for more. A real treat for blues and roots fans.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Roots artist Aaron Matthew releases debut EP "Steppin' Stones"...a breath of philosophical fresh air


Aaron Matthew was born in Jacksonville, Florida and raised in the rural Deep South of Georgia, but people think he's from California for some reason. The Deep South is a strange place that forever embedded the blues, jazz, funk, folk, and hip-hop into his songwriting and his soul.

He's been performing music live since 2007 when he got his first gig at a local cafe playing for coffee and tips. In 2012, he began to awaken and was compelled to shift realities. He sold nearly all of his possessions and bought a one-way ticket to a foreign country. He didn't know anyone and didn't speak the language. In exchange for working, he was blessed to live on an organic farm. There, he built permaculture gardens, took care of the land and animals, and spent countless hours meditating with Mother Earth. 

Today, he still calls the Dominican Republic home, but travels often to the U.S. to visit family and tour. He performs live regularly and also works as a professional cannabis industry writer and researcher. 




He has just released his debut EP "Steppin' Stones" and says he couldn't be happier with it. He gained a lot from making the songs and hopes that they bring you the message that you need as they have done for him. 

You can download the EP below:
https://aaronmatthewmusic.org/new-album   
https://aaronmatthew.bandcamp.com/album/steppin-stones

Social Media and website
https://www.aaronmatthewmusic.org
https://www.instagram.com/bottlesandbluesband/
https://www.facebook.com/bottlesandblues/      




Marty's review: Aaron Matthew's exposes his freewheelin' spirit and "simple" approach to life on this very impressive debut. A combination of acoustic and electric tracks with a slightly reggae/Caribbean feel makes this an enjoyable and satisfying set of songs that allows one to breathe in the "philosophical" fresh air and enjoy the eternal sunshine (even if you physically can't!). 

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

The Burndown Brothers Blues Band release "Beautiful Soul" and "Can't Go Back"..Texas-style blues


The Burndown Brothers Blues Band is not your run-of-the-mill, fedora and Cuban shirt-wearing "wasn't that a fun show, honey?" kind of blues band.

Showcasing a blazing two-guitar Texas-style blues attack, a thunderous rhythm section and powerhouse vocals, they live up to their namesake every show and burn the house down.  

So if you're ready for a fiery blues show that's full of groove, and you don't mind having your face rocked clean off your noggin, make some time to forget about your worries and get lost in a soul-scorching set from one of Phoenix's hottest blues acts . It's guaranteed to move you. 


Beautiful Soul (view on YouTube)


official website: https://burndownbrothers.com





Can't Go Back  (view on YouTube)

Saturday, May 18, 2019

What makes the blues sound like the blues?...article excerpt


What makes the blues sound like the blues?

By Chris Slattery - excerpt from https://www.strathmore.org/shades-of-blues

From the difficult lives of formerly enslaved African Americans in the Deep South came the blues. Those humble, hardscrabble origins and the African musical heritage of the performers helped shape the genre and its main elements. Let’s take a look at some of the characteristics that make a song a blues song.

Call-and-Response
One element of the blues traces its roots back to the fields. There toiling slaves sang not just to pass the time at their tedious, backbreaking work picking tobacco and cotton but also to communicate. The pattern they often used in their work songs was called call-and-response. In this singing, a leader sings a line, and the group answers. For example, the leader might sing “I’m going home tomorrow” and members of the group might respond “I’m going with you.” Coded messages disguised in the songs—just meaningless melody to the overseer or slave master—could lead the most daring to a spot on the Underground Railroad. The call-and-response pattern became part of some blues songs. You might hear a singer call and other singers respond, a performer sing a call and then respond with an instrument, or a musician perform a call-and-response entirely with instruments.

Lyric Structure
Perhaps one of the easiest clues to identifying a blues song is the pattern of the lyrics, or words. You’ll often hear 3 lines of rhyming lyrics, typically expressing very strong emotions. The singer sings a line and then repeats it (though it might be sung slightly differently the second time to emphasize the emotion being expressed). The singer then sings a different third line that often responds to or reflects on the previous 2 lines. Notice this pattern (also sometimes referred to as AAB) and the rhyme in “Hound Dog,” first performed by blues singer Big Mama Thornton and later adapted into a rock ’n’ roll  song by Elvis Presley this way:

You ain’t nothing but a hound dog, cryin’ all the time
You ain’t nothing but a hound dog, cryin’ all the time
You ain’t never caught a rabbit and you ain’t no friend of mine.

And notice that this is just one element of the blues that paved the way for rock ’n’ roll  music!

Read the full article here:
https://www.strathmore.org/shades-of-blues/education-portal/blues-clues




Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Song crafter Paul Nelson new album release "Over, Under, Through"...a roots music treasure



Song crafter, blues explorer and mystery muser Paul Nelson brings the music home with his new album, Over Under Through. Traveling through a landscape of blues, roots, and folk, Paul delivers a musical experience that captures and inspires with songs like “Ghost in the Basement”, “Color It Blue”, “Go Down Ezekiel” and the title song. 

With the release of this album listeners will discover that Paul’s music does not easily settle into any one musical format, but is a masterful blend of American roots and blues, gospel, folk, rock and jazz.

Recorded outside Boston in Newburyport MA and produced by Tom Eaton, the new album is a showcase for the writing and playing that comes after many years of pursuits outside of music.  Nelson has assembled a stellar band of New England folk and blues icons to bring these songs to life, including guitarist Kevin Barry, drummer John Sands, bassists Richard Gates and Paul Kochansky, and vocalist Kristin Cifelli. The recordings were made at Universal Noise Storage and completed in October of 2018 with guest contributions from Nelson’s mentor Ellis Paul and Bay area horn player Jeff Oster. 

Drawing inspiration and direction from genre-bending artists like Amos Lee, Ray Lamontagne, and Lyle Lovett, Paul’s heartfelt, rootsy songwriting and passionate live performances are sure to delight and charm fans across a wide range of musical tastes and backgrounds, and with the release of Over Under Through should resonate in listening rooms, house concerts, open mics, and churches throughout New England and beyond.

official website: https://www.paulnelsonofficial.com



Marty's review: Paul Nelson's multi-genre album is a treasure of roots music that will inspire, delight and touch the heart strings in many ways. With a warm and expressive voice, he delivers 10 self-penned tunes plus his rendition of Johnny Cash's "I Walk the Line" in a sensitive and emotional tone that can send shivers down the spine and pierce the senses from all directions. The equally talented musical accompaniment fits right in and production values are top-notch. Good one, Paul!


Tuesday, May 7, 2019

singer/songwriter Alf Hale releases new album "The Rainy Season"...human emotions from the dark side



Having spent almost a decade in the wilderness, singer/songwriter Alf Hale had a spectacular return to the music scene with his EP 'Misanthrope' which chronicled his remarkable journey from the depths of alcoholism to his eventual redemption.

This was swiftly followed up by his debut album 'City on a Hill' which saw Alf, accompanied by fiddle player Jade Morris, channel the dark underbelly of Southern American Country, Folk and Blues infused with his unmistakable English charm.

Hoping to build on the success of his first two releases comes "The Rainy Season", which sees Alf yet again take on a new musical direction. Unlike City On a Hill, a more stripped back affair, The Rainy Season saw Alf take to the studio with a full band in tow delivering a fuller, darker sound. 




Marty's review: Alf Hale's latest release is a roots-based, 11 track gem that sees him tackling subjects of human emotions like love and loneliness and presenting them with a genuine, honest and beautiful delivery that tugs at the heart strings like an open book. The instrumentation is dark and sparse with a country tinge on some tracks but also increases in volume on others. Alf's vocals are clear and sculptural and his songwriting skills certainly invites the listener to pick up on each word and verse. An excellent effort that needs to be heard.





You can find links to Alf's socials and music below:
Bandcamp:  https://alfhale.bandcamp.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alfhaleofficial/
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/0lc5CsQyvDTGTQhy04UGId
iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/alf-hale/1454978502

Saturday, May 4, 2019

singer/songwriter Danny Lynn Wilson release "Peace of Mind"...a personal collection of original roots recordings


After years of traveling along life’s dusty roads, Danny Lynn Wilson has emerged sharing his “Peace of Mind” - a personal collection of original roots recordings expressing his profound inner experiences. Polished with the persistent help of his band and the grinding force of time, these songs
received a new breathe when Danny was introduced to producer/multi-instrumentalist Dave Gross. The addition of the subtle nuisances of Dave’s skill transcend the music to a higher dimension. Guided by the natural ebb and flow of the universe they freely explore themes such as love, longing and kindness through the blues while challenging the listening to become a better person.

Throughout all the ups and downs, Danny has discovered the power in the intimate connection of the universal language that is music. His honest approach to song writing encourages all that the everyday struggle is worth the experience garnered as we travel through life. By maintaining the belief that he is forever a beginner, childlike insight comes humming effortlessly over his humble voice on tunes such as “Long Way Home”, “Love Only You” and “Peace of Mind”. Above all, this album portrays a majestic triumph over darkness, convincing us to look for the positive despite what life throws in our direction.

If you have peace of mind, you can find happiness under the most difficult circumstances.


official website: http://www.dannylynnwilson.com

Marty's review: This roots-based, slightly country-tinged release by Danny Lynn Wilson shows a masterful story teller who is open to sharing his life's experiences and observations in a wry and sometimes poignant way but also with honesty and a moody feel that is compelling and genuine. The production rocks in places and is sometimes sparse but beautiful, and producer Dave Gross manages to capture the essence of Danny's sculptural style that is expressive and richly textured.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Award-winning bluesman and multi-instrumentalist Al Lerman releases his third studio album Northern Bayou



Bluesman Al Lerman is a multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter. He was founder and leader of the 2X JunoAward-winning band FATHEAD, and along the way built a solid career touring as an acoustic solo act, accompanying himself on guitar and rack harmonica. An engaging and skilled artist, he is regarded among the top harmonica players in the country and his prowess on the instrument has earned him no less than ten Maple Blues Award nominations.

Northern Bayou is his third solo release. the album offers up a tasty acoustic/electric musical gumbo that will not only please fans, but will undoubtedly make many new ones as well. Produced by Alec Fraser (bass), Lerman is also joined by Lance Anderson (piano/organ) and Chuck Keeping (drums). Special guest Morgan Davis (guitar) adds to the mix on the rollicking harp instrumental “Delta Stomp” which highlights Lerman’s masterful prowess on that particular instrument.



Recorded live in the studio over two days with minimal overdubs, the disc’s eleven standout tracks capture the fun and excitement that is generated when a handful of seasoned pros (who also happen to be very good friends) get together to play.

Lerman’s talent as a songwriter and storyteller shines brightly as he explores a wide variety of subjects including love, mortality, the joy of music, fishing, coming home, prejudices, sorrow and deception. The lone cover included in this set, the traditional American song “Deep Ellum Blues” (about the tough Dallas neighbourhood where blues legends Blind  Lemon Jefferson and Leadbelly hailed from) serves up an infectious groove that is wider than the Rio Grande.

Website:
http://www.allermanmusic.com



Marty's review: this latest outstanding release from Al Lerman has the word FUN written all over it. Al sounds like he has having a grand time here with effervescent instrumentation that's roots based with pumping piano, wailing harmonica, ecstatic guitar licks and very soulful vocals. The songwriting is top-notch as he takes us on a journey through his favourite subjects and pastimes. An enjoyable treat that is guaranteed regular spins. Thanks Al!


Sunday, April 28, 2019

Cara Being Blue new release "Grit"...sassy blues and rock with a Nashville twang


Grit is an eclectic mix of sassy blues and rock with a Nashville twang from Music City-based blues artist Cara Being Blue. Her own world-class band is joined by select friends, including NY Blues Hall of Fame guitarist Dave Fields and former Allman Brothers guitarist Jack Pearson. Cara dedicates Grit, her first full-length album, to women with grit, especially two close friends who, after fighting with integrity and grace, passed away of cancer.

As a popular pro blues jam host, and following the successful release of her debut EP in 2016, Full Throttle, Cara is already familiar to blues fans. Mentored by Boston’s great “Regal Queen of the Blues” Shirley Lewis, Cara left Boston for Nashville over a decade ago to develop her live performance skills. She quickly won the hearts and respect of the local industry, blues radio, her peers, and fans. Cara and her band have been nominated for blues awards four years in a row by the Nashville Industry Music Awards. In 2016, Cara was honored by the Tennessee Rhythm and Blues Society for her contributions to the blues genre.

official website: http://carabeingblue.com



Marty's review: Cara Being Blue's aptly titled album release is a powerful force of rocking blues and soul that is delivered with a passion and energy that comes at you with all guns blazing. With a confident and no-nonsense approach to her music Cara's dynamic vocals and poignant songwriting grab you by the throat and make you sit up and pay full attention. The production on the album is a wall of tight rhythms, bursts of searing guitar licks and an overall sound that is soaring and top-flight.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Critically acclaimed Guitarist/Vocalist JD Simo new album release "Off At 11"..an electric tour de force


Revered guitarist/vocalist, JD Simo, recently released his latest album, "Off At 11". The Chicago-born, Nashville-based recording artist channels classic sounds from acid rock, traditional blues, folk, soul, to free form jazz, reinvigorating them into a kaleidoscope of sound for a new generation of music lovers. NPR declares, “Simo sounds as if it comes to us straight from 1968.”  

Produced by Simo in association with co-manager Michael Caplan, OFF AT 11 consists of 8 tracks that are laid out on the record like a musical journey through gifted guitar playing and singing, incredible rhythm section arrangements and lyrics that convey that “all the feels” momentum. One can almost touch the ghosts of the brilliant, wounded masters of the blues who have shaped and guided JD’s art and craft.  Simo's brand of blues is like the surge of sound from a classic car, say a Chevy V-8. It starts with a roar, then a rumble, then a low, throaty hum. The explosion of the gas in the cylinders are like emotional triggers - liberating, visceral and intense. 



The recording of this rocking, blues driven, electric tour de force took place over a three day period in the summer of 2018; “Our next summer of love,” says Simo. Recorded during a brief break in touring, including Simo’s first shows as a guest of Phil Lesh and Friends, he and his band laid down these musically dense and inspiring tracks in a “groovy space” to lay down something authentic, filled with fun and no edits, no tricks.  “Just honesty and a tape machine” he explains. Simo continues, “There’s an underlying theme of LOVE that permeates the album. Both outward love but also inner and self love. These days, everything is so heavy, but I just want to point out some joy, love and deep passion; in this world, we all share that spirit. OFF AT 11 does that.”


official website: https://www.simo.fm

Thursday, April 18, 2019

blues-rock outfit Land Mammal release self-titled debut EP..a wholly unique adventure


Land Mammal are 5-piece rock/roots outfit from Dallas,Texas and have just released their debut, 4-track, self-titled EP. Their creed is very intriguing: "Sprouting from the earth, an electrical current takes hold. The sound grows within, gaining power and momentum to break free from the soil. Bursting with synergy a new sound echoes strong. All of life unified underneath one sun."

Marty's review: This very impressive release has an electric blues/rock feel with a nod to 60's psychedelia/prog-rock. Driving guitars, classic-rock style vocals and a solid beat provide a surrounding sound that encompasses the soul and resonates as a wholly unique adventure. Favourite tracks for me are "Earth Made Free"and "Dark With Rain".

Land Mammal are:
Kinsley August - lyrics, vocals 
Will Weise - guitar 
Phillip PJ Soapsmith - bass 
Stephen Smith - drums 
True Turner - key, synth

www.landmammalmusic.com

Sunday, April 14, 2019

“It’s About Time” is the debut album from Susan Williams & The Wright Groove..polished and refined



It’s About Time” is the debut album for this group of veteran musicians from the Chicago area. Together for three years, they bring their combined experience and the use of TWO basses to wow the listener with their unique, funky approach to the blues. They were selected to compete in the 2018 International Blues Challenge, and the CD was selected to compete in the 2019 IBC in the Best Self-Produced CD category.

This stellar band consists of Susan Williams, Darryl Wright, Mike Gallemore, and Rob Davis. The album was recorded at Studio 401 in Georgetown, IL. Susan’s voice is reminiscent of Bonnie Raitt and Susan Tedeschi, with a tinge of Janis Joplin, and has been described as “rich and smoky, with perfect raspiness.”



official website: https://susanwilliamsandthewrightgroove.com

Marty's review: This very impressive debut album from Susan Williams and The Wright Groove is a polished and refined production that highlights the talent and songwriting skills of all players involved. With Susan's soulful vocals and the band's tight and masterful playing, including the double bass attack, this combination of contemporary blues, soul, funk and groove with have you snapping your fingers and wiggling your toes to this collection of upbeat and throbbing numbers.


Friday, April 12, 2019

Texas Americana storyteller and songwriter Jarrod Dickenson EP release "Under A Texas Sky"


Storytelling is something of a Texas tradition. Tall hats and even taller tales are woven into the fabric of The Lone Star State, and singer-songwriter Jarrod Dickenson can spin a yarn with the best of them. Hailing from Waco, now based in Nashville via Brooklyn, Dickenson spends most of his time on the road bringing his own particular brand of soulful Americana to a wide variety of music loving audiences around the globe.

"Under A Texas Sky is a collection of songs by classic, Texas-born artists that have inspired me and my own musical journey. As a native Texan, I’ve always been aware of the rich musical heritage of my home state, but as one often does with the place they’re from, I took it for granted. It wasn't really until I moved away from Texas that the music that grew up from that soil truly started to grab a hold of me. For quite a while now I’ve wanted to pay tribute to the many great artists from The Lone Star State, and thus the first installment of Under A Texas Sky was born. On this first EP I recorded my own renditions of classic songs by rock and roll crooner, Roy Orbison, the soulful R&B singer, Esther Phillips, the red-headed stranger known as Willie Nelson, Americana trailblazer, Doug Sahm and the master songsmith, Guy Clark."



"His songs carry an independent spirit and grit... a hard-bitten, yet romantic eye that seems bred into Lone Star Songwriters"-Q Magazine

"A smokey-toned Texan with a smooth line in Americana-Soul..."-Uncut Magazine

"Painting extraordinarily cinematic pictures with his words..."-Rocking Magpie


"In the tradition of old southern Americana, but with a feel of something current; storytelling with soul."-Chris Hawkins, BBC Radio 6 Music

www.facebook.com/jarroddickensonmusic
www.twitter.com/jarroddickenson

www.instagram.com/jarroddickenson

Marty's review: Jarrod Dickenson's renditions of songs by his fellow Texan singers and songwriters are delivered in a Roots/Americana style that highlight the emotions and lyricism of the originals. His respectful and passionate approach is more than complimentary and the production has a warm feel to it that is as engrossing as it is satisfying. Favourite track for me is Guy Clark's Dublin Blues.

Friday, April 5, 2019

singer/songwriter Willa Vincitore sophomore release "Choices"...accomplished and exceptional


Willa Vincitore is a singer/songwriter based in the Hudson Valley region of New York. She arrived on the scene seemingly out of nowhere in 2017 with her first release Better Days, which was met with high praise and held its own for six consecutive months on the Roots Music Report’s Top 50 contemporary blues albums of 2017. Half of the singles charted, an impressive debut for a previously unknown, independent artist performing all-original material.

Reflections in Blue blogger Bill Wilson said, "Willa Vincitore has one of those voices that will stay with you for life. Good, even great, vocalists are a dime a
dozen...but every now and then, someone comes along who brings everything back into perspective in a big way.”

Her sophomore release, Choices, continues to showcase her eclectic songwriting, digging deeper lyrically and rejecting classification in any one
genre. Many influences can be heard here, ranging from ‘70s and ‘80s pop, rock and R'n'B, to Americana, blues and even gospel tones. Unlike Better Days, which was entirely original material, Willa chose to cover one tune on this release, paying homage to Annie Lennox with her funky cover of “Money Can’t Buy It.” She brought back many of the top-flight musicians from Better Days, including co-producers Lee Falco and Brandon Morrison (The Restless Age, Donald Fagen, Marshall Crenshaw, Amy Helm). Falco also played drums on the release, while Morrison engineered and mixed.





official website: https://www.willaandcompany.com

Recently inducted into New York State’s Blues Hall of Fame, Vincitore spent the early part of her stage career backing Chris O’Leary (Levon Helm’s Barnburners and The Chris O’Leary Band) as an original member of his band, but she’s been performing on her own with a collection of extraordinary musicians since 2013.


Marty's review: The accolades that have been bestowed upon Willa Vincitore are certainly well deserved, even more so after listening to this latest release. Powerful, soulful and passionate blues are what Willa delivers on this 10 track production that is everything a contemporary blues album should sound like. The accomplished and exceptional songwriting on the 9 originals each stand out in their own individual way and her cover of Annie Lennox' "Money Can't Buy It" is treated with style and sophistication. Her backing musicians come to the fore with a tightness and vitality that seal this all round top-flight effort.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Garage/Blues-Rock outfit Resonator release debut album "Swallow Your Concerns"...hypnotic sounds


Sprouting from seeds laid down by modern rock artists such as The Black Keys and The Strokes, a tasty blend of garage/blues rock has melted together to form Resonator. The group was formed by Cincinnati natives Ian Campbell (guitar/vocals) and Jackson Burton (bassist) in 2016 and later joined by Nathan Hoeweler (drums) in 2017.

After experiencing a mainstream studio setting back in 2017, the band decided to self-record their  album, "Swallow Your Concerns." Once hearing about the band's self-recording pursuits, a local Cincinnati friend, and member of "The Never Setting Suns" offered up his basement studio to the band. After months of recording in the basement, audio engineering at Jackson's crib, and spicy band debates, the album was released on January 4th, 2019.



"There are times when you sit down to listen to a record where everything simply falls into place, where anything that might be otherwise perceived as a technical limitation instead is just texture – in short, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. 'Swallow Your Concerns,' the new offering from Cincinnati’s Resonator, is one such example." - Cincy Music

"These guys put on a show and produce a sound so noisy and bluesy it’s hard to believe the band only consists of 3 members. With raspy yet buttery vocals, smooth bass and guitar parts, and hard hitting drums, Resonator is set to take the Cincinnati scene by storm." - In The A.M.

Listen to the album on Spotify


facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ResonatorTheBand/


Marty's review: Resonator's impressive debut album takes me back to the garage-blues of the late 60's to early 70's with a nod to artists such as Jimi Hendrix and Hot Tuna. A down to earth and rootsy production allows the band to stretch their talents to deliver tight rhythms and scratchy, fuzzy guitar work that results in a surprisingly well-rounded and punchy sound that is fluid, focused and at times hypnotic.


Monday, March 25, 2019

Blues guitarist/songwriter Randy Casey 8th album release "I Got Lucky"...rooted in tradition


Randy Casey’s 8th album, I Got Lucky, was inspired by a guitar that Casey beat out Rick Neilsen of Cheap Trick to get. In fact, Casey was getting it back; the 1969 Gibson Les Paul Custom was the first guitar Casey had ever played as a kid. When decades later, the neighbor who had let him play the guitar back then got an offer from Neilsen to buy it, he offered it to Casey first. Casey dug deep, and the neighbor let him make payments, but at last, his first love was his. Immediately, songs began to flow from the guitar, Casey said. It’s that guitar that produces the swampy slide of “Bed Bug Blues,” “Broken Arm Blues,” and That Train,” the Stonesy rock of “One Step Ahead,” and the moody overdrive of “Strange.”

Casey is a consummate guitarist; as Shannon Curfman’s first music director, he has played the largest of stages with the biggest of stars. He’s also gotten his instrumental work placed on NPR’s “All Things Considered” and other national shows. I Got Lucky reveals Casey’s other prodigious talents as well, including creative and clever songwriting that captures the essence of classic blues while contributing tasteful innovations to the genre. The result is a collection of songs that is at once impressively eclectic and firmly rooted in tradition.

official website: https://randycasey.com



Marty's review: Randy Casey is back with an album of pure electric-blues roots that come at you with no holds barred and a confidence and passion that is ever present in his songwriting and guitar playing. There is a rollicking and accomplished feel to the album that is endlessly-playable and will certainly deserve endless spins.



Friday, March 22, 2019

Syracuse-based CLOUTIER release THUNDER ‘N’ LIGHTNING...high-energy blues-rock


Syracuse(NY)-based brothers Mark and Myke Cloutier are an inspired sound rock team on their first album as the band CLOUTIER. Released at the end of 2018, Thunder ‘N’ Lightning features ten tracks of pure, high-energy blues and rock magic. This first ever CLOUTIER band CD came together in between Mark Cloutier’s live concerts with his band The Double Barrel Blues Band.

Combining rock-based and blues-flavored originals, Thunder ‘N’ Lightning is a powerful experience not to be missed by fans of blues-rock giants, from Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix to blues guitar masters like Freddy King, Johnny Winter & Buddy Guy. All original, all rock, Cloutier make blues-rock magic with their powerful, rocking sound.

The album features ten originals featuring the vocals and lyrics of Myke Cloutier and the guitars, music and arrangements of Mark Cloutier. They are also joined by Jose Varona on drums and two bass players Mike Spadaro and Joel Kane.
The music has a taste of garage-rock mixed with rock ‘n’ roll from the height of blues-rock boom of the mid to late 1960's.

official website: https://www.cloutiermusic.com

stream and download the album: https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/cloutier

Marty's review: Cloutier's aptly titled "Thunder'n'Lightining" comes at you straight from the hip with some kick-ass blues-rock that is full of energy and originality. Taking their cues from past masters of blues guitar, these guys have produced an album that is a tour-de-force of electric blues roots with some garage and rock'n'roll thrown in the mix. Passionate vocals and bold guitar licks with a tight rhythm section all combine to make this an impressive and stunning debut.


Monday, March 18, 2019

Swedish songstress Marlene Oak releases new EP Silver Moon...enchanting folk-rock melodies


Swedish songstress, Marlene Oak recently released her new EP, Silver Moon. Oak has already received rave reviews from EARMILK, PopDust, Pancakes and Whiskey, Celebmix, and more. After releasing a couple of songs, she has gone all in as a live artist and built her following on the pub and festival stages around the country. Marlene has enchanted audiences with her folk-rock melodies as the opening act for Miss Li, Whitney Rose, Susto, and she has been a part of the lineup at festivals such as Way Out West, STHLM Americana and Irisfestivalen.  

"Marlene Oak is an exciting, fast rising Stockholm, singer/songwriter who listeners will be mesmerized by..." (Celebmix)

"We can’t help, but smile and listen intently to the richness of the tune. " (Pancakes and Whiskey)



About Marlene Oak:

Growing up on a small island outside Stockholm, singer-songwriter Marlene Oak turned to music as her escape. After spending her teenage years busking on the streets of the Swedish capital’s Old Town, she first got discovered by someone who simply happened to pass by. After releasing a couple of songs, she has gone all in as a live artist, and built her following on the pub and festival stages around the country. Marlene Oak has enchanted audiences with her folk-rock melodies as the opening act for Miss Li, Whitney Rose, Susto, and she has been a part of the lineup at festivals such as Way Out West, STHLM Americana and Irisfestivalen.

My favourite part about being a music creator is playing live. When you play live, there’s something magical happening. Music in itself is magic, and when you stand there and sing your self-written songs, an invisible bond between me and the audience sort of forms. There’s some sort of connection that’s like nothing else I’ve ever experienced. It’s truly amazing” says Marlene Oak.

With a soothing voice that expresses raw emotions, Marlene Oak manages to move her audiences like few other artists can. Influenced by her idols Bob Dylan, Jeff Buckley, Joni Mitchell, Nina Simone and Janis Joplin - one can sense a timeless spirit in her songs.

facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/marleneoak/




Saturday, March 16, 2019

Finnish singer/songwriter/guitarist Dave Forestfield new release Footsteps In The Snow..in fine form


Recently released is Dave Forestfield's 8th album Footsteps In The Snow on Propaganda Records . Forestfield has won awards in both USA (2016) and his home country Finland (2018, 2015). This is the first time Dave is including cover songs on an album.

"I was having fun with my updated Pro Tools recording studio and played some of my old favorite songs more or less newly arranged as well as some unreleased stuff of mine. The spirit of my session was very lighthearted, I had no plan, I was just having fun. Then I thought why not cut some of the songs with a band? Things went real fast and all of sudden I realized I had an album made. My previous album Nobody's World was pretty much just me doing everything and the drummer doing what drummers do. This time I wanted more people getting involved. Members of my current touring band are there plus a bunch of other fellow musicians too."



Dave Forestfield is a singer / songwriter, guitarist and a record producer from Finland, Northern Europe, with musical roots deep in American soil. Blues, soul, country, old rock’n’roll, folk and jazz ballads are where it all comes from.

Among Dave’s merits there’s a Best Film Score award from Nashville, TN, U.S.A. in 2016 and two Song of The Year awards in 2018 and 2015, granted by Finnish Blues Awards.

Forestfield has released seven solo albums, written songs for other artists, produced albums and composed music for theaters. In 2015 there was also a duet album of traditional afro-american gospel songs with the guitar great Jarkka Rissanen.


official website: https://www.daveforestfield.com


Marty's review: "Footsteps In the Snow" sees Dave Forestfield in fine form with a collection of 6 originals and 7 covers highlighting his all-round talents as a singer/songwriter/musician/producer. With a passion for roots-based music his delivery is top-flight and effortless as he comfortably travels from blues to folk to country and everything in between. His newly written tunes are clever and poignant and he does a fine job with covers from the likes of Jerry Jeff Walker, Brian Hyland, Hank Williams and Lennon/McCartney. An endlessly-playable album that is upbeat and highly-listenable. 


Friday, March 15, 2019

Coastal Virginia Bluesman Bobby BlackHat album release Put On Your Red Shoes...a multi-blues experience



Bobby BlackHat blends the influences of Chicago, Memphis, Piedmont, and Delta style blues into a toe tappin’, finger poppin’, hip shakin’ blues experience. This project includes: Something Old (updated versions of previously released songs), Something New (brand spankin’ new songs), Something Borrowed (unique covers of classic songs), and of course Something Blues.

Bobby BlackHat, Coastal Virginia Bluesman, recording artist, producer, harmonica player, vocalist, songwriter, comedian, and actor hails from Cleveland, Ohio and currently resides in Newport News, VA. Bobby is a retired U.S. Coast Guard Commander with 27 years of distinguished service which included serving as Military Aide to the President and being awarded the Coast Guard Medal for Heroism.


What Others Are Saying…

Hallelujah - Bobby BlackHat and his band sound as sharp as ever, on an
album that paints in every shade of the Blues.” Mike Holtzclaw, The Daily Press

Bobby BlackHat Walters is Virginia's Ambassador to the Blues and there
is no better person to hold that title. Every release is a reason to celebrate, and
this one fires on all cylinders. It's just like one of his live shows - entertainment and excitement all at the same time!” John Porter, WCVE Music



Web: https://bobbyblackhat.com

Facebook: https://facebook.com/bobbyblackhatblues