Saturday, August 17, 2019

London blues-rock trio Sun House EP release "Rosedale"...cranked-up and energetic power blues

With a classic blues guitar, tight drum backbone and a singer full of grit with a thumping bass on her shoulder, the Sun House trio are shaping their beloved blues into a 21st Century genre, with great success. This youthful band bring soul and raw emotion to every stage they play. Taking inspiration from B.B. King, Muddy Waters and Howlin Wolf, they merge their roots sound with modern day rock music. Formed in a basement in 2017, they have played a great amount of festivals and gigs across the UK, feeling most at home in the dark and dingy Rock n’ Roll venues.’

Rosedale was recorded at Metropolis studios, London, thanks to an opportunity won through the band's university. Sun House partnered with Pledge Music to help make the EP possible through the help of loyal fans pledging on exclusive items from the bands store.  This partnership has seen the EP be pre-ordered from across the globe, expanding the bands audience to a world wide scale. Tracks on the EP tell stories of old blues legends and heartbreak experienced by their female singer. 

Marty's review: raw and energetic blues-rock is what Sun House dish out and they do it with a confidence and in-your-face attitude that will certainly make you sit up and take notice. Taking their cues from the old masters of the blues and injecting a bit of cranked-up power and sassy vocals, this EP is sure to leave your heart thumping and your ears buzzing.


Monday, August 12, 2019

Blues harmonica player/singer Dov Hammer new album BlueSoul...solid and earthy blues with soul

Welcome to the Blue Soul of Dov Hammer - and get ready for some some hipshakin’, heartbreakin’, earthquakin’ Blues!

For almost 30 years Dov Hammer has plied his trade as singer, songwriter and harmonica player in various bands such as The Blues Rebels, CG and The Hammer and the Daily Blues, as well as backing top notch artists such as Joe Louis Walker, Lucky Peterson, Bernard Allison and many others.

Now comes “BlueSoul”, Dov Hammer’s new album, the first recorded under his own name since 2004’s “Going deep”. While that album was strictly stripped -down, raw acoustic Blues, BlueSoul” is a bubbling pot of Blues gumbo - a variety of styles ranging from Chicago to New Orleans, from traditional to modern and all points in between, all anchored by Hammer’s soulful vocals, soaring harmonica and unique songwriting. The songs deal with love and loss, going through challenges and changes and enduring trials and tribulations with grit and determination and some hard earned humor…

The album cover art was designed by Taloosh, a talented musician in her own right, whose unique art captures the special ambiance of Dov Hammer’s music.

Marty's review: Dov Hammer's "BlueSoul" is exactly what the title implies, solid, earthy blues with heavy doses of soul that is delivered with confidence and finesse from a masterful player, singer and songwriter that certainly knows his way around a good blues song. His deep and passionate vocals are at the fore and his stinging harmonica licks are stylish and throbbing. Add to that a solid rhythm section and you have a contemporary blues release that fires on all cylinders.

official website:

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Finger-style blues guitarist Terry Robb album release "Confessin' The Dues"..exhilarating and blistering

Terry Robb, hailed as one of the finest finger-style blues guitarists on the international scene, recently released his 15th solo recording Confessin’ My Dues. Drawing from the well of country blues to Coltrane, ragtime to Hendrix, Americana to American Primitivism, Confessin’ My Dues represents a lifetime of musical experiences and influences for Robb. Whether backed by his all-star band or flying solo, he moves deftly between instrumental tunes and lyrical numbers in 13 original compositions ranging from blistering instrumental blues and stunning ragtime finger-picking to soulful singing backed by a powerhouse rhythm section. 

Every release that Terry Robb puts out is a cause to celebrate,” says Greg Johnson, president, Cascade Blues Association. “There are not many guitarists in the blues or any genre that you can come by that are as detailed and clever with their creativity. Confessin’ My Dues is yet another example of Terry Robb doing what he does best – leaving us with a sense of awe and joy with every note he plays. It’s a winning formula that continues to lead the pack.”

A special Limited Edition Advance Release of Confessin’ My Dues at Music Millennium in Robb’s hometown of Portland, Oregon, rose to #1 in sales in its debut week.

Stream and download album here:

Marty's review: Terry Robb's latest release is a lesson in finger-pickin' blues guitar that is not only exhilarating to listen to but highlights his masterful strokes that leave one agape with his talent. The album's mix of vocal and instrumental tracks flows along at a blistering pace and has that rawness and emotion that you would expect from a roots-based production. The sparsity of the instrumentation is what makes it unique as it somehow manages a sound that is all encompassing and truly peripheral.  

Friday, August 2, 2019

Vocalist/Saxophonist Scott Ramminger fifth album release Rise Up.. a natural blend of blues, jazz and funk

Scott Ramminger has gone down a slightly different path on Rise Up, his fifth record since 2011. Where his previous studio discs have been heavy on horn sections and backing vocals, “Rise Up’ features only five players -- Ramminger on vocals and tenor sax; Wes Lanich on piano and Hammond B3, Shane Theriot on guitar, Paul Langosch on upright bass, and Emre Kartari on drums.

I set out trying to make a record that had a slightly different sonic footprint, sort of a stripped down, more acoustic vibe. I hired a fine jazz drummer and upright bass player. And at one point, with my producer hat on, I asked them to play less like we were at Blues Alley (a famous DC jazz club) and more like we were playing in a Brooklyn strip club in about 1960,” Ramminger says, laughing. He adds that the another idea that drove the record was taking this more acoustic sound across a wide range of groves and song types.

Rise Up moves from the opening shuffle, “Thinking About You,” to the laid back funk of “Rise Up,” to the old school R'n'B of “Daisy” to the swing of “The Feeling When I’m Falling.” The whole record is pretty woody and natural sounding -- a great sounding Yamaha Grand Piano, a real Hammond B3 and Leslie, killer upright bass, drums, my tenor sax, and a bunch of Shane Theriot’s cool old guitars and funky old tube amps.’

Ramminger contends that the varied backgrounds of the players juxtaposed against the variety of styles and grooves create an interesting effect on the record. “Basically Paul Langosch on bass and Emre Kartari on drums are mostly jazzers. Paul played with Tony Bennett for years. Wes, on keys who went to Berklee and can play all kinds of music, but is primarily a blues and rock guy.” Shane Theriot on guitar can play anything, but is best known for playing in the Neville Brothers and for currently serving as the musical director on “Live From Daryl’s House” and being the guitar man in Hall and Oates. I am mostly a blues, roots, old school R'n'B guy. So it makes for some interesting musical moments, I hope.”

official website:

Marty's review: Scott Ramminger's "Rise Up" is a down to earth, back to roots blend of jazz, funk and blues (with a touch of soul) that resonates with very note and beat and will have you snappin' and tappin' with every track. Scott has surrounded himself with a very proficient bunch of musicians that bring everything together with style and perfection. Scott's vocals are stylish and natural and are a cohesive fit with this tight and finely-calibrated production. Scott has deliberately kept the album to 8 tracks and this works well as it is not over or under done, a clever move (so is it an extended EP or a mini-LP?). Whichever way you look at this will warrant repeat listens.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

The Weary Times release debut self-titled album..steeped in Vintage Blues and early Rock ‘n’ Roll

Boise, Idaho-based The Weary Times recently released their debut self-titled album, The Weary Times.  The ambitious 13 song set was produced by lead singer and songwriter Ryan Curtis with help from the album’s engineer Nathan Barns at Osmosis Studios, Boise, ID and Tom Meyers who mixed the record at Ground Control Recording in Seattle, WA.  

Steeped in Vintage Blues and early Rock ‘n’ Roll, the new record showcases the band’s wide ranging sound, ironed out over years playing bar-to-bar across Idaho and the Pacific Northwest.  The lead-off single “Best for You” is a soulful garage rocker, with Farfisa keys and a big, wall of sound chorus, filled with echo and early 60’s fuzz.  Juxtapose that with do-wop cuts like “Why are you so Lonely” and “Give and Take”, both interesting and darker takes on the staple format of the tender 1950's love song.  “I’m far too old to leave a good looking corpse, but I ain’t young enough to change course” Curtis sings in "Give & Take", a lonely hearts ballad of an aging loner looking back on his wasted youth.  

Hard Times” originally released as single in 2018 and “Piece of Mind” show a more soulful side of the band.  They also showcase keys player Michael Swain’s retro electric piano and over-driven Wurlitzer organ, distinct vintage sounds that are all over the record.  Also, ever present is lead guitar player, Michael Simon’s slow hand playing style reminisce of the British blues rock movement of the mid-sixties. He comes front in center on the album’s bluesier cuts like “I Don’t Know Why", “Anymore”, and “I ain’t Done Drinking”.

Marty's review: The Weary Times' debut release is roots based blues-rock with a 60's vintage style vibe and flavour that is playful and highly listenable. Musically, the electric piano and lead guitar are what drives the album and Ryan Curtis' lead vocals have that soulful-bluesy feel that fit right in with the tight overall production. It's an album that is rich in feel-good sounds and warrants repeat listens.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

The Ellis Mano Band debut album release Here and Now...searing rock and blues-inspired songs

In Switzerland, the members of The Ellis Mano Band are not unlike the Wrecking Crew or the Funk Brothers; top flight studio musicians and elites in the bigger-than-you’d-think Swiss music scene. Vocalist Chris Ellis was a regular on Swiss and German television and radio and on the summer open air concert scene. Edis Mano was a stadium-filling celebrity in the Balkans as a youth, before backing all the top names in Switzerland. Top session bassist Severin Graf is known in Switzerland as “Mr. Groove.” And drummer Nico Looser backed Tracy Chapman and others while working in the US before serving for years in the band of Switzerland’s top late night TV show. He also played on Bob Dylan protegee and band alumnus Scarlet Rivera’s album “Journey With An Angel” (on which Dylan also appeared), and toured with her as well.

But as they spent years supporting other artists, the members never got much time to make music of their own. Now, after a year-long collaboration, the formidable foursome has developed a set of searing rock and blues-inspired songs that make up their debut album Here and Now. With this album The Ellis Mano Band presents a rich tapestry of universal joy and sorrow; the dive into a bottle after a heartbreak in “Whiskey”, the search for home in “Where We Belong,” and the searing sensuality of summer and new love in the title track “Here and Now.”

official website:

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Brett Spaulding and The Psychic Spies release "Livin' To Play"..infectious and instantly accessible

Brett Spaulding was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta and has been on the local music scene for over a decade, sharing the stage as a sideman with The Mike Clark Band, Donald Ray Johnson, Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne and more. Spaulding also co-fronted the Silvertone Devils with guitar virtuoso Brent Wright, under whose guidance Brett studied; learning in depth about chord
inversions, harmony, and most importantly discipline.

Spaulding started The Psychic Spies with bassist Chad Holtzman while doing a regular house gig at The Blues Can in Calgary. Together they started recording demos in Chad’s studio, Stationblissmusic and began work on what would become their newest release, Livin’ To Play.

Livin’ To Play is a guitar driven album, laced with heavy grooves, tight harmonies, and pop melodies. Influenced by a cross section of music including The Beatles, Steely Dan, The Foo Fighters, and Stevie Ray Vaughan. “We were trying to go for simple but sophisticated”, says Spaulding. “We also just followed our hearts and went where the music took us. If a mistake was made, but you could hear something cool in it, it got shaped into a part instead of erased as an

Brett Spaulding and The Psychic Spies put on a great live show full of energy and originality, and have translated that sound to this album successfully. Livin’ To Play is comprised of nine original and masterfully written songs with a multitude of sounds including rock, blues, funk, R'n'B and pop. The Psychic Spies are Chad Holtzman on guitar, bass and back-up vocals, Brent Wright on slide guitar and back up vocals, Stephen Fletcher on Keyboards and Emmet VanEtten on drums, percussion and back up vocals.

Marty's review: "Livin' To Play" is an infectious and instantly accessible release that is produced with heavy doses of R'n'B flavored contemporary blues-rock, crisp and clear harmonies, raunchy guitar licks, tight rhythms and an up-front attitude that grabs you by the throat and gets your attention. The energy and passion shine throughout and it guarantees repeat rotations.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Down Home Blues Chicago Vol.2: Sweet Home Chicago...5 CD set with 94 Page Book...vintage blues at its best

Just released, the definitive collection of Chicago blues music from the mid-1940's to the early 1960's, Down Home Blues: Sweet Home Chicago (WNRCD5106) is the second volume of Chicago Blues post war down home blues music from Wienerworld, recorded from the mid-1940's through the golden decade years of the 1950's up to the early 1960's.

It is a five CD set, packaged in a deluxe digipak with an outer slip case, featuring 135 tracks by 46 artists, all remastered and including alternate takes of well-known recordings. All unissued and alternate take records are from Peter Moody’s private collection, many of which are otherwise unavailable.

  • Features 46 artists who were influential in developing the Chicago blues scene including Elmore James, Howling Wolf and Jimmy Rogers. Includes early down home blues recordings from Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley just before they were on the cusp of taking their music into the new big world of rock and roll. 
  • Includes an outstanding 94 page book, featuring a new essay by renowned blues historian Mike Rowe on the post war Chicago scene; over fifty rare period photographs illustrate the essay throughout; full track details, as well as full sessionography. A feature page section on some of the artists and a five page gallery of original 78 and 45 record labels.
Peter Moody, the compiler, was frustrated that as he worked on the Chicago 5CD Fine Boogie set that was released in 2017, he was finding that he had many more prime recordings and ideas to bring to the ears of the blues music audience so he started work on this follow up collection.

Continuing the mix of well-known artists to the lesser-known, all the recordings are prime Chicago masterworks. With big hitters like Muddy Waters, Little Walter and Sonny Boy Williamson, all their tracks are alternate takes or originally unissued masters by the record companies, most of which are currently not available on release. Mixing with these three there are many more stars of this down home genre including Albert King, Jimmy Reed and Memphis Minnie, again with alternate recordings of their best well-known music. In this golden age of blues, there were so many superb recordings being made it was impossible to issue many of them into the singles record buying market place. Eventually when the new long playing albums began to surface they began to cater for this wealth of music when recording in later years.

Marty's review: I've been collecting compilations of historical blues recordings for many years now, and there have been several outstanding releases which take pride of place, but this most comprehensive and definitive collection of vintage Chicago blues certainly has to the rate as one of the finest ever produced. I can only appreciate the time and effort that has gone in to the creation of this release. The quality and mastering of the recordings is exceptional, and the 94 page accompanying book is crammed with historical mini-biographies about the artists, rare pictures and complete sessionography.

The calibre and plethora of artists is what makes this collection so unique. Along with the more well known artists such as Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Big Bill Broonzy, Otis Spann, Muddy Waters and Elmore James, there are the lesser known performers such as Pete Franklin, Freddie Hall, Morris Pejoe, Herman Ray, Lazy Bill and Big Boy Spires, and its the inclusion of these that creates the adventure in discovering "new" and forgotten tracks and artists that blues fans and music aficionados will more than appreciate and savour.  

The packaging is well constructed with a foldout digipak for the 5 discs, the colour and black and white 94 page book and a sturdy slip case to house them all in. Add this to your blues collection as it will certainly become a collectors item.

Available here: Wienerworld ; Amazon ; Amazon UK

Friday, July 19, 2019

Georgia-based roots artist Aaron Matthew's acoustic guitar and harmonica EP release "Bottle and Blues"

Recently released is a new album collaboration between roots guitarist and songwriter Aaron Matthews and the legendary Freedm of Montreal! The project is called "Bottles and Blues" and is one is for all fans of blues and roots acoustic music! It consists of 4 original songs and 2 cover songs recorded live in studio and on stage.  

Aaron Matthews: "I hope that listening to this album brings you the same transcendence and enjoyment we experienced in writing and recording it. Perfect for contemplating life and grooving away to the blues."

stream and download the album here:

Social Media

Marty's review: Bottle and Blues is an all acoustic roots music treat that embodies the essence of raw blues and recorded "as it happened" with no overdubs or anything fancy. Aaron Matthews and FreedM relay their passion and playfulness of their music by keeping it simple and down to earth. They inject an energy and emotion that is infectious and engrosses the listener into their own little place of blissfulness. I call it "front porch music", just close your eyes and find your own paradise. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Vocalist Paula Harris new release "Speakeasy".. a synthesis of Jazz and Blues with Soul and Funk

Paula Harris’ newest release “Speakeasy” digs even deeper into her connection with mid-century jazz and blues legends. A completely acoustic album featuring a classic trio format of piano, bass and drums, “Speakeasy” is a true synthesis of Jazz and Blues with bits of soul and funk thrown in at times. 

Perhaps the two most surprising elements are the fullness of sound they achieve and the absence of a guitar.  Pianist, Nate Ginsberg (Herbie Hancock, Sly & The Family Stone etc.) bassist, Rich Girard (Mose Allison, Lou Rawls) and drummer Derrick “D’Mar” Martin (Little Richard) create a sound that is simultaneously vintage and modern, and both elegant and earthy. 

The project offers ten new originals and two new songs penned by bay area friends. They also cover Billie Holiday’s “Good Morning Heartache” by giving it a backbeat groove, Donnie Hathaway’s “More Than You’ll Ever Know”, Louie Jordan’s “Is you Is or Is you Ain’t My Baby” and Thelonious Monk’s “Round Midnight”, for which Paula penned all new lyrics and gave a slightly more driving groove. “Speakeasy”also features Big Llou Johnson, the voice of “Bluesville” on Sirius Radio, in the duet “Something Wicked” and the Grammy-winning former Santana trumpet player, Bill Ortiz on several cuts. 

Monday, July 15, 2019

Dundalk, Ireland songwriter Finnian second single release "Where We Go"...a leap of faith

Finnian is back with his second single! 'Where We Go' takes influence from the folk/Americana greats and you can hear a real Neil Young and Van Morrison influence. The song is about dreaming big and how people shouldn't be afraid to make that leap of faith. In it he portrays an image of young love and youthful friendship. It begs the question of what the future holds whilst simultaneously reminding us to live beautifully in the moment, the way young people should, the way everyone should.

Finnian is a songwriter from Dundalk, Ireland. He started out as a folk based singer/songwriter renowned for a strong and dynamic vocal. He has been praised by peers in the industry and audiences throughout Ireland and Europe for his honest, clever and thought provoking lyrics and although playing as a solo acoustic based artist is something that he thoroughly enjoys and executes with a passion and energy that has received critical acclaim he decided to add another dynamic to his music. 

Just over a year ago he put together a band of greatly accomplished musicians in their own right and submerged himself in the hunt for a new sound. Something that would merge lyrics and music more consistently.

His first full album 'Under The Influence', due for release in Summer 2019, is the embodiment of two years of hard work and is a hugely ambitious yet solid projection of that sound he was searching for.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Canadian roots and blues artist Brandon Isaak new release "Rise'n'Shine" and engaging

Canadian blues man Brandon Isaak's new album is called Rise ‘N’ Shine and  is a wonderful collection of songs from one of the country’s most beloved artists.

Listeners can expect 13 original tracks that feature smart, engaging lyrics and well thought out arrangements, all with a warm old school vibe. Not just putting out another overly produced blues record with typical blues lyrics was the intent on this latest release. This album has themes of life, love, acceptance, spiritualism and the sixth sense.

As original as they come, Brandon Isaak is an international touring roots and blues artist who captivates his audience and takes them on a journey like a ring master in a circus. His music is passionate and straight from the heart and he can put his listeners in a spellbound trance or keep their feet tapping and
hands clapping with his strong interaction with his audiences. Brandon Isaak always puts the song and the lyrics first. The recording can be primitive or simple, but the song and lyrics are the roots of the tree.

Isaak’s affinity for the rawness and spontaneity of the blues is second to none, as anyone who has had the privilege of being a part of his audience will tell you. He brings a firebrand style of guitar as well as incredibly stirring vocals that truly has to be witnessed to be appreciated! He is very much in the moment
as he rips it up, and we know you'll be impressed with the caliber of showmanship within his performance of songs & stories by this great Canadian artist.

official website:

Monday, July 8, 2019

Gypsy-Folk band The Fed Peasants upcoming release "Humble Pie"..intoxicating and blissful

The Fed Peasants are an unsigned gypsy-folk band based in Adelaide, Australia. They have an album coming out on July 18th called 'Humble Pie'.

The band is a 6 piece, consisting of: Guitar, Violin, Piano, Bass, Percussion & Vocals. 

The band members are:  
Thompson Crowley (Songwriter)- Vocals, Guitar
Adriana Carmona- Vocals, Shaker
Shivani Preston- Piano, Backing Vocals
Simon Despoja- Violin, Vocals
Craig Maxworth- Bass
Solomon Kumar- Percussion

They play catchy, upbeat, melodic gypsy-folk music, with moving group vocals. The songs cover a range of social, political & personal issues. They pride themselves on being very original, blending such styles as: Jazz, Blues, Folk, Bossa Nova, Rock and Pop.

The band originated in Scotland as a medieval-themed jazz protest group, where they recorded their first album, 'Best before: 1760'. However, after 18 months lead singers/songwriter Adriana and Tom moved to Spain putting an end to the Scottish portion of the band's legacy. Last year it reformed in Adelaide, Australia, after Tom met fellow conservationists Shivani and Simon, and then later rhythm section Craig and Solomon. The band has been performing around Adelaide since then and is gearing up for the release of their second.

Marty's review: this is a most refreshing and original sounding release that is beautifully produced and a sheer delight to listen to. The album features 9 original tracks all written by Thompson Crowley. With mostly acoustic instruments, very melodic and bright vocals and harmonies, and songwriting that is clever and tender, The Fed Peasants are emotionally rich and deliver their songs in a polished flow that is intoxicating and blissful. You'll be singing along to the tunes after a couple of plays.

stream the album HERE

official website:


Sunday, July 7, 2019

California based singer/harmonica player John Clifton new album "In The Middle of Nowhere" pumped

Rip Cat Records is proud to present In The Middle Of Nowhere, the latest album from John Clifton. The California based singer/harmonica player, whose legend continues to grow with every release, seamlessly translates his on stage blend of West Coast and Chicago Blues, '50s style hard R'n'B and high-energy vintage Rock'n'Roll to the studio for 11 tracks that sizzle and shake to perfection. 

"The new record is the live band, the guys who I play with every night," he comments, "so it definitely has more of a live feel to it." Clifton's singing and playing have never been better as he continues to blur the lines between multiple genres; he never lets the blues slip out of sight while touching on everything from soul to jazz to R&B and even country.

In The Middle Of Nowhere is the follow-up to his critically acclaimed 2018 release, Nightlife (which spent six months in the Top 50 Contemporary Blues charts, hit the Top 10 on Sirius/XM's Rack Of Blues, #11 on Living Blues Radio, and finished the year at #72 on Roots Music Report's Top 200 Contemporary Blues Chart). …Nowhere features five all-new originals, along with six covers of songs by artists as diverse as Lightning Slim and Merle Haggard. Clifton's ability to craft a unifying thread between his own originals and those disparate covers is what sets him apart from the pack.

Marty's review:   John Clifton is back with his wailing harmonica and energy pumped roots blues and rock'n'roll that comes at you like a runaway freight train and a solid beat that's infectious, raw and ecstatic. The production is essentially "live" and captures John and his band in full flight with their riveting and rollicking sound that is soulful, bluesy and just plain exciting!

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Quebec's Mister Goodfaith releases new album "Big Mistake"....haunting melodies that heal the soul

 Recently released is the newest album from Quebec's Mister Goodfaith

A medical doctor by day and an accomplished musician and passionate songwriter by night, Fabien Bonnefoy (aka Mister Goodfaith) combines his two lives by giving it all to each one. A one of a kind out there in a musical landscape full of carbon copies, Mister Goodfaith walks boldly between studio and stage with talent, personality, and stories that have helped to make him a popular and beloved artist in his home province of Quebec

His haunting melodies caress and heal the soul with the same dedication and commitment that goes into treating a bruised body in his medical practice. The journey will take you from his home studio to the cabins from Nashville (USA), to Québec and Paris, (France) with some stops in the back rooms of cafes concerts to festival stages along the way. 

Big Mistake was mixed and mastered in Nashville, by Michael Mechling, F.Reid Shippen and Dan Shike. 

Witness this unique story of music and art and the non-typical life of a medical doctor and master musician.

Official Website here:

Friday, June 28, 2019

Keyboardist/Singer Luca Kiella Chellini debut EP release "Figure It Out"..blues infused with soul and funk

Hammond Organ and piano virtuoso and singer Luca Kiella Chellini recently released his debut project, the EP "Figure It Out" . Longtime keyboard player for Alligator Records artists and world touring guitarist Toronzo Cannon, Kiella finally brings the focus on his own band.

He is proud of his Italian origins, but blues music called him to the United States in his mid twenties, and he found a new home in Chicago.

Luca Kiella delivers high-energy performances, blues infused with soul, funk and New Orleans grooves. The struggle of finding his real identity in life and music is a core part of Luca’s songwriting, with a musical and personal heritage that makes him truly unique.

The new EP has all these elements in it. The title track “Figure It Out” is emblematic for Kiella’s (and most everyone’s) never-ending quest of finding ourselves. Luca pays tribute to his biggest influences Jon Cleary and Ray Charles, showcasing his skills on the piano and the Hammond Organ, his instruments of choice together with Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer and Clavinet.

So Many Questions”, the closing track of the EP, delivers an intimate moment with only piano and vocals, digging deeper in the story of the journey of the artist.

official website:

Marty's review: This very impressive debut release is a real treat for fans of piano-based blues ( and all blues for that matter). With a sound that is reminiscent of 60's soul artists like Booker T and the MG's and Billy Preston, Luca takes these influences and injects his own style and artistry to create an upbeat and feel-good collection of compositions that will certainly win him new fans and extend his talents even further.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Canadian Blues/Roots Artist Michael Jerome Browne album "That's Where It's At!"..blues and soul connection

Michael Jerome Browne is a three-time Canadian Folk Music Award winner (Traditional Singer, 2015; Solo Artist, 2012 and 2008), Maple Blues Award winner (with 32 nominations since 1999), Kerrville (Texas) New Folk Finalist, four-time Juno Award Nominee in both the Roots/Traditional and Blues categories. He is a multi-instrumentalist, a songwriter, and a living encyclopedia of American Roots music

That’s Where It’s At!, the new album on Borealis Records, is Michael Jerome Browne’s latest collection, focusing on soul music through the lens of a traditional blues player. Recorded largely live off the floor in Sherbrooke and Montréal (Québec) and Hamilton (Ontario), Michael’s fingerstyle guitar and warm, unaffected vocals are front and centre, accompanied only by John McColgan’s funky drumming on five songs. 

This album focuses on the connection between blues and soul, the stripped-down accompaniment consisting only of Michael’s guitar, with drummer John McColgan on five tracks. Vocal guests include Harrison Kennedy, Roxanne Potvin and Eric Bibb. Five originals are mixed in with songs from Sam Cooke, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Al Green, and Stevie Wonder, as well as two spirituals from way back- the roots of gospel and soul.

official website:

Marty's review: Michael Jerome Browne serves up a generous taste of raw, rootsy blues on this latest release. With some expert guitar playing and his slightly throaty vocals, he takes the essence of the original blues and marries it with a dose of tasty soul flavour. With a mix of several original compositions from Michael and covers of soul and blues classics, this is an enjoyable listen from start to finish.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Soulful writer and performer Sam Wickens debut album release "All I've Seen"...poignant and transparent

Sam Wickens, from Bangor Co. Down, Northern Ireland is a mesmerising solo performer, gifted with the talent to arouse the soul with haunting melodies laced with poignant lyrics sung with his trademark transparency of spirit.

Compared to the likes of Jeff Buckley, John Martin, Paolo Nutini and Lou Reed, Sam is a soulful writer and performer with a restless creativity, conveying a personal blend of Soul, Blues, Gospel, Folk and Indie. This young and gifted 20-something artist humbly plies his craft with a focused sincerity, and has created a style his own: consistently delivering on his reputation as a bewitching live performer.

In 2016 Sam performed at the prestigious Belfast Nashville Songwriters Festival, Nashville, Tennessee, where he sang to an entranced audience at the famous Bluebird Café in Nashville.  Sam also performed at 'The Factory' in Franklin Tennessee.  This event was filmed by Music City Roots and beamed live into 60 million homes across the U.S.

In 2017 Sam was taken under the wing of legendary American record producer Tony Visconti (producer of scores of albums by major artists including: David Bowie, T.Rex, Paul McCartney, Damon Albarn, Moody Blues, Marc Almond, Kaiser Chiefs, etc). Visconti’s mentorship led to Sam working closely with music icons including Stuart Copeland, Nitin Sawhney, and Imelda May, and performing live at Union Chapel London supported by legendary saxophonist Howey Casey and top afro-urban band the Compozers.  Sam’s mentorship under Tony Visconti was featured on a SkyArts documentary ‘Tony Visconti’s Unsigned Heroes’.

On his new release Sam says 'I wanted to create a family of songs, I needed an open space to be able to get different aspects of my mind out! I wanted to make something new, something not everyone will like, but they all will respect. Music is my way of communicating with people and the world. 'Falling' is honesty, when you don’t want to be honest or simply you can’t.'

Marty's review: This very impressive debut release by Sam Wickens shows a maturity and profoundness that is seldom heard by a performer of such a young age. Sam's lyrics have a sense of introspection and sensitivity that engage the listener in a binding fashion that is intoxicating and mythical. The production has a sparse sound in terms of instrumentation yet is spacious and ethereal in its overall impact. Sam's vocal style is striking and primal and perfectly adapted to his songwriting skills. The songs are richly textured in their construction and will reverberate with repeated listens. Highly recommended.