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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!


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Showing posts with label International. Show all posts
Showing posts with label International. Show all posts

Monday, January 6, 2020

Black Hen Music artist: Matt Patershuk - If Wishes Were Horses - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, If Wishes Were Horses, by Matt Patershuk and it's a cool blend of folk, blues and country. Opening with The Blues Don't Bother Me, a springy, modern style country track, has many traces of original country and western music like Patershuk on lead guitar and earthy vocals, super baritone guitar work by Steve Dawson and backing vocals by Kristin Webber and Larissa Maestro and full backing by Gary Craig on drums, Jeremy Holmes on bass, Chris Gestrin on piano and Charlie McCoy on harmonica. I really like the tango styling of instrumental, Horse 1 (For Bravery & Good Fortune) with excellent guitar soloing by Patershuk and Dawson, McCoy on harmonica and Gestrin on keys. Very nice! Alberta Waltz, a country styled ballad, has great feel and authenticity. With Patershuk on lead vocal, clean piano work by Gestrin and Dawson's complimentary steel guitar work, this is definitely on of my favorites on the release. Another track with a distinctive flavor is Velvet Bulldozer with it's country blues styling, the rich vocals of Patershuk, roaring slide work of Dawson, excellent punctuation by Craig and Charlie McCoy's distinctive harmonica sound. Excellent! Real authentic country and western track, Let's Give This Bottle A Black Eye has it all. Patershuk was made to sing this track and Gestrin has studied authentic country piano styling. Dawson seals the deal with his pedal steel guitar... let me say now before the review is over...get this release! There are a few short interludes throughout the release called Horse (1-2-3 &4). Alone, they are hard to review, but they are meaningful little blips featuring Maestro, Gestrin, and Dawson separately which add nicely to the overall composition. Very cool. Wrapping the release is Louisiana flavored country rocker, Red Hot Poker, with a cool balance of raspy vocal by Patershuk, controlled pedal steel by Dawson, electric keys by Gestrin and Holmes on bass. Excellent closer.


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Friday, December 20, 2019

Black Hen Music artist: Big Dave McLean - Pocket Full of Nothin' - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Pocket Full of Nothin', from Big Dave McLean and it has a great feel. Opening with Songs of the Blues, a strutting blues rocker with Big Dave on guitar and vocal, Steve Dawson on excellent slide guitar, Gary Craig on drums, Jeremy Holmes on bass, Chris Gestrin on piano, Malcolm on trumpet, Jerry Cook on bari sax and Dominic Conway on tenor sax. Solid opener. I really like McLean's expressive vocals on Backwards Fool with the National steel guitar behind for contrast and Aiken's muted trumpet as an accent. Very nice. Boogie track, Voodoo Music has a great groove and Dawson's tremolo over his slide work creates a cool shimmer. A strong, slower blues entry is Just To Be With You. McLean creates a real dark atmosphere with his powerful vocals and Dawson's slide work is tight and energized. Very nice. Wrapping the release is ballad, There Will Always Be A Change. With it's springy, country blues styling, McLean and Dawson set a perky pace on vocal and guitar and Aiken, Cook and Conway balance the track nicely with horns. 

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Thursday, December 5, 2019

Fuel Junkie - All Out - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, All Out, from Fuel Junkie and I really like it. Opening with title track rocker, All Out, with horns blazing. Featuring Mark LcClerc on lead vocal and tenor sax, Philippe Brochu-Pelletier on tenor sax, Patrice Luneau on bari sax, Antoine Loiselle on guitar, jean-Francois Charest on bass and Philippe Fleury on drums and adding Lex French on trumpet, Andy King on trumpet, Jean-Nicolas Trottier on trombone and Olivier Lizotte on bass trombone this leaves a powerful vapor trail. High Stress, Low Money has a strong new Orleans feel with tight march style drumming by Fleury and interwoven tenor sax lead by Leclerc and Brochu-Pelletier over the solid bottom of Luneau on bari for a great follow-up. With a low down funky beat Can You Dig It? is a cool bluesy jam with great lead by Charest on bass and Loiselle on slide guitar. Excellent! Slow blues, Bad Luck, showcases the soulful vocals of Leclerc and allows plenty of room for sax and guitar solos. Very nice. Get Out On The Road is a power R&B style track with strong bari sax reinforcement by Luneau and trumpets by French and King. Luneau and Leclerc's sax solos are hot making this one of my release favorites. My favorite track on the release is closer, Push Me Away with it's heavy bass laden bottom and soaring guitar work by Charest. It has it's smooth parts, but this is Fuel Junkie wide open. Excellent closer for a strong release. 

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Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Mark Crissinger - Believe In Love - New release review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Believe In Love, by Mark Crissinger and it's full of surprises. Opening with Believe In Love, with it's romping bottom, courtesy of Jay Stevens on bass and Bill Hicks on drums, Mark Crissinger has the front on lead vocal and guitar, backed by Darcy Phillips on keys and Pierre Komen on sax. Boogie track, I Hear You're Talking, really gives Phillips the floor to work his magic and Crissinger country style vocal and guitar riffs solidify the sound. Another track with a two step feel is La Hoochie Coo with twangy guitar riffs and smooth harmonica by Marty Howe. Heartache and Trouble has a strong melody and with soothing vocals and melodic harmonica line, a definite radio track. My favorite track on the release is Hard No, with it's cool rhythm and catchy tune. Solid guitar work, drum foot work and warm backing gives it that extra punch.  Wrapping the release is country rocker, Hornby with it's springy pace and tight rhythms. Crissinger's vocal lead is cool and his guitar riffs hot, Komen lays nicely on the sax, Howe on harmonica work and another nice piano solo by Phillips gives it the right juice.  

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Thursday, November 14, 2019

Northern Social - Northern Social - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the debut self titled release from Northern Social and I really like it. Like earlier work by Wickens and the Grand Nationals this new release has a lot of edge and genuine blues feel. Opening with Waiting, a strong rugged blues rocker, Dylan Wickens, who handles lead vocal, guitar and bass, paired with Mike Rajna on drums and percussion created a sound that is much bigger than two guys. Solid rhythms, vocals and power guitar makes this a great opener. Am I Wrong has a straightforward rock beat with vibrant rhythm guitar with Wicken's vocals carrying the melody. King Of Hearts has a lumbering blues feel with a heavy accent on the 2 and 4 and a fat fat guitar rhythm. Wicken's lead guitar work is tasty and raw where Rajna's drum work is tight and focused. Very nice. Wrapping the release is Dead Neighbor Blues with an easy acoustic country blues feel. Particularly effective is the simplicity of foot drum and tambourine by Rajna under Wicken's traditional acoustic slide work and solid blues vocals. Strong closer. 

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Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Wentus Blues Band with Duke Robillard - Too Much Mustard - New release review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Too Much Mustard, from Wentus Blues Band with Duke Robillard, and I really like it. Opening with revival style track, Stayed At The Party, these guys are raising the roof. With Robban Hagnas on Bass, Niko Riippa on guitar, Duke Robillard on guitar, Pekka Grohn on piano and Hammond, Daniel Hjerppe on drums and Juho Kinaret on vocal and percussion this track is pumped. Robert Johnson's Judgement Day is up next with a cool modern twist. It maintains the rudimentary feel and Kinaret's vocals are strong, but the interwoven guitars by Robillard and Riippa and Grohn's piano, with harp over the band is terrific. One of my favorite tracks on the release is She's a Killer Hot Blonde, a great boogie with cocky blues guitar style. Excellent! Slower paced, Right In Your Arms, is a super blues ballad and a nice showcase for Kinaret on vocal and with excellent blues guitar solo phrasing by Riippa. High powered boogie and title track, Too Much Mustard, had a great feel and is super platform for Robillard and Riippa on guitar. Shuffle track, You Got My Love, has a great bottom by Hagnas and the rolling piano lines by Grohn give Riippa plenty of room to shine. Wrapping the release is blues rocker, Passionate Kiss with a more radio direct approach. I really like the drum work by Hjerppe on this track strongly featured with a cool piano lead by Grohn under Kinaret's vocal lead. Solid closer. 

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Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Bahool Records artist: The McMaMarr Project - Holla & Moan - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Holla & Moan, from The McMaMarr Project and it's dripping in soul. Opening with title track, Holla and Moan, a romping R&B track John McNamara and Andrea Marr team up vocally making a really cool team. McNamara handles lead guitar backed by Bobby Manuel on guitar, Ray Griffin on bass, Willie Hall on drums, Lester Snell on keys, Scott Thompson on trumpet, Lannie McMillan on tenor sax, and Jim Spake on bari sax. With a solid bass line by Griffin, Throwing Down a Little Love has a real firm beat and great vocal blending highlighted by great blues guitar riffs by McNamara. Soul ballad, History has a taste of country and a nice dash of blues with warm vocals and melody. Definitely the top radio track on the release. Another easy floating vocal track, Something That's Real, blends the honesty of early country music with R&B for a unique soulful blend. Wrapping the release is Blues Brought Me Here, a cool mix of country blues and gospel. McNamara and Marr's vocals are perfect together and this track is a solid representation of the facts. Very cool release. 

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Thursday, October 10, 2019

Quebec's Masterful Harmonicist Guy Bélanger Set To Release Eldorado October 25


Quebec's Masterful Harmonicist  
Guy Bélanger Set To Release Eldorado October 25



Bélanger's sixth solo album coming out via Bros Records









Quebec’s most sought-after harmonica player, Guy Bélanger is set to release his 6th solo album, Eldorado on October 25th on Bros Records. This long-awaited new release features a mix of original blues songs and instrumental gems that highlight his remarkable melodic touch. Eldorado is another demonstration of the top-notch chemistry Bélanger and his band can attain in studio.

This brilliant assemblage of original songs also contains a few surprising covers, of note a delta blues version of Prince's “Sign 'O The Times” and a joyous rendition of Van Morrison’s “Bright Side of the Road”. 

With a storied career that has spanned more than four decades, Bélanger has worked with some of Quebec’s biggest names in music and entertainment including, among others, Celine Dion, Cirque du Soleil, and Bob Walsh. He is a two-time Maple Blues Award winner and since 2003 has won 14 Lys Blues awards.

Eldorado is Bélanger’s most ambitious album to date; the songs are powerfully emotive with twists at every turn. Eldorado is an invitation to the listener into Guy Bélanger’s musical universe through his marvellous songwriting and the top-notch harmonica playing. 

The album and its themes are summed up concisely by Bélanger. 
“Eldorado means (for me) “The Quest”. I love the road I ride, and the pitfalls only give me the courage to move forward…”




TRACK LIST

1.         CARVING THE WIND (3:17)
2.         BRIGHT SIDE OF THE ROAD (5:22)
3.         ELDORADO (3:42)
4.         WHEN WILL I KNOW (6:14)
5.         WICKED (3:52)
6.         HUMMIN’ (5:09)
7.         GANGA (5:22)
8.         SIGN O’ THE TIMES (4:06)
9.         HOPE & FAITH (4:45)
10.       FOUR LITTLE WORDS
11.       STILLWATER (3:49)











Thursday, August 29, 2019

Sunday Wilde & the 1 Eyed Jacks - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release from Sunday Wilde & the 1 Eyed Jacks and she hasn't missed a beat. Opening with Willie Dixon's Evil, a slinky, bluesy number with glistening guitar riffs by Ari, and Wilde's trademark vocals, the band is rolling with Wilde on piano, Arek Chamski on bass and Collin Craig on drums. Dead Man's Clothes is an interesting number with a predominant modified walking base line, percussive rim shot rhythm and cool soaring guitar riffs. Sure to be a crowd favorite, Dead Presidents is a quirky boogie and the inference that everybody loves money... yes they do. Slow blues take on London's It Hurt's Me Too, is a dynamic vocal showcase for Wilde who accompanies herself on piano with only a basic bottom and a really nice guitar solo by Ari. One of my favorite tracks on the release is Spirits up My Friend with it's somber melody and Wilde's vocals paired nicely with her stark piano accompaniment over the solitary bass line of Arek. Wrapping the release is I Guess I Didn't Hear You Right, a simple bluesy ballad with the simplest of backing and iridescent guitar work and blues riffs by Ari.


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Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Debra Power - That's How I Roll - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, That's How I Roll, from Debra Power and it's a full boat of piano laden blues. Opening with All Night Playing The Blues, Debra Power knocks down the door with her powerhouse singing and terrific piano playing. Backed by Chris Byrne on bass and Lyle Molzan on drums, this track is rolling. Title track, That's How I Roll is a slick shuffle with Power way up front on vocal and punchy horns on the top with Mike Clark on tenor sax, Pat Bellveau on bari and Ian David Hartley on trumpet and featuring Tim Williams on slide guitar. Bluesy ballad, Don't Ever Leave Me, shows the richness of Power's vocals with my closest comparison being Rod Stewart. Her piano playing is solid and complimentary and Mike F. Little's B3 work  making this one of my favorite tracks on the release. I'm Comin' Around is a cool piano boogie that really shows off Power's piano prowess and Joey Landreth adds real flair with his slide soloing. Very cool. R&B ballad, Let Me Love You Tonight is another solid showcase for Power's voice and Russell Broom's lead guitar work meshes really nicely with the piano and B3 work of Little. Wrapping the release is power blues rocker, Side On Sue with heavy handed drum work by Molzan and harp work by Steve Pineo. Byrne's rumbling bass line and guitar by Landreth makes this an excellent closer.



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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Jim Zeller - Blues From Another Planet - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the newest release, Blues From Another Planet, from Jim Zeller and it's cool. Opening with blues rocker, I Grew Up In Black And White, Jim Zeller is back with his latest and most interesting release. With it's slightly funky, almost David Bowie like feel, the track has a great rhythm and Zeller's harp playing is very cool. Backed by Jimmy James on guitar, Carl Dutremble on guitar, Marc Deschenes on bass and Bernard Deslauriers on drums, solid opener. On shuffle, Life is Good, Zeller is solid on vocal and harmonica with cool guitar riffs by James and Dutremble and Zeller's harp work is hot. Very nice. Slower blues number, Violins Began to Play, is one of my favorites on the release with some of Zeller's best vocals and nice piano work by Larry Cohen. Featuring tasteful harmonica playing by Paqquale Cerascuolo, a real nice track. The man With The Harmonica is a real nice ballad with harmonica lead. A smooth, movie theme song style track which also features an excellent guitar solo, very nice. Wrapping the release is Lydian Bossa Nova, a short instrumental with Zeller on harmonica and only the minimal of percussion by Deslauriers and Olivier St-Pierre on shakers. Solid closer for Zeller's best release yet. 

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Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Cliff Stevens - Nobody But You - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Nobody But You, from Cliff Stevens and it's smooth radio style rock with solid guitar riffs. Opening with How Long, Cliff Stevens hits the road running with a solid entry checking all the boxes. A cool blues rocker with solid vocals and a low key, understated boogie beat. Title track, Nobody But You, has a cool, swinging pace with a nice walking bass line courtesy of Domenic Romanelli, joined by Eric Suave on keys, and Sam Harrisson on drums. Stevens steps out pretty nicely on guitar on tis one in a Robbin Ford style. Very nice. Little By Little is a smooth paced bluesy ballad with solid vocals, a nice melody, nicely paired backing vocals by Kim Feeney and a flowing guitar solo by Stevens. My favorite track on the release is instrumental, Cry Baby with it's walking bass line, aggressive lead guitar and fat organ solo. Very nice. Come Back is a real nice rocker with a straight up bottom and features Stevens on slide guitar with Harrisson really hanging tight on drums. Another of my favorites. Wrapping the release is poppy shuffle, Truth Don't Lie with great percussion, a snappy rhythm and warm vocals. Stevens gets his country style picking in on this number for a happy closer. 

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Thursday, August 8, 2019

The Togs - Originals - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Originals, by The Togs, a pair of musicians from France. Togs is Peter Callate on lead vocal and guitar and Stag Augagmeur on rhythm guitar. Opening with Migrant's Song, Callate leads off with clean acoustic guitar accompaniment  and his own unique voice. Following a basic folk blues format he and Augagneur really set a clean pace. On Someday, addition of piano adds dimensionality and clever additional guitar fingering shows solid instrumentation. With it's quick pace, Hold Me Tight is one of my favorites on the release. It has solid vocals and clear, almost Jimmy Page like acoustic guitar strumming. Second Chance has a particularly strong melody and composition with emotional vocals by Callate almost bringing to mind one of my favorite contemporary singers, Frank Black. Wrapping the release is Lonely Hearts with a strong acoustic punky rock feel and an interesting electric guitar solo. This is a solid closer for an interesting release. 

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Thursday, August 1, 2019

Brett Spaulding & The Psychic Spies - Livin' To Play - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Livin' To Play, by Brett Spaulding & The Psychic Spies and it solid. Opening with blues based rocker and title track, Livin' To Play, Brett Spaulding on lead vocal and guitar sets a lumbering pace with solid footing. Backed by Chad Holtzman on guitar and organ, Emmet VanEtten on drums, Brent Wright on guitars and backing vocals, and Stephen Fletcher on keys, this is a solid opener. Can't Stop is sure fire radio track with a clean melody and Glenn Frey like bones. The Lucky Ones is one of my favorite tracks on the release with a solid rhythm and cool bass line. Spaulding's lead vocal, paired with backing vocals by Holtzman and Wright give it the perfect balance. Another of my favorite tracks is Everyday with it's chugging, driving, rock feel and obtuse guitar riff. Wrapping the release is Little Differences with it's garage undertone and poppy melody. This is a cool release with a lot of great tunes. 

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Monday, July 22, 2019

Leny's Girl - Walk Outside Again - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Walk Outside Again, from Leny's Girl and it's a cool rocker with blues and country roots. Opening with Pretend, a wide open country rocker with plenty of twists and turns. Featuring Kasey McKenzie on vocal, Beggsy on guitar, Brownie on drums, Cookie on harp and Tom Raw on bass, it's a solid start.  Devil With A Gun is a real cool rock track with suspense and tension via a simple bass line, tight drum riffs, a vicious harp riff and great vocals by McKenzie. Title track, Walk Outside Again has haunting slide work by Beggsy, nicely isolating the vocals on McKenzie on the softer part of this track and giving the track real dynamics when they open up and pour on the heat. Very nice. Miss Robin Hood is a wide open rocker with a driving beat, fat slide work and McKenzie's most powerful vocals on the release. Wrapping the release is Table with a strong dose of the San Francisco psychedelic blues sound. This is a cool wrapper for a solid release.  

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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Canadian National Treasures and Country Music Legends Ian Tyson and Sylvia Tyson to be Inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame; Historic Double-Album Release of "Ian & Sylvia






Canadian National Treasures and Country Music Legends Ian Tyson

and Sylvia Tyson to be Inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame



Celebration Coincides with Historic Double-Album Release of

Ian & Sylvia The Lost Tapes on September 6th,

60 Years After They First Met





TORONTO,  – July 1959 was a pivotal month for the history of folk and country music. It was when Ian Tyson met Sylvia Fricker for the first time, which began a musical journey, both as a dynamic duo and with distinguished solo careers, that would help put Canadian country music on the map globally. In honor of the start of this historic musical collaboration, Stony Plain Records will be releasing Ian & Sylvia The Lost Tapes on September 6th; the day after their much-anticipated inductions as individual songwriters into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, which will be presented on September 5th at Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre, during Country Music Week in Calgary, AB.



“Ian & Sylvia were pioneers of the singer-songwriter movement – a genre firmly established today because of their leadership,” said Vanessa Thomas, Executive Director of the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. “As a performing duo they were superb, and it was apparent through their second album that they wanted to announce their strong individual songwriting skills as well, which continued to drive their authenticity throughout their music careers spanning more than six decades.”



During the ‘60s and ‘70s, as the folk-singing duo Ian & Sylvia, they were among North America’s leading singer-songwriters, achieving commercial and critical success and recording 13 studio albums.  The duo performed their hit songs for U.S. President Lyndon Johnson’s 1964 re-election campaign, at the Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall and Town Hall in NYC; as well as appearances on television’s “Hullabaloo,” the Johnny Cash Show, Steve Allen Show, and Mike Douglas Show, and the BBC.



Their folk standards “Four Strong Winds” – deemed by the CBC to be the “most essential” piece of Canadian music – and “You Were on My Mind” were inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2003 and 2007 respectively.  Ian penned “Four Strong Winds” after an evening with Bob Dylan, and Sylvia is credited with “You Were on My Mind,” making her one of the few female folk artists to write a major song in that genre at the time, which was remade in 1965 by American folk-rock quintet, We Five, to become a worldwide #1 hit single. Both songs, cemented their individual status as hit-making songwriters. 



While Ian & Sylvia’s catalog is filled to the brim with stellar music, the release of Ian & Sylvia The Lost Tapes is culled from newly-discovered concert tapes from the early ‘70s, and never-before-heard versions of country and pop classics, cementing their reputations as performers who pushed the boundaries of folk, blues, country, rhythm and blues, and rock ‘n roll.  Much of their best-known repertoire is superbly represented here including “Four Strong Winds,” “Summer Wages,” “Crazy Arms,” “Four Rode By,” “Little Beggar Man,” “When First Unto This Country” and “Darcy Farrow,” reminding fans of what they were able to do best - blend influences from folk and country on the way to be widely considered two of the eras greatest songwriters and musicians.



“The pivotal role of Ian & Sylvia in music history may be their refusal to be trapped in the patterns of their past as one of the leading acts of the '60s folk era,” notes Canadian music industry journalist Larry LeBlanc.  “Along with the Byrds, Gram Parsons, Bob Dylan, Linda Ronstadt, Waylon Jennings, and Willie Nelson, Ian & Sylvia laid the foundation of Canadian country music and Americana music that evolved as a recognized source of popular culture.”



Ian, who loves the cowboy way of life living on his ranch in Longview, Alberta, performs his own Western influenced repertoire; Sylvia continues to have a fascinating, and still-thriving solo career while performing, writing, and recording with Quartette with Caitlin Hanford, Cindy Church, and Gwen Swick.



For this richly rewarding retrospective complete with liner notes written by Larry LeBlanc, Sylvia and producer Danny Greenspoon picked unreleased performances that Sylvia had discovered while assembling memorabilia for the National Music Centre in Calgary.



On September 5th with the country music industry gathered in Calgary for Country Music Week, Ian Tyson and Sylvia Tyson will receive their individual distinctions in the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame at Studio Bell. The release of Ian & Sylvia The Lost Tapes will be released on September 6th, and available for pre-order here.







The Lost Tapes Track Listing



Disc One – Classics



1.    Keep On The Sunny Side (Ada Blenkhorn / J. Howard Entwisle)

2.    Darcy Farrow (Steve Gillette / Tom Campbell)

3.    Will The Circle Be Unbroken (Ada R. Habershon / Charles H. Gabriel)

4.    When First Unto This Country (Traditional, adapted and arranged by Ian & Sylvia)

5.    Come All You Fair and Tender Ladies (Traditional, adapted and arranged by Ian & Sylvia)

6.    Four Rode By (Ian Tyson)

7.    Nancy Whiskey (Trad.)

8.    Four Strong Winds (Ian Tyson)

9.    Little Beggarman (Traditional, adapted and arranged by Ian & Sylvia)

10. The French Song (Pease / Vincent)

11. Summer Wages (Ian Tyson)

12. Crazy Arms (Ralph Mooney)

13. I’ll Fly Away (Albert E. Brumley)



Disc Two – Previously Unreleased



1.    After The Fire Is Gone (L.E. White)

2.    Heartaches By The Number (Harlan Howard)

3.    Sweet Dreams (Don Gibson)

4.    Come On In My Kitchen (Robert Johnson)

5.    Jimmie’s Texas Blues (Jimmie Rodgers)

6.    How Long (Rick Nelson)

7.    The Last Thing On My Mind (Tom Paxton)

8.    That’s The Way Love Goes (Lefty Frizzell / Sanger D. Shafer)

9.    Crying Time (Buck Owens)

10. Starting All Over Again (Melvin McArthur Hardin / Hubert Timothy McPherson)

11. Together Again (Buck Owens)

12. Silver Threads and Golden Needles (Jack Rhodes/Dick Reynolds)

13. The Goodnight Loving Trail (Utah Phillips)



About Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame

The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame (CSHF) honors and celebrates Canadian songwriters and those who have dedicated their lives to the legacy of music, and works to educate the public about these achievements. National and non-profit, the CSHF is guided by its own board of directors who comprise both Anglophone and Francophone music creators and publishers, as well as representation from the record industry. In December 2011, SOCAN (the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada) acquired the CSHF. The Hall of Fame’s mandate aligns with SOCAN’s objectives as a songwriter and publisher membership-based organization. The CSHF continues to be run as a separate organization. www.cshf.ca



About Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre

Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre (NMC), is much more than a museum. A national catalyst for discovery, innovation and renewal through music, NMC is preserving and celebrating Canada’s music story inside its home at Studio Bell in Calgary’s East Village. With programming that includes on-site and outreach education programs, performances, artist incubation and exhibitions, NMC is inspiring a new generation of music lovers. For more information, please visit studiobell.ca.



About Stony Plain Records

One of the most prestigious record labels in Canadian music, Stony Plain has received three Grammy Award nominations and its artists have also garnered numerous W.C. Handy Blues Award nominations and won several Blues Awards from the Blues Foundation. In Canada, Stony Plain has won several Juno Awards, Canadian Country Music Association Awards, Maple Blues Awards and Western Canada Music Awards. 

Thursday, July 11, 2019

LEEROY STAGGER ANNOUNCES RELEASE OF HIS NEW ALBUM, "STRANGE PATH," ON SEPTEMBER 13th









LEEROY STAGGER ANNOUNCES RELEASE OF HIS NEW 

ALBUM, STRANGE PATH, ON SEPTEMBER 13th



VIDEO FOR 1ST SINGLE, “STRANGE ATTRACTOR,” PREMIERES TODAY



WATCH/SHARE “STRANGE ATTRACTOR” HERE



To say that Canadian musician Leeroy Stagger’s life journey has followed a strange path would be a bit of an understatement. 17 years as a singer-songwriter and 10 years sober, with two kids, a home in Lethbridge, Alberta, and a world-class recording studio to go with it, he’s far removed from the hard-living twenty-something who started on this musical path.



On September 13th, Leeroy Stagger invites us to be a part of his journey with the release of his new album and book, Strange Path, through True North Records. And today marks the release of the video for the glam-rock blissed out first single, “Strange Attractor.” Directed by Brock Davis Mitchell, the video draws inspiration from films like The Favorite and Marie Antoinette, and weaves an experimental narrative with shocking bursts of color. Watch video here



The name Strange Path applies as much to Leeroy’s unexpected route from the British Columbia punk scene to southern-Alberta singer songwriter as it does to the album’s own evolution. Following from 2017’s Love Versus, itself a creative re-emergence after a years-long fog of anxiety and depression, Strange Path is the end result of a triple-album’s worth of scrapped demos, and a spirit-reviving retreat inwards. It’s also Stagger’s most ambitious and philosophical creation yet, a veritable self-help book pulled from a lifetime of struggling towards the light and brimming with the hard-won joy at the heart of his recent renaissance. It’s an album full of sharp hooks and sharper insight, and the first single “Strange Attractor”’ rides that line right to the end. 



“Nothing is permanent when you really stop and think,” says Leeroy. “The home we live in, the car we drive, the children we raise, the art we make and the skin that we’re in. It’s not forever, it’s barely real, and that’s ok to me because I’ve been shown the truth of it all. In seeing that it’s not that big of a deal, this has shown me how beautiful it all is. It’s precious, impermanent and beautiful. “Strange Attractor”’ is about the unseen nature of impermanence and the sacredness of the life we live.”



In making Strange Path, Leeroy surrounded himself with some of the best players in the business, including drummer Pete Thomas (Elvis Costello and the Attractions, Elliot Smith, Los Lobos), longtime collaborator Tyson Maiko, Paul Rigby (Neko Case, Garth Hudson, Jakob Dylan), Ryland Moranz and Michael Ayotte. The album was mixed by five time Grammy winner Ryan Freeland (Ray LaMontagne, Bonnie Raitt, Rodney Crowell) and Brad Barr of The Barr Brothers shared producer’s chair with Leeroy on four of the eleven tracks. 



When it comes out on September 13th, Strange Path will be the 2nd album that Leeroy Stagger has released in 2019. Released on May 17th, Me and the Mountain is a companion piece to Strange Path, an Americana-influenced counterpart to Strange Path’s contemporary sound. Written during a 3-week singer-songwriter residency at the Banff Centre, Me and the Mountain is the album that Leeroy chose not to abandon. 



Leeroy Stagger and his musicians will tour to support Strange Path throughout North America and Internationally; see below for the full tour schedule. Strange Path will be available on Spotify, Apple Music/iTunes and other digital retailers and streaming services on September 13th. For more information, please visit: leeroystagger.com



LEEROY STAGGER | UPCOMING TOUR DATES

July 12 - Calgary, AB - King Eddy (Stampede Show)

July 19 - Fort MacLeod, AB - South Country Fair

Aug 3-5 - Canmore, AB - Canmore Folk Festival

Aug 29 - Mount Stewart, PEI - Trailside Cafe

Aug 30 - Halifax, NS - Halifax Urban Folk Festival

Aug 31 - Montreal, QC - Petit Campus

Sept 1 - Wentworth-Nord, QC - Rickks Room

Sept 5 - Marlboro, NY - The Falcon

Sept 6 - New York, NY - TBC

Sept 7 - Rhinebeck, NY - House Concert

Sept 9 - Woodstock, NY - TBC

Sept 10 - Syracuse, NY - House Concert

Sept 11 - Burnstown, ON - Neat Coffee Shop

Sept 12 - Toronto, ON - The Horseshoe

Sept 13 - Ottawa, ON - The Rainbow

Sept 14 - Lethbridge, AB - Lethbridge College

Oct 11 - Santa Monica, CA - McCabe’s

Oct 12 - Los Angeles, CA - TBC

Oct 15 - San Francisco, CA - Hotel Utah

Oct 16 - Sacramento, CA - Feist Wines

Oct 17 - Portland, OR - White Eagle Saloon

Oct 18 - Vancouver, BC - The Fox Theatre

Oct 19 - Victoria, BC - TBC

Oct 21 - Parksville, BC - Bayside Resort



LEEROY STAGGER - STRANGE PATH 

RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 13th, 2019 (True North Records)

01.  Mother

02.  Deeper Well

03.  Breaking News 

04.  Strange Attractor

05.  Nobody Alive Gets Out Of Here

06.  Jesus And Buddha

07.  These Things

08.  Hey Hey! (For Gord)

09. Leonard Cohen is Dead

10.  Get Ourselves To Love

11.  The Light

Holly Hyatt - Wild Heart - New Release review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Wild Heart, from Holly Hyatt and it's a solid R&B release. Opening with Wild Heart, a smooth hi stepper with a great melody and inviting lead vocal by Hyatt. Backed by Brandon Smith on keys, Clinton Swanson on horns, Jon Burden on guitars, Billy Mendoza on backing vocals and Steve Wilson on drums, this is a super opener. Laying down a funky groove on bass, Hyatt not only writes all of her own material but sings lead (and backing vocals) on most of her tracks. Very nice. One of my favorite tracks on the release is soul track, Gravity with it's excellent bass line and lush vocals by Hyatt. This track stands head and shoulders above the balance of the release for me but it just hits a sweet spot. Excellent. Rainbows has a more contemporary pop feel with a strong melody and acoustic guitar and key backing over a less prominent bass line. Wrapping the release is With You Now, another more straight forward radio track a memorable melody and flowing electric piano and backing vocals carrying Hyatt's strong lead vocals. This is really a super release with rich vocal lead throughout. 

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Friday, July 5, 2019

Auburn - Game Of Faith - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Game of Faith, from Auburn and it's quite interesting. Opening with Game of Faith, a cool jazzy pop track with really strong vocals by Liz Lenten and clean, stylized guitar work by Thomm Jutz really make this one of my favorites on the release. Backed by Mark Fain on bass, Lynn Williams on drums and Britt Savage on backing vocals, a real nice opener. Lightly salted funky track, I Don't Love Him has a great feel and just the right amount of lead guitar. A purposeful melody and lush chords make this track an outstanding radio prospect. I really like the delicate balance between Lenten's almost fragile vocal  and the saturated tone of the electric guitar on It's Not Love. Very interesting contrast. Another track that keeps me listening is Spoke In The Wheel and Lenten's almost Toya Wilson like vocal delivery, against the glistening chords of Jutz. Wrapping the release is sensitive ballad, His Arms and Lenten's vocals balanced lightly on the acoustic guitar work of Jutz. I wouldn't say this is a traditional blues release by any means, but it is a really interesting release.

Thanks



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