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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!


Please email me at Info@Bmansbluesreport.com
Showing posts with label Southern Hospitality. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Southern Hospitality. Show all posts

Monday, February 3, 2014

Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise #22 - Stilladog Rides Again



This was my fifth Blues Cruise and this marks the third review of the LRBC I’ve done for Bman’s Blues Report.  I’m not sure if it’s because I’ve become a well-seasoned cruiser by now, or if it’s because I had some close friends join me on this cruise, or if the music was any better, or if the islands were more friendly, but this was the best Blues Cruise yet for me!

If you haven’t heard me say it before, I’ll start off with these words of wisdom.  A Blues Cruise vacation is exactly what you make it. You don’t even have to be a fan of blues music to have the time of your life, but it helps!  You can listen to as much music as you want starting as early as 10:30AM and going non-stop somewhere on the ship until 6:00AM.  One night I wandered into the Crows Nest at 5:00AM and listened to JP Soars jam until 5:30AM when they finally called it a night… except for one thing, it was already 6:30AM because we had crossed from the Eastern time zone to the Atlantic time zone at 2 o’clock.

So what I’m saying is you can’t possibly see it all. I know I missed some epic jams but I also saw some great stuff and came away with a new appreciation for several artists (as I always do).  

As all cruises do, it started out with a Sail Away Party on the pool deck. This one was hosted by Curtis Salgado.  Curtis has fought off some very serious health problems including cancer over the past 7 or 8 years yet his voice never sounded better.   I think through the course of the week he brought out his harp and jammed with just about everyone too.

Super Chikan
Next up was one of my –any many other’s–  favorites, Super Chikan.  My friends who were virgin cruisers enjoyed Super Chikan immensely.  From his custom “chiktar” made from a ceiling fan motor to his famous rooster crow, to ending every song with his catch phrase “Somebody shoot that thing!”  He put smiles on all the faces. I knew what to expect and I must say Super Chikan was in excellent form.  His sets are always great fun.  

The first morning, I attended the Returnee Party.  I walked to the venue with Scrap Iron, former manager for Little Milton and co-MC of the Returnee Party (along with Big Llou from BB King’s Bluesville on Sirius Radio).  I asked Scrap who we were going to see figuring if he’s introducing the act he knows who it is. All Scrap said was “They told me it was going to be something special. But they wouldn’t say who it is.”

When Scrap Iron finally did the introduction he told the audience just what he had told me privately.  And he brought on the All-Girls  All-Star Blues Band!  They really set the bar high right off the bat!  This band consisted of triple guitars, Debbie Davies, Ana Popovic, and Samantha Fish!  On keys was Eden Brent.  On bass was Danielle Schnebelen from Trampled Under Foot.  And on vocals in addition to the singing talents of those already mentioned there was Sista Monica Parker, Tasha Taylor, and the great Denise LaSalle.  On drums was the consummate professional, Tony Braunagel  (lucky dude!).  The highlights of this set for me were a) anything sung by Denise LaSalle, and b) the cover of ZZ Top’s “Tush” sung by Eden Brent.  Free drinks aside, this was a party you didn’t want to miss!   
All Girls All-Star Blues Band

While the Returnee Party was taking place, the Virgins had a party of their own on the pool deck with the Selwyn Birchwood Band. Normally I don’t mention this party because I haven’t been a virgin cruiser since the inception of Bman’s Blues Report. But my virgin friends who attended were very impressed with IBC Award Winner Selwyn Birchwood, who himself was a virgin cruiser.

Soon after, this whole cruise just melted into one big party for me.  I will only write about the things that really made an impression on me (there are many) and will not attempt to go in chronological order.  Quite frankly, I believe my brain cells that kept track of time were lost somewhere in the Caribbean, most likely during Lil’ Eds set at Margaritaville on Grand Turk.  But some of these sets were so memorable I’ll never forget them.

One of the most impressive performers on this cruise was Ana Popovic and her new big band,  Mo’ Better Love.   After growing up in Serbia, she now calls Memphis home and there is a definite Memphis sound to this band.  I’ve seen Ana probably 4 or 5 times over the years beginning back in 2006.  Back then, she struggled with English, both speaking and singing. In those days I remember saying “this girl can really play but I wish she’d just keep her mouth shut.”  We’ll let me tell you with each passing year and chance to see her she’s gotten better both on guitar and in English.  Honestly, the metamorphosis that has occurred for her has been amazing to watch.  She is now a master on guitar and speaks very clearly and sings beautifully in English.   When I got a chance to talk to her I told her I know how hard she has worked on both and how much it is appreciated by her fans.  I saw her play at least twice on this cruise in addition to the aforementioned Returnee Party and the band was a joy to see each time. 
Ana Popovic

The Zydeco band for this cruise –every cruise has one– was Corey Ledet and His Zydeco Band. This band featured Lil Buck Sinegal on guitar although he only got limited chances to solo.  They were very popular with cruisers.  They did zydeco versions of songs by as diverse artists as Bob Marley, Guns & Roses, and Cheap Trick, in addition to some fine material of their own.

Lil Ed  (photo courtesy of Michael Udell)
I wore my fez for the Lil’ Ed and the Blues Imperials sets of which I saw 3.  Ed was without a doubt one of the most popular artists. The “Ed Heads” were out in full force for all of them, particularly for his land event at Margaritaville on Grand Turk where you could spot a fez here and there on people in the pool while the Blues Imperials jammed on.  <pic of Lil Ed>

In addition to playing numerous sets Lil Ed and the Blues Imperials were the house band for two showings of the Joe Plummer play, “Nothing But The Blues.”  Just WOW!  This play is set at Theresa’s Lounge in Chicago in the early 1980s.  It’s the story of a small blues club in a basement in Chicago that culminates in what we now know as the Theresa Needham Award given annually at the Chicago Blues Festival for outstanding service to the blues community .  To find out more about the history of the real life Theresa’s Lounge, click here:  http://www.chicagobarproject.com/Memoriam/Theresa's/Theresa's.htm

Southern Hospitality (Victor Wainwright, JP Soars, Damon Fowler) were another band who absolutely wowed many cruisers.  I guess many of them were unaware of this band but I not only was familiar with SoHo (as they prefer to be called now to eliminate any confusion between them and Royal Southern Brotherhood) but also each of the guys as solo artists.  In addition to their own smokin’ sets,  Wainwright was hugely popular as Piano Bar host where the jams last until the sun comes up.  He was often accompanied by JP Soars who was also a regular in the Crow’s Nest for late night jams. 

Kenny Wayne Shepherd was a “headliner” of sorts mainly due to his popularity.  His sets continue to be professionally done but with little but manufactured passion for what he’s doing.  However, in a pool deck jam hosted by Trampled Under Foot,  Kenny and TUF guitarist, Nick Schnebelen  engaged in a legendary  jam.  It was the first time I saw Kenny Wayne really seem to have fun playing guitar since I first saw him in 2002 at the Chesapeake Blues Fest.  This jam was the talk of the cruise.

Marquise Knox and Selwyn Birchwood each played a land gig on the island of Anguilla.  They sounded good.  But I cannot really say how good because the venue was totally inadequate for viewing beyond a few dozen people and the sound system was not the greatest either.  This trip billed as The Ultimate Beach Party and sometimes known as The Chilla in Anguilla came up far short of expectations although a day on the beach drinking beer and listening to blues is always fun.

Tab Benoit was great.  His sets were wonderful. And he practically commandeered the Crows Nest jams to the point that we started calling it Tab’s Nest!  He could be found up there jamming almost every night and was frequently spotted playing drums while other people –often JP Soars or Selwyn Birchwood – took over guitar duty.   He also hosted a Bingo game to raise money for the Voice of the Wetlands which was hilarious.  I particularly liked his story of playing golf with Willie Nelson!

I did not get to see but a tiny bit of Sugar Ray & The Bluetones but I did hear their guitarist Monster Mike Welch a few times and he is another artist who has matured into a really top notch musician.

Tommy Castro, who is on every cruise, had a CD release party for his new album The Devil You Know which was very entertaining and his jams with Debbie Davies and Chris Cain were the highlights.

Chris Cain was again the supreme guitarist on the ship.  He was often seen playing with Debbie Davies. And they were part of the Legendary R&B Revue along with The Painkillers.  I guess those West Coast blues folks stick together.  His set in the Queens Lounge (called Theresa’s Lounge for this cruise) was great. 
  And few besides Theodis Ealey were willing to cut heads with him when it was his turn to host the jam.  

One of the most entertaining sets I’ve ever seen anywhere was turned in by what was billed as the Down Home Blues Extravaganza.  It featured the Mel Waiters band with Theodis Ealey on guitar, Latimore on keys, and blues hall of famer, Denise LaSalle.  The highlight of this set was the 15 minute version of Snap, Crackle, and Pop by Denise.  She had me practically rolling on the deck laughing as she described how to “make that coochie snap, crackle and pop” in song while poking fun at Theodis, Bobby Rush, and Clarence Carter.   Theodis Ealey was a guitarist I gained much new respect for on this cruise.  It was almost like I discovered him for the first time.


Finally, I went to a guitar summit of sorts hosted by Debbie Davies where Ana Popovic, Marquise Knox, Monster Mike Welch, Chris Cain, John Hammond, and Nick Schnebelen all talked about how they got started and how their styles developed.  It was very telling to hear how many of them started listening to their parents records at a young age. John Hammond whose father’s work in recording was legendary was to be expected.  But Ana Popovic said that all her father had in the house in the former  Yugoslavia was blues, soul and r&b records from America.  And Chris Cain saying his dad drove a truck yet they had the best stereo system around and how all his dad’s blues and soul records ended up in his room.  Or how Cain’s dad took him to see Ray Charles, Charles Brown, and BB King concerts as a youngster.   Very enlightening. 
Guitar Summit

As usual, I’ve left some people out.  Never got to see Otis Clay although I did get to speak briefly with him.  Same for Sista Monica who remembered a set she did with Elvin Bishop which I attended back in 2003. Or the Neal Brothers (Frederick & Darnell) who I found in the Piano Bar late one night/early one morning.   Or Eric Bibb who I saw do 2 songs on the way to someplace else.  Or The James Hunter Six who my friend who goes by the name Texasbluzer said was phenomenal.  As I said, you just can’t see it all.

Bottom line here folks is that if you are a blues fan and can afford to get away for a week in the Caribbean sun, the Legendary Blues Cruise is definitely the way to go.  And if you’re not a blues fan, one week on this ship and you will be!  



Thanks Dog!!  Bman
 
“Like” Bman’s Facebook page. I use Facebook to spread the word about my blog (Now with translation in over 50 languages). I will not hit you with 50 posts a day. I will not relay senseless nonsense. I use it only to draw attention to some of the key posts on my blog each day. In this way I can get out the word on new talent, venues and blues happenings! - click Here Get Facebook support for your favorite band or venue - click HERE

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Cash Box Kings, Southern Hospitality Win Blues Blast Music Awards!



blindpigrecords.com
THE CASH BOX KINGS, SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY WIN BLUES BLAST MUSIC AWARDS!
The Cash Box Kings and Southern Hospitality both won 2013 Blues Blast Music Awards for their Blind Pig albums at ceremonies held at Buddy Guy's Legends club in Chicago on October 31st.
The Cash Box Kings' Black Toppin' was named the best "Traditional Blues Album" and the debut release from Southern Hospitality, Easy Livin', was the winner of the "Best New Artist Debut" award.                                               
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/Joe-Legends.jpg

 Joe Nosek(Photo: Jim Netter)
Before being announced winners of the Blues Blast Music Award, The Cash Box Kings performed two songs for the crowd at Legends, skillfully displaying their uncanny ability to deliver authentic, back-in-the-day Chicago blues. Featuring the harp work of Joe Nosek, the outstanding vocals of Oscar Wilson and the sterling guitar playing of Joel Paterson, they put on one of the best performances of the evening.
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/Oscar-with-BBM-award.jpg
Oscar accepting the BBM award from Cookie Taylor (Photo: Marilyn Stringer)
Nosek called the award "a real honor" and said, "a great thanks goes out to all our fans, friends, and family for the support they've given us.  We also really want to thank everyone at Blind Pig for having faith to put out a record like this."  Wilson added, "Blues Blast magazine and all the people associated with this project, I thank you so much.  Yes, fans, thank you guys and gals most of all!"
Living Blues magazine proclaimed their release, "a great record by one of the best blues bands in the land," while No Depression added, "The ghosts of Muddy Waters, Hubert Sumlin, Pinetop Perkins and Little Walter must be smiling.  Black Toppin' might be the best blues album you'll hear this year."
Southern Hospitality, who were unable to perform at the awards show because they were on tour in Norway, are turning heads far and wide with their incredible live shows.  Fronted by Damon Fowler on lap steel guitar, Victor Wainwright on piano, and JP Soars on guitar, the group has been taking the roots music world by storm, with critics comparing them to the Allman Brothers, Little Feat, and Dr. John. Easy Livin' was produced by Tab Benoit, who said, "Damon, Victor and JP are the future of roots music." http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/SouthernHospitalityThumb.jpg 

Upon hearing about the award, Soars admitted he was "surprised but very grateful."  Wainwright added, "I'm really humbled and honored.  Winning the Best New Artist Debut is really exciting and I'm very thankful for the tremendous support from our fans, friends and family!"  And Fowler succinctly summed up the group's reaction with, "Yea, man!!!"
Hittin' the Note magazine called the album "a dozen potent shots of pure Southern pleasure, reminiscent of the best days of Southern rock."  Vintage Guitar added, "A rock solid release. At the level on which these guys operate, genre is irrelevant. They're simply good players playing at the top their game."
To watch the video of the band performing a track from the album, "Kind Lies & Whiskey," please click HERE.
The Blues Blast Music Awards are voted on by fans from around the world who subscribe to the free weekly newsletter.
To order "Black Toppin'" or "Easy Livin'" please visit our website.  To get these and other fine Blind Pig releases for only $10 as part of our special 5 CDs for $50 offer, please click HERE.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

The Cash Box Kings, Southern Hospitality Award Winners!

blindpigrecords.com
THE CASH BOX KINGS, SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY WIN BLUES BLAST MUSIC AWARDS!
The Cash Box Kings and Southern Hospitality both won 2013 Blues Blast Music Awards for their Blind Pig albums at ceremonies held at Buddy Guy's Legends club in Chicago on October 31st.
The Cash Box Kings' Black Toppin' was named the best "Traditional Blues Album" and the debut release from Southern Hospitality, Easy Livin', was the winner of the "Best New Artist Debut" award.                                               
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/Joe-Legends.jpg

 Joe Nosek(Photo: Jim Netter)
Before being announced winners of the Blues Blast Music Award, The Cash Box Kings performed two songs for the crowd at Legends, skillfully displaying their uncanny ability to deliver authentic, back-in-the-day Chicago blues. Featuring the harp work of Joe Nosek, the outstanding vocals of Oscar Wilson and the sterling guitar playing of Joel Paterson, they put on one of the best performances of the evening.
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/Oscar-with-BBM-award.jpg
Oscar accepting the BBM award from Cookie Taylor (Photo: Marilyn Stringer)
Nosek called the award "a real honor" and said, "a great thanks goes out to all our fans, friends, and family for the support they've given us.  We also really want to thank everyone at Blind Pig for having faith to put out a record like this."  Wilson added, "Blues Blast magazine and all the people associated with this project, I thank you so much.  Yes, fans, thank you guys and gals most of all!"
Living Blues magazine proclaimed their release, "a great record by one of the best blues bands in the land," while No Depression added, "The ghosts of Muddy Waters, Hubert Sumlin, Pinetop Perkins and Little Walter must be smiling.  Black Toppin' might be the best blues album you'll hear this year."
Southern Hospitality, who were unable to perform at the awards show because they were on tour in Norway, are turning heads far and wide with their incredible live shows.  Fronted by Damon Fowler on lap steel guitar, Victor Wainwright on piano, and JP Soars on guitar, the group has been taking the roots music world by storm, with critics comparing them to the Allman Brothers, Little Feat, and Dr. John. Easy Livin' was produced by Tab Benoit, who said, "Damon, Victor and JP are the future of roots music." http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/SouthernHospitalityThumb.jpg 

Upon hearing about the award, Soars admitted he was "surprised but very grateful."  Wainwright added, "I'm really humbled and honored.  Winning the Best New Artist Debut is really exciting and I'm very thankful for the tremendous support from our fans, friends and family!"  And Fowler succinctly summed up the group's reaction with, "Yea, man!!!"
Hittin' the Note magazine called the album "a dozen potent shots of pure Southern pleasure, reminiscent of the best days of Southern rock."  Vintage Guitar added, "A rock solid release. At the level on which these guys operate, genre is irrelevant. They're simply good players playing at the top their game."
To watch the video of the band performing a track from the album, "Kind Lies & Whiskey," please click HERE.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Southern Hospitality - new video!



blindpigrecords.com

NEW SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY VIDEO
"Kind Lies & Whiskey"
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/Damon-Kind-Lies-Web.jpg
"Well, I've got scars,
from cars, b
ars and women.
And I feel, Lord,
I've earned them all."

Great lyrics, from a great song, from a great band.  The song, "Kind Lies & Whiskey," exemplifies the compelling mix of Southern soul, rootsy rock, and swampy blues of Southern Hospitality that has critics comparing the group to the Allman Brothers, Little Feat, Marshall Tucker, Dr. John, and Willie Nelson.

Led by a trio of young virtuosos - Damon Fowler (composer of "Kind Lies") on lap steel, JP Soars on guitar, and Victor Wainwright on keyboards - Southern Hospitality is taking the Americana and roots music world by storm with their "neo-postmodern Southern rock" with echoes of Muscle Shoals and Macon.

Elmore magazine said of the tune, "Tracks like Fowler's 'Kind Lies & Whiskey' breathe new life into southern rock 40-plus years on."  No Depression added, "Fowler steps up with the laconic rocker 'Kind Lies & Whiskey,' his smoky vocal a blend of Tab Benoit and Paul Thorn."  To watch the video of "Kind Lies & Whiskey," please click HERE.
Southern Hospitality's debut album, Easy Livin,' was produced by Tab Benoit, who said, "Damon, Victor, and JP are the future of roots music." 
For more info and samples from the release, or to see more videos of Southern Hospitality, please click HERE.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Vote for the Blues Blast Music Awards!

blindpigrecords.com
 BLUES BLAST MUSIC AWARD VOTING ENDS TOMORROW
Blues fans can vote for their favorites
Tomorrow, Saturday, August 31st, is your last chance to vote for the 2013 Blues Blast Music Awards.  Voting is open to anyone who is a Blues Blast magazine subscriber. Subscriptions are FREE and an automatic part of the voting process on the website. To see the list of nominees and to hear songs by the artists nominated, please click HERE.   To cast your ballot, please click here: VOTE.
Blind Pig artists are well represented on the ballot:
THE CASH BOX KINGS
- Blues Band of the Year
- Traditional Blues Album  (Black Toppin')The Cash Box Kings have been extolled by no less an authority than Charlie Musselwhite for their uncanny ability to faithfully capture the essence of post-war 1950's Chicago and Memphis blues while adding their own bravado, energy, and freshness to the mix.  In a review of their latest release,  Black Toppin', Living Blues magazine said, "Straight from the golden era of the blues comes the new album from Chicago's Cash Box Kings, featuring an impressive line-up of A-list blues players. A great record by one of the best blues bands in the land, Black Toppin' is a dancing and listening pleasure." 

SENA EHRHARDT
- Sean Costello Rising Star
- Song of the Year ("Dreamin' or Dyin'")
The buzz and the critical acclaim for this young singer has been steadily growing since the release of her debut album Leave the Light On, which won the 2012 Blues Blast Music Award for "New Artist Debut Release."
  Reviewing her latest release, All In, Living Blues said, "Sena Ehrhardt's voice cannot get any more powerful, range-defying, and throwback cool. Truly one of the most dynamic young voices any genre has seen in a long time."  "Dreamin' or Dyin,'" a track from the new release, is nominated for "Song of the Year."  For a limited time, a free download of the track is available HERETo see a video of Sena and her dad (and her band's guitarist) performing an acoustic version of the song, please lick HERE

SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY

- Blues Band of the Year
- New Artist Debut Release  (Easy Livin')
- Sean Costello Rising Star (Victor Wainwright)Led by a trio of young virtuosos, (Damon Fowler on lap steel, JP Soars on guitar, and Victor Wainwright on keyboards), Southern Hospitality has crafted a highly compelling mix of Southern soul, rootsy rock, and swampy blues with echoes of Muscle Shoals and Macon.  Their debut release, Easy Livin,' was produced by Tab Benoit, who said, "Damon, Victor, and JP are the future of roots music."  At the Blues Music Awards in May, Victor Wainwright was named the winner of the prestigious "Pinetop Perkins Piano Player Award."
PETER KARP & SUE FOLEY
- Song of the Year ("Analyze'n Blues")The "Song of the Year" nominee, "Analyze'n Blues," is a track from Beyond the Crossroads, the latest collaboration between these two noted singer-songwriter guitarists.  For a limited time, you can get a free download of the song (and other new Blind Pig tracks) by clicking HERELiving Blues said of the album, "As all of the songs demonstrate, great songwriting is even better with great musicianship..an inventive and buoyant collection of quality songs with great blues feeling."  To watch a new video of Peter and Sue performing "Analyze 'n Blues," please click HERE.
DEANNA BOGART
- Female Blues ArtistRecognized for her dazzling keyboards, soulful saxophone, smoky vocals and cut-above songwriting, Deanna Bogart is also perennially popular for engaging her audience with her firecracker stage performances.  The multi-award-winning  musician combines the best of boogie-woogie, contemporary blues, country and jazz into a splendid blend she calls "blusion."  Critics loved Deanna's latest release, Pianoland, which spotlights her considerable keyboard skills. Blurt said,"Once in a rare while an album comes along that just captures you with its beauty, creativity and magic. Pianoland is a masterpiece of blues healing. At times listening to this album is like listening to Coltrane or Monk for the first time."
JOHN NÉMETH
- Male Blues ArtistSince bursting onto the scene in 2007, John Németh has wowed critics and audiences alike with his riveting vocals and harmonica prowess.  Winner of the 2010 "Most Outstanding Blues Singer" Living Blues Award, Németh has established a reputation as a singer and entertainer of the highest order, racking up five Blues Music Award nominations this year.  His latest Blind Pig release, Name The Day!, is another timeless slice of American music.  Drawing on the classic blues, soul, and R&B influences that inform his stunning vocal style, John's spine-tingling vocals echo the toughness of James Brown and the tenderness of Solomon Burke.  
Blues Blast Music Award winners will be announced at ceremonies held at Buddy Guy's Legends in Chicago on October 31, 2013.
For more information visit www.blindpigrecords.com.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

New Southern Hospitality video!

blindpigrecords.com
NEW SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY VIDEO!
"Don't Feel Like Going There Today"

http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/SoHo-Band-Thumb.jpg  Southern Hospitality, the all-star roots-blues/Americana ensemble that's creating a musical stir in the Deep South and beyond, has just released a video of a song from their new Blind Pig album, Easy Livin.'  The group is fronted by guitar and lap steel whiz Damon Fowler, another guitar ace from Florida, JP Soars, and pianoman extraordinaire Victor Wainwright from Memphis, and backed by a sterling rhythm section of Chris Peet on drums and Chuck Riley on bass.

The video features a live performance of  "Don't Feel Like Going There Today," where the band splashes a tasty helping of sweet Southern soul sauce over the inviting reggae-inflected tune written and sung by Fowler.  No Depression described the song as a "Marley lope overlaid with some twisted, wiggly guitar work by Soars and Fowler, backed by some itchy organ from Wainwright."
To watch the video, please click HERE.
Easy Livin', which was produced in Louisiana by blues star Tab Benoit, debuted in the Top Ten on the Billboard blues sales chart.  Fans and critics alike are responding enthusiastically to SoHo's distinctive mix of Southern soul, rootsy rock and swampy blues.  Twangville called the CD a "swampy gumbo recipe reminiscent of classic southern rockers Little Feat (during the Lowell George years) with a selection ranging from soul-inflected blues, to country, to jazz, to straight-ahead rock."  Barrehouse Blues added, "The musicianship throughout is superb...a stunning tribute to the styles of music that make American music so great."

Monday, March 18, 2013

Blind Pig Records artist: Southern Hospitality - Easy Livin' - New Release Review

I just received the new release, Easy Livin' by Southern Hospitality and it's quite enjoyable. This band features three well known blues artists, Damon Fowler, JP Soars and Vistor Wainwright as well as bassist Chuck Riley and drummer Chris Peet. This release has a number of flavors of music due to the diverse but related styles of each artist. Opening with Southern Livin', a funky little easy going pop blues, the band sets a baseline for music to come. This is a well written track with some of the commercial blood of Wet Willie or Little Feat, with a soul twist, but with life of it's own. Long Way Home, a Soars penned track has a bit more rock to it and features a short instrumental break featuring each of the players giving a taste of what is to come. Kind Lies & Whiskey is a really cool Fowler penned swing almost country blues. I really like this track with it's laid back attack. Wainwright plays a nice piano solo on this track. On another Soars penned track, Mile After Mile, the men lay down a track that really sounds like it's off of a Bob Wills or Asleep At The Wheel release and it is really quite cool. Fowler plays some lap steel that actually approaches Hawaiian style which is interesting as well. Wainwright's Certified Lover is a really hot soul style track. The vocals alone on this track are enough to carry the release but with musicians like these, you know there are instrumental features. Wainwright plays a a very warm supportive organ and hot piano parts and Fowler and Soars each play hot guitar riffs. Excellent track! On Willie Bobo's Fried Neck Bones and Home Fries, the track opens with Spanish style lead work which leads into a Latin flavored instrumental showcase featuring quite a bit of guitar over light percussion. This is another really sweet track! Wainwright's Shoestring Budget is a jump style blues track and really gets the place hopping. Wainwright plays boogie on the piano leaving the floor open for some really tasty guitar work by both players. This is another track not to be missed. Fowler penned Don't Feel Like Going There Today has a reggae beat but a real bluesy sound. This may be my favorite track on the release. It has just the right touch of blues, rhythm and guitar with super vocals. Come Back Home, written by Soars is a rock and roller and Wainwright gets the JLL pounding going to drive the track. Fowler takes a distinctive steel guitar solo and then opens the floor for Wainwright and Soars to rip away. Hot dawg! Another Fowler penned track, Powered For The Mountain, has a strong rock/blues basis with a swampy spiritual overtone. This is another really nice track with rippin' guitar work. This would be the powerhouse Led Zeppelin style track off of the release.... and I mean powerhouse! A Martino Laying Jr. track, Don't Boogie Woogie could easily be out of Joe Cockers early 70's repertoire. This is a cool track with a lot rockin' jamming between Wainwright, Soars and Fowler. Closing the release is Fowler's Sky Is What I Breathe, a ballad having the qualities of the best of the pre alt country writers. Very nice. (Think "Wild Horses")

 This is an unusually good release and one that everyone should checkout. There is literally something for everyone.

 “Like” Bman’s Facebook page. I use Facebook to spread the word about my blog (Now with translation in over 50 languages). I will not hit you with 50 posts a day. I will not relay senseless nonsense. I use it only to draw attention to some of the key posts on my blog each day. In this way I can get out the word on new talent, venues and blues happenings! - click Here Get Facebook support for your favorite band or venue - click HERE

 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

New videos from Sena Ehrhardt, Southern Hospitality

blindpigrecords.com
NEW VIDEOS FROM SENA EHRHARDT AND SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY
Singer Sena Ehrhardt and blues-based Americana group Southern Hospitality have released new videos in conjunction with the March 12th release of their new albums.
Sena's video is "Buried Alive," the lead track from her new album entitled All InTo watch the video, click HERE.
Ehrhardt is one of the freshest and most dynamic young voices on the blues scene today.  Roots Music Report just said, "Few musical kicks rate with listening to talent on the rise and it appears that Ms. Ehrhardt is taking two stairs at a time on her way to joining the contemporary blues elite." 
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/SenaEmail.jpg
For more info on All In, please click here.  
http://mailman.305spin.com/users/blindpigrecords/images/SoHo2.jpg
The video from Southern Hospitality features the song "Southern Livin'" (which some critics find reminiscent of Little Feat), live performance footage and short interview clips.  To watch the video, please click HERE.
The track is from Easy Livin,' the band's new CD produced by Tab Benoit that spotlight's their fresh mix of Southern soul, rootsy rock, and swampy blues.  Richard Ludmerer of BluesWax said, "the band is far and above any I have heard lately." 
For more info on Easy Livin' click here.
Publicity: Debra Regur   pigpress@blindpigrecords.com   415-550-6484
Radio: Peter Robinson   radio@blindpigrecords.com    773-772-0043
For more information visit www.blindpigrecords.com.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Blind Pig Signs Southern Hospitality!



blindpigrecords.com
BLIND PIG SIGNS SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY
The South has long been known for its hospitality and down home music.   Recently the region has seen the emergence of a musical group of young musicians who are masters of their craft and embody the soul and spirit of Dixie. Or as Blues Revue said, "There's a new entity in the blues world, a diverse, powerful group with enormous potential."
The Band creating all the buzz, called Southern Hospitality, is comprised of lap steel guitar master Damon Fowler, guitarist extraordinaire JP Soars, and keyboard wizard Victor Wainwright.
Blind Pig Records is proud to announce the signing of Southern Hospitality, which is about to record what promises to be one of the most exciting CDs in 2013.   The album will be produced by Tab Benoit, winner of three Blues Music Awards this year, including the prestigious "B.B. King Entertainer of the Year." 
Said Tab, "I'm looking forward to working with Southern Hospitality because Damon, Victor, and JP are the future of roots music."   Recording is set to begin during Thanksgiving week at the Whiskey Bayou Studio in Houma, Louisiana.
The three artists are musician's musicians, each bringing a unique style and fresh translation of the great Southern soul, blues, and rock music that came before them. Together, their mutual chemistry, high energy and skill sets create a cohesive vision, with echoes of Muscle Shoals and Macon, that organically flows together into an entirely original and dynamic form of Americana, Southern soul roots music with a modern sensibility.
Damon Fowler is a master of the six string, slide guitar, lap steel and Dobro who's been compared to Johnny Winter and Jeff Beck, while his slide guitar has a hint of the late Duane Allman.  JP Soars and his band won the Blues Foundation's International Blues Challenge in 2009 and he won the Albert King award as the best guitarist in the competition.  A singer/songwriter and guitarist best known for his distinctive gypsy-swing jazz playing with plenty of rock potency, he was nominated this year for a Blues Music Award as the best "Contemporary Blues Male Artist."  Memphis-based Victor Wainwright is known for his high-octane boogie piano, big soul sounds, powerhouse blues, and roots rock 'n' roll. Victor was nominated this year for the "Pinetop Perkins Piano Player" Blues Music Award.
The Band originated when Fowler, Soars and Wainwright, who were performing with their respective bands at a festival in Florida in July of 2011, decided on an impromptu jam together at a post festival party.  After witnessing the performance, the South Florida Blues Society approached the trio about playing for the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Pre-Cruise Party.
Fowler had already been thinking about doing a project with other musicians and contacted his pal JP Soars.  Like Fowler, Soars lives in Florida and traces his family roots back to Arkansas. "I thought it was great idea as soon as Damon called," Soars said from his home in Boca Raton. "I had jammed with him a few times on stage and was totally excited because there was a natural chemistry that seems to happen whenever we play together."
The two guitar-slingers with the singular singing voices immediately decided they wanted pianist-frontman Wainwright to round out their aggregation.  Soars added, "I had played with Wainwright before, as well, and he has a lot of soul, and we just feed off each other."
Dubbing themselves Southern Hospitality, the three musicians added bassist Chuck Riley from Fowler's band and Soars' drummer Chris Peet to the lineup and made their official debut opening for Buddy Guy in August 2011 at the Heritage Music Blues Fest in Wheeling, West Virginia.
Each frontman sang a couple tunes and the Band jammed them to a thunderous conclusion.   Fowler said, "It was cool to have two guitars and piano, it really added to the overall texture."  By the time the performance ended the crowd exploded with cheers and applause."
"We were all ecstatic about the reaction," Soars said. "I knew it would be good but not that good. The response was overwhelming. Walking around, people kept coming up and telling us how great it was. It felt good." "It was a super magical experience and excellent response right from the first number," Wainwright said. "That was something I've only experienced a few times after many years of playing. The reaction was amazing."
BluesWax said of the show, "Southern Hospitality, which after a single gig has significant players in the blues world taking notice.  Fowler, Wainwright and Soars share much love for the songs of the South. The hot jazz and funk of New Orleans, classic country, gospel, soul, and blues that became rock 'n' roll in Memphis and went global by way of a trucker named Elvis."
Since then Southern Hospitality has performed at a handful of select dates and been rehearsing for the recording sessions.  Fowler hopes to do something like the Traveling Wilburys, where each member brings his owns songs to the table, and then everybody works on them together. "We are representing the South," he said of the project. "We wanted to put together a package of where we're from that represents the music we grew up listening to and that we're making our own today."
Publicity: Debra Regur   pigpress@blindpigrecords.com   415-550-6484
Radio: Peter Robinson  
radio@blindpigrecords.com   773-772-0043
Booking: Piedmont Talent  info@piedmonttalent.com   704-399-2210