Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Luke Metzler - Fairport, NY



www.lukemetzlermusic.com

Luke Metzler releases album: “Portrait of the Young Man as an Artist”



Rochester, N.Y. – ​Luke Metzler is a breath of fresh pop music with catchy and captivating songwriting front and center on his debut album, Portrait of the Young Man as an Artist, and a deft melding of styles across every track.  The album includes the recently released singles Disco Therapy, Something and Home.

Portrait’s tracks range from the contemporary funk throwbacks, Disco Therapy and Power, to the arrow­-straight-­to­ the-­heart pop musings of Home, Something and Set It Free. The hard­ driving I Don’t Want to See You Cry channels The Black Keys while layers of uplifting vocals inform the storytelling in Reach and 12 Hours in Oxford. Strings resonate with poignancy in Phoenix, and Shake (Just a Little Bit) attacks with full force as a grimy dance number. A Pretty Good Year is a full-­throated, bar-­waltzing nod to Metzler’s Irish heritage, and the album closes with In the Springtime (Hannah’s Song), an emotional tribute to Luke’s late sister.

Triumphant vocals and memorable hooks abound in this debut effort, highlighting Metzler’s keen melding of the personal and the profound. It’s all deftly wrapped in an amalgam of styles with a unified pop sound.

BACKGROUND: Luke’s singing career began in elementary school talent shows back in Minnesota, singing the likes of The Middle by Jimmy Eat World and Guster’s Careful. By middle school, he was on to his first original, Girl with No Place in My Heart dripping with imagined angst. Aside from high school musicals, the creative juices truly began to flow with his basement band, Clearly From Negligence, which was named a Top Ten Teen Band by SchoolJam USA in 2011.

College beckoned, however, as did the a cappella bug with The Yellow Jackets of the University of Rochester. After a great college run, it was time to “light out for the territory,” as Huck Finn said. Luke has embarked on his indie music odyssey in support of Portrait of the Young Man as an Artist, and is in the process of setting the Guinness World Record for most friends’ couches slept on in one year.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Kenny White - NYC



Kenny's newly released album, LONG LIST OF PRIORS, is aptly named, because he spent decades touring as keyboard player in bands including Jonathan Edwards and Livingston Taylor, He then became one of NYC's most successful record producer and arranger of TV ads. Although he left it all in 2001 to write and tour on behalf of his own humorous  and heart-stirring songs of the human condition, he produced Peter Wolf's last four albums. They include the Rolling Stone cited “Essential” FOOL'S PARADE, and SLEEPLESS, one of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time.” Kenny plays keyboards and sings on all four recordings. This Peter Wolf tour, therefore, is a rare event featuring Kenny as guest artist on keyboards, along with Duke Levine on guitar and Marty Ballou on bass, both also members of Kenny's LONG LIST OF PRIORS band. Peter Wolf makes a guest appearance on Kenny's album (along with David Crosby, Larry Campbell and others).


Short Bio: Born in New York City and raised across the river in Fort Lee, New Jersey, Kenny White began his career in the 1970s, touring exclusively as the keyboard player for Jonathan Edwards and Livingston Taylor, with whom he opened Linda Ronstadt’s legendary, “Living in the USA” tour.  He then became a fixture in the NYC studio scene throughout the 1980s and 1990s, producing and arranging literally hundreds of commercials for TV and radio, beginning with “The Unsinkable Taste of Cheerios,” nearly seven years of Chevrolet’s “Heartbeat of America” campaign, and countless ads for the Coca Cola company. Commercial work enabled White to direct artists as renowned and varied as Gladys Knight, Ms.Ronstadt, Mavis Staples, Ricky Skaggs, and Aaron Neville.

Kenny White’s record producing credits include Shawn Colvin’s Grammy-nominated song, “I Don’t Know Why,” as well as the last four solo CDs for Peter Wolf, formerly with the J. Geils Band:  FOOL’S PARADE, SLEEPLESS (named one of Rolling Stone’s “500 Greatest Albums of All Time”), MIDNIGHT SOUVENIRS, which debuted at #45, and the 2016 release A CURE FOR LONELINESS, which reached #23 on the Americana chart in its first 6 weeks. Kenny often joins Wolf’s Midnight Ramblers band on tour.  The productions with Wolf afforded Kenny the opportunity to work with an array of guest artists including Mick Jagger, Merle Haggard, Shelby Lynne, Steve Earle, Neko Case, and to record a track side by side with Keith Richards.  Robert Plant was recently sighted in rapt attention at one of White’s solo shows in the UK and Jackson Browne, the same, at one of Kenny’s L.A. shows.

He still, from time to time, tours with Judy Collins throughout North America and performs the duet “Veterans’ Day” on her recent BOHEMIAN CD.  He often shares a stage with his good friend Cheryl Wheeler, appearing on her live recording, GREETINGS, which he also produced. And though he has all but given up his days as a sideman, in 2014, he accepted an offer by none other than Tom Jones to play in his ‘soul quartet’ for a sold-out, three week US tour.

It is rare that a singer-songwriter is also a producer and arranger.  These in-studio videos of the making of the album illustrate the many layers of Kenny White.
A Road Less Traveled: https://youtu.be/c1U1xs1bOBQ
The Other Shore: https://youtu.be/yTXWg7iWaCs
Another Bell Unanswered: https://youtu.be/9uwFioLeM74
West L.A.: https://youtu.be/AbLWCE0xRMw
Cyberspace: https://youtu.be/izaM_l4bCQI
Olives And The Grapes: https://youtu.be/tHkSqZh9vbQ
Che Guevara: https://youtu.be/6eietccd58Y
The Color Of The Sky: https://youtu.be/L_JEuTswA-8

Thank You, Tim!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Blair Clark - Madison, WI


Blair Clark - Madison, WI

"The good mother the drunk old man the family the pets the doubters and believers. I sing songs from my broken heart and my broken head" from Blair's bandcamp page.


3 songs. 7 minutes. 27 seconds. Garage Pop Punk Rock. Park it in your head. Play it in your soul. Get Off!
releases December 15, 2016

Guitars, Bass, Drums, and Vocals - Blair Clark
All songs written by Blair Clark



This should be shaken not stirred. Weep, wail, and cry. Shame.
released November 17, 2016
Guitars, Bass, Drums, Vocals - Blair Clark
All songs written by Blair Clark

Before I start this review I want to thank Blair for supporting my blog and sending me his music to review. Blair is a unique and prolific songwriter who plays all the instruments on his original recordings. I must congratulate him for reaching his goal of 10 EP's by the end of this year. Congrats, Blair! I really enjoy listening to Blair's passionate music, he is deserving of positive attention by the music industry.
Shame reminded me of a song from the 50's. I can picture a crowded sock hop swinging and swaying to the slow sexy groove of Shame. Blair's vocal style is full of heartfelt yearning and emotion.
Cry uses musical tension to create a uptempo, dynamic song. Cry conveys feelings of a sad and longing urgency. Cry is a great example of Blair's unique songwriting style.
Broken Heart is the perfect title for a song that is overflowing with sincere sadness and obvious heartache.
Hopeless Holiday's tempo is uplifting and full of great guitar playing. The lyrical content defies the quick tempo reflecting on some truly sad subject matter.
Shame is one of Blair's best efforts to date. If you are not familiar with Blair's music I highly recommend you click on one of the links and check it out.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/shame



Hello , Blair Clark released an EP on October 20th called The State I'm In. Bad cops, bad fathers, divorce, all kinds of struggle for all kinds of people. The State I'm In. Blair Clark is a songwriter currently without a home, on his way to California.

The State I'm In review by Joe Tell.
The first track, Cinch, has an alternative sound, reminiscent of the early 90's rock. Blair's vocals sound heartfelt and soulful as always.
The title track, The State I'm In, is a short song with some unique vocal sounds. Blair sings some high falsetto along with his acoustic guitar.
The lyrics for Dirty Cop seem to be a commentary about the daily police shootings that plague our current state of affairs seemingly every day. The lead guitar line that plays throughout the song is tasteful and sounds cool.
Life Is But A Dream sounds like a country song with a new wave edge.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/the-state-im-in



Hello , I'm Blair Clark my current EP is called Is Love and Fuss Trouble and Cuss. Is Love Coming Back kinda reminds me of Burt Bacharach, not the music or the words just the feel. I'm certain if he would punch me if he heard this. I'm a songwriter currently without a home, on my way to California in Oct. My last band was an americana band called the Sills. I walked away from that band last year and now I'm recording EPs. This is my 7th EP this year, the goal is 10 by December.
Thanks for listening - Blair Clark

Love and Fuss Trouble and Cuss review by Joe Tell.
First off, the title of Blair's latest release, Love and Trouble Trouble and Cuss is just a great title.
Is Love Coming Back has a rather sad and melancholy feel. The lyrics tell the story of lonely feelings and the void that is created by a love that has gone away.
Long Way Around somehow manages to sound even sadder than the last track. The slow tempo and the vocals convey a feeling of a love gone awry. Any song that makes you feel something inside is a great song and this song certainly has that quality.
Fair Carnival has a much happier go-lucky sound, reminding me of the good times a weekend visit to an amusement park promises.
CooCoo is about the effects a love affair sometimes has on a person, seemingly driving them crazy.
Call It Love is a stripped down acoustic guitar/vocal song that has Blair's vocals moving up and down in a lonesome timbre. Once again Blair's vocal delivery conveys the feelings of a love affair that has gone awry and the lonely longing that takes over.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/love-and-fuss-and-trouble-and-cuss



Do No Good is a sadness EP. It concerns the everyday sadness and special event sadness, last years tour difficulties. I added Shop! cause it just seemed to fit in, wrote for underculture years ago. The song Do No Good is my fav. The cheesy keyboard makes me smile. Enjoy.

Hello , I'm Blair Clark and I have a EP called Do No Good. It is a darkish low. It's moody. A fine August listen. It will move you around. I'm a songwriter in Madison, my last band was an americana band called the Sills. I walked away from that band last year and now I'm recording EPs. This is my 6th EP this year, the goal is 10 by December. Hope you enjoy, thanks - Blair

Do No Good review by Joe Tell.
The title song Do No Good has a minimalistic music track which allows Blair's vocals to convey a feeling of sad regret.
The Road To Denver has a retro sound reminiscent of original 50's rock and roll. Blair's unique vocals add a new wave edge to punctuate the rock track.
Growing Up In Reverse features one of Blair's most ambitious musical tracks. The staccato rhythm is held together by a moving bass track and Blair's way cool vocal stylings.
Shop! seems to be a commentary on the materialistic based society we live in. The lyrics convey the message that shopping has become more important than taking care of real life issues.
Sad Days is a melancholy track that conveys the feeling of a all consuming sadness that seems to permeate our lives at times.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/do-no-good



Blair Clark has released a EP called Look Out!. This should be parked in your garage. It is rock and roll at its lowest. This is Blair Clark's 5th EP this year, the goal is 10 by December.
Hope you enjoy, thanks for listening - Blair.  

Look Out! review by Joe Tell.
Blair Clark's new EP Look Out! starts out off with a bang! The title track, Look Out! is a uptempo punk rocker that is sure get your blood pumping. All the impressive performances are done by Blair himself. The guitar solos are exciting and the chorus jumps out of the mix proving that Blair knows how to craft a great sounding rock and roll song.
If You Loved Me continues in the same vein as Look Out! The multi-talented Blair kicks out another great jam that stops and starts with urgent rock energy.
Walking Alone sounds like the songs from Blair's previous EP Take Me Like You Found Me. Blair's vocals convey a lonely longing that is compelling and hard to ignore.
Blair delivers another lo-fi masterpiece with Can't Go On Without You. The sound is reminiscent of early Talking Heads.
Heartbeats is a uptempo garage rocker that sounds like it's going to fall apart any second. By the time the beat is established the song abruptly ends.
Blair Clark soundcloud page https://soundcloud.com/blair-clark-804478008

 

Blair Clark is a low crooner and a late bloomer. He is a singer songwriter from Madison WI. In 2009 he formed the punk rock band underculture. Two years later he started the band The Sills. The music fused bluegrass and folk with punk rock and rockabilly. They put out two cd's and then Blair walked away in 2015. He is currently recording from his apartment on a smallish 8trk on a 10 EP run. He writes songs from his broken heart and broken head. The music is lean. His June release Take Me Like You Found Me is pop candy. In May he released Demolicious it is delicious lo-fi. You can check out all of his EPs at https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/ The Sills can also be found on bandcamp.

Take Me Like You Found Me review by Joe Tell.
Take Me Like You Found Me is a authentic lo-fi experience the likes of which haven't been heard of since the late 60's. The throwback sound brings to mind all of the coolest bands who were influential in the development of punk and alternative rock. The song has a uplifting tempo which may very well inspire much dancing when played live. Blair's vocals are sweet and soulful, using accents and fluttering tremelo to create a unique singing style.
Come Away With Me would fit right in at any rock and roll dance party. A crowded dance hall full of swaying bodies comes to mind when I listen to this song. A guitar plays in the background and fills in all of the open spaces in the melody perfectly. The vocals convey the feeling of smoldering urgency.
See Saw is a melancholy, yet very melodic, rock and roll song which immediately drew me in. The song has a laid back feel yet still manages to sound strong with it's outstanding lead guitar hooks. Blair Clark's sad vocal tones convey the mood and set the tone for the song. See Saw is my newest, favorite song and the best song on Take Me Like You Found Me.
Silver Bells has the feel of late 50's rock and roll rave up. The descending guitar chords help create the mood with a fantastic, jingly jangly Fender sound. Pull out your old leather and slick your hair back before you listen is highly recommended. Bum a cigarette off your buddy to complete the picture.
Ithaca closes out Take Me Like You Found Me is style. Blair's influences can be heard on this track. Traces of Lou Reed, David Bowie and Iggy Pop can be heard in Blair's heartfelt vocal delivery.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/take-me-like-you-found-me



Everybody has a sexy side. This is mine. https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/demolicious
Demolicious released May 19, 2016
Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Drums, and Drum Machine -Blair Clark
Words and Music by Blair Clark



Songs for the Sills. When I walked away from the Sills, we had a songs that were never recorded. These are a few. https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/no-sills-no-sale
No Sills No Sale released April 21, 2016
Guitars, Bass, Drums, Xylophone and Vocals - Blair Clark
Recorded at Home on tiny 8 track recorder


Ring A Bell released February 15, 2016 https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/ring-a-bell
Credits: Blair Clark - guitar, vocals
Leah Brooke - vocals
Todd Phipps - keyboard
Pete Olig - bass
Ken Koeppler - drums
Words and music by Blair Clark, all rights reserved
Recorded and mixed by Ken Koeppler
The Sound Garden studio


Blair Clark twitter https://twitter.com/keepbailing



Thank You Blair!



Sunday, November 20, 2016

Michael Biddlecom - Then Came Silence


Michael Biddlecom - Then Came Silence CD art.




First before I write about this tribute CD I must thank Cheryl LaDuca for sending me a copy of Then Came Silence to review. Thank You for thinking of me Cheryl!
As I listen to the music Mike created and performed a flood of memories comes to mind of Mike and I when we wrote and performed many times together. It makes me wish for those days when I was younger and lived for the music we created together. It also makes me wonder what would have happened if we could have gotten together one more time to make music. Once again I have to thank Cheryl and all the people who were involved in putting this CD together so that Mike's music can be heard after his untimely death. It's obvious that Mike was a enormously talented individual and a prolific songwriter.

Then Came Silence review by Joe Tell.
The first song, It's A Shame, really has a great melody with a harmonious hook. The sound initially reminded me of a 80's pop song because of the bright sounding keyboard track. Mike really rocks it up with a fantastic solo that takes the song out. I'm not sure if this song was chosen first because of the title but it describes how I feel about Mike's untimely death.
Everyone can relate to the lyrics of the next song, Doubt, in one way or another. The song has a melancholy feel with a strong chorus that hooked me in on the first listen. A melodic guitar solo reinforces the melody while it weaves in and out the rhythm track.
Testing 1-2 is a rocker that packs a punch. A strong rhythm track carries a melodic line with lyrics full of double entendre.
Mike shows a softer side with Tears In The Night. A clean lead guitar solo punctuates the music lifting the energy of the song a bit higher. Lifting the song up even higher Mike rips another heavy solo.
Every Buffalonian can relate to the lyrics of Frost On My Window. Once again Mike whips up a magnificent melody reinforcing it with a dual keyboard and guitar track. The song has a smooth flow and feel until it's rocked up with a blazing lead guitar solo. I can picture snow flying in the frosty air as I listen to this track.
One A Kind picks up the pace with a heavy intro that reminded me of the music of Michael Schenker. Mike plays a tasteful mid-tempo rhythm track filled with bass guitar fills that keep the energy flowing. Mike's vocals top off this rocker perfectly and keep it moving in the right direction.
Faces is driven the clean sounds of a Stratocaster and the lyrical content of what can best be described as a living nightmare.
Gotta Stop Lovin You is a love ballad that slows the pace with a beautiful melody that is punctuated with more Stratocaster guitar solos and fills.
Destinations is a uptempo percussive track that delivers a different sound than the rest of the CD.
Empty Rooms is a slow and spooky track that would fit right in a horror movie soundtrack.
All the music on Then Came Silence was written and performed by Mike. Once again I must thank Cheryl LaDuca for keeping me in the loop with Mike's great music.
Post is dedicated to Mike's memory and his music.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

The Stray Birds



The Stray Birds are playing The Sportsmen's Tavern on 11/18.
The Stray Birds released their new album titled Magic Fire in August, which was produced by Larry Campbell. Magic Fire builds on the success of The Stray Birds' 2014 Yep Roc debut, Best Medicine, which was hailed by NPR's World Café for its "strong harmonies and sharp songwriting" and debuted at #2 on the Billboard Bluegrass chart. Wide Open Country called Magic Fire "captivating," while Elmore praised their sound "that is so well-crafted; so tightly knit and synergistic, that to imagine them missing a member is to imagine a jigsaw puzzle with a missing piece."
No Depression deems the trio "a delight," while Pop Matters commended their ability to "make beautiful bluegrass, a lush sound characterized by tight harmonies and all-encompassing instrumentation." It was that unique formula that first brought them national attention and fueled their breakout in 2012, when their self-titled/self-released debut landed amongst NPR's Top Ten Folk/Americana Albums of the Year and earned them major festival performances everywhere from MerleFest to Scotland's Celtic Connections.

They won best song @ Folk Alliance this year for the title track "Best Medicine"

NPR Announced the record with really nice things to say about the band & the way they play their instruments: http://www.npr.org/2016/06/06/480638472/songs-we-love-the-stray-birds-shining-in-the-distance
Some other recent press:
http://www.npr.org/event/music/382366561/the-stray-birds-on-mountain-stage
http://www.thevinyldistrict.com/storefront/2016/08/the-stray-birds-the-tvd-first-date/
http://www.mcall.com/entertainment/music/mc-stray-birds-philadelphia-folk-festival-20160818-story.html

Thank You Tim!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Rokkin' T-Shirts For Sale - Limited Time Only


Well Behaved Women Are Boring
Let them know you are not boring! Nor well behaved! Great shirt for all of the women who are not well-behaved..or a bit WILD..  or yourself ( YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE! )  Order now this is a LIMITED EDITION...time is almost up to order. Great Gift for the WILD WOMAN in your life!!!!
Order now $22.99 !! ( if you order more than one each one is discounted) order one for you and your BFF!
https://teespring.com/well-behaved-women-are-boring#pid=370&cid=6532&sid=front




SOME GO TO THERAPY- I PLAY MY GUITAR
Limited Edition • "SOME GO TO THERAPY " Be Quick to Avoid disappointment, these WILL sell out! Normally, $29.95 – Today you can buy THE T-SHIRT for only $19.95, and have a Collectors Item. Order yours before we sell out. Perfect gift for the guitar player in your life..or yourself..
https://teespring.com/iplaymyguitar#pid=2&cid=2397&sid=front




Friday, October 28, 2016

Drew Angus



A promising young voice in songwriting, Drew Angus is just the kind of new blood that makes pop music so enduring. With indelible hooks, and savvy craftsmanship, and city informed lyrics, he brings a certain verve to his work that has resonated with audiences and fellow performers alike. His work ethic and effortless appeal have led him down some pretty amazing paths. He was a finalist on the Farewell Season of American Idol, has had the opportunity to share the stage with Anders Osborne, Marc Broussard, Nakia from Season 1 of the Voice, and sing with Blondie Chaplin and Ivan Neville on a record produced by the legendary Rob Fraboni (Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, Bob Marley, and more). His 2013 single Something Crazy, produced by Joe Vulpis(Lady GaGa) made it to #30 on the iTunes Singles charts.

Drew has maintained a tireless writing and performing regimen since deciding to pursue music full time in January of 2012. For the past four years he has been playing out several nights a week, clocking 100+ performances a year at venues like Rockwood Music Hall, Brooklyn Night Bazaar, and The Bitter End, as well as festivals like SXSW, NXNE, and more on the strength of his early demo’s. He even made a surprise appearance on a Southwest Airlines flight, and sang his way into the top 10 on Boston’s Community Auditions: Star of the Day. With his star so clearly on the rise, Drew Angus has established himself as a talent to watch.

This Fall, Drew hits the road in support of his new EP Hold onto Something (Streetdate - 11/4/16) recorded at Degraw Sound in Brooklyn, NY, produced by Harper James, and mastered by Sterling Sounds’ Joe LaPorta.


www.drewangus.com

Thank You Tracy!