Friday, April 28, 2017

CD Review: The Chris Robinson Brotherhood Whip Up A New Batch Of "Betty's Self-Rising Southern Blends"

Lead singer and songwriter for the Black Crowes, Chris Robinson has one of the most iconic voices in rock music. Since the demise of the Black Crowes, the Chris Robinson Brotherhood has fulfilled the void left by the southern blues jam band. Along with members Neal Casal, Adam MacDougall, Tony Leone and Jeff Hill, the Chris Robinson Brotherhood have become one of the must see touring acts covering the U.S.

Back in 2013, the band entrusted the work of Betty Cantor-Jackson to record their live shows in San Francisco for a live album. Betty was a former record producer for the Grateful Dead, so she knew exactly how to record this jam band in a live setting and thus the "Betty's Blends" live series was born. The Chris Robinson Brotherhood are preparing to release their third volume in the series on May 5th, through Silver Arrow Records. The new release titled "Betty's Blends, Vol. 3: Self Rising, Southern Blends" captures the work of the band during their fall run of live shows along the southern east coast in 2015. The set will be released on vinyl and CD.

The new release begins with the Black Crowes original "I Ain't Hiding" and jamming blues cover of Slim Harpo's "Got Love." The CRB dive right into their spacey, country original "Clear Blue Sky & The Good Doctor" as the boys sound more comfortable with their own material as they look to experiment more on some of the album's cover songs like "I'm A Hog For You" and "Get Out My Life Woman." The CRB open up their sound on the 14-plus minute musical journey of "Ride," before closing their new release with the slow sway of "Girl I Love You" and a sonically charged version of Bob Dylan's "She Belongs To Me."

The Chris Robinson Brotherhood are currently on tour through the end of May. For a complete list of live dates and to find out more about their new live album "Betty's Blends, Vol. 3: Self-Rising, Southern Blends," please visit chrisrobinsonbrotherhood.com.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

CD Review: Jaco Pastorius Provides The Code Of "Truth, Liberty & Soul" With New Live Album

Bassist Jaco Pastorius (Weather Report) is seeing a revival in his music, thanks to the film "JACO," which was produced by Metallica's Robert Trujillo. The film dove into the life of Jaco Pastorius like never before, reminding us what a great musician his was. Now, to celebrate more of his music, Resonance Records is releasing a newly discovered live recording from Jaco Pastorius from 1982.
 
This new live album was released as a limited deluxe 3-LP edition on April 22nd (Record Store Day) and will be available as a 2-CD set on May 19th. The deluxe edition also includes a 100-page book filled with new essays by Trujillo, producer Zev Feldman and Jaco Pastorius authority Bill Milkowski, just to name a few. The book also includes many rare, unpublished photos. The show was captured for NPR's "Jazz Alive!" broadcast, but this new version features over 40 minutes of extra material not aired on the original broadcast.
 
The set begins with the high-energy of the 13-minute "Invitation" as Jaco and trumpet player Randy Brecker trade solos. You can almost feel the love Jaco Pastorius has for performing live with his funk-jazz delivery of "The Chicken," before stretching out to expand his sound on the jazz fusion of "Donna Lee." Jaco and his band do an outstanding job with their versions of "Sophisticated Lady," featuring harmonica icon Toots Thielemans and "I Shot The Sheriff," featuring Othello Molineaux on steel pans.
 
Percussionist Don Alias gets his time to shine on "Okonkole Y Trompa" and on the 14-minute presentation of "Bass And Drum Improvisation," which includes elements of Jim Hendrix, before closing out the set with "Fannie Mae." To find out more about the new Jaco Pastorius release "Truth, Liberty & Soul - Live In NYC: The Complete 1982 NPR Jazz Alive! Rcording," please visit resonancerecords.org.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

CD Review: New Music From Singer/Songwriters Sam Nicolosi, Paul Bergman, Wes John Cichosz, Eric Matthews And Blindman

From Los Angeles, CA comes the latest release from singer/songwriter Sam Nicolosi titled "Origins." The new 5-song release begins with the pounding beats of the album's first single, "Caught Up." He mixes a dance groove with soulful lyrics to create an addictive sound for pop radio. He continues his new album with the up-beat tempo of "Realign" as Sam's vocals sound right at home among this pop setting. His new short release finishes with the hip-hop sounds of "Patience" as his lyrics are an inspiration to create your own future, and the smooth R&B flow of "Fiction." To find out more about Sam Nicolosi and his latest release "Origins," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/samnicolosi.

Next, from Manitoba, Canada comes the latest release, "Anthropology" from singer/songwriter Paul Bergman. It was released last year and features a truthful, folk sound, without the need for extra instruments. His new ten-song release begins with the short, acoustic tale "Down The Dirt Road" and the storied lyrics of "Creeping Charlie." The slow sway of "Night Is Falling" and the gentle Americana tones of "Home Fires" eases your troubles away as you listen and relax to the wonderful songs of Paul Bergman. The album reaches it's pinnacle with the 7-plus minute story of "Albert Johnson" and the folk gem "Sundogs," before finishing with the up-tempo strumming of "In The Cellar" and the quiet send off "Happy Trails, Sad Camper." To find more about Paul Bergman and his latest release "Anthropology," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/paulbergmanmusic.

From Chicago comes the latest release from singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Wes John Cichosz titled "The Moon Threads A Needle." After performing regularly with members of Wilco and Tortoise, Cichosz is now ready to delivery his new full-length album. The new 13-song release begins with the jazz-funk groove of "Everybody Says" as the melody is sure to get you moving. The beautiful acoustics of "Kittens And Ice Cream" and the R&B tones of "The Birds Of November" showcases the diversity in Cichosz's songwriting as he captures the mood of song. He wraps up his new album with the soulful delivery of "Bottle Made Of Twine" on this blues number and the acoustic rock of "When Molly Got Lost." The album also includes 4 radio edits of the songs "Everybody Says," "Bottle Made Of Twine," "The Only Day" and "When Molly Got Lost." To find out more about Wes John Cichosz and his latest release "The Moon Threads A Needle," please visit wjcmusic.com.

Singer/songwriter Eric Matthews returns with a new solo album titled "Too Much World." It was released back in March and features a dozen tracks, beginning with the David Bowie-vibe of "Pink." The low-key, acoustic strumming of "Dragonfly" carries a classic Pink Floyd sound as Matthews delivers the perfect recipe for progressive-pop success. He includes the 2016 single "Exactly Like Them," which has a dark, alt-rock sound as Matthews vocals are supported by the music's steady rhythm. The music continues its dark, moody tone in "Shadows Fall," before picking the tempo up slightly for the folk-rock of "Never Mind Now" and the alternative guitar rock of "Ten More Masters." He finishes his new album with the beautifully delivered, quiet acoustics of "Your Mom's At Midnight" and the alt-pop of "Too Much World." To find out more about Eric Matthews and his latest release "Too Much World," please visit his Facebook page at facebook.com/EricMatthewsOfficially.

From New Jersey comes the latest album "See With Your Heart" from reggae artist Blindman. The new album features seven tracks, beginning with the up-tempo reggae-pop groove of "Irie Soul Uprising." The single "Feels Good" delivers a positive message as Blindman receives help from back singer Rica Newell on the undeniable groove. He slows the tempo down for the songs "Lonely Road" and "Hope," which are lead by it's deep bass groove and ska horns. Blindman wraps up his new album with the short, politically charged anthem "No Babylon." To find out more about Blindman and his latest release "See With Your Heart," please visit blindmanmusic.com.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

CD Review: New Music From Singer/Songwriters Janey Street, Greta Gaines, Raven, Devi And Chey

It has been less than a year since Janey Street released her last album ("My Side Of Paradise"), but when inspiration knocks, you have to answer the call. Her new album "In My Own Skin" will be released on June 23rd through Blue Elan Records. This new album looks to redirect Street's music to a more retro rock, blues, R&B sound, beginning with "Wrap My Mind Around You." The song's soulful vibe showcases Street's wonderful songwriting. She delivers a pop gem with "In My Own Skin," then rocks out on the bluesy guitar-driven "Guilty Pleasures." The Americana/country vibe of "Undone" and "Wreckage" showcases Street's return to her roots as these songs stand strong among her vast catalog of music. Her new album wraps up with the dark, acoustic pop tones of "Dignity" with vocal help by Dame Crowford and a re-recorded version of her hit single "Under The Clock." To find out more about Janey Street and her latest release "In My Own Skin," please visit her Facebook page at facebook.com/janey.street.

From Nashville comes the latest release from singer/songwriter Greta Gaines titled "Tumbleweed." Her new album will be released on June 16th through her own label, Big Air Records. Gaines is not only an established recording artist, but she is also a champion snowboarder, TV host and sportscaster. Her new short 7-song EP begins with the bluesy-pop tones of the title-song "Tumbleweed," as her vocals are strong and take control of the song. She keeps the tempo going with the storied lyrics of "Leo For Real," before slowing down for the acoustic folk ballad "Only Lonely." She finishes up with the classic Americana appeal of "Sweet William" and the country-rock of "Light It Up." Gaines will donate 100% of the download sales of "Light It Up" to NORML (Patients Out of Time and Tennessee United). To find out more about Greta Gaines and her latest release "Tumbleweed," please visit gretagaines.com.

Singer/songwriter and rising pop sensation Raven recently released her new album titled "The Burning EP." It includes five songs, includes the single "Phoenix" and it was produced by Grammy nominee Jimmy Greco (Beyonce, Britney Spears). Her new release begins with the attention getting, tribal beats of "Right Here Right Now" as Raven's vocals soar in the spotlight. Her song "Phoenix" is a dance club gem that is sure to empower all that hear it's call. The new short album wraps up with the up-beat dance groove of "Burnin' Up" and "Live Like We're Dying" as Raven pours all her emotions into this inspirational piece of music. To find out more about Raven and her latest release "The Burning EP," please visit kingdomofraven.com.

Philadelphia singer/songwriter Devi returns with her new full-length album "Amazing." The new 12-song release begins with the pop tones of the title-song and before showcasing her singing talents during the inspirational "One More Day." She ventures into the dance clubs with the electronic beats of "Bad Boy" and "Let's Get Funky," before slowing the tempo down for the emotional of "Darkness." Devi delivers the anthem of empowerment during "It's Your Life," before finishing her new release with the pop tones of "One And Only," the slow sway of "Still Got The Blues" and the sultry, acoustic delivery of "Somewhere Between Love And Hate." To find out more about Devi and her latest release "Amazing," please visit deviofficialnow.com.

Welch-born singer/songwriter Chey recently released her latest single "She's Got You" on April 21st. This pop, power ballad deals with loss and rejection as Chey's vocals are the perfect recipe for mainstream radio success. The single is backed by a remix version, which gives the song an up-beat dance vibe as the lyrics carry a different meaning in this dance beat setting. To find out more about Chey and her latest release "She's Got You," please visit cheymusic.com.

Monday, April 24, 2017

RJ Podcast: The Duskwhales Hopped On To Discuss Their New Album And Current East Coast Tour

The Duskwhales made a return visit to our podcast to talk about their new album "Sorrowful Mysteries" and let us know how their current tour is going, which includes a couple stops in Connecticut. And yes, the mini-van is still running great.