Hosted by: LouLombardi aka "Loudini" and Kevin O'Connor
Title: Don't Embarrass Yourself or Your Audience. ALWAYS be PRO!
Episode Notes: Kevin and Lou discuss the importance of professionalism... shout outs to John Denver, Glenn Campbell, The Bay City Rollers... also... this year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees. Plus featured music by Billy the Kid and the Regulators, Mick Kolassa, Deb Callahan, The Sheepdogs, and the Beat Daddys
Trends come and go, styles fall in and out of fashion, but The Sheepdogs remain steadfast in their commitment to rock n’ roll excellence. Since their inception, the band has always sought to play the kind of music they themselves love: “Pure, simple, good-time music,” as singer/guitarist Ewan Currie puts it. It’s no surprise, then, that the band’s fifth LP, Future Nostalgia, is firmly rooted in the rock tradition that listeners have come to expect from the boys.
The idea was simple: find a nice, quiet, secluded place and make a record packed with all the hot guitar licks and sing-along choruses they could muster. So the band holed up in a rented house in the remote, idyllic setting of Stony Lake, Ontario, and set about creating a studio where they could work all hours of the day. “We wanted to cut out all the noise and get back to a place where we could just fully immerse ourselves in music,” says Currie, who took on production duties for the album. “We worked hard, but we also made sure to keep it loose and have ourselves a good time.”
Future Nostalgia is the middle ground between the JUNO-winning, platinum-certified Learn & Burn, which spawned the rock radio staple “I Don’t Know,” and its equally successful follow-up, 2012’s The Sheepdogs, featuring the instantly-recognizable, Gold-certified singles “Feeling Good” and “The Way It Is.”
The former was recorded by Currie and the band in their hometown of Saskatoon before they were propelled to fame as the first unsigned band to grace the cover of Rolling Stone, pressure free and at their own pace. Its follow-up, however, recorded in Nashville with producer and Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney, was a much more formal and rigid studio experience. This time, the band aimed to combine the successes and lessons learned from these opposite ends of the recording spectrum.
Future Nostalgia builds upon The Sheepdogs’ foundation of feel-good vocal harmonizing and nasty guitar jamming. “Our musical journey has been about trying to find how we sound our best,” states Currie, and the album represents the pinnacle of their progress thus far. That’s made immediately clear from the opening riff of “Downtown,” an undeniable straight-up rocker that sparkles with the warmth of summer. Down at the other end of the street is “Bad Lieutenant,” which walks a dark and sexy strut courtesy of bassist Ryan Gullen and drummer Sam Corbett, who also tear up the furious “I Really Wanna Be Your Man.”
Newcomers Rusty Matyas and Ewan’s brother Shamus Currie, on guitar and keys respectively, bring a new spirit to the wistful back porch vibes of “Same Old Feeling” or the brooding melancholy of “Jim Gordon.” Elsewhere, the ominous groove of “Help Us All” calls to mind the bleak violence of Blood Meridian as sung by Sly & the Family Stone, punctuated by a devastating trombone solo from Shamus.
Now, The Sheepdogs are eager to embark on the next leg of their journey, which will involve many miles logged and stages played. “I’m excited for people to hear the album, because it’s a labour of love,” Currie says proudly. “Now, it’s just about getting it out there and getting people into it.”
From their cramped Saskatchewan jam space to gold and platinum records and shows with rock icons, The Sheepdogs haven’t strayed from their goal of sharing pure, passionate rock n’ roll with anyone who’ll listen – and Future Nostalgia is packed with it.
I’m Mick Kolassa, also known as Michissippi Mick. I am a lifelong musician and hardcore blues fan who also happens to be on the Board of Directors of the Blues Foundation. My love of the blues began 50 years ago and with this and my previous album I am able to share that love with you. You can see that I love all styles of blues, and I also love to find the blues song hidden in tunes that most people wouldn’t think of as blues. I hope you enjoy listening to it as much as I’ve enjoyed putting it together.
The Blues Foundation is Memphis-based, but world-renown as THE organization dedicated to preserving our blues music history, celebrating recording and performance excellence, supporting blues education and ensuring the future of this uniquely American art form.
The Blues Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that works to support the blues and the blues community in many ways. The Foundation holds several regular events to celebrate the blues and recognize excellence in blues through the Blues Music Awards, the International Blues Challenge, Keeping the Blues Alive Awards and the annual induction of individuals and their works into the Blues Hall of Fame. The Blues Foundation also provides or sponsors programs on blues education, including Blues in the Schools and Generation Blues, and in health care for blues artists through Sound Healthcare and the HART Fund. MORE INFO ->
All Proceeds from my albums will go to support two of these important programs: The HART Fund and Generation Blues.
THE HART FUND (Handy Artists Relief Trust) is for Blues musicians and their families in financial need due to a broad range of health concerns. The Fund provides for acute, chronic and preventive medical and dental care as well as funeral and burial expenses.
GENERATION BLUES provides scholarship to artists under the age of 21 to study at reputable camps, seminars and workshop programs such as Port Townsend Acoustic Blues Festival, Augusta Heritage Center and Fernando Jones’ Columbia College Blues Camp.
AWARD WINNING BLUES
2014 INTERNATIONAL BLUES CHALLENGE 3RD PLACE WINNER
2013 INTERNATIONAL BLUES CHALLENGE BEST SELF PRODUCED CD TOP 5 FINALIST
2013 BLUES SOCIETY OF WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA 1ST PLACE WINNER
Billy the Kid and The Regulators are a high powered, guitar driven, rhythm and blues band based in Pittsburgh. Lead singer Billy Evanochko is widely-known across the Steel City for his impassioned lyrics, seductive vocals, and stinging guitar riffs. Together with his band, The Regulators, they deliver a well-balanced dose of funky rhythm and blues, with heart and soul being the main ingredient. Playing countless clubs and festivals throughout the country. The band attracts fans with their fresh mix and interpretation of the iconic R&B experience.
Billy the Kid & The Regulators won over the Blues Society of Western Pa taking first place honors among the acts at the Blues Challenge in Pittsburgh in 2013 earning them a spot at the 2014 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN. The Band competed with acts from all over the world in Memphis January 22-25, 2014, earning them the 3rd Place Win among the best blues bands in the world!
Their Sophmore CD "She Got a Hold on Me", released in April 2012, wowed judges at the 2013 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN in which it placed in the top 5 best CD's submitted from around the world for the Best Self Produced CD.
Billy the Kid and the Regulators earned a spot in the 2008 International Blues Competition in Memphis TN by winning the Appalachian Blues Challenge for the West Virginia Blues Society.
"Billy Evanochko and company deliver a unique blend of contemporary blues with a big side of funk. This definitely is a band to be reckoned with" - Scott Tady, Beaver County Times
"The boy can flat out play." "Billy and the boys are one of the best kept secrets in the Blues. If you ain't heard of em, you better ask somebody!" - Michael Burks, Alligator Records Recording artist
"Billy The kid & The Regulators are the best band I've had as an opening act this year period." - Tinsley Ellis, Telarc Records Recording artist
Billy has appeared with & opened for: Koko Taylor • Bernard Allison • Michael Burks • Ana Popovic • James Cotton • Jimmie Vaughan • Hubert Sumlin • G.E. Smith Band • Zack Harmon • Tab Benoit • Rory Block • Chris Thomas King • Savoy Brown • Blind Boys of Alabama • Eric Lindell • Carl Weathersby • Tommy Castro • Debbie Davies • Magic Slim • Scott Holt • James Soleberg • Bob Margolin • Anson Funderburg w/ Sam Meyers • Jason Ricci & New Blood • Guitar Shorty • Magic Dick • Lee Oskar • Shemeka Copeland • Mark Hummel • Fiona Boyes • Rich DelGrosso • Coco Montoya • The Sean Carney Band • Sue Foley • Deborah Coleman • Roxanne Potvin • Otis Taylor • Lurrie Bell • The Kilborn Alley Blues Band • Dave McKenzie • Kelley Hunt • Sean Costello • Pops Walker • Michael Hills Blues Mob~ Kansas~Shemekia Copeland, Just to name a few...
Billy the Kid and the Regulators continue to write music, and perform cooking up their brand of blues with soul being the main ingredient.
Philadelphia’s blues and soul drenched vocalist and songwriter Deb Callahan grew up in the Boston area but has been a mainstay on the mid-Atlantic music scene since the late 90’s. During this time she has gained a reputation for writing creative blues, soul and roots influenced original music and using her powerful, expressive voice to deliver an exciting live show. Her 2002 debut CD “If the Blues Had Wings” was featured as the hot debut in the October/November 2004 issue of Blues Revue Magazine. Blues Revue referred to her as the next Bonnie Raitt and raved “Philly’s Deb Callahan has the pipes, the songs and the raw talent to graduate to the next level”.
Deb releases her 5th CD “Sweet Soul” Sept 1, 2015 on Blue Pearl Records. The CD, produced by renowned producer and drummer Tony Braunagel, was recorded at Ultratone Studios in Los Angeles, CA. Deb and guitar player Allen James travelled to Los Angeles in February 2015 to record the tracks with an all star studio line-up including Johnny Lee Schell, engineering and slide guitar, Mike Finnigan on keyboards, Reggie McBride on bass, Braunagel on drums and James on guitar. This group of LA musicians have recorded and toured with performers such as Etta James, Bonnie Raitt and Taj Mahal so it was a truly wonderful experience to play with and learn from each one.
It’s been almost 5 years since Deb’s last CD, “Tell It Like It Is” was released. Shortly after this release, Deb became a mom to her now 4 year old son Elijah. The experience of being a new mom has had a direct impact on her writing and focus in her life. The songs from “Sweet Soul” were written during an overall sweet and rich phase of life. Deb worked with James and Chris Arms (who produced Deb’s last 3 CD’s) to write the original material and with producer Braunagel to find some gems written by others that fit the vibe as well. The mood of this blues, soul, roots CD is upbeat, rockin, funky and fun and explores the theme of love and family with an honest and at times humorous view into both its joys and challenges. This includes the experience of loving a child or partner, the connection and sweetness you feel when you slow down and just be present with ones you love, the pain and difficulty of letting go of a family member, the ups and downs of living with someone, the inner tension about balancing family and career, the energy it takes to keep things running to do a lot of different things in life.
Doing social work in the heart of Philadelphia would be a good place to learn about life’s hard knocks and this urban school ground taught singer/songwriter Deb Callahan well. Her rich, honest and soulful tunes resonate with listeners and run the gamut from soulful ballads, to upbeat, dance oriented grooves. Her road tested band includes Allen James, Garry Lee and Tom Walling. Deb is working on her 5th CD which she is hoping to release sometime in 2014.