Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Interview with Sergio Stryker of The LIQS

3 piece band, fuzz, Japanese cars,90s wannabes, UFOs and government conspiracy.”  The words red, rag and bull come to mind.  And I wasn’t disappointed.  Liqs are from Chicago, Illinois, and if you haven’t met them before say hello to Esteban Miranda (Drums), /Nick Van Horn (Vocals and Guitar) and Sergio Stryker (Bass and brilliant surname).  Nothing For Me is a 2 track single and was released on the 6th January, and is their third release.  Both tracks are fuzz laden, much to my delight, but are quite different.  The title track is a kick in the face assault to the senses, with a rumbling bass and tight snare drum stopping the wailing feedback from tipping over the edge.  B Side Heartless, is a tighter affair, a more garage/psychedelic song than the A side, with a barrel load of reverb fighting for attention with the ever present fuzz. ( Source https://skipierage.wordpress.com/2016/01/18/liqs-nothing-for-me/)

Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

We have been good thank you, staying hidden indoor’s from this terrible Chicago winter

Can you tell us more about the story behind your track ¨Nothing For Me¨?

“Nothing For Me” was recorded last year around this time, it was a spur of the moment song we all wrote together, we also recorded the same night we wrote it.

Did any event in particular inspire the song?

“Nothing For Me” was inspired from dreaming and sleep

How was the film experience?

Our good friend Jordan Thomas made this music video for us, and it was a great time filming it. We just hung around drank some beer and filmed random stuff.

The single comes off your new album – any tentative title in mind?

No name for the album yet, but we got some ideas!

How was the recording and writing process?

It was quick and spontaneous, everything was thought out right in the moment; it was quite beautiful.

Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

Lyric’s were written just with random lines and poems from Nick’s journal, the meaning is created from the listener.

What role does Sonic Youth plays in your music?

Sonic Youth plays a huge role in our music. We love noise and experimental music more then anything.

Any plans to hit the road?

We will be trying to tour as much as possible in 2016.

What else is happening next in LIQS´ world?

Just about to finish up this record, and we have been playing a ton of shows in Chicago , as well as working on some fun side projects. - (Source http://ventsmagazine.com/2016/01/19/interview-liqs/ )

Monday, April 25, 2016

Interview with ALEKO

Aleko is an American Singer-Songwriter from southern New Jersey. Debut EP entitled Amity released on October 2, 2015.

Singer-Songwriter ALEKO puts himself on the musical map with his highly anticipated debut EP titled Amity. For fans of City & Colour, Bon Iver and Hozier, Aleko is right up your alley. Hailing from southern New Jersey Aleko provides soothing instrumentation and a modulated singing style which connects with listeners on a personal level.

Picking up the guitar at the age of 8, Aleko found his musical niche early in life. His intense interest in music had driven him to construct melodies and chords on the piano, and dabble in other instruments such as the mandolin and ukulele; even trying his hand at Opera. “I don’t want anything to ever sound forced. I’ve found that bringing a soulful sound out of my music is by simply letting it happen rather than ‘attempting’,” says Aleko.

Influenced by modern classics such as Justin Timberlake, John Legend, Dallas Green and John Mayer among others, Aleko hones his musical skills to create a unique musical experience. His inspiration comes from various different aspects of his life; whether it is the heat of the moment or the reaction to a situation, his music adapts. Aleko brings his insight to the world, without missing a beat.
There have been many turning points in his life that influenced his writing – heartbreak, love, joy, even despair – but Aleko finds a way to express himself through playing music like no other.

Throughout the songs on Amity, Aleko truly brings a heartfelt sound. Standout tracks such as "Why Am I" and "Hold On Me," help bring the album to life, while showcasing Aleko's skills not only as a performer, but as a songwriter as well. His music will leave you with goosebumps, and give you a reason to crave more.

Interview with MAKAR

Check this out on the Loudini Rock and Roll Circus
Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini
Makar (pronounced Mah-Kar) is a 15th century Scottish term meaning Poet and also a dark and groovy little New York band. A guitar and piano driven indie-rock band that makes Punk and Poet rejoice and dance together.
Makar began with Mark looking for a band to join as a singer and finding nothing appealing, so Andrea said "why don't you write your own songs?" So he did! But Andrea kept butting in and adding her 2 cents, so Mark said, "why don't you write a song?" So she did. And that's where it all began!

 Makar consists of Andrea DeAngelis, co-singer/songwriter/guitarist from New Jersey and Mark Purnell, co-singer/songwriter/pianist from New York.

Beginning in 2002-03, Makar played their first, nail-biting, exciting NYC gigs at places like Luna Lounge, CBGBs gallery, Knitting Factory and Pianos and began recording their 18-song debut album, 99 Cent Dreams, on July 14, 2002 at Multiway Studios in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. In 2005 the debut album, 99 Cent Dreams, arrived and Makar went to work promoting it! The 18 song album got played all over the world on FM, College, Indie and Internet radio stations. 99 Cent Dreams received many wonderful and heartfelt reviews from fans and critics alike such as independentsonly.com*, who called Makar, “a musical genius worth telling people about” and the Windy City Times, who hailed them as “a breath of fresh air.” The album sold thousands of downloads and physical copies. We even did a TV appearance or two!! Makar's first music video for the song "I Hate My Job" directed by Brian Schulz got played on MTV2. Makar made many incredible fans and played many a great show, even got signed to a non-exclusive deal with a little indie label named Sizzleteen Records!

Makar began work on its second album, Funeral Genius, August 2008 at the Seaside Lounge in Park Slope, Brooklyn. It is now available on Amazon.com, CD Baby, Itunes and everywhere digital music is sold in the universe and has already garnered amazing reviews from the likes of Rust Magazine’s Eric Peterson who said "get ready to make some space on your shelf or playlist for "Funeral Genius" and pick it up right away. It's going to be one of your most-loved albums of all time. Essential." Funeral Genius recently landed Makar on the top 300 Best NYC Indie Bands list by Brooklyn’s prestigious Deli Magazine along with such artists as Lana Del Rey, MGMT and Vampire Weekend!

Watch out for tour dates so we can put a rock 'n roll smile on your face while shaking your hips and minds awake. No more living thick and slow my friends! As Jim Morrison used to say “wake up!” There’s a revolution on the internet and in indie music, so come along with Makar on its magical musical journey!
MAKAR Influences

The Beatles, Syd Barrett, Grizzly Bear, The Dandy Warhols, Sharon Van Etten, Ting Tings, Arcade Fire, Aretha Franklin, Billie Holiday, Woody and Arlo Guthrie, Belle and Sebastian, Bjork, Blondie, The Runaways, David Bowie, The Carpenters, The Cars, The Clash, Jimi Hendrix, Jaco Pastorius, The Cure, Duke Ellington, Little Richard, Depeche Mode, Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, David Gray, U2, Jerry Lee Lewis, Otis Redding, The Doors, The Smiths, Richie Valens, Roy Orbison, Patsy Cline, Elvis, Portishead, Bessie Smith, Radiohead, Robert Johnson, The Velvet Underground, The Rolling Stones, The Who, T-Rex, The Troggs, Yardbirds, The Violent Femmes, The Sex Pistols, Tricky, Run DMC, LL Cool J, De La Soul, Moby, MIA, Simple Minds, KWS, Sonic Youth, Love, Led Zeppelin, Wings, Nirvana, New Order, Bronski Beat, Joy Division, Percy Sledge, Righteous Brothers, Frank Sinatra, Bill Withers, Janis Joplin and The Monkees.

The Wrecking Crew - Did you know that many of your favorite songs were NOT performed by the members of the bands you love?

The Wrecking Crew   - Did you know that many of your favorite songs were NOT performed by the members of the bands you love?
Lou and Kevin discuss some of their favorite “ghost” musicians and talk about the film that pays homage to them.
Music from Loudini Artists: Bright Curse , Big Boy Bloater  , My Stupid Brother

"The Wrecking Crew" (sometimes called "the Clique" and "the First Call Gang") was a loose-knit circle of Los Angeles' top studio session musicians whose services were constantly in demand during their heyday in the 1960s and early 1970s. In varying configurations, often anonymously, they backed dozens of popular acts on numerous top-selling hits of the era. They are considered one of the most successful session recording units in music history.

The group's ranks began to materialize in the late 1950s, but in the early 1960s they fully coalesced into what became their most recognizable form when they became the de facto house band for Phil Spector, sometimes credited as the Phil Spector Wall of Sound Orchestra, playing on many of the hits that he produced at the time, and contributing to the development of his Wall of Sound production methods. After the initial success of Spector's records, they became the most requested session musicians in Los Angeles, playing behind many popular recording artists such as Jan & Dean, Sonny & Cher, Barry McGuire, the Mamas & the Papas, Frank Sinatra, and Nancy Sinatra. They were sometimes used as "ghost players" on recordings credited to rock groups, such as the first two albums by the Monkees, the Byrds' cover version of Bob Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man" (1965), and the Beach Boys' album Pet Sounds (1966).

Keyboardist Leon Russell and guitarist Glen Campbell later became popular solo acts, while drummer Hal Blaine is reputed to have played on over 140 top ten hits (including approximately forty number one hits).[clarification needed] Other musicians that constituted the unit's ranks were drummer Earl Palmer, saxophonist Steve Douglas, guitarist Tommy Tedesco, and multi-instrumentalist Larry Knechtel (later a member of Bread).

Two of their members, Blaine and Palmer, were among the inaugural "sidemen" inductees to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000, while the entire Wrecking Crew was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame in 2007. In 2008, they were the subject of the documentary The Wrecking Crew.

Birthday Shout Outs:

1936, Born on this day, Roy Orbison singer, songwriter, who had a 1964 UK & US No.1 single with ‘Pretty Woman’ plus over 20 US & 30 UK Top 40 singles. With the Traveling Wilburys he had a 1988 UK No.21 single with ‘Handle With Care’. Orbison died on December 6th 1988.

1955, Born on this day, Ray Burns, (Captain Sensible), The Damned, (1983 UK No.3 single 'Eloise') solo (1982 UK No.1 single 'Happy Talk').

1960, Born on this day, David Gedge, vocals, guitar, The Wedding Present, (UK indie band, during 1992 they released 1 single every month giving them 12 Top 30 hits, making them the only group to score more than 10 new hits in one year).

1960, Born on this day, Steve Clark, guitarist with Def Leppard, who had a 1987 UK No.6 single with ‘Animal’, a 1987 worldwide No.1 album with Hysteria and a 1988 US No.1 single with ‘Love Bites’. Clark died on January 8th 1991, aged 30 after a night of heavy alcohol consumption combined with prescription drugs.

1964, Born on this day, Simon Matthews, drummer with English group Jesus Jones who had the 1990 US No.2 hit with 'Right Here Right Now' and the 1991 UK No.7 single 'International Bright Young Thing'.

1968, Born on this day, Stan Frazier, Sugar Ray, (1999 UK No. 10 single 'Every Morning').

Band Members
Romain "Shaman" Daut
Max Ternebring
Zacharie Mizzi
Short Description
Booking EU: Ephelmusic@hotmail.fr
Booking UK: Brightcurse@gmail.com
Deep, dark, hypnotic and addictive, Bright Curse evolves in the Heavy - Psychedelic scene represented by great bands such as Tool, Witch, Sleep..

Big Boy Bloater  http://www.bigboybloater.com/
“One of the great blues men of our time” Jools Holland, BBC
“Bloater is a phenomenal guitarist!” Mark Lamarr, BBC Radio 2
“I love this guy…he has a voice that sounds like it’s been soaked in turpentine for the last decade!” Craig Charles, BBC 6 Music
“I’m a massive fan of Big Boy Bloater, he’s a charismatic boy with a big voice” Imelda May
“The best R&B guitarist and singer in the UK”  The Blues Magazine
Big Boy Bloater is a guitarist, singer, songwriter, radio presenter and entertainer of the highest order.  His take on roots and R&B has impressed many people within the genre, from the original greats of Blues & roots to modern aficionados.  He is regularly asked to play guitar for legends of R&B, roots and blues and he takes his own band - the Limits - on tours around the globe as well as working his own One Man Show and stepping in as a special guest or session player.  
Bloater has played at many major festivals across the US and Europe, including Latitude, Secret Garden Party, Hop Farm Festival, BluesFest, The Great British R&B Festival, Burnley Blues, Viva Las Vegas and more.  His shows are always impressive, energetic and fun, without losing any musical integrity.  His upbeat songs belie their dark lyrics and intricate arrangements.  His voice has been compared to Howlin' Wolf crossed with Tom Waits – indeed he was a nominee in Male Vocalist of the Year in the UK Blues Awards 2014.  It's a unique show, not to be missed.
He is the presenter of The Blues Magazine Show on Team Rock Radio (the media empire that brings you The Classic Rock Awards) and can be heard worldwide on Saturday and Sunday nights bringing you the best of Blues from the Delta to the modern age as well as exclusive interviews and sessions from the great and good of the blues and roots world.
Bloater has also played for many icons of music and has played guitar behind Imelda May and Paloma Faith and as well as being asked by Sir Paul McCartney to record with him at Abbey Road, he has been interviewed and played sessions on:

Hailing from the tiny mountain town of Ben Lomond just outside of Santa Cruz, CA, the members of MY STUPID BROTHER have been cutting their rock star teeth since 2002, before their voices had even changed. Since then, the pop-punk power trio has matured into a force to be reckoned with. Charged by the friendly sibling rivalry of brothers George and Henry Chadwick(ages 23 and 20, respectively), along with drummer Tyler Raynes(age 21), MY STUPID BROTHER cuts loose on stage, with high-energy, guitar-smashing rock shows that keep audiences engaged and entertained. Their songs are catchy in the vein of Green Day, Weezer, and Blink 182, but have an edge with lyrics and that evoke Kurt Cobain and John Lennon. 
MY STUPID BROTHER has created a buzz within the Santa Cruz and San Francisco Bay Area club scene as well as Los Angeles and Orange County, where the band has turned the heads of top industry professionals. MY STUPID BROTHER took first place out of over fifty bands in Your Music Magazine's 2009 “Your Music Olympicks” Battle Of The Bands. They were voted Best Band of Santa Cruz County. 
Their 2nd CD, What You Need, features guest producers 
Greg Camp (guitarist/songwriter of Smash Mouth) and Tony Sales (bass guitarist/backing vocals from Iggy Pop's Lust for Life and David Bowie's Tin Machine.) 
This band's drive and motivation is key to their success thus far. As the sons of multi gold and platinum audio engineer and producer Daren Chadwick, who worked with recording artists such as Paul McCartney, Chicago, Motley Crüe and The Dead Kennedys, George (guitar/vocals) and Henry (bass/lead vocals) were raised in a studio environment, while prodigy drummer Tyler Raynes grew up in a musical family and has literally been drumming since he could walk. Both George and Henry acted as producers and engineers on the CD, What You Need.
Equipped with a running tour van, MY STUPID BROTHER has maintained a rigorous rehearsal schedule and is stage-ready for shows of all sizes.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Interview with Sit Kitty Sit


The Loudini Rock and Roll Circus Interview Edition
Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini
San Francisco based Hard Piano Rock duo, Sit Kitty Sit, takes the stage. It’s a pretty girl in a cocktail dress and a handsome guy in black jeans.  Simple.  Unassuming. Armed only with piano and drums, this fiery team lets loose an expertly manipulated balance of blow-your-mind power rock and virtuosic intricacy that leaves audiences screaming.

In May of 2010, Kat Downs (Good Natured Mortals/Sparrows Point/Saints of Ruin) and Mike Thompson (Big Nasty/Tokyo Raid/Cougar Kick) teamed up to experiment with the combination of classical piano and rock drumming. Typically described as “The Dresden Dolls mixed with King Crimson and Fiona Apple”, the music they create also reflects evidence of Zeppelin, Beethoven, Rush and Rachmaninoff.  The combination of Kat Downs’ ornate hands and hair flying with Mike Thompson’s flawless percussive mastery makes this duo the consummate definition of a “dream-team”.

“Digging for comparisons, you can find a little bit of everyone
from Nick Cave to Randy Newman, Amanda Palmer to Metallica in their work.
Just simply comparing this band, however, does Sit Kitty Sit a disservice.”
– Nicholas Schneider, The Bay Bridged

Following their 2010 and 2012 releases, “The Push” and “Beautiful/Terrible” respectively, Sit Kitty Sit hit the road and never looked back.  Touring almost non-stop since 2013, the duo has built up a cult-style following all across the United States and have become known for consistently thrilling audiences with their energetically intense live performances. No holds barred, this group produces addictive rock n’ roll – with only two people, and not one guitar in sight.

“They seem to accomplish more with two people than most bands do with five.”
–  Veronica Kirk, Black on the Canvas

2014 unleashed the release of Sit Kitty Sit’s third studio album, “Everlasting Fire”.  Based entirely on Dante’s “Inferno”, this storyline album showcases the extensive versatility of Downs and Thompson as a team.  Spanning seven genres and boasting 15 guest artists, the release shows us an entirely new side of the band while maintaining their identity.   The album has been receiving rave reviews since it’s release.

This year, Sit Kitty Sit was a featured performer at NAMM 2015 as guests of Killer Q Instrument Straps, whose presentation booth went on to win Best In Show. After teaming up with Sleepless Sounds Music Group in Los Angeles, CA to release a new 2015 single and continuing to tour the U.S., Sit Kitty Sit will take the leap over the pond in late October 2015 with their first ever European Tour.   New music and tour dates are always in the works so keep your eyes and ears open in their direction.


Kat Downs is a Musician, Artist, Teacher, Composer and Performer originally from Green Bay, WI.  She began studying music in the 2nd grade continuing on through high school and college earning a BA Degree in Music from St. Norbert College in DePere, WI.  Now based out of San Francisco, CA, Kat’s current projects include the powerhouse Hard Piano Rock duo, Sit Kitty Sit, and the goth rock band, Saints of Ruin. She is the staff composer for Wily West Productions, the Music Consultant for Blue Scorpion Dance Theatre and has an exclusive studio of piano and flute students. Best known for her intense piano playing style and exceptional lyrical compositions, Kat tours nationally and has shared the stage with such names as LP, The Memorials, Chris Wyse, En Esch, Mona Mur, Erica Dilanjian, Shannon Curfman, Lennon, Javier Mosley and WASP.
Mike Thompson is a Drummer, Percussionist, Performer and Arranger hailing from the tiny town containing major talent, Westerly, RI.  He started officially banging on the drums in private lessons at age 10 and went on to star in his award winning high school Jazz, Concert & Marching bands.  He continued feeding his passion for music by studying at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA under drumming greats such as Jamey Haddad, Rod Morgenstein and Kenwood Dennard earning a BA Degree in Music Performance and Business. Having played in bands such as The Big Nasty and Tokyo Raid, Mike has shared the stage with many other bands and artists such as Gary Clark Jr., Pat Travers, Chris Wyse, John Vanderslice and Javie Mosley.  Now living in the CA Bay Area, he is mainly devoting his time with partner, Kat Downs, to touring nationally and garnering more exposure for their powerhouse Hard Piano Rock duo, Sit Kitty Sit.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

The Devaluation of Music… Has Music been Completely Devalued by Today’s Society?

Topic The Devaluation of Music…  Has music been completely devalued by today’s society?
 Lou and Kevin answer this question!

Birthday Shout Outs: 

1924, Born on this day, Rudy Pompilli, saxophonist with Bill Haley and his Comets, 1955 UK & US No.1 single with 'Rock Around the Clock'. Pompilli died on February 5th 1976.

1935, Born on this day, Bobby Vinton, (1963 US No.1 single & 1990 UK No.2 single 'Blue Velvet', plus 29 other US Top 40 hits).

1939, Born on this day, Dusty Springfield, UK singer who had her first UK hit single in 1963 with ‘I Only Want To Be With You’, which reached No.4, a 1966 UK No.1 & US No.4 single with 'You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me’ plus over 15 other UK Top 40 singles. She died on March 3rd 1999.

1947, Born on this day, Gerry Rafferty, UK singer songwriter, Stealers Wheel, (1973 US No.3 & UK No.8 single 'Stuck In The Middle With You', The song was used in Quentin Tarantino's 1992 movie Reservoir Dogs, during the famous "ear" scene.). Solo, (1978 UK No.3 and US No.2 single 'Baker Street.' Member of late 1960's group The Humblebums with Billy Connolly). Died on 4th Jan 2011 at the age of 63 after suffering a long illness.

1949, Born on this day, Boll 'Sputnick' Spooner, guitar, The Tubes, (1977 UK No.28 single 'White Punks On Dope'. 1983 US No.10 single 'She's A Beauty').

1951, Born on this day, John Bentley, bass, Squeeze, (1979 UK No.2 single 'Up The Junction').

1953, Born on this day, PeterGarrett Australian musician, environmentalist, activist. He became the singer with the Australian rock band Midnight Oil in 1973. In 2010, their album Diesel and Dust ranked No.1 in the book The 100 Best Australian Albums.

1964, Born on this day, Dave Pirner, vocals, guitar, Soul Asylum, (1993 US No.5 and UK No.7 single 'Runaway Train').

1971, Born on this day, Selena Quintanilla-P’rez, best known as Selena, Mexican American singer "the queen of Tejano music.’ Her album Selena Live! won a Grammy Award for Best Mexican-American Album at the 36th Grammy Awards. Yolanda Sald’var the president of her fan club, murdered her on March 31, 1995. Warner Brothers made a film based on her life starring Jennifer Lopez in 1997.

Music By Loudini Artists:   Andy Frasco & the U.N.  ,  Bencoolen,  Ash Grunwald  

The Afro Manifesto – 21 things I learned about Life from living in a van.

1.Take Risks. If we only live once, then why not?

2. Fall Hard. So we can learn how to pick ourselves up every time we do.

3. Don’t shoot for the stars. Small victories keep the dream alive.

4. Roll with the punches. Some days there will be traffic jams.

5. Take everything in moderation. Don’t die trying to be the last person “standing” at the party every time.

6. Be broke but enjoy it. Happiness is worth the flat tire.. Because once you have it, everyone will probably want to take it from you.

7. Home is where you make it. Remember there’s always someone looking for company to have dinner with.

8. Fast Food. Don’t do it unless it’s a 4am emergency.

9. Get off your phone and see the view. It’s beautiful outside.

10. Drink Water. That sh*t keeps you alive.

11. Take Detours. Don’t let the paths of others scare you to take the road less traveled.

12. Open Your Eyes. You never know what life changing experience you might have at a gas station.

13. If you want something, go out and get it. How do we know what we want if we don’t know what we don’t want?

14. Don’t sleep on dirty pillows. You’ll get pink eye.

15. Disappointment will make you stronger. Giving up will always be the last nail.

16. Sleep. It’s ok to miss one or two after parties.

17. Hug a stranger. 9 times out of 10 they’ll probably be in need of one. (even Alpha-males)

18. Stay Clean. Nobody likes the smell of 4 day old underwear.

19. Wipe away your tears. Feel what life wants you to feel, but know, there will be another day to get it right.

20. Love Something. What’s the point of collecting all these awesome stories if you don’t have anyone to tell them to?

21. Smile. Because even through all of the up and downs and windy roads, life is still better than the alternate. So let’s appreciate what’s left of it

Imagine a band has driven hours through the night to cram their gigantic sign and gigantic sound into your tiny living room. They have never played in your town. They set up on a stage so small that their bass amp cannot fit on it. The bassist does not admit defeat. He plants his amp right next to your stage and dances on top of it all damn night until you're dancing too. The bass player. 
But you were ready. You built a tiki bar and filled your floors with beach sand. You carried a pool and hot tubs to the stage. You came to party. Maybe you heard a couple soundcloud links, maybe you saw a couple photos. Something told you tonight was going to be different. By the end of the first set you were dancing your asses off, singing with a sweaty frontman to songs you never knew. His glasses were fogged. By the end of the second set the drummer was standing behind his kit, the guitarist was sitting with his feet dangling off the stage almost touching you, and the sax player deftly squealed above it all. 


Bencoolen has played a huge stage opening for Cold War Kids. Bencoolen has closed a street festival stage in Virginia. Bencoolen was in USA Today. That is a boring list of facts. That does not describe the experience. Maybe a little house party does not have the prestige or acoustics of a huge hall, but there are no shortcuts to meeting you. Whether the band plays for 4000 people again or plays for the capacity of your living room... this narrative is why Bencoolen's music has been called maximalist rock.

When R L Burnside released the album Bothered Mind in 2004, teaming up with hip hop producer Lyrics Born, he showed the world that the blues were not just meant to mutate into rock n roll. The sound of the twelve-bar blues emerged in Africa, as did the beats that would give rise to hip hop and when Burnside combined the two, hundreds of years from their point of origin, it would be a marriage of fate that simply made sense. In Australia, at precisely the same moment, a gent of much younger persuasion surrounded naturally by the hip-hop of his generation and as deeply embedded in the blues as those far beyond his years, made the very same discovery. What Ash unintentionally proved with that parallel step, was possession of a foresight generally gifted to those well beyond his years.

Ash Grunwald, put together his first album, Introducing, leaning heavily on traditional blues but it was his second album I Don’t Believe released in April of 2004, that would change his state of play. It was his first album - of many to come - to graft technology onto the deeply rooted foliage of the Delta swamp.
On the back of his increasingly explosive and unique shows, he released a searing live album Live At The Corner; “When I play live, it has that four on the floor, modern pulse that we get from electronic dance music,” he says. His next studio album in 2007, Give Signs, was even more adventurous, and he took his energetic live show to venues such as London’s renowned The Borderline and Shepherds Bush Empire, and opened for acts as diverse a James Brown, Bo Diddley, Keith Urban, Jack Johnson, Missy Higgins & Pete Muray.
In 2008, after collaborating at a song writing workshop with producer Countbounce (Urthboy, TZU), he and Grunwald teamed up to deliver an album of thumping beats and grooves mixed in with blues jams. The result, Fish Out Of Water, was a genre defying record. Although Grunwald had regularly placed beats in his music, it was often simply a mash-up of DIY electronic beats with his blues tracks placed on top. “I wanted to smash the two together really hard, so that you couldn’t tell which side started it first,” Countbounce says. “More of a soul hip-hop approach. The drums would be sampled. And the feel of a hip-hop rhythm section with his guitars on top.”
Blistering live sets on the festival circuit throughout Australia, Japan, Canada,
America, Europe and the UK, have had critics and fans raving about his unique blend of roots, blues, beats and a whole lotta groove for more than a decade. Nominated five times for Australia’s ARIA Awards, and a swag of award wins including MBAS Blues Performer of the Year 2003 and the AIR Best Independent Blues and Roots Album, and in 2009, taking out a prestigious APRA songwriting award for Blues & Roots Song of the Year.
His album of 2010, Hot Mama Vibes, was nominated for Best Blues &
Roots album by both the Australian Record Industry Association and Australian Independent Record Label Association, and after a sold out national Australian tour, he capped off 2010 supporting Jack Johnson’s Australian tour. His first single from the album, ‘Walking’ received significant radio airplay, and was prominently featured in the Hollywood blockbuster, ‘Limitless’ starring Robert De Niro and Bradley Cooper.
On May 11 2012, Ash Grunwald released to the world his most internal album to date. Trouble’s Door, found life in the fiery breath of injustice; the frustration of severe political and environmental mismanagement ‘It's some of my most personal songwriting,’ Ash confesses. ‘I had just done a benefit gig to stop coal seam gas mining.  There were other issues going on at the time, you can take your pick really, and it occurred to me that our system just doesn't work.  We are experiencing the result of rampant unchecked capitalism.’
The music of Trouble’s Door traverses many a tale as well; the blues propelled by driving dancefloor rhythms, buoyed by hip hop beats and slammed by the dubstep crunch. Naturally. The record also featuring the body-shakingly successful single ‘Longtime’ which would end up scoring Ash and his co-writer Colin Reily, an APRA award for Blues and Roots Work of the Year.
At the same time that Ash was picking up that commendation from his industry peers, he was in the middle of a collaboration that would have him (rock n) rolling about inside a whirly wind of commercial interest. He was asked to perform live on Triple M Breakfast in Melbourne, then Sydney…and then on Channel 7’s ratings winning program, The Morning Show. Ash’s immense credibility as a blues musician crossing the rich hearth and stepping into the expansive world of mainstream success, when he combined some undiluted rock n roll, a famous song and some incredible and rather prolific players. Teaming up with Scott Owen and Andy Strachan from The Living End, Ash released a ripping cover of Gnarls Barkley’s ‘Crazy’ (which was meant to serve only as a beacon for Ash’s upcoming national tour) but ‘Crazy’ had a different mind. Developing a life well beyond the borders of a loyal fanbase, Crazy made it’s way out into commercial radio land, and took Ash with it. Within 6 days of his first appearance on Triple M, Ash along with Scott and Andy, had laid down his 7th studio album; the rock monster GARGANTUA was born.
Comprised of two new and original tracks (involving CSG, Arnold Schwarzenegger and a take-no prisioners attitude), three vastly different cover songs and a handful of utterly off the hook reworkings of some of Ash’s biggest tracks, Gargantua documents the findings of an unplanned experiment in altered methodology:
Ash Grunwald + Scott Owen and Andy Strachan = GARGANTUA.
In 2015 Grunwald continues with his commitment to evolve and to doing so with more mindfulness than ever before. Taking off from the same co-creation ethos of Guargantua, Ash brought in Ian Perez keyboardist for Wolfmother and Pete Wilkins, former drummer for Blue King Brown to work on his brand new, forthcoming album NOW. The effortlessly gifted pair built the launch pad for Ash’s detonative sonic boom, enabling him to explore the lose-yourself-sounds of psychedelic blues using synth rather than stringed bass. Keeping it old-school, the gents jammed it out live, forming a wall of sound as abundant in clout as it is in groove.  Standing behind the richness and warmth of the old Neve desk was famed American Record Producer Nick DiDia: who’s philosophy sits firmly in the power of performance and whose name is most commonly strung together in the same sentence as Springsteen’s.  Having worked closely also beside Rage Against The Machine, Pearl Jam, Powderfinger and many other legends, what Nick brought to Ash, above all else, was an intense focus on the structure of a great song.
The result is an album with immense force; strongly political, rumbling from the depths of internal rage. It is sonic thunder that wears all the suffering and the anger of the blues but does not forget for a beat that if you don’t get up sometimes and shake that shit off, if you don’t take a moment to look across the dancefloor and lose yourself in that boy meets girl moment, your heart’ll harden and you’ll lose sight of all the beauty you’re fighting for. NOW is due out in 2015.
Having well and truly conquered his homeland with endless touring resulting in a reputation of not-to-be-missed rocking live shows, Ash has shrunk the world with familiarity, making the entire globe his home. NZ, the UK, sold-out tours in Canada and a pioneering trip of America in 2014 with Xavier Rudd; every show, every tour continuing to feed the ravenous beast of Ash’s unparalleled creativity and his unbridled spirit of diversity.
13 years since the release of that first blues record and hundreds of thousands of arses shaken since, Ash welcomes you as always to strive toward life’s greatest mission amongst the chaos and the challenges – the presence of good times, the energy for action and the possession of a happy heart.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Interview with The Lost Souls of Broadway

For over two decades, Lost Souls On Broadway visionary Mark Sarro has valiantly persevered as a professional in the finicky music industry through intrepid artistic exploration and reinvention. Now, he announces the culmination of his journey with the album Anthems For The Fallen by his new band, Lost Souls On Broadway. Joining him in the studio were none other than producer and Gold Record recording artist Dean Davidson (Britney Fox, Blackeyed Susan), and studio legend Phil Nicolo (John Lennon, The Police, Bob Dylan)..

“We all have people in our lives who are cynical and say things that hold us back. For me, the album title signifies a call to arms for people to get out there and do what they love,” the Philly-based artist reveals.

Mark began his music odyssey in fourth grade playing violin. As a boy, he eyed his father’s trusty Kay acoustic guitar (an instrument he took of possession of years ago and has used to write most of the songs on Anthems), and, by age 13, guitar became his governing passion. Within two weeks of getting his first electric guitar, he was playing in bands. At 17, Mark and his older brother, a drummer, left home for a big time opportunity with a flashy producer. Though that deal went sour, it was the opening volley for him going pro.

Over the next twenty-two years, Mark would make a fulltime living as a musician, traversing touring and studio sideman duties, production projects, orchestral work, and multi-instrumental gigs, including stints singing, playing bass, drums, keyboard, and guitar. His artistic intuition and eclectic tastes have helped him work in a variety of music contexts, including pop, rock, metal, psychedelic, punk, and in avant-garde experimental music. In Lost Souls On Broadway Mark is the songwriter, guitarist, vocalist, and conceptualist. Alongside Mark in Lost Souls On Broadway is his trusted bandmate and creative ally Matt Harrigan. Matt is a seasoned vet who has shared the stage with Cinderella and has been considered for plum sideman work such as playing with Vinnie Moore and Mattson Parry and the Truth.

“Lost Souls On Broadway is the most genuine and honest music I’ve done,” confides Mark. “These songs are raw and emotional.”

Lost Souls On Broadway’s singular aesthetic encompasses rock, blues, jazz, and alternative rock. Within these roiling dynamics, surprisingly, is a boldly vulnerable singer-songwriter approach to lyrics. “Music has always been therapy, it’s what’s kept me alive through life’s disappointments and dark times during my life in music,” reveals Mark.

The 14-track album is thoughtfully sequenced with peaks and valleys to provide the listener with a cathartic musical experience. Highlights in this dynamic album include the stirring title track, “Anthem For The Fallen,” the moody and galvanizing “Pieces,” the biting “Time,” and the spiritually centered acoustic closer, “Open Eyes.” “Anthem For The Fallen” is the album’s emotional centerpiece. Here, Mark boldly sings on the chorus: We are the lost and the brokenhearted, but we can’t be held down! “Pieces” features nimble tribal drumming courtesy of album producer Dean Davidson. “That’s about relationships and moving on when things don’t work out. I wrote it for myself to help me through a painful split, but it could apply to anyone who needs to find the strength to pick up the pieces and move on,” Mark says candidly. The album’s concluding track, “Open Eyes,” is peaceful, and Buddhist-like with its uplifting refrain: “All is one and one is all and all you need to know is you’re not alone…” Of that track, Mark says: “The message there is you’re really not alone at the end of the night, everything and everyone is connected.”

Anthems For The Fallen was recorded, mixed and mastered by Phil Nicolo at Studio 4, Conshohocken, PA. The album was produced by Dean Davidson, who works professionally under the moniker, Americana Bros. In addition to production chores, Dean also contributed drums, backing vocals, and guitar and piano on the title track. Dean has been an artistic inspiration to Mark since he worked with him many years ago. “I remember walking into his house and seeing Gold Records on the wall,” Mark recalls of Dean’s career milestones adorning his residence. “His personality is larger than life, and he’s taught me many valuable lessons in the years I’ve known him.” Incidentally, it was one of Dean’s lyrics that inspired Mark’s band name.

Looking back on the road that led to Lost Souls On Broadway, Mark says: “Everything I’ve done has brought me here, and this is my proudest work—it’s been the most rewarding time of my career. I hope when people listen they relate to it and understand that no matter how hard things get, they always get better. The message is: don’t give up.”

Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Secret to Massive Sucess as a Song Writer that NO ONE will Tell You!

Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini & Kevin O'Connor
Topic: The Secret to Massive Sucess as a Song Writer that NO ONE will Tell You!
Birthday Shout Outs: Carl Perkins, Phillip Wright (vocals, drums, Paper Lace), Mark Kelly (keyboards, Marillion), Gerard Way  (vocals, My Chemical Romance), Albert Hammond Jr (guitar, The Strokes)
Featured Artists Robert DiMaio  , Lance Lopez  , Convoy

Robert DiMaio has released three records under his own name. 10,000sf Candy Store is his latest. Robert has been featured in magazines like, Guitar Player Magazine, 20th Century Guitar and Progressive Music. His music has received praise from the likes of Joe Gastwirt(Mastering Engineer: Jimi Hendrix, Yes and many more), Elliot Randall(Guitar Player for Steely Dan) and other industry insiders as well as countless music lovers. Equally at home on guitar, bass and as a composer, Robert is a compelling musical force full of balance, insight and a bit of magic. Listen for yourselves.

Lance Lopez  http://lancelopeztx.com/
Even just a cursory look will reveal the state’s rich tradition, which easily rivals Chicago and Mississippi for producing players who have been both originators and contributors to the legacy of the guitar’s significant role in the genre’s history. Dating back to the 1920’s with “Blind” Lemon Jefferson, continuing through the 1950’s with such legends as Freddie King, T-Bone Walker and “Lightning” Hopkins, with the advent of the rock era of the 1960’s the pressure cooker exploded.

Albino blues giant Johnny Winter, from Beaumont, in 1968 was signed to what was then the largest advance in the history of the recording industry—$600,000. Houston’s ZZ Top, with the Reverend Willie G, i.e. Billy F. Gibbons – armed with a ’59 Les Paul- during the 70’s went from being “That little ol’ band from Texas” to being world wide ambassadors with their unique brand of deep blues infused boogie rock.

Although disco and subsequently new wave lessened blues rock’s influence in the late 70’s, by 1983 it was another native Texan, Dallas born Stevie Ray Vaughan, whose combination of raw blues mixed with Hendrix styled pyrotechnics spearheaded yet another resurrection as the genre rose its evil head once again. A breath of much needed fresh air amongst the synth heavy offerings on MTV and radio airwaves of the time, the guitarist’s massive influence has extended long beyond his untimely, tragic death twenty years ago.

One such player whom Vaughan touched the soul of was young, gifted blues/rock axeslinger Lance Lopez. Although born in Shreveport, Louisiana, at the age of 12, his family moved to Dallas, where with the exception of a spell back in New Orleans and Southwest Florida, the guitarist has called his home ever since.

A professional musician since the age of 14 when he began playing local bars in and around the New Orleans, Louisiana area, at 17 he was hired by soul great Johnnie Taylor, with whom he toured for six months. By 18 he was hired as the band leader of blues legend Lucky Peterson’s band, spending three years touring throughout the world.

It was while with Peterson in Europe that he struck up a close friendship with the larger than life drummer Buddy Miles, subsequently becoming the guitarist for The Buddy Miles Express for a brief time. The former Band Of Gypsys legend would go on to mentor Lopez, leading to him co producing his debut album ‘First Things First’, along with Grammy winning producer Jay Newland (Norah Jones) which was released independently in 1998.

From 2003 to 2007 Lopez recorded, and released three studio and one live CD for a small independent label, Grooveyard Records – all of which were heavily influenced by another of the guitarist’s main influences – Jimi Hendrix. Despite the hindrance of being released on such a label, the albums are all prime examples of post Hendrix heavy blues, filled to the brim with awe inspiring fretwork, which led to him garnering a cult following amongst guitar fanatics world wide.

After a three year break, Lopez returned with a Jim Gaines (Stevie Ray Vaughan, Buddy Guy, Santana) produced studio album ‘Salvation From Sundown’. Intentionally conceived as a more traditional Texas blues styled offering, it’s the guitarist’s most mature recording to date, showcasing strong songwriting while still retaining the red-hot fretwork which has elicited none other than guitar god Jeff Beck to call him “A very exciting and intense blues guitarist”. His first release on a major label MIG Music/String Commander. In Europe in November 2011 MIG Music released the follow up to ‘Salvation From Sundown’. A very strong Hard Rocking/Blues offering entitled ‘Handmade Music’. ‘Handmade Music’ is full of well crafted songs and Lopez’s signature searing guitar work. Again, Lopez working with Jim Gaines, recorded this entire album in the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis, Tennessee. Ardent was also where Led Zeppelin, ZZ Top, Stevie Ray Vaughan, George Thorogood and others made some of their greatest works. ‘Handmade Music’ shows him poised to take his rightful place as one of the finest blues players on the planet. Texas has its guitar heroes, not least of which is Johnny Winter, Billy Gibbons, and the legendary Stevie Ray Vaughan. And here’s another to add to the list: Lance Lopez.

Convoy  https://www.reverbnation.com/convoy
Convoy is a Chicago based band that plays straight up rock and roll with a distinct melodic influence of blues and southern rock. They are a 20th century swamp rock band. The mixture of their musical style has brought Convoy the recognition of being called “The Kings of Swamp Rock”. 

The band was formed in the fall of 2009 and has been writing, recording and performing live ever since. Convoy consists of versatile seasoned musicians, all which are held with high regard in the local music industry.

Brian Corbin is the singer, rhythm guitarist, and lyric composer of Convoy’s original music. He has exceptional writing abilities which are evident in the lyrics. His passion for original heartfelt rock is clear right when he steps foot on stage. He sings with soulful genuine emotion which the crowd feeds off of.

Mike Getz is the drummer. Mike is the heartbeat of the band. He has extraordinary energy and skills. Once you see him play, you will understand why he has the nickname of “Animal” because he cheers and yells “YYYEEEAAAAAHHHH” at the crowd. It is rare to see someone interact so well with the crowd while rocking the songs.

Martin Bo Jarkski is the bassist and backup vocalist. Martin brings incredible rhythmic unity to Convoy. Even while Martin is grooving on stage or walking through the crowd with his bass during a jam, he keeps a constant link between the harmony and rhythm. Once you hear the pulse of Martin’s bass, you’ll be glad you saw him play live. 

Johnny Daniel is the lead guitarist, backup vocalist, plays harmonica and keyboard. Johnny is a multi-talented musician who is a walking jukebox because he can play all and every genre. His has amazing talent and memorizes the crowd with his catchy, funky, or shredding complex guitar riffs. Johnny also is the mixer and producer of all Convoy albums.

In July of 2010, Convoy released their first album, "River of Sorrow". During live performances, you will hear the crowd singing word by word of many of the tunes. The album brought them recognition throughout venues in the Midwest, Florida and southern US states. They also gained global popularity from being played on online radio stations.

Convoy began recording their second album, “Blue Collar America” in 2011. Convoy took a year recording the album in the unique Rock Lounge studio. The album was released in September 2012 and gained instant popularity.

In early 2015, Convoy began recording album number three which is called, “Back to the Beginning”. The album is not yet released but will soon be available for distribution.

Convoy is not the typical local band. They are top notch, professional musicians who have passion to play good music and a desire to bring the crowd the most enjoyable musical experience possible. Not only do they rock but they support all other local bands in the industry and treat their fans as family. They have played with all levels of bands such as national acts as well as local bands. Convoy has something special and you will feel it once you see them play live.

*All songs on the albums River of Sorrow, Blue Collar America and Back to the Beginning were written and produced by Convoy. 
© Convoy 2010, 2012 and 2015

Interview with The Transmission Party

Band Members
TJ Byrnes - Vocals, Rhythm guitar, Keys
Julien DelTufo - Drums
Eamon Murphy-Saunders - Guitars
Transmission Party, the brainchild of TJ Byrnes, brings to life his musical aspirations with the debut self-titled LP, Transmission Party, released this Fall. With a wide range of influences which range from Blur, Oasis, Arcade Fire, Franz Ferdinand; to the classics such as The Beatles, Beach Boys, David Bowie and Talking Heads, Transmission Party molds his music into a unique listening experience.

A charismatic blend of modern psychedelic music (without the drugs), for fans of bands such as of Montreal and Supergrass, Transmission Party is right up your alley. Each song on the record is skillfully crafted with Byrnes taking over duties on vocals, bass, guitars, keys, percussion, as well as engineer duties; truly a labor of love.

“When constructing a song, I’ve always kept in mind that if each part can be hummed or memorable it should be. I’m not afraid to borrow ideas and musical motifs that recall a certain era or vibe,” states Byrnes. The songs on Transmission Party are inspired by real life, girls, and uncorrected personality traits, which are topics most can relate to at any age.

Staring his musical endeavors at an early age, at 16 Byrnes decided to branch off from his former band, and started writing and recording on his own. Finding sounds he liked and bringing them to life, his music comes from combining different musical textures and experimentation. An accomplished songwriter and musician, Byrnes has shared the stage with Kid Rock, Hellbound Glory, Buckcherry and Southside Johnny and the Poor Fools. Transmission Party is out now.
Get the debut record on iTunes now: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/transmission-party/id1038249567