Thursday, June 30, 2016

The Boss Music Cast

Is the  “The Boss” an overbearing caricature of himself?

Lou and Katie talk about a recent article from Salon magazine about why mellennials hate Springsteen and talk about your opinions from our facebook post about it.  They also give us a sneak of the new release from Alex Vans,  Bad Business Buy American Vol. 1
Featured Loudini Artists: Alex Vans, Henry Chadwick,  and Ed Roman

Alex Vans had a really, really terrible idea for a business. He got a bunch of dudes, gave them instruments, and made them play stoner rock guitar riffs under smooth vocal pop hooks.  He then had the shitty idea to record those sounds onto obsolete physical records and drive around the country in a van trying to sell the records in beer soaked taverns in front of surly bartenders. It was a truly horrible idea.  And predictably, he failed miserably.  If the definition of insanity is repeating the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, then you can count Alex Vans as among the truly mad.  A mad-genius perhaps?  No.  But the new EP does kick ass.

Why? Because Alex and his new band, Bad Business, got back up, licked their wounds, and made a fundamental change.  They realized that if you want to make the kind of top 40 music that lets you retire at 35, you can't write from your heart.  You gotta stick to the formula.  You have to follow the data.  “You think Meghan Trainor makes all that sweet, sweet coin because she’s singing about her feelings?” Vans remarked in a recent interview. “No, she’s got a team of analysts in Korea crunching algorithms faster than Hillary Clinton cashes checks from Goldman Sachs.” In that defiant spirit, they ditched their flannel shirts and skinny jeans in favor of power suits and suspenders.  They dropped their guitars and picked up their expo markers and whiteboards.  Then they realized how not fun that is, grabbed their guitars again, ditched the formula, and cranked out the most righteously rocking EP of 2016.  “Buy American: Vol. 1” is the result of this truly revolutionary paradigm shift.  

Sure, it's all a bit tongue-in-cheek, but that doesn't cheapen the bite of songs like "Velocirapture (Clever Girl Version)," which barrels ahead with all the speed and ferocity of a of a T-Rex chasing down Jeff Goldblum, and "Break My Spell," where Vans screams his frustration in a raw, ragged howl.  Recorded over the course of a year in D.C. and Brooklyn, the self-produced Buy American: Vol. 1 nods to stoner-rock influences like Queens of the Stone Age and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. Andy Valenti, Mike Douaire, Erik Estrada, John Daise, and Adam Ashforth all pitched in, creating an EP of pure, punchy rock & roll that never takes itself too seriously. Rest assured: fans of past Alex Vans albums like DJ Booth will still find plenty of familiar appeal here, from Vans' melodic instincts to his work as an explosive lead guitarist. If those past albums were failed businesses, though, then Buy American is something new: bright, bold, and ready for the boardroom.

Where to begin? Things have been happening. All kinds of things. Things you wouldn't believe, and some things you would believe. Believe it or not, all of them are true. Truly.

Guest At Home EP

I suppose I should start with the update on my new EP. I released my first single last month, "Alright", and people are actually listening to it. Not to "toot my own horn" as they say in the business, but as I'm writing this it has over 20k streams on Soundcloud and almost 30k Spotify plays. That is, as they say in the business, pretty cool. I'm choosing to assume that means people are enjoying it. If you have listened to it and/or are listening to it now and/or are about to listen to it I thank you sincerely. 

I put a music video out for "Alright" as well, which I'm proud of and i believe to be a humorous and compelling piece of musical cinema. Thanks to the kind and talented folks at Element Productions here in Santa Cruz for their excellent work. This ain't the first time we've worked together. The kind and talented folks at Element Productions used to be the kind and talented folks at 3 Cameras Later productions and we worked on 2 videos for my old band My Stupid Brother, "She's A Freak" and "Robot Song", both of which are youtubeable. My how the time flies, how the people grow, how the flowers bloom, how the leaves fall and then we're right back at it if you know what I mean...I'm not sure i do.

My 2nd single and title track, "Guest At Home" premiered at the Huffington Post and again at Paste Magazine along with an interview. I have grown both fond and proud of this track and I'm happy it's out there in the world ready for the likes of your ears to listen to and hopefully enjoy.

I, along with the scraggly bunch of rock n' roll stallions who are known as Battlesnake, recently strapped on our respective instruments, plugged in to our respective amps, smacked our respective drum set and crooned into our respective microphones at an exclusive, local EP release show at Moe's Alley in Santa Cruz on Sunday, May 8th. The people that showed up got a copy of the EP before it will be available elsewhere a little later on. Thanks to all who came and made the night what we call in the business, a very good time.

In other news...

I spent some time with the Coffis Brothers, the band in which I drum, in an amazing studio in LA called Barefoot Recording. We were joined by our long time producer extraordinaire Andy Zenczak, and engineer wizard Cian Riordan. We spent a week tracking 17 songs (we'll see if all of them wind up on the album,) mostly live and to tape. It was a truly unforgettable trip and experience. The recordings are sounding, as they say in the business, very good. 

More to come on all fronts. 

Until then, stay classy... and thanks for stopping by... But mainly stay classy.


Ed Roman is an Award-winning singer/songwriter, performer and multi-instrumentalist from Shelburne, Ontario, Canada.  Blurring the lines between pop, rock, folk, and country music genres, Ed’s uniquely crafted songs have received regular rotation on more than 100 terrestrial radio stations across North America and more than 400 stations, worldwide.  Ed is a 2014 Artists Music Guild Award Nominee, a 2014 International Music and Entertainment Association Award Winner, a two-time 2015 IMEA Award nominee, a 2015 and 2016 Josie Show Awards nominee, an Akademia Awards Winner, and a two-time Indie Music Channel Award winner. Ed has performed at the Red Gorilla Music Fest during SXSW, The Millennium Music Conference, and SS Cape May, and he has toured both New York City and Philly. Recently, this Top 100 and #1 Reverbnation artist traveled to Jamaica to deliver much-needed humanitarian aid to the island, while shooting the music video for “Jamaica.” Ed is also a Heart Songs for Veterans artist, donating money to help veterans with his single and Top 10 video,, “Lay One Down.” His last album, Letters From High Latitudes (an homage to his Ontario home) was a critically-acclaimed vehicle for Ed’s socio-political, earthly-conscious and globally-aware messages.  This earthy, funky and magical mix of music has earned Ed Roman airplay chart recognition and won over legions of fans around the world, known as “Ed Heads.” Now, Ed has returned with a brand new album, Red Omen, produced with renowned producer, Michael Jack.  The album, featuring the first single and video, I Am Love, is out June 7, 2016.  

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Loudini Interviews Henry Chadwick

As I have been gearing up for a Spring release of my new EP, Guest At Home, starting something new with The Coffis Brothers, and being involved in various stages of production on other people's projects, I've started feeling a little bit like Old MacDonald....

If you'll allow me this in depth analogy to explain...

You see, being involved in the creation of music or art is a lot like being a farmer —  I should clarify that I have no idea what it's like to be a farmer as I've never farmed before... I Imagine it's pretty physically taxing and you have to wake up very early everyday, which is not always the case as a musician/artist — Regardless, for the sake of my analogy, let's pretend I  know what I'm talking about.

Planting the seed:

Much like a farmer plants a seed, the artist must have a vision or idea. Whether it's an idea for a song, a plan for a tour, or the fledgeling stages of clay a sculpture — I also have no clue what the process of sculpting is like, I just thought I should throw in some other type of art form, — the artist must plant a seed within his or her brain.

Watering the Garden:

The artist then, much as the farmer water's their garden, must water their brain. Here's where it get's tricky though — the artist doesn't need to use actual water to water their brain.. actually that's not entirely true.. It's important to stay hydrated.. but there is more!

The songwriting "farmer"  must water their song with thought, musicians, arrangements, studio time, CD production and/or online distribution, and last but certainly not least, practice for live shows. 

If it's a seed that one wishes to grow into a beautiful show or tour, the show planning "farmer" must water his or her crops by sending out numerous emails regularly and planning/clearing their schedule accordingly.

 A sculpting "farmer" must water their creation by adding more clay I assume.

Fruits of Labor:

This is what it's all about folks. The fruits of the labor. It's a labor of love and we love them fruits. Just as a farmer enjoys the fruits of his/her labor, the artist enjoys their art. In an ideal situation, just as the farmer sells their food, the artist makes something the rest of the world can enjoy.

The music farmer has created a wonderful recording that exists in a place that's accessible to the public. And the show seeds they planted in January have sprouted into beautiful season full of festival shows that bloom all summer and beyond. 

The sculpting farmer now has a sculpture of some kind.

So you see? We're all farmers really... pushing our ploughs along through this crazy field we call life...

And with that, I'll say goodbye until next time.


Loudini Interviews BenCoolen

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.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Loudini Interviews Guy King

Bluesman Guy King has a somewhat different life story than T-Bone Walker, Ray Charles, Louis Armstrong and the other African-American musical legends he grew up revering.
For King was born and raised in Israel, inexorably gravitating to the city that helped electrify the blues in the mid-20th century and nurtured jazz long before that: Chicago.

So when the singer-guitarist headlines the fourth annual Israeli Jazz & World Music Festival, which runs Thursday through June 2, his personal narrative will reflect the nature and purpose of this remarkable event — to show the deep (though not obvious) links between roots music made in America and its offshoots on the other side of the world.
For Israel long has been a cauldron of new sounds inspired by American music, and King came under the spell of these faraway idioms as a child.

"I remember, my parents would have the radio on, and sometimes my father would play Louis Armstrong … sometimes something like Ray Charles would come on," remembers King, who performs shows May 31 at the Chicago Cultural Center and Andy's Jazz Club under the auspices of the fest.

"Then somebody showed me 'Blues Power' by Albert King," adds Guy King (no relation), referring to the influential "Live Wire/Blues Power" album. "And it hit me like a brick. It was a horn section playing for him. He was bending notes. He was pure. He was raw and orchestrated. And he really moved me."

So much so that after a brief North American tour with a vocal group when he was 16, Guy King vowed to move to the States and did so after completing compulsory military duty in Israel in 1999, at age 21.

"Twelve days after the service, I took the guitar and the suitcase, and I went to Memphis, because B.B. King and Albert King started there," explains King, who a couple of months later ventured to New Orleans for a few weeks before arriving in Chicago.

At the time, "I was not familiar with Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Howlin' Wolf," adds King, referring to icons of Chicago blues.
"Here in Chicago, I was by myself. When you're alone, things sink in. I picked up a boxed set of Ray Charles. This is not just blues; it has some elements of jazz.

"I started exploring. He talked about how much he loved Charlie Parker, and I got into Charlie Parker."

Within a year, King was playing in a band led by bassist Willie Kent, who famously had collaborated with Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and other stars. In effect, King was learning at the foot of the master, playing with him until Kent's death in 2006, at age 70.

The result of that tenure and the years that followed is a musician who mixes Chicago blues with aspects of jazz, soul and more in his new album, "Truth" (Delmark Records). Energetic, muscular and staffed by some of Chicago's finest jazz musicians — including trumpeter Marques Carroll and saxophonist Brent Griffin Jr. — the recording shows how seriously King has immersed himself in the sounds of his adopted city.

"He does play a very American style of blues, with a hint of R&B or soul," says Kevin Fine, who programmed the Israeli Jazz & World Music Festival as director of cultural affairs for the Consulate General of Israel to the Midwest.

In so doing, King epitomizes the festival's mission of "spreading Israeli music and culture through a city that is so centered around music," adds Fine, who also happens to be a drummer who graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign last year.

And though some Chicagoans may regard Israel as a remote and somewhat mysterious place, Fine believes its parallels to the United States are worth celebrating.

"Israel is similar to the U.S. because it has so many immigrants from so many countries, and it really has become a melting pot for culture on all levels," says Fine. "Jazz and blues go hand in hand with both of our societies really well."

Certainly the steadily growing popularity of the Israeli Jazz & World Music Festival, which has drawn large crowds to every event I've attended over the years, suggests that Chicago audiences have valued the opportunity to hear musicians who came of age in the Middle East. This year, the itinerary will feature Israeli blues musician Lazer Lloyd collaborating with Chicago instrumentalists Thursday at Buddy Guy's Legends and Sunday at FitzGerald's in Berwyn; the jazz-rock sounds of Chicago-based Marbin Saturday at Andy's Jazz Club; Israeli saxophonist Uri Gurvich, who now lives in New York and records on John Zorn's Tzadik label, Monday at Andy's Jazz Club; Guy King on May 31 at the Chicago Cultural Center and Andy's Jazz Club; Tal Gamlieli, a Jerusalem-based bassist, leading a trio June 1 at SPACE in Evanston; and Yemen Blues, a band that weaves Middle Eastern musical traditions with global sounds, June 2 at the Old Town School of Folk Music.

These far-flung musical genres have more in common than one might think, says King, who began touring extensively in 2012 but refocused his activities in Chicago last year.

"If you really think about it, every ethnic music, every folk music — from whatever place — is the blues, will have that touch," he says.

"Ethnic music is simple music. You can add and embellish some colors, make it more beautiful, less beautiful. The feeling of the music is not that different if you are in Brazil, if you are in Africa, if you are in Chicago or in Israel. There's a raw feeling of music.

"That raw element is like the heart. The beat is the same. Maybe the accent will be different. … The raw feeling is the same."

That's a message the Israeli Jazz & World Music Festival aspires to convey, and it's one that we'll be hearing for the next several days.

Guy King plays 6:30 p.m. May 31 at the Chicago Cultural Center's Preston Bradley Hall, 78 E. Washington St.; free. Also 9:30 p.m. Tuesday at Andy's Jazz Club, 11 E. Hubbard St.; $10, but free with ticket from the first concert; 312-642-6805 or For the festival's complete schedule, visit

Howard Reich is a Tribune critic.
Twitter @howardreich

Monday, June 20, 2016

Loudini Interviews FROOMADOR

Combining an acoustic sound with the electrical pulse of Indie Rock, Froomador’s unique songwriting approach leaves room for the listener’s own interpretation. His latest album, “Can’t This Wait” includes the single “Solar Energy” for which there is a climatic music video that has been filmed in the Arizona desert, and has just been released in early 2016.

Orlando native Ryan Froom credits his passion for music to his father whom he watched simultaneously play the guitar and sing at church during his early childhood. By the age of 10 he had his first guitar and was 12 years old when he wrote his first song. His father introduced him to the “The Doobie Brothers”, “Beach Boys”, and “The Beatles” during his early teens in which Ryan also began to sensationalize the sport of surfing. Heavily influenced by the beachy tunes, Ryan acquired a palate for the soothing sounds of the ukulele, and began to incorporate them into his songs. During his early high school days, he recalls sneaking into his older brother’s melancholy record collection and discovering the sound of “The Cure”, “The Smiths”, and “Nirvana”. It was then that Ryan also began to incorporate the electric guitar into his songwriting sessions.

At the age of 23, Ryan moved to Argentina and would spend the next eight months learning Spanish and being surrounded by Latin Jazz and Flamenco. By the age of 24, he lived a few months in Brazil where he would also learn to speak Portuguese and develop an interest in Brazilian samba and the sassy Latin tunes, inspiring him to write and record his album “Pavement Ends” several years later. In 2009, he enrolled in the prestigious school of music “Berklee” in Boston where he would focus on Jazz Composition and classical arrangements for the next year and a half.

Froomador has performed live in several cities including Hollywood and Claremont, CA, Washington D.C., and countless venues in his hometown Orlando, FL, where he currently resides. Along with the release of his album “Can’t This Wait”, his performance schedule will also be announced.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Albany Down The Outer Reach

The Loudini Rock and Roll Circus Music Podcast
Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini & Katie Simone
Featured Album: Albany Down The Outer Reach

Lou and Katie discuss and play some samples from the new album London Rockers Albany Down. Featured artists are Albany Down,  Typhoid Rosie , and Dead27s

Albany Down
London-based Albany Down are a contemporary rock band with influences ranging from classic acts like Led Zeppelin and Thunder to modern bands such as The Black Keys and Clutch.  They combine a vintage rock-blues sensitivity with a contemporary aggressive energy.

Albany Down are Paul Muir on vocals, guitarist Paul Turley, drummer Donna Peters and bassist Billy Dedman and they have already recorded two albums with award-winning producer Greg Haver (Manic Street Preachers, INME, Super Furry Animals).

“These guys are really going somewhere; make sure they take you with them!" – Paul Jones, BBC Radio 2

The band is a hard-working, road-tested outfit, which has been well received at various UK festivals including the Maryport International Rock and Blues Festival; The Great British Rhythm and Blues Festival (Colne); and The Great British Rock and Blues Festival (Skegness); as well as at venues like Barfly Camden and the legendary 100 Club.

In 2014, they toured the UK supporting New Jersey’s Southside Johnny and The Asbury Jukes, which included the highlight of their year when they played at the O2 Shepherds Bush Empire.  This was followed by appearances at festivals in Belgium and the Netherlands before a very successful tour of Germany with The Brew.

Blues Rock Review offered a fair assessment of both the band and their 2011 debut album: “South of the City” is a solid debut album from Albany Down and they will be an interesting band to watch develop in the coming years”.  The album clearly showcased what the band are capable of – ranging from the superbly arranged “Mercy” to the low-down dirty, slide-led blues epic of the title track.

Their formidable second album, “Not Over Yet”, released in 2013, is full of their strongest songs, lingering melodies and great musicianship.  And where vocalist Paul Muir could previously have been compared to the likes of Paul Rodgers, he stamps his own personality on this album, while guitarist Paul Turley produces a virtuoso impassioned performance.  Traditionally a band’s second album is regarded as being problematical but Albany Down turned that notion on its head.

Their live show never disappoints.  The band run on pure adrenalin, unrelenting energy and raw emotion and soon have any crowd entranced.  The music is based on thunderous guitar riffs and pounding drums juxtaposed with soulful, soaring, emotionally-charged ballads.

Rock blogger Neil Mach probably got it right, when he recently described the band; “As hot as volcanic ash and yet as cool as snow slippers.”

“Not Over Yet” is an aptly titled album and an accurate barometer of a band on the up-escalator currently tearing up venues around the UK and Europe.  Having already generated over 7,500 Facebook fans, the band are due to start work on their third studio album in 2015. 

Both Albany Down albums, “South of The City” (2011) and “Not Over Yet” (2013) are available for download on iTunes and Amazon.

“Albany Down is the new voice of British rock music.  A blend of contemporary rock and blues – with added brilliance on top.  See for yourself.”

Typhoid Rosie



On their first-ever attempt at writing together, Dead 27s came up with a batch of songs that perfectly embody the Charleston-based band’s powerfully charged blend of rock-and-soul. Sprung from an all-night songwriting session on the coast of South Carolina, several of those songs made their way onto Dead 27s’ acclaimed debut EP Chase Your Devils Down. With the rest of the tracks set to appear on the band’s first full-length album (due out this year), Dead 27s have brought a sharp sense of songcraft to the loose but potent musicality that’s propelled the band since the first time they shared a stage.

The earliest incarnation of the band came to life in spring 2012, when Francis, Mullinax, Evans and Goldstein teamed up for a set at a local festival. Although the four had never played together, they instantly felt an undeniable chemistry that turned what was meant to be a one-time collaboration into a series of shows and—once Crider joined the lineup—the eventual founding of the band. Seeking a name for the event, the band began to brainstorm ideas and decided to pay homage to the dead 27s, a group of musicians known for leaving an indelible mark on American music. The name stuck more for the appreciation of pushing musical boundaries and leaving nothing on the table at live shows, than a direct mirroring of any of the 27s club members sound.
In the music of Dead 27s, a mutual appreciation for early American blues (Johnson), psychedelic rock-and-roll (Hendrix), punk-minded modern rock (Cobain), and painfully charged soul (Winehouse) merges with a shared passion for pushing into new sonic terrain. In the making of Chase Your Devils Down, that meant forging a groove-powered sound that’s gutsy and urgent but graced with a sophisticated lyrical sensibility. “One of our goals is to take people on a ride,” says Francis of Dead 27s’ ever-shifting dynamic. “We wanna smack you in the face with some heavy guitar, then take it down with something quieter and softer and much more intimate.”

The emotional element of Chase Your Devils Down also proves complexly textured, with Dead 27s exploring themes of overcoming struggle in love and everyday living. “All the songs are based on the idea that no matter what life throws at you—whether it’s in your job, your relationships, or just struggles you may have internally—you’ve got to take what you can from the experience, and don’t let it get the best of you,” Francis says.

Released in spring 2014, Chase Your Devils Down earned Dead 27s the Charleston City Paper Music Awards’ Song of the Year prize two years in a row, thanks to the breezy heart-on-sleeve R&B of “Don’t Want to Live My Life Without You” and the riff-driven swagger of “Don’t Comfort Me.” Since the EP’s release, Dead 27s have also found themselves ranked in the top 24 of VH1’s “Make a Band Famous” competition and touring with the likes of Galactic, The Revivalists, Earphunk, Marcus King Band and Tab Benoit.
For Dead 27s—who’ve fast gained a reputation as an incendiary live act—each show serves as a breeding ground for creativity and a vessel for sonic expansion. Fueled by their unabashed belief in delivering a kinetic, thrillingly unpredictable set night after night, the band revels in the transcendent imperfection that comes from fully immersing themselves in the moment. And more often than not, says Mullinax, those beautiful mistakes help guide the band to their next creative breakthrough. “Playing a song live takes it out of the vacuum of the practice room, and provides a connection with an audience that informs how the song will be used in the future,” he points out.

With their following on the rise and the band supporting bigger acts and performing at larger festivals (including FloydFest this July), Dead 27s’ love of playing live ultimately connected them with Ben Ellman, the Grammy nominated New Orleans-based producer and member of the funk/rock act Galactic. Ellman was enlisted as producer on their forthcoming full-length debut and—in creating the album—dedicated themselves to capturing the raw, untamable energy of their live show. “With the new record, the one thing we knew for a fact was we didn’t want to make it all shiny-clean—we wanted big guitars, big drums, a whole spectrum of feeling,” notes Evans. The album also finds Dead 27s further broadening their sound by diving deeper into merging elements of psych-rock, throwback-soul and fuzz-funk. “One of the coolest things about this band is we always want to evolve, try new things, go in new directions we haven’t tried before,” says Mullinax. “It’s what keeps the music fresh, and what keeps the whole experience exciting for everyone involved.”

Critics are saying...

"Anyone who claims that rock and soul ain’t what it used to be clearly hasn’t heard of these stunning musicians. This will remind you of soul and blues from the late 60’s – with rock from the early 70’s. But probably the most compelling quality of the Dead 27s is how seamlessly they stay true to the pure, old school rock and soul sounds while making their music cutting edge relevant to today’s listeners."  
JamSphere - 2015

"...Creative and timeless music with impassioned veracity...a refreshing blend of song-craft and musicianship..."
Terry Adams, Charleston Magazine, May 2014  

"I want to hear it in an American-made car, with the top down, tearing down the's something special...a no frills straight forward rock and soul album that showcases the talents of one of Charleston's best live bands"
Devin Grant, Charleston Grit, May 2014

"...the album incorporates some delicious musical influences with a fresh approach that leaves you wanting more and hitting the replay button often."
Robert Loughry, Bright Lights Big City Talent Management, May 2014

"(Don't Want To Live My Life WIthout You)...comes off like a perfect hit — it’s catchy and infectious, yet so guilt-free that it could only be created by a band who bows down at the altar of Hendrix, but isn’t afraid to write a pop song a la Mayer Hawthorne."
Stratton Lawrence, Charleston City Paper, March 06, 2013

"Dead 27s are developing their own sound, and they credit their own relaxed attitude, the ease with which they jam with each other, and the addition of the talented Trey Francis as major factors in shaping their latest original material."
Jared Booth, Charleston City Paper, August 01, 2012
Birthday Shout Outs for June 18
1942, Born on this day, Paul McCartney, The Beatles Wings, solo. The most successful rock composer of all time. McCartney first met John Lennon on July 6th 1957, who was impressed that Paul could tune a guitar. With The Beatles he scored 21 US No.1 & 17 UK No.1 singles plus McCartney has scored over 30 US & UK solo Top 40 hit singles. He has written and co-written 188 charted records, of which 91 reached the Top 10 and 33 made it to No.1 totalling 1,662 weeks on the chart.
1942, Born on this day, Carl Radle, bass, Derek and the Dominoes, (1972 UK No.7 single 'Layla'). Died of kidney failure June 30th 1980, aged 38. Also worked with George Harrison and Delaney And Bonnie.
1942, Born on this day, Richard Perry, US producer. Member of The Legends during the 60's. Worked with Carly Simon, Barbra Streisand, Ringo Starr, Captain Beefheart, Leo Sayer, Diana Ross, The Pointer Sisters.
1952, Born on this day, Ricky Gazda, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, (1978 album 'Hearts Of Stone').
1953, Born on this day, Jerome Smith, guitarist, KC and the Sunshine Band, (1975 US No.1 single 'Get Down Tonight', 1983 UK No.1 single 'Give It Up'). He died on August 2nd 2000 after being crushed by a bulldozer he was operating.
1961, Born on this day, Alison Moyet, singer, Yazoo, (1982 UK No.2 single 'Only You'). Solo (1985 UK No.2 single 'That Ole Devil Called Love').

1963, Born on this day, Dizzy Reed, keyboards, Guns N' Roses, toured and recorded since 1990.
1969, Born on this day, Simon Rowbottom, guitarist, The Boo Radleys, (1995 UK No.9 single 'Wake Up Boo').
1971, Born on this day, Nathan Morris, Boyz II Men, (1992 US & UK No.1 single 'End Of The Road').
1973, Born on this day, Gary Stringer, vocals, Reef, (1996 UK No. 6 single ‘Place Your Hands’, 1997 UK No.1 album ‘Glow).
1976, Born on this day, Blake Shelton, American country music singer and television personality. Blake Shelton has charted over 20 country singles, including 11 No.1's. He is the husband of country singer Miranda Lambert.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Loudini Interviews Blind Lemon Pledge

Releasing March 4 2016, “Pledge Drive” highlights the mastery of disparate musical styles and compelling lyrics that Blind Lemon Pledge (aka James Byfield) brings to his surprising combination of songs and sounds. Says Pledge “The studio is my canvas and the music is my paint. This album gave me a chance to explore some of the harder edged songs in my repertoire. Sometimes, I guess I’m a rocker at heart.” Employing compelling percussion, electric guitars, keyboards, harmonica, saxophone and driving bass, Blind Lemon Pledge has fashioned 12 songs that propel the listener on a toe-tapping journey through American music.

The album opens with ‘Run John Run’ which uses the famous Bo Diddley beat to tell the story of the infamous Night Riders in the post-bellum South. Says Pledge, “I always wanted to write a song using Bo’s beat. Bo has always been one of my music heroes, and I needed to find the right theme for the music. After watching the Poitier/Belafonte Western “Buck and the Preacher,” I had the sudden inspiration for something that would fit the drive of the beat.” The track is anchored with a dense percussive sound reminiscent of New Orleans and the Caribbean, and features a driving bass and single guitar.

‘Moon Madness,’ the second track, shifts gears into a down and dirty blues about a stalker, using a 7th chord phrasing that gives it a minor and spooky quality. For this track, Pledge uses a raspy, guttural tone that creates a character to match the theme of the song. “I first developed this voice and character back in High School. After trying a couple of takes, I realized the character would be perfect for the song.” Accompanying him on this song is harmonica whiz Jenny Reed, who has some impressive creds of her own, including appearances on the TV shows “Fame” and “Cagney and Lacey”. Says Pledge, “Although I play harp myself, I decided I needed someone who could really pull out all the stops. And Jenny was just that musician.”

‘Nag Nag Nag’ pushes the album into overdrive with a saxophone-driven R&B romp reminiscent of a cross between Louie Jordan and Allen Toussaint. Oldies specialist Rick LeCompte is the featured saxophone player on this track, while BLP created the backing sax, trombone and trumpet tracks in the studio. Says Pledge, “On my last album, I had a track that could have really used some horns. This time around I decided to go for it. Rick is one of my oldest friends and I was glad I could get him to add his talents to the mix.” ‘Cora Lee’ brings a sad and melancholy air to the proceedings with a plaintive cry of lost love. Pledge combines a mixture of acoustic percussion including a cajon on the verses with a more traditional trap set on the bridge. The solo is taken by a flute, adding yet another layer to the BLP sound.

The album shifts gears yet again with the complex tempos of ‘Birmingham Walk,’ a densely harmonic, distinctly Southern riff on the Civil Rights Movement. With a nod to the rhythms of Little Feat, BLP explores themes of protest, rectification and Jim Crow laws, all within the bounds of a classic 3+ minute song. A driving dual guitar accompaniment adds urgency to the lyrics. Next up is the second saxophone riff on ‘5 Weeks of Heaven,’ a classic rocker that will remind the listener of Bobby Keyes era Rolling Stones songs. Anchored by a compelling guitar riff and powered by the sax, this song drives relentlessly forward. “An old friend of mine once described a love affair he had as ‘five weeks of heaven.’ Being the shameless songwriter that I am, I appropriated the line for this song,” Pledge jokes.

Jenny Reed’s fine harp playing returns for ‘She Broke the Ten Commandments,’ a dark song of heartbreak, with odd religious overtones. The rhythm riff is driven by BLP’s critically acclaimed slide guitar work, recalling an electrified version of a Son House riff. Once again BLP employs a variation on his alternate voice, lending an almost AC/DC sound to the song.

The second third of the album is bookended with another soft and mellow blues song, whose structure brings to mind the blues/country recordings of Ray Charles. ‘You Can’t Get There From Here’ features electric piano, bass, drums and acoustic guitar showcased in a smoky jazz arrangement.

The last third of the album begins with ‘O Katrina,’ a slide guitar driven take on the destructive hurricane of ten years ago. Written from the point of view of someone who decides to ride the hurricane out, ‘O Katrina’ is a mini-drama about the choices and risks that so many of the survivors were subjected to in that devastation. Solid electric guitar and percussion help bring this vision to life.

‘You Know You Really Got the Blues’ was originally inspired by the jazz-based blues of the earliest years, such as Bessie Smith and Ma Rainey. Says Pledge, “I love the chordal structure of those songs as well as the word play and ideas. Although the accompaniment doesn’t actually sound like that era, that’s where I got the idea for the music.” This song features a good selection of BLP’s impressive slide guitar playing. ‘Kokomo’ pulls out all the stops to move the album to yet another style, this one perhaps unique to the Blind Lemon Pledge vision. A succinctly told story about office rage and gun control, ‘Kokomo’ uses a unique repeating chord pattern over a series of short verses that drive the story forward. The solo combines two slide guitars and a honking organ to create a jarring comment on the tragic events in the song.

The album finishes with the BLP classic ‘Railroad Mama.’ Going back to his jug band and country blues roots, Blind Lemon Pledge uses washtub bass, rhythm spoons and washboard, banjo and harmonica to recreate the old fashioned sound of the Memphis jug bands, he loves so much. “I have recorded this track a couple of times in the past, and this time I think I finally got it right. I wanted to end the album with a surprise track, no one would be expecting.” The inclusion of the jug band tune highlights the diversity of styles that have been featured throughout the album.

With a signature diversity of styles, expertly crafted lyrics, and a panoply of musical sounds, Blind Lemon Pledge has created another masterpiece of Blues and Americana. Hop on aboard and let “Pledge Drive” take you on a musical journey.

Loudini Interviews Highway 50s Al Laughlin

Band Members
Al Laughlin,Chris Wright James Hambleton Scott Higgins ,Andrew Mcnew ,Matt Planer,Sarah Mount,Jeep Macnichol,Brian Nevin, Raoul Rossiter, Daren Roebuck
Highway 50 is the brainchild of Al Laughlin, original member of the Colorado band, The Samples. Laughlin wrote or co-wrote many of the band’s most enduring songs and his percussive off-beat reggae stylings on keyboards became known as “the bubble” that helped form the band’s signature sound.

Highway 50 continues in that tradition blending ska, reggae, jazz, pop and R&B with Laughlin’s melodic vocals and introspective lyrics. The band’s lineup includes guitarist James Hambleton, drummers Jeep MacNichol (also formally of The Samples), Brian Nevin (of Big Head Todd and the Monsters), and Sam Young; horn players Andrew McNew, Matt Planer, Rick Demey, and Kyle Etges, and bassists Chris Wright and Tony Soto.

Their latest CD, Highway 50, contains 16 songs and is available now on Amazon, Spotify, I tunes, and CD baby. The band is also working on their second CD, which will feature Jeep MacNichol And Brian Nevin, due out soon. The band’s following continues to grow in Colorado and beyond and big things are up ahead in 2016…

Friday, June 10, 2016

Loudini Reviews Hotel California

The Loudini Rock and Roll Circus Music Podcast
Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini & Katie Simone
Featured album: Hotel California
Lou and Katie discuss the classic album Hotel California by the Eagles and tell some little known facts about it. Featured Loudini Artists: Victory Dance,  The Junior League,  Save the World

At its core, Victory Dance is the “give no shits” attitude of 5 guys who just play great music. And though the band is newly formed (September 2015), there’s no shortage of history. The Dance started when 3/5ths of pop act Fancy Reagan (Republic Records/Universal Music Group) sought out Kenny Collette, known for his work in Franchise and Lady Radiator (Emerald Moon Records), and Are Jay Helton of The Day Of (Warner Curb/Word Ent.) to start a more alternative project that would drive down a lane they were really passionate about.

While in Fancy Reagan, Jason Krebs, Bobby Kay, and Chris Tsaganeas, enjoyed a variety of rapid successes. In less than a year from forming, they were featured in the Huffington Post, took first place over 3500 bands on VH1’s Make a Band Famous, signed a major label record deal, opened for such notable acts as The Roots and Bleachers, and had their music placed in a variety of outlets including NCAA March Madness tv commercials, the opening for The 2015 ESPY Awards Show, and in many Major League Baseball stadiums.

Before fronting Victory Dance, Kenny was an unstoppable force right out of the gate. At 17, he signed with independent label Infidel Records, and later with Emerald Moon and Hotfoot Records as the lead singer and front man of Lady Radiator. He toured the country on Warped Tour and Bamboozle, as well as on his own. Are Jay landed two European tours and a US tour as the guitarist for Stereo Radio.

The collaboration of these backgrounds is the pulse of Victory Dance. Taking their proven strengths as pop songwriters and fusing with a much more alternative edge has led to an infectious and unpredictable catalogue. The live show spans from undeniable pop ear-worms like the debut single, “Two of Us”, to guitar driven fight anthems like “Memphis”. Drawing comparisons to juggernauts Imagine Dragons and 30 Seconds to Mars, even up and comers Walk the Moon, Victory Dance unifies so many styles that they naturally stand on their own.

Loads of fun to be had on the three dates the Minus 5 played opening for Jeff Tweedy and his phenomenal group. I was quite happy to once again play drums with my friends Scott, Mike and make a new friend in Casey Neill. The Tweedy crew were extraordinarily nice and it was an absolutely pleasure to do those shows. Special thank you to Spencer Tweedy for letting me use his kit--and i'm telling you, he is a fantastic drummer. If you get the chance to see him play, do it--he has a great style and is impressive on the traps. Super nice to boot. I felt so fortunate to see so many friends in the last few days--the planets aligned just right and I was able to see people I care about that I haven't seen in sometime, or at best don't get to see often enough. Fantastic.

Of course, now it's back to the JL. Recently had a show at dba that went very well, especially considering that the line up for the show fluctuated greatly in the days leading up to it! Still, Lee, Casey and Keith (with an assist from DC) performed admirably and we had a great night. 
In the process of writing and recording new stuff, although it won't be out for sometime. Gonna take my time with this one. More news on it as it gets clearer, but I can tell you there will be exciting things to talk about sometime soon. Keep yer eyes peeled.....

Loads of fun to be had on the three dates the Minus 5 played opening for Jeff Tweedy and his phenomenal group. I was quite happy to once again play drums with my friends Scott, Mike and make a new friend in Casey Neill. The Tweedy crew were extraordinarily nice and it was an absolutely pleasure to do those shows. Special thank you to Spencer Tweedy for letting me use his kit--and i'm telling you, he is a fantastic drummer. If you get the chance to see him play, do it--he has a great style and is impressive on the traps. Super nice to boot. I felt so fortunate to see so many friends in the last few days--the planets aligned just right and I was able to see people I care about that I haven't seen in sometime, or at best don't get to see often enough. Fantastic.
Of course, now it's back to the JL. Recently had a show at dba that went very well, especially considering that the line up for the show fluctuated greatly in the days leading up to it! Still, Lee, Casey and Keith (with an assist from DC) performed admirably and we had a great night. 
In the process of writing and recording new stuff, although it won't be out for sometime. Gonna take my time with this one. More news on it as it gets clearer, but I can tell you there will be exciting things to talk about sometime soon. Keep yer eyes peeled.....
Save The World
They say freedom lies in being bold. For the accomplished professional musicians in the modern rock trio Save The World, that means taking time out of their hectic schedules to form a band that plays the music they love, and then paying forward the good vibes with soaring hooks and uplifting messages.

“When I was trying to come up with names for the band, I saw the phrase ‘Save the world’ in a movie theater. I thought about that statement a lot,” recalls Dan Tracey. “It felt like it encompassed everything I wanted the band to be. It filled people up with inspiration, it was positive, and fit perfectly with the music I wanted to make—songs you could blast loudly driving around with the windows down.”

Save The World pens emotionally charged songs with rich, melodic choruses.

The trio share an almost telepathic artistic interplay that forgoes genre conventions in favor of a signature sound that’s modern, anthemic, and refreshingly dynamic.

Save The World’s chief songwriter Dan Tracey on guitar, vocals, keyboards; Robert Wright on bass, vocals, keyboards, Taurus pedals, percussion, producer, engineer ; and Jon Wysocki on drums. Outside STW, each player has a gilded musical résumé. Dan Tracey is highly regarded for his songwriting, singing, and guitar playing skills. He’s composed music for major television shows and films, and performed and recorded with a variety of established musicians—currently, he plays guitar and sings in the Alan Parsons Live Project. Robert Wright draws recognition onstage and in the studio as a multi-instrumentalist, a songwriter with multiple artist cuts and publishing deals, and as a producer, where he topped the Billboard Country Album charts multiple times and earned many Gold and Platinum album awards. Jon Wysocki is best known as the founding member of the chart-topping, multi-million record selling modern rock band Staind from the band’s halcyon years, 1995 until 2011.

Unlike other bands with esteemed résumés, Save The World’s origins are humble. Dan Tracey and Jon Wysocki both came up in the Springfield, Massachusetts music scene. Over the years, they admired each other’s wildly divergent paths. Tracey became an in-demand Nashville musician, and Wysocki was in one of the biggest rock bands of modern times. Robert Wright and Dan Tracey met in Nashville—where Tracey relocated over 20 years ago—and had an instant artistic rapport. Tracey was the intermediary between Wright and Wysocki.

That fateful first band meeting, at Capricorn Soundworks in Nashville, was to record STW’s debut single “Bleed.” Dan wrote the melody-driven masterstroke song in his van on the way back from a gig—it was the first rock song he had written in years. The song is undeniable. “I wasn’t interested in starting a band,” Tracey reveals. “We all have so many obligations pursuing different endeavors and touring with different artists.” But recording that track that day was epiphanic. “I was in a band years ago that had a unique sound, and I always regretted leaving it. Here was another chance to do something I believed in and felt passionate about,” he confides.

Currently, the band is readying a cadre of singles to be sequenced into a record. “I want to make each song great. I want there to be ten hits on it with no filler,” Tracey says. He continues: “When people buy this record, they’re going to get hit with a lot of diversity.”

The band’s leadoff single, “Bleed,” is both cathartic and catchy, a gut-punch of melody that unpacks the tattoo trend in a profound way. “The meaning of the song hit me when I was getting ready for that morning’s sessions—the pain of getting tattoos allows people to let out their pain and their dreams. It’s a release,” Tracey says. “I then called Robert at 8:30 in the morning and woke him up to tell him about the lyrics and video concept.” The video interweaves emotive narratives with performance footage for an arresting effect. “When I saw the final cut of the video, the story had so much weight, I just sat there with tears streaming down my face,” Robert Wright says. “It hit me with the same feelings that I hope it hits other people with because the band is not the focus of this whole thing, the message is.”

The band’s follow-up single, “Circus Maximus,” doesn’t let up on pent-up passion bursting from burly riffs and skyward hooks. “It’s about the poisoning of our society by the 24/7 media,” Tracey says. The bridge features a poignant cameo from rock icon Alan Parsons. It’s a spoken-word piece that raises hairs:
True to its promise, Save The World exhibits refreshing diversity through the chilling, Pink Floyd-esqueness of “This Little Pill” and the majestic modern Prog-Rock of “Princes and Thieves.” The track “This Little Pill” might be the “Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)” of 2016. It addresses the thought-control battle for the minds of children of today. The opening line is visceral. Here Tracey sings:

Hey ADD kid who just can’t sit still/I’m gonna fix you by breakin your will/Focus on things that you don’t adore/Rewire your heart so you’re fully restored.

STW also has majestic Prog-Rock epic “Princes and Thieves” written in the tradition of classic Alan Parsons Project, but played by the guys, it’s unmistakably Save The World.

Reflecting back on the impulse to start a band, Robert Wright says: “I have a 20 year history of chasing down music that features lyrics with substance, and huge melodic hooks that won’t leave you alone — music that’s angry, music that’s a celebration. Doing this with a band has been an itch I haven’t been able to scratch. I want this music to make people realize they have the power to answer this challenge — to truly save the world.”

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Loudini Interviews BAD COP

Firmly planted outside of any political spectrum, loud, unabashed and fluent in DIY principles, Bad Cop formed in 2009 and immediately caught interest of one of America's oldest punk labels--ROIR, home to Bad Brains and releases from MC5, Beastie Boys, Television and others.  Frontman Adam Moult and co left the buckle of the Bible Belt for the Big Apple and inked a record deal just four months after starting the band.  

Since the debut LP, Harvest the Beast (ROIR, 2010), Bad Cop has run the gamut of American rock 'n' roll, from seemingly endless lineup changes, to becoming a CMJ and SXSW favorite alongside indie breakouts like Foxygen and Local Natives. The group even toured as direct support to break-out acts like Cage the Elephant, meanwhile establishing a successful indie label--Jeffery Drag Records--amidst a music industry in decline. 

It's now been over a year since Bad Cop's critically acclaimed The Light On EP. Since then, Nashville's former hellions were invited by Converse to record at their Rubber Tracks studio in Brooklyn. With the help of engineer Hector Castillo (Lou Reed, David Bowie, Bjork, Roger Waters), the band recorded and self-produced a handful of tracks during a short stay in NYC.  They later paired with Converse again to produce a video for their pivotal track "Wish You Well" with critically lauded director Tim Nackashi (TV on the Radio, Neon Indian, The Faint).

The resulting product, the Wish You Well … and Goodbye EP, shows a new side of Bad Cop. The band who were once no stranger to the wilder times of rock n roll have managed to channel that rambunctious energy into three seamlessly-crafted songs. They haven't lost their edge; they've just harnessed it. In a lot of ways, the band has grown up, but they haven't grown out of making great music. More is on the way as they plot to release another EP as well as their long-awaited second LP, but for now, they begin with Wish You Well … and Goodbye.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Loudini Interviews Carla Cooke

The Loudini Rock and Roll Circus Interview Edition
featuring Carla Cooke
Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini
The Legendary Sam Cooke is about music, religion, romance, and history. Carla Cooke is the youngest daughter of the Legendary Sam Cooke. Carla’s future mirrors the image of her father. Carla crafted her sound in the church similar to her dad and never sought to use her father’s name but to build her own reputation as many do. Now the younger Cooke knows her father’s roots are so deep that Carla has become her own person and connects with her roots through her father’s music.

Carla Cooke’s style is diverse in Gospel, Christian, R&B, Soul, Pop and the contemporary sound that embraces today’s culture. Carla has the flavor of longevity that will maintain a fan and consumer base to make hits. With a strong vocal range and warm personality, Carla’s stage presence commands the environment wherever she performs. Carla has performed in concert with the Legendary Four Tops and Freda Payne, on the Norwegian Cruise Line, musical performances at Festivals and various venues throughout the United States. Carla Cooke has a CD entitled “A Time to Remember” produced by producer, songwriter Kevin McCord who wrote hit songs for the group “One Way” and “Alicia Myers”. Carla’s CD covers renditions of her father’s hit songs including “A Change Gone Come”, “Summertime” and “Lost and Looking” as well as several compositions she wrote.

Carla is also featured on a compilation CD on the Motor City Hits Label with a song entitled “Could It Be That All I’m Missing Is You” produced by LJ Reynolds of the acclaimed group “The Dramatics”. Various artists on the Motor City Hits CD include “The Four Tops”, “The Dramatics”, “LJ Reynolds”, “The Contours”, “The Vandella’s” and “Keith Washington”. 

Carla is set to begin “The Daughters of Rhythm and Blues Tour”. This tour will feature daughters of R&B Legends who will take the stage to showcase their talent in honor of their parents. The Daughters will pay homage to their parents by performing unforgettable tunes of their music that has stood the test of time and is loved by so many fans. The daughters will also feature their own songs and ones that inspire them as well. The first leg of the tour began with Carla Cooke along with Robyn Charles, daughter of Ray Charles and Rhonda Ross, daughter of Diana Ross at the Katherine Hepburn Cultural Center.  It was an overwhelming success. Now Carla and Rhonda continue together with their spectacular show.  Don’t miss this unforgettable journey with the ladies coming soon to venues across the United States and Abroad!

On a personal note people are amazed at the fact that Carla has been married for almost 30 years and is the proud mother of 7 adult children. 

Carla is currently working on a new CD which will showcase her gifts as a vocalist and composer. Carla Cooke proves that the apple does not fall far from the tree as she gives the listener the raw talent, emotion, beauty and charisma that has her carrying the Cooke family torch musically into the new millennium.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Let it Out by Flying Joes by Loudini

Loudini Rock and Roll Circus 
Hosted by Lou Lombardi aka Loudini & Katie Simone

Featured album: Let it Out by Flying Joes 
Lou and Katie talking about the recent release “Let it out” by Flying Joes and give an on air review. Loudini Artists:  Flying Joes, Steve Hill, Clairy Browne

When it comes to one-man bands, guitarist and singer extraordinaire Steve Hill has no limits. The truest definition of a one-man band; Hill performs standing up while singing and playing guitar, his feet playing bass drum, snare drum, hi-hats and with a drum stick fused to the head of his trusty guitar, any other percussion within reach. An overnight sensation 20 years in the making, Steve Hill is an ambitious and raucous force to be reckoned with on the Canadian and international blues-rock scene. “The one-man band style has made him the top star in the Canadian blues scene right now.” (Bob Mersereau, CBC)
Following the success of his JUNO nominated Solo Recordings Volume 1, which also won album of the year at the International Blues Challenge in 2013, and JUNO Award winner Solo Recordings Volume 2, Steve Hill released Solo Recordings Volume 3 on March 4, 2016. Solo Recordings Volume 3 features originals that are outright rockers (Damned, Dangerous, Rhythm All Over, Smoking Hot Machine, Can’t Take It With You, Walkin’ Grave) to more acoustic-based melodic tracks (Slowly Slipping Away, Troubled Times, Emily) and three reimagined and rearranged covers (Still A Fool & A Rollin Stone, Rollin & Tumblin / Stop Breaking Down, Going Down That Road Feeling Bad).
Solo Recordings Volume 3 shows an artist at the top of his game and proves why the Montreal Gazette called him “the meanest guitar player in Canada.”

“When I started the Solo Recordings projects four years ago, I had hopes that the songs and performances would resonate with my existing fan-base”, says Hill. “I am constantly trying to improve on the songs, both lyrically and technically, live and recorded, in order to keep the fans excited about my material and live shows. I feel that Solo Recordings Volume 3 is my best work yet and I am excited to present it”.
Hill’s reputation as an exciting performer has provided him the opportunity to showcase his talents at some of Canada’s biggest music festivals including the Montreal Jazz Festival, Ottawa Blues Festival, Mont Tremblant International Blues Festival, Thunder Bay Blues Festival, Kitchener Blues Festival and more. Steve Hill is clearly in his element as a solo artist and one-man band, inviting listeners into a world of musical madness in the form of blues and rock ‘n’ roll.

  • Genre
    Pop, soul, dance, R&B
  • Record Label
  • Short Description
    My new album "Pool" is now available for pre-order!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Loudini Interviews Rhonda Ross

Singer-songwriter, Rhonda Ross, is an international Social-Artist, who explores questions of race, gender, sexuality and spirituality through her art. Her original music lives in the gap between jazz, funk and gospel while her lyrics delve into life's biggest questions and answers. From racism, sexism and homophobia to the need for self-love and spirituality,  Rhonda uses her music to examine the society in which she lives and through all of it, asks “In the midst of THIS, how can I still be free?" She has great power on stage and her refreshingly personal and moving performances set her apart from other vocalists of her era. Rhonda's music flows straight from her essence and her bright spirit uplifts everyone in the room. With a crown of natural hair, Rhonda graces the stage with the gravitas and glamour of a modern-day queen.  As the only child of Diana Ross and Motown Founder Berry Gordy, it has become evident that Rhonda not only has the talent, but the significance to carry on her parents’ legacy, all the while establishing her own unique musical destination.

Rhonda's music is based in traditional jazz, but pulls from the entire African diaspora. In 1994, she met, married, and began a 20-year musical collaboration with jazz pianist and composer Rodney Kendrick. Through him, Rhonda commenced studying with the late jazz great Abbey Lincoln. “It was Abbey and Rodney who convinced me to begin my journey as a singer-songwriter.” Rhonda says, “I primarily consider myself a story-teller and poet. I use my music to inspire and to uplift. To teach people – including myself.” Their live CD, Rhonda Ross Live: Featuring Rodney Kendrick is a hot internet seller.

Now a mother to a young son, Rhonda’s music has taken on the more mature stance of a woman “with the understanding and wisdom of a 40 yr old, but the passion and dream-seeking of a 20 yr old!” And what a combination it is! Rhonda is one of the rare artists today using her music to examine the society she lives in – from racism to sexism to homophobia to the need for self-love and spirituality, Rhonda’s songs look through all of it and ask “In the midst of THIS, how can I still live the best life possible?  New songs have emerged. Songs like: “Nobody’s Business” – a groovy, bass-led reminder that “your joy comes from the inside and that it’s nobody else’s job to make you happy”, and “Summer Day”  - an upbeat realization that even after the harshest winter, the sun will re-emerge and “the buds of hope can still bloom”.  ”Through Rhonda’s individual and creative expression, the legendary Ross influence continues to live on and expand. 

Rhonda headlined one of President Obama’s 2nd Inaugural Balls, and later performed to standing ovations and rave reviews at The Hollywood Bowl, The Montreal International Jazz Festival,  Wolf Trap, and The Theater at Madison Square Garden. Rhonda's live performance will thoroughly entertain you and move you to the point of tears – all while inspiring you to believe that you can do or be anything!