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Keyword: Alabama

Ward Davis - Black Cats And Crows - CD Review

Review: Michael Segets

2020 will go down in the annals as a pandemic year. The musicians, organizers, sound engineers and all the people who live from concerts and live performances were hit particularly hard. Still, the year was not musically a failure, because some good records saw the light of day. Especially in the Americana, old friends and new artists spoke up with successful works. Ward Davis's “Black Cats And Crows” is now also part of this series.

On his third album, Davis confirms his reputation as an exceptional songwriter who has already composed pieces for Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard. His strength lies in writing texts that appear honest and in which the listener can identify. The music serves Davis as a means of coping, so that personal experiences are often processed in it. Still, he hopes his songs will be meaningful to his audience as well. In fact, his songs allow you to immerse yourself in them and identify with their moods.

"Heaven Had A Hand" is a song to which Davis has a close biographical relationship. “Get To Work Whiskey” is also autobiographical. The piece captures the moment when his wife put him in front of the door and was designed immediately after this situation. The influence of the country is clearly evident here.

This also shines through on other tracks (“Threads”, “Where I Learned To Live”), which is largely due to the violin or the slide. “Nobody” is also on this line. Shawn Camp contributed to the creation of this fine track.

For other pieces, Davis got further support from renowned colleagues. Cody Jinks worked on "Colorado" and "Black Cats And Crows". Tennessee Jet was also involved in the title track. With its special dynamic, the song is one of the highlights of the album, like the rocking opener "Ain't Gonna Be Today", co-written by Kendell Marvel.

Excellent is “Sounds Of Chains”, whose dusty atmosphere is underlaid with dry drums. The powerful guitar by Scott Ian (Anthrax) then catapults the song to the top position of the work. Among the quiet titles, “Book Of Matches” develops a high intensity with relatively simple means.

Davis accompanies several songs on the piano. He ends the album with two ballads (“Good To Say Goodbye”, “Good And Drunk”), on which the piano has a leading role. The Alabama piece "Lady Down On Love" is also carried by the piano playing. With the bluesy “Papa And Mama” by Ray Scott, there is a second cover among the fourteen tracks.

Ward Davis writes great songs. The beginning of “Black Cats And Crows” is particularly impressive because of its diversity. In the second part of the CD a few pearls can be found among the ballads, a tempo variation there might have done the work good. But this does not diminish the positive overall impression that Davis leaves with his third album.

Ward Davis Music - Thirty Tigers / Membran (2020)
Style: Americana

01. ain't gonna be today
02. Black Cats and Crows
03. Threads
04. Sounds Of Chains
05. Get To Work Whiskey
06. Colorado
07. Book Of Matches
08. Heaven Had A Hand
09. Where I Learned To Live
10. Papa and Mama
11. Lady Down On Love
12. Nobody
13. Good To Say Goodbye
14. Good and Drunk

Ward Davis
Ward Davis on Facebook
Thirty Tigers
October graduation

Posted on Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Americana, Anthrax, Black Cats And Crows, Cody Jinks, Kendell Marvel, Merle Haggard, Ray Scott, Scott Ian, Shawn Camp, Tennessee Jet, Ward Davis, Willie NelsonLeave a comment on Ward Davis - Black Cats And Crows - CD Review

Deep Purple - Deep South - Woodland Drive - Live At Jimmy Carter’s Farmhouse - CD review and competition

Who does not know the lines from “Sweet Home Alabama” in which Ronnie Van Zant sings contemptuously: “In Birmingham they love the governor, boo boo boo!”.

What was meant was none other than the then incumbent Governor of Alabama, Wallace, who belonged to the arch-conservative wing of the Democrats and was a great advocate of racial politics. In the course of his career he applied for the presidential candidate of his party four times.

In 1976, he met Jimmy Carter, then governor of Georgia, in an intra-party election campaign. At the time, it was common practice for candidates to hold large parties at their country estates for important figures in their camp and beyond.

It was customary to invite hip rock and pop bands, or solo artists, as accompanying live musicians. Wallace acts such as the Charlie Daniels Band or Ted Nugent at the imposing parties.

Of course, Jimmy Carter didn't want to back down either, and had well-known bands on his farm in Plains such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Allman Brothers or the Eagles as illustrious mood makers.

A novelty was that Carter invited a British band to his home, namely the hard rockers from Deep Purple, who after great years (now in the Mark IV line-up with David Coverdale, Tommy Bolin, Jon Lord, Glenn Hughes and Ian Paice), but was in crisis mode and dissolved a short time later, if only temporarily, but at least for almost eight years.

Recordings of this festival have now been released from the archives of the Carter family. Even if the sound carrier "Deep South - Woodland Drive - Live At Jimmy Carter's Farmhouse" that resulted from this sound is at bootleg level by today's standards, it is still an exceptional contemporary document and because of its authenticity (you can, for example, sometimes hear during the Song pauses popping crown or champagne corks, easily audible snippets of conversation during the song pauses, loud crickets chirping, etc.) should be classified as extremely valuable.

In addition, there are the various charming constellations that are created through spontaneous participation in the set list of musicians such as Ronnie Van Zant, Gregg Allman, Allen Collins, Ed King, Gary Rossington, Bob Seger, Neil Young and Eric Clapton emerged, all of which were among the prominent guests.

The numerous, previously unpublished photos by Helmut Newton (also present that evening) in the 16-page black and white booklet alone are worth purchasing this wonderfully designed double CD.

The party reached the boiling point, of course, when the British played the aforementioned Skynyrd classics and both Van Zant and Neil Young (who also gets his fat off in this song) stepped together on stage to fight for the above. To intone lines of the third stanza together. But also at the end of the jam (“Jam For Jimmy”), where everyone named came together (even Carter rattled the tambourine), there was of course no stopping them.

In addition to hits like “Child In Time” (lead vocals Bob Seger), “Highway Star” (lead vocals Eric Clapton) and “Smoke On The Water” (lead vocals Gregg Allman), the last two albums were mainly concentrated of that era, "Stormbringer" and "Come Taste The Band".

Last but not least, this high-profile event provided Carter with enormous tailwinds, so that Wallace withdrew his application in the same year (it was said for health reasons) after he had lost several primaries in the southern states against Carter.

Jimmy Carter then narrowly prevailed against Republican Gerald Ford in 1976 and became the new 39th President of the United States of America. But he was replaced by Ronald Reagan after only one term.

"Deep South - Woodland Drive - Live At Jimmy Carter’s Farmhouse" by Deep Purple will be available for purchase in a limited number of 5,000 copies from the beginning of April. Thanks to good relationships, we managed to get hold of five copies in advance, three of which we would like to make available to our loyal readership.

The following question must be answered correctly:

What was the full name of the Governor of Alabama?

a) Henry A. Wallace
b) Edgar Wallace
c) George C. Wallace

Please send an email with the correct solution by April 1st, 2020 (before midnight) to [email protected]

We will draw a winner from all the correct senders, who will then be notified immediately and delivered with the CD.

Woodland Records (1976/2020)
Style: hard rock

CD 1:
01. You Keep On Moving
02. Stormbringer
03. I need love
04. Love Don't Mean A Thing
05. Holy Man
06. Dealer
07. Hold On
08. Lady Double Dealer
09. You Can’t Do It Right
10. High ball shooter
11. The Gypsy
12. Drifters

CD 2:
01. Soldier Of Fortune
02. Comin ‘Home
03. Lady Luck
04. Highway Star
05. Love Child
06. Smoke On The Water
07. Sweet Home Alabama
08. Child In Time
09. Jam for Jimmy

Deep Purple
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Betty Fox Band - Peace In Pieces - CD Review

The past year is barely over and the new one begins again with a sensationally good record. "Peace In Pieces" is the name of the third work by the Petersburg, Florida-based Betty Fox Band, which neither I nor probably anyone else here should have on the screen until now.

The pretty blonde, with one of the best voices I have ever heard in the soulful blues genre, has gone to the famous FAME studios in Muscle Shoals Alabama for 13 original compositions and a gospel standard, with exquisite accompaniment by musicians such as Spooner Oldham (Neil Young, J.J. Cale, Jackson Browne), Clayton Ivey (Boz Scaggs, Gregg Allman, Toby Keith), Chris Peet, Barry Williams and long-time companion Josh Nelms.

The latter two are also responsible for the sensitive production (wonderful, how the instruments merge here and prepare the protagonist the 'stage' for her famous singing).

The pieces mostly move in the relaxed, bluesy-soulful mid-tempo range, where Bettie's vocal variability can unfold best. Every now and then it gets a bit faster with things like the title track, the shuffling “Feels So Good” and the swinging “Rising Strong”.

Sometimes you come across tracks like “Magnificent Hallucination” or “Shattered Dreams & Broken Toes” cannot ignore comparisons with Beth Hart, but personally I like Bettie's voice a little better in the range.

Oldham and Ivey shine with their well-coordinated, song-compliant keyboard work and the wind section is usually rather softly puffed up, only with “Sweet Memories” there is a saxophone solo played by Brad Guin.

The most conspicuous accents are set by the protagonist guitarist Josh Nelms, his kneeling solos in the southern soulful opener "Green Light", in "Peace In Pieces (wonderfully lively) or in the surprise song of the album" Fireflies ", where Fox and Co. suddenly one Scatter eight-minute, acoustic / electric guitar-controlled Americana Schwofer in the best Lucinda Williams style.

At the end, Fox pays tribute to her typical American musical education (family / church) with the gospel standard “Til The Storm Passes By” and gives a final vocal parade performance with her voice to organ and piano sounds.

In the end, I have to say that I have seldom been so enthusiastic about a female voice so quickly. Betty Fox and her excellent band deliver a very hot candidate for the 'Album of the Year' right from the start.

Whoever buys this CD is undoubtedly a smart fox!

In-house production (2019)
Style: Blues & More

01. Green Light
02. Winter’s cold
03. Marie
04. Sweet memories
05. Peace In Piece
06. Let Go Or Be Dragged
07. Runnin ‘Back To You
08. Feels so good
09. Sweet Goodnight
10. Magnificent hallucination
11. Shattered Dreams & Broken Toes
12. Rising Strong
13. Fireflies
14. 'Til The Storm Passes By

Betty Fox Band
Betty Fox Band on Facebook

Posted on Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Americana, Betty Fox Band, Blues, Fame Studios, Gospel, Muscle Shoals, Peace In Pieces, SoulLeave a comment on Betty Fox Band - Peace In Pieces - CD Review

Them Dirty Roses - October 12th, 2019, Kulturrampe, Krefeld - concert report

Them Dirty Roses' second appearance in Krefeld brought the Kulturrampe another sold out house. After the sweaty performance last year, the band from Nashville had warmly recommended themselves for another concert evening.

Many visitors to the first concert therefore made the pilgrimage to the ramp again. The unanimous opinion after the show was that the band made another huge leap forward.

After a short, feedback-influenced intro, with the strong “Grew Up In The Country” right at the beginning of the evening, the guys left no doubt about the direction from which the (Southern) wind was blowing. The audience let themselves be carried away immediately, so that the hall was boiling after the interplay of “Molly” and “Wiskey In My Cup”.

“A Bad Hand”, which can be found on the deluxe edition of the two EPs by Them Dirty Roses, continued to heat. The following, previously unknown pieces also worked incredibly well and didn't detract from the mood. After “You Can’t” and the melodious “Sunday Drunk” with riffs a la Lynyrd Skynyrd, the band mixed in a slower track with “Black Magic Lady”.

In the meantime, the ramp had become quite charged in terms of temperature. An understanding guest gave the sweating troop a lap to compensate for the loss of fluids. She was enthusiastic about the Altbier and guitarist Andrew Davis obviously had fun plopping the swing top. Here the ramp again proved to be a forum for intercultural exchange.

The band interacted well with each other and with the audience. There was joking on the stage, and the visitors were encouraged to clap or sing along. I liked "What Your Daddy Doesn’t Know" even better than the studio version and the memorable vocal part of the as yet unreleased "Hate Me" was quickly rehearsed.

The short announcements by frontman James Ford before the tracks did not disturb the high pace of the concert, but instead kept the flow running smoothly. Later on, bassist Ben Crain took over the moderation several times, for example in the case of the not entirely youth-free “Back Seat Virgin”.

Them Dirty Roses played their songs with a lot of pressure throughout. The powerful drum intro to "Trouble" by Frank Ford was particularly memorable. James' younger brother also introduced the last third of the main set with a solo of heads and cymbals, which was extensively acclaimed by those present.

In addition, more filigree passages found their place, for example when guitarist Andrew Davis performed his solos. There were a few of them during the show. Like “Songs About You”, they were exactly the right length. For me that means that they didn't get out of hand, but instead integrated themselves into the recognizable song.

The only cover was "Mississippi Queen" by Mountain. Otherwise, "Them Dirty Roses" put a focus on their new pieces, which are expected to be released in March. “The Good Life” is a hammer song, but “Holy Roller” also develops a great arc of suspense. After the band introduction, the ninety-minute set ended with an earthy rock with "Hits And Pills".

The young men didn’t let themselves be asked for long and added their Southern anthem “Cocaine And Wiskey” and “Shake It” with joint headbanging as an encore. Hair flew all evening anyway, both on and off the stage. Ben Crain and Andrew Davis entered into a competition to see who would offer the more interesting performance. It's hard to decide as both of them jumped, circled, and posted in an incredibly entertaining way.

It was a special evening with “Them Dirty Roses”, on which the band and the audience showed themselves to be in an excellent mood. In the conversation after the performance, Frank Ford also praised the spirit that prevailed in the location.For me the show is one of the absolute highlights of this concert year.

The performance also aroused curiosity about the new album. The band now plays in the same league as Robert Jon & The Wreck or Hogjaw, all of whom are under contract with Teenage Head Music. The band is definitely one of the must-see dates for Southern rockers on their next tour.

James Ford (lead vocals, electric guitar)
Andrew Davis (electric guitar, vocals)
Ben Crain (bass, vocals)
Frank Ford (drums, vocals)

Images: Gernot Mangold
Text: Michael Segets

Them Dirty Roses
Them Dirty Roses on Facebook
Teenage Head Music
Krefeld cultural ramp

Posted in Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Hogjaw, Krefeld, Kulturrampe, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Mountain, Nashville, Pille peerlings, Robert Jon & The Wreck, Rock, Southern Rock, Teenage Head Music, Them Dirty RosesLeave a comment on Them Dirty Roses - 10/12/2019 , Kulturrampe, Krefeld - concert report

Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit - Live From The Ryman - CD Review

Review: Michael Segets

Jason Isbell has had some successes over the past few years. The former drive-by truckers guitarist stormed the US charts with the two albums "Something More Than Free" (2015) and "The Nashville Sound" (2017). In the general lists, they landed in sixth and fourth place with almost 150,000 sales each. They took top positions in the indie, country, folk and rock categories. Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit have won four Grammys to date.

In Europe, Jason Isbell is still one of the insider tips. So far he has mainly worked for me as the producer of the American Aquarium CD “Burn. Flicker. Die. ”(2012) in memory. He has been very productive since leaving Drive By Truckers in 2007. Isbell released six studio albums and two or three live discs, if you count a special press for Record Store Day 2017. The current work "Live From The Ryman" includes tracks from the last three studio albums, so there is no overlap with the previous, regular live recordings. The songwriter from Green Hill, Alabama, moves musically between roots rock and Americana.

The recordings of several appearances in Nashville's The Ryman from 2017 have an immediate and earthy sound that captures the live atmosphere well. Isbell's voice is controlled in such a way that it is clearly in the foreground, which is always a plus for me. The expressive vocals in connection with powerful guitars create an authentic concert feeling. The opener "Hope The High Road", "The Life You Chose", "Flying Over Water" as pieces in a medium tempo appear rough and unpolished, but remain harmonious.

They reflect the basic tempo of the album, which occasionally steps up a gear (“Super 8”), but tends to be more ballad-like.

Jason Isbell's intense vocals give the slower tracks an enormous dynamic. "Flagship", "Elephant", "Cover Me Up" and "If We Were Vampires" are pieces of this kind that are instrumentalized in a rather reduced manner. The earthy sound is refined by Amanda Shires' violin. A slide guitar dominates the strong “Last Of My Kind”. At the end of the song, Jason Isbell introduces The 400 Unit: his wife Amanda Shires plays the fiddle, Sadler Vaden the guitar and Jimbo Hart the bass. Derry DeBorja (Son Volt) uses the keyboard and the accordion. Chad Gamble is on the drums.

Some of Isbell's songs have something of his musical role model Neil Young. The parallels are particularly clear in “White Man’s World” and “Cumberland Gap”. Even if Isbell's voice doesn't sound nearly as warm and velvety as Todd Thibaud's, the layout of some pieces - like “Something More Than Free” - or the chorus and the guitar playing in “24 Frames” reminds us here and there the musician from Burlington.

With “Live From The Ryman” Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit succeeds in creating a stirring disc that gains its charm from the intense presentation of good song material. The honest and handmade roots rock of the band deserves to get more attention in this country as well.

Southeastern Records / Thirty Tigers / Alive (2018)
Style: roots rock, americana

01. Hope the High Road
02. 24 frames
03. White Man’s World
04. Flagship
05. Cumberland Gap
06. Something More Than Free
07. The Life You Chose
08. Elephant
09. Flying over water
10. Last Of My Kind
11. Cover Me Up
12. Super 8
13. If We Were Vampires

Jason Isbell
Jason Isbell on Facebook
October graduation

Posted on Categories GeneralTags Alabama, American Aquarium, Americana, Drive By Truckers, Green Hill, Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit, Live From The Ryman, Nashville, Neil Young, Roots Rock, Son Volt, Todd ThibaudLeave a comment on Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit - Live From The Ryman - CD Review

Anderson East - 03.06.2018, Cologne, Stadtgarten - concert report

The musician Anderson East, originally from Athens, Alabama, now resides in Nashville, and his ensemble, as part of his 2018 World Tour, made another stop with us for two concerts, including one in the Stadtgarten Cologne, which this evening, despite the summer Heat, with over 300 spectators, was very well filled.

First, an artist named Sir Pryce delivered a one man show on a Nord Stage 2 EX piano as support for a good half an hour. The outwardly, with a brightly colored Belize shirt and partly colored Iroquois hairstyle, quite exotic-looking solo performer, proved with pieces like "All New", "Follow Your Light", "Through My Head" or "Pulse" A feeling for good and melodic pop and R&B songwriting, even if in the end the whole thing came across to me a bit too synthetic and monotonous.

At 9:00 p.m. Anderson set the course for an inspiring, exciting, opener after a clip with his companions Scotty and Jonny Murray, Darren Dodd, Philip Towns, Nate Hefron and Ben Clark, with the powerful "Somebody Pick Up My Pieces" Sweaty show, with mostly hearty soul rock and great ballads including well-dosed pop, R&B and country ingredients, which were very well received by the audience (predominantly female) and us.

The 29-year-old has a great voice, plays the guitar really well and can sweep an audience away, even if, due to his age, there may still be some room for improvement in charismatic terms. He still seems very boyish. In terms of level, he doesn't need to shy away from comparisons with similar acts like JJ Gray & Mofro or Thorbjorn Risager and his Black Tornados.

Above all, he can rely on the equally strong actors behind him. With Nate Hefron and Ben Clark there would be a wonderfully puffy brass section in the service of the songs. Then with Darren Dodd, an experienced and unexcited drummer, with Philip Towns, a rasta-curled, playful keyboardist and the Murray brothers, who act almost like Siamese twins, close together on bass and electric guitar (Scotty also with a couple of nice steel-like ones Slide inserts), musicians where one cog fits perfectly into the other.

So the set list flew, in which mostly of course his current major album “Encore” played the leading role (produced by Dave Cobb by the way), with tracks like “Satisfy Me”, “Sorry You're Sick”, “Surrender”, “If You Keep Leaving Me ”,“ King For A Day ”and the wonderfully atmospheric“ Devil In Me ”, literally pass you by. Only from the “Learning”, which was created for the sampler “Southern Family” and was frenetically celebrated at the end, some tracks were made significantly longer.

The climax and at the same time the conclusion of the main part was marked by the fantastic Southern Soul ballad “This Shall Too Last” with a furious instrumental part at the end, in which the participants pulled out all the stops. Especially the electric guitar parts of the curious, twisted-bearded Scotty Murray on Les Paul (in the best Southern Rock style) and Anderson (on the Stratocaster in the style of Mark Knopfler), in the end even for a short twin-style, really knocked me off Stool. One of the best songs that I got presented live so far in the first half of the year!

In view of the enthusiasm, the septet did not have to ask long for the encores, and did so with the Mariah Carey cover “Always Be My Baby” and the other great ballad “House Is A Building” (again with a furious, atmospheric finale) 'Sack' finally closed. After the concert, the visibly exhausted protagonist was patiently available for selfies and autographs. His question as to whether our report would be positive could actually only be answered at this point in time, as you can read it now, with a crystal-clear “Yes, of course!”!

Anderson East (lead vocals, electric and acoustic guitar)
Scotty Murray (electric guitar)
Philip Towns (keys)
Jonny Murray (bass)
Darren Dodd (drums)
Nate Hefron (saxophone)
Ben clark (trumpet)

Images: Gernot Mangold
Text: Daniel Daus

Anderson East
Anderson East on Facebook
Concert office Schoneberg
City garden Cologne

Posted on Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Anderson East, Athens, Blues Soul, Country, Cologne, Pop, R&B, Rock, Sir Pryce, StadtgartenLeave a comment on Anderson East - 03.06.2018, Cologne, Stadtgarten - concert review

Them Dirty Roses - 29.03.2018, Kulturrampe, Krefeld - concert report

Still quite impressed by the immensely strong Joe Bonamassa gig in the large Lanxess Arena in Cologne the evening before, it was now time to pull the lever back in the direction of club concerts, the young bugs Them Dirty Roses from Nashville, Tennessee, under the banner of Teenage Head Music, had their debut appearance in our beloved cute cultural ramp in Krefeld.

For the likeable guys, but also especially for the committed Rampen boss Pille Peerlings, I was pleased that he was allowed to proclaim a sold-out hut when he announced the band at 9:00 p.m., which is more likely with the first appearances of such insider acts is unusual. Well deserved reward for great continuous work, pill!

The boys then crawled through a full, 24-piece program (including two encores) in the course of the, as usual, two-part structured set. Since I only knew the deluxe version disc with the two EPs "Same" and "Trouble" by the quartet, which was reviewed by my colleague Jörg Schneider (who was also in charge of the pictures this time), after the powerful opener "You Can't" , of course tracks like “What Your Daddy Doesn't Know”, “Whiskey In My Cup”, “A Bad Hand” (a lot reminded me of Whiskey Myers) and the already inflationary “Whipping Post” had the highest recognition value.

The unlucky person of the evening was the lively playing lead guitarist Andrew Davis, from whose Gibson Les Paul a string had come loose, but which, as he reported, he had quickly repaired thanks to his previous work in a guitar shop. In the second part, his chain of wooden beads, which was decorated around his neck, tore and the many small balls rolled to the ground and scattered around his radius of action. Even earlier work in a boutique for jewelry accessories would hardly have been able to remedy this in a hurry. Well, praying the rosary, he can definitely bend himself first ...

The much stronger second part (both from the sound, light and content of the songs) with the two humorous tears “Songs About You” and “Molly” right at the beginning and great pieces such as a. "Head On", the successful mountain cover "Mississippi Queen", the Cadillac Three-swept "Grew Up In The Country", the "Trouble" with Skynyrd and Black Crowes ingredients as well as "Cocaine And Whiskey" the ramp to the boil.

Led Zeppelin's "Rock And Roll" and the dance-inspiring "Shake It", again from their own collection, in the encore section, earned the quartet thunderous applause. The audience present did not want to let the sweaty boys off the stage at first, but in view of the stressful tour program, it was respectfully accepted in the end.

The dynamic young Nashville foursome really gave everything and afterwards enjoyed lively small talk with the spectators at the merchandising stand and intense interest in his records and T-shirts. A great debut for Them Dirty Roses in the Krefeld culture ramp, there is already a lot of potential in it!

James Ford (lead vocals, electric guitar)
Andrew Davis (electric guitar, vocals)
Ben Crain (bass, vocals)
Frank Ford (drums, vocals)

Pictures: Jörg Schneider
Text: Daniel Daus

Them Dirty Roses
Them Dirty Roses on Facebook
Teenage Head Music
Krefeld cultural ramp
Jörg Schneider website

Posted on Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Krefeld, Kulturrampe, Nashville, Pille peerlings, Rock, Southern Rock, Them Dirty RosesLeave a comment on Them Dirty Roses - 03/29/2018, Kulturrampe, Krefeld - concert review

Gregg Allman - Southern Blood (Deluxe Edition) - CD Review

I have to say that I was really scared that we didn't get Gregg Allman's last work “Southern Blood” to discuss. I would have liked to have written a few more appreciative words about him at the moment, especially since there was no opportunity to write a review about him beforehand in our still young online medium. And what is a real Southern Rock magazine without such a musical heavyweight in the artist index?

Well, albeit a bit late, his final album “Southern Blood” ended up in my CD player in a roundabout way. But from the beginning. Gregg Allman is of course a musician and charismatic front man who has accompanied my musical path more than sustainably since my early youth. For example, the Allman Brothers LP "Brothers & Sisters" was my very first sound carrier that I bought with my own money. Many more in the orbit of the Allmans followed in the course of time.

His short marriage with Cher was amusing at the time, I think I remember a quote from her: "For Gregg Allman women are only good for two things: making the beds and then lying back in bed ...". I thought their song “Can You Fool” together was great.

Live I was able to admire his charismatic aura twice as part of the Allman Brothers Band. Once in the Cologne sports hall, which was sold out in 1980, and later again in 1991 in the E-Werk, also in the cathedral city.

I also have various recordings from his solo phases. His last release recorded in the Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals, with the striking title "Southern Blood", albeit predominantly with cover numbers, still forms a worthy and rounded conclusion to his considerable life's work.

It was probably not an easy matter for everyone involved to even bring these songs together in the face of the death and the related physical constitution of this exceptional musician. I assume an incredibly psychological burden, especially since some of the lyrics of the songs also fit the depressing situation.

You don't even want to know how Gregg was doing personally, it means that he was often only present in the studio for a few hours and sometimes had to be interrupted again and again. All in all, producer Don Was managed to create a sensitive whole in the end, which in the deluxe version has been expanded to include two live tracks.

By and large, this has largely outlined Gregg's musical preferences throughout his career. With very few exceptions, the songs, which are mostly ballad-like, contain naturally bluesy southern rock and country influences. What might seem new is the relatively omnipresent inclusion of a wind section in every piece, as well as the gospel-like harmony chants (embodied by the McCrary Sisters) and thus an intensified soulful flair. The percussion support and many steel guitar interludes are not necessarily associated with his name either.

You get goosebumps immediately with the opener "My Only True Friend", one of the two new compositions on this disc that Gregg created with his guitarist and musical director Scott Sharrad. In the text, Sharrad practically let the long deceased brother Duane speak to Gregg. Great introduction to the album!

Another moving moment for me is "I Love The Life I Live", because he treads the southern bluesy terrain, where Gregg felt most at home and probably also reflects his life motto. While listening, you can feel how the protagonist really hangs himself in here with his last bit of strength, vocally again. At the end of “Song For Adam” (with (harmony songs) written and supported by Jackson Browne, you can also literally feel and feel that the battle of a great artist came to an end here.

With Gregg Allman, the Southern Rock community has lost another and one of their last true icons. Even if he wasn't an angel all his life (“I'm No Angel”) he says goodbye with “Southern Blood” to the Southern Rock and Roll Heaven and is now hopefully back in the illustrious circle of Duane and his brothers in spirit like Butch Trucks, Ronnie Van Zant, Toy Caldwell, Hughie Thomasson and Co. Mach et jut, Midnight Rider!

Concord Records (2017)
Style: Southern Blues Rock

01. My Only True Friend
02. Once I Was
03. going going gone
04. Black Muddy River
05. Love The Life I Live
06.Willin ‘
07. Blind Bats And Swamp Rats
08. Out Of Left Field
09. Love Like Kerosene
10. Song For Adam (feat. Jackson Browne)
11. Love The Life I Live (Live)
12.Love Like Kerosene (Live)

Gregg Allman
Gregg Allman on Facebook

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J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices - Support: Miss Tess - 17.08.2017, Krefeld, Kulturrampe - concert report

A year ago, Kulturrampen-maker Markus' Pille ‘Peerlings was justifiably excited about the manageable audience on the occasion of the JP Harris & The Tough Choices concert, this time he was able to look forward to a very well-filled ramp. The strong performance of the Nashville band around their leader from Montgomery, Alabama, had probably attracted quite a few visitors at the time and the other great concerts in this sector recently, in connection with word of mouth (and our great reporting, um ...), should have done the rest of it.

As support, Harris had the young country chanteuse Miss Tess, who moved from New York to Nashville, in tow, who together with her teammate Thomas Bryan Eaton first presented her own music and then joined the Harris line-up with him .

Both equipped with the Telecaster electric guitars, which were later shouldered by JP Harris and Mark Sloan (Eaton with many strong solos), put the focus on a successful mix of tracks from Tess' current album "Baby We All Know" (including “Ride That Train”, “Little Lola” with a nice CCR flair, the brisk “Take You, Break You, Shake You”), a Willie Dixon cover (“I Just Wanna Make Love To You”), a piece from Eatons own pool, which he also sang himself (Tess Harmonies), as well as a brand new song called "The Moon Is An Ashtray".

Nice that towards the end Jon Whitlock also came on the drums (Tess now on bass), so that you could also get a little bit of her music conveyed in the 'full version' ambience. A successful, sympathetic start!

Line up:
Miss Tess (lead vocals, electric guitar, bass, vocals)
Thomas Bryan Eaton (electric guitar, pedal steel, vocals)
Jon Whitlock (guest drums)

After a short break, in principle no conversion was necessary, JP Harris got down to business, as mentioned above, compared to the previous year with Miss Tess on bass and Tom Bryan Eaton on pedal steel, in a slightly modified line-up.
Since he had not yet released a new album, the program was broadly similar to last year's performance with small exceptions. Tracks such as "California Turnarounds" (Opener), "Badly Bent", "Two For The Road", "South Oklahoma", "I'll Keep Calling" or "Home Is Where The Hurt Is" emerged from the subconscious again.

JP Harris embodied the narrative, often joking fronter, Mark Sloan and Eaton showed their filigree skills on the lead guitar and pedal steel with countless lively baritone, or crying, whimpering and droning solos. Particularly worth mentioning, perhaps, is the strong duet between JP and Tess Reitz on “Better Move It On Home”.

Harris outed his empathy for various, here z. Country musicians, some of whom are not so well known, such as Red Simpson ("Happy Go Lucky Truck Driver"), Micky Newberry ("Why Have You Been Gone So Long"), Jerry Reed (the "Free Born Man." "In a brilliant performance), Terry Allen (" Amarillo Highway "), but also for old stars like Waylon Jennings (" Lonesome On'ry And Mean ") and Dave Dudley with some cover numbers. With the only encore "Six Days On The Road" by the last named Dave Dudley, Harris & Co said goodbye to the enthusiastic audience after 20 intense, varied and curious pieces.

So JP Harris & The Tough Choices didn't make the choice difficult in the end. The visit was again absolutely worth it. A great advertisement for live country played with a lot of heart, drive and humor, which was very well received in the Kulturrampe.

Line up:
JP Harris (lead vocals, electric guitar)
Mark Sloan (electric guitar, vocals)
Miss Tess (bass, vocals)
Jon Whitlock (drums)
Thomas Bryan Eaton (pedal steel)

Images: Gernot Mangold
Text: Daniel Daus

J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices
J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices on Facebook
Miss Tess
Miss Tess on Facebook
Krefeld cultural ramp

Posted in Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Country, Honky Tonk, J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices, concert review, Krefeld, Kulturrampe, Miss Tess, Montgomery, NashvilleLeave a comment on J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices - Support: Miss Tess - 17.08.2017, Krefeld, Kulturrampe - concert report

Cale Tyson - Careless Soul - CD Review

In autumn 2014 Rolling Stone listed him among the ’10 New Artists You Need to Know ‘and characterized his music as“ old school, sad-bastard outlaw country for a new generation of excited country fans ”. The prominent newspaper The Guardian also gave an enthusiastic headline about the young Texan from Forth Worth, “A traditionalist for the future”.

Meanwhile, I have Cale Tyson's second album "Careless Soul" for review, and in fact, traditional country music, with all its facets from yesteryear, is really capitalized here. For me, to admit it, who prefers the rocky variations of Country, rather difficult material that takes getting used to.

Tyson has gone to the famous Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, with established musicians such as Jeremy Fetzer, Pete Lindberg, Skylar Wilson, Brett Resnick, David Hood, Jon Radford, Dan Knobler and Michael Rinne. There is also a horn section, a string quartet and various background singers (including Caitlin Rose). Michael Rinne (Emmylou Harris, Rodney Crowell) produced the work.

And so when listening to Tyson's own compositions you feel like you have been transported back to the sixties of the last century. A mixture of country in the style of the great masters (Johnny Cash / Hank Williams for example in “Dark Dark”, sometimes with a little Bakersfileld touch (“Easy”, “Railroad Blues”), Waltz-like, melancholy-soaked Schwofer ("Somebody Save Me", Traveling Man ") and a couple of Schunklers (High Lonesome Hills"), as they were probably served in the dancehalls and honkytonks of that time, garnished with a little soul ("Staying Kind", "Some Love A Woman ”), partly reminiscent of things from the Phil Spector era (“ Careless Soul ”), and a little blues (“ Pain In My Heart ”).

Cale's voice and Brett Resnick's weeping, whimpering, and riotous Pedal Steel (without being intrusive, however) naturally set the most striking accents on this disc.

Cale Tyson's second disc "Careless Soul" is grist to the mill for fans of the good old school country music. Performers such as Dwight Yoakam and J.P. I would cite Harris as an approximate contemporary reference. In May, the boy will shortly appear on stages in our country on three dates, including on May 8th, 2017 in our beloved cultural ramp in Krefeld (see also our concert tips).

Clubhouse Records (2017)
Style: Country

01. Staying child
02.Somebody Save Me
03. Careless Soul
04. Easy
05. Traveling Man
06. pain in my heart
07. Railroad Blues
08. Dark Dark
09. High Lonesome Hill
10. Gonna Love A Woman
11. Pain recapitulation
12. Ain't It Strange

Cale Tyson
Cale Tyson on Facebook
H’ART Musik-Vertrieb GmbH

Posted in Categories GeneralTags Alabama, Cale Tyson, Careless Soul, Country, David Hood, Fame Studios, Kulturrrampe Krefeld, Muscle Shoals, Rolling Stone, The GuardianLeave a comment on Cale Tyson - Careless Soul - CD Review