Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Dennis Quaid Jumps "Out Of The Box", The Delines Become "Imperial" and Lone Justice Revisits "The Western Tapes"

Movie-star Dennis Quaid is switching gears, from acting to music. Quaid and his band, The Sharks, recently released their debut album, "Out Of The Box" on November 30th through Omnivore Recordings. This album has been 30 years in the making, as Quaid had the itch to create music back in the '80's when he produced music for some of his early films. Dennis Quaid & The Sharks have history that dates back 18 years, performing around the L.A. club scene, but this is their first studio release.

It kicks off with the honky-tonk rock of "I'm In Love," as Quaid pays tribute to his early musical influences with this classic sounding country gem. They keep the energy flowing with the guitar-driven explosion of "Peaches No. 9" and "Out Of The Box." Dennis Quaid & The Sharks breath new life into their covers of well-known classics like The Doors' "L.A. Woman," "Riders On The Storm" and Larry Williams' "Slow Down," along with Van Morrison's "Gloria." They wrap up their new album with the autobiographical tale of "After The Fall." To find out more about Dennis Quaid & The Sharks and their new album "Out Of The Box," please visit the band's Facebook page at facebook.com/dennisquaidandthesharks.

Arriving January 11th, is the latest release from the Americana/country band, The Delines. Their new album titled "The Imperial," ends a three-year hiatus due to a car accident that was suffered by the band's lead singer, Amy Boone. Their new ten song release begins with the emotional ballads "Cheer Up Charley" and the title track, "The Imperial," as the melodies allow you to focus on Amy's vocals. The album continues with the slow waltz of "Let's Be Us Again" and the classic/nostalgic country sway of "Eddie & Polly." The songs on this new release play soft and quiet as the music just wraps you up like a comfortable blanket. The Delines closes out their new album with the blues of "He Don't Burn For Me" and the gentle touch of "Waiting On The Blue." To find out more about The Delines and their latest release "The Imperial," please visit thedelines.com.

Classic '80's country band, Lone Justice recently released their early demo collection "The Western Tapes, 1983" on November 23rd on vinyl and CD, just in time for Record Store Day. The new six-song release shows, that even before the release of the first album, that Lone Justice was special. Their classic country sound on "Don't Toss Us Away" pays homage to early days of honky-tonk country music. Their youthful energy comes quickly swinging by with "I See It" and "The Train," as these early songs showed potential, which lead to an all too short four year career. To find out more about Lone Justice's "The Western Tapes, 1983" release, please visit omnivorerecordings.com.

Monday, December 10, 2018

John McCutcheon Brings The Music Of Pete Seeger "To Everyone In All The World"

Singer/songwriter John McCutcheon has had a successful musical career that has lasted over five decades. During those years, he has had 6 Grammy nominations, 8 Parents Choice Awards, 5 American Library Association Awards and was inducted into the Wisconsin Music Hall of Fame in 2004. Of his 40+ recordings, his latest album is his most meaningful. It is a tribute to the late-Pete Seeger, who inspired him to become a musician back in 1963. 

John McCutcheon will be releasing his new album "To Everyone In All The World: A Celebration Of Pete Seeger" on January 11th, to celebrate what would have been the folk icon's 100th birthday. His new 15-track release has been years in the making as every song that McCutcheon produced was inspired by the work of Pete Seeger.

He begins with the stark, banjo strumming of "Well May The World Go," before picking up the tempo for the country swing of "If I Had A Hammer." McCutcheon add a bit is island flair to  "Guantanamera," then slows down for the emotional delivery of "Sailing Down My Golden River," which also features the beautiful vocals of Suzy Bogguss. John pours some funk onto "Talking Union," as he and Corey Harris delivery the lyrics like hip-hop artists. The album closes with some of Pete Seeger's most well known anthems, a quiet piano version of "Turn, Turn, Turn" and the gentle fragile hymn "How Can I Keep From Singing?" To find out more about John McCutcheon and his latest release "To Everyone In All The World: A Celebration Of Pete Seeger," please visit folkmusic.com.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Beach Boys Brian Wilson And Al Jardine Spread Christmas Cheer At The Toyota Oakdale Theatre

Legendary singer/songwriter and founding member of The Beach Boys, Brian Wilson, along with his 10-piece backing band strolled into the Toyota Oakdale Theatre Saturday night to spread Christmas cheer. He is currently in the midst of his holiday tour, which finds the artist, with fellow Beach Boy, Al Jardine and his band, performing the entire Beach Boys' "Christmas Album."

As the band took their positions, Brian Wilson was helped to his rightful place at center stage, right behind his white piano. The night kicked off with Brian singing lead on the Beach Boys' classic Christmas single "Little Saint Nick." The harmonies of his band are simply amazing, as displayed during the songs "The Man With All The Toys" and "We Three Kings Of Orient Are."

The spotlight was also shared by former Beach Boy, Blondie Chaplin for his performance of "Merry Christmas Baby" and the reggae-infused version of "Blue Christmas." Soulful falsetto singer Rob Bonfiglio laid down a perfect rendition of "I'll Be Home For Christmas," as his Carl Wilson-like vocals were the perfect support for Brian Wilson and Al Jardine's singing.

Jardine would introduce a couple of tracks that were recorded back in the seventies for a Beach Boys Christmas album that was never released, as he sang lead on "Winter Symphony" and Wilson on "Christmas Time Is Here Again." Wilson would also perform a couple of originals ("Christmasey" and "On Christmas Day") from his 2005 solo holiday album.

After a rocking version of "Run Rudolph Run," lead by Blondie Chaplin's guitar work, the music of The Beach Boys would take over, beginning with "Wouldn't It Be Nice" and "Sloop John B." A heartfelt rendition of "God Only Knows," sung by Wilson, and the summer vibe of "Good Vibrations" got the audience standing with applause. They stayed up to dance along to the classics "Help Me Rhonda," "Surfin' U.S.A." and "Fun, Fun, Fun," before settling back down for a beautiful rendition of "White Christmas." The night concluded with everyone, including the opening act, Beats Root Revival, gathering around Wilson's piano for an acapella version of "Auld Lang Syne." With a backing band as amazing as the one, the music of Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys will continue to live on forever.

Setlist: Little Saint Nick, The Man With All The Toys, Santa's Beard, Merry Christmas Baby, Christmas Day, Frosty The Snowman, We Three Kings Of Orient Are, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, I'll Be Home For Christmas, Blue Christmas, Christmasey, On Christmas Day, Winter Symphony, Christmas Time Is Here Again, O Holy Night, Run Rudolph Run, Wouldn't It Be Nice, Sloop John B, God Only Knows, Good Vibrations, Help Me Rhonda, Barbara Ann, Surfin' U.S.A., Fun Fun Fun, White Christmas, Auld Lang Syne

Saturday, December 8, 2018

"Dare To Be Different" Documentary Pays Homage To Cutting Edge Long Island Radio Station

Arriving December 7th on DVD and digital formats is the new documentary "New Wave: Dare To Be Different." The film is about the story of one of the most influential radio stations in America, WLIR in Long Island, NY. While not being able to compete with the country-wide radio stations of its time, WLIR took a risk and starting playing the music of some underground rock bands at the time, like U2, Talking Heads and R.E.M, just to name a few from a long, long list of artists.

Director Ellen Goldfarb uses classic new footage and videos, mixed with recent interviews about everyone praising the radio station, in order to tell a modern story of David vs. Goliath. In 1982, the station changed their format, which switched from playing music by classic pop acts like The Beatles and The Monkees, to music by new wave rockers like Billy Idol and The Pretenders. New interviews with artists like Idol, Thomas Dolby and Dave Wakeling, along with former WLIR DJs explained that their popularity came about by what the BBC was not playing on their radio stations. It allowed for this small radio station to invite the second coming of the British Invasion.

This station was one of the first in the U.S. to play songs by then unknown artists like Blondie, Madonna, Prince and even started to blur the lines between rock, pop and new wave music. Hearing the stories first hand from those who worked at the radio station is priceless. The music that WLIR was playing on the radio started spilling into the club scene in the '80's and life was good for everyone involved, that was until the station was forced to shut down in 1987.

This film is also a great reminder as to how important radio was during the '80's decade and how it help many of today's popular bands break through into the mainstream. To find out more about this new documentary "New Wave: Dare To Be Different," please visit newwavedaretobedifferent.com.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Renaissance Are On "A Symphonic Journey" With Their New Live Release

The English progressive rock band, Renaissance continues to amaze audiences all around the world. The band's history dates back nearly fifty years, but they felt renewed on their latest tour, last year, which was captured for a new 2-CD/DVD release titled "A Symphonic Journey." It was recorded at the Keswick Theatre in Glenside, PA in October 2017 and showcases the band covering their classic material, but this time with the specially assembled Renaissance Chamber Orchestra.

The 11-track set begins with the orchestra warming up the crowd with the "Prologue," as lead singer Annie Haslam joins in with her voice as her instrument. Renaissance then dive back to the mid-seventies for a wonderful rendition of "Trip To The Fair," as the addition of the orchestra fills in on the instrumentation perfectly. They stick to that decade with the classical/pop feel of "Carpet Of The Sun" and the gentle ballad "At The Harbour." They close out the first half of the show with the twelve-minute progressive masterpiece, "Symphony Of Light."

Renaissance touch upon one of their earliest tracks with the acoustic, folk-based harmonies of "Island," before delivering one of the show's highlights, a magical ten-minute version of "Mother Russia," which showcases the orchestra wonderfully. They finish up their show with the epic power of "Song For All Seasons" and grace of "Ashes Are Burning." To find out more about Renaissance and their latest live release "A Symphonic Journey," please visit cherryred.co.uk.