A Sound Recommendation: Singer-Songwriter Ryan Gibeau

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Ryan Gibeau, a New Hampshire native is a singer/songwriter residing in Brooklyn, New York. His stunning music is a concoction of heartfelt honest lyricism, soulful melancholy soundscapes and alternative pop/rock. Gibeau’s songwriting is an emotional and poignant documentation of a love lost. Through his use of powerful and authentic musicianship Gibeau has been resonating with listeners across the nation.

Gibeau’s debut album entitled Quiet Fall is an eclectic journey through style and mood, narrating a love story from start to finish. With essences of pop and alternative rock, the use of strings brings a unique flavor to the tracks. Thematically the album is about seeing the change you need, taking care of yourself and leaving behind what isn’t right for you. Sometimes we turn life against ourselves, play victim and it stops us from inspiring others. Quiet Fall is about empowering yourself, seeing that change is necessary and getting back up. Written as an immersive and meaningful album designed to inspire others to be your best self, Gibeau reveals “The album was inspired by a relationship kept together by two people suffering from emotional addiction, what it takes to leave and how to get back on your own feet”.

Leading single ‘Flying Away’ was written whilst flying to Los Angeles to leave behind an unhealthy on-again/off-again relationship. The act of finally and physically leaving allowed the lyrics and chords to almost fall out of Gibeau, essentially sonically journaling his experiences and emotions. ‘Flying Away’ highlights the songwriters signature style of beautiful string arrangements, organic instrumentation and raw vocals that tug on your heart strings.

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Room Gets Hotter’ features twangy guitars, smokey vocals and a throbbing bassline. Gibeau reveals, “The theme of my music centres around the concept of love. Often the music subconsciously surfaces and the songs write themselves. I love the exploration and discovery in my songwriting”.

Ryan Gibeau has found success performing to sold out audiences at some of the most prestigious venues in New York. He continues the next chapter of his musical endeavour with Quiet Fall set for release this month.

 

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New Music and Memoir from Jeff Tweedy

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Jeff Tweedy has released, WARM, a solo album of all new material via dBpm Records.

WARM was produced and recorded entirely by Jeff at Chicago’s now legendary studio, The Loft (with help from some of his usual collaborators – Spencer Tweedy, Glenn Kotche and Tom Schick).

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WARM follows the acoustic retrospective release, Together at Last (2017), and Wilco’s 2016 album, Schmilco.

Lead Single:  Some Birds

The incredible liner notes for WARM were written by George Saunders. Jeff’s long-awaited memoir, Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back): A Memoir of Recording and Discording with Wilco, Etc., is also now available.

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New Christmas Music Out From Rodney Crowell

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Rodney Crowell’s first ever Christmas album, Christmas Everywhere, was released earlier this month via New West Records.

The 12-song set of all original songs was produced by Dan Knobler and features guest appearances from Vince Gill, Lera Lynn, the poet Mary Karr, Brennen Leigh, and more.

Christmas Everywhere exhibits a unique and masterful approach to the traditional Christmas album from the legendary songwriter. While many selections exhibit the joy of the season, the collection also explores crass commercialization & loneliness exacerbated by the holidays, as well as songs co-written with his daughters and granddaughters.

Crowell has read Clement Clarke Moore’s legendary “‘Twas The Night Before Christmas” to his children, and now grandchildren, on Christmas Eve for the past forty one years. A masterful storyteller himself, Christmas Everywhere commences with the lyrical prelude “Clement’s Lament (We’ll See You In The Mall),” which sets the tone for the album with “Peace, peace, peace on earth, good will to one and all. The season starts in August now, we’ll see you in the mall.” The title track, a duet with Lera Lynn, includes a dream sequence in which she asks Santa for a time machine in which to go back and prevent John Lennon’s murder,” and the closing track, the endearing “All For Little Girls and Boys” was recorded in the early 80s and features his two oldest daughters.

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In celebration of Christmas Everywhere, Crowell will support Amy Grant & Vince Gill’s unprecedented twelve-night “Christmas at the Ryman” stand beginning tomorrow night in Nashville, TN. He has also announced additional tour dates throughout the Spring of next year (please see all dates below).

Of the album, Crowell says, “Since the arrival of my first child, the Crowell family has detonated forty-one Christmas bombs, discarding in that time-span enough wrapping-paper to be held accountable for the deforestation of, I’m guessing here, twenty-plus acres of prime timberland. In defense of our participation in the commercialization of baby Jesus’s birth, the best I can offer is the fact that for the last two decades we’ve conscientiously recycled the aftermath. A few years back it became evident to my family, and indeed myself, that I’d gone sour on all things related to Christmas, a source of particular disappointment to my wife, Claudia, whose creative flair peaked with the holidays. One rather warm December day in 2011, I heard on satellite radio, Hayes Carll’s soulfully written ‘Grateful for Christmas’ and was so moved by the song—it’s wry humor and bare-bones honesty—that I ditched whichever errand or appointment I’d set out on in favor of an honest-to-God Christmas shopping spree. Not only did ‘Grateful for Christmas’ jolt me out of a self-indulgent funk, it also tweaked my creative curiosity. I began mulling over the idea of writing an album’s worth of original Christmas songs. As far back as the early eighties, for fun and without bothering to put words down on paper, I’d made up with my two oldest daughters, Hannah and Caitlin, silly little Christmas songs that we’d sing around the house. ‘All For Little Girls and Boys’ is one of those tunes that somehow made it onto a cassette tape. Around the same time, in a proper studio, I recorded with my kids a carefree piece I’d written called ‘Very Merry Christmas,’ which, in lieu of Christmas cards, we sent out that year on cassette tape as well. Sometime around Christmas 2016, I came home to find my granddaughters, Addie and Iris—age ten and eight— sitting side-by-side and playing on our old upright piano a melody that to my ear sounded like something from the early nineteenth century. I asked them what song they were playing and in unison they replied, ‘something we just made up.’ I hit record on my iPhone and asked them to play it again. Using their melody almost entirely, I spent a couple of months composing the words to ‘Come Christmas.’ A generation had passed since I first made up a Christmas song with their mother.”

Fifty years after Crowell first started playing as a teen in Houston garage bands, he has moved into elder-statesman territory, and continues to extend the path carved out by the top-tier songwriters who preceded him. His songs have been recorded by country legends (Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, George Strait), to current country chart toppers (Tim McGraw, Keith Urban) to blues icons (Etta James) to rock and roll legends (Van Morrison, Bob Seger). He is a Grammy award winner, a member of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, recipient of the 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award for Songwriting from the Americana Music Association, and the author of his autobiography, the stunning Chinaberry Sidewalks.

AngloFiles: New Single From Indie Rocker Simon Waldram

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Indie Rocker from Chesterfield, Simon Waldram has released his debut single Life’s Forgotten Dream via Small Bear Records. 

The single, a dreamy slice of hypnotic melancholia, is a taster from Simon’s forthcoming album “Into The Blue” which is due out in early 2018.

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West Coast Beats: Denver Folk Rockers Dearling

 

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Denver-based quartet Dearling is set to release its new EP, Silver and Gold, on February 22, 2019.

Following the success of its debut album, Inheritance, the band knew that its second offering would have to be different and that it would need to challenge what they had already created. Silver and Gold is the result, and it hails back to band vocalist Rachel James’s modern country start in her musical career.

The first song that ever got me a real paycheck was a country tune,” she says. “I loved going back to that and creating songs that aren’t just love songs. A couple of these tunes are real stories, people deciding to do the right thing at the right time. It’s about the heroes we never talk about culturally. We idolize people for all sorts of reasons: fame, success, money, athletic ability. I wanted to sing and create some songs that promote those who give when no one is looking, without an agenda. They just live right.”

Dearling guitarist and vocalist Dave Preston recognized the shift in direction from the moment the recording process started. “We spent so much time thinking about each part on Silver and Gold,” he says. “Everything was so intentional. I’m singing a lot more than I have in the past, and it was a huge challenge. Rachel wrote songs that made sense for me to take on. This record is us in a totally different place and at a different level than we were with Inheritance. It’s more mature with a clearer sonic direction. There is still a deep sense of the Western sound that we all feel like we came from, but there is a lot more country in this group of songs. And with the lyrics, it just makes sense.” The band also got some help from guitarist Danny Burton on the song, “What I Don’t Need.

Rounding out the group are brothers and Denver music scene fixtures Joel and Noah Matthews, on drums and bass respectively. The band wrote, recorded, and mixed the record all on their own – an intense process that taught them a lot about the art of creating as a team. As Dearling has grown together, the music has become tighter, clearer, and more comfortable. The same values that guide good family guide the songs. Silver and Gold reflects Dearling’s values. It’s about real love and unsung heroes.

Being native to Colorado, to the West, to mountain ranges and vast open spaces, leads to the completely unique meaning and melodies of Dearling. It’s not about the style as much as it is about the sounds, tones, textures, and feelings that the Western wild inspires. It’s a place of vast weather changes, high highs and mellow lows. It’s a little rough and a little sweet, a little desert and a little rain. In love with Fleetwood Mac, Chris Stapleton, Emmylou Harris, and Travis Meadows, Dearling is boldly guitar-driven with true mainstream hooks. It’s Colorado country music: a little alternative, a little folk, a little rock, and very country, with as much soul in the lyrics as in the melodies.

Dearling band member and world-touring guitarist and artist Dave Preston has played with the likes of Justin Timberlake, Kelly Clarkson, and virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro. Still, he calls Dearling his musical home. “We are literally family, but even family doesn’t always play well together,” says Preston. “We do.” It’s the kind of family that has kept the band together happily since 2015, landing gigs at Red Rocks, playing with legends like Roberta Flack and Chris Isaac, and all while garnering a growing fan base.

Preston and Dearling bandmate (and lifemate) Rachel James met in the middle of Preston’s whirlwind career at a songwriter event in Denver. “I’ll never forget his extraordinary and unique guitar playing and songwriting,” James says. “He stopped the whole room with his song, ‘Rain Down.’ I had no idea who he was at the time, but I knew I would never forget him.” James didn’t forget him – soon the two were great friends, and she started taking guitar lessons from him, which led to something more. “We’d spent every lesson laughing hysterically, and I knew we had something special,” James recalls. “After a long string of bad relationships, Dave was my first great one. And he’ll be my last.” They gelled equally well on the music front. “Musically, he felt like a long-lost friend,” she recalls. “We were always going to do a project together. We just needed time to know it.”

The two married in 2014 and immediately began writing and creating together. James, an award-winning songwriter, had placed multiple songs with country and pop artists alike (Jess Moskaluke, FACE Vocal Band, Tyler Ward, etc.) and Preston had played in every genre and with major artists all over the world.

The band plans to tour in support of Silver and Gold, including a hometown album release show.

ARTIST LINKS

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A Sound Recommendation: Singer/ Songwriter and Activist Raye Zaragoza

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Photo: Ursula Vari

Raye Zaragoza is an award-winning singer-songwriter who carries an acoustic guitar and a message. Her quiet yet powerful song “In the River,” written in response to the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in North Dakota, resonated strongly with listeners and went viral in late 2016, garnering half a million views on the video, national media coverage, and a Global Music Award and Honesty Oscar.

Raye’s debut album, Fight For You (independent, 2017), displays her compassion, dedication to justice and equality for all, and keen eye for the seemingly small daily moments that become our most meaningful memories. About the record, Raye says, “This album is about finding yourself and finding your voice. It’s about maturing and realizing that you can make a difference if you so choose.”

Writing about social issues comes naturally to Raye. “As a woman of color in America, social issues are things you deal with and see every day of your life,” she says. “I write about my experience and oftentimes my existence has been laced with injustice.”

Raye performs her music all over the United States as well as across Europe, where she spent five weeks touring in summer 2017. Her music has been featured on Democracy Now! and on numerous lists of the best modern-day protest songs, including those by Paste Magazine, What Culture, and Overblown. 

At SXSW 2018, Raye spoke about her loyal fanbase and maintaining an independent career on a panel entitled “Serving the Sacred Bond” hosted by PledgeMusic. Zaragoza has just finished a national tour, where she was supporting Dispatch and Nahko and Medicine for the People, including dates at Red Rocks and Central Park Summerstage.  

ARTIST LINKS

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Devon Allman + Duane Betts Announce new 2019 Album/Tour

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After a successful year touring as The Devon Allman Project with special guest Duane Betts – the sons of Gregg Allman and Dickey Betts are joining forces to form The Allman Betts Band .

They will kick off 2019 with a new Allman Betts Band album and a worldwide tour that will feature new music, songs from their solo projects and classic Allman Brothers and Gregg Allman tunes in honor of the 50th Anniversary of The Allman Brothers Band. The new album, which is slated to be released in the Spring of 2019, will be produced by Matt Ross-Spang (Jason Isbell, Margo Price, John Prine and Elvis Presley).

TOUR DATES

The new ABB will include Devon, Duane, Berry Oakley Jr. (son of original Allman Brothers Band bassist Berry Oakley), slide guitar virtuoso, Johnny Stachela and DAP percussionists R. Scott Bryan (Sheryl Crow) and John Lum.

Peter Levin (Gregg Allman’s Hammond B3 player) and Chuck Leavell (former Allman Brothers Band keyboardist and current Rolling Stones keyboardist) will also appear on the record.

ARTIST LINKS

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