A couple of weeks ago, I was invited by David and Paul to be their guest on their show, the HomegrownSunday Ramble on Homegrown Radio NJ. I’m never going to turn down the chance to hang out and talk about music, so of course I said yes.
They graciously gave me permission to share this episode of Homegrown Sunday Ramble on my feed. So enjoy! And when you’re done listening, mark your calendar to listen to their show on Sundaynights, from 7-9pm Eastern.
Go make some noise,
On episode 191 of the Americana Music Show, Candi Staton tells the story about her early days in music, how she met Rick Hall of FAME studios and plays tracks from Life Happens. Also on this episode, blues rock from Tommy Malone, country from Moot Davis, alt-folk from The Secret Sisters, soulful blues from Brigitte DeMeyer, honky tonk from John Howie Jr. and the Rosewood Bluff and retro soul from St. Paul & The Broken Bones.
In case you haven't run across her yet, allow me to introduce you to the music of MaryLeigh Roohan. She got her start playing in a pub in St. Andrews, Scotland and has been playing festivals in upstate New York the past couple of years. So she knows how to play to tough crowds and her music has developed into a sound that is strong, confident, modern, and beautiful all at once. She has released her second collection of songs. It's called Skin And Bone, and as you might expect from the title, it has some surprisingly dark undercurrents among the soaring vocals, the upbeat tempos, and the sunny arrangements. There are songs about the men she's toyed with, the men she's "left heartless" and the men she intends to go home with. It can be a little scary, but Skin And Bone is also one of the most engaging singer/songwriter albums I've heard in a good long while. I'm happy to announce that MaryLeigh Roohan's Skin And Bone albumis the giveaway album for May, courtesy of Fake Chapter Records.
“Shine Like A Diamond” from Dark Night Of The Soul by Jimbo Mathus is a from the gut, utterly sincere, love song as only he can sing it.
The world is still reeling form Tommy Malone's previous album Natural Born Days and now he releases another spot on album, Poor Boy. It's full of easy going relaxed, back porch kind of music. The music that cements friendships as everyone sings along. It's the kind of album you want to play at the end of a hard day's work to remind you life is pretty good even though you've got to work hard or maybe because you work hard. It's the get-in-touch album of the year as far as I'm concerned.
I'm adding "You May Laugh, "Pretty Pearls," "Mineral Girl," "All Dressed Up," and "Time To Move On."
Jimmy Smith, co-frontman for the now-on-hiatus The Gourds wins, year after year, the award for the most obtuse metaphors in a song. And I've been wanting to hear a solo album from him for years. Well, we didn't exactly get that in Budget Cuts, but he's got a new band called the Hard Pans. They describe themselves as:
"The Hard Pans' debut album BUDGET CUTS, with The Gourds' Claude Bernard and Jimmy Smith, also features new tunes by Gourds sound tech and guitarist, Mark Creaney. A collection of garage, roots, pub, and under-the-bridge rock n' roll."
Couldn't have said it better myself. And yes the metaphors are just as head-scratching as ever. Some of the tracks are from Jimmy, some from Mark Creaney who's also in the same school of songwriting.
Fun, boozy, not-to-serious stuff from soon to be poster kids for the Keep Ausitn Weird campaign.
I'm adding "Ain't Gonna Have It," "Fidel's Parking Lot," "Nobody Up Drinking (But Us)," and "Robin And Janey." There’s not that many contenders for the title of baddest bad ass country/rock/death metal / cowpunk band, maybe because Red Eye Gravy has that category won hands down. Red Eye Gravy’s latest, Dust Bowl Hangover, has got that I don’t give a shit attitude on every track and sometimes that’s just what you need to get you fired up to do Whatever Has To Be Done. And when those times hit you, I suggest you put this album on repeat and crank it up to 11.
I’m adding “Lonely Boy,” “Crackhead Lullaby,” “Hard Livin’ (Comes Easy to Me),” and “All the Marijuana.”
Preview Dust Bowl Hangover by Red Eye Gravy on Amazon.
Jacob Latham has proven himself to be an up and coming songwriter on his MidnightTrain EP. The short disc is full of earnest, enthusiastic ballads with plenty of riffy earworm hooks that come back to you again and again, long after you're done listening to the album. He knows how to balance all the elements of a song, so that the gentler sounds like the mandolin don't get drowned out by the harsher harmonica.
I'm adding the title track, "Midnight Train" to rotation.
You May Laugh / Tommy Malone / Poor Boy / 3:34
Pretty Pearls / Tommy Malone / Poor Boy / 3:33
Mineral Girl / Tommy Malone / Poor Boy / 4:03
All Dressed Up / Tommy Malone / Poor Boy / 4:25
Time To Move On / Tommy Malone / Poor Boy / 4:19
Meet Me in Milwaukee / Doghouse Flowers / Chasing the Sun / 5:12
Lost One Heart / Doghouse Flowers / Chasing the Sun / 4:40
Me and You / Doghouse Flowers / Chasing the Sun / 6:14
Lonely Boy / Red Eye Gravy / Dust Bowl Hangover / 2:40
Crackhead Lullaby / Red Eye Gravy / Dust Bowl Hangover / 2:53
All the Marijuana / Red Eye Gravy / Dust Bowl Hangover / 2:50
Goodbye Passing Fantasy / Grady Kelneck / Take My Hand / 2:53
Ain't Gonna Have It / Hard Pans / Budget Cuts / 3:35
Fidel's Parking Lot / Hard Pans / Budget Cuts / 2:39
Nobody Up Drinking (But Us) / Hard Pans / Budget Cuts / 4:38
About Calvin Powers
Calvin Powers is the host and producer of the Americana Music Show.