(Pictured – blueswoman Danielle Nicole.)
An occasional post wherein I scan the globe looking for new music to tickle your fancy. This time, a little bit of pop, some blues, and some scorching rockabilly. Truthfully some of these aren’t brand new but they were new to me and maybe to you. If you don’t have a lot of time or patience to listen to everything all the way through, give each one a taste.
Alice Merton was born in London but moved to Munich as a teenager. She’s a pretty worldly sort, having also lived in the US and Ontario at different times. In 2016 she won a newcomer award in Hamburg in the category of ‘acoustic pop.’
She started her own label, got a band and co-wrote and recorded a song called “No Roots,” a tribute of sorts to her peripatetic life. Billboard – “The rollicking, chest-thumping track itself reads like a roadmap, telling Merton’s story through a marching drum kick, rugged bass and the chorus’ chant of “I’ve got no roots, but my home was never on the ground.””
Soundcloud: The two members of In Light Of, Jason Greenberg, and Sandy Johnston, have never written a song together. That is, together in the same room or even the same city. All five songs on their debut EP, Little Treasures, were pieced together from ideas shared from one device to another, many kilometers away.
They were first brought together in 2013 when, thanks to an online job posting, Jason hired Sandy to join his music licensing company. Starting as colleagues they quickly bonded over a shared appetite for the kind of boundless sonic exploration found in post-rock (and the like) songwriting. But it wasn’t until Sandy moved five hours away that a musical project was first discussed.
For you post-rock aficionados, “Little Treasures.”
From Ruby Velle and the Soulphonics website: “Deep, raw funk. Stax-style Southern soul. Positively uplifting and original Motown-channeling anthems.” Yeah, baby.
The band started out in 2006 in Gainesville, FL in 2006, moving on to Atlanta. “Most bands like ours tend to hold onto that soul-revue formula—black suits with skinny ties, side steppin’ to the groove, gimmicky segues,” guitarist Scott Clayton says. “We’re moving into more modern elements of rock and pop through the lens of soul and classic R&B.”
“You might not expect it, but a lot of my affinity for singing comes from Paul Simon,” says Velle.” I want to be a story-teller with my singing. I’m not afraid to bring a folk mentality into the soul genre. We set ourselves apart with our lyrics and our unerring stance for positivity. We want to be a pillar of the soul genre, not just a representation of what it once was.”
Here’s the sultry, slinky “Broken Woman.”
Did someone say how about a nice blues with a female singer/bass player, some sinuous organ and great guitar work by guest Kenny Wayne Shepherd? I knew I heard that somewhere.
From her website: Founding member, lead singer, and bass player of Kansas City blues-rock band Trampled Under Foot, Danielle Nicole stepped out on her own in 2015 with her debut album Wolf Den. In 2018, Nicole returns with a follow-up release via Concord Records.
“I grew up playing the blues, and the blues is still a big part of what I do. But now I’m reaching out more and trying different things. It still sounds like me, but I’m stretching out a lot more than I have previously.” She won the Blues Foundation’s 2014 Blues Music Award for best instrumentalist, bass, the first woman to do so. Her drummer is Rodd Bland, son of blues legend Bobby “Blue” Bland.
This tasty little number is called “Save Me.”
Let’s hear it for the Go Getters, a Swedish rockabilly band that you’ve probably never heard of, have been around for years and sound like they just came out of Austin or Memphis or some other fucking place. Sure, why not.
From their FB page: In January of 1988, amidst the frozen badlands of Västerås, Sweden, a gang of Vikings decided to heat things up by forming a rockabilly trio. They would call themselves the Go Getters. 23 years later the ensuing inferno still rages like an oil fire in Texas!!!
Indeed. Check out “Love & Hate.”
“There’s a thin line baby
Between love and hate
There’s a thin line baby
Between love and hate
Once you cross that line
You know it’s way too late.”