New Music Revue – 2/6/19

Wherein I get off the oldies train and see what’s cookin’ now…

From his website: “Saxophonist, pianist and composer Michael “Cody” Dear, 23, was raised in Danville, California. Musical organizations that influenced his artistic development include Berkeley Jazzschool Advanced Jazz Workshop and various Honor Ensembles including the California All-state Jazz Band. Dear’s compositions are a cross-genre of R&B, Soul, and Funk, influenced by the improvisation elements of Jazz.”

My take? This is some funky, funky shit. Give a listen to Cody and his band rip it up on “S Rank.” There is, I think, some Average White Band in here and maybe a dab of Tom Scott:

Spotify link

From his website: “A staple of the Canadian arts scene for almost 20 years, Hawksley Workman (pictured on top of post) boasts a catalog of 15 solo releases showcasing his now signature spectrum of sonic influence, from cabaret to electro-pop to anthemic rock and plenty in between. The accolades amassed include JUNO (Canadian music award) nods and wins and widespread critical acclaim.

He’s also penned melodies with a myriad of artists, from Oscar award-winning Marion Cotillard to French rock icon Johnny Hallyday. Hawksley’s touring career has seen him play nearly a thousand shows worldwide. He’s headlined prestigious venues like Massey Hall in Toronto and The Olympia in Paris and opened for heroes Morrissey, David Bowie, and The Cure.”

I tell you what. This guy’s great a great voice and there’s something very U2-sounding about this if you dig that sort of thing. Here’s Hawksley doing “Lazy.”

Spotify link

Wikipedia: “Jorge Strunz, born in Costa Rica, and Ardeshir Farah, hailing from Iran, met in the United States in 1979. Jorge Strunz was one of the founders of the Latin jazz band Caldera. Caldera combined jazz, funk, and rock with a wide variety of Latin music, influenced by 1970s fusion explorers like Return to Forever and Weather Report.”

Their website describes their music as original multi-cultural acoustic instrumental improvisational guitar music – world jazz if you will. “Afro-Caribbean, Latin American folk, flamenco and Middle Eastern music converge in an essentially jazz context.”

This stuff gets me where I live. From their album Tales of Two Guitars comes “Firoozeh.”

Spotify link

From Mary Ann Vorasky’s press release: “Who Made It Be That Way’ tells the story of a girl growing up in a violent home who sought help from the church, only to be turned away. The song shines a light on the damage that abuse causes, and I hope it can help people heal and choose to no longer live with abuse, nor let it continue to limit their life choices.”

“One morning after falling asleep listening to the Fugees,” she advises, “everything I said or sang sounded Jamaican, but then I was reminded that Chrissie Hynde and Debbie Harry rapped in their rock songs.” The songwriter was relieved at her revelation.  It was time to stop studying and start recording!

The rap/hip-hop influences changed the rhythm and structure of the song: “What I love about this genre is that you’re not limited to a strict song format, so I was finally able to convey everything I wanted to convey in the song,” explains Mary Ann.

Here’s “Who Made it Be That Way,” a song of survival with a decided hip-hop flavor:

Gary Hoey hails from my wife’s hometown (and kids’ birthplace), Lowell, Massachusetts and initially made his reputation playing around Boston and New England. While never reaching the heights of fame of some of his peers, he is an excellent guitarist and has played with everyone from Brian May to Ted (“useless fuckhead”) Nugent to Peter Frampton.

Eric Gales is from Memphis, Tennessee and is another great under-the-radar blues guitarist who has put out a bunch of albums and played with everybody. Notably he played with Carlos Santana at Woodstock ’94 and contributed a cover of “May This Be Love” to the album Power of Soul: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix.

Hoey released an album called Neon Highway Blues and on this smokin’ tune – “Under the Rug” – Hoey and Gales put it all together:

Spotify link

Wikipedia: The folk-rock band McDermott’s Two Hours was formed in Brighton, England in 1986 from the remnants of two other bands, The Bliffs and The Crack, and featured a vigorous line-up of vocals, fiddles, whistles, bouzouki, acoustic and electric guitars, drums and bass.

Frontman Nick Burbridge named the band after Tommy McDermott*, who gained notoriety for his two-hour stint on Radio Free Derry, calling for peace and love during the Derry riots. (The so-called Battle of the Bogside, the “first significant confrontations of the Troubles.”)

“When writers wax lyrical about the rugged Celtic beauty that came to fruition with The Pogues and Shane MacGowan, they often seem to suggest that time has stood still and that Irish music had been sitting, waiting, since the mid-sixties ballad boom of The Dubliners et al for something suddenly to connect the urgency of punk with the heart and soul of traditional music.

But out in the rough and ready bars of Hamburg and a hundred other German hostelries, a band was carving out and whittling its own take on the beauty of Irish folk music; adding fire, vitality and punk-style energy while handling the travails of fights and frolics, women, dark streets and the drink.” (What more do you need?)

This is from the album Besieged or as it appears to be called, Besieged, McDermott’s 2 Hours vs Levellers vs. Oysterband. This is “Firebird.”

Spotify link

*”Tommy McDermott was a hippie,” Eamonn McCann remembers, “one of the few genuine hippies from the Bogside, and he was always preaching peace, as hippies do. And he got two hours on his own. He locked the door and didn’t come out and played the Incredible String Band for two hours and he would say, ‘“Hey, keep cool, don’t be fighting with the cats in the Fountain.'”- Dig With It, Radio Free Derry, 1969.

8 thoughts on “New Music Revue – 2/6/19

  1. Solid tunes Doc. Cody Dear is going on the spin list. Always liked Workman but haven’t gave him enough time (my fault). Hoey and Gales works for me. Just discovered Gales a while ago. Like him a lot. Hoey is another one I haven’t given enough time. The ‘Firebird’ cut does it foe me. Always like that style. Probably put it on the spin list for further listening. Strong tunes for me.

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    1. Really like Cody. Hot stuff. Sent this list to my sis. She dug his 70’s sound. Made her think of Weather Report although they weren’t so funky. Is Workman a well-known guy up in the Great White Frozen North? I hadn’t heard his name before? Glad you liked selection. It felt pretty strong to me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Workman is just a guy I’ve heard here and there over the years. Always solid stuff. Don’t know why I never invested more time (so many choices).
        It’s so cool to see people like Cody carrying that torch and carrying it with chops. Really dig it. Will be listening to him a lot more. Individuals like your Sis pull certain things out of music that hits them. Again I like that. Strong set.

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        1. Workman’s unknown here but boy he’s good. For a country that’s frozen over solid for 11 1/2 months of the year, you guys do pretty good. Cody’s good man. My sis has a good ear. Other guys like you talk about your older brother. I had an older sister. Her only “flaw” in this is she’s not much of a blues fan. But we’ll give her a pass. I’ve got a post on a saxophonist inspired by her probably next month.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Hawksley Workman I’ve heard before… bits and pieces… always worth listening to, but I’ve yet to delve into an album. Hoey and Gales needs some further exploration… I’m liking the sound of that…

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