The Hunts Live at The McKinney Performing Arts Center: Amazing!

5280Last month I had the immense joy of seeing The Hunts live at the McKinney Performing Arts Center. This was a phenomenal concert, and one of the best evenings I’ve ever had!

The Hunts are seven siblings that comprise a fabulous Alternative-Folk band from Chesapeake, Virginia. Their music style is influenced by a mix of their mother’s classical violin lessons, their father’s taste in 70’s/80’s music and self-taught guitar skills, and all seven’s varying music preferences. This, and a lyric inspiring childhood, creates the beautiful, rock out, from the heart, and completely original take on music that The Hunts play.

We sat down in McKinney’s historic Colin County courthouse and waited for the show to begin. The lights dimmed as a piano and electric guitar began to slowly introduce the room to “Illuminate“. With Josh’s raw and honest way of singing, their music’s soul-stirring orchestration, and some of the most heartfelt and profound lyrics I have ever heard, it was amazing to see this song performed live.5456

Their ceaseless joy and unity onstage showed throughout their concert, but it was at its sweetest during “Valentina“: a lovely song written about a girl they met while hosting a summer music camp for children in Haiti. I knew that this was Josh Hunt’s favorite at the time from him telling me in our interview, and it showed as his face became far more animated for that song. Seeing their happy faces light up thinking about her made it impossible for the audience to not smile.5278

The same joy and unity can be said about “Lifting The Sea“. Jenni explained how they wrote it about their dreams to travel and how through their music they’ve been able to do so. It was something of a sweet comradery as all of them, dreamy-eyed, harmonized the story of their wanderlust and dreams come true. I had chills it was so wonderful.5330#2

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From their cheeky sibling banter to even drumming on the dining room chair, seeing how much fun The Hunts had during their concert made the show that much more enjoyable! I loved hearing Jordan sing “Next To Me” partly because it’s so fun and happy I wish this could be the soundtrack to my life, and partly because of Josh pointing out that the seven of them whistling in this song reminded him of the seven dwarfs. This spurred on a question of which dwarf he’d be, to that one of them replied with a mischievous “Choose wisely”.  😀5507

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The sisters Jessi and Jenni took the stage to croon a more-than-lovely cover of Elvis Presley’s “Can Help Falling In Love” dedicated to Jessi’s at the time fiancé, now husband. These girls have the prettiest voices! Their breathtaking timbres and glorious harmonies make my soul faint! *sigh* It was adorable seeing their sweet smiles and knowing glances to each other throughout the song. 5503

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I thought the night couldn’t get any better than what I had experienced so far. Oh how wrong was I! What came soon after but the amazement that is “Above the Storm” composed by Jonathan Hunt. Its awe-striking orchestration, building crescendos, and awakening harmonies pulsed the room with adrenaline. It soon flowed into a cheery and rhythmic melody, that gracefully melted into a heavy minor chorded piano solo rather akin to Hoizer. This song is epic bliss to say the very least.5815

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After that gloriousness my night continued to be wonderful with an emotion-filled performance of “Douse The Flame“. Its stunning violins and passionate lyrics of how dear their past is pulled at my heart! “…Still adventure seems to storm our very bones! We were young, but I’ll remember the clouds stampeding as my heart was overthrown!…” It was beautiful!5564

I was like a small child by the end of the night with my enthrallment and joy of each coming song. Especially so when they played the one song I had to watch and not take notes on; the one I wanted to enjoy (and shout the words to the top of my lungs). None other than, “Make This Leap”. This song is so extraordinarily better live! Being able to see the dance of music before me is something that you’ll have to see live to understand. *sighs* It was perfect!5693

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With a final performance of “Ages” I was thrilled. They totally rocked this country-style anthem with their building cries and stamping feet. I was overwhelmed with amazement! And can I say seeing Jessi rock out strumming on a banjo, was awesome! Their ending harmonies were heavenly to behold and it flawlessly caped off my evening.5902

I was in an elated state at the end of this concert, but that skyrocketed when we were able to get not just an encore song, but the best performance of “Folsom Prison Blues” I have ever heard in my life! With Jenni’s hot country vocals, Jonathan’s killer piano solo, and Jessi’s fiddling making strings of her bow, it was spectacular! I must say, I no longer feel this song is complete without a mandolin, but I don’t think anyone can fill that role for this song better than Jamison Hunt.

To top off this gloriousness the siblings called onstage their guitar-god of a father, Mr. Clint Hunt! This man has learned to play guitar by ear, and he is one of the best guitarists I have ever seen live, and I’ve seen many excellent guitarists before! (Can I learn how to play guitar like him?) It was a gorgeous moment, and one that Johnny Cash would certainly be proud of!5941

This show was an absolute gift! I had an amazing time and my one complaint about their show is that it had to end! The Hunts’ wisdom and emotion is astonishing, and their extreme passion and love for music inspires me greatly. The best part is how humble The Hunts are. Something Jenni said while thanking the audience for coming out really showed their humility, “We’re just seven kids from Virginia who play music“, and I love how after I can run out of words to describe their *pick a word that means really good, and place here*-ness, they are so down to earth and some of the kindest people you’ll meet. You will not be disappointed at their concert. GO SEE THE HUNTS!

Thank you so much to Sandy, Clint, Jessi, Jenni Dowling, Josh, Jonathan, Jordan, Justin, and Jamison Hunt. I had a wonderful evening and I can’t wait until you all come back to Dallas!

You can find The Hunts on: Facebook, Twitter, Spotify, and at thehuntsmusic.com. Click here for tour dates to see if this awesome band will be coming near you.

Many thanks to Sarah Forshaw of Forshaw Photography for letting me use your pictures from that night! All images in this post are hers. You can find Forshaw Photography on: Facebook and at sarahforshaw.wordpress.com

Happy Saturday! -Gems of Genres

 

The Point of Music

Do you ever wonder what the point of music is? You cannot see, taste, smell, or touch music. It cannot provide nourishment, strength, shelter, light, warmth, protection, or any other fundamental necessity. So why is this intangible arrangement of sounds to a rhythm so loved by people on this earth?

In all continents, countries, and cultures music is there. Throughout the past music had its place: the ballads of medieval minstrels, sea shanties of pirates, fight songs of warriors, psalms of biblical times even! About every event in a person’s life has music: birthdays, funerals, sleepovers, prom nights, ballet recitals, road trips, all these things would have far less meaning without music. In most all religions and religious services music has its place there as well.

Clearly in human society music is important, but why is that? What is the point of this arrangement of sound?

I did some research to find out scientifically why music is so enjoyed. To summarize, I came to this: Music, when enjoyed, causes dopamine (the “happy hormone”) to be released into a part of our brain that deals with stimulation called the striatum. So basically music makes us happy because it stimulates part of our brain. Why does it stimulate? There must be more of an answer to the point of music than stimulation. I’ve never heard a musician say there main goal as an artist is to stimulate their fans brains, (honestly that sounds a really creepy). So what is the point of music? What is music’s purpose?

Music is

The point of music is connection. It is emotion. It is relationship. Music is a tool used by all peoples to simply communicate their feelings. Music is a universal language. If you played a minor and a major chord to a complete foreigner I can guarantee they could tell the difference in mood. Though every Gaelic lament I hear I know none of the words, but I still know it’s sad.

Music can express the deepest feelings and the most complicated emotions. Music can show the fiercest rage, the most blissful love, the harshest sorrow. Music is a thing of relating. If one cannot find the right words, odds are there’s a song that can help you express your meaning.

Music connects our mind with thoughts, our body with rhythm, and our souls with emotion. Music can join multiple souls together. Perhaps music is the sound our soul makes, but to know that I’d have to be God…(I’m not, in case you were wondering 😛 )

So that is the point of music, in my eyes. Do you see music differently? What are some songs that connect to you most?

I hope you all enjoyed this post. Have a happy and musical Thursday! -Gems of Genres

Go and See The Hunts DFW Concert! Plus Interview with Josh Hunt

All DFW Metroplex population and then some! Are you searching for an awesome concert to go to this month? If so, you have to go and see The Hunts live at Mckinney Performing Arts Center on September, 18th. (Click here for details)

“But I know nothing about this band,” you say? Well then, let me tell you! 🙂

Seven, multi-instrumentalists, with breathtaking harmonies, who are also siblings, The Hunts are a Virginia-based Alternative-Folk band. Their music is spirited and from the heart; always with a bright message. It is deep and wise, yet innocent and simple, and altogether beautiful.

The Hunts

I had the privilege of asking lead-singer and eldest brother Josh Hunt a few questions, via email, before they come to Texas for the show.

Q: What do you enjoy most about being a musician?

A. My love for being a musician stems from my love for music. That sounds obvious, but it stands true. Above all the perks that I’ve experienced from being a musician, there is a genuine love and intrigue I have towards music.”

Q: How does being on tour with your siblings effect your relationships with each other, both positively and negatively?

B. Touring with my family is gratifying and a ways that we’ve created many of our fondest memories. Our relationships growing up have always existed in tight living spaces. For example, all seven of us shared a single bathroom throughout our childhood. We collectively understand that touring is possible through solid relationships that involve care and forgiveness.”

Q: What is the story behind the song “Make This Leap”? 

C. Make this leap is mostly inspired by our childhood. The sounds and many of the lyrics to this song and the rest of the album for that matter were written to capture the emotion behind our memories and adventures as children.”

Q: What is your favorite song to perform?

D. My favorite song to perform often varies… Last month it was “Douse The Flame”, a slower beautiful song that is also reminiscent of the effect of past years, and years gone by. This month it has been Valentina. Valentina (written about an orphan we met in Haiti) holds so much meaning. Experiencing the joy and courage of this girl has effected us significantly and recalling the experiences by playing Valentina is a pleasure.”

(In 2013, three years after the devastating earthquake in Haiti, The Hunts along with a two cousins and a friend, went to “impact and bless the lives of children in impoverished and unfortunate conditions through music and teaching.” Their time spent is beautifully told in this video. )

Q: Is there a question you would like to be asked?

E. See C

Q: As a musician, is there anything specific you have, or would like to accomplish?

My goal as a musician is to be as genuine and true to myself throughout my career as I possibly can. Music shouldn’t be made in a factory. That often defeats the purpose and emotion of it. The Hunts style of writing and the effort and meaning we put into each song is something I’d like to maintain.” -Josh Hunt

I think that last answer truly shows the heart of this band. The one thing that makes me addicted to someone’s music is if you can feel it, and with The Hunts you most certainly can. Their music is true, and laced with meaning and emotion; the way music should be!

I really hope you all come out and see the Hunts live because their music is amazing! Purchase tickets to The Hunts Live at McKinney Performing Arts Center here. If you would like to see The Hunts in concert, but don’t live in the DFW area click here to see their tour dates.

You can find The Hunts on FacebookTwitter and at thehuntsmusic.com. If you want to here more of their awesome music give them a follow on Spotify.

(Part 2) A Night at Poor David’s Pub with Emmet Cahill

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Recently while visiting a friend in Texas I had the pleasure of seeing Emmet Cahill, String Theory and Ireland Harber perform live at Poor David’s Pub in Dallas.

For those of you who don’t know Emmet Cahill is a fantastic, classically trained, Irish tenor and former member of world renown singing group Celtic Thunder. He began music at the age of four with lessons from his father and then went on in life to receive his formal training and a Degree of Musical Performance from the Royal Irish Academy of Music, (not many can put that on their resume!). After three years of world touring with Celtic Thunder, Cahill resigned to pursue his solo career, which lead me to this wonderful evening.

After an amazing opening act led by Nathan Kenedy and Jesse Ramirez, it was time for Cahill to begin. Now, to start I was more excited about visiting my friend than I was about seeing Emmet perform, this lead me to sorely underestimate his talent.

With Seamus Brett on piano, Cahill began his set with “Go the Distance”, immediately I was swept away into the song. On top of his extreme grace and control one of Cahill’s best qualities is how he acts with his song, he felt it, and in return every audience member felt the song as well. This especially showed during “Some Enchanted Evening”, as the whole room became an old black and white film with Cahill as the star.

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One thing I loved was how genuine Cahill was as he interacted with the audience. We were asked to all join in on “Spanish Lady” where you could see he was truly enjoying the moment; And after someone suggested he sing “My Irish Molly” he replied to them with a charming grin, “Ohhhh. Molly?” his Irish getting thicker, “…Well, only if you all clap with.”

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By the sixth song of the night in my notes it literally says, “Song 6: ‘The Book of Love’, At this point I am enjoying it too much to write. Go see him!” His concert was so good I just wanted to enjoy it, and I most certainly did!

It was during Cahill’s moving rendition of “Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears” that I myself was moved to tears, and I want you readers to understand I have never cried because of a song. But as lovely and sad as “Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears” was the one song that most moved me, and I feel was Cahill’s best, was his beautiful performance of the Les Miserables song “Bring Him Home”. In that moment Cahill really was Jean Valjean pleading to God for Marius. For the audience members he wasn’t just acting, he was. Here I had chills and I cried even more.

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He broke the mournful beauty with “When Irish Eyes are Smiling” only to bring us back to tears with a final performance of “Danny Boy” (If you were at this show and are wondering, yes the person blubbering behind you was I).

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Perhaps Cahill has missed his calling as an actor…but than again if he were I couldn’t have seen this amazing show. His talent is not only in his gorgeous voice but also in his moving and truly Irish way of telling the story. If Cahill is ever in town near you buy tickets to his show. You will completely enjoy your evening!

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Thank you Emmet for the wonderful show and well done.

Click here for part one of A Night at Poor David’s with String Theory and Ireland Harber.

You can find Emmet Cahill on Facebook, Twitter and at his website www.emmetcahill.com/ (where you should buy some tickets :D)

A very special thank you to the lovely Amanda Grace for letting me use your pictures! All pictures in this post are hers. If you readers are in the Salisbury, Maryland area and need a photographer get this woman to do your pictures! You can find Amanda Grace and her photography business Gilded Isle on Facebook, Instgram @glidedisle, and at gildedisle.com

Dé Luain sásta-Gems of Genres

(Part 1) A Night at Poor David’s with String Theory and Ireland Harber

Recently while visiting a friend in Texas I had the pleasure of seeing Emmet Cahill, String Theory and Ireland Harber perform live at Poor David’s Pub in Dallas. This is a two-part blog series because there was so much talent it was just too big for one post.

For this series I was fortunate enough gain use of pictures from that night taken by the incredible Amanda Grace of Gilded Isle Photography! All images used in this series are hers.

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After a lovely Q&A/meet and greet with Emmet Cahill before the opening act, we sat down to watch the amazement that is String Theory! This band is made up of University of North Texas graduate Jesse Ramirez on guitar, and North Texas School of Irish Music student Nathan Kennedy on fiddle.

What first caught my eye was their perfect rhythm and synchronization, as both  played so naturally like that was the only thing their arms were made for. These lads are Celtic instrumental at its finest! As I sat there listening I wished this could be the soundtrack to me horseback ridding through Irish moorland (I have artsy dreams, okay?).

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I was most impressed by Kennedy’s fiddling. During each song he added so much emotion and narrative with his well-seasoned playing, then to my amazement I learned that Kennedy was only thirteen years old! This lad has talent beyond his years. I am completely proud to say that Kennedy was just recently in Ireland competing in the world championships of Irish music, the Fleadh Cheoil! Kennedy is the first Texas youth fiddler to qualify and compete in this championship!

For those of you lucky enough to live in the Dallas Fort-Worth Metroplex, stop by The Celt Irish Pub where String Theory frequent. These lads put on an incredible show!

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After Emmet Cahill did a few songs, Ireland Harber, another member of the North Texas School of Irish Music, came up on stage to sing. The whole room stilled as she told the beautifully mournful and truly Celtic ballad “The Last Rose of Summer” with a grace that many professional singers lack.

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At the end of her song, Cahill broke the room’s stillness with a proud “She’s ten” and proceeded to gush on her talent saying how it was, “The best performance of that song I’ve seen, and I’m not just saying that ’cause you’re here.” I have only seen this song performed that one time but I can most certainly say that it was breathtaking.

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For her last song Harber joined Cahill in “Go Lasse Go”. Her gorgeous harmonies alongside her sweet and truly Celtic voice, stole the hearts of all who listened. I was also extremely impressed by how relaxed Harber was onstage, even down to interacting with the audience. This lass will go places!

These people have been some of my favorite opening and guest artists, and I can’t wait until they have opening artists of their own.

Click here for part two of A Night at Poor David’s with Emmet Cahill

You can find:

String Theory on Facebook

Jesse Ramirez on Facebook and jesse-ramirez.com

Ireland Harber and Nathan Kennedy in their Irish Folk band Innisfall on Facebook.

North Texas School of Irish Music on Facebook and at schoolofirishmusic.org

Legit Photographer Amanda Grace on Facebook, Instagram @gildedisle and gildedisle.com

Dé Luain sásta– Gems of Genres

Top 5 Songs I Never Get Tired Of

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Do you have a song that you never get tired of? That you unashamedly “play to death”. And do you ever get happy when that song gets stuck in your head? Well I know I do. Here is a list of my Top 5 Songs I Never Get Tired Of:

 

#5: “Jailhouse Rock” by Elvis Presley

Every time I hear this song I immediately feel cool, (And unashamedly do the twist to). This is by far my favorite song the The King did. Written in 1957 by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, “Jailhouse Rock” was written for Presley’s third motion picture by the same name. “Jailhouse Rock” reached #1 on U.S. Billboard charts and stayed there for seven weeks! And in early ’58 it stayed at #1 for three weeks in UK charts. But this song’s popularity is no wonder considering its rocking beat and catchy tune, and of course its illustrative lyrics.

 

#4: “If The Gaff Don’t Let Us Down” by Skinny Lister

This hit by English Punk-Folk band Skinny Lister always makes me smile! It’s so happy! “If The Gaff Don’t Let Us Down” tells a beautiful story about sailing to one’s love. (This song is guaranteed to make every gal wish her lad had half this much class 😉 ) I love the happy melody and the great beat this song has. “If The Gaff Don’t Let Us Down” is from Skinny Lister’s awesome debut album “Forge and Flagon” check it out.

 

#3: “Love Me Or Leave Me” cover by Regina Spektor

This cover of “Love Me Or Leave Me” is from the Boardwalk Empire Vol. 3 Soundtrack. I can’t get over this song it’s so good! Spektor’s voice flawlessly portrays the frustration and desparity that waiting on someone to choose you can have. She perfects the 20’s Blues sound with her gentle yet pained voice. *Sighs* This woman should get some sort of award for this song!

“Love Me Or Leave Me” was originally written by Walter Donaldson and Gus Khan for the Broadway production of “Whoopee”, and sung by Ruth Etting. It has been recorded by over fifty artists in its years of existence, however (in my opinion), Regina Spektor’s cover is by far the best.

 

#4 “Precious” by JD McPherson

This song, it gets me every time. I would easily compare this song to a religious experience. Honestly if someone told me this was a hymn I wouldn’t doubt them. McPherson has done it again with this gorgeous piece from his latest album “Let The Good Times Roll“. If you can’t get through this song without at least chills, then you aren’t even human! Every time I hear this line:

“What does it mean when your blood vibrates? I thought it was a bad sign. There was a word I never tried to speak, now it’s a battle cry! It’s so precious, precious to me,…”

*Wipes tears away from eyes* For the first time I am rendered speechless. (And that doesn’t happen! One of my biggest problems in school was that I couldn’t summarize!) All I can say is listen to this song. It’s so beautiful!

 

#1 “Wild Woman” by Imelda May

My jam! From her latest album “Tribal“, Imelda May’s “Wild Woman” is the best song to rock out to. I mean full on rocking out: blaring the speakers, running through room, hair down, shouting at the top of your lungs, and air-guitar, complete with a dance routine. (Oh you think that’s the video? Haha, no that’s me while listening to this song! 😛 ) May wrote the song about how no matter how much you try in life to conform to society’s rules and responsibilities there is still that Wild Woman inside you, ready to burst out at any time! I think the reason I like this song so much is because I’m not a wild person, but this song provides the perfect opportunity to act as crazy as you like, (With curtains drawn of course!)

 

Even though these songs are in order, I still can’t say that one is better than the other. There all so good!

I hope you guys enjoyed this post! Do you have any songs that you never get tired of? Are any of these songs new favorites for you? If so please comment and let me know! Also drop a comment if there are any bands or musicians you’d like a review on.

 

Keep on Rockin’, Rollin’ and Jivin’!

Gems of Genres 😀

 

Kitty, Daisy and Lewis: A Rockin’ Rhythm and Blues Trio

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Kentish Town trio Kitty, Daisy & Lewis have a vintage groove of Rhythm & Blues, Hawaiian, and Rock ‘n’ Roll that make you want to dance ’till the nights end. What started out as three siblings playing music in their front room has now turned into world-wide phenomenon, as KD&L have gained a fan base in America, most all of Europe, Australia, and even parts of Asia. But that’s no wonder considering their infectious sound of sleazy trumpet, muted slide guitar licks, grooving base vibes, and that enticing snare drum that convinces all to put on their dancing shoes.

Between the three of them Kitty, Daisy & Lewis play a variety of instruments including Guitar, Piano, Drums, Harmonica, Lap Steel, Ukulele, Banjo, Xylophone, Trombone, and Accordion. On top of that Lewis has an extensive collection of vintage recording equipment which he uses in their home studio. All of KD&L’s music is recorded analogue on 8-track tape machines; No computers or digital recording equipment is ever used, giving KD&L a rawer, more natural sound, almost like they’re playing right there in the room.

In addition to the three siblings Kitty, Daisy & Lewis are joined by parents Ingrid Weiss on Bass and Daddy Grazz on Acoustic Guitar, and legendary Jamaican Trumpet player Eddie “Tan Tan” Thornton.

KD&L are signed to BBC Radio DJ, Rob Da Bank’s record label Sunday Best. Sunday Best has signed artists such as Ben Ottewell, Skinny Lister, and even David Lynch.

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Kitty, Daisy & Lewis have recently released their third studio album “Kitty, Daisy & Lewis The Third”. Long-time fan Mick Jones (The Clash) has co-produced the new album.

“With Mick on board, it was the first time we have worked with a producer,” says Lewis, “Just having someone else in the room meant we could start bouncing ideas off other people and that was great.”

Take a listen to their hit single “Baby Bye Bye”, which has gained high acclaim as BBC Radio 1’s Record of the Week.

Kitty, Daisy & Lewis are some of the most talented young artists I can think of. Their music brings all the good of the past, and makes it fit the 21 century.

You can order “Kitty, Daisy and Lewis The Third” here on Amazon and ITunes as well as their other awesome music. You can find KD&L on Facebook, Twitter, and at kittydaisyandlewis.com

Keep on Rockin’

Gems of Genres

I Am Still Alive

Why hello my readers, do you still remember me? Much apologies for the lack of writing over the past months, but Thanksgiving, Christmas, friends visiting, New Years, and a move have kept me busy since we last chatted. Well, I am still alive. I have not fallen off a cliff, or anything tragic like that, I just have a life. Haha!

Good news though, things have settled down for me and I shall soon begin posting! Hooray! Perhaps by next week I shall have a post up!

Keep a look out for future artist features on: Rebecca Harkin, The O’s, The Subways, Kitty Daisy and Lewis, and so many more.

To quench your musical thirst for the time being, here is a song that I have been absolutely obsessed with from JD McPherson’s much anticipated second album “Let The Good Times Roll”. The albums release date is February, 10, 2015. You can pre-order Let The Good Times Roll here.

JD McPherson: Bossy

You can find JD McPherson on Facebook, Twitter, and at jdmcpherson.com

Thank you all for your support. Best wishes and a MerryThankfulNew Holiday thing, and any other red letter days I’ve missed.

Keep on Rockin’,

Gems of Genres

Grant Lee-Phillips: A Folksy Troubadour with many Stories

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Singer-songwriter, Grant Lee Phillips has a way of telling stories you want to hear. His genre is Folk, edging towards Country, along with many Ballads. His sound is comparable to Van Morrison, Neil Young, The Head and Heart, and even an early Bob Dylan.

Phillips’ music puts you in a whirlwind of amazement. His smooth and smoky croon suddenly changes to a harmonizing falsetto, as the fiddle howls in tune with the twelve-string guitar’s rhythmic canter; The banjo twangs a plucky melody, while his story unfolds.

Even though Phillips has so much talent in his songwriting, the fact that he is a multi-instrumentalist, (Capable of playing guitar, bass, mandolin, synthesizer, and harmonica, for a short list), only adds to his envious skill.

Take a listen:

Mona Lisa” “Buried Treasure

One thing I love about his most recent album “Walking in the Green Corn” (2012), is glphow well incorporated his Muscogee heritage is. Many of the songs are based off Native legends and history, and how those stories continue to influence, and be of use in today’s life.

Take his song “The Straighten Outer” for example,

“…Hammer of the straighten outer, working overtime. And all the world’s a rattle snake; Waiting to unwind. And all the world needs setting straight, In his crooked mind…” Is a perfect example of how this world has problems needing to be faced and dealt with.

Or “Buffalo Hearts“, and its evocative image of the Trail of Tears, “…Remember the ones. Traveled so far. All that was lost on that walk…”

  “After becoming a father, I wanted to be able to answer all those questions I know I’ll be asked one day, when my daughter takes an interest in where we come from,” says Phillips about his heritage.

GrantLeePhillipsPhillips’ is such an amazing musician, he should play in film…In fact he has. Grant has been on soundtracks for various TV shows, including “Bones”, “Grey’s Anatomy” and “How I Met Your Mother”. He even was given a role in the hit comedy “Gilmore Girls” as the town Troubadour, and much of his music was used for the soundtrack as well.

Phillips tells stories that have meaning, and depth. The message you gain from his music simply is, move on from the bad things of the past, not forgetting but always learning from, and make what you can of life. Make it good.

I’ll leave you guys with this song, “Walking in the Green Corn“.

You can find Grant Lee Phillips on Facebook, Twitter, Spotify, and at grantleephillips.com You can purchase his albums, including “Walking in the Green Corn”, here.

I hope you all enjoyed this post and have a musical week. 😀

Happy Monday!

 

Imelda May’s new album Tribal: Rebellious, Moving and full of Adrenaline

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Imelda May has just released her fourth studio album “Tribal”. I cannot begin to explain the excellence of this album. Named after the first song on the album, Tribal has every element that you would want in a CD: Punk, Rockabilly, Blues, Jazz, Ballads. (Yes she can do it all.) The Dubliner has certainly captured the meaning of her style of Rockin’ music. The rebellion, the community, the heartbreak, the joy, and the all around fun that music brings.

The first song “Tribal” tells of how, “It’s great to be different but have something to belong”.

“I wanted to write this song for a while ’cause I noticed how we all think we’re so clever and advanced, with our social media and all, but were all basically, pretty much the same as we have been, and we’re tribal. We’re drawn to each other, and we’re drawn to different gangs if you like…” “So that’s what I wrote about, we’re all in different tribes. So that’s that song. It’s all about my gang and yours,” says May.

This album certainly has “The Right Amount of Wrong” with songs like “Wild Woman”, “Hellfire Club”, and “Wicked Way” that pull you into the rebellion of May’s style. But that’s not the only aspect Tribal has. Songs like “It’s Good to be Alive” and “Little Pixie” show you that life is good and worth living for, regardless of the bad things. I think we oftentimes forget that.

“I just had my baby. I was up all night, I was so tired. Everybody else was asleep, and it was a long night. I was very happy with my baby of course, but anybody who’s had a new baby knows the sleep deprivation drives you insane. I remember lookin’ out the window and it was really really dark and there was a little chink of light, and bit by bit I just watched- I mean it sounds so typical, but just to watch the dawn comin’ up it really is amazing. It’s just one of those things that happens every day, but it was just so beautiful. I just watched the light comin’ up slowly and the sky filled with pink, and the boards came up and I thought ‘God it’s great to be alive. It’s really good to be alive!’ ” says May about her song.

Tribal, unlike her previous albums, May has co-produced with Mike Crossey, a well renowned producer/mix engineer. Crossey has done work for the likes of The Kooks, The Arctic Monkeys, and Jake Bugg, to name a few.

imelda may

One of the biggest problems I’ve had with May’s album is that it ends too soon. It’s so good I want it to last forever. Let’s just take a moment to appreciate May’s voice. Going from rich, sultry, blues in her song “Gypsy in Me”, to a haunting punk-rock ballad like “Hellfire Club”, that almost intimidates with the power and energy of her voice as she belts out her clever lyrics.

Then combine this with killer guitar licks that May’s husband, Darrel Higham, can create with his bare hands. Along with the rockin’ bass tones, all the emotional nuances made on trumpet, and a beat you can’t help but tap your feet to.

May puts every drop of emotion in her music. If it’s a sad heartbreaking blues, you feel it like you just got dumped. If it’s a joyful, uplifting ballad it makes your day bright. Either way you feel it, that’s what music should be. You should be able to relate to a song.

May has a way of making you part of the song, her music draws you in with the emotion, it moves you with the rhythm, and it makes you wonder what will happen next in the story.

Tribal is an excellent album. Good job May, and keep on rockin’.

 

You can find Imelda May on Facebook, Twitter and at http://imeldamay.co.uk/ You can purchase Tribal on ITunes and Amazon.