Love Canon – Cover Story

LOVE CANON brings their acoustic-roots sensibilities to the electronic-tinged pop hits of the 80’s and 90’s to create Cover Story, their 4th album, due out on Organic Records July 13, 2018. With Cover Story, LOVE CANON delivers a fresh set of classics, crossing genres to recount music of decades past from the likes of Peter Gabriel, Billy Joel, Depeche Mode, and Paul Simon. The self-produced album hosts a plethora of special guests including Jerry Douglas, Aoife O’Donovan, Keller Williams, Michael Cleveland, and Eric Krasno, among others.

The band’s diehard fans are music lovers first and are drawn to the charismatic and wide-ranging vocal stylings of lead singer and guitarist Jesse Harper matched with banjo master Adam Larrabee, mandolin pickin’ by Andy Thacker, Darrell Muller holding down the low-end on standup bass, and the slick sounds of resonator guitar king Jay Starling on the Beard MA-6. It’s acoustic rock! Acclaimed fiddler Alex Hargreaves [Turtle Island Quartet, Sarah Jarosz] does all of the fiddling on this record with the exception of two tracks, and he occasionally joins them on tour.

Amy Stroup – Helen of Memphis

Recorded partly in LA and partly in her adopted hometown of Nashville, Helen Of Memphis finds Stroup pushing her songwriting into bold new sonic territory, incorporating bright, electronic pop elements into groove and beat-driven tunes that absolutely bubble over with feminine empowerment and confidence – a concept partly inspired by her late grandmother’s love of fashion.

For a decade now, Stroup has been crafting the kind of songs that transport listeners with rich, emotional honesty and vivid storytelling. Her music has been featured in dozens of television shows, including This Is Us, Grey’s Anatomy, Parenthood, and The Walking Dead, as well major national ad campaigns for brands like Calvin Klein and Lexus. In addition to her critically acclaimed body of solo work, Stroup is also prolific collaborator, teaming up with Andrew Simple to record as Danger Twins (you’ve likely heard their songs in spots for Google, Universal Studios, and New Balance among others) and partnering with Trent Dabbs for Sugar & The Hi-Lows, a playfully retro duo that Rolling Stone said “built a bridge between the rootsy stomp of early Sun Records tunes and the harmonized swoon of old Brill Building pop songs.” The praise was universal and effusive for the Sugar & The Hi-Lows’ two LPs, with USA Today raving that “the only thing better than the bluesy, garage-rock guitars is Trent Dabbs and Amy Stroup’s vocal chemistry,” and Marie Claire swooning for “Stroup’s salted-caramel voice.”

Bernie Griffen and the Thin Men – Doors Wide Open

In his sixth decade Bernie Griffen continues to write, perform and produce music seasoned and deepened by the hard-won experience of his years and his musical journeying.

Laura Benitez And The Heartache – With All Its Thorns

Laura Benitez and the Heartache use the three chord tools of country music to tell the simple, unvarnished truth about lovetoo much whiskey, and the call of the road. Their twangy honesty shines through in straightforward arrangements, crystalline harmonies, and spare instrumentation. Beware their catchy hooks and sweet melodies – these stray puppy tunes will follow you home.

Laura Benitez’s new album, “With All Its Thorns,” is an autobiographical collection of loving, open, vulnerable and ultimately heartbreaking songs. With her delicately distinctive voice, Benitez pulls from traditional country music and brings the sound to the present-day.

Jaye Jayle – No Trail and Other Unholy Paths

Beginning as a flurry of 7” singles housed in bare-bones dust jackets, Jaye Jayle has evolved into a captivating persona alterna for the Louisville-based singer-guitarist Evan Patterson. Imbuing negative space with hallucinatory mantras, Patterson has embraced his strengths as a storyteller while trekking into thickets of unmarked sonic terrain. With his cohorts Todd Cook on bass, Neal Argabright on drums, and Corey Smith on auxiliary instrumentation, Jaye Jayle unfurls a tapestry of neo-folk economy, krautrock-esque repetition, skid row’s darkest blues, Midwestern indie rock’s nihilism, and Tangerine Dream’s analog oscillations.

Produced by Dean Hurley, David Lynch’s music supervisor of the last twelve years, No Trail And Other Unholy Paths has transcended the album format, elevating itself to a choose-your-own-adventure experience. Patterson notes that the album bears no specific beginning or ending—Side A and Side B are meant to be interchangeable. The album could open with the fluttering instrumental “No Trail,” or the slow burning synths of “As Soon As The Night,” even the spectral push-pull of “Marry Us,” featuring Emma Ruth Rundle’s spellbinding vocals. Regardless of track sequencing, No Trail And Other Unholy Paths is an album that drives its aural dimensions to the absolute threshold—and then some.

Mike McCarroll – Mysterious

Mike McCarroll music runs the gamut from outlaw country to southern rock to bluegrass and features world-class guest musicians with Mike’s signature vocals as the glue that pulls it all together.


Album Notes
Mike McCarroll is back with his fourth studio album and the best one yet. True to his focus on providing a little something for everyone, this ten-track album titled “Mysterious” runs the gamut from outlaw country, to southern rock to bluegrass. It features many great performances from world-class guest musicians. Mike’s signature vocals are the glue that pulls it all together.
Mysterious was produced and engineered by J. David Leonard, who also produced two previous MM albums “Honky Tonk Dreams” and “Twanglish”. The album was recorded mostly in Atlanta with some tracks recorded in Nashville and Murfreesboro, TN. This time around Mike combines some classic covers along with his original tunes.
The opener “Sweet Kentucky Girl” is an original, upbeat, and amusing pure bluegrass tune written by MM. Recorded mostly on Music Row in Nashville, it features Rhonda Vincent’s lead guitarist Josh Williams on some incredibly fast flat-picking guitar, banjo and mandolin. Todd Parks, bassist for Sam Bush provides excellent upright bass on this fun tune.
The second track, is a cover of an early Travis Tritt song titled “Restless Kind”. This one has a little different take on Travis’ arrangement, moving it more into the southern rock arena and framing it more as a biker tune. This was done deliberately so as not to try and simply copy his version. The song features Tritt’s lead guitarist Wendell Cox who played on the original song, Sara Evans’ fiddle player Bethany Olds Dick and Boz Scaggs drummer David Northrup. The arrangement was changed slightly adding somewhat of a Bo Diddly drum beat in portions of the song along with an organ track reminiscent of Steppenwolf’s “Born To Be Wild” The song begins and ends with roaring motorcycle sounds giving it a real outlaw feel.
The third tune is a cover of Bob Dylan’s “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere”. This is a fun, upbeat country/bluegrass version featuring Wendell Cox on lead guitar, Josh Williams on mandolin. MM has been performing this song at live shows as a crowd sing-a-long for awhile and wanted to include a studio version of it on this record.
Track four is a cover of Candi Staton’s “I Ain’t Easy To Love” and was featured in the movie Muscle Shoals. This song is performed as a duet featuring blues artist Vallery Barbin who provides exceptional and very soulful vocals reminiscent of a combination of Stevie Nicks and Janice Joplin. While the original was very much R&B, this song was moved slightly towards a bluesy southern rock arrangement with fabulous guitar work by Jody Worrell.
The fifth song is a new MM original titled “In The Middle” with a distinct Waylon Jennings kind-of-feel to it. It features Wendell Cox using a B-Bender on his Fender Telecaster, Bethany Olds Dick on fiddle and David Northrup on drums.
Song number six is an upbeat, original rocking country tune titled “Good Thing Goin’ On”. The feel of this tune slightly reminds you of Wild Angels by Martina McBride with blazing pedal steel by the incredible Tommy Dodd, killer rock guitar by producer David Leonard, kicking drums by David Northrup. A little bass synthesizer was added for some extra texture, punch and bottom end. This is a song that you will keep coming back to it over and over.
Number seven is a song of lost love called “Signed, Sealed and Delivered”. The song laments finding a break up letter and the mixed emotions of a sudden, unexpected loss of a trusted significant other. It features a super powerful lead guitar solo by the amazing Jody Worrell that is dripping with raw feeling. The harmony vocals lend an Eagles-type feel to this bluesy country tune.
“Take It On Home” is the eighth track and is a rousing, rocking outlaw country “go away, get lost” song written by MM. Wendell Cox kicks it off with some killer guitar licks and later cranks it out with a combo Sturgill Simpson/Waylon Jennings smoking-hot solo that kicks some serious butt. Tommy Dodd tears it up on pedal steel. This is pure Mike McCarroll country-with-an-attitude music and he clearly enjoys singing it.
Track nine is a slow sweet, original country love song titled “Stay Home With You Tonight” written by Mike. Listeners will enjoy Tommy Dodd’s perfect pedal steel playing and the tight harmony vocals that make this song one you will want to play again and again.
The title cut “Mysterious” is the tenth and final track. This is a special song to Mike. His former lead guitarist, the late Perry Ray Boyce asked him to co-write it shortly before he passed away from brain cancer. Mike finished and recorded the song in memory of him. Perry wanted it to be modeled after an early Atlanta Rhythm Section sound. Steve Stone, lead guitarist for Atlanta Rhythm Section and Wendell Cox put the mojo on this tune bringing it true to form with ARS-style screaming guitars. The song features a late Paul Goddard-style bass solo and a Dean Daughtry-style Wurley by David Leonard. This one is pure southern rock through and through with an outro guitar solo that ARS fans will absolutely love.
The album is in final production and should be released in about a month.
Session musicians include:
Wendell Cox – lead guitarist for Travis Tritt
Josh Williams – lead guitarist for Rhonda Vincent
Steve Stone – lead guitarist for Atlanta Rhythm Section
David Northrup – drummer for Boz Scaggs
Bethany Olds Dick – fiddle player for Sara Evans & Pam Tillis
Todd Parks – bassist for Sam Bush
Tommy Dodd – pedal steel player for numerous top artists
Jody Worrell – former lead guitarist for Atlanta
Vallery Barbin – blues artist and “Second Life” avatar Noma Falta
J. David Leonard – producer, engineer and multi-instrumentalist

Trainride – Southern Calling


‘Trainride’ is a band founded by Australian duo singer-guitarists Steve Bridger and Simon O’Neil. After 20 years of jamming and playing parties, Steve and Simo booked some studio time at The Grove Studios in Gosford, north of Sydney, where they met producer Josh Telford, who encouraged them to make an album.

Following on from a demo album, Steve and Simo were joined by legendary Brisbane guitarist Simon Gardner and the powerhouse rhythm section of David Shaw (drums) Tommy Hynes (bass) and Michael Hynes (keyboards), and ‘Trainride’ was born. A couple more songs ‘Give it Back’ and ‘Bout The Song’ were recorded in Brisbane and the debut album ‘Southern Calling’ (after the title track) was finished in 2017.

A journey through southern rock, outlaw country, and some stations which may not have a name.

Heathen Apostles – Bloodgrass Vol. I & II

If there is such a thing in the current fringe roots genre as a supergroup, it would certainly be the Los Angeles-based darkroots and gothic country band Heathen Apostles, whose participating artists include ex-members of Radio Noir (Mather Louth), The Cramps (Chopper Franklin), Kings of Nuthin’ (Thomas Lorioux), and Christian Death (Stevyn Grey) in its ranks. That is one hell of a lineup. 

Born of the voices of past lives and baptized in the dust bowl dirt, the Gothic Americana music of the HEATHEN APOSTLES harkens back to a bygone chapter of American history. Using contrasting influences such as Bauhaus, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds and The Pogues with Howlin’ Wolf, Loretta Lynn (the band covers her classic Fist City) and Memphis Minnie, the HEATHEN APOSTLES have created a style of music that at once conjurs both angels and demons, and will enlighten a darkened soul.

Charm City Junction – Duckpin

Baltimore-based acoustic roots quartet Charm City Junction weaves together a tapestry of tones spawned in the rolling hills of Ireland through the hollers of Appalachia. Their sophomore release, Duckpin, showcases the band’s growth since their acclaimed debut album in 2015. They play with an intensity and sensitivity only close friends can have. Since forming in the winter of 2014, the band has rocketed to prominence through their engaging live performances and innovative approach.

Patrick McAvinue, 2017 IBMA Fiddle Player of the Year, takes charge with his virtuosic, powerful and musical approach to the fiddle. Clawhammer banjo wizard Brad Kolodner adds his playful, driving, melodic and groovy Old-Time touch. Sean McComiskey, one of the premier Irish button accordion player in the US, soars through the tunes and fills the gaps with his soulful playing. The versatile bassist Alex Lacquement drives the train, locking everything together with his commanding and tasteful choices.

Charm City Junction embodies the essence of what acoustic roots music is all about, a shared and burning passion for blazing new trails while respecting the tradition. They are torchbearers with a clear message that the future of acoustic music is in good hands.

“Carrying on the torch of interesting, rootsy music.” – SiriusXM

“Baltimore-based roots group Charm City Junction puts a new spin on old-timey music, carrying the torch of fast-picking bluegrass and toe-tapping Celtic music. Featuring fiddle, clawhammer banjo, the button accordion and upright bass, this quartet isn’t afraid to take roots music to new places — but always with an eye on tradition.” – The Washington Post 

Garrick Rawlings – Garrick Rawlings

Americana artist born in Wichita KS, raised in Sturgis, MI, left for Kalamazoo, on to Chicago, SoCal, and now Prescott, AZ. A GR show is best described as Neil Young & Johnny Cash meet the MC5 riding horseback through the desert chasing Woody, Ramblin’ Jack, Townes Van Zandt, Led Zeppelin, Tom Russell, John Prine, Guy Clark and a mariachi band at some obscure and magnificent raging campfire.