Nicole Atkins “Goodbye Rhonda Lee” (Single Lock Records, 2017)

It’s not unreasonable to wonder who Rhonda Lee is, and why the ex-queen of Asbury Park and new resident of Nashville is bidding her farewell. Nicole Atkins provides the answer – it’s herself, or at least her worst half. Having struggled with some sobriety issues in recent years Nicole Atkins took the pledge and this album is a tangible result of her abilities returning as her non-drinking days increased in number. Continue reading “Nicole Atkins “Goodbye Rhonda Lee” (Single Lock Records, 2017)”

Moonsville Collective, At The Top, Long Beach California, Friday 15th September

The rest of the building may be still under construction to make another restaurant but right At The Top everything is fine and dandy – it’s Long Beach’s latest music venue / bar and it still has that fresh “new venue” smell.  Clean too. This gig by the seven piece Moonsville Collective acted as both a new EP launch party and also as a curtain raiser for the Long Beach Folk Revival Festival set to take place the next day in nearby Rainbow Lagoon Park. Continue reading “Moonsville Collective, At The Top, Long Beach California, Friday 15th September”

Michael Nau “Some Twist” (Full Time Hobby, 2017)

Michael Nau had already been pretty busy over the years with his bands Page France and Cotton Jones, but having released a solo debut, Mowing, last year – which had been the result of working into shape a series of demos that had been knocking around for some time – he made the decision to not hang around on producing the follow up. Some Twist doesn’t feel hurried though, more it has a classic singer-songwriter feel particularly on a couple of reverb heavy tracks which bring the much missed Harry Nilsson to mind Continue reading “Michael Nau “Some Twist” (Full Time Hobby, 2017)”

The Deportees – “A Single Truth” – Listen

The Deportees are an Aberdeen based band who look to the likes of Teenage Fanclub, The Waterboys, and Wilco as their musical inspirations.  Over three years in the making, their debut album The Birth of Industry is out on November 3rd (launch party, by the by, is at Dunbar Street Hall the next day)  and the first single is A Single Truth which displays those influences nicely.  Is there a touch of King Creosote in there as well?  Could be – take a listen.

Dori Freeman “If I Could Make You My Own” – Listen

It’s kind of a dream come true situation for Dori Freeman’s first single from her new album. When Dori was 22 she liked to kick-free from the Bluegrass music she’d grown up surrounded by and drive about singing along to her Teddy Thompson CD. Then she dropped him a line telling him how good they sounded together. Long story short, the album Letters Never Read was produced by Teddy Thompson, and yes guitar fans you do recognise the playing on If I Could Make You My Own.  Dori Freeman has kept it Thompson on the album as well, adding a cover of I Want To See The Bright Lights Tonight on a collection that she says is happier sounding than her debut “I always want to put out something that’s a genuine representation of what I was going through” noting with a laugh that getting married last year to fellow musician Nick Falk made writing love songs much easier.

Lydia Ramsey “Bandita” (Independent, 2017)

Recently seen in the UK as a solo performer touring with Joe Purdy, Lydia Ramsey’s debut album Bandita is an enticing combination of folk and country that sparkles as modern Americana. Here backed by a full band Ramsey presents a collection of songs of crystal clarity, sung with such warmth and, more often than not, a vocal that conveys a half smile and a knowing wink – as on Springtime where she makes an offer that can’t be refused Continue reading “Lydia Ramsey “Bandita” (Independent, 2017)”

Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers “The Long Awaited Album” (Rounder Records, 2017)

The Long Awaited Album is Steve Martin’s sixth and a half album of banjo music, his initial foray being the B-side of The Steve Martin Brothers way back in 1981, with the first full album being 2009’s all-star collaboration The Crow. This was followed up with
Rare Bird Alert, an album which also featured The Steep Canyon Rangers as his backing band – they’d been supporting him out on tour as well. Continue reading “Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers “The Long Awaited Album” (Rounder Records, 2017)”