Ruen Brothers “Finer Things” – Listen

Ruen Brothers have announced their new single ‘Finer Things’, written in Nashville with Brendan Benson of The Raconteurs. It’s the second single from their recently released, debut album ‘All My Shades Of Blue’.   The album was produced by Rick Rubin who brought in Chad Smith to add the high energy beat and a soaring brass section made up of Dana Nielsen, Mitch Manker and Gabrial McNair.  Rick Rubin explained his thoughts on making the album “I liked that their songwriting seemed like it was from another era… The idea was, what would a modern album with Roy Orbison and The Everly Brothers produced by Phil Spector sound like?”

Jason McNiff + Toni Montserrat, The Harrison, London, 27th July 2018

To the very compact basement bar of The Harrison in Kings Cross for the official launch gig of Jason McNiff’s latest album ‘Joy and Independence’. He’s now on the splendidly-rostered At The Helm records and so we have a Bradford man living in London with his label management in Brighton so who needs Nashville? Hailed as “a superior singer/songwriter” by  the erudite and well-respected USA magazine No Depression and 4-starred by the UK’s Mojo, McNiff states with some pride that this, his sixth album, is the first time he’s had the confidence to work with just an acoustic guitar and his voice. He says he framed the songs as “a homage to a golden era of the coffee house Troubadour”,  albeit on this sultry Friday night we had replaced coffee with craft ale.  Continue reading “Jason McNiff + Toni Montserrat, The Harrison, London, 27th July 2018”

Video Premiere: The Hungry Mothers “Easy”

A new band from Brighton, The Hungry Mothers describe their music as a feelgood, soulful take on folk and Americana.  And do you know what, they’re right.  Modestly, they don’t describe it as excellent, so we will, because it is, and was recorded at Ford Lane studios by producer, and friend of the band, Joe Dennis. Recording just south of the Sussex idyll, Arundel, in the late spring, the rural surroundings had an appurtenant impact on the feel-good summer tune. The heat wave is back, just in time. Catch them live at the Komedia on Thursday 9th.

David Ramirez announces UK dates – September

David Ramirez has announced details of August and September 2018 EU dates, including four UK headline shows with a stop at London’s Borderline on September 7, 2018, which come in support of David’s latest album ‘We’re Not Going Anywhere’  which is out now via Thirty Tigers. Produced by Sam Kassirer, the album finds Ramirez painting an imagined picture of contemporary America through the songwriter’s own perspective of having dual American and Mexican heritage. Continue reading “David Ramirez announces UK dates – September”

Hawks and Doves “From A White Hotel”(Jullian Records, 2018)

The story behind Portland’s Hawks and Doves’ debut album ‘From A White Hotel’ and how it came to fruition is a curious one. Five years ago, after a prison sentence and free from a number of personal struggles, front-man and lead songwriter Kasey Anderson had decided he was finished with playing music until a friend asked him to contribute a song for a benefit compilation to help pay for a friend’s cancer treatment – at which point, Anderson, now five years sober, went about putting together a group of four to record a cover song. The group consisting of producer/engineer Jordan Richter, Ben Landsverk and Jesse Moffat adopted the moniker Hawks & Doves and recorded a cover of Tender Mercies ‘Wiseblood’ (which is included as a bonus track on the record) and that studio session led to the birth of the band and the album ‘From A White Hotel’. Continue reading “Hawks and Doves “From A White Hotel”(Jullian Records, 2018)”

Charley Crockett, The Borderline, London, 24th July 2018

“What’s going on London? It’s time to boogie woogie.” And we’re off and running. Charley Crockett and his band The Blue Drifters are currently undertaking their first headline tour of the UK, and very much surfing on the wave of a live TV performance on the Andrew Marr show the previous Sunday. A  native of South Texas, Charley Crockett performs music which has its roots in the lone star state and Louisiana – what he describes as “Gulf Coast Boogie Woogie.” Without wanting to further confuse the issue, he promises us, tongue in cheek, to deliver two other kinds of music tonight: “the honk and the tonk.” Continue reading “Charley Crockett, The Borderline, London, 24th July 2018”

Starry Skies “Starry Skies” – Listen

Who could argue with such a sentiment? Starry Skies have an album, their second, of the same name due out on the 12th of October on Fox Star Records.  The title song ‘Starry Skies‘ showcases the Glaswegian band’s power-pop credentials , but the album will also feature their eclectic mix of folk, pure Americana, and blues driven rock.  The band’s songwriter and singer Warren McIntyre explained the thoughts behind the album: “There are not enough people being kind to each other… It’s really clichéd but it’s nice to be nice. I decided I wanted to be more straightforward lyrically and send a simple message about spending the rest of my time on this planet being as kind as I can as much as I can.”  We agree – but do make an exception for wasps.


Mid-Sussex americana beer festival returns for second year

After its inaugural year in August 2017, the Mid-Sussex americana and ale festival returns next month to the Hassocks hotel. Last year the festival featured the likes of Danny and the Champs, Robert Vincent, Dean Owens and Stevie Ray Latham. This year has an equally good array of talent, including AUK favourites Bennett Wilson Poole and Ags Connolly. Appearing alongside them are Danni Nicholls, Jason McNiff, Hannah Rose Platt, Mike Ross, Trent Miller and others. Continue reading “Mid-Sussex americana beer festival returns for second year”

Gareth Dunlop makes it to Nashville

Photo: A. Scarlati

Well, slightly more accurately, Belfast born Gareth Dunlop has seen one of his songs make it into the last ever episode of the TV series (which is quite popular around parts of the Americana UK publishing conglomerate).  Quite appropriate really as he splits his time between Belfast and Nashville where he recorded his most recent EP.  The song ‘Dwell in my soul‘, which can be seen in a live video below, was selected for the show by the Executive Music Producer of Nashville Tim Lauer.  Continue reading “Gareth Dunlop makes it to Nashville”