John Calvin Abney “Safe Passage” (Black Mesa Records, 2019)

First impressions count, and the stylish but relaxed artistic photos on this album cover speak volumes before any songs are even heard. The first track ‘I Just Want to Feel Good’ does just what it says on the tin. Its bright and sparkly intro setting the scene for this ‘Maybe Happy’ album of ten original songs from Abney, which showcase his vast musical ability. Continue reading “John Calvin Abney “Safe Passage” (Black Mesa Records, 2019)”

John Moreland + John Calvin Abney, Jazz Cafe London, 31st July 2018

Weighty is a good word for John Moreland and that’s no sly childish quip on a guy carrying more than quite a few pounds. Such is his vocal delivery, gritty song writing and overall demeanour that everything on tonight’s Jazz Cafe stage came with a sorrowful and hefty gravitas. Perhaps the only piece of comedy of the night was the board outside advertising him as ‘Blues Guitarist John Moreland’. Well, he does play guitar and he certainly has the inner blues, so then again. Continue reading “John Moreland + John Calvin Abney, Jazz Cafe London, 31st July 2018”

John Calvin Abney “Coyote” (Black Mesa Records, 2018)

Girlfriend or girl-fiend? There are some excellent break-up albums around at the moment. Lilly Hiatt’s gorgeously rocking ‘Trinity Lane’ is written in blood and self-recrimination and now along comes Coyote from John Calvin Abney, who offers up the tattered remnants of his broken heart. If you’re a fan of John Moreland, you will already be aware of Abney, Moreland’s dependable and extraordinary band member who plays guitar and keyboards, not to mention a gorgeous pedal-steel. They grew up together in Tulsa, Oklahoma and have each other’s backs. Abney will be in the UK in June when he will be hitting the road with John Moreland and before performing as a duo with Moreland each night, Abney will be playing a solo set. Continue reading “John Calvin Abney “Coyote” (Black Mesa Records, 2018)”