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Author Jackson Truax

Buck Up, the new album from Carsie Blanton, serves as a Trojan horse for her endlessly fun and captivating brand of cultural subversion. Through blending her two main influences of the singer-songwriter movement and vocal jazz, Blanton created an “All Killer, No Filler” listening experience that’s as radiantly jubilant as it is deeply thought-provoking. https://twitter.com/carsieblanton/status/1108114596856946688 And while the humor, irony, satire, and sarcasm inherent in Blanton’s writing are incredible joys to experience, what makes her work culturally essential and emotionally transcendent is her willingness to provide the feminist, counter-culture, sex-positive, gender-bending, socialist manifesto that we didn’t know we needed until “That…

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On The Wood Brothers’ latest album, One Drop of Truth, the Nashville-based trio brilliantly utilizes a compelling variety of Americana influences to craft a song cycle that’s equally captivating, joyous and memorable. The band’s recent run of West Coast shows found guitarist Oliver Wood, bassist Chris Wood and drummer Jano Rix providing their audiences with musically and emotionally transcendent sets, which included a jaw-dropping blend of delicate folk harmonies, acoustic blues, heavy hitting electric jams and funky soul grooves. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYY1T7BYd9U After concluding the band’s annual late-winter West coast run, Oliver quickly rejoined his family for some well-deserved time off. He…

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With the 2018 release of their second album, Lucky 13, and an increasingly prolific 2019 touring schedule, Shannon Rae and 100 Proof are reaching an ever-growing audience with their unique brand of country rock. At the heart of the band’s music and live set are a collection of thoroughly memorable original songs written by the band’s two songwriters, lead singer Rae and keyboard player Dave Polich. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GIAvBK3CzEE Their show connects meaningfully with a range of audiences, as their original songs showcase Rae and Polich’s ability to masterfully utilize the evocative storytelling and effective song structures that have been at the…

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Fernando Perdomo photo via Cyndi Trissel Less than a year ago, Fernando Perdomo released Out to Sea, a sonically dynamic and thoroughly memorable instrumental prog rock album on which he plays every instrument on almost every song, along with being the sole songwriter, producer and engineer. Perdomo quickly followed with Zebra Crossing, a blending of his prog sensibilities with his equally accomplished identity as a prolific singer-songwriter, largely recorded in one ten-hour session at Abbey Road Studios. He also completed Out to Sea 2, another vivid, compelling and immersive song cycle being released in February, now available for pre-order on…

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Guitarist Neal Casal and keyboardist Adam MacDougall are best known as indispensable members of the Chris Robinson Brotherhood, an outstanding live band due largely to their ability to seamlessly blend jam-band, blues, country, soul, southern rock and psychedelic influences in their endlessly energetic, melodic and captivating shows. The Chris Robinson Brotherhood, often referred to as CRB, was formed by Robinson in 2011 as a side project to the now defunct Black Crowes. As is known to happen in the prolific and amorphous culture of jam bands, what started as side project/offshoot now spends almost the entire year on the road,…

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Calling Rob Bonfiglio either a “singer-songwriter” or a “multi-instrumentalist” would feel almost tragically inadequate. His fifth solo album, Trouble Again, is an immaculate, euphoria-inducing song cycle that seamlessly weaves together Bonfiglio’s classic rock, Philly soul and power pop influences, presented through a musical lens that weaves in the groovy ambiance of Southern California, all of which Bonfiglio brilliantly captures and lovingly celebrates. What makes Trouble Again an infinitely more impressive achievement is that Bonfiglio wrote all ten songs before producing them in his home studio, where he played all the instruments and sang all the vocals heard on this thoroughly…

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Since leaving Dwight Yoakam’s band in 2015, Americana singer/songwriter Brian Whelan and former member of indie rock band The Broken West has continued to tour as a sideman and solo artist in support of his second solo album, Sugarland. Although thirty-six-year-old Whelan is a staple of the Cinema Bar in Culver City and the Grand Ole Echo in Echo Park, his various touring commitments have kept him on the road for much of the past two years. Luckily for Los Angelenos, Whelan is in town through the year playing local venues and working on his third solo album. After some gigs…

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Judith Owen is equally influenced by the great American songbook, the Laurel Canyon singer-songwriter movement, and a cornucopia of diverse jazz ideas that the Welsh pianist encounters while living in New Orleans. Owen has released eleven albums of original material, with her songwriting often exploring intimate moments of interpersonal connection or how people navigate their most deeply hidden vulnerabilities. Owen’s latest album, redisCOVERed, (available at this link) offers her ever-growing audience her first collection of covers, showcasing a surprisingly diverse selection of songs that Owen has reinvented in her signature style. Those familiar with Owen’s music will hardly be surprised…

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