Keep scrolling down the page for our blog/program guide.
Pics, bios, reviews, album art and more! Learn lots about all the folks on the show!
Dangerous Man- Omar and the Howlers- “Muddy Springs Road”
Diesel Smoke, Dangerous Curves- Little Willies- “For The Good Times”
She’s Dangerous- Wayne Baker Brooks- “Mystery”
Dangerous- Eleni Mandell- “Afternoon”
Dangerous Blues- Miraculous Mule- “Deep Fried”
Dangerous Dan- Flatt Lonesome- “Too”
Hot New Music:
Stockyard Moan- The Mighty Neptunes- “American Blue”
Better Than- Lake Street Dive- “Bad Self Portaits”
Bryson Station- Cody Shuler- “Cody Shuler”
Building A Fire- Shelley King- “Building A Fire”
Can’t Afford Me- Kaz Hawkins- “Get Ready”
Single- Digit Highway- The CharFlies- “Linoleum Angel”
Night Trains, Distant Whistles- Scrapomatic- “I’m A Stranger (And I Love The Night)”
Trucks In The Distance- Jeff and Vida- “Simplest Plans”
Long Distance Love Affair- Rebecca Hosking- “My Mother’s Child”
Distance Is Distance- Pretty Taken- “There’s An Echo Now”
Into The Distance- Drew Emmitt- “Long Road”
Long Distance Blues- Joe Bonamassa- “Blues Deluxe”
Long Distance Operator- Little Milton- “Anthology 1953-1961″
** Keep scrolling down the page for our informative blog/program guide. Follow along as you listen! **
Dangerous Man- Omar and the Howlers
Muddy Springs Road, originally released in 1995 on Watermelon Records, was the album in which Omar Kent Dykes finally started putting everything together, opening up his sound with additional players, including harmonica ace Gary Primich and session drummer George Rains, while at the same time reining in his vocal excesses and writing solid, autobiographical songs like the two that lead off this album, “Muddy Springs Road” and “Black Bottom.” Both songs draw on Dykes’ childhood impressions growing up in McComb, MS, and both give off an ominous, swampy glow that gains emotional nuance from Dykes’ gruff, raspy vocals, which sound at times like Wolfman Jack fronting a blues band — which isn’t a bad thing at all. Unfortunately, the rest of the album, with the exception of the Bo Diddley pastiche “Hoo Doo Ball,” doesn’t carry the same kind of emotional wallop, and while everything is solid and professional sounding, it is the first two tracks that cast their tones over this album.
- Steve Leggett, AllMusic.com
Diesel Smoke, Dangerous Curves- Little Willies
Five friends — all involved in separate, outside projects — wanted to play music together. Quite simply, this desire is what led to the formation of the Little Willies in 2003. Comprised of Lee Alexander (bass), Norah Jones (piano/vocals), Richard Julian (guitar/vocals), Dan Rieser (drums), and Jim Campilongo (guitar), the group started with an evening gig booked at the Living Room on New York’s Lower East Side. The quintet found they shared a common fondness for classic American music like Hank Williams, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson, and they began playing covers of some of their favorites. This one-off performance ultimately turned into sporadic shows at the venue whenever their individual schedules would allow, slowly incorporating original songs into their set along the way.
-Corey Apar, AllMusic.com
The Little Willies took six years to deliver a second album, but For the Good Times sounds like it could have been cut the same afternoon as their 2006 debut. This is by no means a bad thing. The primary pleasure of The Little Willies, the uptown country cabaret covers band fronted by Norah Jones, is their ease, how they can take tunes everybody knows by heart and not so much reinterpret them as freshen them, pulling them ever so slightly toward the jazzier side. Apart from a couple of song selections — and ones that come close to the beginning of the album, too, as it opens with Ralph Stanley’s “I Worship You” and Scotty Wiseman’s “Remember Me” — there’s nothing unexpected here, but For the Good Times doesn’t feel lazy; it’s cozy and comfortable, a warm bath of an album. Generally, For the Good Times rambles along at a relaxed pace, which makes the quickening pulse of “Diesel Smoke, Dangerous Curves” all the more prominent, but for as easy-rolling as this is, there is variety here — “Fist City” is spirited, “Wide Open Road” provides some barreling good humor, “Jolene” is spare and affecting — which is just enough to keep For the Good Times colorful and quietly engaging.
-Stephen Thomas Erlewine, AllMusic.com
Photo by: Christian Lantry
She’s Dangerous- Wayne Baker Brooks
Wayne Baker Brooks serves notice of a new powerful force at play in the music world. Combining outstanding song craft, passionate vocals, and a liquid fire guitar style, this talented artist manages to honor his rich blues heritage while effortlessly expanding the boundaries of the genre.
Born and raised in Chicago, IL amongst the most prolific blues legends and blues masters in the world, Wayne Baker Brooks blues roots may run deeper and wider than the Great Lake Michigan itself, but this truly innovating artist knows no creative boundaries.
Chicago Blues laid the foundation to Wayne’s innovative style. A regular visitor (as a child) at places such as Chess Studios, Checkerboard Lounge, Wisefools, and many other blues landmarks as well as witnessing many live performances by blues masters like Buddy Guy, Jr. Wells, Luther Allison, KoKo Taylor, the great Muddy Waters, & his father. The youngest son of blues master Lonnie Brooks was born with the blues, for real! There was or still is no way of getting around the fate that is appointed to him.
Failed attempts at being a sports star resulted in a broken foot, twice broken right ankle, broken finger. “Its was God telling me this is not what you’re suppose to be doing, I had to figure out the hard way that I’m on this earth to make people smile, laugh, dance, and hopefully feel good through music. So never block your blessing or God will let you know how he feels about it”, says Wayne.
With the release of his debut CD “Mystery” in 2004 an album of contemporary blues at it’s best draws on blues, blues rock, soul, funk, & even a bit of hip hop. “Mystery” received multiple awards and accolades including a 4 star review in the All Music Guide.
By the time Wayne Baker Brooks released his debut album, he had played the blues in Lonnie Brooks’ band for almost 15 years, served as a roadie for two years before that, and led his own band for seven years (in addition to still playing with his dad). Clearly, he did not rush into a recording career. Instead, he paid his dues and took the time to find his own voice: a course a less savvy bluesman might not have made, especially considering Brooks’ family legacy. It was a wise decision, because Mystery is not just a strong debut, it’s a fully formed new vision that updates the sound of the blues without falling into the same tired blues-rock clichés. Instead, Brooks adds some soul, funk, and even a little hip-hop to his solid blues foundation and comes up with a great set of all-original tunes.
Right from the opening title cut, you know this isn’t your standard blues album.
-Sean Westergaard, AllMusic.com
Photo by: Alain Boucly
Dangerous- Eleni Mandell
Drawing a heavy influence from Tom Waits, Los Angeles hipster Eleni Mandell initiated a recording career with art-cool albums packed with her gritty, noir-ish sketches. Mandell, who was a huge fan of L.A. punkers X growing up, was raised in the Sherman Oaks region of the San Fernando Valley, and began performing out during her years as a student at Berkeley. Soon after, she fell under the mentorship of Chuck E. Weiss, the Tom Waits hobnobber (and subject of Rickie Lee Jones’ “Chuck E’s in Love”). In 1998, she self-financed her first release, Wishbone. The album spurred the Waits comparisons, as well as comparisons to PJ Harvey.
-Erik Hage, AllMusic.com
With Afternoon, L.A.-based jazz-pop chanteuse Eleni Mandell builds a soulful, seductive album around sparse accompaniment and straightforward song compositions. Her smoky voice attests to her spirit on “Can’t You See I’m Soulful,” in which she confronts a lover who treats her badly, as if she’s “easy.” “Treat me like I’m heavy,” she insists, and Mandell does get heavy lyrically, like when she falls for the character in “American Boy.” As she intones “Hands will come together, gloveless,” it’s equal parts sensuality and subtle sexuality. Ditto for the upbeat title cut, which finds her eager to assume the role of mistress, and although the retro-feeling tune is remarkably delivered, it gets bested by “Easy On Your Way Out.” Here, the singer/songwriter gives her strongest vocal performance, as she passionately croons of a fair-weather boyfriend. Assisted by producer/multi-instrumentalist Joshua Grange, bassist Ryan Fees, and drummer Kevin Fitzgerald, Eleni Mandell goes deep into her heart on Afternoon, and it’s a warm and elegant experience.
-John D. Luerssen, AllMusic.com
Dangerous Blues- Miraculous Mule
Nothing comes from nowhere. The mule, the miracle plough-puller, the humble and mighty tiller of the earth, is blessed and cursed with a dubious origin. Likewise, though their nativity was in London in the latter half of the last century, these Anglo-Irish honkeys know that their souls were forged further back and farther west. Fallen into hell’s ditch, baptised in brimstone, reborn in the devotion of African-American Gospel, the pain of penitentiary work songs, the jittery stomp of hillbilly rock. Creeping with shovels to the lonesome resting places of traditional folk, delving deep into the treasures of song that lie beneath broken soil, loading a wagon under cover of night, they have electrified and reanimated those borrowed remains with a newfound urgency, melancholy, rage and beauty.
-Michael Brett, miraculousmule.com
With the present blues revival gaining more and more steam as it thunders down the tracks, there are new bands hopping aboard all the time. Some of them are quite good, while others leave something to be desired. Even as a blues enthusiast and music journalist, it is not at all surprising when I come across a blues project that I haven’t heard of before. Until a few days ago one of those bands was Miraculous Mule, a blues rock trio out of London, whose debut album “Deep Fried” has only recently reached the public’s collective ear.
“Deep Fried” is comprised of ten songs of gritty white-boy blues and raw roots rock. While tipping their hats to traditional blues, Miraculous Mule kick up their own latter-day blues and roots rock sound for the masses. All things considered, “Deep Fried” is a very solid album, and actually quite remarkable for a debut. It covers all the bases and then some, with blues-stomp rockers, rootsy pickers, gospel preacher rants, hill country grooves, and Delta-infused shufflers. From what I have heard on their album, Miraculous Mule is undoubtedly the sort of blues band that can shake a juke joint from foundation to roof with their rousing repertoire.
-Oct. 8, 2013, examiner.com
Dangerous Dan- Flatt Lonesome
FLATT LONESOME is a young, new group of pickers fresh to the scene. While deeply-rooted in bluegrass music’s historic classics, they also have an energetic flair for country sounds, progressive jams, and soul-stirring gospel music while never forsaking their traditional essence. If you love high lonesome harmony, soaring sibling vocals and powerful bluegrass music, then you will love FLATT LONESOME!
FLATT LONESOME was born from the Robertson family’s bluegrass gospel band, Sandy Creek Revival. Pastor Dolton Robertson, his wife Lisa, and their three children Kelsi, Buddy, and Charli began playing as a group just a few years ago because of their love of bluegrass and the desire to play music together as a family. This quickly grew into a passion for the Robertson children with a great longing to travel, write, and record. So, in January 2011, Kelsi, Charli and Buddy teamed up with friends Dominic Illingworth, Michael Stockton, and Paul Harrigill (who is now married to Kelsi as of September 21, 2012) and became FLATT LONESOME. In February of 2011, the band entered the SPBGMA International Band Championship in Nashville, TN and placed 3rd – not bad for the band’s very first time on stage!
Photo by: Kim Brantley
Stockyard Moan- The Mighty Neptunes
The Mighty Neptunes play original songs on the blues side of the spectrum. You can call it Roots Rock, or you can call it Americana. We just call it American Blue.
Better Than- Lake Street Dive
Lake Street Dive have been performing since 2004 after meeting as fellow students at the New England Conservatory in Boston. The band was hand picked by Minneapolis trumpet/guitar player Mike Olson and named after an actual neighborhood of seedy bars in his hometown. Vocalist Rachael Price came from outside Nashville, Tennessee, bassist Bridget Kearney was an Iowa native, while drummer Mike Calabrese called Philadelphia home. “I wasn’t only impressed with their musicianship,” says Olson, who acquired the nickname “McDuck” while at the conservatory for his reclusive ways. “They were also a lot of fun just to hang out with. The first four years of rehearsals were more like glorified dinner parties.”
It took a casually made video featuring the band gathered around a single mic, performing a cover of Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back,” shot on a Brighton, Massachusetts, street corner to grab the public’s attention—its YouTube views now hurtling past a million views. What followed next moved very quickly—T Bone Burnett tapped them to perform on the Another Day, Another Time concert at NYC’s Town Hall, featuring music from and inspired by the Coen brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis, taped for Showtime. The New Yorker raved of their Town Hall performance: “I can’t imagine then, that Lake Street Dive—a quartet led by an amazing young singer, Rachael Price—won’t be getting some air time soon.” Rolling Stone called the band “unexpected showstoppers”.
“Lake Street Dive: This year’s best new band.”
– Rolling Stone
“Bad Self Portraits, is a fresh, knowing collection of tunes that split the difference between Motown soul, Sixties pop zip, and British Invasion swagger. With award-winning jazz vocalist Rachael Price as their secret ingredient, LSD boasts an unflagging collective charisma and sense of humor that will take them far.”
– Rolling Stone
“This Brooklyn four-piece uncorks the freshest sound of the young year, a combination of soul chord changes and torch-song vocals that’s as deceptively simple and it is expertly executed… each element demands and then rewards attention.”
“Lake Street Dive powers past nicety to connect with the passion that brings blood and sweat to the tears that heartache songs need in order to thrive.”
– NPR Fresh Air
“[Lake Street Dive] marry Motown and ’60s soul with folk and rock…[they] will have no trouble fitting in with rock and pop’s major acts.”
– Wall Street Journal
“A sparkling collection of jazz/Motown/girl group/British Invasion-inspired original tunes… The group is built around the powerhouse alto voice of Rachael Price, which sports traces of Amy Winehouse and Bonnie Raitt. That instrument is supported by the strong, smart songwriting and gorgeous harmony singing of band mates Bridget Kearney, Mike Olson and Mike Calabrese.”
– USA TODAY (* * * 1/2 out of four)
“It’s only February, but Bad Self Portraits might already be the album of the year.”
“It was easy to see what all the fuss is about. This is a band that runs extremely hot, from Price’s sultry but muscular vocals that suggest she’s Scarlett Johansson by way of Etta James to the intuitive contributions of Bridget Kearney on upright bass, Mike Calabrese on drums, and Mike Olson on guitar and trumpet.”
– The Boston Globe
Bryson Station- Cody Shuler
Album to be released on February 3, 2015.
Cody Shuler & Pine Mountain Railroad is a National touring bluegrass band who has over the years racked up Grammy, Dove, and IBMA nominations. They’ve had Six #1 songs on the Bluegrass Charts and also won Bluegrass Gospel Song of the Year by Singing News Magazine. Having performed on some of the biggest stages in Bluegrass and Gospel music, thousands of fans have enjoyed the sounds of Cody Shuler and Pine Mountain Railroad.
From Bryson City, NC, Cody began his career in music at the age of 15 playing mandolin for legendary banjo player Raymond Fairchild. There he got to meet and play music with of some of bluegrass’ biggest stars like Jimmy Martin, Del McCoury, Ralph Stanley, The Crowe Brothers and many more. In 2004 he joined the band Pine Mountain Railroad. In 2006 he took over ownership of the band and since then, he has released four albums: “Alone with Forever”, “Pickin’, Praisin’, & Singin’, “Cody Shuler & Pine Mountain Railroad” and his newest the self titled album “Cody Shuler” will release in early 2015.
Building A Fire- Shelley King
Some people enter a room and blend right in. Not Shelley King. She sweeps in, carrying herself with the strength and assurance of a woman who knows how to step up and get it done, whether “it” is leading her band, running her own record label or co-producing her new album, Building A Fire.
If there’s a little swagger to her strut, she’s earned it. Since quitting a sales job to pursue music full time in 1998, the singer-songwriter has served as the first female Texas state musician, performed with Levon Helm, toured the United States, Europe and Japan and cut two albums with members of the Subdudes — including this one, her seventh.
She’s also the author of a song recorded by Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra; they duetted on “Texas Blue Moon” after Hazlewood heard King’s version on the radio while driving through the state. That might chalk up as a lucky break, but it’s King’s talent and tenacity that make such breaks happen.
We’re talking, after all, about a woman who loves the Subdudes’ music so much, she started pursuing opening slots on their tours so she could catch their shows. It makes perfect sense that King would be attracted to that New Orleans-born band; her own soul-filled, earthy Americana sound is rooted in southern gospel and blues, dampened by the Gulf-borne humidity of Louisiana, nourished by the river loam of Muscle Shoals, then cleansed by the hot springs of her native Arkansas, with a little Texas country bubbling underneath.
Can’t Afford Me- Kaz Hawkins
Mostly underground for years as a secret songwriter. Kaz Hawkins from East Belfast is now established as one the biggest singers ever to come out of Northern Ireland, called “A Vocal Force” on stage, she envelops the fighting spirit of a true powerhouse singer. With comparisons to her idol Etta James, Mavis Staples, Janis Joplin, Kaz is loved for her down to earth attitude; she brings fun to every performance & is loved not only by her fans but anyone who meets her. She has lived and sang “The Blues” but has much more to offer across different genres in her song writing so is now embarking on an exciting mix of genres she has written for her debut album.
With her Band O ‘Men in tow and the release of her debut album ‘Get Ready‘ the bands UK Tour in September 2014 was an accomplished success, with her 2015 spring tour already being worked on and a special invite by BOSTON UNIVERSITY for Kaz to perform & lecture at a special Global Music Seminar in December representing Eastside Arts this formidable lady is rising and rising fast. Kaz Hawkins is a singer songwriter with a difference, she captivates an audition with her vocal range & emotional portrayal of her life. She is one of Belfast’s true characters.
Single- Digit Highway- The CharFlies
(Editor’s note: Album to be released on February 10, 2015.)
It took a bonfire, booze, a second divorce, and the perfect harmony partner to pull Richard Newman from his long hiatus, a fifteen-year musical funk. The poet, playwright, and editor of River Styx magazine had barely picked up his guitar in the years since his bands Junkbox and The Neverminds were staples of the St. Louis music scene. But one night while drinking by a firepit, he and his pal Shanie Latham started singing George Jones, Beatles, and Jimmy Dale Gilmore songs. Their sound triggered an avalanche of dormant songwriting.
A few months later, multi-instrumentalist and visual artist Nick Nihira joined them on bass, banjo, and vocals, creating a harmony-based Appalachian bluegrass folk-pop. Initially the trio christened themselves The Jarflies, but the night before their first show, Nick’s house burned to the ground, all his instruments, artwork, and worldly possessions gone to ash and smoke. Thereafter they became The CharFlies. Richard phoned his former Junkbox bandmate Dave Melson, of Melody Den and numerous other bands throughout the years, and Dave joined them on upright bass. The foursome released an EP, Blowfish Rodeo, in July 2013. Percussionist Steve Meyers, formerly of Psychedelic Barnyard with Nick, joined the band in 2014 during production of their first full-length CD and newest release, Linoleum Angel.
Divorces, fires, breakups, surgeries, and highway accidents haven’t deterred this unlikely band of musicians. They use their humor and misfortunes to cobble together what they call junk-folk—their own brand of Americana that draws on bluegrass, gospel, psychedelic pop, avant garde, country, and blues and keeps evolving.
Night Trains, Distant Whistles- Scrapomatic
Scrapomatic have been at it for thirteen years. Four albums in, the duo are still flooring audiences with their uncompromising sound. “It’s like songcraft and the blues had unprotected sex,” says vocalist and co-songwriter Mike Mattison. “We’re not sure what it is, but it’s spreading.”
“Blues, roots, Americana, country, yeah, that’s us,” adds Mattison.
>> Read more…
Considering that Scrapomatic had been in existence for 14 years as of 2012, the fact that I’m a Stranger is only the collective’s fourth album is surprising. However, it says less about founding members Mike Mattison and guitarist Paul Olsen not taking the group seriously, than how busy they’ve been on other projects. Mattison in particular had a pretty grueling schedule as singer for Derek Trucks’ various bands. Regardless, their previous albums have been rootsy, diverse explorations of gospel, rock, punk, funk, and country stitched together with a strong blues thread. This one is no different except that the duo adds a third official member, guitarist Dave Yoke, who helps them run through a dozen eclectic originals that traverse territory from the swampy, straight blues shuffle of the opening “Alligator Love Cry” to the twisted music hall Tom Waits-styled waltz (with horns) of “How Unfortunate for Me.”
- Hal Horowitz, AllMusic.com
Trucks In The Distance- Jeff and Vida
Jeff and Vida met in New York City in 1997 but soon left for New Orleans where they began writing and performing on a regular basis. They quickly became a force on the New Orleans music scene, winning multiple awards and building a solid following among fans and critics alike. They began touring full time in 2001 and have since played more than 200 dates a year across the United States and Europe. They released four studio recordings, along with a live disc, to wide critical acclaim.
Following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Jeff and Vida relocated to Nashville where they became part of the burgeoning alternative music scene. A performance at the Ryman Auditorium and a New York Times article which featured them alongside Nashville neighbors Old Crow Medicine Show, Gillian Welch and Todd Snider, is a sure sign their music is welcome wherever they choose to hang their hats.
Long Distance Love Affair- Rebecca Hosking
Rebecca Hosking is a singer/songwriter that has been pounding the pavement in Nashville, TN on Music Row making her presence known. Over the years she has collected numerous TV and movie cuts, recently having a song in the hit show, The Lost Girl, The Poker World Series on ESPN, Bizarre Foods of America and many more. She can be heard on the Radio both online and terrestrial stations world wide and has charted in the top 10 for most requested Independent Artist on Fame Music Radio out of Johannesburg, SA. and has 5 songs in the top 10 most requested song on Sound Machine Country Radio. She has garnered countless Independent artist cuts, With Sister Soul, Anne E. DeChant and Rachel Farley. Now is currently promoting her CD, My Soul is Already Sold and her latest release, A Few Broken Pieces will be on sale soon on her own label LoveLloyd Music. Rebecca is a hard working Indie Artist and her music is pure country roots that comes from the heart and has reached fans from across the globe which have formed a fan club they proudly have named The Hoskettes.
Distance Is Distance- Pretty Taken
“Only if I can wear a one-piece”.
Nic’s text to Jodi, in August of 2012, a yes to playing a last minute show with her, after recently meeting her, having a jam and a cup of coffee.
Each show since, which has been over 10 in and around Edmonton in 2013, Jodi has been disappointed not to see the one-piece which she imagines could only be a perfect replica of something Elvis wore in the 70’s. One can only hope to see it along with Pretty Taken in 2014, while they tour western Canada to support their upcoming album release.
Jodi Tychkowsky and Nicholas Popowich are Pretty Taken, a Canadian indie-folk duo. Their debut album, There’s an Echo Now contains Jodi’s songs, supported by Nic’s guitar and vocals and is scheduled to be released in early May 2014.
Nic and Jodi are each-others biggest fans, this allows them to adopt each others songs like they are their own. Pretty Taken is lead by Jodi, imperfect and earnest behind her guitar, with her happily sad songs about frozen pipes and Billy the Kid. With a fragile voice, she quietly breaks off lyrics, one by one, for you to hold in your hands. Nic supports her with songwriting, harmonizing vocals, and a low ambient guitar. He’s the guardian to their uniquely peripheral sound. Their songs triumphantly surge out of their own restraint, while their voices blend with the warmth of whisky and honey or some other soothing old-time remedy, perfect for the dark and cold winter nights of the prairies.
Into The Distance- Drew Emmitt
“Lord you know I’ve been so many places/At least I know I have a longer view”, sings Leftover Salmon lead singer and mandolin player Drew Emmitt over a rollicking mandolin lick on the title track of his third solo effort, Long Road. “I’ve been on the road since the 80’s – can you believe that? That’s 25 years, a quarter of a century…Long Road is all about where I’ve been, what I’ve seen, where I’ve ended up and I invited all of my friends I met along the way to help me tell the story.”
Revered as one of the most energetic and innovative mandolin players on the jamband/newgrass scene today, Emmitt’s “inestimable talents” (An Honest Tune) don’t end with just the instruments that can be picked. Holding the wheel steady on acoustic and electric slide mandolin, acoustic and electric guitar and mandola, Long Road also showcases Emmitt’s superlative storytelling and versatile vocal abilities.
When attempting to pay homage to a 20-year span of time on the road, it’s best to bring all your friends along. Drew Emmitt, the lead singer and mandolin player from the great ‘90s (and ‘00s) jam band Leftover Salmon, has assembled an all-star bluegrass guest list for his album of road tales and triumphs. Long Road, his third solo release, features musicians from the Infamous String Dusters, the String Cheese Incident, Alison Brown (Allison Krauss), John Cowan (Sam Bush, New Grass Revival), Stuart Duncan (Dolly Partin, George Strait), Ronnie McCoury (Del’s son), Reese Wynans (Stevie Ray Vaughan) and the former drummer for Leftover Salmon, Jeff Sipe (Aquarium Rescue Unit). Recruiting some of the greats in today’s bluegrass scene reiterates the notion of collaboration that usually accompanies the road.
Long Road pays respect to Emmitt’s 25 years on the road with allegorical tunes made for endless summer days and warm summer nights. Fluid bluegrass banjo picking by Chris Pandolfini and the seamless mandolin background instrumentation and solos by Emmitt give the compositions layer after layer of thick, priceless twang.
-Sarah Moore, August 29, 2008, popmatters.com
Long Distance Blues- Joe Bonamassa
As Joe Bonamassa approaches his 26th year as a professional musician, he continues to blaze a remarkably versatile artistic trail, and amass an authentic, innovative and soulful body of work. Bonamassa’s career began onstage opening for B.B. King in 1989, when he was only 12 years old. Today, he is hailed worldwide as one of the greatest guitar players of his generation, and is an ever-evolving singer-songwriter who has released 15 solo albums in the last 13 years, all on his own label, J&R Adventures. Bonamassa’s tour schedule consistently hovers at around 200 shows worldwide each year, and a heaping handful of markedly diverse side projects keep him thinking outside the box and flexing every musical muscle he’s got. He founded and oversees the non-profit Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation to promote the heritage of the blues to the next generation, fund music scholarships, and supplement the loss of music education in public schools. There’s a case to be made that Joe Bonamassa, like another star who shared the same initials, is the hardest working man in show business.
Long Distance Operator- Little Milton
He may not be a household name, but die-hard blues fans know Little Milton as a superb all-around electric bluesman — a soulful singer, an evocative guitarist, an accomplished songwriter, and a skillful bandleader. He’s often compared to the legendary B.B. King — as well as Bobby “Blue” Bland — for the way his signature style combines soul, blues, and R&B, a mixture that helped make him one of the biggest-selling bluesmen of the ’60s (even if he’s not as well-remembered as King). As time progressed, his music grew more and more orchestrated, with strings and horns galore. He maintained a steadily active recording career all the way from his 1953 debut on Sam Phillips’ legendary Sun label, with his stunning longevity including notable stints at Chess (where he found his greatest commercial success), Stax, and Malaco.
James Milton Campbell was born September 7, 1934, in the small Delta town of Inverness, MS, and grew up in Greenville. (He would later legally drop the “James” after learning of a half-brother with the same name.) His father Big Milton, a farmer, was a local blues musician, and Milton also grew up listening to the Grand Ole Opry radio program. At age 12, he began playing the guitar and saved up money from odd jobs to buy his own instrument from a mail-order catalog. By 15, he was performing for pay in local clubs and bars, influenced chiefly by T-Bone Walker but also by proto-rock & roll jump blues shouters. He made a substantial impression on other area musicians, even getting a chance to back Sonny Boy Williamson II, and caught the attention of R&B great Ike Turner, who was doubling as a talent scout for Sam Phillips at Sun. Turner introduced the still-teenaged Little Milton to Phillips, who signed him to a contract in 1953.
-Steve Huey, AllMusic.com