Tag Archives: blues

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Jack Nolan Releases Single ‘Dollar’

When it was just you and me, broke, young, and free, that’s love. No houses, no fast cars, no responsibilities.

“And she loved me like no other / When I did not have one dollar / Not a dollar / On me”

They say when you’re on a good thing, stick to it – so why not go back to Nashville, it worked out perfectly pre-pandemic, why not post-pandemic? And what better way to add a bit of hope to 2022 than a 12 string guitar and a nod to the mighty Wilbury’s? Listen out for Justin Weaver’s jangling 12 string intro to herald the first track release from Jack’s upcoming 2023’s album Jindabyne.

Dollar is a story about hope and knowing things would work out just fine.

“See my reputation follow / When I did not have a dollar / Not a dollar / On me”

An up-tempo acoustic/band based track akin to Paul Kelly from Jack Nolan as the debut single from his forthcoming album. The tune moves along very smoothly with some sweet backing vocals, catchy guitar riffs and Jack’s story telling vocals. A hooky chorus sets the spot on vibe of this one.

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Based in Sydney, Australia, singer songwriter Jack Nolan has been performing and releasing music since the mid 1990’s. Along with a five-album solo catalogue Jack also fronted The Kelly Gang, with Rick Grossman, bassist for The Divinyls and Hoodoo Gurus along with Midnight Oil drummer Rob Hirst and guitar player Martin Rotsey. Their 2004 album Looking for the Sun was critically adored along with their energetic live shows.

Once quaintly described as ‘Darlinghurst Country’, his sound unites elements of folk, country, rock ‘n’ roll and ambient atmospheres fusing Nolan’s passion for intensely charged electric guitar and finger-picked acoustic guitar.

The critically acclaimed 2018 album ‘Our Waverley Star’ was followed up by the equally impressive ‘Gabriel’. It was these two American outings that cemented Nolan’s love of Nashville and built from a connection with guitarist/producer Justin Weaver that started with a one-off phone call and developed into an alliance that Nolan describes as ‘Team America’. What’s now become a regular jaunt is an opportunity for Nolan to get away from all the distractions of home, and “arrive in town, in the northern winter, when everyone’s off the road, with my swag of songs to greet all the boys again to collaborate”.

Jack’s new album – JINDABYNE is set for release in early 2023. This album has waited in the wings while lockdowns and rules meant the guitar took on a whole new meaning. “I arrived home from Nashville in early March 2020 with ‘Gabriel’ ready for mastering. One week later, the world turned on its axis and – lockdown. This created a sense of urgency in me, so I made a conscious decision not to waste the time and went to work writing JINDABYNE. As soon as the plane could fly I was booked and took off back to the US”. 

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Steve Williams Releases New Album ‘Deja Vu’

The new album from Steve Williams (Wa Wa Nee, Matt Finish, Choirboys) ‘Deja Vu’ has songs ranging from Glam Rock, Funk and Blues. The tunes have something for everyone including an amazing dream romance story that actually came true, different perceptions of reality, persecution, inequality and some characters who have done jail time or simply gone bad.

All songs were written by Steve except ‘Pump’ with Pat Powell and ‘Ronnie’ with John Kenny. Steve played all instruments but with the help of a few very talented guests: Gus Fenwick, Nic MC, John Kenny, Pat Powell, Glen Muirhead, Ralph Franke, Raechel Summers, and Mac Johnson.

The album was recorded entirely by Steve in his home studio which he has been refining for years.

Steve Williams came to prominence as the lead guitarist in the 80’s pop group Wa Wa Nee, who had top 5 hits and ARIA Nominations in Australia and chart action in Europe and the USA. Following Wa Wa Nee’s breakup Steve worked with prominent local artists, James Freud and Richard Clapton, beforerelocating to Europe.

In London, Steve built a successful career as a session guitarist working with Jon Lord from Deep Purple, Ray Parker Jr, Real Life and many more. He returned to Australia in 2005 and continued session and production work including musical theatre and television appearances playing with The Choir Boys, Matt Finish and others.

In 2020 Steve released the ‘Surry Road album’. All the tracks were co-written with musicians that he has worked with over his many years of touring and recording. Tracks feature guest vocals from Pat Powell (Melbourne Ska Orchestra and many more) and other well-known vocalists such as: John Kenny (Rockmelons), Tim Watson (Taxiride), Vince Contarino, Terry Slesser (UK), Louise Person as well up-coming Melbourne singer Nic MC.

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Daxton Releases New Album ‘50% Grit’

A long-time friend asked Daxton to produce a stripped back, raw but lively and psychedelic dirty blues song. ‘Just something I can really get into as I drink my bourbon to late at night please mate’.

Dax took on the job with gusto and was so engrossed that before he knew it 7 new tunes were born. The song, Rise Above, fulfilled the original request and opens the album. The rest of the tunes don’t disappoint and range from dirty, stompy, bluesy slide pieces to slightly more grungy but poppy tunes with some snare and percussion added in.

Song Descriptions
Rise Above
Dirty scratchy psychedelic harp and cigar box guitar feature in this mid-tempo track from Daxton’s new offering.  Distorted, rough and ready vocals set the tone for the next six tracks on this mini album.

Nothing to lose
A more up-tempo blues tune. Bass, slide cigar box guitar and some simple drums flesh out this one with his life-worn vocals and lyrics filling in the story.

Right On time
Guitar riffs and electric slide stabs plus some nifty catchy vocal lines abound in this mid-tempo song. There’s some stomp box keeping time and enough changes and interesting sounds to keep you rocking all the way through.

Producing and playing music since his early teens, Daxton’s passion has kept him continually creating new material both for his band and solo career. On stage, Daxton comes across like he was born to play, his unique guitar style blending perfectly with heart-warming vocals.

Daxton has appeared at major festivals including the Sydney Blues & Roots and Tamworth Country Music Festival where he supported artists such as Kasey Chambers and Beccy Cole. He also has had one of his tracks ‘Moody Liz’ featured in the popular American TV series Doll House.

Based in Sydney, Daxton is best described as a blues/rock artist with a twist of pop and rock. He plays slide guitar rock/blues songs with a fresh and innovative sound.

Daxton – 50% Grit is out NOW September 23rd
Foghorn/MGM

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Luke Escombe Releases New Album ‘Whale Beach Road’

Finally out on all digital platforms here is Luke’s latest album, an ode to brilliant songwriting and musicianship all wound up in family stories.
Luke says -

“I genuinely believe that Whale Beach Road is the best album of “adult music” I’ve made, and it’s very special to me because of all the family history written into the songs.

Whale Beach Road is the first full studio album I’ve made solely under my own name. I started writing the songs in early 2020, towards the end of the fires and before the first lockdown. Initially, I was working on a memoir but then the stories started turning into songs instead.

At first, I was hesitant to apply for Jobkeeper in 2020, as I felt like other people needed it more than me, but then I realised it would give me the funds to go and employ all of the amazing musicians on this album, like drummer Evan Mannell, bassist Zoe Hauptmann, Aaron Flower on guitar and Clayton Doley on Hammond organ. There was even enough to get string and backing vocal arrangements for most of the songs, which gives it that luxurious 70’s soul vibe I was after while still sounding modern and clean. I could have been a hermit and lived off beans and rice, but instead Jobkeeper enabled me to keep creating and collaborating with my community.

Whale Beach Road is a very personal album, but I think there’s also something very universal there in that the songs are all about searching for love and hope in an uncertain world. It was all written and tracked between the Northern Beaches of Sydney and the Central Coast, and I think those beautiful locations feed into the sound. Hopefully the album takes listeners to a good place.”

Family – On Feature Track ‘Max and Melanie’

“While I was writing Max and Melanie I had the idea that it would make a good 70th birthday present for my Mum, a way of paying tribute to her family and where she came from. I’d never actually realised it before, but she was a political refugee, an asylum seeker in her own country. I carried on her story in another song on the album – “Lady Sunlight” – and then started to think about my own story, and all the events and circumstances that had led me to the exact place I found myself at the time of writing these songs: a house on Whale Beach Road. That’s how the album found its narrative, and its title. It’s about people trying to hold on to love and hope while confronting the powerful tide of history. To paraphrase the chorus of Max and Melanie, history makes plans for us, but we can still make plans for ourselves. I find that idea very hopeful.”

“Luke Escombe is a rock-soul singer, raconteur, blistering blues guitarist, comedian and songwriter, and very good at them all” – Sydney Morning Herald

Luke Escombe is an ARIA-nominated singer-songwriter who combines his blues, rock and soul influences with subversive humour, poetic lyrics and heartfelt storytelling. He is the creator of the internationally acclaimed one-man show “Chronic” and the writer and front man of multi award-winning Aussie kids band The Vegetable Plot.

Luke has released numerous albums and EPs with his band Luke Escombe and the Corporation and one album solely under his own name, 2017’s Skeleton Blues. The album was recorded direct to tape in a three-hour session at Damien Gerard Studios, featuring his smoky-voiced cover of Bob Dylan’s “Man in the Long Black Coat” alongside distinctive originals like Punctuation Blues and The Lipsi. This new Luke Escombe studio album, Whale Beach Road, was recorded in between lockdowns with some of Sydney’s most in-demand session players.

Luke received his early musical education in London, where his father’s job in the rock and roll industry enabled him to see hundreds of legendary performances by artists like Freddie Mercury, Prince and Bruce Springsteen while he was just a boy. When he’s not channelling his childhood idols, Luke is an ambassador for a number of health charities, a member of the NSW Arts Advisory Panel, a teaching artist with the Sydney Opera House’s Creative Leadership in Learning Program. He is also a song writing mentor with the Sydney Children’s Hospital’s Chronic Illness Peer Support program [ChIPS] with whom he wrote and recorded the track “Wake up Call” in 2021. He believes strongly that music and storytelling can play a transformative role in health, education and society. Among his more obscure awards is the title of “Sydney’s Sexiest man voice”, which he won in a competition on a once-popular Sydney radio station.

Luke Escombe – Whale Beach Road (Foghorn/MGM) August 19

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Daxton Releases Music Video for Single ‘End of the Road’

Daxton’s latest music video is for his new single ‘End of the Road‘ lifted from his current ‘Electric Satellite‘ album.

With a green screen now part of his home garage studio and a tonne of spare cardboard boxes lying about it’s amazing to see what Dax has managed to create with nothing but his imagination and time on his hands.

End of the Road’ Official Music Video:

The video and song is reminiscent of Beck’s ‘Loser’ and is a bit of a nod to that era although the slide blues element (a signature of Daxton’s) gives it a timeless quality as well and could fit any era from right now to way back.

The album has also just started to garner warm reviews internationally, here are some of the most recent:

“Although it’s blues-based, Daxton plays these songs with an alternative rocker’s edge.” – Dan MacIntosh
https://www.curiousformusic.com/post/daxton-s-new-album-electric-satellite

“A wild, animalistic energy ties together “Electric Satellite” revealing Daxton’s uncanny ability to craft a truly timeless sound.”
https://beachsloth.tumblr.com/post/689331784743272448/daxton-electric-satellite

“Electric Satellite is another blast of electric and eclectic blues, taking in the grunt and groove of rock and the accessibility and melody of pop and using this to forge his own southern fried take on the genre.” – Dave Franklin
https://dancing-about-architecture.com/electric-satellite-daxton-reviewed-by-dave-franklin/

Daxton released his new album ‘Electric Satellite’ earlier this year, a twelve-track slide blues album with up-tempo spacious songs produced by Pat Dow and Marshall Cullen. Daxton has worked with Pat on many projects – someone who has a keen ear for Daxton’s rustic blues mixed with psychedelic pop/rock sounds.

The album is Daxton’s seventh following the release in 2018 of ‘In Verses’ which features songs covering his favourite themes: life and death, the yin and yang of life, love and loss, while still keeping his always positive and up-tempo vibe.

Producing and playing music since his early teens, Daxton’s passion has kept him continually creating new material both for his band and solo career. On stage, Daxton comes across like he was born to play, his unique guitar style blending perfectly with heart-warming vocals.

Daxton has appeared at major festivals including the Sydney Blues & Roots and Tamworth Country Music Festival where he supported artists such as Kasey Chambers and Beccy Cole. He also has had one of his tracks ‘Moody Liz’ featured in the popular American TV series Doll House.

Based in Sydney, Daxton is best described as a blues/rock artist with a twist of pop and rock. He plays slide guitar rock/blues songs with a fresh and innovative sound. His latest album ‘Electric Satellite is a heavy, rustic blues rock album with psychedelic pop/rock sounds.

‘End of the Road’ Official Music Video:

Listen to ‘End of the Road’ on Spotify:

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Luke Escombe Releases Single ‘Sacred River’

“Sacred River” is the pulsating second single from Luke Escombe’s forthcoming album “Whale Beach Road”. Starting with some very funky catchy bass (Tina Weymouth style), then once Luke’s vocals start this could be a Talking Heads song for sure. Up-tempo, hooky, and immediate, this one is a winner for radio. Written around the hypnotic bass and drum loop, played live on the recording by bassist Zoe Hauptmann and drummer Evan Mannell, the track builds a suspenseful narrative of a man on the edge.

Luke says: “The song was inspired by certain characters I would see on small flights up to Mackay, the FIFO workers leaving their young families for weeks on end to disappear into the company of other men, working in deserted places.”

Musically, “Sacred River” draws on one of Luke’s deepest musical influences: “One of my earliest memories is going to see Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall’ live in concert at Earl’s Court in London when I was 4 years old. My Dad was working on the tour and showed me around the stage on the day of the show. I remember being really excited but then running out in terror as soon as the lights went down.”

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Luke plays the lead guitar part on the track, recorded in one take at Damien Gerard Studios in Gosford through an old Fender Bassman amp that was, as Luke recalls, “cranked so loud I thought it was going to explode. I was sitting right next to it trying to manipulate the sound so it didn’t incinerate me with feedback.  It was totally instinctive.”

Clayton Doley adds extra layers of swirling tension on the Hammond organ, and the epic choruses feature backing vocals by Sarah Belkner, Darren Percival, Alice Terry and Daniel Mifsud. It was recorded by Andrew Beck and Richie Belkner, mixed by Richie at Free Energy Device Studios in Newtown and mastered by Grammy-winning engineer William Bowden, who declared it his favourite track on the album: “hypnotic and awesome”.

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About Luke Escombe

“Luke Escombe is a rock-soul singer, raconteur, blistering blues guitarist, comedian and songwriter, and very good at them all” – Sydney Morning Herald

Luke Escombe is an ARIA-nominated singer-songwriter who combines his blues, rock and soul influences with subversive humour, poetic lyrics and heartfelt storytelling. He is the creator of the internationally acclaimed one-man show “Chronic” and the writer and front man of multi award-winning Aussie kids band The Vegetable Plot.

Luke has released numerous albums and EPs with his band Luke Escombe and the Corporation and one album solely under his own name, 2017’s Skeleton Blues. The album was recorded direct to tape in a three-hour session at Damien Gerard Studios, featuring his smoky-voiced cover of Bob Dylan’s “Man in the Long Black Coat” alongside distinctive originals like Punctuation Blues and The Lipsi. A new Luke Escombe studio album, Whale Beach Road, recorded in between lockdowns with some of Sydney’s most in-demand session players, is set for release in 2022.

Luke received his early musical education in London, where his father’s job in the rock and roll industry enabled him to see hundreds of legendary performances by artists like Freddie Mercury, Prince and Bruce Springsteen while he was just a boy. When he’s not channelling his childhood idols, Luke is an ambassador for a number of health charities, a member of the NSW Arts Advisory Panel, a teaching artist with the Sydney Opera House’s Creative Leadership in Learning Program. He is also a song writing mentor with the Sydney Children’s Hospital’s Chronic Illness Peer Support program [ChIPS] with whom he wrote and recorded the track “Wake up Call” in 2021. He believes strongly that music and storytelling can play a transformative role in health, education and society. Among his more obscure awards is the title of “Sydney’s Sexiest man voice”, which he won in a competition on a once-popular Sydney radio station.

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