Sociable

Monday, December 23, 2013

Billy Yates and Rich Fagan at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Billy Yates and Rich Fagan at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 


Alabama Music Office. com goes to Alabama's Gulf Coast to attend the Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 2013. Billy Yates and Rich Fagan entertained at Pirates Cove on Josephine Point near Elberta, Alabama.

Billy Yates may be best known as a hit songwriter, having written songs for some of Country Music's finest including: George Strait, Kenny Chesney, Sara Evans, Joe Nichols, John Michael Montgomery, Gary Allan, Tracy Lawrence, Jeff Bates, Chris Young, Adam Gregory, Sammy Kershaw, Doug Stone, Michael Peterson, Ricochet, The Oak Ridge Boys, Ricky Van Shelton, Gene Watson, Rhonda Vincent and David Allan Coe, not to mention the George Jones' classic, "I Don't Need Your Rockin' Chair" and his Grammy-winning smash, "Choices".

Billy Yates is also one fine honky tonk singer! After a string of efforts at a number of labels that began with a developmental deal at RCA in the mid 80's, plus full recording contracts at Curb Records and Almo Sounds (which produced his top twenty hit, "Flowers"), and his most recent major label outing on Columbia Records, Yates now has nine CD's to his credit, including his latest critically acclaimed disc, "Just Be You".

Those years of working with so many great companies has earned Yates the education that has now equipped him with the tools needed to operate his own, M.O.D. (My Own Damn) Record Label. He tours Europe extensively where the recently named European CMA Male Vocalist of the Year also dominates the airplay charts there with his smooth style of traditional country music.

Learn more about Billy Yates at www.billyyates.com.

Richard Fagan (born April 24, 1947) is an American songwriter and musician.[1] He has had six top ten singles and 18 charted singles on the Billboard Country charts. Fagan's songs have been recorded by Neil Diamond, George Strait, John Michael Montgomery, Clay Walker, Ricochet, Hank Williams, Jr., George Jones, Shania Twain, Patty Loveless, Collin Raye, Shenandoah, The Crickets, Jason & the Scorchers, The Blues Brothers Band and many others.
In 1979 his song "The Good Lord Loves You" was recorded by Neil Diamond and released on the September Morn album. The song charted in the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number 67 in April 1980.[2] Fagan accomplished nine Billboard Country chart singles in the 1990s including two of John Michael Montgomery's number one singles: Be My Baby Tonight and Sold (The Grundy County Auction Incident). Fagan had three additional songs on the Billboard Country charts in the 2000s, including the song "Why Can't We All Just Get a Long Neck?" that appears on the Hank Williams, Jr. album, I'm One of You. Source: Wikipedia

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Larry T Wilson at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Larry T Wilson at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Alabama's Gulf Coast to attend the Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 2013. The festival would not be the same without Larry T Wilson. We are all so very thankful that Larry T is back!

Larry's cuts: Country singer Sammy Kershaw recorded "Too Far Gone to Leave," co-written by Wilson and Rock Killough in 1994. His "The House at the End of the Road" was a hit for vocal group 4-Runner and was also done in bluegrass style by Nashville's Larry Cordell for a Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute album. Other successful cuts include Cherie Austin's "No More Chasing Rainbows," Marty Rabon's "Take Jesus As Your Lawyer" and David Frizell's "Charlie Loves Hazel."
Larry Travis Wilson sings and plays sitting down these days, and not by choice.

One of the Gulf Coast's most popular and powerful performers for the last couple of decades, "Larry T.," as everyone calls him, has had a setback, one that many folks might consider a major one. As a result of a bone infection, he had to have the lower part of his right leg amputated in early February. For now, he is relying on a walker and a little help from a friend to get him to and from his favorite place — the stage.

But even while recuperating at the Fairhope Health and Rehab nursing home, he did not stay idle. He managed to catch rides from his hospital bed to perform at favorite haunts like the North Shore Grill in Orange Beach and the Silver Moon Lounge in Perdido Key. As long as he was back when the doors closed at midnight, the facility's administrators had no problem with his unique brand of out-patient therapy.

"It was the best medication I could have been on," he said. "When they told me I could check myself out and go play some gigs, I was like, 'Are you kidding me?' Some people were, like, 'I can't believe you're doing that,' but I was thinking, 'I can't imagine me not doing this!'"

More at: http://blog.al.com/entertainment-press-register/2011/04/coastal_songwriter_larry_t_wil.html

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Kim Carson at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Kim Carson at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Alabama's Gulf Coast to attend Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 2013. After their gigs many meet to catch up on what's happening in the world of songwriting. Kim Carson was on hand to sing some new material for us.
Kim Carson's motto is "Don't Fear The Twang!"

Kim has just finished her 10th CD to be released in Europe at the end of June and in the United States in October. Her forthcoming album "Enough Heart Left to Break" is good ol' honky-tonk music with a dance hall sound that is chock full of fiddles and steel guitars.

Growing up in rural Texas and Oklahoma and now based out of New Orleans, LA, Kim's sound is a gumbo of original high energy roots rock and renegade honky tonk music.

Kim Carson has been named "Best Country Artist" by readers of OffBeat magazine eight times. Carson has made a name for herself as the undisputed "Queen of Louisiana Honky Tonk Music" and distinguished herself as a formidable Country songwriter. After Hurricane Katrina, Carson moved to Texas to form "Buffalo Speedway", a Renegade Honky Tonk band in 2005. Kim moved back to rebuild her house in New Orleans in 2008.
Kim and her band tour extensively in Europe and have performed at the Country Music Festival in Silkeborg, Denmark / Routes du Rock Festival in Lavardac, France / Country Music Festival Vinstra, Norway /Western Experience -- Scheveningen, Netherlands / Country Rendez-Vous in Craponne, France / Mirande among other festivals. Her band "The Enablers" currently includes New Orleans players Jeb Rault on guitar, Marshall Baker on violin, Bruce Tyner on pedal steel and Wayne Lohr on piano....and sometimes Ian Smith an Mike Kobrin on trumpets.

"Kim Carson is as fine a roots/country singer as someone like Rosie Flores. Her brand of high Octane Twang is traditional without being retro." -Alex Rawls (Offbeat Magazine)

"Carson's combination of Honky Tonk and Rockabilly, Tonkabilly if you will, is as unique as her always enthusiastic stage show." -Fran Thomspson (Mullet Wrapper)

"Kim -- On a recent trip from Alaska to Nashville, I was lucky enough to catch your set at Billy Block's....blew me away. I produce and host a weekly show here in Alaska called the Arctic Cactus Hour and would like to add your new disc to my playlist" - Jim Stratton, Arctic Cactus Hour, KNBA Anchorage, AK

Carson's music is the real deal country with influences from Buck Owens, Merle Haggard, and Loretta Lynn. "She's less Diva and more Honky Tonk girl."

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

What the preachers said about Johnny Wyker


What the preachers said about Johnny Wyker

Alabama Music Office.com goes to the First Bible Church in Decatur, Alabama to attend "Celebration of Life," John D Wyker's Memorial Service.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Mike Nash at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Mike Nash at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Alabama's Gulf Coast to attend the Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 2013. After the gigs many songwriter's meet and learn from each other and renew old friendships. In that setting we find Mike Nash.

Mike Nash is a performer and songwriter raised in Nashville, TN. Unlike most musicians who move to Nashville to find their way Mike chose a different path, moving from his hometown to find his professional music beginnings in Cocoa Beach, FL. A published songwriter and front man for the Southern Drawl Band, Mike Nash has been writing for years but has only recently begun making a name by touring the club circuit throughout the US performing his music.  During his relatively short tenure, Mike has worked with Grammy and Dove Award winning producer Travis Wyrick recording "Against the Grain" and "Another Day in Paradise" which won album of the year and spawned a #1 song of the year and a #13 song of the year on the trop rock radio charts as well as beating out artists such as Brad Paisley & Jason Aldean to claim a #50 spot on the country radio top 100 songs of 2012. Mike also had his song "Lil Bit" chosen for GAC's Living Countryfied television program. In addition, his band Southern Drawl Band was voted band of the year 2012 beating out some of the country's top mid-level touring acts. Mike has opened for such artists as Eddie Money, Neil McCoy, Marshall Tucker, Uncle Cracker, Pure Prairie League, Cross Canadian Ragweed and Con Hunley as well as being one of only two artists ever to play Knoxville Tennessee's Neyland Stadium (the other being Kenny Chesney). Mike Nash is a unique writer who prides himself on a wide variety of songs to entertain even the most critical and a live performance charisma that cannot be missed.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

CW Colt and Sam Cooper late night at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


CW Colt and Sam Cooper late night at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival

Alabama Music Office.com goes to a late night session with C.W. Colt and Sam Cooper.

In 1958, at the age of 5, C.W. won his first talent contest with his Elvis impression, singing and dancing. When he was 10 years old Chet Atkins taught him his first guitar chords and he started his own band in San Antonio Texas. C.W. met Webb Pierce, Ernest Tubbs and Ray Price during this time and began performing for basic trainees on Lackland Air Force Base.


At 12 years of age C.W. was entertaining troops in the Philippines, Thailand and Okinawa. Moving to Colorado at 16, C.W. mastered the banjo and fiddle, playing on a mountain. He started the band named Free Lunch that included World Class slide guitarist, Sonny Landreth.

At 25, C.W. recorded "America The Beautiful" at Marty Robbins studio in Nashville and put together 'The America the Beautiful" show. During this time, he performed with Hank Thompson, Buck Trent and Sons of the Pioneers.

Turning 30, C.W. was working with Jimmy Buffet, Alvin Lee, Bo Diddley and Edgar Winters. He worked with Rita Coolidge, Bill Champlin, and Ronnie Hawkins's in Jim Carrey's first movie Copper mountain in Colorado. Later that year he recorded "The Cowboys Lullaby" with Patsy Montana and toured with her for 2 years.

In Santa Rosa California, at age 35, C.W. had the pleasure of performing shows with Chet Atkins, Waylon Jennings, Jon Conley, Roy Clark, Doug Kershaw and worked for Narada Michael Walden.

Since relocating to Key West Florida, where CW has resided for the last 20 years, He has compiled 40 years of his original songs and recording the Legends and Treasures series, his personal collection of music.

In C.W.'s more recent work he has opened for legends such as: Blood, Sweat and Tears, Three Dog Night, Paul Cotton, Mac McAnally and more!

To see CW Colt perform, check out his website to view his monthly calendar or inquire about his private Key West House Concert series.
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Nashville, TN based producer/songwriter/musician/performer Sam Cooper, Jerricat Music (SESAC), Jericat Music (BMI), Red Heart Records, Red Heart Music. All music on the "songs" page is written/co-written and/or produced/co-produced by Sam. To hear and/or download Red Heart Records' release of Ray Dahrouge's holiday album, "IT'S CHRISTMAS EVERYWHERE" (click the "albums" link ). Downloads of these and many other songs are also available at the "songs" page of this site. For hundreds of photos and latest information related to Sam, please visit Facebook, Reverbnation and/or MySpace at .com/samcooperjericatmusic. To contact Sam and/or to be added to his e-mail list, send a message with full name and contact information directly to jericat@yahoo.com.

Larry Cordle and Jerry Salley at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Larry Cordle and Jerry Salley at Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Josephine Point near Elberta, Alabama to attend a performance by Larry Cordle and Jerry Salley for the Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival 2013.
Larry Cordle (November 16, 1949) was born in eastern Kentucky and is an American country and bluegrass singer-songwriter. Cordle is most famous for his song "Murder on Music Row", which was recorded by George Strait and Alan Jackson and received the CMA Award for Song of the Year in 2000.
Cordle has written songs for Garth Brooks ("Against the Grain", also recorded by The Oak Ridge Boys), Mountain Heart ("Bitter Harvest"), Ricky Skaggs ("Callin' Your Name", "Highway 40 Blues", "Heartbreak Hurricane"), Loretta Lynn ("Country In My Genes"), George Strait ("Hollywood Squares"), Trisha Yearwood ("Lonesome Dove"), Kathy Mattea ("Lonesome Standard Time"), Diamond Rio ("Mama, Don't Forget To Pray For Me") and Bradley Walker ("When I'm Hurtin'") .
Cordle also has a career of his own, with his band Lonesome Standard Time. He founded the band in 1990 with his friend Glen Duncan. He received a Grammy nomination for the group's debut album, self-titled, in 1992. In 2005 Cordle's band played at the Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival. On his album 2007 "Took Up and Put Down", his sings "The First Train Robbery"; a song about the Reno Gang written from brother William Reno's perspective.[1]
Along with friends Carl Jackson and Jerry Salley, the trio (Cordle, Jackson & Salley) recorded the song "You're Running Wild" on the Louvin Brothers Tribute on Universal South Records, which features numerous country music stars singing songs made famous by the legendary duo. Entitled Livin', Lovin', Losin': Songs of the Louvin Brothers, this project won the 2004 Grammy for Country Album Of The Year. The trio tours across the country and performs the hits they wrote for others.
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Jerry Salley is an American country and bluegrass singer-songwriter. Salley won SESAC's 2003 "Country Music Songwriter of the Year" award.
Salley has been writing and singing in Nashville, Tennessee since 1982. To date, he has had 300 songs recorded in his career, including by Reba McEntire ("I'm Gonna Take That Mountain"), Wild Rose ("Breaking New Ground"), John Anderson ("I Fell in the Water"), Wade Hayes ("How Do You Sleep at Night"), and ten (10) top twenty gospel songs.
Salley has had songs recorded by Toby Keith, Patty Loveless, Brad Paisley, Joe Nichols, Darryl Worley, The Whites, Loretta Lynn, and many others.
Salley is a six-time Dove Award nominee, and won a Dove award in 1990 for Inspirational Song of the Year. He won the award for co-writing "His Strength is Perfect", with Steven Curtis Chapman.
Numerous other nationally known country, gospel and bluegrass artists have also recorded Jerry's songs, including: IIIrd Tyme Out, The Seldom Scene, Mountain Heart, Lonesome River Band, Dale Ann Bradley, Jeff & Sheri Easter, The Isaacs, Bradley Walker, Newfound Road, Wildfire, Terri Gibbs, Kyle Petty, Barbara Fairchild, The Kingsmen, The Florida Boys, The Martins, Don Rigsby, Rock Country, David Peterson & 1946, Jake Hess, Lordsong, The Ruppes, Rebecca Lynn Howard, Melba Montgomery, Gary Stewart, Shenandoah, and Vern Jackson.
As an artist, Salley has performed on numerous stage shows, including the Grand Ole Opry. He has also appeared on Late Show with David Letterman, Regis and Kathie Lee, Today Show, and several shows on the former TNN network.
In addition to his Dove recognition from the Gospel Music Association, Jerry has received numerous awards from different associations for his songwriting accomplishments, from the IBMA, NSAI, SESAC, and Gospel Voice Magazine. Along with friends Carl Jackson and Larry Cordle, the trio (Cordle, Jackson & Salley) recorded the song "You're Running Wild" on the Louvin Brothers Tribute on Universal South Records, which features numerous country music stars singing songs made famous by the legendary duo. Entitled Livin', Lovin', Losin': Songs of the Louvin Brothers, this project won the 2004 Grammy for Country Album Of The Year. The trio tours across the country and performs the hits they wrote for others.

Source: Wikipedia

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Dick Cooper talks about Johnny Wyker during Interview


Dick Cooper talks about Johnny Wyker during Interview 


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Shoal Creek near Florence, Alabama to interview Dick Cooper.
This interview took place Wednesday, October 2, 2013. Within the interview I asked Dick about many that made up the Muscle Shoals music world. Of course, Johnny Wyker's name came up.

I have almost 50 years of memories of Johnny. The one that comes to mind right now was when I called and told him his song "Baby Ruth" was to be included on Dick's Hat Band's release 'Got The Whole Town Talkin.' He was so very appreciative. His excitement was like a kid with a new bike under the Christmas tree. He carried on for quite some time thanking everyone that worked for Front Row Productions. Too bad his name was misspelled on the album.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Troy Brannon at FloraBama for Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Troy Brannon at FloraBama for Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to FloraBama on the Gulf Coast to attend a performance by Troy Brannon for Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival.

Troy Brannon is from the Baldwin County / Gulf Coast, AL area. He has been playing music professionally for 18 years. He began playing the fiddle at the age of 10, and also plays the piano. In high school, he played the fiddle in a local bluegrass band, and then began playing and singing in local bars, and restaurants around the area. His early influences include Garth Brooks, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Billy Joel, Bob Segar, and the Allman Brothers.

He attended the University of South Alabama on two vocal scholarships, while playing music at night. Troy began songwriting in early '90, and got recognition from the National Coalition for the Homeless for his song "God Made The Homeless,too", which they used in a multi-media slide show. He is also getting recognition in Nashville for his writing. Troy has been the front man in numerous bands, The Midnight Riders, Grits N' Pieces, etc.

Troy is a favorite on the Gulf Coast with solid fan bases in Alabama, Florida, Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi, and he is a regular performer at the world famous Flora Bama, on the Florida/Alabama line.

Troy has shared the stage with such greats as Trisha Yearwood, Taylor Hicks, Jeff Cook from the legendary band "Alabama", Percy Sledge, Billy Joe Shaver, and he is a regular at the Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival, held every year at the Flora Bama in Perdido, FL. There he has shared the stage with writers who have had hits with Jason Aldean, Toby Keith, Willie Nelson, Trace Adkins, George Strait ; the list goes on and on.

Troy's band simply named the "Troy Brannon Band" , is as energetic and entertaining as they come. They play all over the southeast and abroad, playing weddings, entertainment venues, festivals, and as an opening act.

Troy is also CEO of his new baby, a record label called Phoenix Records and Entertainment.

If you want a show and music full of energy, versatility, and just plain fun, Troy Brannon is your man !!!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Randall Bramblett Band at Bama Theatre


Randall Bramblett Band at Bama Theatre


Alabama Music Office.com goes to the historic Bama Theatre in downtown Tuscaloosa, Alabama to attend a performance by the Randall Bramblett Band. They opened and backed up Chuck Leavell on this very special night.

Randall Bramblett has kept very busy over the years, selling out shows and being sought out by the best artists in the business. Last year found him playing with the Allman Brothers at the Beacon Theater in NYC, New Year's Eve with Widespread Panic, (he leads the MegaBlaster Horns,) and at New Orleans JazzFest with Chuck Leavell, in addition to performing on a new CD and touring with Bonnie Raitt and his own band.

Randall's real claim to fame is his exhilarating and heart-felt live show. An honest and true performer, Randall and his band leave it all on the stage every night, and his many devoted fans have taken notice. With headlining slots at many theaters and festivals, and numerous sold out performances, Bramblett's already shining star continues to rise. Each performance converts a new group of listeners into die-hard fans.

A jewel of Southern music, Randall Bramblett thrives on his new release, The Bright Spots, due May 14 on New West Records. Fresh off the inclusion of one of his songs on Bonnie Raitt's Grammy-winning album Slipstream, he has put together a masterful recording soaked with the soulful feel that has defined his music and that of his Southern contemporaries like Gregg Allman and Warren Haynes. From Howlin' Wolf to Ray Charles and "dark Motown" influences, sitar samples, gospel strains and even a snippet of water-splashing pygmies, The Bright Spots mixes diverse elements that dovetail into Randall's finest album yet.

"One of the South's most lyrical and literate songwriters." Rolling Stone
"You can't do better than Randall Bramblett" Bonnie Raitt

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Chuck Leavell at Bama Theatre


Chuck Leavell at Bama Theatre 


Alabama Music Office.com goes to the historic Bama Theatre in downtown Tuscaloosa, Alabama to attend a performance by Chuck Leavell. I have attended several performances by Chuck Leavell. In my humble opinion this was his best performance. He seemed to enjoy every moment he spent on stage.
Chuck Leavell played a sold-out concert at the Bama Theatre almost four years ago. Since then, he has performed on both of John Mayer's newest CDs, acted in a Billy Bob Thornton movie in a scene with Robert Duvall, recorded and released a tribute CD to the pioneers of blues piano, written and published Growing a Better America about saving our environment, headlined the Blue's Stage at New Orleans Jazz Fest, was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Grammy for his years with the Allman Brothers Band and played 29 tour venues in three countries with the Rolling Stones.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Gabriel Tajeu Interview


Gabriel Tajeu Interview


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Highland Music in Birmingham, Alabama to interview Gabriel Tajeu.

*Gabriel Tajeu-R&B Folk Rock Artist   by Jerry W. Henry
I met with Gabriel Tajeu at Highland Music for our interview. It was a convenient place for both of us to meet. His new album, Finding My Way, is getting lots of attention. I recently recorded him on video when he played for Secret Stages. The comments on YouTube tell us they think Gabriel is a renaissance man! His vocals are described as “Clarity, strength of voice. Nice, catchy rhythm.” In other words, folks like him.


Gabriel was raised in upstate New York but went to high school in Auburn, Alabama.  He went back up north for college but now calls Birmingham home. He grew up taking piano lessons and was in the band during high school. Gabriel came from a musical family. His mother plays piano and his brother plays trumpet and keyboards. His father is from Kenya;  has a distinctive voice. Gabriel did not start singing until he went to college.  He joined an acapella class on a whim but found he really could sing. He began to develop his voice then and guitar soon followed. That has led to him playing around town with the cover band, Bonus Round. That gig has lasted for almost 10 years now.

He has branched out and has been doing his own shows for the last couple of years. He released his first album last May. He has a direct approach to his songwriting.  He said, “I listen to a lot of different music.  When I compare my music to others, I don’t use as many fancy metaphors and similes. I think my style is more conversational. It comes from a place that says this is what it is and this is how I was feeling. There is something to be said about simplicity. With some of my lyrics I manage to convey an emotion or feeling or a time in my life without directly saying it. I have come to appreciate my more stripped down style of songwriting. I am working on some music right now that is a little more poetic in some ways. The content in Finding My Way is poetic by nature because the songs represent what I was going through. I think other people can relate to that. The next album that I am working on have a  few lines in there that I think people are going to say ‘Oh that’s a great line!”

Gabriel calls his music “R&B Folk Rock” because it is not quite R&B. He uses all live instruments and is heavy on the drums, electric guitar and bass. His vocal delivery, the harmonies and the underlying cord structures are from traditional R&B. He says, “There is a little bit of everything, it’s music! Like I said about the songwriting, it’s something people can relate to, it’s easy, it’s out there, but it’s advanced in the sense that I’ve got incredible musicians playing.  The song structure isn’t as typical as verse, chorus, verse, chorus, bridge, verse, chorus.  There is more depth to the actual cord structure. That’s how I describe my own music.”

Those incredible musicians that played on his album, Finding My Way, were Mark Lanter who plays drums and helped Gabriel polish some of his songs. Allen Barlow (Homewood School of Music owner) on guitar. Matt Slocum plays keys. He used 6 different bass players Sean Michael Ray, Beau Treadwell, Abe Becker, Luke Reynolds  Jaron Olevski and Gary Justiss. The horns featured Chad Fisher on trombone, Gary Wheat on tenor Sax, Ledama Tajeu (his brother) on trumpet. Additional musicians were Matt Wiley on piano, David Crenshaw on percussion, Sam Pointer on guitar and Bethany Borg Martin on violin. Finding My Way was recorded at AudioState 55 in Woodlawn and engineered by James Bevelle.  He tells me about James, “Incredible! He brought my music to life. He helped polish things up.” He adds, “Really everybody that has been involved in this since day one has been phenomenal musicians or phenomenal at their craft whether it be playing or recording.  I am very blessed to have been associated with all those phenomenal people. I had other friends that gave input and help me develop ideas.”

Where does he see the future for himself? He answered, “I really see myself going and playing a lot of live shows. I would like to get in front of as many people as I can. The music lends its self to festivals as more than half the album is up-tempo, but also lends its self to coffee shops. More toward listening environments because we can take the instruments on the album and strip them down to just a couple of people. Some of the songs are slower songs that you can really vibe out and feel some emotions. I just want to get out there and play. I want to have as many people to listen to my music as possible.”

Gabriel tells me, “I write these songs because I am connecting with myself. There is something that I have to say. There is something that I have to put out there. In creating that, you create a connection with other people. You hope that they will get what you are saying and hope they will feel that way. When I hear a song on the radio and it touches me I know that someone gave that song to me. So as a musician I feel it is my responsibility to give that back. As a musician I have been blessed with certain talents. If can sing a song that helps somebody it’s my responsibility to do so. I have gotten twitter message all the way from Japan.  I have people from Japan that resonate with this album. It’s beautiful to see the music crosses all kinds of boundaries. At the end of the day you are connecting with people and exploring our emotions. We have to do that as a society.”
     
Gabriel Tajeu’s Finding My Way is available from all major outlets, iTunes, Amazon, Spotify or his website where he will have more merchandise soon.

*This interview was published in the December 2013 Issue of The Leaf

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

J.K. Terrell CD Release Party at Rhythm and Brews


J.K. Terrell CD Release Party at Rhythm and Brews


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Rhythm and Brews in downtown Tuscaloosa, Alabama to attend J.K. Terrell's CD Release Party.

*J.K. Terrell-New Wrinkle  by Jerry W. Henry

I can't remember when I first met J.K. Terrell. Maybe it was when he was playing behind Johnny Shines or when I helped record Lost In The Mail. It could have been when he played with Beanland or the John Kilzer Band. Regardless our friendship goes way back.

I have always known J.K. as a percussionist and blues harp player. He is a seasoned, road-tested and proven musician. When he told me a couple of years ago that he was going to fulfill his dream to cut an album, I encouraged him. I assumed it would be an instrumental album or someone else would be the vocalist.

He has never been a vocalist and that part of the recording process scared him. But J.K. was determined to deliver what had been churning in his brain for years. The only alternative was for him to learn to sing. He brought in the best vocal coach in this part of the country. I let them use my studio and after weeks of coaching, he was ready to record.

I am not going to tell you that J.K. Terrell is the world's greatest singer. What I am going to tell you is he won't be embarrassed by the vocals on his album. His vocals are heartfelt, filled with emotion and really good clarity. His project proves you can teach an old dog a new trick.

J.K. wasn't looking to be compared to other artists.  He knew recreating music is more effective than creating it.  He also knows this usually produces recordings that are only satisfactory -- the sound is familiar and well performed, but lacks anything that demands attention. J.K.'s formula was to deliver the sounds that have been churning in his head all these years.

His album is appropriately titled, New Wrinkle, since J.K. is now receiving his social security check every month. He recently retired from the University of Alabama School of Social Work. New Wrinkle was recorded at Southern Breeze Studios in Tuscaloosa. It was engineered & mixed by John Kliner and mastered by Joey Laycock. The musicians for the project are Jason Speegle-guitars, Bruce Hopper-bass, John Kilner-drums, Matt Slocum-keyboards and NotSoSlim & Jann McCutchen Simpson-background vocals.

Though the disc stays true to roots music, it features a wide range of styles and rhythms. From the Chicago-flavored "Blues Had a Baby" to the Ry Cooder beat of "Down in Hollywood" to Scott Boyer's "Don't Hit Me" to the Jay Z/Hugo-inspired "99 Problems" each song expresses a unique personality.

My favorites was the album's only original, "Right Outside" and the cover of Tom Waits "Jockey Full of Bourbon." Another couple of great choices are Wet Willie's Jimmy Hall's "Rendezvous with the Blues" and Slim Harpo's "I Want To Be With You Tonight." Repeating myself, the songs are diverse, and fit perfectly to the record.

New Wrinkle is a southern blues album that grabs you from the beginning and holds you until the end. This album has a well-rounded selection of songs that feature J.K.'s great harmonica and percussion playing; no overplaying or dominating. New Wrinkle is a well-balanced album through out.
New Wrinkle can be purchased at CD Baby and Amazon and locally at some independent record stores.
*Published in November 2013 edition of The Leaf

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Jason Isbell in Birmingham, Alabama


Jason Isbell in Birmingham, Alabama 

Alabama Music Office.com goes to Railroad Park in downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a performance by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, headlining for the Revival Music Festival. Revival Music Fest was on Saturday, August 24th 2013 at Railroad Park with music acts; The CO, Elenowen, Leagues, The Apache Relay, The Dirty Guv'nahs, Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors and Jason Isbell!  Food trucks were on-site so folks enjoy some of Birmingham's finest culinary offerings!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Venue Owners and You, the Musician! By Jerry W. Henry


    Venue Owners and You, the Musician!   By Jerry W. Henry

In this part of the country the responsibility for promoting a gig rests on the bands shoulders. This really makes no sense to me. To my way of thinking the venue owner’s ultimate goal should be to build a fan base for their venue. To get people that will trust that you will have good music in your venue every night.

 There seems to me to be too much at stake for venue owners not to be truly interested in the music presented in their venue. They know that live music is important to the demographic that they are trying to reach. They need to reach out to that demographic in a professional way. When a venue owner only thinks about how many people a band can bring to their venue puts them in a never-ending cycle. You are gambling on each band doing their job as promoters. How effective this system is depends on each band.


Fact is people follow bands, not the venue. Bands that come to your venue and play their very best is all that should be expected of a band but we all know better. To my way of thinking, show promotion is a shared responsibility between band and venue. The band knows that without a performance, there would be no money coming into the venue in the first place. But remember just because a venue has live music every night doesn't mean the music pulls in the crowd. Musicians and venue owners need to find a common ground of mutual respect, professionalism, and measured expectation.

There is a very interesting dynamic between venues and musicians. Bands look to increase their following by sharing their music with the people who love it and those who will come to love it. Venues seek great shows with bigger audiences and more sales. There’s definitely a responsibility on both ends to do more for the other and while I think many local venues and artists understand that now, that bond can be strengthened.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Larry and The Loafers at Kelly Ingram VFW in downtown Birmingham



Larry and The Loafers at Kelly Ingram VFW in downtown Birmingham


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Kelly Ingram VFW in downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a performance by Larry and The Loafers.

Larry Parker has been rockin' since 1956, when he first appeared onstage at the Alabama Theatre in Birmingham for Jim Lucas's Teen Time Talent Search. Jim Lucas, a DJ at the famous teenage hotspot, the Skycastle, located at Eli's Drive-In, told Larry then that groups were hot at the time, so after his solo performance, Larry organized his first of several doo-wop groups. This first and most notable of these acts was the 'Swing'n Teens'. Appearances by Larry along with Rodney Richmond, Wayne Russell, and Tommy Clements on television and stage, and their voices being heard on radio commercials, backed by the Nomads, gave them recognition as Birmingham's hottest vocal group at the time. The commercial for Liberty Trousers 'Skeet Pants' entitled "Skeets Are Neat, Little Mama" was so popular that records were sold at the radio stations that played it. The 'Swing'n Teens' sang hit songs of the day made popular by such vocal groups as Danny and the Juniors, the Midnighters, the Del-Vikings, and the Diamonds. Any song that was popular, they learned to perform with perfect harmony. Larry, an innovative student at Woodlawn High School, had organized a talent show that shocked the teachers and the principal - when his group sang "Little Girl of Mine" and "Come Go with Me". When the students began clapping and shouting with approval, Larry's group was told to leave the auditorium. Rock 'n Roll had indeed arrived at Woodlawn. A summer job as a disc jockey at WIXI AM-1480 radio in Irondale gave Larry access to the studio and recording equipment after hours. Larry, along with guitarist Hal Painter and a couple of friends, borrowed two guitars and amps and a part of a set of drums, and here on a late summer night Larry wrote and recorded his soon-to-be hit "Panama City Blues". The station played the song on the air the next day and the teenagers loved it. When Larry needed a label to release "Panama City Blues" on, Mr. Homer Milam allowed Larry to release it on his own local Reed label because, as Mr. Milam said, "It's a hit!". With the release of "Panama City Blues" in the summer of 1960, Larry formed the group called 'Larry and the Loafers'. The group was comprised of local multi-talented musicians - among them Charles Giambrone on vocals, bass, trumpet, guitar, piano, and drums. Charles later performed with 'Bob Cain and the CainBreakers' and also had his own group - 'Just Friends'. The Loafers' drummer was Dale Serrano, another multi-talented local who brought his dance and show background to the group. Wayne Gross on guitar, saxophone, and clarinet and Johnny Nations on piano and vocals rounded out the band. Many of Birmingham's top musicians served a stint as members of the Loafers over the years and have added to the legend and mystique of 'Larry and the Loafers'. In 1983, after a midnight phone call from Dale Serrano, the idea to have a Rock 'n Roll reunion for Birmingham local bands was born. In June of that year, the Boutwell Auditorium was the scene of "The Rock 'n Roll Reunion", Birmingham's best live in-person stage show ever. Performing artists included Sammy Salvo, Henry Lovoy, the Rockin' Rebellions, the Premiers, the RamRods, the Nomads, Rooster and the Townsmen, and others - headlined by Larry and the Loafers - all encouraged and promoted by the legendary Duke Rumore, Birmingham's godfather of Rock 'n Roll. Larry Parker, as Larry and the Loafers, has recorded on Heart Records, Ed Boutwell Studios in Birmingham, with musicians Ronnie Eades, Barry Beckett, Glen Lane, and the 'Roulettes', Bill Lowery and Master Sounds Studio in Atlanta where he wrote and recorded "Let's Go to the Beach" (co-written by Emery Gordy who later produced for the group Alabama and played with the Atlanta band 'St. John and the Cardinals', and Fame Recording Studio in Memphis with producer Sonny Limbo where he joined the 'Hombres', Booker T. Jones, and the 'Memphis Strings' and recorded "Sunshine" and "Paper Man". Larry, as of this date is alive and well, and is stage-bound with a new 'Larry and the Loafers' band on the "More to Follow Rock 'n Roll Tour". Larry has been a longtime member of the Birmingham Record Collectors and is always good for one of his million fascinating stories about his life in music and performing. He is truly appreciated for the fond musical memories he has created for his vast listening audience of fans and is truly loved by all of us who are lucky enough to know him personally. It is most deserving that our Larry Parker be honored as an inductee into the 2006 Class of the BRC Music Hall of Fame. - See more at: http://alabamamusicoffice.com/artists-a-z/p/866-parker-larry-larry-and-the-loafers#sthash.omA1mY1p.dpuf

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Tommy Gardner and Patti Townsend at Kentuck Festival



Tommy Gardner and Patti Townsend at Kentuck Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Kentuck Festival at Kentuck Park in Northport, Alabama to attend a performance by Tommy Gardner and Patti Townsend.

Below is part of an interview I did with Patti Townsend which was published in the Planet Weekly in 2007.

You are best known for performing with Tommy Gardner. When did you and Tommy get together? 
I would sit in with Tommy back in the 80's. In 1993 Barbara (Norlin Grimes) and I did an oldies band called Peer Review with Brian Chandler, Bill Cole, Lee Foster, and Frank Morris. We got to do CityFest with that band. Even while I was with Peer Review I was gigging with Tommy. I was with Peer Review for 4 years and then I went full time with Tommy. It's been great. With Tommy's improvisational style I have learned a lot about being in the moment. Reacting off of each other, reading his mind, getting a sense of really listening, doing things off the cuff. That's been great for me. He's like my brother and I feel so lucky to have a special musical relationship with him.

Can you tell us something that everyone needs to know about Tommy?
Nobody cares about a chord more than Tommy. Nobody cares about chord progressions or a different feel to something than Tommy. He is  searching for the perfect sound in everything he does. Tommy is consumed with that. He lives his music. It's so much a part of him. I have always been lucky to work with people that are better than I am. I have loved learning from people like Kenny Smitherman, Joe Rudd and Tommy. I have been blessed to have worked with Tuscaloosa's best. I've worked with Steve Sample, Jr., a excellent drummer. Buddy Martin, and Steve Jones with the Jazz Babies, both great players. I got to work with sax man Steve Black, Fred DeLoch, Tommy Sorrells, Greg Staggs, and Roy Potter which was one of the original members of the Litiers. Roy's back in town and doing a CD of the old Tuscaloosa greats.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Donnie Miller and Rude Awakening at MidTown Village in Tuscaloosa, Alabama


Donnie Miller and Rude Awakening at MidTown Village in Tuscaloosa, Alabama


Alabama Music Office.com goes to MidTown Village for their Music On The Green Concert Series in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. We went there to attend a performance by Donnie Miller and Rude Awakening Blues Band. Donnie Miller is founder and CEO at The National BLUES Network and is a Booking Agent. He books touring Blues bands in Alabama. Backing Donnie is Johnny Dalton on drums and Willie Bee on bass. They play Diamonds Sports Bar in Huntsville often.
It only takes one time hearing Nashville's Donnie Miller & Rude Awakening to hear the effects of lead singer Donnie Miller's lifelong training. Honing his vocals in church beginning at the age of 4, Donnie left home at 18 years old and toured the U.S. for 15 years before signing with SONY Records for his 1990 debut album, "ONE OF THE BOYS", with Cyndi Lauper & Tommy Shaw making guest appearances on backing vocals. Donnie began playing the blues in 1992, discovering just where he belongs in the music world. The current lineup of Donnie Miller and Rude Awakening has been touring and recording together for the last 7 years. With an incredible rhythm section behind him, scorching guitar solos & "from the soul" vocals burning through, this group pulls an audience up onstage with them and is a valuable crowd-pleasing entertainment option for ANY blues-focused venue or festival!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Belle Adair at Kentuck Festival


Belle Adair at Kentuck Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Kentuck Festival at Kentuck Park in Northport, Alabama to attend a performance by Belle Adair.

Press for The Brave and the Blue:
"...here in Alabama, there are bands like Belle Adair doing this kind of dreamy sound that has a connection to roots music but isn't directly derivative...It fits in really nicely with the new South sound."

— NPR Music

"Belle Adair's shifting, ambient music reveals a diversity of influence and an unwillingness to be pigeonholed. Deft navigation between existential grappling and lulling instrumentals is a trademark of the group's ambition: sophistication without pretension. The Brave and the Blue is a promising debut that leaves us looking forward to more."

---The Oxford American

"The Brave and the Blue glows with a deep, dusky aura. It's an ambitious collection of genre-straddling tunes"

---Spin

"The sweetness of Matt Green's voice carries echoes of Jeff Tweedy. The band, too, are like Wilco when the roots were still showing, with flashes of The Byrds and a note of country sadness."

— Uncut (8 out of 10)

"The Brave and the Blue packs a hefty punch. It's filled with songs that are brimming with sincerity and emotionality that's embellished with rich instrumentation and atmosphere."

---Paste

"The band's full-length debut The Brave and the Blue is chilled out, cosmic and expansive, like Sea Change-era Beck or post-Summerteeth Wilco."

---Nashville Scene

Press for the EP:

"This is Spartan-but-sophisticated pop music grounding itself with acoustic strings, harmonium, pedal steel guitar, and precise harmonies, yet never indulging the clich├ęs of Americana, country rock, or freak folk. Most of the music suits a lazy Sunday morning, but if called upon this group can rock in the manner of The Band and Tom Petty—something involving swirling organ riffs and, again, envy-inducing harmonies."

---David Pelfrey, Black & White (Birmingham, AL)

Monday, November 4, 2013

J.K. Terrell-New Wrinkle


I can’t remember when I first met J.K. Terrell. Maybe it was when he was playing behind Johnny Shines or when I helped record Lost In The Mail. It could have been when he played with Beanland or the John Kilzer Band. Regardless our friendship goes way back.
I have always known J.K. as a percussionist and blues harp player. He is a seasoned, road-tested and proven musician. When he told me a couple of years ago that he was going to fulfill his dream to cut an album, I encouraged him. I assumed it would be an instrumental album or someone else would be the vocalist.
He has never been a vocalist and that part of the recording process scared him. But J.K. was determined to deliver what had been churning in his brain for years. The only alternative was for him to learn to sing. He brought in the best vocal coach in this part of the country. I let them use my studio and after weeks of coaching, he was ready to record.
I am not going to tell you that J.K. Terrell is the world’s greatest singer. What I am going to tell you is he won’t be embarrassed by the vocals on his album. His vocals are heartfelt, filled with emotion and really good clarity. His project proves you can teach an old dog a new trick.
J.K. wasn’t looking to be compared to other artists.  He knew recreating music is more effective than creating it.  He also knows this usually produces recordings that are only satisfactory – the sound is familiar and well performed, but lacks anything that demands attention. J.K.’s formula was to deliver the sounds that have been churning in his head all these years.
His album is appropriately titled, New Wrinkle, since J.K. is now receiving his social security check every month. He recently retired from the University of Alabama School of Social Work. New Wrinkle was recorded at Southern Breeze Studios in Tuscaloosa. It was engineered & mixed by John Kliner and mastered by Joey Laycock. The musicians for the project are Jason Speegle-guitars, Bruce Hopper-bass, John Kilner-drums, Matt Slocum-keyboards and NotSoSlim & Jann McCutchen Simpson-background vocals.
Though the disc stays true to roots music, it features a wide range of styles and rhythms. From the Chicago-flavored "Blues Had a Baby" to the Ry Cooder beat of "Down in Hollywood" to Scott Boyer’s "Don’t Hit Me" to the Jay Z/Hugo-inspired "99 Problems" each song expresses a unique personality.
My favorites was the album’s only original, “Right Outside” and the cover of Tom Waits “Jockey Full of Bourbon.” Another couple of great choices are Wet Willie’s Jimmy Hall’s “Rendezvous with the Blues” and Slim Harpo’s “I Want To Be With You Tonight.” Repeating myself, the songs are diverse, and fit perfectly to the record.
New Wrinkle is a southern blues album that grabs you from the beginning and holds you until the end. This album has a well-rounded selection of songs that feature J.K.’s great harmonica and percussion playing; no overplaying or dominating. New Wrinkle is a well-balanced album through out.
New Wrinkle can be purchased at CD Baby and Amazon and locally at some independent record stores.

 This article published in the November 2013 Issue of The Leaf

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Rick and Jilda Watson at Kentuck Festival


Rick and Jilda Watson at Kentuck Festival


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Kentuck Festival 2013 at Kentuck Park in Northport, Alabama to attend a performance by Rick and Jilda Watson.
Rick & Jilda have performed at the Napa Valley Folk Festival, Montgomery Jubilee Fest, The Frank Brown International Songwriter's Festival, Daniel Day Art Gallery, Berkeley Bob's Coffee House, Just Folks Coffee House, Legal Grounds Coffee House, and Local Color, the Black Creek Festival, Jasper Arts Festival, The Raspberry in Sylacauga, Emma's Tea Room, Huntsville, Opelika Unplugged, and the Frog Festival.
They have opened for the late John Steward (Day Dream Believer), Dan Crary (in Ireland), The Kingston Trio, and Three on a String.
Their songs have been used in corporate videos, independent films and plays.
A song they co-wrote with Nashville songwriter Marty Rainone, The Night a Country Star Was Born, (recorded by Lamar Morris) charted for 2 weeks at #1 on the European Country Charts, three others have charted in the top 20 on ICC in Europe.
For the past couple years, their song, Bright Side (co-written with Tracy Reynolds) has aired on a MTV Reality Show in Canada.
They currently have songs playing in Australia and the UK as well.
Rick and Jilda live on a small farm. He is retired from AT&T and currently works as a writer/columnist for several newspapers in north central Alabama.
Jilda is a yoga therapist.
For booking information call:
205-648-9952 or email to jildawatson@gmail.com

Monday, October 28, 2013

Max Russell Art



Max Russell Art


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Florence, Alabama to interview and video the artwork of Max Russell. Many accomplished people are multitalented and active, even exceptional, in more than one area of creative expression. The multi-talented artist, Maxwell D. Russell, fits that description. Max uses an etching method in his paintings. He does very large music related multi-media collages. He is best known for his lamps which adorn many offices and homes in northwest Alabama.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Max Russell at DPs in Sheffield Alabama


Max Russell at DP's in Sheffield, Alabama


Alabama Music Office.com goes to DP"S Classic Grill in downtown Sheffield, Alabama to attend a performance by bluesman Max Russell.
Maxwell Russell was born and raised in northwest Alabama. He grew up in the Colbert County area, a region which has had its share of music greats. It is home to Muscle Shoals Sound, Fame and other famous, ground breaking studios. It is also the hometown of Blues legend W.C. Handy. Maxwell has been playing the guitar since he was a youngster but started his journey in the "business" at the age of 26, forming bands along the way and playing his originals at gigs. He writes music ranging from Country ballads and Country rockers to Blues and Jazz numbers and old time Rock 'n' Roll. Maxwell has a catalog of over 200 songs, not very many by today's song writing and music business standards but each song has a personal feeling or story that has taken a lifetime of work in preparation. . His music is influenced by old school Delta music, Slide, Boogie, Shuffles, Swing and old Rock 'n' Roll. He plays songs by the likes of Howling Wolf, Ike Turner, Muddy Waters, Carl Perkins and newer artists like Tony Joe White and Stevie Ray Vaughan to name a few. Max has played mainly throughout the southeast for festivals and clubs. In 2006, he entered and won first place in a Blues band competition in Birmingham, Alabama and was sent to Memphis for the international competition. He has two albums of original music with his band The Shakedown Kings,one is titled One Step From The Blues and the second is due for release in 2011. A solo Delta Blues album using only his unique collection of acoustic guitars and his scorching slide work on his 1929 National resonator guitar ,titled Once It Gets In Your Bones that was released in 2010 ...and his album Alabama Moon which was released in 2006 features some of the Shoals finest musicians. He is hosting his newest endeavor...The Shoals Songwriters Showcase a weekly event at local clubs that features up and coming signed and unsigned songwriters.Its a goal of his to help as many people as he can to get on stage and play their music . Max is still hammering away at the clubs with his band,and playing his acoustic Blues at as many venues and festivals as possible ... Any info needed for bookings or merchandise contact maxwellrussell256@gmail.com. Bookings for Maxwell Russell and the Shakedown Kings ...message me or call 256 856 1961..

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Max Russell Interview


Max Russell Interview

Alabama Music Office.com goes to Florence, Alabama to interview bluesman Maxwell 'Max' Russell. We did our interview in his home studio. Maxwell Russell was born and raised in northwest Alabama. He grew up in the Colbert County area, a region which has had its share of music greats. It is home to Muscle Shoals Sound, Fame and other famous, ground breaking studios. It is also the hometown of Blues legend W.C. Handy. Maxwell has been playing the guitar since he was a youngster but started his journey in the "business" at the age of 26, forming bands along the way and playing his originals at gigs. He writes music ranging from Country ballads and Country rockers to Blues and Jazz numbers and old time Rock 'n' Roll. His music is influenced by old school Delta music, Slide, Boogie, Shuffles, Swing and old Rock 'n' Roll. He plays songs by the likes of Howling Wolf, Ike Turner, Muddy Waters, Carl Perkins and newer artists like Tony Joe White and Stevie Ray Vaughan to name a few. Max has played mainly throughout the southeast for festivals and clubs. In 2006, he entered and won first place in a Blues band competition in Birmingham, Alabama and was sent to Memphis for the IBC competition. He has two independent albums and one live recording of solo Delta Blues music which will be released soon. He is working with his band The Shakedown Kings...a group of seasoned players from in and around the Muscle Shoals area. Max is still hammering away at the clubs with his band,and playing his acoustic blues.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Jason Isbell at Revival Music Festival


Jason Isbell at Revival Music Festival

Alabama Music Office.com goes to Railroad Park in downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a performance by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, headlining for the Revival Music Festival. Revival Music Fest was on Saturday, August 24th at Railroad Park with music acts; The CO, Elenowen, Leagues, The Apache Relay, The Dirty Guv'nahs, Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors and Jason Isbell!  Food trucks were on-site so folks enjoy some of Birmingham's finest culinary offerings!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Groove Daddy at Billy's in Northport, Alabama



Groove Daddy at Billy's in Northport, Alabama 


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Billy's in downtown Northport, Alabama to attend a performance by Groove Daddy. Based in Birmingham, Alabama, Groove Daddy has been playing and performing together since the early 1990s. The band plays Rhythm & Blues, Rock & Roll, Jazz, Motown, Ballads, Funk and Contemporary Gospel. The band also features originals written by Marc Phillips, some of which can be heard on his first solo recording "Color Me His".


The band's experience both in live settings and in the studio make it well suited for festivals, concerts, parties, banquets, weddings, receptions, corporate events, fundraisers, reunions, conventions.

Groove Daddy is Marc Phillips, Steve Sample, Barry Page, Joe Terry, Rich Daviston and Michael Panepento

Friday, October 11, 2013

The Birmingham Seven at Shelton State Community College


The Birmingham Seven at Shelton State Community College


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Shelton State Community College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama to attend a performance by The Birmingham Seven. The Birmingham Seven (B7) is a jazz septet comprised of some of the finest and most sought after jazz performers in the region. Their repertoire consists of transcriptions and adaptations from iconic recordings by artists such as Duke Ellington, Oliver Nelson, Gigi Gryce, and Lee Morgan as well as original arrangements and compositions by B7 members.

Rob Alley-Trumpet
Jon Noffsinger-Alto & Soprano Saxophone
Gary Wheat-Tenor Saxophone
Daniel Western-Baritone Saxophone
Tom Wolfe-Guitar
Chris Kozak-Double Bass
Michael Glaser-Drums

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Dan Penn inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Dan Penn inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Birmingham, Alabama to attend the Birmingham Record Collectors Show & Hall of Fame Inductions. In the late 1950's and early 1960's, R&B music was beginning to see some offshoots. Artists such as Jackie Wilson and Sam Cooke were taking R&B to a slightly smoother sound. Then came the Motown Sound - R&B blended together with a pop sound. There were artists such as Smokey Robinson, Mary Wells, and Marvin Gaye who took this sound to the top of the charts. While all this was going on in Detroit, New York, and Philadelphia, there was a growing R&B emergence that became known as 'Soul'. One of the early movers and shakers that brought soul music to the forefront of popularity was Dan Penn. Dan helped shape the development of southern soul music with legendary songwriting, musicianship, and production.

Dan Penn - 2013 Hall of Fame Bio-http://www.birminghamrecord.com/home/node/10073

Spooner Oldham inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Spooner Oldham inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Birmingham, Alabama to attend the Birmingham Record Collectors Show & Hall of Fame Inductions. Percy Sledge's "When a Man Loves a Woman", Wilson Pickett's "Mustang Sally", Arthur Alexander's "You Better Move On", and "I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)" by Aretha Franklin. These are classic songs that have transcended the natural change music went through in the late 60's. One common thing shared by these songs is the smooth keyboard sound that carries each of them. This sound was the result of one Spooner Oldham.

Spooner Oldham - 2013 Hall of Fame Bio-http://www.birminghamrecord.com/home/node/10076

Donnie Fritts inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Donnie Fritts inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Birmingham, Alabama to attend the Birmingham Record Collectors Show & Hall of Fame Inductions. Funky Donnie Fritts is known for many things: songwriter, session player, performer, soul man, pianist, and friend.

Donnie Fritts (born November 8, 1942, Florence, Alabama) is an American session musician and songwriter. A recording artist in his own right, he has been Kris Kristofferson's keyboardist for over forty years as of 2013. In 2008, he was inducted into the Alabama Music Hall of Fame.
He began playing drums in local bands such as the Satellites and Hollis Dixon at age 15, and later developed into a session keyboard player.
Working closely with Rick Hall, Billy Sherrill, Dan Penn, Arthur Alexander, David Briggs, Jerry Carrigan and Norbert Putnam, Fritts was involved in many of the early songs and recordings created in the Muscle Shoals music industry.

Donnie Fritts - 2013 Hall of Fame Bio-http://www.birminghamrecord.com/home/node/10077

Don Mosley inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Don Mosley inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Birmingham, Alabama to attend the Birmingham Record Collectors Record Show & Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies. Over the years Don Mosley of Sound of Birmingham studios has engineered or produced records that were released on Atlantic Records, MGM, Stax Records,  Rounder Records, Shelby Singleton labels (Nashville),  as well as his own label.  - See more at: http://alabamamusicoffice.com/recording-studios#sthash.1foerW1O.dpuf

Don Mosley

Don Mosley was born in Columbus, Mississippi on June 30, 1945. He grew up on a small farm. Living in the country was great but there were plenty of boring times with nothing to do. He entertained himself for hours on end playing a harmonica with melodies that he 'made up'. Little did he know at the time this would benefit him greatly in his adult life.

At the age of 15 he applied for and got a part time job as a DJ/announcer at a local radio station, WACR, in Columbus, Mississippi. Although he was just a sophomore in high school, within a short period of time he was signing the station on a 6 AM, leaving for school at 8 AM. Through an accredited course called Distributive Education, he could leave school at 2 PM everyday, return to the radio station and sign the station off, usually around 6 PM.

Around the same time, he and four other friends formed a band called 'Pre-Dawn 5' of which he was the lead singer. They played at area high schools and colleges, but no night clubs because they were all too young. Eventually that changed and they branched out to nightclubs along the Gulf Coast, including Gus Stevens and the Vapors Lounge in Biloxi, Mississippi. While in Biloxi, they appeared on the national TV show, 'Where The Action Is'. On the same bill were Paul Revere and the Raiders, The Knickerbockers, and Gary Lewis and the Playboys. It was in Biloxi that he met his future wife, Betty. Being in a band allowed for a lot of travel and eventually the group headed west and ended up in Los Angeles where they played at Club Hullabaloo, which hosted yet another national TV show. The band got a long term gig at a restaurant/night club out in the San Fernando Valley. As with most guys, a major change of direction often involves a female. Don was thinking of settling down and marrying that girl from Mississippi. At the same time, the band's bass player had been hired by Johnny Rivers and the band eventually dissolved. Don headed back south, married Betty, and settled back into radio as a sensible solution to supporting a family. He worked at WKIZ in Key West, Florida from there to Alabama where he worked at WTQX in Selma, WHHY in Montgomery, and at WSGN 'Good Guy' in Birmingham working the afternoon drive shift. It was while at WHHY in Montgomery that he wrote, recorded, and produced his first 'jingle' in the radio station studio. The talent that was developed during those early days of 'made up' melodies on the harmonica was now beginning to pay off. The capabilities of recording music in a radio station were soon exhausted and he began booking sessions at Boutwell Studios in Birmingham. After moving to Birmingham, he and Ed Boutwell of Boutwell Studio formed a production company with the mainpurpose of producing jingles.

In 1974 Don bought Sound of Birmingham Recording Studio which he presently owns and manages. Over the years he has written and produced over 500 jingles, many of them national. In advertising, he has won over 100 Addy Awards and 2 Clios Awards.

Don has worked with or recorded the following Birmingham Record Collectors Inductees: Shelley Stewart, Eddie Kendrick, Henry Lovoy, Country Boy Eddie Burns, Jerry 'Boogie' McCain, Roscoe Robinson, Larry Parker, Doug Layton, John Ed Willoughby, Three On A String, Tommy Charles, Les Hollifield, Bunky Anderson, and Dan Penn. Other well known celebrities or artists he has worked with are President George H. Bush, Nell Carter, Rick Dees, Roy Orbison, Kenny Rogers, Fredrick Knight, The Temptations, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Peggy Scott and Jo Jo Benson, Sam Dees, Beth Nielsen Chapman, Candi Staton, Ruben Studdard, David Camon, Rozetta Johnson, David Sea, Lady Smith Black Manbozzo (from South Africa), Dorothy Love Coates, Jake Hess, The Blackwood Brothers, Bobby Horton, Big Sam Frazier, Brother Al and Pashion Lewis, Vince Dooley, Gene Bartow, and Charles Barkley.

Don and Betty, that girl from Mississippi, live in Vestavia Hills, Alabama. They have 2 sons and 4 grandsons.

Henry 'Gip' Gipson inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Henry 'Gip' Gipson inducted into Birmingham Record Collectors Hall of Fame


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Birmingham, Alabama to attend the Birmingham Record Collectors Record Show & Hall of Fame Induction Ceremonies. Henry 'Gip' Gipson was recognized as having one of the world's most popular backyard parties/juke joint that has been going on since the '50's.

Henry 'Gip' Gipson - 2013 Hall of Fame Bio

HENRY 'GIP' GIPSON

Bessemer resident Henry Gipson is known worldwide for his Saturday night backyard parties. These parties are a coming together of all peoples who share Mr. Gipson's love of music, particularly blues, gospel, and country. Since 1952, this gathering spot for those who love to play the blues - the likes of Kenny Brown, Shar-Baby, Clay Swafford, Chris Simmons, Johnnie Reese and Kent Duchaine, to name just a few - and those who love to listen, has been known simply as "Gip's Place".

Mr. Gipson was born on a plantation in Perry County, Alabama, southwest of Selma, according to the family Bible. Raised there and, later, in Bessemer, his love of music began in church and graduated to small juke joints. He began singing the blues, playing harmonica, piano, and then guitar. Because of his love for his church and God, he spent four years in Huntsville at Bible college. To this day, he will quote you scripture any time he thinks you need it.

In the early 1950s he began sharing music with the kids in his neighborhood and teaching them to play guitar. These small lessons evolved into the famed parties of today, where crowds of hundreds from all over the map gather in Gip's backyard to sing the blues. It's hard to describe the feelings you have after spending an evening at Gip's Place, but it's an experience you won't soon forget. The party always begins with a prayer and, by the time it ends, you all feel like family.

Every Saturday evening, Mr. Gipson himself plays and sings for the eager crowd. He then turns the microphone over to some other artist who stopped by for the honor of playing at Gip's Place - folks like Earl "Gator" Williams, Mojo Child, Johnny No, Willie King, Debbie Bond, Randy Buel and Bobby Rush. Other bands you might have caught some Saturday night at Gip's include Microwave Dave and the Nukes, Elliott and the Untouchables, Robin Bibi from London, Todd Simpson, and Big Al and the Heavyweights. During the party, Gip meets and greets with his visitors, shaking hands and posing for pictures while the music greats play on his stage. Over the years, party after party, Henry Gipson is now one of the most photographed people in the world, having had his picture taken tens of thousands of times.

In recognition for his contribution to keeping the Blues alive, and his tireless efforts throughout the Bessemer community and the state of Alabama, The Birmingham Record Collectors are pleased to honor Henry "Gip" Gipson by electing him to the 2013 class of the Birmingham Record Collectors Music Hall of Fame.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Song Co-Writing by Jerry W. Henry


In all genres of music a majority of the hits are collaborations. In the Country genre, in fact, ALL of the top songs are collaborations! If you look at the current issue of Billboard magazine and check out the radio play list charts closely, you will quickly notice that the vast majority of the songs you see charted there were co-written by two, three or more writers.

There are the obvious benefits to co-writing for songwriters. The most obvious is being able to bounce ideas off of each other. This process allows you to say dumb things to each other until the profound ones come out. Collaborating brings you new ideas and cannot only bring in other ideas; it can also inspire you to new ideas that you would not otherwise have found on your own. A co-writer benefits from another point of view or another’s way of saying the same thing differently than ourselves.

Co-writing can help you write more songs and stronger songs if both writers are focused on the same goals. Writing with more experienced songwriters teaches you quickly the do's and don'ts that exist in the world of pro songwriting. Collaborating builds a songwriters catalog faster. You share the frustration and celebrate the victories with a co-writer.

One of the major benefits, but less obvious, is the shared connections to get the song heard, pitched, recorded and released. The royalties are divided, but the marketing efforts are multiplied. This really comes into play if you are fortunate enough to write with already established successful songwriters who have publishing deals or just lots more connections in the business than you do. Also the cost of demoing your song can be half what it would be if you wrote it alone.

Creative energy is a powerful force and sometimes it is magnified when two or more writers are batting ideas around and reacting to each other. You will grow together and find opportunities are multiplied by your co-writing relationship as you share your resources. Never hesitate to discuss writer share percentages with a co-writer. But remember, anything too formal too early can kill the fun and desire to continue working together. Find someone that is trustworthy because you trust him/her with your ideas and those are worth money.

Chances are you’re stronger in one area (lyrics or music) than another; a collaborator can add strength where you’re weak. When you write with other songwriters you can open up incredible paths for your music that you would never explore alone. To be a good co-writer, you must be willing to be completely open. You then can explore any subject without inhibitions. That is the only way you can write honestly with another person.

Published in October 2013 issue of The Leaf

Monday, October 7, 2013

Birmingham Record Collectors Show & Hall of Fame Inductions


Birmingham Record Collectors Show & Hall of Fame Inductions


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Birmingham, Alabama to attend the Birmingham Record Collectors Show & Hall of Fame Inductions. Those inducted this day was Henry 'Gip' Gipson, Don Mosley, Donnie Fritts, Spooner Oldham and Dan Penn.

Don Mosley - local 60's - 70's DJ and owner of Sound Of Birmingham Recording Studio.

Henry 'Gip' Gipson - Bluesman and owner of Gip's Place in Bessemer.

Donnie Fritts - Muscle Shoals singer/songwriter. Kris Kristofferson's keyboardist for 25+ years.

Dan Penn - Muscle Shoals singer/songwriter. Produced the Box Tops & Sweet Inspirations.

Spooner Oldham - Muscle Shoals singer/songwriter. On much of Aretha Franklin's early LP's. With Neil Young for over 20 years. Member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. He and Dan Penn wrote songs such as 'I'm Your Puppet', 'Cry Like A Baby', and 'Sweet Inspiration".

The Birmingham Record Collectors is a gathering of various people who in 1984 decided to establish a special record club to satisfy their individual tastes. As the name implies, the club found its roots in Birmingham, Alabama, USA and includes international membership. BRC members were exposed to every type of music (and dance) imaginable. The club turns no prospective member away. To be a member a person need only possess the three club precepts which are devotion to:

1. "The collection of music".

2. "The preservation of music".

3. "Lasting friendships".

BRC currently has over 400 members. Chicago, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Houston, New Orleans, and Atlanta are home to BRC members. We also have members in Great Britian, Holland, Japan, Austrailia, Germany, and France. We are the largest organization of its type in America.

Members of BRC meet the second Sunday of every month for the main purpose of sharing and discussing music. When possible, we have special guests who either have been or are still active in the music industry in some form or fashion. This includes the recording artists themselves as well as record producers and radio personalities. Some programs are presented by our own members in an area of music they are particularly interested in and who have become experts on the subject. We discuss local talents and labels, record discographies, genres of music, and much more. We choose two meetings a year and designate them as mini-record shows where we have members bring records and CD's to sell/swap/buy and we invite fifty non-members to join us.

To expand our activities, BRC club members travel together occasionally to musical points of interest such as New Orleans, Nashville, Memphis, and Clear Lake, Iowa - and also go on record hunts in other cities and to concerts and shows.

In 1985 the inaugural BRC Record Collectors Show was launched, and continues to grow in size and popularity every year. In addition to our own members as merchants, dealers from well over a dozen states and some from as far away as Great Britain and Germany look forward to our annual event where they buy, sell and deal in records, CDs, memorabilia, tee shirts and many items connected to recorded music. Buyers from France, Japan, and Holland come to the show every year.

In 2001, our own "Hall of Fame" was established and remains an attraction during the final hours of our annual Record Collectors Show. During our Hall of Fame program, we honor people in the music industry from around our area. We want to show our appreciation to these artists and personalities for the music, fun, and memories they gave us. This is our way of letting them know they will always be remembered. Some BRC Hall of Fame inductees include such celebrities as Eddie Kendricks of the Temptations, Harmonica Blues Man Jerry "Boogie" McCain, singer Roscoe Robinson, recording artist and local performer Henry Lovoy, songwriter and recording artist Larry Parker, and bands such as The Tikis, The Premiers, The Distortions and many more.

A monthly newsletter is published to give members updates on current events of the club, provide special articles regarding the music business, and post reminders about upcoming meetings. Over 250 BRC members look forward to the newsletter sent by either email or postal delivery.

The club is a non-profit organization giving donations to area charities such as Toys for Tots, Meals on Wheels, Kid One, and the Jimmie Hale Mission.

Again, The Birmingham Record Collectors was formed to "Preserve the Music" in whatever form the particular member appreciates the most - whether that be vinyl, compact disc, or the rapidly evolving high tech modes. In the end, the byproduct is "Lasting Friendships!"

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Secret Stages presents JazzMine Garfield


Secret Stages presents JazzMine Garfield


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Secret Stages VIP Lounge in the Historic Loft District of downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a Jazz performance by JazzMine Garfield.

JazzMine 24, born in Birmingham, Alabama the guitarist, lyricist, and singer has made the stage her home for many years. Owning the mic in many talent shows, show casings, and collaborations it is evident that her passion bleeds heavily through entertainment. Although she's equally skilled as a vocalist and guitarist, Garfield is a natural innovator, fusing her brand of acoustic jazz with hip hop, soul, and even a few well-appointed electronic samples. Through her experimentation, she has developed a modern jazz sound that's updated into the electronic age while remaining soulful in meaning and melody.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Secret Stages presents Pen Pals


Secret Stages presents Pen Pals


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Matthew's Bar & Grill in the Historic Loft District of downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a hip-hop performance by the Pen Pals for Secret Stages.

The Pen Pals are a hip-hop group from Tuscaloosa, AL comprised of two emcee-poets. With a borderline religious view of hip-hop, they aim to maintain a certain quality with their soulful approach to writing rhymes. The two emcees spent nearly two years getting familiar with each other's styles in freestyle sessions before taking on the title "Pen Pals". Fathom and sLanguage came together and blended many different inspirations. They started writing as a group in the summer of 2012 and quickly formed a distinct writing style that they like to call "punch-line poetry", in which they take concepts of substantial and/or poetic nature, and deliver them in a way that will immediately be attention grabbing. This writing led to the release of their first project, a 5 song self titled EP, in November of 2012. Each track offered something different yet true to hip-hop, and that attracted a wide variety of listeners both locally and online. Soon after the EP's release, the two started performing together, winning crowds over with an infectious energy and stage presence. Through this the Pen Pals have helped shape and revitalize true hip-hop music in the 205 area.
A bit of The Weekend Kids from Jackson, Mississippi on the end of this video.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Secret Stages presents The Ninjaz


Secret Stages presents The Ninjaz


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Matthew's Bar & Grille in the Historic Loft District of downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a hip-hop performance by The Ninjaz.

Hailing from the Dirty South's Heart of Dixie, Birmingham, Alabama, The Ninjaz are the embodiment of style and substance set to varying sounds. Forming in 2010 during high school, 3 friends with similar tastes decided to form a musical group to express their passion for music, fashion, and art. They quickly gravitated toward a classic hip-hop sound with a modern twist developing what would take the city by storm as The Ninja-Nation Collective.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Secret Stages presents Belle Adair


Secret Stages presents Belle Adair


Alabama Music Office.com goes to Secret Stages' Miller Lite Stage in the Historic Loft District of downtown Birmingham, Alabama to attend a performance by Belle Adair.

Belle Adair's first record, The Brave and the Blue, will shipwreck your intellect. One minute the kettle's ringing, or the light is changing red to green, but you're gone. You're swept away to this heart-wandering tiny universe with pedal steel swells and trumpet gulls, love lamented and comprehended. Life, examined and exalted.

The record is the wreck. The island. The raft. You? You're the drifter. Listen.

"Be Brave" opens the record with two-and-a-half minutes of improvised ethereal ambience, a balm of an introduction to the motifs and instrumentation to come. The track is a reflection of Belle Adair songwriter and front man Matt Green's admiration of ambient artists like Tim Hecker and Stars of the Lid. The instrumental elements of "Be Brave" undercurrent the first half of the record as the sound evolves, straddling folk and pop, Americana, indie-rock. The band draws from a wide palette of sounds: pedal steel, Rhodes, violin, brass, synthesizers, and guitar, with the acoustic often playing lead. And Green's soulful vocals, hinting at British whispers and Southern lilts, steady yet brimming with the emotion of each song's crux. Green, like you, wanders—between The Brave and the Blue—searching for significance in what we can withstand to lose and dare to hope. Much of The Brave and the Blue was imagined in the early mornings of a time of revival for Green, who returned home to Muscle Shoals, Ala., after his Birmingham apartment was destroyed in a fire, the last loss in a series of disappearances: work, love, happiness, reason.

The synced timbres and tones, key and elements, images and ideas of one grand musical atmosphere create the world of Side A. You'll wander through the cinematic poetry of burning streets beneath a wide black sky past unwelcome guests and lost loves, but don't distress. The music will carry you through. "Sister" is a dream, embodying the tonal modes of Belle Adair, shifting from sweet acoustics to a crescendo of jangly keys and electric guitar, before fizzing into beautiful distortion. "The Unwelcome Guest" is a lonely slow dance in a Southern bar. Dawn on an autumn beach and the "Clouds Never Break." You're alone, for now, drifter.

Side B begins with the rosy pop of "Golden Days," your future unfurling. The organ and horn-drenched "Easy Way Out" is the highway, so rich in sound and ringing with such verisimilitude, your heart will ache and sing, drifter. The candid "Comes a Time" brings you face to face with the possibility of new love. And finally, "The Search" is a grassy hilltop at the destination of one journey, the launch of another. Green sings, "All we seek is what we are given." Welcome home.

Green's predilection for sundry styles of songwriting is ever present in the roaming of Side B—a nod to the recording fashions of bands like The Byrds but also a manifestation of place. Green's access to talented musicians is unlimited in the Shoals. And although the songs begin with Green, they end in the deftly handled instruments of nearly a dozen musicians who gathered at Nutthouse Recording Studio in the Shoals. Of particular note is the backing band's attention to each song's needs, always appropriate, never intruding—Daniel Stoddard's pedal steel, Chris James' bass, and Patrick McDonald's drums. For Green, the studio is a fortress, a sanctuary, in which his intentions become tangible; the outside world barricaded from the one he's creating. Keyboardist and Green's childhood friend Ben Tanner engineered the record, drawing on the mystical intuition and trust of friendship, completing Green's arrival home.

Belle Adair casts away the trepidation of traveling roads once rocky. How fitting for a band named after a sunken ship in Steinbeck's Winter of Our Discontent. Put on The Brave and the Blue. And the kettle, too. Drift away. Forage the once-forgotten memories of your past self, no longer deserted.

By KA Webb