Not What I Bargained For by The Livesays

Not What I Bargained For is my third review and fifth album for Billy Livesay, best known for his work with E Street Band legend Clarence Clemons as his Guitarist & Vocalist, with his group The Livesays to be released on September 1, 2021.  This twelve track release features Billy Livesay on guitar and lead vocals, Jorge Laplume on bass and vocals, Victor “Cuqui” Berrios on organ and vocals, Tim Murphy on piano and vocals and Howard Goldberg on drums which showcases their growth as performers and songwriters with such great tracks as Two Sides, One More Chance, Drunkard’s Lament, Hold Me, Better Angels and so much more.  I was impressed with this album from start to finish with a brilliant performance, amazing songwriting talent and a superb recording.  It is always a pleasure to get the opportunity  to listen to this band.  This is a band, that if they ever perform live in my area, I would go see them in a heartbeat.  You can pick up your copy of this album on CD and digital download from Amazon, Spotify, Itunes and many other music retailers on September 1st.  To learn more about this amazing band, go to their official website https://thelivesaysmusic.com/

Fanfare For The Uncommon Man: The Official Keith Emerson Tribute Concert by Various Artists

Fanfare For The Uncommon Man: The Official Keith Emerson Tribute Concert  is a CD/DVD compilation honoring the work of Keith Emerson released March 19, 2021 on the Cherry Red Records label.  The Official Keith Emerson Tribute Concert will be available as a four-disc set featuring DVD and two CDs capturing the entire two-and-a-half-hour event and a disc of Bonus interviews The show which was performed on May 28, 2016 featured a roster of rockers including Steve Lukather and Steve Porcaro from Toto, Eddie Jobson, Jordan Rudess, Brian Auger, Jeff “Skunk” Baxter, Vinnie Colaiuta, Marc Bonilla, Gregg Bissonnette, CJ Vanston, Troy Luccketta, Rachel Flowers, Terje Mikkelsen, Philippe Saisse, Travis Davis, Ed Roth, Mike Wallace, Mick Mahan, Karma Auger, Rick Livingstone, Jonathan Sindelman, Joe Travers, Kae Matsumoto, Aaron Emerson, Dan Lutz, and Michael Fitzpatrick. and a host of others.  The event also featured Emerson’s son Aaron Emerson, and members of his solo band and his Three Fates Project Group.  Discs one and two features nineteen tracks from the career-spanning celebration of Keith’s work, including music from ELP, The Nice, Three Fates Project and the Keith Emerson Band with such great tracks as Karn Evil Nine, The Barbarian, Ride, Lucky Man, Nutrocker,  Tarkus and so much more. The second two parts are DVD of the live concert with 23 tracks plus many bonus features, interviews, tribute speeches, behind the scene footage and so much more.  I was quite impressed with all the work that it took to put together this compilation as well as an amazing performance and superb recording and video.  If you are fan of the work of Keith Emerson like I am, you will want to add the compilation to your music library which is available from Amazon, Cherry Red Records, and many other music retailers.

Under Your Spell by Tito Jackson

I have been a fan of Michael Jackson, Jermaine Jackson and the Jackson Five for many years.  Now Gulf Coast Records and Hillside Global announce the signing of pop, soul and blues legend Tito Jackson and will release the singer/guitarist’s label debut album, Under Your Spell, on August 6. 2021. Tito Jackson is supported on the new disc by an array of superlative special guests, including George Benson, Joe Bonamassa, Marlon Jackson, Kenny Neal, Bobby Rush and Stevie Wonder, who all add their special talents to the proceedings.   This eleven track album features the single Love One Another as well as other superb tracks as All In The Family Blues, Rock Me Baby, Dyin’ Over Here, Big Leg Woman, Wheels Keep Turning and so much more.  Tito gave a brilliant blues performance on this album with amazing musicianship, creative songwriting talents and a brilliant recording.  This is an album that I put in my car to listen to over and over again.  This release will be available August 6th on CD and digital download from Amazon, Target, Apple Music and many other music retailers.  You can also pre-order the album on CD, LP and Limited Edition 12″ Cream Vinyl as well. Go to http://www.titojackson.com where you can learn more about this amazing artist, his music and much more.

Streets Of Gold by Electric Six

Streets of Gold is a high-octane collection of cover songs hand-picked by from Detroit’s fun-loving alternative garage rock collective, Electric Six! itself and showcases the band’s eclectic and excellent musical tastes highlighted by Alice Cooper, INXS, Roky Erikson, James Ingram, The Pixies, Love and many more scheduled for release on July 30, 2021 on the Cleopatra Records label.  This band features Dick Valentine on lead vocals, Johnny Nashinal on lead guitar and backing vocals, Tait Nucleus on keyboards, Da Ve on rhythm guitar, Rob Lower on bass and Todd Glass on drums.  This thirteen track album features such great covers as Little Lies (Fleetwood Mac), Slippery People (Talking Heads), No More Mr. Nice Guy (Alice Cooper), Strutter (Kiss), Yah Mo B There (James Ingram & Michael McDonald) and much more.  This release showcases an amazing performance, great arrangements and a superb job of recording and production.   It would be interesting to hear their earlier work to see their growth as performers.  I recommend you take a listen to this album which is available on colored Vinyl, CD, and digital download from Amazon, Cleopatra Records, Apple Music and many more music retailers.  To learn more about this band, their music and upcoming live performances near you, go to their official website https://electricsix.com/

The Sum Of All Things by Tantric

Tantric, an American rock band from Louisville, Kentucky has regrouped for the band’s eighth release and their first new album in more than three years, The Sum of All Things scheduled for release on July 23, 2021 via Cleopatra Records.  This amazing band consists of the vocal powerhouse Hugh Ferreira, guitarist Sebastian LeBar, bassist Jaron Gulino, and drummer Jason Hartless with additional instrumentation by Katie Jacoby on violin and Chuck Alkazian on keyboards.   This thirteen track album features the new single Living Here Without You as well as such great tracks as Alone, Can’t Find This, Ten Years, the title track The Sum Of All Things , Breakdown and so much more.  I was impressed with this album, loving every track from start to finish with an amazing performance, excellent songwriting and musicianship and a superb recording.  After listening to this album, I want badly to hear their earlier work.  This brilliant album is available on Vinyl (which I want to get a copy of), CD and digital download from Amazon, Cleopatra Records, Apple Music and many other music retailers.

Great Zeppelin II: A Tribute To Led Zeppelin by Jack Russell’s Great White

JACK RUSSELL’S GREAT WHITE, the band led by former GREAT WHITE singer Jack Russell, will release “Great Zeppelin II: A Tribute To Led Zeppelin” on August 13 via Deadline Music, a subsidiary of Cleopatra Records, Inc. This long-awaited sequel to the 1998 album that became one of GREAT WHITE‘s best-selling, most loved albums features Jack Russell on vocals, of course, who remains in top form and he’s ably backed by stellar guitarists Robby Lachner and Michael Olivieri along with bassist Dan McNay and drummer Dicki Fliszar giving new life to Led Zepplin’s classic hits such as Whole Lot Of Love, Good Times Bad Times, Kasmir, Moby Dick, Stairway To Heaven, Heartbreaker, Livin’ Lovin’ Maid and so much more.  This fourteen track album features an amazing performance, powerful vocals, superb musicianship and a brilliant recording.  Listening to this album, if you listen with an open mind and don’t expect it to sound just like Led Zeppelin, you will enjoy this album as much as I do. This great album will be available on CD in a deluxe digipak, digital download and on colored vinyl in a gorgeous gatefold jacket (which I hope I am lucky and get my own copy on vinyl) from Amazon, Cleopatra Records, Bandcamp and many other music outlets.

Focus50 :Live In Rio/Completely Focused by Focus

To celebrate 50 years of ground-breaking progressive rock, Focus are delighted to announce their “Focus 50” 3CD/Blu-Ray package released on April 30, 2021 through In Focus Records distributed by Cherry Red Records. At the heart of the “Focus 50” package are 2CDs and Blu-Ray of “Focus Live In Rio,” a concert recorded in Nitteroi, Rio de Janeiro, in 2017. Focus 50” also includes a bonus CD “Completely Focused” with the classic Focus tracks numbered 1 through 12 re-recorded by the current Focus line-up of Thijs van Leer (keyboard, flute and vocals), Pierre van der Linden (drums), Menno Gootjes (guitar) and Udo Pannekeet (bass).  This thirty six track compilation features such tracks as House Of The King, Eruption, Sylvia, Harem Scarem, Hocus Pocus and much more in which they showcase their amazing vocals and strong musicianship as well as creative songwriting talent and a superb recording.  If you are a fan of progressive rock, you will want to take a listen to this amazing release which is available from Amazon, Discogs, and many other music retailers.

Destinations 2 by Darryl Way

Destinations 2 is the new studio album by Darryl Way,  the co-founder of Curved Air, a trailblazing rock violinist, and composer and features ten new rock instrumentals, with a variety of influences and sound effects enriching the style and delivery of the pieces.  I reviewed the first Destinations last year which I enjoyed and now he is back with his second Destinations album which continues those journeys, and like that earlier recording, Darryl Way performs at least as much on guitar as on violin.  This twelve track album released

through Spirit Of Unicorn Records on May 28, 2021 features  Darryl Way on violin, guitar, keyboards and vocals, Pete Skinner on drums, Richard Mead on bass and guest vocals by Juliet Way on such great songs as Alhambra Knights, Mother Earth, Ocean Blues, Hungarian Rhapsody, Across the River Wide (The Immigrant Song) and much more.  I was quite moved by the performance on this album, as well his great songwriting talent and superb recording.  After hearing this album, you will want to hear this first Destinations album.  This album is available on CD and digital download through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Cherry Red Records and many other music retailers.  To find out more about this artist and his music, go to his official website https://www.darrylway.com/

Appalachia: American Stories by Grant Maloy Smith

This morning I want to present my latest review for singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Grant Maloy Smith with his roots music series in the album called Appalachia: American Stories released June 25, 2021.  This will be my third review for this amazing artist, my last one called Dustbowl: American Stories done back in May of 2017. Joining Grant Maloy Smith (acoustic guitar/bass/banjo/dulcimer/mandolin) is Grammy winners Jeff Taylor (accordion) and Rob Ickes (dobro), Grammy-nominated Trey Hensley (acoustic guitar), the Grand Ole Opry’s Matt Combs (fiddle), ACM award-winning Mike Johnson (pedal steel), Jelly Roll Johnson (harmonica), Tim Lorsch (cello), Frances Cunningham (mandolin, bouzouki) and Matthew Burgess (drums and percussion).  This twelve track album showcases a nice mixture of County, Bluegrass and Americana with such great tracks as The Coal Comes Up, Down to Hatchabee Road, Gas Station Chicken, I Found Faith, Boone’s Five And Dime, We Got Mountains and so much more.  I totally enjoyed the performance on this album, as well as brilliant songwriting and a superb recording.  It will be interesting to see what this artist comes up with next.  Appalachia: American Stories is available through most digital outlets and CDs and vinyl versions are also available through Suburban Cowboy Records. Each physical copy of the album comes with a 40-page, 11″ x 11″ book of lyrics, credits and stories behind the songs.  To learn more about the artist, his music and his tour schedule, go to his official website https://www.grant-maloy-smith.com/

Year Of Pain by Robert Stoner

Year Of Pain is the debut album by Robert Stoner, a singer-songwriter from Berkeley, California scheduled for release on July 9, 2021. Despite the fact YEAR OF PAIN is his debut release; Robert Stoner is a prolific songwriter who has been writing songs his whole life.  This nine track album showcases his amazing talent as a songwriter and a performer with Ben Bernstein on lead and electric guitar, drums and percussion from Mike Stevens, additional vocals by Robert’s daughter Lily Stoner and vocal and instrumental contributions from singer-songwriter Maya Elise on such tracks as Just A Riverboat, The Principle, Out of Time, Wait Until The Morning, the title track Year Of Pain and much more.  This album was well recorded and produced and I am looking forward to see what is next in his career as a songwriter/performer.  This album will be available on CD and digital download from Amazon, Apple Music, and other retailers.