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Author Archives: Rick Allen

Matt Szlachetka

Waits For A Storm To Find
 
Matt-Szlachetka

Northstar Session songwriter, lead singer, and guitarist Matt Szlachetka is more introspective here than with the Session but his considerable strengths are in full flower – especially his ability to craft a song organically into something pleasing to the ears. For “Wasting Time” or (more…)

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Burke Long

Silver Queen
 
Burke-Long

This infectious record has the homemade feel of mom’s Sunday dinner. North Carolina boy Burke Long evokes writing models like Rodney Crowell and Gene Clark for the almost California country of “About Love,” which features pedal steel from a very able John Macy. But Long’s (more…)

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Stan Martin

Whiskey Morning
 
Stan-Martin

Stan Martin is a keeper of the traditional country music flame. He’s a Don Rich/Danny Gatton-schooled Telecaster-loving guitar picker, a virtuoso who is not a showoff. And he’s a skilled writer and musician who is unabashedly, unapologetically country. Martin’s original songs have a moving, sometime (more…)

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Joel Selvin

Here Comes the Night: The Dark Soul of Bert Berns and the Dirty Business of Rhythm & Blues
 
Joel-Selvin

Every garage band owes Bert Berns. Without him 1960s radio would have been almost as dull as it is today. Berns shepherded the early careers of Van Morrison and Neil Diamond, and his production of the Isley Brother’s hit on his (as “Bert Russell”) and Phil (more…)

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Johnny A.

Driven
 
Johnny-A

As the liner notes state, Johnny A.’s musical mantra is “melody is king.” And oh, how he proves it here – even when he dusts off his EBow for a side trip into psychedelia on “Out Of Nowhere.” That melodic perspective is extremely important for an (more…)

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Justin Currie

Lower Reaches
 
Justin-Currie

The creative team of bassist Justin Currie and guitarist Iain Harvie led the band Del Amitri through several personnel changes over the years. The group was similar to the tough, passionate bantam British bands like Steve Marriott’s Small Faces, the Hollies, and other working-class ensembles (more…)

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Jim and Jesse and the Virginia Boys

Radio Shows
 
Jim-and-Jesse

Jim and Jesse’s music, with signature tunes like “The Flame Of Love” and Paradise,” never crossed over to pop success. But from their first broadcast on a Virginia radio station in 1947 through their many years with the Grand Ole Opry starting in 1964 (more…)

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Craig Maki with Keith Cady

Detroit Country Music: Mountaineers, Cowboys, and Rockabillies
 
Detroit-Country-Music

Craig Maki and Keith Cady provide a well-researched look at an overlooked part of Motor City’s rich musical history. They offer new or little-known information about the fertile Detroit scene that influenced people such as Del Shannon and Commander Cody and His Lost Planet (more…)

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Paul Asbell

From Adamant to Atchafalaya
 
Paul-Asbell

On Chicago’s south side, Paul Asbell recorded and played with Howlin’ Wolf, Lightning Hopkins, John Lee Hooker, and other legendary greats, including holding down the rhythm guitar chair for the studio side of Muddy Waters Fathers and Sons LP. Moving east, he expanded his scope (more…)

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Port City Prophets

Mule
 
Port-City-Prophets

The Prophets are a blues-rock bar band that brings around a lot of people to music they might not otherwise have heard. The PCPs will remind you of both Grand Funk and ZZ Top. With the opening cut “Close Your Eyes,” they’ll also bring (more…)

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