Jan 23, 2015

RDBC 3rd Anniversary!

Today marks the 3rd anniversary of the RDBC launch and what an incredible journey it's been. What started as a hobby during some down time has grown beyond my wildest expectations. I have made so many great friends, so many great opportunities and had more fun than one man should be allowed. I am thankful for all of the people that have followed along over the years. I am grateful to be a voice for the music that I believe in so passionately. But most of all I am honored that for some reason people still let me be a voice. Thanks to all of you and here is to many more years of RDBC.

Jan 22, 2015

Calamity Janes- Roots & Wings EP Review

Girls in country music don't sell. Well, excuse my language here, but that's just bullshit. Good music should always sell whether it's from a male, a female or a 3 legged set of Siamese twins. Some of my favorite artists in the Texas and Oklahoma music scene today are women. Courtney Patton, Sunny Sweeney and Kelley Mickwee have all put out great music lately and there is a large number of newer female acts rising up as well.

This is where you will find The Texas trio of sisters The Calamity Janes. Actual real life sister's Arwyn Benson, Alyssa Yancey and Courtney Childs-Mock have been making their way up the ladder in the north Texas scene pretty quickly over the last year or so. They were finalists in the 2014 Ranch Factor contest held by 95.9FM The Ranch in Ft.Worth and were just named one of the top 5 bands to watch for in 2015 by Kelly Dearmore of The Dallas Observer.

If you need further proof, allow me to introduce you to the Janes' new EP Roots & Wings. A 5 song collection of tunes that just may be one of the most auto-biographical efforts I have ever put ears on in a while. The honky tonkin' somewhat brazen lead off track "Middle Sister" with it's tale of revenge for the woman scorned by a bad man sets a pace that keeps rolling through the entirety of a really good EP. It's followed perfectly by the ode to the home state "Gone to Texas" and the first single off of the EP "One of Those Nights" which is already steadily gaining momentum and plays on Texas radio.

The back end of the album grabs your attention with an incredible remake of Oklahoma's Bo Phillips' song "Riverbed" that has some of the best harmonizing found on the album. Lastly, rounding out the album is what may be my favorite track, the funky tune "Gypsy." Another seemingly all to honest tale of the broken hearted that again features the kind harmonies only blood ties can bind.

In a short 5 song EP, I feel that the Janes have manged to put on display for us everything they've got. And it is good. Roots & Wings manages to run the spectrum of both song and emotion with a slow song here, a swinging honky tonker there, and some pretty cool other stuff in between. Look for the album when it drops February 3rd.

For more on The Calamity Janes go here http://www.thecalamityjanes.com/

Jan 20, 2015


Jackson Tillman is a band that not only caught my attention late last year but also only became a band last year. That's right. When these guys were entered into the artist showdown they had only been together as a band for about 3 months.

Now they did all have various backgrounds in music and with other bands but some unexpected circumstances brought them all together and every day since has been a whirlwind for the boys from southwest Oklahoma. We asked the guys to fill us in on what brought them together and asked all of the other usual questions like what made you want to get into music, biggest influences, how you came together as a band and their goals? Here is what the guys had to say.

Jackson Tillman: Shawn Gomez (guitar- harmony vocals), Jamie Chandler (Bass) and Bryan Chandler (Drums) are all family and we grew up playing music together in church around the age of 11 and started sneaking in to honky tonks around 16. Our biggest influences in music range from Keith Whitley, George Strait to our Dads who we watched play music growing up. We formed a band called Texoma with fiddle player Chris Whitten (who now plays with us again) and went on a national tour at the age of 21. Texoma disbanded in 2001 and we went our separate ways musically but were always together as family. In 2013 we all found ourselves living in Edmond Oklahoma and we formed the band Redneck Brown & The Freshwater Donkeys. We (Shawn, Jamie & Bryan) were the Freshwater Donkey side of things..lol. We had some regional success with a few chart singles and one song (When I Think About Texas) stayed on the Texas Music Charts for about 8 months.

Late in 2014 though, Redneck Brown decided to leave out for a solo career and the guys teamed up with fellow southwest Oklahoma native Jeremy Studdard (vocals) and Brent Kreuger (lead guitar) to form the new band. Studdard had been in the scene and playing music for a while himself when the guys got together as Jackson Tillman. A name paying homage to the 2 southwest Oklahoma counties were the band members grew up.

Studdard: I started singing when I was 5, my dad bought me an Elvis Presley box set for Christmas and I never stopped until I learned every song. I went to Nashville for a few years and came home when I found out I had a baby on the way. I feel that success has already been achieved on so many levels for me. I have been able to reach thousands of people with my music and have opened up for some big national acts. With Jackson Tillman the sky is the limit. We all mesh so well when it comes to writing and practice. I can't wait to see what's in store for 2015.

The guys went into the studio late last year and pumped out a pretty good EP in order to get something out there with their name on it. They hit the ground running as Jackson Tillman and aren't standing around waiting to catch their breath. Plans are in the making for the release of the first radio single and a full length debut by the end of 2015.

For more on the band go here: http://jacksontillman.com/index/

Jan 14, 2015

Cody Canada & The Departed - HippieLovePunk

About 2 years ago at a show in Wichita Falls, TX I had a chance to chat for a few minutes with Cody. ADVENTUS hadn't been out long and it was still to be seen whether fans would fully embrace the new sound and the new band. What I told Cody that night was simply this; I saw him more comfortable and having more fun on a stage than I had seen in years. The songs that he was writing and the things he was doing now, seemed to be things he had wanted to do for years but wasn't able to make happen with CCR. He thanked me, and he told me it was nice to see that people got it.

The thing with music from Cody Canada, is that it always sounds like it's from Cody Canada. The sound that so many fans had come to love over the years with CCR was so easily identified as Cody. But with most of the songs on HippieLovePunk being mostly written by Cody, the tunes have not simply picked up where CCR left us, they have catapulted us into a new realm entirely. If there are still fans out there holding on to hope of a reunion or holding back on The Departed, this album serves as proof enough that it's time to let shit go and get ready to rock.

HippieLovePunk is Cody at his best. It has all of the grit and soul of earlier tunes but with a level of maturity and musicianship that was sometimes lacking in the old days. The lead track 'Comin To Me' is a ballsy rock n roll tune in that declares it's time to give Cody his due.

'Misunderstood all these years.
Tried to calm it down but it reappears.
I won't be happy til you're bored to tears.
Running for the bus but it's grinding gears.'

Loud and clear my man.

Other tracks on the album range from the same rocking riffs in songs like 'Revolution' to the simple and almost throwback sound of 'Maker' which is a song that I can easily hear Willie Nelson doing 30 years ago. Every track on this album could be a radio single. As much as the last album was a Cody and Seth album, this new album is a total band effort. Jeremy Plato, Chris Doege, and Steve Littleton are all nearly perfect in their contributions in completing this project.

While it may be early to start saying this will be one of the best albums of the year, I don't know anyone who has heard it that would argue against it. It has already been on rotation in my playlist for months and I don't see that ending any time soon. Add it to yours and do the same.