Tag Archives: Country Music

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S6 EP 6 ~ Elles Bailey

CloudwatcherUno sits down with Elles Bailey to talk about ‘Cheats and Liars’, from Elles new album ‘Shining in the Half Light‘ due in 2022, her musical career so far from touring and promoting her album ‘Road I Call Home‘ which is where I first saw Elles live in concert. Elles recently won The UK Blues Awards — where she was awarded UK Blues Artist of the Year 2021 for the second year running.

Medicine Man‘ by Elles Bailey

Medicine Man‘ is one of my favourite songs of Elles but the story behind it acts now as a warning sign about the dark side of the music business. Having invested all her money in travelling to Los Angeles for four meetings with record labels with an American producer it turned out that he was a con artist.

The situation became the inspiration for another song ‘Wild Wild West

‘You guaranteed I’d feel a blazing fire
Sold me a dream so I showed you every scar
Planted a seed and I let you take me higher
Now here I am on Sunset Boulevard’

Elles managed to use that negative experience and turn it into some of her most popular songs.

Wildfire‘ by Elles Bailey

We talk about the story for the fan favourite song ‘Howlin Wolf‘ which Elles wrote in 2013. Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand in tribute to the bluesy delta rock and roll music that was the soundtrack for backpack adventures with her father. The love for this song is so much that there is a facebook page from her fans called the Wolfpack.

Howlin Wolf‘ by Elles Bailey

Recently Elles played at the Empress Ballroom at The British Country Music Festival 2021 in Blackpool. The festival promotes the best home-grown, contemporary country and Americana artists from across the UK. This was the highlight of the fledgling return of live music to the British Isles. The experience of reconnecting with a live audience was amazing and showed Elles how much she had missed playing live.

Cheats and Liars‘ by Elles Bailey

Elles never set out to be a country artist or a blues artist what she is and wants to be first and foremost is a musician who makes killer music. ‘Cheats and Liars’ when it first came out enjoyed a world exclusive on ‘The Blues Show with Cerys Matthews’, on BBC Radio Two and was added to Planet Rock’s A List and was the most played track on Planet Rock in September 2021. The success of this single has meant the second single ‘Sunset City‘ got pushed back to make way for this huge first single.

Elles is the very first artist to be signed to peermusic (the largest independent music publisher in the world) via Under The Apple Tree (UTAT) (the label co-founded by music and broadcasting legend ‘Whispering’ Bob Harris), spearheading a brand-new, music publishing, joint venture.

Out of all of these achievements one of the closest to Elles heart has been the birth of her baby which has brought her closer to her family and with their support Elles will be able to go back to what she loves doing most in the world which is going back on tour in October and November 2021.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Elles Bailey. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S6 Ep 5 ~ The Ransom Brothers

Sean and Sal talk about how they came up with the name of ‘The Ransom Brothers‘ . They changed the name from Good Springs to a name inspired from the Jimmy Stewart’s character Ransom Stoddard in the movie The Man Who Shot Liberty Vallance. Their new song ‘Talk Of The Town‘ is a very honest roots rock kinda sounding song and needs to be played in your kitchen at the loudest volume you can!

Talk of the Town‘ by The Ransom Brothers.

Sean is the main songwriter of the band with input from the rest of the musicians for various verses and riffs. For a change fiddle and peddle steel were added to bring an extra dimension to their sound. Opening up for the ‘The South Austin Moonlighters‘ led to an opportunity to meet producer Chris Beale and then come up with a game plan of choosing 4 songs from 20 tracks and release these to radio stations.

Harmoni Kelly did the bass tracks on the records and the band are grateful for what she brought to the mix. Sean and Sal talk about growing up in the North Austin and the country lifestyle of barn dancing, bull riding and the allure of cowboy movies and country music. They explain that ‘Texas Country’ is a stripped down country music rather than the Nashville country pop music. Whiskey Myers, Turnpike Troubadours and Jason Isbell are definite influences on the band.

Sean and Sal have very different approaches to writing song, adding harmonies and making sure they don’t use country music clichés. Their next release will be coming out in November 2021 followed by live recordings of songs recorded at 512 Studios in North Austin. Then booking shows in central Texas with a view to more live performances out of the Lonestar State.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring The Ransom Brothers. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S6 Ep 4 ~ Tony Hannah

Tony Hannah hails from Northern California via Knoxville Tennessee where she was influenced by rich Appalachian music. You can hear the echoes of that sound within her EP ‘Premonitions‘ . We talk about what it means to be an independent artist and how best to show the world what you as an artist stand for.

One thing that has changed for independent artists is the fan base as they become more aware of what is out there beyond just the mainstream Nashville sound.

Premonitions‘ by Tony Hannah

Two of the best songs from the EP are ‘Setting Sun‘ which is based on memories of California sunsets and the sound of Linda Ronstadt’s ‘Blue Bayou‘ with the unmistakable melody of the marimba . Another favourite is ‘Tacos and Goodwill Clothes‘ The EP was recorded during the lockdown. Four of the songs on the album were written before the pandemic and two of the songs were born during this dystopia these were ‘Small Money‘ and ‘Paradise‘.

Gillian Welch and Emmylou Harris were musical staples growing up as this what Tony’s mother listened to in the flower shop she had. On Tony’s playlist is Dolly Parton, Alison Krause and Emily Nenni, Charlie Marie, Sierra Ferrell and Bonnie Raitt.

Going forward Tony wants to explore more of a soul country sound and also to release a Christmas single. That would be the best Christmas present!

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Tony Hannah. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S6 Ep 3 ~ Jeremy Pinnell

Jeremy Pinnell is a honky tonk musician of the highest order. Having released ‘OH/KY‘ in 2015 and then ‘Ties of Blood and Affection‘ in 2017, Jeremy brings out his third album ‘Goodbye LA‘ on October 1st 2021 from Sofaburn Records.

Killer tracks from that first album are ‘Sleep Song‘ and ‘Rodeo‘ from ‘OH/KY‘ which were already around for 15 years. Alternative County/Folk music was where Jeremy started but Country Music is where he is headed. While in Dayton, Kentucky Sofaburn Records and Jeremy came together to make sweet sweet music. Jeremy lived a wild kind of life back in the day and managed to record these experiences for this album. Jeremy is a connoisseur of hooks, he tries to add those big or small into everything he writes.

Between his first and second album Jeremy met a girl, had a son, got a steady job and got married and all this gratitude and contentment in his life is reflected in ‘Ties of Blood and Affection‘.

‘Ballad of 1982’ by Jeremy Pinnell

Zackary ‘EZ’ Nelson absolutely nailed it with the artwork for ‘Goodbye LA‘. Jeremy and the band worked hard for the last two years during the pandemic and can’t wait to show all his hard work so that people can hear the album. It’s an album that can make some fans uncomfortable as it progresses Jeremy’s sound in new directions.

The new album was recorded right under the wire in 2020. The time during the pandemic was used to getting the album mastered up to perfection. Jonathan Tyler as a producer was the right decision for Jeremy as he would make the whole experience of recording the songs and the album super exciting.

Big Ol Good‘ by Jeremy Pinnell

One of the most extraordinary songs on the new album is ‘Rosalie‘. It’s a story of a bar girl and a bar guy having a whole lotta fun. The album reflects the life of a troubadour whose living his life one song at a time.

Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee are many of the states that Jeremy and the band have been paying at post pandemic. Going foward Jeremy and the boys will be travelling across the states to showcase one helluva album.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Jeremy Pinnell. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S6 Ep 1 ~ Katie Jo

Katie Jo kicks off Season 6 of the CloudwatcherUno podcast.

Katie Jo is a phenomenal singer songwriter from Wichita via Los Angeles who follows in the footsteps of her heroes Patsy Cline, Loretta Lyne and Tammy Wynette. Katie brings her own life stories and experiences to her music and her sound.

On the podcast we talk about the joys and highs of caffeine, tasting the joy of expresso in Italy. Writing songs and releasing an album in the pandemic was not something the Katie Jo envisioned that these themes that are woven into her album ‘Pawn Shop Queen’ of infidelity heartache and life-threatening health conditions are ones that true country music lovers will recognise as stables of the genre.

‘I Don’t Know Where Your Heart Is’ by Katie Jo

Country music rewards and celebrates the redemption arc for example the outlaw music movement which focuses on those who have gone to jail or committed a crime. Katie Jo wanted to show that women could also be badasses and have the strength and fortitude of character to pull them selves out of every situation that they find themselves in.

We also talk about the mystical experience of performing live on stage and the intricacies being vertically challenged while performing in front of a live audience.

The album therefore is a celebration of all things that are best about the human spirit and its will to carry on regardless of what life throws at it. Killer tracks on the album are ‘Pawn Shop Queen’, ‘Bad Religion’ and ‘Are You Coming Home Tonight? I for one thoroughly enjoyed the album and look forward to hearing more from this tremendous musician.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Katie Jo. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

Behind The Song with Dan Whitaker

Dan Whitakers new album ‘One More Story Told‘ is out on Friday 13th August 2021 and is a collection of new old songs as in all songs rediscovered or reimagined for a new audience. One such song is ‘Please Tell My Baby‘ a song that was written almost 20 years ago. Then Dan was in a band called ‘Great Plain Gypsies‘ and was the principal songwriter and singer for the band at the time. It’s a song about two lovers who part ways without the ease and convenience of today’s modern technology. For one reason or another the lovers can’t be together and this song explores what happens when two souls can’t be together.

Behind The Song‘ is available on Friday 13th August 2021 to watch on @youtube and to listen on @applepodcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Dan Whitaker. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

Behind The Song with Sean Devine

From the CloudwatcherUno™ series BEHIND THE SONG is ONE artist, ONE story, ONE song. Expanding the concept of what a podcast can deliver.

In this inaugural first episode we have Sean Devine speak about his inspiration for ‘Here For It All’ and perform this song live from his home in Montana. Sean explains how at one of the lowest points in his life he met another soul who saw beyond the pain and sorrow and was able to see another soul that she wanted to spend her life with.

Getting married on the 4th of July was their ‘Independence Day’ independence away from all the negativity of the world and be able to just focus on the happiness that they brought to each other. Hearing the back story to this song makes it connect even more with those who have been listening to this stunning song.

‘Behind The Song’ is available on Friday 6th August 2021 to watch on @youtube and to listen on @applepodcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Sean Divine. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S5 Ep 9 ~ Ryan Kinder

Ryan Kinder is a one of a kind superstar.  We get to talk about Ryan’s experiences of the English weather especially the rain way back when time had some meaning in 2018. We chat about ‘Tiger King‘, the joys of Netflix, then trying to figure out how to feel each others energy when song writing on Zoom.  How do you connect with another artist when your not even in the room? Well one way is to send over a track with guitar licks before meeting each other so everyone involved has some idea of what’s going on inside your head.

As the pandemic went on with no end insight Ryan in his wisdom quite rightly decided he wouldn’t release an album right in the middle of it all. So he decided to make a collaboration album with other artists called ‘Ontology‘ and instead of other artists sing his songs Ryan would tailor it to each specific artist and their strengths. The first collaboration was with an artist called ‘Sykamore‘ and it was called ‘Doing Fine‘, the second to be released was with Brandi Clark and Jerry Douglas. The third release was with Robert Randolph an incredible slide guitar player. The idea is that this album is a living breathing album showcasing the amazing talents of Ryan and the guest artists. That’s not the only album that will be released in 2021.

Room to Dream‘ is the  debut album coming out from Ryan on Friday 30th July 2021. The title of the album was inspired by Bruce Springsteen documentary where Springsteen said that he needed “Space to Dream”, Ryan loved that idea and added Room to the mix and that’s how he came up with the album title. The album concept was about Ryan tackling different genres and being able to have the room to explore them all from beginning to end on the album. It follows a very linear path even though it travels all over the world of country music.

Room To Dream‘ by Ryan Kinder

One of the outstanding tracks of the album is ‘Blame‘ written on a writing retreat with Luke Sheets and Fred Wilhelm. In 25 minutes or less Ryan was inspired by a lick which came to him as he was winding down the writing for an evening and then Luke, Fred and Ryan turned the song into an anthem that connects with people as the song was tested on the road in front of fans.

My all time favourite song of Ryan’s is ‘Still Believe In Crazy Love‘ as Ryan says in that podcast you can’t turn off the hope that you’ll still find the love you need. It’s shows the trail’s and tribulations of what the heart goes through in trying to connect another soul. It’s like Ryan is the stenographer to people’s lives, a magician who weaves his magic with words and music which cast a spell on all those who listen.

A stunningly beautiful song from the new album is ‘Something‘ it’s a powerful song that expresses the dynamic of that feeling you get when that special someone enters the room. Maybe something will happen, could happen with this new soul who’s entered our lives.

For the future Ryan will be concentrating on album number two and touring all over the States. Hopefully sometime soon we’ll get to see him play in England. Outside of music, Ryan is currently training for the IRONMAN world championships in Kona, Hawai this summer. He’s going to complete this 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride, and 26.2 mile run in honour of his late friend who passed away from cancer and always wanted to compete in the race.

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Ryan Kinder. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

Artist Showcase with Michelle Billingsley

Michigan born Michelle Billingsley has lived many lives and dreamed of becoming amongst other things an actor, an organic chemist, a veterinarian, a ‘mime’ and now a fully fledged songstress. We talk about how Michelle started in the music business with first moving to Chicago and performing with the Chicago Cabaret Professionals who put on cabaret shows in piano bars. After doing that for a couple of years, Michelle decided to try something new by learning how to play guitar and then drifting into folk music with the band ‘Eleven Dollar Supper‘ which lead to country music.

Once In A While‘ by Michelle Billingsley

Michelle saw a sign…..a sign above a bus stop which said ‘We teach Guitar!’

Matt Brown offered to produce Michelle’s album and with his help, the studio was booked, all the other musicians who played on the song were drafted in and made the whole experience of recording an album so easy. Right now Michelle is recording her second album by herself and has come to realise how much work Matt had put in with the first album. The pandemic didn’t stop Michelle from releasing her album ‘Not The Marrying Kind‘ in June 2020. By that time she had been living with those songs for what seemed like an eternity and wanted them to come out into the world!

Not The Marrying Kind‘ is the first line of the first song and provides a unique insight into Michelle’s musical life. One of the album’s highlights is the song ‘Drink Til I’m Pretty‘ and is full of these characters which weaves an intricate dark story that makes you feel for these characters. The whole album is a magnificent testament to Michelle’s song writing, lyrics and voice.

Drink Til I’m Pretty‘ by Michelle Billingsley

For the future Michelle will be booking shows in Chicago and beyond in the fall. For now click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Michelle Billingsley. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.

CloudwatcherUno Podcast S5 Ep 8 ~ Dallas Burrow

Dallas Burrow’s voice will take you away to a country that only exists in his heart and his music. It’s called Texas, the Lone Star State that is so mythical in the world of music it seems to fill the listener with dreams of how they too could live the life of an adventurer without a care in this world.

Born and raised in Texas, his first experiences of the country music world were from his father (a blood brother of Townes Van Zandt and friend of Guy Clark). Dallas Burrow continued the song writing tradition with his first album like 2019’s ‘Southern Wind‘, and now his sophomore self titled album ‘Dallas Burrow

Country Girl‘ by Dallas Burrow

To record the album, Dallas went old school in the production of the album by recording to two-inch analogue tape by producer Bruce Robison. He met Bruce while going on tour with the living legend that is Charley Crockett. The end result is the nearest you’ll get to hearing Dallas and his band play live. Dallas recorded the album with bassist Sterling Finlay (Todd Snider), guitarist Larry Chaney (Steve Earle), pianist Kullen Fox (Charley Crockett, Paul Cauthen), violinist Bryan Duckworth (Robert Earle Keen), steel guitarist and dobro player Dan Johnson (Hank III), slide guitarist Chad Pope (Dale Watson), pedal steel guitarist Cody Angel (Jason Boland), drummer Josh Blue (Bruce Robison’s band), and guitarist Chris Kues (Burrow’s own touring lineup).

Dallas Burrow, Texan through and through.

I’ve realized that being a family man is perhaps life’s greatest adventure so far. I’m still writing about the adventures I’ve had… I’m just embracing a new kind of adventure.

American Dream‘ by Dallas Burrow

Stand out tracks are ‘American Dream‘ and ‘Country Girl‘ with the epic ‘Outlaw Highway‘. It’s an album that brings fire to the soul, showcases how much travelling around the world as influenced this Texan adventurer and presents a man reborn and this is the soundtrack to his new life.

Dallas Burrow‘ out on Friday 23rd July 2021

Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Dallas Burrow. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.