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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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‘
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).
“ 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.“
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.
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.
Blue Cactus are the North Carolina duo of Steph Stewart and Mario Arnez. We go behind the scenes to talk about this sophomore LP ‘Stranger Again’ which was released May 2021 on Sleepy Cat Records.
The new record is a departure from their previous album ‘Blue Cactus‘(2017) and the sound that was mostly influenced by country-western music. Standout tracks from this album are ‘I Never Knew Heartache (Then I Knew You)‘ and ‘Not Alone (Til You Come Home)’ If these aren’t country songs and then I don’t know what is. The new album ‘Stranger Again‘ musical direction is a mix of the lyrics, different energy and creative ideas and the amalgamation of their life experiences before they recorded this sophomore album. Blue Cactus have created their own genre of music with this album and it is ‘Space Country‘.
On the podcast we explore Steph and Mario’s separate journeys into the world of music and how Blue Cactus was started as a new project after playing together on a string band. It started as a way of really focusing in on country music and they had a new batch of the material that they wanted exploring different kinds of song writing. After an artist’s retreat in 2017 the duo then began writing songs separately and then began the collaborative process of bringing these songs to life.
Standout tracks from the new album are ‘Stranger Again‘ and ‘Rebel‘. For the future Blue Cactus are looking forward to playing live gigs again and bringing their unique space country sound to fans not only in the United States but across Europe.
Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Blue Cactus. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.
Coleman Williams has country-western music bubbling away in his DNA while also bringing the energy and excitement of punk rock sensibilities to his music, his lyrics and ethos of his strange band.
“Music to me is like a way to communicate to anyone and anything even if you can’t understand each other. Music is the Universal language”.
CloudwatcherUno and Coleman talk about how every living thing responds to the frequency of music and if you just search on the Internet you’ll see cows loving music, the subtleties and complexities of the English language and literature. And how the written word is his true love and how he combines that with music. Using his music to express his views on love to other people.
Doc Watson’s music can transport Coleman through the power of musical time travel to his childhood running around barefoot and fishing with his friends. Music especially live music whether it be in a basement or a concert it is one of the best things that the young Coleman enjoyed and it is that joy that he tries to bring to his music. About a month ago Coleman got to experience some live music at a La Honda Records event with the Local Honeys, Vincent Neil Emerson and Riddy Arman.
Coleman’s music almost always has two versions this stripped down version and the band version and this is how he sees himself as a country artist who is willing to experiment and branch out. An artist is an artist and it is unfair to pigeonhole artists into categories dreamt up by marketing teams of big monolithic music labels. Artists shouldn’t have to apologise for trying to branch out into rock or metal or punk when audiences only see them as country music artists.
Coleman knows that he will have made it as an artist when he gets to play with artists that he loves, respects and idolises and then can collaborate with those singers and songwriters to produce music that is unique thrilling and experimental that delights audiences around the world. Being respected by his peers and the music scene now he will know that he has made it in this world of music.
Coleman loves his father and deeply respects his grandfather and especially his great-grandfather and wants to be an artist in his own right who is related to all the amazing musicians in his family but is known for the music he wants to produce and showcase to the world. If you haven’t realised by now Coleman’s great-grandfather is Hank Williams, his grandfather is Hank Williams Jr and his father is Hank III.
Coleman’s song ‘Son of Sin‘ It is his calling card to the music world that he is his own artist and not just a relation to one of the greatest country western legacies that still resonate today in 2021. Coleman’s forthcoming album and music will be a country record with elements of other music genre’s.
Coleman talks about how Hank Williams is still not a member of the Opry. Hank Williams has been synonymous with the country music institution. Williams remains a former member of the Opry. It’s a mistake that has continued to be made for the last 60 years. There are many organisations that pay reverence to the name of this classic country-western artist but show a lack of respect by their lack of action or monetisation of the Williams name.
More and more in this age, tradition and respect mean nothing and the all mighty dollar and disneyfication of what was supposed to be music in all it’s rich and varied history has been left behind. Coleman talks about this and how music is no longer the main reason for tourists to come to Nashville. Born and bred in the city, Coleman has seen with his own eyes all the changes generally for the worse that has taken over the city that he loves.
Coleman’s mission as he sees it is to help country and western music grow through the influences of other genres so that it doesn’t wither and die and country music needs to grow and change. Artists like Coleman are leading a renaissance in what it means to be a country and western artist in 2021.
Coleman is looking forward to performing with his strange band in the summer and autumn and perform in front of fans scratch that actual fans instead of just online shows. Long may Coleman and his band continue to make music that excites and brings joy to fans across the world.
Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Coleman Williams. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.
Pearl Charles is quite simply a magician who has mastered the dark arts of creating cosmic country music with her album ‘Magic Mirror‘ with stunning songs such as ‘Only For Tonight‘, ‘Imposter‘ and ‘What I Need‘ she has pioneered new territory in combining the worlds of Americana, slide guitar country and western, soft rock disco, piano ballads, pedal steel harpsichord infused Fleetwood Mac, Abba, Toni Brown and Emmylou Harris.
Pearl Charles surrounds herself with cool doodads which give her inspiration and positivity inside her home in the desert. Dancing Queen was the jumping off point for Pearl’s ‘Only For Tonight‘ Andy is an outlier for the rest of the album as the songs that follow on the album don’t continue the Abba-esque music that’s captured by Pearl Charles on this track. We talk about astral projection alternate realities and what it means to be truly you in the universe that is constantly changing.
While Pearl and her band were touring of the ‘Sleepless Dreamer‘ record she was recording and writing the songs for ‘Magic Mirror‘. ‘Sweet Sunshine Wine‘ was released prior to ‘Magic Mirror‘ coming out as a single. The title of the album came to Pearl in a dream and reflected the magic that is Disney’s Snow White. We talk about how the magic mirror showcases the best potential vision of you but also delivers who you are right now at this point of time.
The album is fully biographical and captures Pearl’s hopes dreams and aspirations about relationships from breakup to sharing one’s life with a partner. Growing up Pearl was influenced by her father’s music collection which introduced her to Frank Zappa and Bob Dylan.
As a DJ Pearl likes to mix it up when she is on the dancefloor from disco to country and everything in between. Songs that Pearl has written to change especially if they are continuously on the set list and so they become almost like a alternate brand-new version from the one that was born on the keys of a piano.
Taking the pandemic in stride Pearl has been able to focus on performing with her band in preparation for when she gets to tour in England and Scotland in February 2022. Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Pearl Charles. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.
Cristina Vane’s new album ‘Nowhere Sounds Lovely’, took two years for it to come out before fans could listen to her country and western music sound. In this podcast with CloudwatcherUno we get to talk about her experience of touring while writing the songs for the album, moving from Los Angeles to Nashville and then getting Rodney Dawson and Cactus Moser to mix and produce this amazing album.
Cristine is very much influenced by traditional country music brings with it a modern sensibility That captures the experience in all its ups and downs of being a travelling musician and not having a home or a homeland and that uncertainty brings its own friction and is captured not only in the songs of this album but the mood of the album itself.
While studying at Princeton it didn’t really seem like a possibility for Christina to pursue a music but then after graduating she gave her whole heart and soul to becoming a singer songwriter and to take her songs across the United States. Pete Steinberg became a mentor of sorts for the young Cristina Vane and he inspired her from giving guitar this lessons, encouragement and support as he could see the potential within another human being to produce passionate music that connects with other souls.
For Cristina to sing the words that she is written down on paper and that she is kept for his songs and produce music for fans that is her favourite thing to have achieved as an artist. Songs can be very traditional verse chorus verse chorus bridge but what’s most important for her is to convey a message something I can connect with other people to lift their spirits. For the future Christina plans to tour over the summer and then to get back into the studio to begin recording album number two.
Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Cristina Vane. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict or wherever you listen to your podcasts.
“Jesus, Red Wine and Patsy Cline, Victoria Bailey’s new album is getting 5 star reviews absolutely everywhere. There’s just not a bad song on it.” Bob Harris, Radio 2 – The Country Show with Bob Harris.
Victoria Bailey’s album ‘Jesus, Red Wine & Patsy Cline’ combines the three things that she feels most defines her right now in the middle of a pandemic. Her love for her faith, a good glass of wine and classic country music from her heroes Patsy Cline, Emmylou Harris, Loretta Lynn, and Dolly Parton. The album was produced by Jeremy Long (released in 2020 via Rock Ridge Music). It’s a timeless classic honky tonk album that announces Victoria as the newest generation of artists to carry on the legacy of those legends.
In this podcast CloudwatcherUno sits down with With Victoria Bailey and we talk about putting out new music, releasing a full album in the pandemic and concentrating on live performances. Two new songs will be released in the coming months, one is an original ‘Queen of the Rodeo’ (there’s also a video that was filmed for the song as well as meetingfilming the real life Rodeo Queen of California Morgan Laughlin) and another is a Randy Newman cover ‘Rider in The Rain‘.
LA is not known for country music but it was the birthplace of the Bakersfield Sound that included such artists as Merle Haggard, Dwight Yoakum, Buck Owens and Victoria Bailey has captured that sound in her music and her album. Although Victoria Bailey didn’t grow up with country music, her father’s influence came with rock ‘n’ roll and her mother played folk records but fell in love with country music when she visited Nashville for the first time.
We talk about inspiration for the ‘Ramblin’ Man‘, ‘Skid Row‘, why outlaws are so charming, why Springsteen is really the boss and whether teenage Victoria Bailey thinks adult Victoria Bailey is really cool or not? Why her voice is her first instrument followed closely by her guitar, looking at touring in England and playing live music.
Click below to hear the podcast from CloudwatcherUno featuring Victoria Bailey. Also streaming on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Addict and wherever you listen to your podcasts.