Folk/Country

East of June raises hope in new single "Little Bird"

East of June is paying tribute to adventure with a new single titled “Little Bird” that describes the to-be journey of a young girl searching for her voice, her awaiting identity. Tucked in the rich lead vocal melody of Emily Rath is a story of discovery that is relatable. The warm groove from the bass of Incubus founding member Dirk Lance leads the rhythm that helps also tell the story, with Kyle Mortensen providing the acoustics, it is a win. The group shot the music video for the song on Long Canyon Trail in beautiful Simi Valley, adding just the kind of tranquil mood that the song inspires. Such reflections come from the track’s moment of birth (the first week of quarantine), and so loaded with hope, “Little Bird” merges the past and the future and infuses hope and respect for both; stream “Little Bird” for a story familiar. - René Cobar 

   

Wood and Wire Release "No Matter Where It Goes from Here"

 

Austin’s Wood and Wire have taken great use of the quarantine and provided some much needed relief with their September release No Matter Where It Goes from Here.

Trevor Smith rings the banjo beautifully on the opening track “John” as the harmonies of Tony Kamel and Billy Bright resonate in your chest. It’s a passionate take on “seekers, searchers and drifters” where “livin’ ain’t easy when you don’t have money, but money means nothing when you ain’t livin’ free.” The harmonies really drive the song home with the same passion of a Zac Brown or Chris Stapelton ballad.

“Can’t Keep Up” is a dance around in the morning song, which really brings the group back to an outdoor festival feeling of carefree summers and iced tea on the front porch.

“Pigs” is a serious driving track that brings some grit and also reintroduces the theme of money. The first verse concludes “pigs don’t fly, we’re all gonna die and you can’t take your money to the grave.” Kamel sings about a televangelist looking for donations and critiques “it’s a funny world we’re livin’ in full of lies...”

Peter Rowan guests on the track “Rodie’s Circles” and the band truly shows their speed and accuracy in their craft. It has the pace and organic sound of a David Grisman instrumental.

Money continues to be a faint theme that holds the album together with “Spirit of ‘94.” The soft singing on “Home and the Banjo” revives the summer feeling of a John Denver song on the radio. There’s a skipping vibe on “Peddlewheels” that puts a smile on your face.

Wood and Wire have done an excellent job with an enthusiastic release that takes use of the different forms of popular bluegrass structures that can bring many different emotions into the mind of the listener.

 

-Andrew Blanton

   

Raye Zaragoza calls for unity in new music video for "They Say"

Now residing in Long Beach, California, Raye Zaragoza is spreading her sonic wings and taking flight. The new music video for her latest single “They Say” is a beautiful tribute to folk music’s power of unity that is evermore needed during these divisive times, and that through sharp harmonica leads and a rich vocal delivery is easy to understand. Zaragoza, Indigenous on her father’s side and a first-generation Japanese-American on her mother’s, rejects any type of segregation in music and pushes for an inclusive world via a song that embraces and rejects politics at the same time; the music can exist calmly in all hearts, inspiring reflection. The music video filmed with director Matthew Freiheit in Los Angeles on March 17 (a day after the city’s lockdowns took effect) is a walk through a cityscape bare of bodies but not of souls yearning for a better tomorrow. Stream the new music video for “They Say” below for something heartwarming and real. - René Cobar, photo by Caleb James

   

Soul Honey Records "Heard About Your Heresy"

Soul Honey Records released two new single last month, "Sugar Melting in the Rain", and the most recent "Head About Your Heresy". Both singles closely follow the release of the band's debut EP, "The Soul Honey Family Barbeque" back in July.

This is the ever evolving project from Andrew Christopoulos and on "Head About Your Heresy" he is joined by Sean Burke, Tory P-Lopez, and James Ringness.

   

Plague Dad evokes the spirit of New England in dual-single release "Sanitized For Your Protection"

As many of our readers will have noticed, the music of New England and the area itself is home to me. That folk/Americana tradition that fills pubs and café’s from New Haven to Bangor may seem as dim today as the rest of the world, but it will brighten up once again as its acoustic guitar strings will ring, and voices shall chant merrily. I know this because there are artists out there like Maine’s Plague Dad who surface seemingly out of nowhere and carry on that tradition regardless of the times. Through his dual-single release, Sanitized For Your Protection, which includes the tracks “Plague Song” and “Rust,” this artist is embracing a folk spirit vibrant. Strummed strings seem to trot out a rhythm that accompanied by a relaxed vocal melody, evokes nature, humanity, and their complicated relationship—New England’s calling card. This post is my final one for Deli New England, but what a ride it has been and what a pleasure to discover artists from a place so dear to me. See you soon, New England! - René Cobar