Written by Dave Hamilton and Clarence Paul, and recorded by Marvin Gaye in 1964, "Purple Snowflakes" isn't known as a holiday classic, even though it really should be. St. Louis band Rough Shop updates the dreamy, jazzy, psychedelic sound with a cover that's both faithful and fully inspired.
Home town musician Devon Allman played blues, rock and soul guitar for a sold-out crowd at the Gramophone on Saturday.
I recently had the honor of joining the rhythm & blues-rock band Vintage Trouble for a run of 13 shows in September and October. Instead of co-billing with another group, the members preferred to have me, the Soul Selector, open the concerts with a potent, all-vinyl mix of blues and soul while chatting up the audience. A member of the band even personally introduced me at every stop.
If you're in the market for fresh music in a roots vein, here are seven new releases your ears are just begging for you to check out. There are some familiar artists, some definitely less so, touching on just about every aspect of American music -- and beyond.
San Francisco-based songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Jesse Cafiero started Split Screens as a solo endeavor, enlisting just enough musicians to flesh out his songs. On the new track "Home," however, he stretches out, with piano and horns driving the full-band R&B groove.
Tailor made for indian summer, "September Fields" stretches out with an easy-going soul groove -- dig the horns, dig the B3, dig the responsive harmonies -- and Frazey Ford's expressive, trilling voice. Like a warm fall day, you wish it would last forever.
"Can we get some soul music up in here?!" Lee Fields shouted at the top of his lungs.
Under-the-radar alert: Here are seven recent releases featuring American music -- meaning blues, soul, rock 'n' roll, jazz, swing and everything in between. Seven fine artists with albums deserving of greater attention. Please take a few minutes to check them out.