Monday, May 31, 2010

Stillwater - Runnin' Free (1998)

After having been off the radar for close to 20 years, Stillwater surprisingly reemerged with this great come-back album in 1998. "Runnin' Free" sounds like they never left and no time had past. Well, almost. The album kicks off with "The Big Payback", an original Causey/Walker song, which had previously been recorded by Molly Hatchet for their "Lightning Strikes Twice" album. And it's that distinctive Stillwater sound alright. What we get from there is a slightly updated version of the Stillwater we know from their two Capricorn releases from the 70's. And it's really cool to hear old Southern Rockers delivering the goods after so many years of absence. Though it doesn't grab me as much as the old albums did, I thoroughly enjoy listening to this album. I guess the main difference is that it all sounds somewhat poppier and there seems to be less room for extended soloing/improvisation. But that's the curse of the 80's music, which left its mark on most Southern Rock released after the 70's. It still rocks. And it still has enough Soul to have you believing this is the real deal. Enough diversity here to make repeat playing worth your while. Ready to rock?

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Chris Anderson - Old Friend (1995)

Chris Anderson is a name that could ring a bell with fans of The Outlaws. Chris played with The Outlaws from 1986–1989 and has rejoined in 2005. In between he also played with Blackhawk. This is quite different fare, though. Recorded in 1995, this was pretty much the thing to do at the time: record an album full of uneventful, contemporary Blues Rock. Much in the vein of the Gary Moore blues albums, this is slick, rather bland Blues Rock. Les Dudek made an album like that too, very forgettable. But there are some gems hidden here, which will make you pleased having taken the trouble getting it. And if you like (Southern) Blues Rock, this could knock you off your feet. I guess. My favorite track is "Jake's Song", which makes it pretty clear we're on Southern Rock turf here. And I basically enjoy the second half of this album very much. Thanks to Templar33 for bringing this to my (and your) attention. I lost some e-mails, so I'm not sure that's what he calls himself. Anyway, good stuff. Trust me.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Richard Torrance - Bit Torrance (2010)

I'm a fan of Richard Torrance and I used to have some of his album posted here as vinyl rips. Then Steve sent me the "Living Today" rip and pointed out the fact that these days Richard was selling all of his albums on his homepage. Thank you Steve and you are right. Hence I pulled them all, instead offering you a sampler which features songs from all of his 70's releases. But wait, check out this video first:

Yes, Richard is still making music and performing. Again, check out his website. The music is not strictly Southern Rock (and he's really from North Dakota), but it has all the ingredients to cook up a nice Funky Southern-tinged musical stew. Dig in, I say. Tracks on this sampler come from the albums:
"Eureka" (1974)
"Belle Of The Ball" (1975)
"Living Today" (1976, European release only?)
"Bareback" (1977)
"Live At The Boarding House" (1977)
"Double Take" (1978)
"Anything's Possible" (1978)
Since then he's released a couple more CD's, all available at
Richard's a great singer and musician and he sure deserves your attention. So, why don't you try a bit Torrance?!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Rusty Wier - Don't It Make You Wanna Dance? (1975)

"Don't It Make You Wanna Dance?" is Rusty Wier's second album and, since it features his most covered track "Don't It Make You Wanna Dance?", likely to be his best known. Some artists you just can't go wrong with, Rusty Wier being one for sure. Rusty's music is the best among Outlaw Country/Austin Country, and this album sure nuff confirms that statement with ease. Besides the title-track, here we also find the beautiful "Sally Mae". And this album knows plenty Southern Rock moments as well. Lovely album by a lovely artists (alas no longer with us). Broaden your horizon and get this. Sing me..

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Live Bait - EP (1995?)

Live Bait is a band connected to Ned and features Norman Reim. This is a four song EP, which sounds like it was demo sold at live shows. It was provided to us all by Slidewell, and this is the information he had on this project:
Unfortunately Live Bait never came within a country mile of a recording contract. These 4 songs were self-produced and were basically a souvenir for the lucky few attending their rare live performances in the wilds of central New Jersey. The band consisted of:
Norman Reim: vocals, guitar
Kenny Heller: lead guitar
Max Crandall: drums
Anita Crandall: bass
Musically it's easygoing Americana really. Some definite Southern flavor, but any Outlaw Country fan would be just as pleased. Sometimes it reminded me a lot of Billy Joe Shaver. Very enjoyable. These day Ned are back as a unit again. Having released another CD as well, you can find out about that on their website. Let me hook you up with some Live Bait...

Friday, May 07, 2010

Ian Moore - Live From Austin (1994)

"Live From Austin" was Ian Moore's second release. And a hot live one at that. Running at around 35 minutes and just 5 songs, this is still very much worth your attention. Bluesy Southern Rock played with verve and passionate vocals to boot. If you enjoyed Ian Moore's first album, you'll find this is where he really gets the chance to show off. And do that with flying colors. Great tasty live record, this one. Recommended for sure. Satisfied...

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Whiskey River - Whiskey River (1978)

This is the first album released by Whiskey River. I posted their second release a while back with the promise to post this. And I was getting asked about it too. Well, here it is. Another fine contribution by Luc (who's been one of my main providers). Thanks man. As for the music, it's another batch of Southern Country Rock. Not always as strong as the second album, this slice of vinyl breathes enthusiasm and will keep you up and up all night. About half the songs are originals, the other half covers. Nice version of Waylon's "Rainy Day Woman". And lots of fiddlin' about.. Southern Rock with the emphasis on Country Pickin'.