Artist Review: The Jive Aces – “Diggin’ The Roots Volume 1 & 2” LPs

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

Don’t just go back to your roots – dig them!

We’ve heard a lot of today’s takes on classic songs from many new age contemporary artists, as well as tribute bands and cover artists putting their own spin on yesterday’s hits from many calibers of genres with a fresh additive or two. Some do it well, some fall flat, and then there’s the few and far between gem that comes out swinging with the charms of both yesterday’s and today’s most influential eras wrapped up into one super tight package. That, my friends, is The Jive Aces.

This UK-based band are definitely not a bunch of randies by any means. Renowned worldwide for their high-energy spectacular showmanship, this elite group has garnered an enormous following from a combination of acclaims including their viral video for the track “Bring Me Sunshine” and for also being the first live band to reach the final rounds of “Britain’s Got Talent”. Since then, The Jive Aces have firmly established themselves as the UK’s No.1 Jive & Swing band, and show no indication of slowing down their momentum anytime soon.

So with a résumé like that, you know there has to be something of theirs worth putting on your playlist. And their 2-Volume LPs Diggin’ The Roots are shining examples of their tightly knit signature sound of songs we’ve all come to know and love over many, many years. Boasting into today’s production value while maintaining that old school influential charm, we get a more than solid performance on both records comprised of eclectically professional musicians that absolutely own their roles on every track to deliver a sound that not only resonates with the classic each song became long ago, but with a whole new realm of energy and technique that gets us to appreciate them all over again in a whole new way, in a whole new era.

Diggin’ The Roots is exactly as advertised. They are tracks that have brought on endless inspiration and appreciation among a majority of today’s prominent artists and are the roots to their stories. On The Jive Aces Volume 1 record, RockinRhythm & Blues, we get a tastefully blended album of 13 tracks with many flavorful additives. Classic tunes on Volume 1 include smash hits “Jump, Jive & Wail”, “Feelin’ Happy”, “I Want You To Be My Baby”, and many others of the same caliber. Led by lead vocalist Ian Clarkson, who also takes up roles on trumpet and ukulele, his clean and vibrant voice in the forefront of every song really solidifies the band’s approach. The right rhythm section really paves the way for the rest of the band, and really puts the proper backing behind Clarkson’s effective vocal takes and melody placements. With hot piano leads, an anthemic brass section and funky fiddles added to the mix, this fresh look at some of our favorite Rockin’ Rhythm & Blues tracks will definitely get you up off of your feet and own the dance floor.

On their Volume 2 record, Hot Jazz, we get the same Jive Aces vibe with their tight grasp on 13 more classic tunes that combine equal parts originality and familiarity, just like Volume 1. Staying true to form like the previous chapter of this 2-part release, we get an instrumentally versatile execution of fan favorites from the classic Jazz era that includes “Jeepers Creepers”, “On The Sunny Side Of The Street” and “It’s Been A Long, Long Time“. Both of these records absolutely compliment each other and bring a brand new timeless edge to every perfected measure. The showmanship factors are undeniable and one thing that screams from these releases are the words “INCREDIBLE LIVE SHOW”. Diggin’ The Roots really brings out each member’s musicianship abilities and when put together, collectively bring out a stick dynamite just ready to go off at every event they play. And their devoted fan base and successful career milestones reflect that. But one of the most notable things about The Jive Aces is their authenticity – there is no wacky autotune, no oversaturated production techniques, and absolutely no cheat methods whatsoever being used. This band can produce live exactly what they do in the studio, which is a rare thing in today’s digital age of music.

The Jive Aces are the breath of fresh air you’ve been needing for a long time. They are a standout of their caliber, and once you take a listen to both volumes of Diggin’ The Roots, you’ll see and hear exactly why they are the UK’s number 1 Jive & Swing band.

Connect with The Jive Aces:

•Link to Volume 1: http://jiveaces.com/album/518834/diggin-the-roots-vol-1-rockin-rhythm-blues

•Link to Volume 2: http://jiveaces.com/album/518835/diggin-the-roots-vol-2-hot-jazz

•Official Website: http://www.jiveaces.com

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Artist Review: Jonah Melvon – “RainWater Project” LP

Review by: Justyn W. Brodsky

Some music knows exactly how to touch the soul. With ambient vocal melodies, passionate rhythms and multifaceted male/female hooks, Jonah Melvon delivers up an innovative and soulful R&B album of anthems with that classic sound with brilliant textures of Jazz, Hip Hop and everything in between with every track on his newest LP RainWater Project.

Delving into a spectrum of a glistening R&B signature sound that perfectly resonates from the classics we’ve all come to know and love combined with today’s modern sensibility, RainWater Project is a triumphant album of tracks that really offer up an artist’s true passion in both performance value, as well as the strong messages in the content. This record awakens the entrepreneur spirit within all of us with his song “1099 (Mom And Pops)” from the album. A piano-infused, bluesy laid back tune that really nurtures the Soul from both Jonah‘s vocals, as well as the female feature artist. The song’s bossa-nova and rhythmic tempo really carries the mood of the track with each verse standing its own ground with the narratives and melodies paralleling each other perfectly. Then landing us into a chorus that’ll have you singing this one in your head well after it’s over.

The album also plants the spotlight on areas like gentrification, and an inhuman presidency crafted from his anthemic track “What’s Good for You“. A song that is powerful in its delivery and versatile in its overall edge. This track, with just as much swagger, puts another modern bluesy touch on this finely tuned single that brings out a brilliant execution from all angles. The message is powerful and the Hip Hop-additive makes this track very effective and gives it the perfect touches. It’s a song that really explores the true core of Jonah‘s talent and vocal approach. From songwriting technique to the song’s nostalgic pacing, this song will definitely win you over and will have you exploring the rest of this album more closely.

The biggest standout about RainWater Project is the authenticity and originality. A dynamic blend of tracks that mix the best of yesterday’s R&B approach and today’s innovative production value in all the right places. That, along with the multi-genre additives and several tasty flavors from each track will make this album one of your favorite Soul/R&B records you’ve heard this year so far. It’s an album with staying power, the power to stay with you well after it’s over. It’s also the type of record that will have you diving further into Jonah Melvon‘s catalogue as well as future prospects. RainWater Project is gonna give him a very promising year, and if this review is what lead you to his discovery, you’ll be thanking us later.

Connect with: Jonah Melvon:

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Press Release: Pop/Folk Artist Bryce Hitchcock Releases New Single “Two”

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

Recognized as “an artist to watch”, Bryce Hitchcock’s music is rooted in folk-pop, country blues, and jazz. Fans have heard Bryce as the voice of Deuce in the Final Fantasy Type-0 HD video game and she was recently featured singing and acting on the hit FX show Atlanta.

Bryce‘s new single “Two” is about a girl who isn’t ready to commit 100% of herself to her relationship. She’s afraid to be depended on, and even more afraid of depending on someone else. Bryce‘s strong smokey voice carries the heavy subject matter and shows amazing maturity for such a young girl. Bryce brings back deep lyrical content reminiscent of such legends as James Taylor and Carly Simon but keeps it fresh and new with a young sound and modern production. In an era of over produced, glossy pop music Bryce is keeping it real.

Two” was recorded in Ireland with Stuart Gray at Jealoustown Studios and a music video was filmed in downtown Nashville, TN by Steven C. Knapp of Knapptime Creative LLC. The song may be titled “Two” but Bryce‘s songwriting and voice deserves to be number one. “Two” is currently released on Spotify and all digital music platforms.

Connect with Bryce Hitchcock:

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Album Review: Eddy Mann – “Worship In Spirit And Truth” LP

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

It’s rare nowadays to find an artist that spiritually captivated you in the way Eddy Mann does. With his new album Worship In Spirit And Truth, we delve into a realm of authentic musicianship and inspirational songs that soothe your soul and bring your faith to greater heights.

Before the album released on October 5th, we got a taste of the record with the album’s opening track “Every Little Thing.” A sensually uplifting song that introduces us to one of the many chapters this album takes us through. Eddy‘s vocals are on point and have a vibrant feel with great control. His voice is very multifaceted and he implements very effective melodies into every song, focusing on the key points of his songwriting structures that really put the musicianship factors at the forefront.

One thing you will notice though is Eddy‘s signature sound and overall aura as an artist. Each track offers up a new angle of Eddy‘s ability and between his bluesy guitar swells and ambient vocal style, we get a special treat every time. His lyrical content strongly focuses on the worshipping aspect and really encompasses the light that faith in the Lord can have in those that see and hear Eddy‘s music and the messages that are delivered.

The production value on this album are versatile and never rehash the same ingredients, and aren’t afraid to explore different avenues of mastering a song in its own right. However, the best part about this album is despite hearing a different approach in May of these songs, you can immediately recognize Eddy‘s signature sound and artistic merit, putting his spiritual touch on every track and every melody that is graced within.

This is an album for anyone and everyone that really appreciates a musically spiritual atmosphere, and really puts their faith in the Lord in whole. Eddy Mann has been a continued vital voice for songs of worship, and Worship In Spirit And Truth is another masterpiece added to his legacy as an artist and creator.

Worship In Spirit And Truth is currently available on all digital music retailers and music streaming outlets. You will not regret picking up a copy, and you’ll be glad we recommended it to you.

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Artist Review: Luanne Hunt – “Backroads, Bottles & Blues”

Review by: Justyn Brodsky

If there’s one elite artist that has graced our platform with music that gets better every time, it’s Hall of Fame Country Star Luanne Hunt.

Every release of hers compliments the last, and over time you can’t help but see what an inspiring and thriving catalogue of Country hits she puts out. And she adds to it beautifully with her fresh new EP Backroads, Bottles & Blues, a refreshing and delightfully catchy collection of 7 tracks that will win your heart over, especially if you’re a fan of true country.

From uptempo riffs, piano solos and innovative vocal harmonies with the finest precision one could hear, Luanne‘s natural and angelic voice soothes your soul from start to finish throughout every track. Her opening track “The Rhythm” is the perfect entrance into Luanne‘s signature sound and really gets you to grasp onto her artistic merit and her God’s gift to creating soulful music with heartfelt lyrics. It’s also a great track for those who haven’t heard her yet, and will steal your heart away from the very first verse.

With mid-tempo classic country vibes on tracks like “Broken Branches” and “Old Tobacco Road“, we get to hear another side to Luanne‘s writing style and her versatility as a songwriter shines really bright by making use of great guitar tones and chord progressions. The simplicity of the rhythm section is another great part about Luanne‘s style that allows her to keep her voice at the forefront in all the right places, meanwhile giving every instrument the room to explore different fills, measures and tastefully written solos that make these songs incredibly crafty with top notch musicianship factors.

This EP also includes her hit single “Lightning In A Bottle” from earlier in the year, as well as a new magical country ballad “Love Led Us Here”, a beautifully crafted gem that gets the heart fluttering and the soul glowing. The highlight of every track will always be Luanne‘s voice, one that is irreplaceable and incomparable. But it’s also her classic production value that delivers an old school country flavor with elements of today’s modern sensibilities that makes her truly multifaceted.

She has a positive presence and an amazing story-telling narrative to every song on this EP, and her ability to capture the best melody for each one is what makes Backroads, Bottles & Blues a true country classic record that will be sitting on your shelf of favorites. If you already know Luanne, then you already know you’re in for a treat. If this is your first time discovering her, then you’ll be more than happy that you did. She never ceases to amaze.

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Music Theory: Boss Piano – A Lesson In Cadences

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

It is nearly impossible for any piano player to not hear the word cadence at least once in their life. Before explaining the cadence meaning, I will start with the reference of what a musical phrase is.

As you might already know, it is a musical thought composed with four measures length in most cases, and incomplete also. A cadence is a chord progression composed usually of at least 2 chords that ends a phrase or a part of a piece of music.

The cadence has a really important role in any piece of piano sheet music because it gives a sense of resolution for that rhythm. There are some types of cadences that are authentic, deceptive, half, and plagal. They are divided into two groups: finished cadences and unfinished cadences.

The authentic cadence is the movement from the chord V to I of the key center. It is usually written V-I and is the most common and most frequently used cadence. For an example, when it comes to the C Major scale, try playing from V (G) to I (C) and you will notice by yourself how a great finish sounds, because the authentic cadence is also known as a perfect cadence and is well-known for its most finished contribution.

When it comes to the deceptive cadence, it is good to know that it’s also called the interrupted cadence. The name is very suggestive, as in this case, it ends on an unexpected chord. The music sounds reminiscent of something interrupting the piece. For this one, the most common chord progression is from chord V to chord VI, also written as V-VI. For an example, using the A Major scale, the chords are V which in this case is the key E and VI which is the key F sharp minor. Play it and listen carefully to get a familiarity to this type of cadence, so you will be able to use it in your own piano tabs.

When it comes to unfinished cadences, it is easy to anticipate that the sound will be unfinished. This happens because the unfinished cadences don’t end on chord I. By using an unfinished cadence at the end of a phrase in a piece of piano sheet music, it will give the listener the feeling that there is more to come in the next section and that the piece is not over.

In the group of unfinished cadences there is the half cadence. It is also known as imperfect cadence and it ends on chord V, while it can start on chord I, II or IV. For an example, in the G Major scale, we take the chords I (which is key G) to chord V (which is key D). Listen and you will notice that this is not the end, it’s more like a “wait for the next part” kind of feeling. When it comes to plagal cadence, the progression is from chord IV to chord I, also found written as IV-I.

Cadences are a great way to practice and develop piano techniques, and are also considered part of the little things that form the basis of piano for any player.

If you need material for rehearsal, here is a website where you can get piano sheets for free.

Connect with Boss Piano to get your copies now, and other great tips & information as well:

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Press Release: Cherry-Ilex Sound – “Slow Down A Minute (This Time)” and “Dreaming of a Dream (Remix)” Singles

Article by: Justyn Brodsky

When it comes to soul, sensibility, musicianship and production value, Kevin Bailey Jr. and the Cherry-Ilex Sound music and studio collective never disappoint.

Back to the grind with another brilliant release, Bailey Jr. and his crew have put together the bossa-nova and R&B infused single “Slow Down A Minute (This Time)” with a whole new catchiness from the same caliber of talent.

Reminiscent of the good old Motown Records days, this jazzy and soulful track has enchanting female vocals, great Horn arrangements and a very subtle delivery that is catchy, dynamic and atmospheric. There are many flavors that take place in this song with each verse, and every instrument plays the perfect role behind the vocals.

Delving into the production value, we once again have a very well-crafted tone and mastered mix that really showcase the talent and authenticity without any extra unnecessary noise. The song’s chorus is climactic and enchanting, and puts catchiness into new heights. With a song comprised of several elite musicians behind the production, it’s no wonder that we get something as uplifting and multifaceted as this song.

Bringing us to another track from Cherry-Ilex Sound‘s previous release Rapture Caught Up, we have “Dreaming of a Dream (Remix)” which was written with a lot of Kevin Bailey Jr’s personal artist influences as a cornerstone. Featuring an 80’s rhythmic groove and feel good vibes, this song also encompasses the modern R&B sound we’ve all come to know and love. With amazing lead vocals carried in the forefront, this moving song is one that really entices you to look deeper into the Cherry-Ilex Sound catalogue.

The musical elements are an astonishing mix of yesterday and today’s more influential sensibilities and really brings the old school feeling to new realms. With another chorus that is catchy and captivating in its writing structure, this is another track that brings out the strength of every musician behind the project as well as Bailey Jr’s skills behind the mixing board. It’s the type of song you can hear and see when you let it into your soul, and come back to time and time again to appreciate.

Both “Slow Down A Minute (This Time)” and “Dreaming of a Dream (Remix)” will be available on November 8th, and will undoubtedly be added to your top R&B flavorful favorites of the year.

Connect with Cherry-Ilex Sound:

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