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Chaz Marie Makes Up Our Mind

Posted October 2020

 

Chaz Marie Chaz Marie ReducedBoomerocity has a new (to us) artist whom we’re now a fervent fan of Chaz Marie!

Here’s why:

Amazing, multi-faceted voice Check

A natural born Southern girl Check

Has worked with some really
big names in the music biz Check

The wife of an amazing
guitarist & is a good friend
of Boomerocity Check

Chaz is just frickin’ amazing. She’s worked with such huge names as Brian McKnight, Kenny Rogers, Wynonna, Lonestar, Joe Nichols, Steve Azar, JoDee Messina, Richard Marx, The Temptations, Cross Canadian Ragweed, Mark McKinney, Tejas Brothers, Bart Crow Band, Easton Corbin, James Otto, Josh Abbott Band, Rodney Atkins, Jon Christopher Davis, Monte Montgomery, LeAnn Rimes, Michael McDonald, Max T. Barnes, Guy Roche, Shep and Kenny, Will Lee, Dan Wojciehowski, Rob Arthur.

It’s not at all surprising when you hear her sing to find out that Chaz has definitely paid her dues in the business. According to her website, “Her first major label project was Curb Records LeAnn Rimes “Sittin' On Top of the World.” Only a few years later, she and her sister Kessie would release their self- titled debut project on Universal/Republic Records – the Marie Sisters and gain a Billboard Top 40 Country hit with their single “Real Bad Mood.”

Chaz has recently released her first all original EP. Self-titled, it’s full of great work that she has put together with the help of her husband, Mesa artist/guitarist, Quinten Hope. Chaz's brand-new single, ‘Like Last Night’, was written by Chaz and Max T. Barnes and produced by Chaz and her hubby Quinten. It's a toe tapping, extremely energetic, fun song and you can download it by clicking here.

We hope you enjoy our interview with Chaz (on the right side of this page). Please feel free to tell others about it!

Kinky Friedman's Golden Heart For Gold Star Kids

Posted October 2020

Kinky 2019 2 By Issy Drinkall CroppedKinky Friedman. The name itself will always stick in your mind once you’ve heard it. If you’ve even talked to the man behind the name, you’ll never forget him and will always want to hear what he has to say.

The Texas humorist, songwriter, author, and all-around great guy will always regale those around him with stories and his unique insights into the world, country, state, and the human condition. When listening to him, one gets the impression that he’s relaying what he sees in the film reels in his mind. Love won. Love lost. Perceptions about man’s misconceptions. I don’t know for sure but I wonder if he’s a man who is looking back over his life (like we all do or will do) and wonder “What if? Coulda, shoulda, woulda.” I don’t know that for sure. Just a thought.

What I do know is that Kinky and his sister, Marcie, have reopened the family ranch, Echo Hill, to help Gold Star kids. In doing so, they’re Click Above To Listen To Our Interview With Kinky Friedman welcoming volunteers from all over to help in getting the camp ready for an onslaught of these deserving kids so that they can have an enjoyable time at the camp.

When I heard that Kinky and Marcie were doing this noble act, I reached out to Kinky to chat about it. I reached him at the ranch and we had a leisurely, laid-back conversation about the endeavor and life in general.

Please give this audio of the chat a close listen. Once you’re finished listening to it, please come back here and click on the Echo Hill logo located on this page. There, you will be able to learn of the various ways that you can help Kinky and Marcie with their worthy cause.

If this is the first time you're hearing of Kinky and want to learn more about the man, the following is the biography posted on his website, KinkyFriedman.com.

EchoHillLogoClick Above To Learn How You Can Help Kinky Help Gold Star KidsRichard “Kinky” Friedman isn’t your usual troubadour. The iconic song and book man has been roaming the clubs, halls and bookstores of America since the 1970s with his highly unique persona, brilliant, button-pushing songs, a pantheon of entertaining books and his trademark endless cigars. Returning to the music fold full-time in recent years, Friedman has released a trilogy of sorts featuring some of the best recordings and songwriting of his long career. The “Resurrected Trilogy” starts with The Loneliest Man I Ever Met (2015), soon followed by Circus of Life and Resurrection, all terrific collections with each one surpassing the last.

After splashing down in the corporate country world of Nashville in the early 70s, Kinky, who was born in Chicago but reared from an early age in Kerrville, TX, returned to his native Texas after releasing such notable and hilariously-charged songs as “Asshole From El Paso,” “They Ain’t Making Jews Like Jesus Anymore,” “Dear Abbie” and “Ride ‘Em Jewboy.” Kinky’s 1973 debut, Sold American, is a classic of satire and politically-incorrect genius that set him up for a career of irreverence, charm and empathy for the common man and woman. As Kinky dealt with the compromised music industry of past decades, he grew increasingly frustrated by the constant pressures from his record companies to deliver hits, which made the process of recording in the studio far from enjoyable. He stepped away from the music business proper to focus on his burgeoning literary career. A fruitful endeavor it became, successfully spawning nearly twenty deliciously witty detective novels and ten non-fiction books. Based on his own life and several of his closest friends, the characters in Kinky’s mystery novels are as timeless and effervescent as the author himself or one of his cigars.

Kinky never stopped playing music, he just stopped wanting to deal with the business aspects of it. While writing his books, Kinky kept a regular and notorious Monday gig at the infamous Lone Star Café in New York City in the early 80s, as well as the occasional jaunt across the country and abroad. He went back on the road more and more as the 90s and the 21st Century came along and finally, at the behest and encouragement of longtime admirer and musician Brian Molnar, Kinky got back into writing and recording mostly full-time about ten years ago. By 2012, Kinky was hitting the road full-time with Molnar as his right-hand man. They toured for a good five years while Brian got Kink excited about recording again, insisting he wouldn’t “be on the clock” as he was so often when under contract with the big record companies. They even recorded at Kinky’s Echo Hill Ranch. This relaxed and excited Kinky about recording again and together they picked choice covers and old or unfinished Kinky songs for his first album in decades, The Loneliest Man I Ever Met. The process and the album reignited Kinky’s love of songwriting and he quickly fell back into his old habit of putting lyrics to resurrectioncoverOrder Kinky's New LP, Resurrection, By Clicking Abovemusic. Kinky wrote so much that he had plenty of material for the two albums that soon followed – Circus Of Life (2018) and the still-new Resurrection, which is getting the best reviews of his career. Brian produced Circus of Life and Kink’s old buddy and former bandmate, renowned guitarist/producer Larry Campbell (Bob Dylan, Levon Helm) was recruited to produce the gorgeous and timeless Resurrection. Willie Nelson appears on two of the three parts of the trilogy and had Kinky perform at his virtual July 4th Annual Picnic this year. Two new videos from Willie’s Luck Films for Resurrection add to the current virtual glow.

Kinky’s got the bug again alright, he is writing songs and new books and can’t wait to perform again. He never really stopped touring and performs with more gravitas and humor than is probably legal. As he navigates his eighth decade on this rock, the Kinkster impatiently waits for the current pandemic to fade so he can return to the theatres, clubs and book havens to regale the ever-willing public with his wisdom, humor and empathetic delivery. Once the shows get the green light, expect to see Kinky Friedman lighting up more than his cigar, for as long as it will burn.

                • Roger Len Smith 2020

Cyril Niccolai Let's It Out

Posted September 2020

CyrilNiccolai2020Long time Boomerocity followers may remember an interview I conducted eleven years ago with a handsome young man from France, Cyril Nicolai (here). He is the founder and front man for the band, The Fairchilds. We became fast friends from that interview but I’m also a genuine, sincere fan of his work. He’s an amazing songwriter, singer, musician, and even actor. When he’s not writing, singing, recording, or producing music, he can be found on the world’s theatric stages acting in theatric productions. Cyril is a man with a huge heart that matches his amazing talent and creativity.

While Cyril comes from a generation more than twenty years our junior, his experience and maturity is well beyond his youthful years. This is reflected abundantly in his depth and quality of work. The icing on the musical cake is when translates his musical vision to video. We’re featuring his latest music video on left side of this page. We encourage you to look his other videos under “The Fairchilds” as well as under his own name. Each and every one of his videos reflect a depth of talent and insight that few master let along constantly deliver on.

Back to our latest interview with Cyril.

Cyril and I recently connected via a Zoom call (he was calling from his home in the South of France) to talk about his latest album, ‘Let It Out’. A highly personal album, this release reveals his heart through a break-up as well as a song he wrote, ‘Hallelujah’, that he sang to his grandmother before her passing. That song was sung at her memorial service.

After watching our interview with Cyril, we encourage you to visit his website, TheFairchildsMusic.com, and order ‘Let It Out’ as well as his other music and merchandise – including a limited-edition print of the album cover.

Ricky Byrd Discusses Sobering Times

Posted October 2020

 


Ricky publicity shot 01Photo by Frankie ByrdIf you’re a baby boomer at all, changes are better than even that you’re more than well aware of Joan Jett and the Blackhearts. Joan’s co-guitarist until 1991, Ricky Byrd, has enjoyed working with (and sharing the stage with a ton of rock notables as Roger Daltrey, Ian Hunter, Paul McCartney, Alice Cooper, Joe Walsh, Ringo Starr, Dion, Jimmy Page, and scores of others.

Additionally, Ricky has put out four solo albums: Sobering Times (2020), Clean Getaway (2017), Lifer (2013), and Tough Room This World (2001). While he included a song or two regarding recovery on his first three albums, Sobering Times is the first album of Ricky’s that is one hundred percent focused on the recovery theme.

I genuinely hope you take the time to listen to/watch this interview. It’s funny. It’s informative. It’s laid back. It’s thought provoking. Most of all, if you or someone you know is in recovery or know you need to go into recovery, it is encouraging and uplifting.

After you’ve watched/listened to the interview, please, please, PLEASE click on RickyByrd.com and order Sobering Times if not all four of Ricky’s albums. At this writing, he’s signing ‘Sobering Times” if you order right away.

 

RickyByrdSoberingTimesCover 1 reduced Clean Getaway Lifer Tough Room . . . In This World

 Click on the album cover to order that album

Nils Lofgren On 'Weathered' and the Pandemic

Posted September 2020

Lofgren Head ShotWe’re always flattered here at Boomerocity when we get to speak to an artist. Imagine the pride we feel when we get to chat with them more than once. With that in mind, you’ll understand why we’re thrilled to be speaking with Nils Lofgren for our fourth time!

This time our interview with Nils is primarily about his new live album, “Weathered”, as well as about the pandemic and how it has affected him and his family and friends.

Before you click on the audio file on the right, I want to share with you a little bit about “Weathered”.

For those of you who don’t like to read a lot, I’ll just say that the album is freakin’ awesome and well worth your investment in it.

Yeah, it’s that good.

For those of you who like more detail ahead of listening to our interview with Nils, there this:

In between E Street Band and Crazy Horse work, master rock singer songwriter-guitarist Nils Lofgren fit in his first tour  with a full band in over 15 years. Inspired by the writing with the great Lou Reed on his last studio album, Nils knew it was time. Audience and band alike sharing their souls, gifts, spirit and energy on the tour made for a fresh, new live sound for Nils. The result is in an earthy, rockin’ album that breathes life into a world temporarily void of the excitement, energy, tenderness, and spontaneity of live music during COVID-19.

The 16-track collection, entitled Weathered, and issued on Lofgren’s own Cattle Track Road Records in double-CD configuration, was produced by the musician and his wife Amy, and is due out on August 21, 2020.

It was recorded on the road during select intimate tour dates in the U.S. supporting his recent Blue With Loustudio album. “My dear friends who made that album all agreed to come. Andy Newmark, Kevin McCormick, Cindy Mizelle, and my brother Tom Lofgren joining us to form an amazing band,” notes Nils. “In preparation for the tour my wonderful wife Amy hosted us all in our home and garage studio to put the show together. Amy designed our merchandise, cooked beautiful food for us and created a safe, welcoming musical environment for all. We created the show’s foundation to work from and headed out to share this fresh, new band.”

Improvisation has always been a key element in live performances for Nils, a veteran member of some of the greatest rock bands in history, as well as an accomplished and successful solo artist. “All the band members are old friends used to being encouraged to stretch out and improvise with me,” he explains. That freedom shows throughout Weathered. “Our crew did a fabulous job getting everything right for us to do our best every night.” He continues, “Regularly hearing inspired, improvisational surprises from your fellow bandmates elevated our interaction and made for one of a kind, unique shows every night. We all thrive in a live setting and at every show, the audience kicked the music up to a special level we only reach with their contagious, inspired energy.” That comes across brilliantly on this celebratory live album.

The album contains live renditions of two of the Lou Reed/Nils Lofgren penned songs, “Don’t Let Your Guard Down” and “Give,” along with Nils’ rocking protest song “Rock or Not” and the tenderly wistful “Too Blue to Play,” all from the Blue With Loualbum. Cindy Mizelle’s heartfelt vocals complement throughout the double album, but on “Big Tears Fall” they take the lead and on the duet “Tender Love” they are especially powerful.

In addition to her soulful harmonies, you’ll also hear Cindy’s improvisational “scatting” throughout, becoming another instrument inside this stellar band. The dark, minor blues “Too Many Miles” is a wonderful example of this.

Nils pushes his electric soloing to new heights throughout. In “Give,” a co-write and timely lyric with the great Lou Reed, you’ll hear him at his improvisational best, launching into a “backwards” guitar segment, mid solo.

There’s a fabulous 14-minute-plus version of the haunting “Girl in Motion,” set up by a wonderful studio story of Ringo NilsLofgrenCOLOR3 LOStarr watching the original recording go down and offering amazing advice.

It’s very rare for Nils to get the entire band that made a studio record out on the road with him. It pays off dramatically here. Andy Newmark on drums (John Lennon, Sly Stone, David Bowie, Eric Clapton…) Kevin McCormick on bass, vocals (Crosby, Stills and Nash, Jackson Browne, Melissa Ethridge, Keb’ Mo’…) Cindy Mizelle on vocals (Luther Vandross, Whitney Houston, Steely Dan, Bruce Springsteen…) and Tom Lofgren on guitars, keyboards, vocals, who’s been playing with Nils since his early band Grin, combine to create a fresh, inspired take on these classic Nils songs.

weatheredcoverOrder 'Weathered' By Clicking HereWeatheredincludes “Like Rain”from Grin and seven other standards from his solo work.Nils’ brothers Mike and Mark Lofgren join the band on the Hank Williams classic “Mind Your Own Business.”The art of improvisation resurfaces during the “Jam / Papa Was a Rolling Stone,”which builds to a crescendo before his classic “I Came To Dance.”

“We kept the shows reckless and fun with a lot of jamming and interaction. Tour bussing from town to town all over America, we all brought our collective experience and love for performing to every show,” Nils reflects. “Turning up to ‘eleven’ and wailing inside this amazing band was a joy and revelation to me, having been away from playing with my own electric band for so long. Proud to share this rough and ready collection that breathes new life and inspiration into the best of my songs.

“After 51 years on the road, I’m so grateful to have been inspired by this band and our audiences as never before!”

http://www.nilslofgren.com