Farmer Dave Speaks of Love, Heartbreak, and Utopia

October 13, 2020
Marty Halpern

Multi-instrumentalist and shaman to the California music scene Farmer Dave Scher has released a four-song EP titled “Speak of Love,” his first solo release since 2009’s “Flash Forward to the Good Times.” While Farmer Dave is legendary both musically and artistically, his main output has been as part of bands such as Beachwood Sparks, The Skiffle Players, and Kurt Vile and the Violators. This offering affords Farmer Dave the luxury of an unfiltered platform to get his message out.

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Joan Osborne Dials Up an A.M. Radio Sound with A Modern Message

September 25, 2020
Marty Halpern

Joan Osborne ; photo: Jeff Fasano

When Joan Osborne started kicking around ideas for her new album, she contemplated taking it in a couple of directions. First, a follow up to the Bob Dylan tribute album she released in 2017. After a few other thoughts and ideas didn’t materialize, Osborne gathered her group of longstanding backup vocalists and musicians and headed to the studio to record an album of new material.

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Bassist Karina Rykman set to release “City Kids” and more!

August 25, 2020
Marty Halpern

Like everyone else, Karina Rykman’s plans for 2020 have taken a dramatic shift. Coming off an incredibly busy 2019 which saw a significant rise in popularity and demand for new music, Rykman was set to hit the recording studio in March. Those plans were scrapped as New York became one of the epicenters for a massive COVID-19 outbreak.

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It’s flooding in Texas…so The Greyboy Allstars made an album

August 14, 2020
Marty Halpern

Greyboy Allstars / photo: Josh Mintz

Covid shutdown or not, 2020 is proving to be a productive year for Greyboy Allstars. In July, the band released “Como De Allstars,” its first album of new material in seven years. In August, they re-released their 1994 debut album “West Coast Boogaloo” on vinyl. Had it not been for that famed Texas rain, “Como De Allstars” might not exist.

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Here’s What’s Upstate

June 23, 2020
Marty Halpern

Upstate - photo: Patrick Capriglione

When Upstate released their second album, Healing, in February 2019, they knew they were going to tour to support it. What they didn’t know is that tour would allow their music to expand on stage to the point they wanted to release a live EP highlighting it. The result is Live at ArtsRiot.

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Leslie Mendelson Bares Her Soul

April 5, 2020
Marty Halpern

Leslie Mendelson. Photo: Shervin Lainez

Leslie Mendelson was blessed with a unique vibe and a pure voice. She doesn’t have to turn her dial up much past three to reach nearly unattainable vocal levels. The thought of her over-singing seems improbable. Mendelson is set to release her third album, If You Can’t Say Anything Nice on April 17. While talking with her about her upcoming release, she had the same easy-going spirit to her that comes through in her music.

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Circles Around the Sun Sets Course for A New Orbit

March 9, 2020
Marty Halpern

Photography by Piper Ferguson

When the members of Circles Around the Sun (CATS) met to discuss the musical direction they wanted for their next album, it didn’t take the quartet very long to reach a unanimous decision – they wanted to put out a dance record. Not just any dance record; a retro disco sound with plenty of cosmic vibe to it. 

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