Allman Brothers Band Announces Dates For Annual NYC Residency

MSO PR

Courtesy: MSO PR

The Allman Brothers Band is coming back to New York.  The band is returning to the Beacon Theatre for its annual March residency beginning March 1st.  The band will hold ten performances at the Beacon Theatre from March 1st – 16th.  This year’s annual residency marks its twenty-third year of performing at the famed theatre. The band has sold out its shows some two-hundred and ten times since it started performing at the theatre in 1989.  Founding member Gregg Allman discussed the upcoming annual stint.  “Yes, it’s that time”, he said.  “The Beacon run is always magical.  The room sounds great, lots of familiar faces and the band really stretches out.  After Macon, New York is really our second home.  There’s just something about it, and our fans know it.”

Tickets for the band’s Beacon Theatre performances go on sale beginning next Friday, January 11th at 10am ET.  They can be purchased at http://www.ticketmaster.com and http://www.beacontheatre.com.  They can also be ordered by phone toll free at 1-800-744-3000.  Fans in New York can also purchase them in person at the Beacon Theatre box office beginning next Saturday, January 12th.

 Along with its annual stay at the Beacon Theatre, the band has also been invited by fellow music vet Eric Clapton to perform at his annual “Crossroads” benefit show on March 12th and 13th.  Those performances will be at New York’s equally famed Madison Square Gardens.  The band will also headline a pair of dates at the annual Wanee Festival on April 19th and 20th in Live Oak, FL.  To check out the full listing of The Allman Brothers Band performance dates, fans can go online to http://www.allmanbrothersband.com, http://hittinthenote.com, and http://www.waneefestival.com

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it or its companion page, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Reel-Reviews/381028148587141.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Zac Brown Band Impresses Again On “Uncaged”

Courtesy: Southern Ground Artists/ROAR/Atlantic Records/wngreen

Zac Brown band’s third release, “Uncaged” is an interesting work.  While this record does have some of the same feel of the band’s 2008 debut, “The Foundation”, it goes in a slightly different direction.  What it tries to do is mix the sounds of its previous two releases into one full album.  It’s not the worst album that the band has released.  But it isn’t the best, either.  Regardless, it still has enough firepower to make it a fun listen.

The album opens very strongly with the song, ‘Jump Right In.’ The drums and whistles instantly conjure thoughts of Rio de Janeiro’s famed Carnival festival.  The song goes straight into the Jimmy Buffet song style that has made the Zac brown band so popular.  It’s just as uplifting lyrically as it is musically.  Brown sings in the song’s chorus, “You can jump right in/let the music pull you in/You can jump right in/Oh, lose yourself again/as the southern wind sings again/another lullaby.”  Simply put, this song is just a feel good song.  It’s about letting go of the worries of the world and simply having a good time every now and then.  It makes for a wonderful opening to this new album.

‘Jump Right In’ is followed by a song that is just as solid in the album’s title track.  While it’s just as solid a song, its general feel is quite different from ‘Jump Right In.’ This track has more of an Allman Brothers Band feel.  The use of the organ and the guitar work gives the song that feel.  And from the opening verse, listeners get more positive vibe.  Zac sings as the song opens, “Gonna drift to the great wide open/gonna set my spirit free/won’t stop till I reach the ocean/gonna break these chains all in me.”  The song’s second verse is just as uplifting.  He sings on verse two, “Gonna swim in the coldest river/gonna drink from a mountain spring/Live in the land of the great wide open/let the water roll all over me.”  The remainder of the song carries that same uplifting vibe.  Both musically and lyrically, it will get any listener moving.

The band kicks into a bluegrass vibe after these two songs in the album’s fourth track, ‘The Wind.’  Brown picks with the best of them in this song.  Rather than being one of the standard country style songs of lost love, Brown pays tribute to a very special woman.  He sings in this song, “Where the wind blows baby/you can bet/I’ll be ridin’ high with it/holdin’ on for my dear life just like I always did/Close yoru eyes babe/take a breath/say my name/and I’ll be there/My love will find you anywhere/anywhere, my love.”  The guitar breaks and musical backing in general make this one of the album’s top songs.  It would be no surprise if this song becomes one of the album’s singles.

Fans of ZBB in North Carolina will take pride knowing that “Uncaged” was recorded in the old north state.  It was recorded at Asheville’s Echo Mountain Recording.  Among the big name artists and bands that have recorded at Echo Mountain are the likes of:  Dierks Bentley, Darkest Hour, Soilwork, Smashing Pumpkins, and T. Bone Burnett, just to name a handful.  The studio’s list of who has recorded there is far longer. 

“Uncaged” is available in stores and online now.  The band is currently touring in support of the album.  Fans in North Carolina will get to see the band live when it makes a stop at Charlotte’s Verizon Wireless Amphitheater.  Fans can keep up with all the latest news and tour dates from Zac Brown band online in the meantime at http://www.zacbrownband.com, http://www.facebook.com/zacbrownband, and http://twitter.com/zacbrownband.

To keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news, go to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it or its companion page, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Reel-Reviews/381028148587141.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

“Everybody’s Talkin’” will leave everybody talkin’

Derek Trucks has made quite the name for himself, both as a solo artist and with the members of the legendary Allman Brothers Band.  His wife, Susan Tedeschi, has equally made her own place in the music world.  The two together have made one heck of a mark.  The Tedeschi Trucks Band’s debut album, “Revelator” earned a Grammy for Best Blues Album at this year’s Grammys.  And now, the band has followed up its award winning debut album with its equally impressive live release, “Everybody’s Talkin’.”

“Everybody’s Talkin’” is one more wonderful addition to the ranks of this young year’s best releases.  It comes across as one giant jam fest from the first notes of the album’s title track to the last tones of the cover of the Staple Sisters’ ‘Wade in The Water.’  Susan Tedeschi is a powerhouse, yet again, as she belts out tune after tune.  Her vocals could easily rival those of fellow blues legend Bonnie Raitt.  And husband Derek Trucks’ guitar work proves once again why he is one of the best guitarists around today.  He really gets his time to shine on the breakout jam sessions on ‘Learn How to Love’, ‘Bound For Glory’ and the band’s cover of Stevie Wonder’s ‘Uptight’, which is arguablythehighlight of the whole compilation. This cover is one of the moments when the band’s brass section–Maurice Brown (Trumpet) and Saunders Sermon (Trombone)–really shines.  Saxophonist Kebbi Williamsand fellow Derek Trucks Band member, Kofi Burbridge also gets to showcase his talents.  He gets his moment on the live take of ‘Nobobdy’s Free.’  That’s another aspect of this release’s greatness.  Although the band is named after the husband/wife duo of Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks, the live performances included in this set allows the whole band its moment to shine.  And does it ever shine.  Every member of the band shows what makes TTB the amazing organization that it is.

Whether it be any of the aforementioned songs or any of the other amazing pieces included on this double disc set, “Everbody’s Talkin’” is hands down, one of the best records of 2012.  It’s one of the best live albums to come along in a long time, too.  Much like Miles Davis’ groundbreaking record, “Kind of Blue”, “Everybody’s Talkin’” is one of those releases that fans will be enjoying years from now.  It’s one of those works in which listeners could easily get lost in a good way.  That’s because it’s what one could call a “Multi-purpose record.”   What that means is that it’s one of those records that is perfect for a lazy summer day, relaxing in the sun (or in a sunroom), for a road trip, or a rainy evening.  It’s even great for a cold, grey snowy day to warm people’s moods.  Every song has a different mood that’s fitting for one situation or another.  It fits any situation and any type of day.  There simply is not one bad song on this live release.  That being the case, even as a live release, “Everybody’s Talkin’” is going to be one of those records that fans are going to remember years after its release.

The band is currently out on tour.  Fans in North Carolina will get to see the band live when it performs at the annual MerleFest next Saturday, April 28th in Wilkesboro.  For more information on the festival, fans can go to http://www.merlefest.org.  More information on the band and its tour is available on the band’s website, http://www.tedeschitrucksband.com, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/DerekandSusan and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/DerekandSusan.

Tedeschi Trucks Band’s “Revelator” one of 2011′s best

It goes without saying that Suaan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks are two of the most well known and respected names in the music industry.  Trucks really came to fame when he joined southern rockers, The Allman Brothers Band.  Susan Tedeschi has made her own identity through her career with soaring vocals that could rival those of Bonnie Raitt, and equally impressive guitar work.  So it came as no surprise when this husband and wife blues duo joined forces to release their debut album under the Tedeschi Trucks Band moniker in June of this year.

The pair’s first teamup has produced quite the musical offspring.  Trucks brought along longtime Allman Brothers Band bassist, Oteil Burbridge.  Burbrige’s brother–who also happens to play with the Derek Trucks Band–Kofi also came along for the ride.  Together with a host of other musicians, the group has brought a multitude of influences, and infused them into the record to make what is one of the year’s best albums overall.

Most of the songs on “Revelator” are about either love gained or love lost.  In short, the lyircal theme of each song is one of romance.  But the album’s music more than makes up for that.  Not all of the songs instantly grip audiences.  But that’s actually a good thing.  Rather than simply hitting audiences on the first listen, “Revelator” grows on listeners each time it’s played.  That’s the sign of a great album.  That slow growth is thanks to the variety of influences from the variety of artists who came together on the album.  One of the songs that best exemplifies that slow growth is ‘Until You Remember’.  Now given, that song is another love song, lyrically.  But the music behind the song really gives a certain feeling to the lyrics.  Tedeschi sings on this song, “Every night I pray/that you’ll come back today/and hold me like you used to do…I’m sleeping wide awake/you know I can’t think straight about you…I’m burning with a love that’s turned blue”.  It goes without saying that it’s a song of lost love.  But the music makes up for the sappy lyrics by really giving life to those words.  It can also be said that this song is one on which Tedeschi’s vocals really soar.

Of course, while songs of love gained and lost are all over the album, there’s also a gospel style piece in ‘Bound for Glory’.  It’s such a catchy song, that it makes a person want to start clapping, like he/she was in church.  For those who want something more bluesy, “Revelator” offers plenty of that too.  Look no further than:  Don’t Let Me Slide’, ‘These Walls’, and the album’s opener, ‘Come See About Me’.  And for those who are really patient, “Revelator” offers an argument for owning the physical object over the digital in a hidden bonus track after the album’s closer, ‘Shelter’.  Audiences don’t have to wait long after ‘Shelter’ ends, either, for this track to start up.  And unlike the little instrumental break of ‘Shrimp and Grits’, it offers fans a full length blues instrumental song.

Whether it be for that bonus song, or the outstanding mix of song styles brought together on this opus, fans of both Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks have been given quite the musical treat with “Revelator”.  Mainstream success or not, it goes without saying that this album is one of the top albums of 2011.  And it’s one of the best blues albums to come along in a very long time.