Franti’s Latest LP “Rocks” Phil’s PIcks 2016 Albums Of The Year List

Michael Franti and Spearhead Soulrocker Cover Art

Courtesy: Fantasy Records

The time has come.  Today is New Year’s Eve eve.  That means 2016 is nearly in the books.  With that year right at it’s end, it’s time for the last two of this year’s Phil’s Picks best of lists.

Rounding out this year’s lists are the year’s top new albums overall and the year’s top new overall movies.  The year’s top new albums list is up first.  It was not an easy list to assemble either as there were so many stand out records released from across the musical universe’s many genres.

This year’s top albums list is represented by music from the jazz community, the world of children’s music, rock, blues, and even reggae in the form of Michael Franti and Spearhead’s new album Soulrocker.

As with every previous Phil’s Picks list, this list features Phil’s Picks’ top 10 new titles plus five honorable mention titles, bringing the total count to 15.  Having noted that here for you is Phil’s Picks 2016 Top 10 new albums.




  1. Michael Franti & SpearheadSoulrocker


  1. Santana IV


  1. Joe BonamassaBlues of Desperation


  1. YellowjacketsCohearance


  1. FoghatUnder The Influence


  1. The Okee Dokee BrothersSaddle Up


  1. Songs of the Night: Dance Recordings by the Joseph C. Smith Orchestra 1916 – 1925


  1. Marian HillAct I


  1. Love and a .38Nomad


  1. Red Hot Chili PeppersThe Getaway


  1. Rich RobinsonFlux


  1. Charles Lloyd and the MarvelsI Long To See You


  1. Logan Richardson Shift


  1. Tedeschi Trucks BandLet Me Get By


  1. Mountain HeartBlue Sky


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Bonamassa’s New Blues Record Is No Desperate Act From The Veteran Performer

Courtesy J&R Adventures

Courtesy J&R Adventures

Phil’s Picks has focused a lot lately on rock and other genres of music in the vastness of the musical universe.  Today, the focus shifts away from those genres to something a little bit less mainstream.  In today’s list, Phil’s Picks presents the year’s best new Jazz and blues records.  This year’s list presents a wide variety of acts, from more well-known acts such as The Rolling Stones, Joe Bonamassa and Yellowjackets to perhaps lesser known, but still talented acts such as Hazmat Modine, Takuya Kuroda and others.  It wasn’t an easy list to work up, either.  That’s because there was so much great material out there this year.  Combining jazz and blues into one list didn’t make things any easier.  But it got done.

As with every other list, the Top 10 New Jazz and Blues Albums features the year’s top 10 new jazz and blues albums.  It also includes five honorable mention titles for a total count of 15 albums.  That is not to take away anything from those honorable mention titles.  They are enjoyable in their own right and deserved to be noted, too.  Enough rambling.  Here, for everyone’s consideration, is Phil’s Picks’ 2016 Top 10 New Jazz and Blues Albums.




  1. Joe Bonamassa – Blues of Desperation


  1. YellowjacketsCohearance


  1. Joseph C. Smith OrchestraSongs of the Night


  1. John Coletrane – Trane 90


  1. The Rolling Stones – Blue & Lonesome


  1. James Hunter SixHold On!


  1. Takuya KurodaZiggerzagger


  1. Fela Ransom Kuti & His Koola LubitesHigh Life: Jazz & Afro Soul (’63 – ’69)


  1. Gregory PorterTake Me To The Alley


  1. Quinn SullivanMidnight Highway


  1. Charles Lloyd & The MarvelsI Long To See You


  1. Logan RichardsonShift


  1. Hazmat ModineExtra – Deluxe – Supreme


  1. Keely Smith – The Intimate Keely Smith


  1. Jazz Haunts & Magic Vaults – The New Lost Classics of Resonance




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Archeophone Records Announces New Joseph C. Smith Anthology

Courtesy:  Archeohone Records

Courtesy: Archeohone Records

Later this month Archeophone Records will release an invaluable new classic music anthology from famed band leader Joseph C. Smith.

Songs of the Night: Dance Recordings, 1916 – 1925 will be released Friday, July 29th via Archeophone Records.  The double-disc collection, forty-seven song anthology is the first ever collection of songs from the Joseph C. Smith Orchestra.  It celebrates the centennial of his first recordings and features a thirty-two page, full-color booklet with rare photos and extensive essay.  Along with celebrating Smith’s first recordings, the new set also celebrates many of his other firsts, too.  He was the first to record songs by Cole Porter and George Gershwin and the first to feature vocal refrains on dance records such as ‘Smiles.’  That’s not all.  Smith also had the first hits of songs such as ‘Hindustan,’ ‘Rose Room,’ ‘Alice Blue Gown,’ and ‘Three O’Clock In The Morning.’  As if that isn’t enough he was also the first band leader to spotlight instrumental solos on dance records.  One of the most notable of those solos came in the form of the laughing trombone on ‘Yellow Dog Blues.’ As Ryan Barna notes in the collection’s liner notes, Smith was the forbear to the likes of The Paul Whiteman Orchestra, The Dorsey Brothers, and even Glen Miller.  Speaking of instrumentals, Smith’s orchestra served as the starting point for so many great instrumentalists including: trombonist Harry Raderman, xylophonists Teddy Brown and George Hamilton Green, pianists Hugo Frey, Harry Akst, and William Berge, and saxophonist Rudy Wiedoeft.  The full track listing for Songs of the Night: Dance Recordings, 1916 – 1925 is noted below.


CD and Digital Track List:


CD 1

  1. Songs of the Night
  2. Money Blues
  3. I’ve a Shooting Box in Scotland
  4. Havanola
  5. Poor Butterfly
  6. Allah’s Holiday
  7. St. Elmo
  8. Dance and Grow Thin
  9. Missouri Waltz
  10. Calicoco
  11. When You Come Back
  12. Smiles
  13. Rose Room
  14. Mary
  15. Hindustan
  16. Rockin’ the Boat
  17. Head Over Heels
  18. Mickey
  19. Dear Old Pal of Mine
  20. Somebody’s Sweetheart and Good Morning, Judge
  21. Rainy Day Blues
  22. Coo Coo
  23. The Vamp

CD 2

  1. Who Did It?
  2. Peggy
  3. Yellow Dog Blues
  4. Happy
  5. Lovely Summertime
  6. That Naughty Waltz
  7. Karavan
  8. Ching-a-Ling’s Jazz Bazaar
  9. Love Nest
  10. Alice Blue Gown
  11. Sally
  12. I Lost My Heart to You
  13. Why, Dear?
  14. It’s You
  15. Stealing
  16. Three O’Clock in the Morning
  17. While Miami Dreams
  18. Rose of Stamboul
  19. Where Is the Man of My Dreams
  20. Sweetheart of Sigma Chi
  21. Stella
  22. It Ain’t Gonna Rain No Mo!
  23. Driftwood
  24. I Like You Best of All


More information on this and other titles from Archeophone Records is available online now at:










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