Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the Drum

Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the Drum

Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the Drum

 

Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the Drum with support from SKAM & Dead Shed Jokers. With two acts before Headliners to warm The Globe on a cold Monday in February.  Local scuzzy rocking band Dead Shed Jokers always make a statement. Loud and mixing influences from Nick Cave to Black Sabbath via The Doors. Energetic vocalist Hywel Davies keeps the band on track. Though at times tonight the sound drowned the vocals and the rest of the quintet at times seem to be off track with each other. That said as the crowds grew they filled The Globe, Cardiff with a rocking vibe to get Monday night exciting.

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Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the DrumSecond band on the menu from Leicester a powerful trio SKAM. With a new album that is attracting attention as we are all falling for the Hard Rock concept album The Amazing Memoirs of Geoffrey Goddard.  The Globe pumped up for the performance and the entrance by the trio did not disappoint. With Steve Hill upfront on vocals and guitar, and a hard rocking powerhouse of a rhythm section comprising bassist Neal Hill and drummer Matt Gilmore. Every track smashed through the venue with the sound that is glorious traditional hard rock power, with a very charismatic style from Steve up front. Stand out numbers were Between The Eyes from the latest album and from the past Holy City from 2014 album Peacemaker. This was a really up-front no holds barred performance with great timing and knew how to get the live effect from every studio number played. They are definite crowd pleasers as Fading Before The Sun was given the live and proud treatment. We no longer cared it was a Monday and work beckoned tomorrow this is music that you want to play on. With the current single getting lots of Planet Rock airplay we were overjoyed to hear it up close and personal as Take It or Leave It filled the speakers, one thing for certain no one in the audiences was leaving not a fan of SKAM. Closing out a dynamic set with a War Pigs rendition giving the crowd no excuse but to join in an excellent closing medley.

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Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the DrumThen to close out marvellous Monday 6th February RavenEye back in Cardiff and we were hot to rock. The venue was packed for RavenEye the excitement rising as Oli Brown and the band always excite with performances that are energetic and full of rocking bounce. Having seen Oli mature from the early days singing the blues into a rocker that captivates the audience’s energy and distils it through his guitar and vocals. This is a trio of extroverts who come alive on stage bouncing off the speakers and bass drum literally during a mesmerising live performance. With Adam Breeze joining the pairing of Oli and Aaron Spiers on bass. This is a trio that is hard-hitting, the music punches you in the solar plexus and then spirals in a chaotic force as the rock courses through your veins. This is exciting live music. Fast, furious with scintillating licks and riffs from Oli’s six-string weapon of choice. Leftover from the days of blues is the ever-present thumb pick giving his guitar a sound that lingers long and hard. The threesome delivers real showmanship, as they use every inch of the venue from the top of the drum speakers and then Oli Brown was given a piggyback ride through the crowds on Aarons’ shoulders. This is not showmanship for effect, not a note is missed the music is never sacrificed for the show. Music is the show. They know how to entertain. And tonight they entertained so Monday becomes the new Saturday night.

Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the Drum

RavenEye is no one-trick pony of loud and hard-hitting sound they bend and shape the sound as tracks from Nova show. Opening with Hate this is hard, heavy with a rawness that is the title in music and then towards the end the slower ballad Eternity no bass, no drums vocals and guitars as Aaron’s and Adam’s acoustics join Oli’s electric. Both from Nova the album that set down the parameters of the band.

Rocking The Globe RavenEye Headlines from Top of the Drum

Now, lead singers often take the mic from the stand. Not many guitarist/singers do. But the Oli likes to mix it up so he does playing the guitar left-handed and spitting the vocals down the mic held in the right. You have to pay attention as relax for a split second and an awesome action will be missed. The music is fast and so are the band members the music and movement changes in a split-second. We were told of the new app between Madeline and Oh My Love. Through the set, we step back in time as we visit the first E.P. Breaking Out, with tracks interspersed through the set including Hey Hey Yeah early in the set to the closing number You Got It.  By the end of the night, we certainly Got It we were on a rocking high and once a RavenEye song their strength means they always have a place on the set list. We also heard new music that just fits Oli’s amazing vocals and Turn The Lights Out the penultimate song promises that the new album due later this year is going to be another winner for RavenEye fans. We are already excited that soon there will be new songs to learn. Everyone left The Globe with that Monday feeling dispelled by hard rock that delivered with an energy that is uplifting and revitalizing. Cardiff says come back soon RavenEye.

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Delicious Dirty Listenable Rock as RavenEye Creates Nova

Delicious Dirty Listenable Rock as RavenEye Creates NovaDelicious Dirty Listenable Rock as RavenEye Creates Nova

This, Nova is the Long Awaited follow-up to their debut EP, Breaking Out. Since its release in May 2015 they have definitely broken out with the latest recording Nova. Back in the studio after touring USA, Europe and UK including Steelhouse Festival and Download. The performances have honed the style, texture and tone of the thumb picking rock guitarist Oli Brown with a rhythm section that kills the beat Aaron Spiers on bass and new drummer Adam Breeze this is a mix that is hot enough to melt the hardest granite, rock that shatters and coalesces around Oli’s vocals.

The rock is fast, hard and furious the studio sound captures the high-energy live performance of Oli, Nova distills the essence of RavenEye, mixing the sound, beats and rhythms into a musical cocktail that is easy on the ear. The studio sound is a result of months of being on the road whether headlining, part of a festival or opening for bands such as Slash, Blues Pills and Halestorm. Wherever they play they attract attention as they are fast becoming the live band you have to see time and time again.

Nova is an eleven track fairground ride of whoops, hard-hitting rock and riffs and licks that break the sonic barrier. The tracks bring dimensions to be explored and uncovered, as you return to listen again you pick up on another tasty morsel of rock that makes Nova a complete item. RavenEye achieves this with blues that grooves deep down in the structure of the music, raw sounds that echo around the room, rock that is full of edgy riffs and vocals that hook on to the tone and delivers a 21st Century super-nova.

Kicking off with an ear capturing riff Wanna Feel You makes a statement Oli Brown wants to be heard loud, hard and rocking out of your speakers. His vocals have a control that determines the licks and hooks that his guitar hangs on to and the rhythm section is a powerhouse for his stunning modern RavenEye Rock.

Nova has a strutting boldness, a confidence in the rock the band produces full of the underlying signature of Oli’s sludgy dirty sleazy blues as he layers on the tonal beating heart of rock it is as hard as granite and shines with glints of blue and veins on interest. Every track has a point of interest the change in beat with a lightning of tone Hero has that instantly recognisable foot tapping rock beat with Gunnar Olsen on drums throughout the album throwing out the sticks so that they hit the skin with a solid determination. Taking over duties behind the drums on tour in future is Adam Breeze who will have the luxury of playing with bassist Aaron Spiers who has fat greasy deep bass lines that pulling the listener deep into the music. The album now is hitting the halfway point and is in a groove you want to stay in and get to know the new album and latest incarnation of the band.

Halfway through and Supernova hits the speakers as ever the growling vocals of Oli interplays with his guitar so that the vocals and guitar work as one incorporated powerful animal of an instrument. It is this interplay that allows there to be a difference in the approach to the tracks yet they are still RavenEye whether the sound is blues, grunge or the distinctive play that is RavenEye. The chugging rock of Madeline drives the vocals and has a maturity of tone that makes this a raucous number that definitely, like the lyrics, reaps what it has sown as Madeline is asked the question. Some of the titles are self-explanatory with the title-determining the lyrics and approach to RavenEye’s rock. Inside internalised with doubt, Hate is what it says on the tin. Then the closing numbers Out of The Rain with the rumbling bass incessant like rain and the yearning gentler vocals that act as a lightening of the rougher moment this is rock that excites. Closing with Eternity a gentler number full of acoustic intricacies delivered by Oli a musician full of confidence at ease with the music he wants to deliver harking back yes, but the true direction is striding forward with music for today’s audiences.

The album’s name NOVA is a perfect reflection of the explosion of recognition that RavenEye has achieved in such a short time. The band is a rock explosion they certainly have suddenly brightened the firmament of the British rock scene and will be shining their Supanova Rock for many years to come.

RavenEye – Nova – Frontiers Music s.r.l

TEN pawprint half inchdoodle paws out of TEN ….

Track Listing

  1. Wanna Feel You
  2. Come With Me
  3. Inside
  4. Hero
  5. Supernova
  6. Walls
  7. Oh My Love
  8. Madeline
  9. Hate
  10. Out Of The Rain
  11. Eternity

A Force Of Nature Sari Drives the Blues

A Force Of Nature Sari Drives the Blues

A Force Of Nature Sari Drives the Blues

Mahaton Records

 

 

A Force Of Nature, Sari Drives the Blues, Sari Schorr brings a wealth of experience from life, influencing her song writing and vocal delivery.  Sari has attracted a huge blast of attention, promising that she can sing and perform. Bluesdoodles confirms this is a reality not hyperbole and the over use of adjectives. Sari Schorr and The Engine Room really know how to deliver the sound they want to create building on the lyrics and surround the vocal power and intensity of Sari. The album title states what Sari and her band deliver – A Force of Nature.

If you want your blues traditional with the feet of the musicians firmly stuck in a swamp then look elsewhere. Sari and her band and guests combined with the superb production skills of Mike Vernon have explored the blues with this is a sparkling sapphire of a performance.

The album is a journey where you are taken on a ride that explores life, highs, lows through a mixture of self-penned and artfully chosen covers.  Step aboard The Force of Nature with – Ain’t Got No Money greed, money addiction, Sari and outsider living in New York looks on and makes her own choices with the pursuit of music rather than wealth. Her dreams are motivation not the lure of the greenback.  No subject is taboo for Sari, the lyrics are full of description, littered with metaphors chosen to whip up the listeners imagination. The lyrics are short stories that encapsulate a novel. The power of the sonnet over the epic poem.

Addiction stays at the heart of Aunt Hazel and it’s destructive. Heroin is the villain who laughs and the havoc it causes as life unravels. Modern themes for a singer with the power to entrance and create blues that has a hard edge reflecting modern life. The lyrics have a relevancy. From addiction, we explore abuse whether domestic or in the work-place. Abuse that is painful and effects so many is captured in Damn the Reason opening with a mournful guitar lick that pulls your emotional heartstrings. With its driving relentless rhythm you are trapped in the music reflecting the feeling of being trapped in an abusive relationship and the inability to escape. Sari’s vocals wrapped in the music and love is the hook that keeps us caged.

 

The first cover is Leadbelly’s Black Betty given a make-over and the single helping to catapult Sari, the album and her music into the centre of everyone’s attention. Following on, with Walter Trout guesting, is Work No More. Walter’s guitar brings a sting to the number so personal to him and reflects the song written with passion and love. Sari adding her lyrical interpretation a women’s empathy into the words with the piano from David Keys adding more layers of emotive textures.

 

The power of her vocals seer through the music the lyrical artistry remains from the highest note through to the sustained notes. Oklahoma and Kiss Me features Oli Brown adding his guitar tone. It is every time the authority of Sari’s voice that creates the mood. She finds lyrics in the mundane as her new found love for Oklahoma as she changed her plans and re-joined the Joe Louis Walker tour, enjoying, embracing the unexpected means this is getting the best out of life whatever its twists and turns.

 

Unexpectedly, Stop! In the Name of Love is included, captured in one-take a perfect cover despite her reservations brings this forceful, poetic album almost to a close but not before Ordinary Life.  Jesus Lavillas piano intro is intimate and leads into a thoughtful, soulful Sari. Leaving us with  a track slower quieter than the others we are left with another side of a talent that is pushing the boundaries  through music that captures our attention.  There is nothing ordinary about the talent of Sari Schorr, as she shapes and bends music to create a Force of Nature.

 

What sets this album above so many you listen to, its heart and emotional flow is determined by the Blues, yet there is more it is the experience of Sari and the musicians she has surrounded herself. They add soul, jazz and music that demands to be listened to. The tracks all have a story to tell, the music shapes that story and the textured layers insuring your musical journey is full of interest. Sari is herself, she is proud and addresses issues that shapes society.   From Greed to Prostitution, Love of Pitt Bulls through to musicians experiences travelling on the road.

 

Forceful blues, A Force Of Nature this is most definitely an album in the running for Album of 2016!

Sari Schorr – A Force Of Nature – Manhaton Records

Bluesdoodles gives this CD TEN pawprint half inchdoodle paws out of TEN ….

Track Listing

  1. Ain’t Got No Money
  2. Aunt Hazel
  3. Damn The Reason
  4. Cat And Mouse
  5. Black Betty
  6. Work No More
  7. Demolition Man
  8. Oklahoma
  9. Letting Go
  10. Kiss Me
  11. Stop! In The Name Of Love
  12. Ordinary Lives

UK TOUR DATES AUTUM 2016
SEPTEMBER

Sept 9 Darlington RnB Club, The Forum Music Centre, Darlington, UK
Sept 5 Half Moon Putney, London, UK (Album Launch)
Sept 10 Blues Club, Devizes, Wiltshire, UK
Sept 11 Winchester Discovery Centre, Winchester, UK
Sept 14 The Tunnels, Bristol, UK
Sept 15 Southern Pavilion, Worthing Pier, West Sussex, UK
Sept 16 New Crawdaddy, Billericay Town FC Billericay, UK
Sept 17 Old Town Hall, High Street, Hemel Hempstead, UK
Sept 23 Selby Town Hall Yorkshire, UK
Sept 24 The Iron Road, Evesham, Worcestershire, UK
Sept 25 Hope Tavern, Caistor Rd, Holton-le-Moor, Market Rasen, Lincs, UK
Sept 28 Vonnies Blues Club, Cheltenham
Sept 29 Cranleigh Arts Centre, High Street, Cranleigh, Surrey
Sept 30 B.A.R Festival, France

OCTOBER
October 1 Hereford Blues Club, Booth Hall, Hereford, UK
October 6 Bar Brunel Bridgewater, UK
October 7 Deux Rivieres Blues Festival, Brittany, France


Bluesdoodles Interview with Sari Schorr – HERE

Force Of Nature Sari Schorr Talks to Bluesdoodles

Force Of Nature Sari Schorr Talks to Bluesdoodles
Photo Credit Rob Blackman

Force Of Nature Sari Schorr Talks to Bluesdoodles

BD:  Big thank you for taking time out of your tour schedule to chat with Bluesdoodles. Thank you so much for letting Bluesdoodles have a copy of your debut album A Force Of Nature, your forthcoming album before its release. More of that later I am sure.

We built a rapport talking about my hair colour, album covers, dogs and more this is what Sari said about the album cover and more.

Sari: For example, I had a beautiful picture of a tree I tried to convince everyone would be a perfect album cover, but I lost that argument. Yea I am learning to pick and choose my arguments, try and argue those that I am going to win. The good thing about the album cover is that it was a last-minute photo shoot. I had no idea I was going to do it so I didn’t have to think about it. I didn’t plan for it I just thought it was a few extra publicity shots so there was no pressure as we already had the album cover it is now the picture inside of me dancing taken by a friend of mine Amy Kirwin we thought that was going to  be the cover. So that is why that shoot was one of the most pleasant photo shoots I had ever been on with Rob Blackman.

I am a hobbyist photographer I am working on a book about my three Pitbulls. I turn my tiny Brooklyn Apartment into a studio and when my husband came home it was like something out of Lucille Ball  “Whatever have you done” Sari laughs. The ridiculous costumes the dogs were in, lights everywhere, blue screen it was ridiculous. We chatted about walking dogs great to find another common point including walking the dog first thing in the morning. Sari has five flights of stairs and three walks, lots of exercise, they love Brooklyn Park, Prospect Park and into Manhattan they love Central Park where there are a couple of lakes they can swim in.

Let me thank you for scheduling it a bit earlier,  I suppose everyone wants to speak to you now  I am so busy yea  overnight success after a life time of work. But it makes you a lot more grateful.  Yes, we all have hiccups in life and sometimes is too easy at the beginning they can be a real shock to the system.  I think without these hiccups, I like the way you put that these opportunities for growth have given me lots of opportunities for some great song writing material.  We will be talking about your amazing songs later but let’s start at the beginning.

BD: What were your early musical influences were they classical through your Opera singing training?

Sari: My earliest was jazz Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan Nat King Cole and then from there I started digging backwards. Who were their influences that I discovered the great classic female blues singers, Bessie Smith, Mamie Smith, Big Mama Thornton etc. then it was this realization these women just completely connected with me. Their voices resonated in a way I could identify with because as a Jazz singer I was always overpowering the band. I was always told “Could you try and tone it down a little?” “You have a five-octave range but do you have to use it”. Laughing, you have a loud voice do you have to use it. I was always trying to be less, be demure and finally when I discovered these women who lead me into the blues just this felt like the key that really opened me up to realise who I was.  Yes, you do have a big voice.  Yea, nothing petite.   You have a big voice tuneful but keeps its shaping of the tone  Yes, absolutely right about that I think  Studying with an Opera teacher really early was a good thing made me conscious of tone and pitch the quality and placement of voice its technique has so much to do with it. Then you have to find a way to get past the technique forget it and become the storyteller the singer. Just the singer you can’t do both thinking about technique and trying to deliver a message. Yes, that is like all art forms it is about being instinctive. It has to become instinctive, that is the artistry when technique becomes invisible to you and it’s rooted in your subconscious. Everything else in your conscious mind becomes the artistry and that is when you really connect with the audience and goes straight to the heart. Easy to connect to negativity human brain right away goes to negativity in order to be an artist and inspired you have to be open and positive be an individual and understand who you are.   That was also part of my journey finding my real voice, early on you are influenced by artists you admire. You want to emulate and emulation is the first step to achieving artistry. But you have to move beyond that to find out who you are and that is a very, very hard journey and is what separates out the great artist from everybody else. It’s that extra thing that uniqueness, that some great artists are able to achieve as they have great awareness of themselves and that means the good and the bad. You have to embrace all those things about yourself take it all on use all that stuff, it all has something to say. All those life experiences, personality’s flaws and those opportunities for growth all lead you towards being able to communicate in a much more honest way. They all add up to artistic integrity, you have to have all those resources. You can’t be self-conscious, you can’t be yourself the singer singing the song you have to be the song itself. It sounds I know a little bit odd, but you have to dissolve into just being the vehicle for the song and you are communicating with the audience.  It is not about you, that is the other thing that is so hard, because there is so much attention in the artist, the truth is I am the least important part of it; it’s the emotion the message I am sharing I am just a vehicle for all of those things for the benefit of an audience who wants to hear it.

BD: Your set at Blues On the Farm was excellent

Sari: Thank you so much, we were hoping for sunshine, but it turned out that the rain added a great feeling to the whole thig. I still have mud on my boots, I love it. It was a wet weekend

BD: Currently on tour with your new band The Engine Room. It was really obvious when I saw you live that you have a real connection on stage with Innes Sibun on guitar

Sari: Innes is an unbelievably good guitarist, I never in  a million years thought  I would have the good fortune to be in a band with him and feel he is my brother. He is my brother from another mother, we joke about it all the time but we are so connected with each other spiritually, musically, and artistically. We often say it’s amazing he hears me sing and if his guitar could sing it he says would sound like my voice. The same is true if my voice could play guitar it is what his guitar does would represent my voice. We anticipate each other’s moves, no show is ever the same we are completely in the moment. That takes a lot of courage as this can go terribly wrong in a moment but laughing we like to live dangerously. We are on the edge all the time.

BD: How did you and the band hook up.

Sari: For the album the band hadn’t hooked up.  On the record, Nani Conde played bass he is one of the greatest bass players in Spain, the band hadn’t been formed yet. Because Mike Vernon lives in Spain his beautiful villa outside Malaga we had recorded a couple of demo’s in Spain pre-album and  I fell in love with the studio. I fell in love with the people who worked there, it is a more intimate studio it felt very personal not like the big corporate studios I am accustomed to recording in. I said to Mike I would really love to record the album here where everyone can go for lunch around the corner a two-hour break that costs $5 for a four-course meal I can live with this I thought. So when Mike asked me who would you like featured on your album, create a short A list. Innes was on top of the list because I knew Mike had done couple of albums with him, I knew we had this mutual connection and I was living in Paris at the time working on an Amnesty International project. I was asked to sing on a project sort of   We Are The World with lots of international artists. I also had to go back to New York to produce Carly Simon’s session, it really didn’t need any producing I hit the record button

“Carly go!” and she did it in one take and that was the extent of it. While I happened to be back in  New York  there was a  Rory Gallagher Tribute at the Iridium and I was asked to perform I agreed to it and Innes Sibun was a guest so we met for the first time at that Rory Gallagher tribute. We met backstage we probably said two words to each other, I was intimidated and everyone wanted to talk to him and I didn’t want to get in the way. Two years later when Mike asked who did I want? on the record I said Innes. He called, Innes was on tour in Germany and he said he would love to I couldn’t believe it he said he’d be back the next week which was perfect. After the recording Mike and I were so depressed it was so perfect.  Now how are we going to produce this live, Innes it’s a one-off what are we going to do. How are we going to put a band together that sounds as good as the record. Innes came in our words were still hanging in the air. He said “I love this project so much, I believe that this project is going to be so great and important I would love to be the guitar player” Mike and I looked at each other, our mouths just dropped and then we said Yes. Soon as we had Innes on board everything else would fall in place. And it did. We got Kevin Jeffries on bass, Kevin O’Rourke on drums, and Anders Olinder on keyboards. We have The Engine Room. <em>Will they be touring in America and beyond? </em>Yes, they will be with a bigger tour of America in 2017 planned. This is the band I will tour all over the world with.

 

BD: I have always been interested in the lyrics of songs. Where do you get your inspiration for your songwriting it is not just personal, lots of politics and other themes, there is a real narrative to it.

Sari: Thank you for recognising that, I struggle with the lyrics, it hurts. When I have to sit down and start working on a lyric it feels like diving into an ice-cold bucket of water. It stings my whole body, I procrastinate because it scares me to death writing lyrics. I really work on lyric melodies, music comes easily to me it is the lyrics that provides the challenge. It is important to me to find relevant subjects something that I can bring to the subject through my own perspective and life experience and to be able to sing with weighty lyrics makes me feel I am contributing something of value that is it I want to contribute something of value and I can only do that if I am singing about relevant subjects that have meaning to people that are inspiring and also painful, that is life. I really believe we are all spiritual beings having a human experience.  When I sit down to write, the first thing I do is clear my mind okay we are spiritual beings what is the connection between all of us what is resonating and I just tap into something that’s definitely bigger than me. Even with Letting Go one of the songs I wrote with Mike Vernon.  That is one example of a lyric I wrote very quickly, well honestly I didn’t write it – it came to me. Mike Vernon lost his wife about a year ago, we were sitting in his dining room and there was a picture of his beautiful wife Natalie on the shelf and I kept looking at this picture. I was thinking how hard it must be for Mike being without her now. I came up with a melody, I was thinking about Natalie and those lyrics were completely formed I honestly feel she sent those lyrics to me as a gift and every time I sing that song I always thank her for that song. Some of the great lyrics I write, that sounds arrogant, but I saying that because I don’t think I wrote them, chuckling, I look as those lyrics and think Oh My God! I am not smart enough to write this that didn’t come from me laughing. I think we are all capable of doing things well beyond our means when we tap into the some kind of creative energy that surrounds all of us. As Artists we just spend more of our lives trying to harness that creative energy, we catch onto it a little bit more often because we dedicate ourselves to doing that, we dedicate ourselves to the pain and suffering to be creative. Art is a living breathing thing, we are always developing, always changing. I never sing a song the same way, never.  I was talking about this to my bass player and he said he never plays a bass line the same way there are subtle differences we are not the person we were a moment ago. We are not the better version of ourselves that’s  coming two minutes ahead so we have a lot to look forward to laughing that is why we are allowed to make mistakes now because it is us and the past in two seconds it will be that was when I was very immature then. <strong>Laughing I am still immature at sixty too late for me to reach maturity. </strong>Good trick is never grow-up! Every day is the first day of the rest of your life I honestly believe that. I have reinvented myself many, many times. Finally, figured out who I am and I can make a contribution.

 

BD: The title A Force Of Nature reflects your personality and musical signature, rather than taking a track as a title.  Tell us a bit about making the album and the importance of Mike Vernon as Producer in shaping the finished product.

Sari: He is so talented. It is no wonder that he is a living legend an iconic producer because I have never worked with someone with his deep sense of awareness of music.  He hears everything. And then he has a vision like he can see what it is supposed to sound like before it happens, he sees the picture painted while the canvas is still blank because he knows so clearly what the end result should be he can guide the musicians and artists to get there without putting his own imprint on it. He doesn’t force his own sound, he brings out the best of the people he has in the studio which is incredible. Somehow he knows what we are capable of, what we don’t even know. He pushes you in such an inspiring way, I have worked with producers that brings you to tears, frustrate the hell out of you it is all negative. I have seen musicians storm out of sessions but with Mike everyone is hanging on to his every word, they want more feedback from him because he does it in such a loving and inspiring way. The truth is you have to be like a psychotherapist to work with a bunch of musicians in a recording studio, basically telling them that’s good but not good enough, musicians are very sensitive. He does it in a way that brings out the best in everybody, as soon as you tell someone they’re not good or you criticize, the brain shuts down and creativity can’t happen under a negative influence, it is just not possible, the human brain really does not function under negativity.  That is the thing that so many producers just don’t understand, they do not understand human nature but Mike is a genius, he has got an incredible intuition, he has confidence to trust his intuition he is opinionated when he knows he is right and for the benefit of the project and believe me when you are in the studio with him, everybody trusts him. You put your life in his hands gladly and it was his idea to call the album Force Of Nature, it was a line from a review he had remembered that particular sentence from the review and it was his idea.  Alan at record label (Manhaton Records) agreed, and I was still thinking we can have a nice picture of a tree on the cover. It would have been ridiculous laughing, it is a beautiful tree, I took the picture in Germany it’s a magical tree I was wrong about that. Sometimes I have to step out of the way and let them make marketing decisions, they always run everything by me, but I am not one of those artists that would ever say I make all the decisions that the album is all about me. It is not! It is about all the people I am so fortunate to work with. I give them all the room they need to succeed. I am working with Mike because I trust him completely, even with Stop In The Name of Love, when he suggested doing that I thought there is no way I can do justice to that song, I can’t do this. Mike said listen to me, if you do not feel comfortable with this song we won’t do it but I said I am working with you because I trust that you can see things I can’t I am relying on you to see where my blind spots are, everyone has  a blind spot. If you think it’s a good idea I will try it and we did and we basically got the song in the first take. Just because I didn’t think I was going to be able to do it, so I had nothing to lose I just went in and went for it thinking they would say you are right this isn’t working. Ended up being basically the final take.

 

BD:  That leads on to the next question. The album is predominately your self-penned numbers, you told us how Stop In The Name Of Love got included.  So how did the other two covers get included Leadbelly’s classic Black Betty performed in a completely different way and the Walter Trout Number, Work No More?  

Sari: I was so honoured when I was asked to sing at Carnegie Hall, on the Leadbelly Fest, they chose the Black Betty for me.  When I was studying Ram Jam version, I thought if I am going to do this I’ve got to find a way to make it my own sort of meditated on what the song meant to me. It became very clear where I wanted to go with the Song. Then I met Walter Trout, when I was on tour Joe Louis Walker, we re-connected at the Leadbelly Fest in Carnegie Hall heard I was making an album and he said I would love to part of it. So I said we would love you to be part of it.  I wanted to honour him by doing one of his songs, we talked about a bunch of different ideas. He said there is one song that is important to me it is about a woman who practically raised me and I really loved her name was Irene and it was Johnny Winter’s favourite song so I said let’s do that one so that is how we ended up going with Work No More.

 

BD: That is lovely, so often covers included in an album feel like fillers, but these have deep stories attached to them why they are in the mix and they fit so well. Sari: We had to leave of some originals, we had too many songs for the first album and that was the hardest thing choosing which songs would have to be put on the side. There will be another album, Innes and I are already starting to work on material for the second album even though we have material already the songs that had to wait from the first one.  You know, you have your whole life to make the first one but only very short amount of time to make your second one so already working on it so we don’t disappoint anyone.

BD: The album includes some special guests including guitarists Oli Brown, Walter Trout and keyboardist John Baggot.  What extra dimensions did they add to the tracks they appear on?

Sari: Mike worked with Oli Brown when playing the blues, he is an incredible guitarist, what a nice guy I enjoyed working with him in the studio. Soon as he stepped in we had a connection right away it was fun we ended up doing a couple of extra songs with him. Initially only coming into to do one song but we were having too much fun. I think everybody comes from their perspective. All the artists we have on the record bring their own special qualities. We have a couple of incredible pianists on the record from Spain, incredibly accomplished players.  Jesus Lavillas who is playing on Ordinary Life comes from a beautiful jazz background and having a little bit of jazz infused on the record. John Baggott, playing I don’t even know how to describe him, he is a multi-instrumentalist he can do everything, Jazz, rock, Blues, Soul and he just puts so much sparkle yes he adds  beautiful sparkle to the tracks. Walter – the beautiful solo that he did. He did the solo in one take, he was so inspired it was so emotional he did it and the engineer said we’re done, he listened back and said yep, we’re done.

BD: If you were putting together the perfect band with members from across the years (dead or alive) who would you have playing?

Sari: What a great question. I have to say I really do live in the moment so would have the exact band I have at the moment they are a tremendous gift that I recognise because I am  so honoured to be working with these musicians, that is why I gave them a name. I wanted them to have the attention they deserve, the recognition and not just be my name. The Engine Room represents the band of my dreams.

BD: Excellent, You have the band but if you could time travel back into the past and listen to in the moment?

Sari: Jimi Hendrix, I never got to see him play love to hear Jimi Hendrix play his guitar and also to be able to sit in a small New York jazz club in Harlem and hear Billie Holiday that would be my dream

 

BD: Thank you so much for you time the laughter and sharing making the album like you said the conversation could have gone on a lot longer. With a goodbye, Sari went off for her next demand on her time a radio interview.

Black Betty (Radio Edit: 3:23) Single released Monday 8th August 2016

Taken From the Debut Album

Force Of Nature Sari Schorr Talks to Bluesdoodles

A Force of Nature

Produced by Mike Vernon
Released Friday 2nd September 2016 on Manhaton Records

SARI SCHORR AND THE ENGINE ROOM
2016 UK AND EUROPEAN TOUR DATES

BOOK TICKETS VIA BANDS IN TOWN:
http://bandsintown.com/SariSchorr

 

AUGUST

August 4-5 Notodden Blues Festival Norway
August 26 Norden Farm Centre for the Arts, Altwood Rd, Maidenhead, UK
August 27 Varenwinkel Festival, Herselt, Belgium
August 28 Seacroft Double Festival, Norfolk, UK
August 29 Great British RnB Festival, Colne, Lancashire, UK
August 28 Seacroft Double Festival, Norfolk

SEPTEMBER

Sept 9 Darlington RnB Club, The Forum Music Centre, Darlington, UK
Sept 5 Half Moon Putney, London, UK (Album Launch)
Sept 10 Blues Club, Devizes, Wiltshire, UK
Sept 11 Winchester Discovery Centre, Winchester, UK
Sept 14 The Tunnels, Bristol, UK
Sept 15 Southern Pavilion, Worthing Pier, West Sussex, UK
Sept 16 New Crawdaddy, Billericay Town FC Billericay, UK
Sept 17 Old Town Hall, High Street, Hemel Hempstead, UK
Sept 23 Selby Town Hall Yorkshire, UK
Sept 24 The Iron Road, Evesham, Worcestershire, UK
Sept 25 Hope Tavern, Caistor Rd, Holton-le-Moor, Market Rasen, Lincs, UK
Sept 28 Vonnies Blues Club, Cheltenham
Sept 29 Cranleigh Arts Centre, High Street, Cranleigh, Surrey
Sept 30 B.A.R Festival, France

OCTOBER

October 1 Hereford Blues Club, Booth Hall, Hereford, UK
October 6 Bar Brunel Bridgewater, UK
October 7 Deux Rivieres Blues Festival, Brittany, France

September Sari Schorr A Force Of Nature Releases Debut

September Sari Schorr A Force Of Nature Releases Debut

 

September Sari Schorr A Force Of Nature Releases DebutManhaton Records is pleased to announce the debut album “A Force of Nature” from one of the most exciting Blues rock singers, Sari Schorr. Released in the UK and Europe on Friday 2nd September 2016, the album is produced by the legendary Mike Vernon whose credits include Fleetwood Mac, John Mayall & the Blues Breakers, David Bowie, Savoy Brown, Chicken Shack, Eric Clapton, Peter Green, Christine McVie and Ten Years After.

In January 2015, Mike received a Keeping the Blues Alive award at the prestigious International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee. The award was not the only highlight of the weekend for Mike. The second highlight occurred when Mike witnessed the performance of one of the most amazing female blues singers he’d seen in years – SARI SCHORR.

The album delivers hard-driving Blues-Rock, influenced by the late ’60s British Blues movement.  Sari (who trained as an opera singer) mixes Blues, Rock, and Soul with concrete melodies and poetic lyrics to striking effect.

Mike was so knocked out, he came out of semi-retirement to produce her new album. Already a consummate songwriter in her own right, with tracks on major labels, Sari has written or co-written almost all the songs on the debut album. Released by Manhaton Records (home of Robin Trower and King King) the new album features guitarists Walter Trout (John Mayall, Canned Heat), Innes Sibun (Robert Plant), Oli Brown (RavenEye) and keyboardist John Baggott (Massive Attack, Portishead).

September Sari Schorr A Force Of Nature Releases DebutNew York-based Sari Schorr initially gained prominence throughout the blues world after several years of touring the US and Europe with Blues legend, Joe Louis Walker and renowned guitarist, Popa Chubby. Schorr was recently inducted into the New York Blues Hall of Fame.

“My songs are rooted in the blues and honouring that long tradition is important to me,” reflects Sari. “My song-writing draws heavily on contrasting melodic hooks with aching harmonies. I spend a lot of time working over and rewriting my lyrics. I rely heavily on imagery and enjoy using double-entendres that are entertaining to those who catch them. My influences are many and various and include Son House, Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, Lead Belly, Bessie Smith, Etta James, Ella Fitzgerald, Freddie King, Robert Johnson, B.B. King, Peter Green, Robert Plant, Martha Velez and Bob Dylan.”
 

Stop In The Name Of Love – Sari Schorr

Track from Sari’s new album “A Force Of Nature”
out on August 17th on Manhaton Records

Sari’s new band, The Engine Room, features stunning British guitarist Innes Sibun (former Robert Planet guitarist). “The Engine Room truly is a remarkable band,” says Sari. “Something magical happens when we’re on stage together. We’re fuelled further by the audiences’ reaction and everything’s possible. I love touring and enjoy the privilege of meeting so many like-minded people who share our love of the Blues.”

Sari & The Engine Room certainly delighted the crowds at blues on The Farm 2016 – Read about her performance HERE

SARI SCHORR & THE ENGINE ROOM – “A FORCE OF NATURE”
DEBUT ALBUM OUT SEPTEMBER 2, 2016 – PRODUCED BY MIKE VERNON

FEATURES WALTER TROUT, INNES SIBUN & OLI BROWN
RELEASED ON CD, MASTERED FOR iTUNES DIGITAL & STANDARD DIGITAL DOWNLOAD

 

September Sari Schorr A Force Of Nature Releases Debut

 

 

 

 

Fuelled with Rock RavenEye kicked up a Storm

RavenEye-4722

Fuelled with Rock RavenEye kicked up a Storm

 

 

Reigning Day-4658On a wet Friday night, The Fuel Rock Club was crammed for RavenEye. This is a small rocking venue right in the heart of Cardiff. Opening the evening were Reigning Days, this rocking trio from Devon knew how to excite. It is not surprising that Kerrang have taken to playing their form of Rock. Once again it is rewarding to turn up and when hearing the support band they often surprise. When they are the headliners and others are finding Reigning Days for the first time you will already know the power of the trio’s granite rock.

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With the warm up band raising the temperature everyone was up for RavenEye. The place was already packed and every gap in the room was filled with Oli Brown’s hefty riffs and licks from the guitar of this effervescent performer who walks a very different musical path these days. Tonight were heard the tracks from the E.P. Breaking Out. The power of the rhythm section comprising bassist Aaron Spiers and the drummer with a smile Kev Hickman allows Oli to literally fly. The interplay between the three of them is superb, Oli connecting by standing on the drum kit. Then he is given a piggy back ride by Aaron and storms into the audience. The highlight of the evening though was when Oli ditched his guitar with Aaron’s bass taking the role of a lead guitar full of distortion. The impact of Nobodies Soul was immense and shows the rockers heart that beats inside of Oli and this change in approach through the show ensures wall-to-wall rocking entertainment. Another twist in Oli Brown’s guitar artillery is the one hand playing when singing into the mic and using the mic as a prop on the strings rocking gem of a sound.

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Oli is a talent full of musical intellect, he allows the skills and energy of Aaron and Kev to fly so that the trio connect with the music and more importantly the audience. The whole evening had a fluidity, an impressive set with a feel of spontaneity; rock with freedom of spirit that flies beyond the instruments. The new material was interesting showing the band is developing and the next album should be full of excitement and energy challenged through drum, bass and guitar.

The only thing that let Oli down was the sound that was not good, with lots of feedback. Oli came to the soundman’s rescue by swapping his mic with Aarons, reducing the feedback and helping to lessen the impact. The reality was everyone was there for loud music and fun and RavenEye won many new fans tonight.

Once again live music ruled the day loud, exciting and invigorating as hard as marble and rocking like a sparkling diamond. Thanks for the journey RavenEye.

Read Bluesdoodles review Breaking Out HERE

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RavenEye Set List (to The Best of my Knowledge)

Gonna Take
Get It Started
Come With Me
Smoke
Nobodies Soul
Wanna Feel You
Hate
Oh My Love
Home Sweet Home
Hey Hey Yeah
You Got it
Breaking Out

CD Review: RavenEye ~ Breaking Out

RavenEye - Breaking Out EP artwork

 

RavenEye
Breaking Out
Independent
Release Date 11th May 2015

 

Opening with the title track you hear the RavenEye transformation of Oli Brown.  The guitar playing is still full of passion and style but now has a full-on heavier rock sound that cascades out of the speaker the music really is Breaking Out from any constraining mould.  It is a track that has redefined Oli, a young multi award-winning guitarist known for the blues.  The drumming drives the groove via Kev Hickman’s sticks which when combined with Aaron Spiers bass you get the throbbing backdrop that allows Oli’s vocals to fly to the ceiling so that the sound fills every crevice of the space available.

This is deep down and dirty with enough effects to add interest and another tonal structure but not to destroy the shape of the music and the star of Hey Hey Yeah is Oli’s vocals they fly off the tongue that pulls you into the song and then the little guitar breaks with licks and hooks for the lyrics that make the mouth water with delight, this is a track full of excitement and urgency you just want it to go on and on; but no it stops and there is silence’; until the speaker lights up with the next storming track. Closing with You Got It, the pace slows down but the sound the trio is creating is enough to fill any arena this is a band that are set to create music that brings out the depth and skills of all the instruments. There is a balance and at times less is more as the number of notes are kept simply that is unusually in many a rock number; the tracks are all the better for it as it enables changes of tempo and emphasis mid-track as on You Got It.

If you have heard of Oli Brown, do not expect blues this is rock that has the shadow of blues entwined within its structure but Oli, Kev & Aaron are rocking the cobwebs away with a very stylish vibe. This five-track E.P. makes you want to hear more, now your rock music soul demands to hear more; get that album and keep on touring as RavenEye have encapsulated the live sound in the studio, the raw energy and controlled power combine to produce a classy E.P. we like the new darker Oli and  RavenEye.

If this was a full album would definitely be 10; but this is an E.P. and definitely work in progress of a new band with all the potential to hit the top.

Bluesdoodles gives this CD EIGHT doodle paws out of TEN ….

pawprint half inch

Three Set Wonder @ The Globe, Cardiff

Three Set Wonder @ The Globe, Cardiff
The Pearl HartsRavenEyeBlues Pills

 

On Shakespeare’s birthday in the land of dragons the audience were wowed by a triplet of energetic, stylish and imaginative bands who entertained and delighted the packed house with rock music that sparkled and hit every chord.

Pearl Harts - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0054lThe evening kicked-off with a duo The Pearl Harts, the young women stormed the stage and owned the audience from the first clash of cymbals and guitar chord. The vocals power matched the rock beat as they harmonized and developed each and every track they played. They create a wonderful rock sound full of depth and contours of sounds some as heavy as gooey chocolate cakes then little bubbles of sound as light as a Victoria sponge this is sweet rock that has a mean edge delivered with confidence by Kirsty (lead vocals /Pearl Harts - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0038l Guitar / Loops) and Sara (drums / vocals/ samples). Tonight was an opportunity to introduce the band to Wales, with Wolf Eyes full of strength, and the opportunity to showcase their single Skeleton Made of Diamonds; there being a deep blues-style riff, which underpins the robust drumming and the harmonization that blends and shapes the lyrics that are about potency in the face of hardship. This is a duo with their mix of traditional instruments with modern gadgets melding together they should be a big noise on the scene Sara & Kirsty definitely deserve it.

RavenEye - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0034lPhew – as we drew breath and the stage was re-organised for RavenEye, there was a lot of positive chatter about the opening act as the crowd swelled waiting for the main act. The atmosphere was hot and eager to be entertained while the impatience for the main act grew. RavenEye a new band that has Oli Brown, known for the blues but can rock his Hofner guitar now joined with Kev Hickman authoritative drummer and Aaron Spiers the energetic bass player, these are the musicians can they deliver? Yes they did they can rock any audience with a unique style that delivers every note and vocal with clarity.

RavenEye - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0059lRavenEye delivered a rousing entrance, and the blues award-winning guitarist has evolved into a mighty rock guitarist with real stage presence and his voice now has a rougher rockstar edge. His blues roots shone out with his thumb pick, Kappa and style of guitar one in black the other graphite grey and he made them squeal with the delight of performing live to an appreciative audience capturing the heart of the blues deep within a rocky shell. The rhythm section was strong, they needed to be as Oli the consummate showman was bouncing around the stage and if they wanted attention they had to stamp their musical mark; and they did. The set was a perfect mix of tempos incorporating tracks from their debut E.P.; including the single and title track Breaking Out. (Release Date 11th May)

RavenEye - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0156lThe music is gritty as they grind out a hefty full on rock beat and the tone is fattened out by Oli’s signature thumb pick. Oli charmed the audience with his vocals and rapport as he shared the audience with the bouncing throng happy to return the vocal back to Oli. Aaron on bass was full of energy and interacted with Oli and added another layer of tonal depth and energy the two up front were zinging; not to be left out Kev at the back twirled his sticks, and used two different stick forms making the drums sharp and muffled, at times they danced with a fluidity and then they were used with military precision to march out a beat. RavenEye are a trio full of power, the power to rock and delight an audience, they made many new fans and were seen by others as sharing the bill with Blues Pills.

Blues Pills - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0056lTonight Blues Pills hit Cardiff, the second night of their U.K. leg of their 2015 Rock Revelation Tour; the venue was warmed up following the two fabulous opening bands.
The stage was set for the act the drummer; André Kvarnströmoff centre stage, Zack Anderson on bass stage left and on the far right guitarist Dorian Sorriaux and the centre stage and a large space behind for Elin Larsson vocalist and dancer of the this dynamic American – Swedish – French quartet.
The audience now congregating around the stage were diverse, young and older, hippy and rocker as the mood and atmosphere took a step back in time to the early 1970’s; it was the setting of the stage, orange amplification and the music being delivered, that said this was a modern sound a blending of retro and now that really worked.

Elin up front danced and spun bare footed and delivered vocals full of gritty passion a blending of mainly herself; a hint of Janice Joplin and Stevie Nixs swirling dance without the shawls, using every available space on the stage and caressing the Blues Pills - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0084lmicrophone and using the stand as a prop the crowd went wild. The tempo was at times frenetic, vocals leading the music then the stylish guitar solo’s from Dorian and then it was time for the rhythm section to shine in the sun. Dig In was a slower number adding a beat that drove through the audience thanks to the bass and drums. The dancing was wild the audiences hair flew back and forth as they were absorbed into the musical contours that are Blues Pills. There was the magic of four musicians who understand each other’s talents and wanted to celebrate in a collective delivery of a sound that is simply Blues Pills. The music at times shimmered with forgotten memories and a riff here and a mixing of notes there as the sound of Black Sabbath, Free and Led Zeppelin were hinted at and then back to the core that is their own due to the deliver and the understanding that you need to add space between the high-octane, high-volume rock being delivered. Blues Pills - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0117lAndré’s drumming was precise but never boring always on the beat with the swishing of an extra cymbal crescendo allowing the beat to cascade like a waterfall across the stage and embedded in to the fabric of the venue. Whilst Zack on bass was full of deep notes that added a dark tone ensuring the music was never rocky froth around the vocals of Elin but grounded into the very roots of primitive rhythm. The partnership between Elin on vocals and Dorian was interesting to watch and hear as she sang lyrics that Blues Pills - The Globe -   Apr 2015- _0104lendured and mesmerised, as she drew breath and danced Dorian took over with solos and lead breaks that were complex but never cluttered no extra notes were ever squeezed into any phrasing and then joining him is a swooping of Elin as the song gains energy and the music becomes all-encompassing.

Wales was delighted to welcome Blues Pills on their first gig in the nation and we want them back very soon; delivering a special musical pharmacy of shapes, there are so many influences deep dark blues, rock, psychedelic rock and even jazz; delivered at high volume delivered with energetic pizzazz.

This trio of Rock are on tour check out dates and venues HERE
 

 

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