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Witch Cross • BC Sweet • Gonads • Christie

Blue Odyssey Sampler

Guitar not to scale........

As the recording of “Blue Odyssey” continues apace, I thought it was about time I gave everyone a ‘sneak peek’ at what I have been up to, so I’ve put together a small sampler, giving a taste of seven of the songs that will eventually appear on the album. They are in no particular order, and in some cases aren’t perhaps the definitive mix, but I think they give an idea of the cross-section of influences I’ve drawn on for the project.  The tracks are as follows:

1 Parrot Beach Cafe – a song about a real venue that Miki and I visited in North Little Rock, Arkansas. Two of the musicians who regularly play there are featured on the track, Gil Franklin on slide guitar and Patrick ‘Jawbone’ Kenyon on blues harp.

2 Pass the Biscuits – a song about the legendary King Biscuit Time and its presenter ‘Sunshine’ Sonny Payne. broadcasting out of Helena, Arkansas, Sonny also appears on the full version of this track, and the drums are by Stef Cybichowksi.

3 Never get to Nashville – this song tells the story of our eventual journey to America, in Nashville style, of course! the full version will feature Shelley House of Atlanta on fiddle, and as a Delta airlines hostess!

4 A Mississippi Prayer – simply inspired by our time in the delta, absorbing the rich musical heritage, we couldn’t fail to be touched by it.

5 What a Night it Was – a strange tale….influenced by the night we got back to our hotel in Austin, Texas, to find that the whole area had been cordoned off by the Police, and the forensic teams were out in force.

6 A Cellarful of Dreams – This was a side of Nashville I hadn’t expected – an alternative scene, very vibrant and encapsulated by the Tuesday nights at The Basement. Great music, great memories. The song in full runs through several different styles, mirroring the diversity of the acts on stage.

7 Buttermilk Boogie – A bit of fun, inspired by my love of the Waffle House chain! I hope to submit the finished version to the company, so it may feature on the jukeboxes in each of their restaurants.

So, click on the player below to get a little taste of my forthcoming album!

Kev Moore

July 3, 2010 Posted by | Blue Odyssey CD, blues, Home Studio, Music, Recording, Rock, Writing | , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Blue Odyssey update

The Author relaxing at the bar of the soon-to-be-immortalized "Parrot beach cafe"!

Well, the new solo CD project is well underway, with ‘sketches’ taking shape of around 5 songs so far, including ‘Never get to Nashville’, ‘A Cellarful of Dreams’, ‘The Mississippi Prayer’, ‘Buttermilk Boogie’, ‘The Ghost of Bessie Smith’ and ‘Parrot Beach Cafe’.

Gil Franklin (foreground) with the Port Arthur Band



With regard to Parrot Beach cafe, I’m delighted to announce that Jawbone and Gil Franklin will be contributing their own special brand of Arkansas blues to the track!  Having witnessed their playing first hand, on blues harp and guitar respectively, at the cafe in the title of the track,  I’m over the moon to have the chance for them to sprinkle a little ‘magic dust’ on my album, giving it an authentic local flavour!

Kev Moore

March 12, 2010 Posted by | Blue Odyssey CD, blues, Home Studio, Music, Recording, Rock, Touring, Writing | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Parrot Beach Cafe – My new local!

The Parrot welcomes you.....

Miki and I searched the  newspapers and the internet looking for somewhere serving up good music on Saturday and discovered a place North of the river and West of Little Rock called The Parrot Beach Cafe.  It advertised a Hope for Haiti benefit concert, raising money for Doctors without Borders, with a number of bands  performing, starting at 3 pm.

Parking at the Parrot Beach cafe is creative....

When we finally found the place, it didn’t look like much was going on, and although it was 3 o’clock, it didn’t look like anyone would be playing anytime soon.  But we were assured music would start around 4, and we left, promising to return later. I’m glad we did.  

The five and a half hours following our return at 5pm were filled with great, honest and expertly delivered music from a variety of local performers, including “MC by default” Jawbone, who, as his name might suggest, plays a mean blues harp, and is possessed of a gravel rasp voice that delivers the songs in some style. His first set was with his wife Jolene accompanying him on guitar. Next on stage was The Swamp Donkey. He attacked his old National with a slide and a mean sense of humour delivering a great songs, abetted towards the end of his set by Jawbone.  These guys were keeping it real. 

Jawbone and Swamp makin' it happen

A mention must also got to Vanessa and the staff at Parrot Beach. She had cooked up a great bowl of chilli and was giving out chilli dogs for all, not to mention hot popcorn.  Not the biggest drinkers, we were installed at the bar alternating between endless cups of coffee and iced glasses of bud light. I guess we were the only non-locals there, but by the end of the night, we felt like we belonged, their hospitality was fantastic.  A band featuring guitarist Gil Franklin took to the stage next, initially  sporting the most beatifully aged Gibson 335 I’ve ever seen, but when he put his Strat through a Peavey Classic combo, he had a tone to die for.   He sang a mean blues too, and I was pleased when he later got up with the Port Arthur Band – the house band at Parrot beach, for their set which followed. A special mention must also go to the drummer, who, dressed in a Led Zep ’71 tour shirt, played the kit in a distinctive and highly watchable style, totally into the gig, and right on the money.

Port Arthur Band, with (far left) Gil Franklin

The closing act was Big Red and the Soul Benders, as defined by their Big, red-haired singer. Their bass player kept the theme going , dressed head to toe in a bright red zoot suit, complete with red hat.  He also played a graphite grey Fender precision lyte bass, which gave me pangs of regret for the identical one I’d had stolen many years before! Big Red herself was possessed of consummate professionalism, and more importantly, a helluva voice. Backed by a solid band, and once again Jawbone on blues harp, she was a fine closer for the show. At least, I think she closed the show, but we were flagging and left before the end, but it was no reflection on the performance.  My guess is they jammed on into the night.  We were so pleased to have happened upon this great venue full of warm, music-loving, generous people, who in the process of having a damn good time raised a very worthy sum for their cause.

Big Red and the Soul Benders giving it large

The House band appear there every Thursday. If you ever have the good fortune to be in Little Rock, get yourself across the Arkansas river, head North on MacArthur, and prepare to be entertained.

Links you might enjoy:  Parrot Beach Cafe

                                                  Port Arthur Band

                                                  Big Red

                                                  Jawbone & Jolene

Parrot Beach Cafe - House Rules

Kev Moore

February 28, 2010 Posted by | Music, Rock, Writing | , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

All that Jazz – The After Thought in Little Rock, Arkansas

Before the show at The After Thought

Despite a long drive from Texarkana, Miki and I were ready to venture into the town of Little Rock on Monday night in search of music. We found it at The After Thought, a modern, yet inviting bar on the outskirts, serving great value draft beer and boasting a house quartet well-versed in modern jazz.

I’d decided to wear my New Orleans Saints shirt that night, so you can imagine my delight when we discovered that the backdrop to the stage was a giant mural depicting Bourbon Street in our favourite city!  Now, Modern Jazz is not normally my music of choice, but I nevertheless welcomed the chance to hear it played live, and well – and with the band hosting a handful of impromptu appearances from other local musicians, it was a treat.  A local music professor got up and gave a great rendition of Ramsey Lewis’ classic The In Crowd.

Kev giving it large.....

Resisting my “busman’s holiday” trait no longer, I opted to sing Someone to watch over me, a classic performed by artists as diverse as Tony Bennet, Ella Fitzgerald and Elton John, and accompanied expertly by their pianist I delivered it as best I could!

The audience seemed to receive it well, and I sat down to enjoy some virtuoso (to my untrained jazz ears, at least!)  solo trombone from another musical member of the audience. All in all, it was a nice, easy intro to the Little Rock music scene, and set us up nicely for the coming week.

Lettin' it slide.....

                                                                   Kev Moore

February 25, 2010 Posted by | Jazz Rock, Music, Touring, Writing | , , , , , , | 1 Comment