Most of us like to find new music to listen to. However, with the conservative nature of radio, the vastness of the internet and the normal time constraints of a busy schedule, make it difficult to discover new music.
To those who read this that are part of the music business, this blog may seem like old hat. For the rest of you, here are some less well-known artists that will tempt you to not play your old favorites from Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Brett Dennen-Brett is a 32 year-old singer/songwriter from Northern California. He does not play this area of the country very often and I have yet to see him. He writes some great songs. “”Ain’t No Reason” is one of them. This performance was live on KINK-FM in Portland.
The next artist is particularly special to me. She is my client and her name is Megan McCormick. I found Megan in Nashville about four years ago and thou I had promised myself never to sign any more unsigned artists, she was just too amazing for me to ignore. She is uniquely talented. Take a piece of Bonnie Raitt, a dose of Stevie Ray Vaughan and a sampling of the indie band Beach House and you have Megan. An amazing songwriter, with guitar chops like no other woman I have ever seen and an amazing voice. That is Megan. She has released one full album and an EP to date. Unfortunately her label was not able to support her financially and the album did not fare well. That did not prevent it from being a terrific album. We are in the process of gathering new material and getting ready to record a new project. Here is a live stripped down version of “Shiver” from her first album “Honest Words”, recorded in Atlantic Studios.
The next two artists are not superstars, though they should be. Ed Sheeran is a legitimate star in England. He has yet to penetrate the U.S. market and I really don’t know why. Last year he won two Brit Awards, Best Brit Male Solo and British Breakthrough artist. He is just 21 and is truly amazing. The official video of his biggest hit “The A Team” has been viewed over 48 million times. Here is an acoustic clip from a studio in Chicago that is terrific. He is playing Radio City on January 13.
If life were fair, Amos Lee would be a superstar. He has not had the benefit of airplay on pop or rock radio in the States. He has a fairly big following, but not one commensurate with an artist of his talent. You may know one of his songs “Sweet Pea” from an American Airlines commercial that ran for about a year. Amos is 35 and has opened for folks like Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello, Van Morrison, Paul Simon and Dave Matthews Band. Last year his latest album release debuted at #1 with over 40,000 units sold. Hopefully one day he will sell 10 times that many. Here are a couple of clips from Amos. First is one of his earlier songs called “Keep It Tight” recorded five years ago.
The last clip from Amos is “Windows Rolled Down” performed live on “Ellen” about two years ago. Hopefully 2013 will be a huge step forward for Amos.
Ryan Montbleau is from Peabody, Mass and has released 8 projects to date. My daughter Julia introduced me to his music. It is a unique blend of pop/swing and alt/folk. He has been around for awhile and still has yet to get much traction. He is worth spending some time with. Here is a song called “I Can’t Wait” recorded live in 2009.
I hope you find somebody new to listen to. There are a bunch more great new artists that I will feature in a later blog or two.