Archive for Benmont Tench

Review: Rockin’ the Weekend!

Posted in Review with tags , , , , on June 11, 2010 by 30daysout

Don’t know about where you live, but in our neck of the woods summer’s here and it’s hot.  Best thing to do on the weekend is hit the pool or lounge on the patio, pop the top on a cold one and put on a few fresh hot platters.

Grace Potter and the Nocturnals are a Vermont-based band that’s been knocking around for a few years.  Their newest, simply titled Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, is a good calling card for those unfamiliar with the band’s take on 1970s style rock, soul, blues and country.  The most arresting thing about the band is the frontwoman’s astounding voice – she can rock out in front of a guitar storm on “Paris” or “Medicine,” then she can credibly pull off pop gems like “Goodbye Kiss” or the Fleetwood-Mac flavored “Tiny Light.”  Potter even strikes a perfect singer/songwriter pose on the gentle anthem “Colors.”  This is a perfect summer record, with a great band playing behind an excellent singer in a style you thought you’d never hear again.

MP3: “Tiny Light” by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals

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Lost Classics! Lone Justice/Maria McKee

Posted in Lost Classics! with tags , , , , , , on April 30, 2009 by 30daysout

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In the 1980s, Los Angeles was the birthplace of a curious genre called cowpunk, a mashup of punk rock with roots music.  Among the more famous practitioners were the Beat Farmers, the Blasters, Los Lobos, Green on Red and of course, Lone Justice. 

Lone Justice came together in 1982 under the guidance of guitarist Ryan Hedgecock and singer Maria McKee, an L.A. singer whose half brother was Bryan McLean from the psychedelic band Love.  In their early days, Lone Justice was a hot band in the L.A. area – thanks in part to having famous champions and fans like Linda Ronstadt and Benmont Tench, Tom Petty’s keyboardist and Maria McKee’s boyfriend.

Geffen Records put out Lone Justice’s self-titled debut album in 1985 and although a few songs (most notably the Tom Petty-penned “Ways To Be Wicked”) got radio airplay, the album didn’t sell as well as everyone hoped it would.  Maybe Lone Justice wasn’t really a true cowpunk band – the first album showed evidence of ambition beyond the boundaries of the genre.  To my ears, Lone Justice sounded more like a California-style U2 rather than the other bolo tie bands that were out at the time.

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