Savannah is certainly an eclectic town, and nowhere is that more apparent than in the diverse, thriving music scene that calls the city home. From bluegrass to hip hop, there is something for every music taste to be found here, and South wants you to experience it all. Specially marked copies of this month’s The South magazine contains our first ever Sounds of the South compilation CD, a limited-edition disc featuring 13 of the most notable and popular bands who call (or have called) Savannah home.
The collection starts with “Spilt Milk,” a track from Savannah-raised Kristina Train, a singer/songwriter/violinist with a gorgeous, soulful voice. Train, now residing in New York, signed with the prestigious Blue Note Records label almost eight years ago. Luckily for us, she has finally released her debut album, Spilt Milk, which the Boston Herald has called “timeless music, recorded beautifully and sung perfectly.” She will be returning to her hometown for the 2010 Savannah Music Festival.
In stark contrast to Train’s mellow, bluesy sound, the next track is “Swollen and Halo,” from progressive metal band Baroness. While Savannah is their home base, the band tours internationally, receiving widespread attention for what has been described as “complex, technical arrangements and densely layered walls of distorted guitars.”
Former Berklee School of Music instructor Bobby Lee Rodgers uses his many years of collaborations with rock, blues, funk, soul, jazz, and bluegrass musicians as inspiration to create a genre-defying sound in “Overdrive”, while the Eric Culberson Blues Band brings some bluesy Southern rock grit to the mix with “The Catch”.
Savannah natives Listen 2 Three provide some pop sensibility with their radio-friendly brand of R&B influenced pop rock. The trio’s tight vocal harmonies and songs about love and loss evoke a strong John Mayer vibe, and their catchy tunes have caught the attention of industry executives. The track “Goodnight Baby” is off their recently released debut album, Play It By Ear.
Matt Wesley’s track, “Out Her Window,” is a melancholy, bluesy pop gem, followed by The Jimmy Wolling Band’s “Peacock Strut.” Featuring banjo, guitar, bass, mandolin and fiddle, this band can nail Bluegrass standards as well as “Cosmic American alt-country and improv- heavy jam-grass.” Comprised of members from a variety of successful local bands, Superhorse draws sold-out crowds to their occasional live shows. Their track “Revolution Mutha” shows the influence of The Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth and the Ramones.
Local legend Ben Tucker lends his jazz stylings to the CD with “Comin’ Home Baby.” The Savannah Music Festival will celebrate Ben’s 80th birthday by hosting a show in his honor. Hip hop collective Dope Sandwich, six Savannah MCs, are enjoying growing national presence after several DIY releases and high-profile local shows. Their thoughtful, creative music is exemplified by the track “Savannah Streets.” Fans of underground music will definitely want to catch these up-and-comers at The Jinx.
Energetic Americana band The Train Wrecks specialize in twangy, country rock odes to risk takers and ne’er do wells, and their track, “She Was The One” does not disappoint. Greg Williams, a veteran of famous singer/songwriter havens like Nashville’s The Bluebird Café, shows off his vocal gifts and poetic lyrics with his song “Now That You Know.” Finishing the compilation off in style, regional road band Turtle Folk rock out with their Southern rock and jam-band inspired “Simple Crime.”
No matter what your musical leanings, the talented musicians on Sounds of the South are sure to get your toes tapping. The CD is available at AMR Music in Savannah.
Tags: Entertainment, Music, Music Blog, southern music, the south magazine