Finding Socks in the Ocean

Yeah, the title of this post is weird, but I promise it relates to today's music selections.

My goal is to be more consistent in sharing music that speaks to me. Both new voices and old, with a focus on bringing a few more years to music that I feel deserves a larger audience than it currently enjoys.

I hope you will continue to stop in and give a listen to the stuff I spot or as always you can follow the Official "The Feels" playlist on Spotify.

Please remember Spotify does not generate enough revenue for artists to continue living and thriving on the road so please attend live shows, buy merch, and of course the music that speaks to you.

Here are a few tracks for you to check out today. The first new are new releases and the third is a classic go to for me. All three carry more than a hint of melancholy to them and two of the three are true road songs.

Elijah Ocean -- The Places We Came From

Bart Budwig -- Sock Song

Ben Bullington -- Ain't Found It Yet

Ben Bullingt…

10 Best Country/Americana Albums (with a splash of Folk)

Come all ye faithful, for it ‘tis that time of year where “Best Of” lists are plentiful as curbside bell ringers. 
I won’t HO HO HO you, asking for a donation, but I do hope you will take a moment to read this list of my personal favorite albums of 2019.
I also won’t pretend my tastes do not run to the raw and vulnerable over the glossy and upbeat. The order was even tougher to settle upon than narrowing the best albums list down to ten, because like all good art, these songs hit me differently at varying times. Nevertheless, they spoke to me with each and every listen.
The List
10)Ordinary Elephant – Honest (May 2019 Berkalin Records) Despite their name, this husband and wife team possesses extraordinary talent. With hints of Guy Clark lyrically and vocals that often made me think of Gillian Welch, the tracks on Honest are often hauntingly beautiful “Scars We Keep” was the first song to catch my attention.

9)Sarah Potenza – Road To Rome (March 2019 Indie) It’s tricky to try and pigeonhol…

Listen Up!

One of my writing gigs is reviewing music for the LA on Lock music blog and while some of the tunes I hear in their name are not right for that blog's audience, they are still worthy of a large partnership. Here are a few of those for y'all to check out.

Everyone of these comes with a slightly different sound, but each spoke to me. Hope they do the same for you.

Camille Miller is German born and raised in Canada. This particular song borders on pop and Americana but much of her work leans to a more folk sound.

Berith This single feels like old school Kenny Rogers for the first few measures and it carries that 70 country vibe. Berith is Norwegian and her voice hints at that accent to give it a nice complexity.

V Blackburn V is a track on an EP titled Public Figures and every other song is a fresh take on a celebrity. She has a big voice and a unique approach to songwriting but this song spoke to me lyrically. Sad and hopeful at the same time.

Leeroy Stagger another Canadian offerin…

Recent Finds

There are not enough hours in the day to research and write up everything I would like to post so this entry is basically a song dump for things I think more people need to hear with only a brief comment for each.

Every song noted here can be found on The Feels Official Spotify Playlist which changes and evolves weekly so follow along to discover new stuff all the time.

Where I could, I posted video within the post.

A Few Bad Men - "A Haunted Man" the title track from a new EP. Think Tom Waits meets Jesse Dayton.

Speaking of Jesse Dayton. This bad ass guitar man has played for and with too many musical legends for me to list here and if ever you get the chance his live set is a must see. August 9th his album Mix Tapes Volume 1 will drop with an array of offerings covering some of his personal favorites and influences. Including his cover of The Clash's "Bankrobber" which is already out.

And speaking of Tom Waits ...

Ok, so that one isn't exactly new but stil…

Sam Outlaw - Hat Acts [EP Review]

I was bummed to learn Sam Outlaw recently moved from LA to Nashville. This dismay is multifaceted. The West Coast is lacking in traditional country voices, Nashville has corrupted the sound of more than one artist, and I like the fact Outlaw writes songs about things beyond the country norm. Such as this one from his 2017 album Tenderheart ...

But I get it. Artists have to chase the dream and yes, Tennessee is rife with song factories pumping out Bro-Country pablum to the masses, but it is also home to John Prine, Jack White, Jason Isbell, Sheryl Crow and countless others creating genuine music across many genres.

I hope Outlaw doesn't get swayed by the execs sitting behind the desks. Now on to a closer look at this new EP.

Billed as a six track EP, we are actually looking at a trio of songs with introductory skit before each. But hey, the complete package is clever and funny, though tough to discern the dialogue.

The premise is a night out for a cowboy, looking for love as Johnny…

Cell Block - Songwriting in The Age of The Smartphone

As a fiction writer, I have a love/hate relationship with my smart phone. The power of research is amazing, and I can't tell you how many times I have instantly looked up the info I needed. I can check out a street view to see exactly what my character would be seeing, or order sustenance to keep me hammering at the keyboard all from the same device. These are great things.

But man, what a pain in the ass it is for my characters to have these same conveniences.

No longer can I reliably have characters cut off from contact or rescue, or struggle for answers that are only a Google search away.

Cell phones suck for fiction writers, and songwriters face the same dilemma. Think of all the classic songs that could never be written today.

Sylvia's Mother - Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show
Sylvia's mother would not have been involved at all, if little Miss Sylvia had her own damn phone. And in this day and age, our suitor would have his own cell phone as well, so we&#…

Sean McConnell [Concert Review] - Secondhand Smoke [Album Review]