Sunday, January 26, 2014

Jeremiah Freed

Good Sunday evening my fellow indie music lovers! I trust that your weekend has been full of health, happiness and indie tunes... just as it should be!

I'm glad you've checked in tonight because we're going to take a trip back in time to 2002. I hope that the band name in the title will be somewhat familiar to some of you.

Jeremiah Freed was a five piece band from York, Maine, USA. Formed during their sophomore year in high school, the band, made up of Joseph Smith, vocals; Kerry Ryan, drums; Nick Goodale, guitar; Jake Roche, guitar and Matt Cosby, bass, signed a major record label deal with Republic/Universal Records not long after graduating high school together in 2000. They released their debut self-titled album, Jeremiah Freed, on March 26, 2002, and immediately began burning up the alternative rock scene with their debut single Again.

I remember when this band first hit the scene. I was living in Dallas at the time and Again was on heavy rotation on the local alt/rock station. I couldn't find this cd fast enough after the first time I heard it. I remembered thinking, "Damn, this band really has that 'it' factor going for them." I was sure this band was going to be around for a while.

Fast forward now to 2011. I've all but given up on mainstream radio and have already embarked on my journey of indie music discovery. I run across this local band who, regular readers of this blog will recognize as my all-time favorite band, Lit on the Flash. Over the course of the next year and half, I follow this band all over Maine and New Hampshire. In the process, I become good friends with... you guessed it, two members (Jake and Kerry) of Jeremiah Freed! Talk about a small world, huh? It was one night after a LOTF show in Dover, New Hampshire that front-man Jake Roche first told me the story of Jeremiah Freed's rise and fall in the music industry. Long story short, it turns out the contract Jeremiah Freed signed with Republic/Universal was a move the label made to keep them from going head-to-head on the mainstream charts with another alt/rock band out of Mississippi (who coincidentally are still making the rounds on your radio... I won't name them here, but you might be able to put two and two together to figure out who they are) that they had also just signed and began promoting. The label effectively shelved Jeremiah Freed to the point that their future success on mainstream radio was kaboshed!

Suffice it to say, hearing this story only fueled my passion for the indie artists that I'd come to know and love. That's where the foundation for what this blog would become to be was first laid (thanks Mo for the nudge to become a blogger!).

So the other day, I got an email from Jake that contained a link to an archive of a show Jeremiah Freed played in Portland, Maine at the WCYY Holiday Bizarre in December of 2002. This was right after the band was let out of their contract with Republic/Universal. Not long before this show took place, the band released a 5-song EP titled Times Don't Change (which is what I'm rocking to as I type these words). While I never got the chance to see them live, this recording is a pretty good example of how big this band was at the time. The crowd for this show was amped and they rocked the hell out of the State Theater because of it. Track 7 on the playlist, Impromptu Jam, was exactly that. The band had an impromptu jam session because Nick Goodale's amp caught fire after they ripped through Again! Luckily, he had a spare head to swap out on the amp, so the jam filled the time quite nicely!

The band carried on and released one more album independently, Slowburn, which in my opinion, was their best release. It's hard to come by a finer example of blues/rock anywhere. It wasn't long after that the band went their separate ways and the rest of their stories are written in indie lore.

Download music by Jeremiah Freed on Amazon 

Download music by Jeremiah Freed on iTunes 

Support unsigned artists... give indie music a chance.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Ghost of Paul Revere- Believe

As a fan blogger of indie music, I often rely on the artists themselves for recommendations on the artists that they know and listen to. This is one of those occasions.

I was familiar with the Ghost of Paul Revere in name only up until just a few months ago. I don't remember which one it was, but Chris Viner or Sasha Alcott from When Particles Collide posted a link to a Pledge Music campaign for a local Maine indie band. That was the moment that I was hooked on this band!

Fast forward now to January 14, 2014, and the guys have released their first full length album, Believe, with the help of their fans thanks to that successful Pledge Music campaign!

Portland, Maine, USA, based Ghost of Paul Revere is made up of Griffin Sherry, guitar/vocals; Mark Davis, banjo/vocals; Sean McCarthy, bass/vocals and Matt Young, mandolin/harmonica. Something that sets this band apart is the fact that Griffin, Davis & McCarthy share lead vocal duties. This makes for an eclectic blend of harmonizing that combines Americana, folk, bluegrass, country and rock elements nicely.

I never knew I was a fan of holler-roots, but after nearly 2 full days of Believe on repeat on my iPod, I do believe I love what I hear!

As I've come to immerse myself in the local indie music scene in Maine, from Bangor to Portland and most points in between, one name keeps coming up from people I meet- The Ghost of Paul Revere. I keep hearing that this is one live show that I won't soon forget. It sounds like their cd release party in February may be the place to find out first-hand!

Head over to iTunes now and download your copy of Believe. While you're there, grab a copy of their debut EP North.

Download Believe on iTunes

Ghost of Paul Revere official website

Follow Ghost of Paul Revere on Twitter

Like Ghost of Paul Revere on Facebook

Believe in the Ghost of Paul Revere. I do.

Support unsigned artists... give indie music a chance.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Ryan Star A N G E L S + A N I M A L S

It goes without saying that today has been an incredible day in the world of music. At the stroke of midnight, Ryan Star made thousands upon thousands of #RStarArmy members the proudest of him that I think we've ever been!

Today is the release of the long awaited follow-up to 11:59, Mr. Star's 2010 major record label debut.

Today is the release of A N G E L S + A N I M A L S, the long overdue return of Ryan Star to his indie artist roots!

It's not every day that a major label artist decides to walk away from a contract when he/she is on the verge of their "breakthrough" with the mainstream radio audience. The end of 2012 saw Mr. Star switch record labels, give us one of his most passionate records to date, Stay Awhile, then enter 2013 with the realization that his new label wanted a product that he wasn't willing to give them or his fans.

This, ladies and gentlemen, and fellow lovers of all things indie, is what Island Records missed out on.

THIS is A N G E L S + A N I M A L S!

It says more about the artist and what's important to him than what we may have ever given him credit for. Sure, we all knew the passion was there in his previous recordings. Now we get a taste of his character. A N G E L S + A N I M A L S is what you get when an artist is unwilling to compromise his craft to conform to some standard set by someone that just doesn't get it. Mr. Star was willing to step outside of the box and reach out to his fans for help with getting this album released. One of the most successful crowd funded campaigns that I have had the pleasure to be a part of helped get this album in all its glory to you, the fans, as only Ryan Star could deliver it!

Now it's up to us to spread the word and get this album out to as many people as we possibly can. Head over to iTunes now to download your copy and spread the word. It's time for the fans to help take the music back from the corporate suits and put it back in the hands of those who truly know what we want.

Download A N G E L S + A N I M A L S on iTunes

Follow Ryan Star on Twitter

Support unsigned artists... give indie music a chance.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Leona's Sister

Happy New Year everyone, and welcome back to another year of indie music discovery here at MY Indie Music Blog!

My absolute favorite part of being a indie music fan/blogger is the artists themselves who reach out to me via Twitter. I'm approached on a near daily basis by artists looking to submit music to me for a spot on this blog. As I've told each of them, there is no need to send me anything. They've taken the first step, which is following me. As long as they have music streaming online, I'll take a listen. If I like a track, I pay it back (thanks for the line @limey59) and buy what I can where I can. And if I REALLY like what I hear, they eventually end up right here for all of you to hear. In 2013 alone, I added albums and tracks from 410 indie artists totaling 3047 tracks! My iPod has never been happier!

So it is without further ado that I bring to you, my faithful readers and fellow lovers of all things indie, one of those artists I added to my playlist in 2013, Leona's Sister!

Leona's Sister is made up of Joyce "JT" Twohig, vocals/guitar; Len O'Sullivan, guitar; Dave Hanson, guitar/vocals; Barry Twohig, bass/vocals and Barb Piatowski, drums. This Toronto, Ontario, Canada based quintet have dominated the local ReverbNation charts for Toronto for for the better part of a year and half (since October 2012). One listen and it's easy to hear why. Equal parts rock and soul lend to a heavy retro sound that's been missing from mainstream radio for far too long.

After listening to that, I can't think of a more compelling argument for bringing back rock n roll to mainstream radio... and bring it back in a BIG way! I have a feeling that 2014 is going to be a huge year for Leona's Sister. And I can't wait for all of us to be along for the ride!

Official Leona's Sister website

Follow Leona's Sister on Twitter

Like Leona's Sister on Facebook

Leona's Sister on ReverbNation

Download music by Leona's Sister on iTunes

Now get out there and show Leona's Sister some love like only you can!

Support unsigned artists... give indie music a chance.