Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde
The thing I love about music is how it is ever evolving. And just like the world of music, so is this column. I had two other columns written and ready to go. But then I deleted them. They just didn’t feel like me. They felt forced. My number one rule in life is to keep it real. I loathe pretentious music as much as I loathe pretentious writers.
So rather than try to come up with something quippy and overly clever, I am just going to write about the songs I find and let you know why I think they are worthy of your time.
Speaking of evolving, when I started this column, I was focused on finding new albums. Now I have shifted my focus and I am now hunting for new, outstanding singles. Variety is the spice of life and I have enjoyed my musical travels much more since I have shifted my focus.
So let’s get on with the jams, shall we?
Jam: “What Were You Hoping To Find?”
In A Word: Positive
The thing I can always count on from Vistas is to be a (musical) ray of sunshine. Maybe it is due to the band being from Scotland, which I have always considered to be a rather happy country.
Prentice Robertson’s vocals are completely infectious. While the world burns down around me, I will use “What Were You Hoping To Find?” as my escape pod into Happyville.
Artist: Cocktail Slippers
Jam: “Night Train”
In A Word: Fun
Let’s head on over to Oslo, Norway to meet the Cocktail Slippers. This talented band is all about having a good time. With band member names like Sugar, Vega, Rocket Queen, Miss-A-OK, and Hope, how could they not be about having a good time? The fun, flirty rhythms and rock edge is perfect to get me in the mood to deal with any sort of shenanigans.
Artist: Arrows In Action
Jam: “Uncomfortably Numb” (ft. Taylor Acorn)
In A Word: Unexpected
Victor Viramontes-Pattison’s vocals are haunting. While he and Taylor Acorn turn in fantastic vocal performances, it is the band’s unexpected heavy vibe that impressed me the most. I love when a band can surprise this jaded music snob. This is a band to watch. Arrows In Action would be an excellent opening act for Blue October.
Artist: Carly Pearce, Ashley McBryde
Jam: “Never Wanted To Be That Girl”
In A Word: Compassionate
While country music is full of cheating songs, it is rare that you can see it from the side of both women involved. Both Pearce and McBryde do an excellent job in telling their tale about how they never wanted to be that girl. Men may be trash, but then again if they weren’t we wouldn’t have fantastic songs like this. This track is on the same level as “Does He Love You” by Reba McEntire and Linda Davis.
Artist: Southern Avenue
In A Word: Soulful
While I am a rock guy at heart, it is bands like Southern Avenue that completely melt my heart. The bluesy, soulful vibe of “Control” is the definition of “keeping it real.” Tierinii Jackson is a goddess who touches something deep in my soul. Top that off with Ori Naftaly’s phenomenal guitar riffs and Tikyra Jackson’s phenomenal drumming and Southern Avenue checks off all the boxes for me, musically.
Well kids, I am back off on my travels. I hope you have a lovely holiday season and remember – be nice to one another. You can hear these songs and more in my curated playlist, “K-JIM 2021,” by clicking this link.
You can follow me on Twitter @TheFoundFive. Don’t be a stranger.｜Jim Ryan