• West Coast Music

    As the name indicates West Coast Music has its origin on the American West Coast. The music emphasizes melody, harmonies and arrangements, and the vocal and instrumental performances are always with great skill and of high quality. The music is often performed by pop/rock artists from the American West Coast, but is in no way limited to any geografical area.

News From Hemifran July 2017

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Hemifrån is an independent A&R, promotion and marketing company, based in the heart of Sweden, specializing in, what they call, “gut music” – The kind of music that you can feel in your gut, no matter what. Hemifran is promoting a lot of singer-songwriter, westcoast-pop, country, AOR and more. Here are featured some of their latest news – it is not all west coast, but dig into it!

Passerine – Harbingers

Passerine’s music occupies a zone somewhere between modern folk, progressive bluegrass, and what is loosely called americana. With original songs, as well as their own arrangements of traditional songs, Passerine carries on the living tradition of acoustic folk music rooted in popular experience, memory, and shared wisdom. They have found inspiration across a wide musical spectrum. From Woody Guthrie and Bill Monroe to Lucinda Williams and Old Crow Medicine Show, from Bob Dylan and Neil Young to Cracker and the Black Keys, from the Carter Family and Hazel Dickens to Kate Wolf and Nanci Griffith. By combining diverse musical interests with instrumentation usually associated with a traditional string band, and with vocal harmonies that sometimes move outside the usual structures, Passerine has created a sound with a personality that is both familiar and unique, whether the song is a sweet ballad, a foot stomping bluegrass tune, or one of their more rocking originals.

The band was formed in 2009 by singer songwriter Carmela Pedicini and David Brain. Carmela had already established a substantial regional following with Radio Free Carmela & The Transmitters. Sara Stovall combines classical training with her western Kentucky roots to achieve great versatility across musical genres from punk and psychedelic rock to Passerine’s version of americana. Originally recruited only as a violinist in 2011, Sara has stretched her wings as a vocalist and a songwriter in her own right. Carmela, David and Sara quickly settled in as the core of the group. “Transmitter” Doug Conroy joined up in 2014, earning his Passerine wings on their 6,000 mile Northern Loon tour, with 23 shows in 25 days.

Passerine’s sound has continued to mature as they have toured extensively. The group released their first CD, “Another Song About A Bird”, in July 2012. Their 2nd, “Nest Of String”, was released a year later in 2013. They have just finished their 3rd full length CD, “Harbingers”. They have been featured performers and headliners at major festivals all over Florida. In 2015, they were selected as headliners for the Listening Room Festival in St Petersburg. They were voted Band Of The Year at the Deland Original Music Festival in 2012, and took home an award for Song Of The Year in 2011. In 2014, Passerine was among 3 bands voted Best Of Local Bands by the readers of SRQ Magazine, a notable achievement of an original folk band on a list of mostly rock bands active in the bar scene. More information at Hemifran.

Rob Jungklas– Blackbirds

Rob Jungklas is a Memphis rock legend. In recent years, he has come roaring back into the Memphis music psyche with 4 critically acclaimed recordings on Madjack Records, “Arkadelphia”, “Gully”, “Mapping The Wreckage” and “The Spirit & The Spine”. Ever prolific, Jungklas also self released “Nothing To Fade” in 2014.

He returns to Madjack Records with his new recording, “Blackbirds”, a continuation of his delta-inspired exploration of the holy and profane. Rob Jungklas issued his debut LP “Closer To The Flame” in 1987 on Manhattan Records. On the strength of an MTV video aired for the single ’Boys Town’, the record garnered airplay and modest chart success for his effort, while creating the iconic regional anthem “Memphis Thing”.

The more reflective “Work Songs For A New Moon” that followed 2 years later on RCA, showcased Jungklas nuanced blend of pop songwriting and Memphis style r’n’b. Lee Froelich calls Robs songs ’profane and poetic, haunted by ghosts and damnation’ and the sentiments are echoed by the likes of Rolling Stones David Fricke who describes the sounds as ’bloodied bottleneck guitar and choked prayer’. More information at Hemifran.

Alex Lopez– Slow Down

Born in the heartland of rock’n’roll, this Cleveland, Ohio, area native started with organ lessons at the age of 8 and soon was playing keyboards at local church and school functions. Inspired by The Beatles and British blues rock bands, Alex learned to play the guitar as a teen, developing a style influenced by guitar greats Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Jimi Hendrix.

While playing in local bands like Midnight Voyager and Sahara, Alex spent part of young adulthood recording original songs in small studios and polishing his songwriting skills. After moving to Florida to attend college, Alex played in local bands until his band at the time, Sahara, also relocated to Florida to rejoin him in pursuit of a music career. They had some modest success playing in Florida clubs with a few of Alex’s original songs, eventually receiving local airplay.

Alex took a break from actively pursuing his music career to raise a family. It was during this period Alex reconnected with his blues roots, studying the guitar style of blues greats like BB King, Albert Collins and Buddy Guy. Alex also took this time to write and record a voluminous amount of original material while continuing to hone his guitar skills. More information at Hemifran.

Craig Cassler– Find My Way

Craig Cassler is an independent musician who started his career in San Diego, CA, and now calls Boston, MA, home. ”Find My Way” is his 5th full length album, with 9 tracks of strong acoustic influences of rock, soul, folk, country and reggae. Craig Cassler’s music has been compared to Jack Johnson, Tom Petty and Bob Dylan, among many others. More information at Hemifran.

Michael Ward with Dogs And Fishes– Mendacity

New release from Michael Ward with Dogs And Fishes. More information at Hemifran.

Lesley Kernochan– A Calm Sun

Lesley Kernochan is an americana singer songwriter with occasional bursts of comedy, swing, pop, and jazzy mouth trumpet.  Within each unique song Lesley’s versatile voice brings music to life that is intelligent, achingly beautiful, and playfully surreal. In Lesley’s new album A Calm Sun, she settles into a tender country/folk sound that “casts her in a place delicately between the soundscape of Kacey Musgraves and Norah Jones—studied and soft-spoken, yet rollicking. [PopMatters].”

”A Calm Sun” features the talents of Dean Parks, Aaron Sterling, Jeff Babko, Dan Lutz, Christopher Bruce, Scott Jacoby, Emily Lazar and John Schimpf.  It was recorded in Los Angeles at The Village and East West Studios.

Lesley has an eclectic background as a saxophonist, contemporary composer, operatically trained coloratura, musical saw player, and now singer songwriter. She has 4 albums of original music including the acappella creation ”Undulating”, her indie rock pop jazz sensation ”The Pickle Jar”, the Parent’s Choice Gold Award winning children’s album ”A Day In The Life Of A Boogaleeboo”, and her most recent americana record ”A Calm Sun”.

Lesley is being represented in Germany, Austria  and Switzerland by Make My Day Records, and independently under her own label Maple Syrup Music in all other areas. More information at Hemifran.

About admin

Good music enriches your life. At BLUE DESERT we are passionate about this particular yet wide-ranging style of music we call West Coast Music. This site is a modest tribute to the music and the performing artists, who through the (many) years have given us - and continue to give us - endless hours of musical enjoyment. As long-time fans we want to share our enthusiasm, experiences and views with fellow connoisseurs as well as curious newcomers. If we can do our bit to help promote this great music and all the gifted artist – well, then we have succeeded.

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