DATIN & FERN | “Did It A Lot”
Christian, Hip hop/rap; Menace Movement – STREAM / BUY single
Datin, core member of the Menace Movement collective, is one of the most sought after artists on the Christian hip hop scene today. Fern—one-half of Social Club Misfits—comes to collab on this new track with fellow Menace-man after several recent Datin-Marty duos (Social Club’s other half) have hit the scene hard in 2020 (notably, May 1’s CHH Aint Dead, Vol. 1 release).
WOODLANDS WORSHIP | “Echoes”
Christian, praise/worship; Woodlands Worship — STREAM / BUY single
Keeping in step with their core values—Honesty: Expressing feelings of pain, questions, and even doubt in the midst of belief—Woodlands Worship releases “More than a Feeling,” a two-song EP that drops in the midst of much unrest and world-wide questioning. Located just north of Houston, TX, Woodlands Church is currently the 9th largest church in the United States—averaging almost 20,000 congregants per week–with additional locations in Atascocita and Tomball, TX. Woodlands Worship is the arts extension and collective of Woodlands Church.
JEREMY GARRETT | “Nevermind”
Americana, folk; Organic Records — STREAM / BUY single
Jeremy Garrett is expanding the notion of acoustic roots music — and though he’s driven by a personal need to transform his own artistic efforts, he’s also paving the way for a reinvigoration of those roots by a whole new generation of musicians. Starting in the demanding world of bluegrass, he’s mastered the canon, developed his own voice within it, and then pushed his creativity to a new place, free from convention and welcoming to artistic exploration. Though he’ll tell you that he’s just making music that inspires him, as a one-man band both in the studio and on stage Jeremy Garrett is a break from the norm.
For his first single since the release of his Organic Records debut album, Circles, Jeremy delivers a startling unique version of “Nevermind,” the gigantic groove-pop hit from Israeli artist Dennis Lloyd. With the support of Crossroads Studios’ engineer Scott Barnett, Garrett loops guitar, mandolin, fiddle, percussion, and vocal to create a variation that retains the original’s soaring atmospherics while offering an affecting, haunting tinge that’s all his own.
Violin double stops and layered jams that seem hardly possible on acoustic instruments, wah-wah mandolin chops, ghostly percussion and more make this “Nevermind” an irresistible, enjoyable invitation to an open-ended groove for groove sake: dance music on roots music instruments.
“Diving deeper into my looping project, I was looking for a soulful song that was popular, yet somehow obscure,” Garrett recalls. “And this song embraces the vibe that I was looking for in a cover for my new record.”
“No one knows what the future holds for how music is made,” he adds, as he looks at his latest work. “But I believe if you embrace how human creativity can shape that future, perhaps your art can flow more freely with the advent of new technologies and tools that become available. This is part of my journey, to explore how to combine my voice and the traditional bluegrass instruments that I play — including fiddle, guitar, and mandolin — with effects, beats, and looping to create what is my sound and show.”
MARK STOFFEL | “Shadowbands”
Bluegrass; Mountain Home Music Company — STREAM / BUY single
For his debut single for Mountain Home, mandolinist Mark Stoffel — heretofore known as a “player’s player” who’s spent the past decade as a member of Chris Jones & The Night Drivers — offers up “Shadowbands,” a contemplative, atmospheric composition inspired by 2017’s solar eclipse.
Accompanied by former Night Driver Gina Furtado (banjo), acclaimed Irish fiddler/violinist Niall Murphy, co-producer Josh Morrison on guitar, and longtime colleague Ross Sermons (upright bass), Stoffel punctuates a distinctively symmetrical melody and classic fiddle tune structure with moody interludes that capture the skittering feel of the natural phenomenon for which the track is named.
“You can find the specifics online,” Stoffel notes, “but in short, shadow bands are wavy light patterns that happen briefly before and shortly after totality. Like many of the phenomena associated with a solar eclipse, these happen on the ground, not in the sky, and they are truly amazing.”
Stoffel’s interest in the eclipse was piqued originally by his fondness for nature, then amplified by his work in, among other things, producing media for Southern Illinois University; in addition to the composition, he and a colleague also made an award-winning documentary about their town’s preparations for the eclipse, as well as the event itself.
Widely considered to be among the genre’s unique stylists, thanks to a sophisticated yet energetic approach that reflects his long-standing affinity for contemporary, newgrass-flavored sounds, Mark can readily pinpoint the origins of “Shadowbands.”
“The idea was hatched at a bluegrass festival in Auburn, Alabama, in June of 2017,” he remembers, “while warming up for a show with Chris Jones & The Night Drivers. This happened just a couple months before the 2017 solar eclipse and my hometown was smack in the center of it; we were all hyped and anticipation was huge! It brought people of all stripes together, something we needed then and especially now. Everything is connected and I’d like to believe that much of the music I created during that time was informed by this experience.”
PINECASTLE RECORDS | United We Stand
Bluegrass; Pinecastle Records — STREAM / BUY album
United We Stand is a bluegrass celebration of America and its roots-true sound for which this music is known the world-over. Featuring the best guitar-pickers in the business, original songs mixed with patriotic flair give this top-to-bottom listen a vote for Old Glory and the American way.
STEPHEN MOUGIN | “The Song That I Call Home”
Bluegrass; Dark Shadow Recording — STREAM / BUY single
A multifaceted artist and businessman, Stephen “Mojo” Mougin is the founder of Dark Shadow Recording, and best known musically as principal guitarist for Sam Bush. Dark Shadow, located in Nashville, is label home for bluegrass, folk, and country artists such as award-winning Becky Buller and up-and-comer Rick Faris.
THE ISBELL FAMILY | Rise Up
Southern Gospel; Chapel Valley — STREAM / BUY album
The Isbell Family, from Savannah, TN, are a full-time traveling music ministry that have performed over 2,00- shows and events since 2013. Comprised of Eric, Rachel, Autumn, and Kaleb, the family band has been featured at the National Quartet Convention, Dollywood, and syndicated Christian television show, Atlanta Live!
YANCY & LITTLE PRAISE PARTY | Ready Set Go
Christian, children’s/kids; Yancy Ministries — STREAM / BUY EP
LEXZ PRYDE | “Color Blind”
Pop; Cymatcz LLC — STREAM / BUY single
Brittany Rose Peechatka, professionally known as Lexz Pryde, is an American recording artist, songwriter, dancer, model, and influencer based in New York City and calls Pennsylvania home. She released her first single “Motivate” featuring Snoop Dogg in 2016, and subsequently opened up for him on his Holiday Tour and Super Bowl Week the same year. “Motivate” enjoyed airplay from Chicago to the Northeast—she is anticipating the release of her next LP.
RELEASED THURSDAY, JULY 9:
STREETLIGHTS | Salmos // Libro 2 (Capítulos 42-72)
Christian, hip hop/rap; Streetlights – STREAM / BUY album
Streetlights—now a 501c3 non-profit—began its humble roots in Chicago in the mid-2000s among three close friends. The light switch flipped when they recorded scripture readings over hip hop beats—the whole city listened, and young people and leaders from all over Chicago exclaimed, “We need this!” Thus, an urban ministry was born.