MP3 August West - Jones Station Sessions
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11 MP3 Songs
ROCK: Americana, COUNTRY: Country Rock
JONES STATION SESSIONS is the new CD from the Annapolis MD based duo August West, featuring Steve Lowe and Meg Murray. Their second release includes old August West favorites that weren't recorded for their first record BISHOP STREET from 1996, plus, some great new songs written by both Steve and Meg during their 8 year hiatus. Their efforts have produced a strong collection of really good songs that are bound to have you singing, even after the radio is turned off!
From the bluegrass feel of "Rag Top Blues" and "The Ballad of Daisy", to the blues stomp of "The Bossman", from the Stonesy Annapolitan love letter "Downtown", to the Staxx inspired "Still", and then back around to the good 70's country-rock sounds of "If I Knew the Way" and "Sunday Morning", this CD has it all for those who grew up loving real rock n' roll.
Mixed by Bill Plummer and Rob Cosentino, this record is backed up by the stellar talents of Annapolis Maryland's finest performers such as Dean Rosenthal, John Previti, Jeff Muller of Jes Grew & Rich Chorne, Bryan Ewald of Starbelly & Jarflys, Jen Reichwein of Crosstown, Ruben Dobbs of The Velvet Thud & Dingleberry Dynasty, John Gillespie of Blue Miracle & Jarflys, Anthony Setola of Non-Fiction, Rob Reboso of Dingleberry Dynasty, Kevin Martin and Mike Miller of The Geckos, Jimi Davies of Jimmie's Chicken Shack & Jarflys, Mike Kirby of Fast Eddie & Naked Jungle, Angie Miller, Dana Biagini, Ben Grant, John Duley, and more!!
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CHESAPEAKE MUSIC GUIDE
By: Michael Macey
Artist: August West
Title: Jones Station Sessions
Label: Girl Island
August West is Meg Murray and Steve Lowe and Jones Station Sessions is the duo's second release and they've surrounded themselves with a who's who of area players to produce a record that's a loose and funky collection of songs that makes this album one of my top picks of the year.
Splitting songwriting duties just about 50/50, they don't collaborate with each other, the tunes range from the pissed off kiss off of Murray's "Don't Call My Name" which has some very nice upright bass and sousaphone interplay from John Previti and Ben Grant respectively, to the blues with Lowe's "Outbound Train" with Meg's background vocal disembodied just enough to give it a slightly eerie feel. Add Dean Rosenthal's mournful slide and dobro work and you've got a tune that sounds as timeless as the blues itself.
Murray displays more of a pop sensibility than Lowe. In her tune "Downtown"which shares the name of the 60's pop hit made famous by Petula Clark, Murray manages ever so briefly to use a melody from that hit throughout her song. Sampling, but not.
Lowe is more the traditional writer and his songs like "Rag Top Blues" has it's origins in swing-blues and bluegrass and would be a great tune to do the Charleston to, if anybody actually did the Charleston anymore. His "The Bossman" is a funky blues based shuffle that's propelled along by Rosenthal, Jeff Miller on bass and Mike Kirby on drums along with the ever entertaining Ruben Dobbs on backing vocals.
One of my favorites by Murray is "Still". When she sings "I'd rather love you and miss you than have you and hate you" There's just enough ache in her voice to convince you it's true. And from Lowe it's "Lifetime In Blue" a solo acoustic number that's full of emotion. With lyrics that read "In a memory worth remembering it's a lifetime that is true/for a moment of indiscretion leaves a lifetime left in blue" had me wanting to know more about what he was talking about.
Produced and recorded by Meg Murray at the Compound in Arnold, Jones Station Sessions has a nice airy live sound that really works well and shows she knows her way around the boards.
August West have delivered an album as varied as you're going to find anywhere. Lots of great sounds and songs from two totally different writers that compliment each other perfectly.
Local history footnote: Jones Station was a stop on the old B&A railroad at just about the border of Severna Park and Arnold at Jones Station Rd and B&A Blvd. The station building is still standing and in use today.
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