Friday, November 27, 2020

Adobe & Teardrops: Episdoe 147

We cut right to the chase this week with some of the finest Americana out there, plus an interview with Elli Perry about her incredible new song “Glynn County.” The song is only available on her site, and the proceeds go to YOUth Speak, a Glynn County-based youth group that is already making positive change in the wake of Ahmaud Arbury’s murder.

This episode of Adobe & Teardrops was sponsored by WYLD gallery in Austin, Texas! Go to and check out the amazing contemporary Native American art on offer -- for literally any budget!
Album of the Week: Becky Warren -- The Sick Season
Becky Warren’s made something of a career of singing about society’s discards -- homeless communities, veterans, and, now, herself. The Sick Season is the kind of sickly deep dive most of us have been on now that we’re stuck in isolation -- much like a musician traversing miles and miles of road. Warren’s exhaustion with herself will feel familiar to most of us, and she brings some truly stellar backup along with the likes of Emily Saliers and Ben de la Cour. This is the kind of album Adobe & Teardrops lives for and you’ll hear it again on my year-end roundup very, very soon.
  1. Chicks With Dip -- “Snake Oil Salesman” (Stomping on Eggshells) 
    Steven Blane -- “Busking My Way Back To You” (Motel Blue)
  2. Megan and Shane -- “Caroline” (Caroline)
  3. The Pollies -- “Lost” (Not Here)
  4. Juhan Ongbrian -- “Sail On” (Single)
  5. Risa Kopp -- “Grit and Ashes” (Single)
  6. Wild Earp -- “Oligarchy Blues” (Single)
  7. Becky Warren -- Dickerson Pike (The Sick Season)
  8. Johno Leeroy -- “Rest Easy” (The Magnolia Sessions)
  9. Martin and the Fall -- “By the Mile” (Nothing Wrong With This EP)
  10. Ryan Dunlap -- “You Just Got Beat” (Single)
  11. Made of Stone -- “The End” (Single)
INTERVIEW w/ Elli Perry featuring “Glynn County”
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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

HEY! LISTEN: Justy -- "Blues on the Crosley"

This time of year, holiday music is a dime a dozen, but every so often it's actually good. It helps, of course, when the song doesn't focus on a single day, but more of the gestalt. Justy's new single, "Blues on the Crosley," is an effortlessly cool R&B song with beautiful jazz elements, especially a particularly expressive bass line. Christmas is incidental here, as Justy digs deep into that out-of-step holiday malaise and nostalgia so many of us feel around this time of year. 

 Brooklyn-born and Staten Island-raised, artist Justy began writing music at 12 years old. Fast forward 10+ years and the transparent singer/songwriter has blossomed into a unique and promising force in music. Heavily inspired by the works of artists such as J Dilla, Amy Winehouse, NoName, Anderson Paak, and Lauryn Hill, Justy continues to evolve, and incorporate traditional jazz elements into her music. In 2018, Justy's refreshing sound caught the eye of British music powerhead Kwame Kwaten (also of D-Influence) who in turn took on the artist for a two single project which penned her notable tracks "Try,"(2018) and "L8R" (2019).

With vocals often referred to as "chill," and "smooth," Justy's music is rooted in vulnerability. In 2020, she released her debut project Soul Food, the Precede which blends genres to deliver a lyrically impactful portrayal of love,loss, insecurities, and ambition. A self proclaimed "old soul," Justy's work continues showcase her growth as an independent artist. She is currently working on her forthcoming debut album. 

Justy --  Official, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Spotify

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

HEY! LISTEN: Sara Rachele -- "Mr. Tambourine Man"

Sara Rachele is a lot of things: poet, songwriter, veteran studio rat, dog owner, guitarist, head of her label Angrygirl Records, and the resident of a newly purchased abandoned church. Most of all, though, she’s a folk musician.

“That title means sitting on a bag of great songs and sometimes you want to reach into it.”

Having wrapped her most recent recording project in London, then stranded in the US by COVID-19 before being able to finish it, Rachele turned to her roots by recording a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Mr. Tambourine Man.” 


“A few months ago I wanted to put out a folk release. I thought, ‘while things are weird, keep music coming. We can do a fun, simple project.’”

The Dylan standard was one of those songs that made an impression on a young Rachele, who was introduced to the song as a child.

“The song’s extreme universality always made me feel as a kid -- and now as an adult -- less alone. I don't know what the author had in mind, but to me, it always just felt like a discussion of a wandering person who is encountering someone else who is also wandering in a different way.”

Rachele’s rendition slows the song down to a leisurely pace, savoring the moment of connection -- both with the song and Rachele’s lone finger-picked guitar. Rachele wanted the song to ring with the intimacy of a live show. 


2019’s Scorpio Sun, Rachele’s powerful condemnation of abuse within the entertainment industry, proves that she is a survivor who will create on her terms -- no matter what. Rachele is hard at work taking her record label, Angrygal, to the next level. Inspired by Ani DiFranco’s Babeville in Buffalo, Rachele plans to use her church as the label’s headquarters, expanding its roster, and providing a recording and event space for her fellow artists and community.

“I want to give a nod to the concept of the troubadour, the outlaw or the observer, and to say that this song represents coming from someplace else, and arriving or departing, and what that disruption is like and what it's like to be that disrupter. I hope that once this is all over that we can all continue to wander again.” 

Sara Rachele -- Official, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

Monday, November 23, 2020

HEY! LISTEN: MAWD -- "Hot Shit"

 If you don't get sucked in to the pounding drums on MAWD's new song, "Hot Shit," you might not have a pulse. The song is a lush four minutes of finely-crafted wrath, reminiscent of 90s fuzz rock like Garbage and Elastica.

MAWD is the moniker of Los Angeles based musician Madeleine Mathews. With a sound that gravitates toward an eclectic mix of genres including indie rock, folk rock, folk, blues rock with a bit of a 60's/70's retro twist, it's hard to pinpoint her into one musical corner. MAWD's soulful textured timbre is diverse and ranges from a breathy/sultry folk and blues vibe to a powerful belt that fans have claimed are reminiscent of Janis Joplin, Karen O, or Brittany Howard.

Born and bred in a small town in the foothills of California, Madeleine started writing music and making her mark around her hometown of Placerville at age 17. After graduating with a degree in Music Business from CSU, Chico, Madeleine up and moved to Los Angeles in the Fall of 2017. She quickly hit the ground running. Within the first couple months of living in LA, she opened for Larkin Poe at a sold out show at The Hotel Cafe. Soon to follow, MAWD started creating a buzz in the music scene opening for Robby Kreiger of the Doors, touring to SXSW in Spring of 2018, playing over 10+ Sofar Sounds across California, and frequently playing local popular venues (The Hi Hat, The Satellite, Bootleg, Resident, The Hotel Cafe, Non Plus Ultra, Gibson Showroom, and more).

"2020 is a year of clarity," MAWD says of the new single. "Written in a fit of anger, empathy, and self-realization, the idea of 'Hot Shit' was first sparked when a rock n’ roll band I admired was being reckless during quarantine, flicking cigarettes out their car while posting about partying (maskless) with their friends on social media - acting rather 'tone deaf' in a world where hundreds of thousands of people were dying from the virus. Similarly, this band and popular social media icons, friends, and family were either silent or revealed their racist tendencies during the Black Lives Matter movement as well as leading up to the 2020 election.

"The hateful chatter online from pompous and inflated social media egos was beginning to grow louder. Madeleine came to some stark realizations that a lot of people she thought highly of was just a facade. “Hot Shit” is an angry anthem about seeing people clearly for the first time and the weird power trips that come with some people on social media."

MAWD -- Official, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Spotify

Friday, November 20, 2020

Adobe & Teardrops: Episode 146

I didn’t have much to say this week, so we went straight into some excellent soul, indie rock, and Southern rock.

Note: I forgot to mention that Adia Victoria is also singing on "Mississippi Goddamn!"
Album of the Week -- Kelsey Waldon, Theyll Never Keep us Down

Everyone and their mom is doing cover albums -- who feels like writing right now? I mean, come on. But it also shows that some songs are eternal. On this EP, Waldon teams up with some of Nashville’s best to cover some of our nation’s finest protest music. The classics are classics, so I won’t say that Waldon has improved on any of these songs, but she and her band have certainly breathed new urgency into them.
  1. Samantha Martin & Delta Sugar -- “Meet Me in the Morning” (The Reckless One)
  2. Partner -- “Big Gay Hands” AND “Rock Is My Rock” (Never Give Up)
  3. Stillblue -- “Kick to the Chest” (Single)
  4. Made of Stone -- “The End” (Single)
  5. John Calvin Abney -- “Tokyo City Rain” (Familiar Ground)
  6. Josh King -- “Give Up on Love” (The Shed)
  7. The Dustbowl Daddies -- “Oh Little Fire, Oh Little Light of Wisdom” (Single)
  8. Cassie Noble -- “So Like Me” (Single)
  9. Kelsey Waldon -- Mississippi Goddamn (feat. Adia Victoria and Kyshona) (Theyll Never Keep us Down)
  10. Ward Davis -- “Get to Work Whiskey” (Black Cats and Crows)
  11. Charles Ellsworth -- “Blessed” (Single)
  12. Alex Culbreth -- “The Midnight Oil” (Rotgut Coffeepot Lovesick Blues)
  13. Rett Madison -- “Kerosene” (Single)
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Thursday, November 19, 2020

VIDEO: Half/Brother -- "Second Avenue"

 I think I've written a few times now that I feel homesick for New York City...even though I'm still right here. (Unlike those yellowbellies who fled in the spring.) 

So it's poignant to watch Half/Brother's video for "Second Avenue," both to see footage of a part of the city I just haven't been to in a while, but also to see how much of it has changed. It gives the song itself -- reminiscing about an old flame -- some extra heft.

When we get to the chorus and hear "I remember the way it was/On Second Avenue" it's not just about warm memories of a youth gone by too fast, but a way of life we won't regain for quite some time. (Though based on some of the people in the video, there are plenty who aren't rising to the moment to change their lifestyles.) The steel guitar certainly adds to the atmosphere.

Half/Brother -- Official, Facebook, Instagram, Spotify, Soundcloud, Tidal, Apple Music 

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

VIDEO: Jenn Grinels -- "Resilience"

Nashville veteran Jenn Grinels relocated to Portland, and in doing so found the grounding she needed to get to work on her new album, Go Mine, set to be released on November 20th. 

The album features elements of soul, jazz, folk, blues, pop, Americana, and rock. Grinels’ music has a poised delivery and balanced power reminiscent of long-established rock icons like Bonnie Raitt, and the loose, expectation-defying variety of artists like Martin Sexton 

Photo: Anna Haas

"Resilience" is the 4th single from Jenn's forthcoming album, Go Mine. About the song, Jenn said: "When I wrote this song, I never could have imagined just how much our resilience would be tested in these times. I hope this song reaches all who need it. I hope it provides catharsis and serves as a glimmering reminder that we will get through this: all that this year has thrown at us… on top of everything we already wrestle with and endure."

The video for "Resilience" highlights the isolation and hardships we've endured in 2020, though the song has a more timeless message, and feels it was written about a much more personal experience. As the string section swells -- not with triumph, but with acknowledgement -- anyone who has had to embody the word "resilience" will find their heart pulled along with the crescendo. 

"We will [endure]; we humans are incredibly resilient creatures," Grinels continues. "This stunningly beautiful, emotional video was championed by my Patreon patrons, who not only funded its making, but were the voices that suggested and encouraged its creation. They reminded me that music helps get us through difficult times and this is a song some people might really need right now. I wanted to release this song back in March, but it got caught up in the flurry of my other singles. Then I was worried that the moment had passed. Unfortunately - it hadn't - and this song feels even MORE relevant now." 

 Go Mine is out this Friday, November 20th.

Jenn Grinels --  Official, Facebook, Instagram, Spotify