Brendan James, Tony Lucca

Brendan James

Brendan James' latest EP, 'The Howl,' finds the singer-songwriter steering into new territory, discovering courage to release a brave new sound, while staying respectful to his meaningful history of lyric and message.

From the opening declaration of "Bring My Love Home" to its conclusion, it is clear James has out done even his own expectations.

For those who have followed Brendan James from his 2008 major label debut, to his current ranking among today's top troubadours; the journey has been a pretty remarkable one.

Born in New Hampshire, schooled in Chapel Hill, signed by Capitol Records by the age of 25, and road tested with 1,000 shows to date, James' has certainly lived the troubadour life. His songs have landed spots on over 15 major television shows and feature films, as well as achieving the #1 Singer Songwriter spot on iTunes, multiple times. He has formed relationships with music legends Carly Simon and Cat Stevens, enjoyed on stage experiences with the likes of John Legend, John Mayer, and Paula Cole, and recently been asked to give a TED Talk on gun violence, love songs, and simpler societies.

Now, after 2 years of touring in support of his 2012 release, 'Simplify,' James embarks on a new sound all together. His new EP, 'The Howl,' set for release in the summer of 2015, is bigger, badder and dancier than anything he's attempted to date. In his words, 'The Howl' is ."..a reflection of my years on the road, my dreams broken and reformed, and my growing addiction to the upbeat and the feel good."

He chose the name after reading a review of his last album, in which he was described as an artist holding back a howl.

So howl he will do. Bigger songs, bigger shows, and bigger goals.

'The Howl' is the bold next step in the evolution of an artist.

The musical journey of Brendan James continues...


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To multiple generations of emerging and established artists, Nashville is nirvana, a music mecca, a fulcrum for serious songwriters who don’t just make music for a living, but for whom music is life. For years now, Tony Lucca has had the energy and spirit of Music City coursing through his veins, a seemingly life-sustaining flow of inspiration that in part served as the lifeblood for the writing, recording and producing of his current self-titled album, the eighth full-length studio set in his notable canon. “When you go into a writing session, you gotta know who you’re writing for… and then you dig in,” says Lucca, who at this stage in his career has become a seasoned songsmith. “I learned a lot right off the bat, because again, doors were flying open for me that would of otherwise stayed shut.”
For Lucca, who was raised in a very large musical family in yet another American music mecca, Detroit, home to Motown, the constant opening of professional doors started when he was very young. But arguably the most divinatory door that’s opened for him was the one he walked through where his sonic sojourn began. “There was definitely this moment that the dream was born as a kid, where my eyes got real wide,” says Lucca. “Walking into a music shop in Detroit when I was probably seven or eight, and just seeing rows and rows of guitars on the walls, and I was like, holy cow, that is awesome. I want all of them.” Though he didn’t get them all, one would do. By the age of 12, his already well-honed musical talent literally began to pay dividends, after earning his first few bucks for a gig at a junior high school dance.
It’s fair to say Lucca has long since stopped chasing his dream of making music, and for some time now has been living his dream. In 1995, following a four-season run as a cast member on The All New Mickey Mouse Club alongside fellow future hit making heavyweights Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears, Lucca relocated to Los Angeles where he dove into doing the Hollywood shuffle/auditioning actor thing before deciding to ditch acting in favor of pursuing his true passion. “I think it was definitely 1996 when I realized I had to make it clear for myself, if no one else, what I was going to do and how I was going to channel my energy; what I was gonna focus on and what I was willing to sacrifice it all for, and that was music,” says Lucca. “I literally walked out of an audition thinking I’ve got to have more to say than this. I went home, grabbed a guitar, wrote a song and I knew right away that it was the caliber of song that if I could stick to it and take it this seriously every time, that I’d be the kind of artist I’ve always dreamed I might end up being at some point.”
Now satisfied with the professional road he was on, Lucca began to put some proverbial musical mud on his tires with his 1997 self-released debut album, So Satisfied, followed later that same year by his sophomore set, Strong Words Softly Spoken. Two EPs and a limited series of live CDs (all released through his website set the table for the release of his third full-length, 2004’s Shotgun.
This year marks the 10-year anniversary of what many fans and critics concede could be the crown jewel of Lucca’s catalog, the emotive Canyon Songs, a touching 10-track tip of the cap to the legendary Laurel Canyon sound immortalized by master musicians including Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne. The album features the standout track “Around the Bend,” which as Lucca recalls was written in a motel room in Nashville. “I went to a liquor store, grabbed a bottle of Tennessee whisky, went back to my motel room, left the door open, grabbed my guitar and just started writing it,” Lucca says. “I remember looking out the door into that southern Tennessee air and just thinking about all the greats that had come through here… and what a pleasure and honor it is to get the opportunity to just grab a bit of that mojo and make it your own, one song at a time.”
So what lies ahead? What is around the bend for Tony Lucca, a man who’s been an actor - making myriad television appearances on popular shows such as Parenthood, The Tonight Show, Last Call with Carson Daly, the Aaron Spelling-produced Malibu Shores, as well as small roles in some independent features? What is the next benchmark for the guy who was tabloid fodder during his years dating actress Keri Russell and a third place finisher on Season 2 of The Voice (which served as a springboard for a series of additional key career milestones, including the signing of a recording contract with Adam Levine’s 222 Records, as well as high profile stints on tour with the likes of Maroon 5, Kelly Clarkson and Sara Bareilles, among countless others)? What’s on tap for a man who is now a husband, a father and of course a top tier singer/songwriter? Plenty!
“It’s the 10-year anniversary of Canyon Songs and oddly enough, I’m one of the few artists at my stage of the game who actually owns all of his records; I own the whole catalog,” Lucca says. “Instead of diving back into the next album cycle, I’ve decided to reflect for a minute and promote the larger body of work, to shine more light on Tony Lucca, the songwriter. I’ve got plenty of traveling ahead. In the meantime, I’ll be working on a periodic releasing of deep cuts, B-sides, rarities, and other stuff with the folks at Rock Ridge Music, culminating in a 10-year anniversary vinyl edition of Canyon Songs.”
Tony Lucca has seen more than his fair share of changes in the musical landscape since the release of his 1997 debut, So Satisfied. It would be easy for a far less determined and dedicated artist to be so dissatisfied with, as Pink Floyd dubbed it back in 1975, “the machine,” so as to throw up their hands in defeat. Instead, Lucca has surveyed the landscape and sees a blank canvas, an opportunity to use a wide new palette of colors to paint more musical portraits, while still displaying his past masterpieces in different frames. That is the sign of a true artist.

Vicci Martinez

Vicci Martinez isn't worried about the rules.

The singer-songwriter continually goes against the grain both musically and lyrically. She doesn't adhere to guidelines of what pop music is supposed to be or how it should be presented. Given her penchant for writing honest, heartfelt songs, she doesn't have to either. When she hits the studio or the stage, she nods to soulful folk and classic rock with an immortal R&B groove beneath everything. On her forthcoming debut album for Universal Republic Records, "VICCI," the world will get to see Vicci for who she is, and it might just be a better place because of it.

$14.00 - $22.00


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