Cranky George – ‘Misery Road’ single from ‘Fat Lot of Good Album’

Pleasingly lo-fi and full of charm, this is the video for new single ‘Misery Road’ from folk-rock five piece Cranky George. Taken from their new album ‘Fat Lot of Good’, this rides an easy mid-tempo throughout, and takes highlights from a couple of smart time signature changes.

Based in LA, Cranky George’s signature sound arguably comes from the deep vocal of lead singer Dermot Mulroney, all set to a lilting roots background. And if you’re wondering where you’ve seen his face before, Mulroney is perhaps better known as an actor than musician, having appeared in movies like ‘My Best Friend’s Wedding’.

The album is available now from the band’s website.

New folk music alert! Folkstock Records set for ‘Downtown’ compilation release

Available from tomorrow on their website, Folkstock Records are releasing their brand new folk compilation album ‘Downtown’. Putting together a ten song collection from eight different artists, the album pulls together new music from some of their most promising finds of the last year or so.

The album is being released in celebration of those eight artists, who will all be playing a part in this year’s London Folk and Roots Festival with the help of the Folkstock label.

Both ‘Emerging Artist’ events will be held on successive Tuesdays at The Islington venue in London, and should be in the diary of any London based folk fan. November 4th sees Folkstock host an alternative country evening, with Fred’s House, Marina Florance, Kaity Rae and Ben Smith. One week later, they will be celebrating talented female songwriters with Kelly Oliver, Minnie Birch, Daria Kulesh and Zoe Wren on November 11th.

If you can’t wait that long, then you can get the album from tomorrow from £7. However, if you can make it along to the gigs, you will be able to pick up a copy for free. Not a bad reward for simply supporting independent folk.

Tickets: November 4th / November 11th

More info on claiming your free album: Click here

Buy the album: Click here

Kelly Moneymaker – ‘Stone’ album out now

Some of the finest offshoots of roots music – gospel, country, rock and roll, and particularly soul – stand front and center of this great new album from vocalist Kelly Moneymaker.

Out now, ‘Stone’ finds Moneymaker on really fine form, growling out her powerful vocal over a range of genres, all given a consistency by the clean production and that unique voice.

On top of those solid foundations, Moneymaker sparkles throughout – 13 tracks of varying styles, all adding up to a very solid and consistent release.

Leo Sayer – ‘Restless Years’ album

Straight up pop laced with folky touches of harmonica, blues, and even a touch of jazz, the new album from Leo Sayer is out now. A million miles from the stomping folk style currently popular in the charts, this is subtle, effective and mellow, but just as uplifting in its own way.

Packed with songs in which Sayer looks back on life with something of a contented smile, the album shows off a songwriter who knows his hit making days are behind him, but still loves what he does. Just look at the production – all taken care of by the man himself – for the proof. Meticulous, clean, and well captured, every note is clear as a bell and perfectly placed.

The lyrics are those of an artist ruminating on the latter years of a legendary career, sharing his thoughts on later life, the state of the world, the music industry and more. Hugely pleasant company you will want to return to time and again.

Buy the album now:



With special guest, singer/songwriter, Michael Armstrong





























Video: ‘Live on Love’ by Jess Thristan – EP out now

With a lovely, lilting rhythm that strays into a nice country feel, ‘Live on Love’ is the new video from rising star Jess Thristan. It’s the lead track from a new EP of the same names and keeps up the great momentum Jess Thristan has been showing in recent months.

Be it support from Radio 2, writing alongside established hit-making songwriters, or featuring on countless online acoustic sessions, Thristan is clearly building quite the following. Hopefully, it won’t be long before that following becomes too big for the mainstream media to ignore.


Jerry Lawson – ‘Just a Mortal Man’ album out now – debut solo album, AGE 71!

Out now through Red Beet Records, ‘Just a Mortal Man’ is a very special album for two reasons. Not only is it a great listen, but it’s the very first solo album ever released by 71 year old Jerry Lawson. Lawson, who has worked at the top of showbusiness for over 40 years, has always been part of hit making groups, but never stepped out on his own. Until now.

The result is this 13 track collection of laid back, low octane but high quality set of tracks with a real rootsy feel.  Charming throughout, Lawson’s smooth baritone moves like warm treacle over the classy backing, taking in folk, gospel, country, pop, soul, funk and so much more. It’s a fitting first album from a man who has clearly still got enough talent to flaunt it, but does it here in humble, low-key fashion.

The only taste you can find online at the moment seems to be the video below, a nice little rock’n’roll number. But trust me when I say there’s plenty more where that came from.

‘It Is What It Is’ – the new album from Songs for Mr Sloane

Out now, the new album from Songs For Mr Sloane is called ‘It Is What It Is’ and it’s a real songwriter’s LP. Not strictly folk or roots, though there are plenty of elements in the lyrics and storytelling, this is instead an album of mixed genres, something of an exercise in eclecticism.

The creation of a group of musicians from different background, you get the feeling that this is music as the band want it to sound. A host of ideas tossed in the juicer to see what comes out, it makes for an intriguing listen – compelling at times, less so at others.

By its very nature the songs ebb and flow as the genres and style change, and it’s hard to imagine one single listener likeing the whole thing. Some of the songs are so different, tied together only by the gruff, no nonsense vocal, that any perceived strengths and weaknesses will be entirely subjective. It will depend on the taste of the listener which bits they think are strongest.

One thing’s for sure though – all the musicianship, production and structural integrity of the songs is on point, and you can’t disagree with those qualities, even if one or two individual styles leave you cold.

Interview – Sasha McVeigh, Acoustic EP out now

Artist name: Sasha McVeigh

Release name: Sasha McVeigh – Acoustic EP

Release date: March 16th 2013 (Debut Album will be released in April/May 2015)

1. Where and when did you first discover your interest in music?

I’ve been interested in music since I was a little girl. I’ve been singing
since I could talk, so it’s something I’ve always known I wanted to be
apart of my life.

2. What are your main ambitions in the industry?

I want to prove thatyou can make your mark in this industry without having money or
connections, and without having to conform. A lot of the time people
get to where there are in the music business because they have wealthy
family or they know people. My parents are both pensioners and I’m
from a small, rural village in the West Midlands. Everything that’s
been achieved has been achieved through hard work and dedication. We
sold whatever we could so I could go to Nashville the first time in
2012 and have basically been living on a shoe-string ever since. I
can’t thank my parents enough for the sacrifices they’ve made for me.
It’s incredible to know they believe in me so much and very humbling.

3. When did you start writing your own songs/music?

I started writing when I was 12 years-old. I’ve always loved writing stories and poems,
so it was a natural progression to the songwriting. I used it as a
means to vent my emotions. My songs were like rhyming diary entries
and they still are. The best way to find out about me is by listening
to my music.

4. What would you say is your music career highlight to date?
Definitely when I was asked to perform at the Academy of Country Music
Awards Kick-Off Concert with Hunter Hayes, Cole Swindell and David
Nail. The CEO of the ACM’s, Bob Romeo, saw me performing and said he
wanted me to be involved in the event. I of course never imagined it
would actually happen, but a few months later we got the call and then
I was flying to Las Vegas to perform. It was a huge honour and a
moment I will never forget.

5. Who will we hear in your songs? What are your influences?

Some of my biggest influences would have to be Elvis Presley, Zac Brown Band,
Dolly Parton, Taylor Swift, Shania Twain and Simon & Garfunkel. My Dad
was a big country music and folk fan, he loved Cat Stevens and Dolly,
whereas my Mum was a massive Motown, Simon & Garfunkel and Rolling
Stones fan. I had a very diverse musical upbringing and I think that’s
reflected in my songwriting.

6. What’s the most important thing you’d want to tell people about
your current release?

My current release is an acoustic EP and all the song’s were written solely by me. This was the first time I’d everrecorded any of my material so I think you can hear that newness in
the music. It’s very honest because of the songwriting but also
because it’s just my voice and a guitar, there aren’t any gimmicks. My
debut album that comes out in April/May will be different in the sense
it’s a full album with full instrumentation, but you’re still going to
get that honesty in the writing. That’s just who I am!

7. Who else can you recommend from your genre or local area for people
to have a listen to?

In terms of American artists, people should definitely check out Sonia Leigh who I’ll be doing a co-headline tour across UK & Ireland with in April, she’s phenomenal, I’d say she’s a
combination of Janis Joplin and KT Tunstall but she has her own flair
too of course. Also take a listen to Zac Brown Band, Charlie Worsham,
Brett Eldredge, Old Dominion and Sam Hunt. In terms of British/Irish
artists, take a listen to The Rising, Liv Austen, Dexeter, Emma Jade
and Ward Thomas.

8. Any gigs coming up?

Like I said I’ll be performing all across UK and Ireland in April on tour with Sonia Leigh. We’ll have all British artists opening for us too so it’ll be a lot of fun, a lot of those
artists, along with us, all performed at the C2C Festival at The O2.
Tickets are on sale now!

9. Where can we find/follow you online?

You can find me on all forms of social media: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, SoundCloud,
you name it, I’ve got it. I love to stay connected to my fans as much as possible.

Bill Deiz single ‘Rather Have Sooner’ and new memoir

Billy Ray Deiz has had a lot of success with his single “Rather Have Sooner” since the last time MuzicNotez featured him in the July of 2014 Magazine. On January 17, 2015, he was informed that “Rather Have Sooner” entered The Broadjam Top 10 charts on the Oregon Top 10 at #10! And for a reason! The song has that bluesy twang and groovy soul to get your fingers snapping and your body moving.

Billy Ray isn’t wet behind the ears. He was one of the founding members of The Seven Souls (1960), opening for big names such as James Brown and The Righteous Brothers. When the war escalated in Vietnam, Deiz was drafted into the Marine Corps as a rifleman at Camp Pendleton, but never set foot in Vietnam.

Billy Ray Deiz has lived quite a life which has led him into writing a memoir, “Chasing America, How I Found My Dream”. The book is filled with his experiences with racism and classification, his view on WWII up until today’s world, drawbacks that he has overcome, and folks who have supported and inspired him along the way. Other important qualities of the book include Deiz’s life as a kid from Harlem and his upbringing in Portland, Oregon, being Co-Founder of The Seven Souls (which was one of the fiery American Soul bands of the 60s), his successful newsman career as an Award Winning Television News Anchor, and as an actor in Los Angeles! Living such a well-rounded life and not sharing it with the world, would be criminal. Be sure to put Billy Ray Deiz’s inspirational Memoir, “Chasing America, How I Found My Dream”, on your reading list and to listen to his single “Rather Have Sooner”!

Lonna Marie’s fantastic new EP – ‘The Worst Has Just Begun’

Lilting and beautiful, the track above, ‘Drifting’, is one of four tracks on a new EP from US based artist Lonna Marie, and typifies the quality on show throughout the EP. Contrasting a gentle vibe with well constructed lyrics that really hit home, it’s a strong opening release from an artist who clearly knows her way around the country pop genre.

Lonna Marie also takes a unique approach to her music, not only writing original songs for release, but also submitting unsolicited theme tunes and jingles for Dropbox and Paypal. In an industry where half the battle is getting noticed, I think it’s fair to say that’s an innovative way to do it!

Keep an eye on Lonna Marie online: