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Samantha Fish`s Big Summer Kick Off Party
Samantha Fish Is Playin’ Up a Storm on New Ruf Records CD, Black Wind Howlin’, Due September 10 Follow-Up Album to Her Blues Music Award-Winning Debut Was Produced by Mike Zito and Features Guest Appearances by Zito, Yonrico Scott, Charlie Wooton and Paul Thorn
KANSAS CITY, MO – Ruf Records announces a September 10 U.S. release date for Black Wind Howlin’, the new CD from blues-rock guitarist/singer Samantha Fish and follow-up to her 2012 Blues Music Award-winning label debut, Runaway. Produced by Mike Zito, who did the same honors on her last album, Black Wind Howlin’ was recorded at Dockside Studios in Maurice, Louisiana, and features Samantha’s blazing guitar and vocals backed by Mike Zito on guitar and vocals, plus his fellow Royal Southern Brotherhood members Yonrico Scott on drums/percussion and Charlie Wooton on bass. Special guests include Paul Thorn on vocals, Johnny Sansone on harmonica and Bo Thomas on fiddle.
Kansas City-based Samantha Fish has been on a major roll ever since she teamed up with Cassie Taylor and Dani Wilde on Ruf’s 2011 release, Girls with Guitars, and fueled by the trio’s Blues Caravan tour of Europe and the U.S., created an international buzz in the blues world. Later that same year she recorded Runaway, her solo debut on Ruf, which mixed gutsy riff-blues rockers like “Down In The Swamp” with the mellow small-hours jazz of “Feelin’ Alright,” while marinating her songwriting in the groove of the Rolling Stones and even tipping a hat to Heart. “It’s all the sounds I grew up with,” she explained at the time, “with my own spin.” Earlier this year Samantha joined labelmate Devon Allman for a sultry duet of the Tom Petty classic, “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” that appeared on Devon’s Turquoise CD and accompanying video.
Hitting a receptive international blues and rock press, Runaway was hailed as a thrilling opening statement, earning a string of rave reviews and radio airplay, climaxed by her winning the Blues Music Award (BMA) for “Best New Artist Debut” in 2012. “I’m truly humbled by the recognition,” Samantha said afterward. “I can barely wait to make record number two…”
Now, the wait is over, as Samantha Fish unleashes a major storm of her trademark guitar work and soulful vocals on Black Wind Howlin’. “It has a rebellious streak,” says the bandleader of her game-changing new album, “and a prevalent theme is, ‘I’m not gonna take your sh*t anymore…’”
No “sophomore slump” here, as Black Wind Howlin’ leaps from the speakers with 12 smoking tracks that chart Samantha’s evolution as songwriter, gunslinger and lyricist. “Since completing Runaway back in 2011, I’ve been on tour pretty much non-stop,” she proclaims. “I’ve spent a lot of time writing, playing and listening to music. I feel like the themes and the sound of my music have matured. To me, it’s about the human experience from my perspective, as well as people I’ve come into contact with over the last few years.”
Rather than trying to duplicate what she accomplished on her first success, Samantha re-defines her sound throughout the tracks on Black Wind Howlin’. She can be brutally rocking on cuts like the tour bus snapshot of “Miles To Go” (“Twelve hours to Reno/ten hours til the next show”), the swaggering “Sucker Born” (“Vegas left me weary, LA bled me dry/skating on fumes as I crossed the Nevada line…”) and the venomous “Go To Hell” (“Oh, this ain’t my first rodeo/You hit yourself a dead end/Your voodoo eyes, ain’t gonna cast a spell/So you can go to hell!”). “I’ve become tougher,” she notes of these head-banging moments, “and I think that was reflected in the sound we went for.”
And yet, elsewhere, backed by the versatile production of longtime collaborator Mike Zito, you’ll find Samantha shifting gears to the aching slide-guitar balladry of “Over You” (“Echoing words, said I’d never make it on my own…”) and the redemptive country song, “Last September” (“Don’t remember the curves of my face/Can’t feel the warmth in my embrace/Well I’m here to remind you…”).
She might stop off for a gritty cover of Howlin’ Wolf’s “Who’s Been Talking,” and co-wrote “Go to Hell” with Zito, but all other tracks are Samantha’s self-penned originals, and it’s a mix that will keep listeners on their toes. “I wanted this record to have a modern rocking sound,” she explains of the album’s vibe. “I also wanted it to have elements of Americana, country and roots.”
For Samantha, the recording sessions proved just as rewarding as the writing “I had a dream team of musicians and special guests,” she recalls. “And Dockside Studios quickly became one of my favorite places on earth.”
It hasn’t been that long since a teenaged Samantha Fish first started showing up at her local Kansas City blues club, Knuckleheads Saloon, and began soaking up the sounds of visiting modern blues guitar masters like Mike Zito and Tab Benoit, then going back to ’80s heroes like Stevie Ray Vaughan and following the lineage to the pre-war Delta masters. “I fell in love with it,” she told Premier Guitar of her growing passion for the form, “and started doing my homework by listening to the old guys like Son House and Skip James.”
With those influences as her template, Samantha incorporated the sounds of the classic rock of The Rolling Stones and Tom Petty, alongside contemporary artists like Sheryl Crow and The Black Crowes, in putting together a sound that would become her own.
By the age of 18, Samantha had settled on a searing lead guitar style that expressed her own voice rather than mimicking clichéd blues licks note-for-note. She quickly broke into a dues-paying period on the Kansas City jam circuit: an apprenticeship at the sharp end that tightened her musical chops, polished her stagecraft and gave her the grit to overcome occasional skepticism about her age, hair tone and gender. “I always hated the idea of the gimmick,” she told Premier Guitar. “People come out just because you are a girl, but then you have so much more to prove once you get them in the door.” And Samantha has delivered on that promise, as evidenced by one listen to the new recording. “I really got to do exactly what I wanted to do on Black Wind Howlin’,” she says, “and I’m incredibly proud of it.”
Samantha Fish will support the release of her new album with constant touring. For more information on the artist, visit www.samanthafish.com and www.rufrecords.de.
Southern Avenue Band
Moreland & Arbuckle
“Raw, dirty, primal and infectious…sizzling guitar, sturdy vocals and rude harmonica” –USA Today
“Deeply satisfying...gritty soul and blues with garage overtones and fire-and-brimstone vocals” –Living Blues Guitarist Aaron Moreland—co-founder of the groundbreaking Kansas-based trio Moreland & Arbuckle—describes their music as “gritty blues and roots rock from the heartland.” Moreland, harmonicist/vocalist Dustin Arbuckle and drummer Kendall Newby bring fierce electric fury and unrelenting punk rock energy to their original songs, inspired by raw Delta and Mississippi Hill Country blues. Their songs are expertly executed with musical muscle and fifth-gear urgency. When they perform more traditional blues, they play with the same decisive command. With each of their six previous releases, the band has grown musically and lyrically, creating a signature sound while earning a large and loyal worldwide fan base. Their legendary raw and raucous live shows are played with wild abandon. The New York Post says Moreland & Arbuckle have “a raw juke joint exuberance with a dirt-under-the fingernails garage band attack.” The group’s evolution continues with their Alligator Records debut Promised Land Or Bust, produced by Matt Bayles (Mastodon, Botch, The Sword). From the howling cosmic opener Take Me With You (When You Go) to the stomping Mean And Evil to the plaintive Mount Comfort, Promised Land Or Bust is a far-reaching musical showcase. The instantly-memorable, slice-of-life songs paint scenes of double-crossed lovers, women meaner than the devil, and isolated loners beaten down by careless love. According to Moreland, “The new album is consciously traditional but still has the signature drive and power that we have crafted over the past thirteen years.” Moreland says signing with Alligator is a perfect fit. “One of our biggest influences ever, Hound Dog Taylor, was the very first Alligator artist. One of the reasons we have the non-traditional lineup of no bass player was inspired by listening to Hound Dog’s music as we were coming up.” According to Alligator president Bruce Iglauer, bringing Moreland & Arbuckle to the label known for its Genuine Houserockin’ Music was an easy choice. “I’ve watched this band grow from talented interpreters of raw, traditional blues into creators of fresh, original roots-based songs. Live, the energy just pours out of them.” Aaron Moreland was born December 16, 1974. He played in a number of garage bands while growing up and was influenced by punk music before having what he calls his “Son House moment.” Hearing the blues legend’s Death Letter Blues for the first time at age 22, he changed course, focusing his playing on nothing but acoustic blues for the next several years. Dustin Arbuckle was born December 25, 1981. He first discovered blues in his mid-teens and received what he refers to as “a calling. Getting into blues made me want to play music,” he says. He played in blues-rock bands, inspired by Little Walter and Sonny Boy Williamson, while learning to sing with deep soul and honest authority. The two met at an open mic session in their hometown of Wichita, Kansas back in 2001 and they quickly bonded over their mutual love of blues. Less than a year later, they joined forces, their raw and energetic approach to the music melding perfectly. Soon after coming together, Moreland and Arbuckle played both as an acoustic duo and as The King Snakes, a four piece electric band. Keeping a bass player proved difficult, and they soon found they made a better sound without one, as Moreland kept the rhythm thumping on his guitar while Arbuckle took the music into overdrive with his harmonica and vocals. The band quickly became local heroes, filling clubs beyond capacity. It wasn’t long before they started touring larger cities around the country, earning new fans with every performance. From their 2005 self-release Caney Valley Blues to 2013’s 7 Cities on Telarc, Moreland & Arbuckle have grown from a fiery, crowd-pleasing duo to a genre-smashing three-piece band. Together, Moreland’s simultaneous bass, rhythm and lead guitar work and Arbuckle’s emotionally-charged harmonica and edgy vocals—driven by Newby’s propulsive drumming—create a sound that is forceful enough to grab a listener’s attention and nuanced enough to hold it. American Songwriter says the group’s music is “swampy, sweaty and muggy...mixing a bluesy foundation with bits of country, folk and squawking American rock and roll.” WNYC’s Soundcheck says the band plays “gritty blues with a thoroughly contemporary bite.” Over the course of their career, Moreland & Arbuckle have played hundreds of shows and have logged hundreds of thousands of road miles (recently replacing their van after driving it over 400,000 miles), performing in the United States, Canada and across Europe. In 2008 they spent 10 days in Iraq, playing for the troops. They’ve shared stages with ZZ Top, George Thorogood, Buddy Guy, Robert Cray and Los Lonely Boys. They’ll return to the road in support of the new album, with dates in the United States, Europe and beyond. No Depression says, “These guys have kegs full of talent. Their songs will keep you driving fast and long.” Now, with Promised Land Or Bust, Moreland & Arbuckle are ready to bust it all wide open. Arbuckle calls the new album “our best yet,“ and says, “we continue to evolve musically outside of the box we started in, but the bedrock—the blues —is always there.” Moreland adds, “We consciously went back to where we started and it took us to a brand new place.” That new place is clearly part of Moreland & Arbuckle’s never ending musical journey. And for them and their ever-growing fan base, there’s no turning back now.
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05-19-17 Bone Thugs -n- Harmony