What's New: Roots Department

Here we cover new-releases from the rich traditions of Soul music, Country Music, Blues & Jazz, along with the traditional folk-musics the world over. We'll tip you off to quality reissues while also checking in with today's torch carriers.

Ben Pirani How Do I Talk To My Brother?

The Colemine record label out of Ohio has become on of the absolute top purveyors of contemporary soul music. So far they’ve introduced us to Durand Jones and signed locals The Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio. Their latest LP is from one Ben Pirani, and if you dig the aforementioned names and are a consider yourself a connoisseur of neo-soul you need to hear this one, new sounds that sound so vintage; horns, strings, voice and all.

Loretta Lynn Wouldn't It Be Great

After recording music for almost 60 years, one would certainly forgive Loretta taking a break, but she’s still working. Her new record is great, and her years sound great on her voice. This is still classic country, her still-strong voice is backed by pedigreed bluegrass players, and the songs are stories full of feeling and heartbreak. Country music royalty.

Mountain Man Magic Ship

Contrary to the expectations of the name, Mountain Man is a trio of young women from Vermont. It’s thick with playful harmonies, as these three voices mix in a magical way. It’s a wild new twist on the DNA of ageless rural mountain music, very spare with plenty of sonic space for the trio’s distinctive group vocalizations.

Tom Petty An American Treasure

Not so much a hits collection as a collection highlighting unsung favorites by those close to the artist and some unreleased gems, this is a way to hear Tom Petty from a little different angle. He’s certainly one we’ll miss. RIP Tom.

Don Cherry Home Boy, Sister Out

The WeWantSounds label resisues a rare LP from Don Cherry's later, further "out-there" records of the late 1970s and 80s. Produced at the ground zero of the Paris / African diaspora, Studio Caroline, by Ramuntcho Matta (son of surrealist painter Roberto Matta), "Home Boy, Sister Out" finds Cherry at his most expressly fusion focused, and funkiest. Supported by a kaleidoscope of artists from the 1980's Paris scene, where funk, jazz, and new wave mingled with sounds from Africa, Jamaica, and Latin America, this album offers a unique window into the era's pan-cultural meeting of worlds. All realized with contributions from French post-punk muse Elli Medeiros, avant poet and artist Brion Gysin, and Senegalese drummer Abdoulaye Prosper Niang of Afrofunk legends, Xalam.  

Rayland Baxter Wide Awake

Contemporary roots rocker Rayland Baxter is taking some major steps forward on his new record Wide Awake. It’s at spots rocking, twangy, soulful, introspective, and melodic. Rolling Stone nails it when they say it’s “a catchy collection of pop hooks that mix Beatles melodies with a bottom-end groove torn from the Stax Records playbook.” We like those things!