Today’s New Albums: Nancy Wilson, Leftover Salmon, David Shaw, Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey & More
Each week Release Day Picks profiles new LPs and EPs Team JamBase will be checking out on release day Friday. This week we highlight new albums by Nancy Wilson, Leftover Salmon, David Shaw, Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, Amy Winehouse, Weezer and Van Morrison. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.
Nancy Wilson – You And Me
The Scoop: Heart guitarist and Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Nancy Wilson released her first-ever solo album, You And Me, today via her newly minted label, Carry On Music. “Being off the road last year from touring with Heart, and at home with my good guitars and amps out,” Wilson said in a statement, “I felt like I was once again able to reconnect with my pre-Heart self, my college-girl self, creating poetic, intimate and romantic songs, which pretty much is what I first brought in to Heart.” The record features a healthy mix of originals and covers along with an all-star cast of guest musicians including Guns ‘N Roses bassist Duff McKagan and Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins on the rocker “Party at the Angel Ballroom.” For You And Me’s title track, Wilson teamed back up with longtime collaborator Sue Ennis to pen the acoustic number which sees Wilson speaking to her late mother. Additionally, Nancy included covers of Pearl Jam’s “Daughter,” Simon & Garfunkel’s “The Boxer” featuring Sammy Hagar and Cranberries’ “Dreams” with Liv Warfield (Prince). Wilson also previewed the album last fall with a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “The Rising” and recently shared her tribute to friend Eddie Van Halen, “4 Edward,” which closes the album.
Leftover Salmon – Brand New Good Old Days
The Scoop: Jamgrass progenitors Leftover Salmon are back with Brand New Good Old Days, arriving today via Compass Records. The follow up to 2018’s, Something Higher, Brand New Good Old Days features nine new originals as well as a cover of the Soundgarden classic, “Black Hole Sun,” which opens the album. To preview the LP, LoS shared the title track. As the title suggests, Brand New Good Old Days, sees Salmon doing what they do best, delivering feel-good music to a world that desperately needs it. “It’s a reminder that no matter what kind of trouble we’re in these days, it may not ever be as good as it is right now,” co-founder and guitarist Vince Herman remarked about the title track in a statement. Leftover Salmon also heralded the record with “Boogie Grass Band,” another fitting description of the sound LoS has pioneered over the past 30 years.
David Shaw – David Shaw
The Scoop: The Revivalists frontman David Shaw experienced a burst of creativity when the pandemic began and he found himself off the road at home in New Orleans. Shaw finally turned his attention to a project that’s been brewing for years in recording his debut solo album. The eponymous 12-track LP, out today on his own Yokoko Records imprint, finds Shaw backed by a band consisting of guitarist/vocalist Neal Francis, bassist Mike Starr, drummer PJ Howard and guitarist Chris Gelbuda.
David Shaw was recorded at New Orleans’ The Parlor Recording Studio, a facility he constructed in his backyard. Shaw tapped Jack Splash to produce the LP. While the vocalist/songwriter did aim to focus on uplifting material, he also addressed racial and systemic injustice and inequalities on the hard-hitting track “Promised Land.”
Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey – Winterwood & The Spark That Bled
The Scoop: In 2008, Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey recorded an album, Winterwood, with a lineup of co-founding bassist Reed Mathis and keyboardist Brian Haas, along with drummer Josh Raymer. Mathis left the band shortly after completing the sessions at Winterwood Recording Studios in Eureka Springs, Arkansas and the record was never officially released. During last year’s COVID-19 pandemic caused downtime, Mathis culled through his collection of JFJO recordings, unearthing the Winterwood sessions, which he remixed for proper release today on Royal Potato Family. Mathis also prepped four archival live albums from performances recorded during his stint in the group. The first of those four live releases, The Spark That Bled, is available today and features drummer Jason Smart with Haas and Mathis in 2005 performing three originals as well as several instrumental covers of songs by The Flaming Lips, Bjork, John Coltrane and others. The other three archival JFJO live albums will arrive in June and July. A vinyl version of Winterwood is due in August.
In addition to preparing the albums for release, Mathis also created a mini-documentary detailing the story behind the records:
Amy Winehouse – Amy Winehouse At The BBC
The Scoop: Late singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse is featured on the new live 3-disc compilation, Amy Winehouse At The BBC. Available for the first time on audio-only digital platforms, the collection contains A Tribute To Amy Winehouse by Jools Holland that features Winehouse’s appearances on Later With Jools, including “Stronger Than Me” from her debut performance on the show in 2003. The second part of the release features Winehouse performing live on other BBC programs between 2004 and 2009, pulling from performances at Leicester Summer Sundae, T In The Park, Jo Whiley Live Lounge and The Stables, among others. Also part of the set is Winehouse’s BBC One Sessions Live at Porchester Hall recorded in 2007.
“Jools loved Amy straight away – her honesty as a vocalist, songwriter and Londoner,” said BBC’s Mark Cooper. “Britain has produced a lot of brilliant female singer-songwriters and vocalists in the last decade or so, many from Beth Gibbons to Adele, rooted in older Black American forms, soul and jazz and blues. But there was only ever one Amy Winehouse. She was frank and fresh and haunted. And we miss her.”
Weezer – Van Weezer
The Scoop: Weezer shared their highly anticipated tribute to metal, Van Weezer, today via Crush Music/Atlantic Records. The metal homage from the renowned rockers –produced by Suzy Shin — was supposed to in May of 2020 but the release was pushed back due to the pandemic. Rivers Cuomo and company then went in the opposite direction of metal with their first-ever orchestral album, early 2021’s OK Human. The band did, however, give fans a taste of Van Weezer beginning in 2019 with “End Of The Game” followed by 2020’s “Hero” (a tribute to frontline workers) and “Beginning Of The End.” The band also performed the Van Weezer track “Blue Dream” on an episode of The Simpsons. The new record sees Weezer returning to their metal roots, with a press release noting their influences in the genre: “Rivers was a huge KISS fan; Brian was a big Black Sabbath fan; Pat worshipped at the altar of Van Halen and Rush; Scott loved Slayer and Metallica.”
Van Morrison – Latest Record Project: Volume 1
The Scoop: Acclaimed musician Van Morrison continues his prolific ways with the double album Latest Record Project: Volume 1. Morrison’s 42nd record is out today through Exile/BMG. Van wrote and recorded the majority of Latest Record Project: Volume 1 while riding out the pandemic, a period in which he’s taken aim at government officials over restrictions put in place to protect citizens.
“I’m getting away from the perceived same songs, same albums all the time,” Morrison explained of his latest effort. “This guy’s done 500 songs, maybe more, so hello? Why do you keep promoting the same 10? I’m trying to get out of the box.”
Compiled by Scott Bernstein, Nate Todd and Andy Kahn.