Hot off the heels of his recognition by The Grammy Awards Committee in 2016 in the “Best Traditional R&B Performance” and “Best R&B Song” categories for his single “For Realski’s,” New York based Singer/Songwriter Mick Hayes has released the Official Music Video for his newest single, “Hard 2 Explain,” originally premiered on Huffington Post.
Please take a second to read our recent interview with Mick Hayes. And go to his website, www.mickhayesmusic.com, to get links to purchase his music and check out the latest news and tour dates as they come.
I usually like to ask if music was always something you knew you wanted to do, but in reading about you, it is a no brainer. Were you the kid who was showing up all the other kids at the school talent shows?
Hey Christy, you have uncovered a few funny stories there! First one goes back to when I was 9 years old I was in the school talent show playing guitar and singing a song I wrote. I had a neighborhood friend who played drums and we rehearsed the song as a duo. That night in the wings of the stage, he backed out because of stage freight. LIKE, with his drums already set up on stage. So, I walked out with my shoulder length hair and black Members Only jacket and did my song alone. The second one goes back to when I was 17 years old. I’m from a smaller town in NY and in our High School there weren’t to many musicians so age really didn’t play a factor. I had a close friend who was two grades ahead of me and when he graduated, he asked me to accompany him at his college talent show. We absolutely brought the house down and won the cash prize. Later that evening was my first dorm room party experience.
Was there ever anything else that peaked your interest, or has it always been music?
Yes, actually I have been working on cars since I was 11. That was my initial goal to build muscle drag cars, actually my senior quotes say nothing about my desire to be a professional artist. One of my parents told me at a young age that being a “recognized artist” was like trying to win the lottery. Well, today I’d like to think that I did win the lottery cause truthfully, I can’t believe some of the things music has done for me.
You have shared stages with some impressive acts. Was there any time specifically that you were completely star struck?
Yes, two in fact! When on stage with Stevie Wonder, you think to yourself “hey I’m on stage with Stevie Wonder” what a career accomplishment and then whenhe opens up his mouth and sings a riff there’s a mind-blowing moment when you remember every time you heard that voice in your life and you can only thank God for such an opportunity. You can see it on one of the videos. I literally throw my hands up in the air and look upward. The other would be while I was on stage with Steve Vai and his band getting some songwriting advice on an original song I was stuck on. About 5 mins later he and his band were playing my song and helping me harvest the melody line. That’s a really special moment. The song ended up being “Discovery Divine” on my 2016 GUITAR&B CD.
Do you have any plans to tour anytime soon? If so, where would you like to go?
I’ve got some more writing and recording to do at the moment, the goal for me is September. I’m working locally, regionally and doing fly dates for the next fewmonths. I hopefully want music to take me all over the world one day. Europe, Japan and South America are in my immediate hopes! Also, Maine, Washington State and Texas are “unconquered” states for me, I have to get there eventually.
I saw the nod from The Grammy Awards Committee, was that a surreal moment?
It really was because it was a song that I let get the better of me. That song (For Realski’s) went way over budget. It was a big production/throwback tune where Irented a B3 organ and Leslie speaker cabinet, paid for horn charts and a 4-piece horn section and multiple other costs including documentary video. When it came out as a digital only release, the sales were very low in the first 6 months. I did all I could at that time, but eventually pulled back on the heavy promotion, thinking maybe I was being too in your face about it with people. Then someone submitted that song for nomination in 2 different categories and I was like whoa! Unfortunately, it only made it to round 2 out of 4, but that’s a HUGE pat on the back and I intend to keep trying!
Since the release of the video for Hard 2 Explain, what can we expect next from you?
Another single/video release is being discussed possibly with some special guests and then a new CD release in September-ish of 2017. I have a trip to Nashville thismonth to meet some people and possibly another if I’ll attend the Summer NAMM show in June. It’s a great time to follow me on Twitter/Facebook and on my website at MickHayesMusic.com. This way you’re along for the ride.
Please let everyone know where they can pick up your music.
My music is available on iTunes. If you are old school like me and prefer a CD, please buy from MickHayesMusic.com. My last CD GUITAR&B is currently ON SALE the entiremonth of April.
New York singer/songwriter Mick Hayes is looking to bring rock n’ roll back to its soulful beginnings in a big way; continually evoking a classic sound more akin to 70s R&B. In a seemingly effortless blend of rock and soul, Hayes’s sound is at once nostalgic and fresh, from his arena rock guitar style to his sensual yet commanding lead vocals, Mick’s music transcends the boundaries of genres. – Chris Bianchi – Huffington Post
Music carries a different meaning for each of us. We all long to hear those songs that can bring us back to the roots of true American artistry; when it was about who we are, where we’ve been, and where we were heading. The kind of music you heard from the backseat of your parents’ station wagon, full of life and originality, harkening back to its beginnings while still being fresh and new. That’s where Mick Hayes comes in today. He melds our history, our present, and creates the future of the genre with his somehow familiar yet innovative sound influenced by styles from across America.
Having been recognized by The Grammy Awards Committee in 2016 in the “Best Traditional R&B Performance” and “Best R&B Song” categories for his single “For Realski’s,” Mick is looking forward to what the future brings.
Hattiesburg, Mississippi-based Power Pop / Alternative Rockers Paul Johnson and The About Last Nights have released the Official Video their single, “Burn It Down.” Originally premiered on Relix, “Burn It Down” is the first single off of their forthcoming, debut EP, Give Up The Ghost, due Spring 2017.
We recently interviewed Paul Johnson about the new release and the band. Check out out interview:
How has the feedback been in the new EP so far?
We have released our first single, and music video for our single “Burn It Down” independently. So, it’s an up hill climb for any band trying to blaze a trail on their own. I’ve been very happy with the feedback so far, and look forward to the full EP release on May 1, 2017. We want folks to give this band a chance. It’s only a matter of getting in their face, playing live, and making our music available.
How long have you been making music? And have you always known that music was what you wanted to do?
I have known I wanted to make music since I was very young. I fell in love with it very early, and would sing, and dance around my house. I started my first garage band while I was still in high school. No-one knew how to play, but me. They all smoked weed while I wrote songs. It never went anywhere.
If you weren’t a musician, what career path do you think you would be following?
If I wasn’t doing music any job where I was able to still live life, and not be a slave to cooperate America while still paying bills would work for me.
We have dear friends from Hattiesburg who are musicians, so we know that not every musician from that area has the “Southern Rock” sound. Did you find that was a difficult stereotype to get out from under, or was it a non-issue?
It’s sometimes very difficult to understand the climate of any city. It’s a collage town so taste change rabidly as each passing day. I started “The About Last Nights” with the idea that we were gonna be different. We are not a collage band, we aren’t a cover band, and we aren’t folk or bluegrass. That puts us in a very small demographic, but that’s okay, we love being the underdogs, and making everything we do count for something.
How do you describe your sound to people who haven’t heard your music?
Rock n’ Roll… Power Pop with the emphasis on the power. High energy power pop with an emotive attitude.
Do you have any plans to tour to promote the new album? If so, hopefully there will be an Oklahoma stop in there.
We do plan to tour for this album, we can’t wait to get on the road, and give people something different. We hope to hit Oklahoma for sure.
Please let everyone know where they can pick up the new album.
Our current single is available on iTunes for download as well as all popular streaming services. The “Burn It down’ video is on Youtube, and we encourage everyone to check it out.
Check out the video for “Burn It Down”
Paul Johnson & The About Last Nights may be from Mississippi, but this isn’t your traditional “southern rock. Singer/Songwriter Paul Johnson and Drummer Zack Lewis had a vision in mind, which was to play songs people want to sing, a kind of “Power Pop”, with the emphasis on “Power.” They unified on the principle of a “song first, honest music” mentality. High-energy rock n’ roll that draws from their influences like Cheap Trick and the Foo Fighters and at times the band recalls the performances of Weezer and Sloan in full-on rock mode, but never neglecting the art of the power balled. This is a band with a purpose, which is to make great music and have fun doing it and their live show prove that with reviews like:
Potent AC/DC-ish riffage kept aloft by crisp Tom Petty-ish harmonies, a passel of radio-ready rock songs built to appeal to everyone from fans of Pyromania-era Def Leppard, the anthemic paces of Smashing Pumpkins as well as the music that erupts from Active Rock radio today . — Mik Davis,The Chronical
Passion, the new music, and Live show are an example of that! I look forward to seeing/hearing people’s reaction to this great music from this great Rock n’ Roll band! – Kevin Mckay, WKSM.COM, 99ROCK
Their Debut Album\EP Give Up The Ghost is on the way. Their new single and music video “Burn It Down” will be released March 2017. Recorded in Atlanta, Georgia at RCRD Recording Studios and engineered by Dan Dixon (Pls Pls, The dropSonic) with 1st engineer Patrick McConkey, and produced by Tuk Smith of The Biters. The band’s debut video and first single, “Burn It Down” was directed by Rahim aka “Video Rahim“, with videographers Chance White, Matthew Hurley 2nd, and Ashley Simpson as Producer. Special effects makeup and creature by Shane Morton from Silver Scream FX Lab.
Go to www.pauljohnsonmusic.com to keep up with news and info as well as links to social media sights.
Blacktop Mojo, from Palestine, TX, is set to release their new album “Burn the Ships” on March 10th, 2017 0n Cuhmon Records. To say these guys are great would be an extreme understatement. I honesty have not heard an album this good in a long time. There is a reason why these guys won the contest to open for Bon Jovi at the Dallas stop of the “This House Is Not For Sale” Tour. The album open with the song called “Where the Wind Blows”, and it is a great introduction into what you are going to get throughout this album.
In my opinion, most bands now a days cannot pull off a good ballad. The song “Prodigal” is the first ballad on this album, and it is phenomenal!! The vocals in this song are out of this world. This song is everything you would want from a ballad. The last song on the album, “Underneath”, is the other ballad, which just proves that Matt’s vocals are no joke, and this band can pull off anything.
The song “8000 Lines” has a laid back and cool vibe to it. “Pyromaniac” kicks ass with its slow intro and the progression into the heavier chorus. They cover Aerosmith’s “Dream On” on this album as well. They stuck with the original arrangement of this song with just enough of their own stamp on it, that you want to listen to it over and over.
This 13 track album has it all. You would be hard pressed to find a single bad song on this one.
Blacktop Mojo is made up of: Matt James–Vocals, Ryan Kiefe– Lead Guitar/Vocals, Kenneth Irwin–Rhythm Guitar/Vocals, Nathan Gillis-Drums, and Matt Curtis-Bass.
“If Soundgarden and Lynyrd Skynyrd were to take a roll in the hay, nine months later, out would pop Blacktop Mojo.”
Formed in September 2012, armed with a simple demo and a dream, they set out to play as many shows as they could, touring and sharing the stage (with the likes of Aaron Lewis, Saving Abel, & Puddle of Mudd, among others.) During that time, Blacktop Mojoself-released their first studio album ‘I Am’ back in 2014. Time has not been wasted since their debut album release. Everything on this journey has led them to this most important moment in their career. The band’s latest offering, “Burn The Ships” is an instant rock n roll masterpiece. Featuring the soon to be classic songs Where The Wind Blows and Dog On A Leash. Produced by Philip Mosley and mixed and mastered by Austin Deptula. This latest album release will launch Blacktop Mojo into the elite company of some of the great rock bands of all time.
Check out the band’s website www.blacktopmojo.com for more information, including links to their social media pages, merch store, and a link to pre-order “Burn The Ships”.
After spending the last several years living, performing and thriving in the greater Los Angeles, CA area, punk-influenced French-American rock band SINNER SINNERS – founded by husband and wife duo Sam and Steve Thill – have incontrovertibly found their groove. After marching their way onto the national scene in 2014 with the release of their raucous, aggressive Nic Jodoin-produced (Black Rebel Motorcycle Club) second full-length, XI, SINNER SINNERS return in 2017 with Optimism Disorder – an auditory Molotov cocktail exploding with the intensity of early ’80s hardcore fused with an incendiary ’70s goth punk ethos.
Further exploring the remote reaches of their experimental skillset, Optimism Disorder is set lyrically in front of a sunny backdrop of societal hypocrisy. The 11-track album grabs you by the neck with the swinging new track, “California”.
We were lucky enough to be able to interview Steve with Sinner, Sinners. Please check out the interview below. And check out their music. Head over to their website at www.sinnersinners.com to find all their news, merch, and links to their social media sites. Let’s show them some love.
1. Where did the name Sinner Sinners come from?
When we started out we had a song called Sinner Sinners, it’s kind of a tribute to Damned Damned Damned which is one of our favorite records. It also worked with our initials Sam and Steve. And more obviously since we don’t believe in any divinities and a lot of our songs are about this, it most likely makes us sinners to religious people.
2. I read that you both met in junior high. Were you both already into music at that point?
We were 15 years old and we were already going to lots of shows and spending a lot of time at the local record store, butI was just starting to learn guitar, it came a lot later.
3. What was it that made you decide music is the path that you wanted to follow in life?
The city we were living in when we started out was somewhat of a big hub for music, we were going to a lot of shows and somehow all of our friends and everyone we knew were in bands . In a small town of the french country side there’s really not much to do but play music, so it came naturally and it kept us out of trouble.
4. If you weren’t in the music business, what career path would you have followed?
Honestly that’s not something we ever thought about, we never really had a plan B, if we didn’t have a band we’d probably be working in a venue or something related to music anyway.
5. When it come to writing music, it is a continuous process, or do you set aside time to write new material?
It’s a pretty long and lonely process. I write all the songs, so I usually start by a guitar or bass riff, demo stuff at home and tweak it for months. It takes me a while to write all the parts because I try as much as possible to harmonize everything, both guitars, the bass, the keys and the vocal melody…coming back to the same song sometime 50 times, some of these songs took me years to complete and I dumped well over 40 songs ideas in the process.
6. How would you describe the new album “Optimism Disorder” to people?
It’s a mix of all the kinds of music we are into, it’s influenced by 60s garage rock, early glam, psychedelia, soul, hardcore, early punk rock…It was written and recorded during a very hard time in our lives, writing and recording worked as an escape and kind of a therapy for us and even though it sounds very dark, it was made with a lot of love.
To put it in situation, let’s say you’re having a party, it’s the end of the night, you want everyone to leave but you don’t own Pornography by the Cure, put on Optimism Disorder, problem solved. Also, we guarantee it will ruin your day in just 30mn.
7. I saw you are heading to Europe to tour in a couple weeks. Do you have any plans for a tour in the U.S.?
Absolutely we are trying everything we can to tour the U.S. We really want to be able to stop in every state, we’re crossing all the fingers we have and hope we can make it happen this year.
8. How do you go about choosing the musicians that you play with? Do you use the same ones each time?
Usually it’s because we’re friends or friends of friends. We try as much as we can to bring in people from different musical background together, if we’re gonna play some punk rock, we want to be sure that no one in the band comes from a punk rock background, if that makes sense.
The format of the band can be confusing because Sinner Sinners is actually two separate entities.
First there is the recordings, it starts with us two as a duo. We record all the guitars, bass, vocals, keys by ourselves and then we bring in friends to feature on the record, different drummers, guitarists, etc…
The other is the live band, which is what matters the most to us. There, we do try to have a constant line up but we did have different band members over the years mostly because we’ve relocated to Los Angeles and because being in a band is very time consuming and costly. Since we all have day jobs, sometimes the band schedule doesn’t work for everyone. Luckily, due to this band format there’s always been an understanding that if someone wants out, the band will keep going and even though it’s always sad to see someone go It’s always been pretty drama free, all of our past band members have all invested a lot of time in this band and it means a lot to us, and the most important is that we’re still all good friends.
9. Please tell us where we can pick up the new album, and can it be pre-ordered?
It will be available on all the digital stores you can think of, itunes, google play, amazon… and available on limited edition colored vinyl via Last Hurrah records here:
Bleachbangs was lucky enough to be allowed to cover the “Not So Silent Night Tour” featuring Drowning Pool, Gemini Syndrome, 9Electric, and Red Tide Rising. We knew as soon as this tour was announced that we wanted to attend a show. Living in Oklahoma City, we chose the Wichita show to attend. This was our first time in The Cotillion in Wichita and this venue is set up perfect for live music. There is not a bad seat in the house.
Unfortunately, I missed Red Tide Rising’s set due to some confusion with my photo pass; however, from what I could hear, and the crowd reaction, they were great. 9Electric and Gemini Syndrome absolutely killed it, as I knew they would.
Then last, but not least, it was time for Drowning Pool to hit the stage. Throwing down the old favorites, mixed with some new tunes from the new “Hellelujah” album, they had the crowd going crazy!! I have to say it was awesome to see that Jasen Moreno was definitely representing Texas with his Buc-ee’s hoodie and his Dallas Cowboys tank top.
These guys definitely know how to work the crowd and get everyone into the show. The best part of the night for me was when they did “Let the Bodies Hit the Floor”, several people from the crowd were invited on stage to help out with the vocals while Jasen went into the crowd and sang the song from the mosh pit as far as I could tell. I lost sight of him once he got into the crowd. Whether he was in the mosh pit or not, it was a pretty bad ass way to make sure he interacted with the fans. None of those fans on the stage or in the crowd will forget that experience.
I urge you to check the dates for the rest of this tour and get to a show if they are stopping anywhere near you. This line up kicked ass from beginning to end. It will be well worth your time.
Scattered Hamlet released their new album “Swamp Rebel Machine” on November 4th via Buck Moon Productions. The new album consists of 11 in your face songs. If you like the southern rock feel, you will definitely like this album. The band has been described as “Imagine Stone Cold Steve Austin with his partners Bo and Luke Duke in a parking lot brawl on a Saturday night set to music!” This analogy fits the band perfectly.
Adam Joad’s vocals could easily be described as a mixture of Taime Downs of Faster Pussycat and Steve Summers of Pretty Boy Floyd on apple pie moonshine. The slide guitar solidifies the Southern Rock sound on the album. My personal favorites on the album would have to be White Trash and Stonewall Jackson. I think all of us can relate to White Trash just a little bit, and the whole crowd would get into this one. And Stonewall Jackson, come on…it starts out with the guy saying he would rather watch Dukes of Hazard than getting laid. This song is very catchy and it just grabbed my attention and you could easily see the crowd singing and throwing down to this song.
The song writing on the album has the fuck you, finger in the air, we are here to party lyrics that would make a Scattered Hamlet and Jackyl tour an over the top party I would want to go to. We have seen Scattered Hamlet a couple times at Rocklahoma and rest assured, wherever these guys are, the party is right there with them.
The band is currently on tour promoting their new album. The tour started in Los Angeles, and will wrap up in Louisville, Ky on November 18th. Check the bands website at www.scatteredhamlet.com to keep up with any new tour date announcements. Check out the bands social media sights as well:Facebook: www.facebook.comScatteredHamlet, Instagram: www.instagram.com/ScatteredHamlet, Twitter: www.twitter.com/ScatteredHamlet, YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/ScatteredHamlet.
Make sure to check out the new album “Swamp Rebel Machine”!!
Clutch recently made a tour stop in Oklahoma City at The Diamond Ballroom for their Psychic Warfare World Tour 2016. They were touring with Zakk Sabbath and Kyng. Unfortunately, Kyng had to cancel their performance due to a family emergency, but the show must go on. And go on it did. Zakk Wylde, Blasko, and Joey C.started things off and wowed the crowd with classic Black Sabbath songs.
The near sell out crowd was more than ready for Clutch to take the stage. This band has some of the most devoted and loyal fans I have ever seen. People came from hours away on a Tuesday night just to watch Clutch play. The band played fan favorites spanning their 25 year career. Neil Fallon’s energy throughout the set was awesome and passionate. You can tell from his performance that he loves performing.
Clutch heads overseas in a few weeks to do a run of dates through mid-December before returning to the U.S. to finish out 2016. Make sure to check out the bands website at www.pro-rock.com to keep up with all things Clutch related. And make sure to catch them when they are on tour. Nothing beats some live, groove Clutch tunes.
Sabaton, the power metal band from Falun, Sweden is currently on tour with Trivium and Huntress. They recently had a tour stop in Tulsa at the Cain’s Ballroom. I must admit that I am new to Sabaton. I was told that their songs and music is based on wars and historical battles, and that peaked my interest. I was intrigued to see how all of this meshed together. I didn’t know what to expect when I showed up for the show.
I was completely mesmerized when Sabaton took the stage. From the first note to the last, they had my full attention. To say I was pleased with what I witnessed would be an understatement. The music is so powerful, yet you can tell the band genuinely has fun on the stage. Joakim has an amazing knack for completely playing to the crowd. When he said jump, the crowd jumped…when he said clap, they clapped. The band mates had such a friendly, lighthearted banter with each other that it made the crowd feel like they were a part of the friendship these guys share.
If you told me Sabaton was coming back to a town close to me tomorrow, I would move mountains to be at that show. They are honestly the best band I have seen in a long time. I am kicking myself for not listening to them sooner. I feel like I have so much catching up to do since I have missed so many years of Sabaton.
Please check out the bands official website www.sabaton.net to check out tour dates, buy Sabaton merchandise, and get links to the bands social media sites.
The band consists of Joakim Brodén-vocals, Pär Sundström-bass, Chris Rörland-guitar and backing vocals, Hannes van Dahl-drums, and Tommy Johansson-guitar and backing vocals.
I was lucky enough to cover the recent Thrice tour stop in Oklahoma City on October 1st. The band is touring to promote the release of their most recent album “To Be Everywhere Is To Be Nowhere”. Thrice is wrapping up the current tour, but stay tuned to their website, www.thrice.net or their Facebook page for any and all news from the band.
The show in OKC was the first time I have seen the band live. I was very impressed. They played hits that had the crowd singing at the top of their lungs. And of course they played their newest single “Black Honey”, which I personally love. Thrice definitely has very devoted fans, as I saw lots of people sporting their Thrice t-shirts and jackets. I always like to pay attention to the crowd and observe how the crowd is responding to the band. I must say, this band has some of the best and most devoted fans I have ever seen. It was awesome to be able to see this band live!! While this tour is almost over, you should keep your eyes open for another tour and make it to a show if they come to your area. It is well worth it.
If you are a fan of Of Mice & Men, Shaman’s Harvest, I Prevail, Sevendust, or Gemini Syndrome, you absolutely have to check out State of Mine. It’s not too often we come across a band that we can’t help but gush over. State of Mine is absolutely one of these bands. From the minute I hit play on track one “Curtain Call” I was hooked. They do an amazing cover of Katy Perry’s “Rise” that you have to hear. “Undertow” is a great, softer, ballad. “Stones” just grabs your attention from the very beginning. If you’re not banging your head on that one there is something wrong with you. The EP ends with a song called “Broke By Monday”, which has a southern rock feel to it and is absolutely the anthem of many people. It is a super fun and kick ass song. I could go on and on about this EP, but you are just going to have to check it out for yourself. In a super tough business it takes something truly special to make it. I hole-heartedly believe State of Mine has that something special and I can’t wait to see and hear more from these guys.
Hailing from Laingsburg, Michigan, State of Mine is a metal band consisting of Vocalist Steven Jodway, Bassist Corey Smith, Drummer Mike Martin, Rhythm Guitarist Matt Martin, and Lead Guitarist Shawn Willett. Organized in 2010, the band hit the local music scene running, playing as support for multiple national acts such as: Black Label Society, Adelitas Way, Saliva, Powerman 5000, Flaw, Otherwise, Soil, 3 Years Hollow, just to name a few.
In 2014 they released their debut, self-titled EP recorded and produced by BJ Perry at Wall of Sound Studio (I Prevail, UFC, INK MASTER, NFL, NCAA), in Memphis, Michigan. After performing for a year, the band decided to go back in studio with a new sound and direction, specifically targeting radio listeners. The new EP, produced by BJ Perry again, went above and beyond expectations, and will guarantee to keep the listener hooked, with huge vocal harmonies, crunchy guitars, powerful bass, and pounding drums. They look to continue on their path toward touring and performing for a national audience.