indie music artists

It is increasingly typical of music to make itself available without a major label contract. Musicians have the technology and the means of distribution in keeping with today. Downloads, Spotify, etc. make it easy to be an indie music artist. By definition, not on a major label.

Neal Francis

Neal Francis

Liberated from a self-destructive past and born anew in sobriety, Francis has captured an inspired collection of songs steeped in New Orleans rhythms, Chicago blues, and early 70s rock n’ roll. His music evokes a bygone era of R&B’s heyday while simultaneously forging a new path on the musical landscape. Colemine Records

 

“The reincarnation of Allen Toussaint.” Craig Charles, BBC Radio 6

“Think New Orleans meets the Midwest with a little bit of California sun shining in the background.” -TwinCitiesMedia.net

“There’s a good chance you’ll have heard of Francis by the time the year is over…classic Funk, Soul and R&B.” Cincinnati CityBeat

“…gleefully mired In 70s style funk.” – NPR

“Soulful style…uplifting vibe…” – Dusty Groove

 “Instant Americana-funk classic…R&B, blues and touches of gospel and good old fashioned funk merge into pure beauty and soul here, making the appetite and excitement for whatever Francis does next all the more intense.” – Record Crates United

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The Cactus Blossoms

The Cactus Blossoms

“Hey baby, do you wanna take a trip with me? / I’ve got a feeling there might be a silver lining all around.” So begins One Day, the captivating new album from critically acclaimed Minneapolis duo The Cactus Blossoms. Written and recorded during the COVID-19 pandemic, the record explores the tension between optimism and despair that’s defined much of the past few years of American life, examining the power (or naïveté, depending on your perspective) of positive thinking in the face of chaos and uncertainty. The songs here are tender and timeless, with straightforward arrangements centered around brothers Jack Torrey and Page Burkum’s airtight harmonies, and the performances are warm and intimate to match, delivered with a soulful, ’70s-inspired palette of playful Wurlitzer, breezy guitars, and muscular percussion.

The Cactus Blossoms broke out nationally in 2016 with their JD McPherson-produced debut, You’re Dreaming. Dates with Kacey Musgraves, Jenny Lewis, and Lucius followed, as did raves from the New York Times and NPR, who praised “the brothers’ extraordinary singing.” The band was further catapulted into the spotlight in 2018, when David Lynch tapped them to perform in the return of Twin Peaks, and continued to build on their success with their 2019 sophomore LP, Easy Way, which led Rolling Stone to laud the duo’s “rock-solid, freak of genetics harmonies.” High Road Touring

If you love the harmonies of the Everly Brothers, do not miss listening to The Cactus Blossoms. Brothers, they are.

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The Record Company

The Record Company

The Record Company is an American rock band from Los Angeles. The members are Chris Vos, Alex Stiff, and Marc Cazorla. Their music is influenced by blues musicians like John Lee Hooker, early punk bands like The Stooges, and rock bands like The Rolling Stones. Wikipedia

These rising stars have been riding up the charts with their latest release Play Loud.

Below is an excerpt from an excellent article featured in RELIX…where Music meets Journalism

From Play Loud’s first notes, it’s quite evident that something has changed. The raw, bluesy feel that lined The Record Company’s first two albums is no longer there; instead, there’s a rock[1]and-roll swagger that shines through. It’s energetic in ways that feel more apt for arenas instead of the home-studio recordings that often looked inward. On the album’s opener “Never Leave You,” Vos laments being a bit lost, searching for answers, finding solace in the sun. It’s a simple song about relationship confusion, but it sets the tone for Play Loud: The music here is catchy as hell. The single “How High” is an anthemic number, driven by Stiff and Cazorla’s thumping rhythms. At times, it feels like a pure adrenaline rush, especially when the chorus asks listeners to consider “how high do you want to fly”—in an aspirational way.

That’s not to say that their past is completely devoid on Play Loud. “Today Forever” is a slow, bluesy number that finds Vos passionately declaring to a lover that a great move would be to run away for “a day that will last forever.” It’s grand gesture thinking, but that’s the running thread throughout Play Loud—be yourself, take a chance, do it with some gusto.

Most of the songs were written pre-pandemic, but the Play Loud recording sessions took place in the spring of 2020. Unexpectedly, the lyrics seem to take on a new life once they started laying down the tracks, particularly “How High,” which seems to touch on themes relating to recovery.

“We were in a new, challenging time,” Vos says. “But at my core, as a human, I was back to being a 14-year-old kid sitting on the edge of my bed, playing guitar because I had nothing else to do today. The only thing on my mind was music. It was the only thing that would make me feel better, making the record. It became the absolute focal point of our lives. That was unexpectedly positive in a field of a lot of negativity. That was one area where we did benefit from being isolated. These songs for me were very emotionally profound. We’d written a lot before [the pandemic] but, all of a sudden, you’re taking it into the studio, and you’re singing this song—and this life, it means something different. We all have a relatable struggle. We all didn’t see our moms and dads for a long time. We all didn’t see our friends for a long time. That’s something we all share.”

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Steve Forbert

Steve Forbert

Samuel Stephen “Steve” Forbert is an American pop music singer-songwriter. Bob Harris of BBC Radio 2 said Forbert has “One of the most distinctive voices anywhere.” His 1979 song “Romeo’s Tune” reached No. 11 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and No. 13 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary Chart. Wikipedia

Latest release – Early Morning Rain — In Steve’s own words: 

“For the past few years things have been extremely hectic–nonstop issues and distractions. Now we’re trying to cope with a full-on pandemic – the very kind of contagious thing we studied back in history class! My new record is my idea of rather a  “breather”.  I’ve released 20 studio albums of original material by now and I’m taking my time writing more  songs…but this EARLY  MORNING RAIN “cover” album is a what you might call an “easy assignment” for  Americana/folk music fans. You don’t have to study new chapters here, just enjoy these renditions of songs you already know and probably love!”

For more video variety vist Steve Forbert on social media.

And check out his book:

Big City Cat: My Life in Folk Rock

 

John Prine

Read Obit from Rolling Stone Magazine

John Prine

was an American country folk singer-songwriter. He has been active as a composer, recording artist, and live performer since the early 1970s, and is known for an often humorous style of country music that has elements of protest and social commentary. His legacy is being noted in every corner of the globe. Evidenced by the hundreds of recording on Facebook and Youtube by musicians covering his songs almost daily since his passing from Covid-19 in April 2020.

Check out long time lead guitarist Jason Wilber

 

Scary Pockets

Scary Pockets

An Incredible Cover Band From The LA Music Scene

Scary Pockets are a dynamic funk band formed from the LA music scene (Los Angeles, USA). The band consists of Ryan Lerman and Jack Conte who are joined by a continuously rotating line up of quality musicians to form Scary Pockets.

Ryan Lerman spent his twenties touring as a bassist for the American singer-songwriter, Ben Folds. He also has performed as a guitarist for Micheal Bublé and as a musical director for John Legend. A very impressive back catalog of performance history. The other half of Scary Pockets, Jack Conte, is an American musician, singer-songwriter, disc jockey, entrepreneur, and filmmaker. When these two talented individuals mix their skills together, along with some of the best session musicians from the LA music scene, the results are phenomenal.

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Samantha Fish

Samantha Fish

A blues musician from Kansas City, Missouri, Samantha Fish impressed industry professionals as a teenager before scoring her first Billboard blues number one in her mid-twenties. Fish grew up in a musical family with a variety of genres, including a steady diet of classic rock radio. Her father played guitar and would sometimes jam with friends at home. Young Samantha started out as a drummer but switched to guitar at the age of 15. As a teen, she would sneak into local blues landmark the Knuckleheads Saloon to hear touring musicians, and she began sitting in with them from time to time after she became legal at 18.

Girls with Guitars In 2009, Fish recorded the live album Live Bait as the Samantha Fish Blues Band, and the rock-edged guitar work brought her to the attention of Ruf Records. The label featured her alongside Cassie Taylor and Dani Wilde on the 2011 release Girls with Guitars, which featured covers of the Rolling Stones and the Steve Miller Band as well as original material from the three guitarist/singer/songwriters. Later that same year, Fish released her solo debut, Runaway, also with Ruf Records. It was produced by mentor and frequent collaborator Mike Zito.

Black Wind Howlin' She saw her first chart success with her sophomore LP, Black Wind Howlin’, also produced by Zito. It hit the Billboard Heatseekers chart and reached the Top Ten of the blues albums chart upon release in 2013. She followed it with Wild at Heart in 2015, which became a blues number one. In 2017, she returned with her fourth studio album, Chills & Fever. Recorded in Detroit with members of the Detroit Cobras it featured covers of obscure pop and soul tunes.

Also in 2017, Fish issued Belle of the West, recorded in Missouri with Luther Dickinson and featuring musical contributions by guitarist/harmonica player Lightnin’ Malcolm, former-Squirrel Nut Zipper Jimbo Mathus, violinist Lillie Mae Rische, and others. The album helped the guitarist pick up a 2018 Blues Music Association award for Contemporary Female Artist of the Year. Fish‘s seventh studio album, Kill or Be Kind, arrived in 2019 and found her working with producer Scott Billington in Memphis.

Artist Biography by Marcy Donelson

(For all “red links” above, please use back button to return here – see AllMusic.com to browse their site)

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Band of Heathens

Band of Heathens

Performance Video — Heaven Help Us All

When The Band of Heathens decided to dub their sixth studio album of original material Stranger (its first since 2017’s Duende), the veteran band, formed in Austin, TX nearly 15 years ago, had no idea how prophetic that title would turn out to be. Although the name references the famed existential Albert Camus novel and Robert Heinlein’s sci-fi classic Stranger in a Strange Land, it also touches on the “strangers” who make up the band’s loyal fan base, who supported the band during this period with all touring canceled.

As co-founder Ed Jurdi acknowledges, it is certainly an unusual time to release a new album. “The strangest,” he says. “Maybe no time stranger. Since we started, there have been sweeping, revolutionary changes in the music business, but, in this global pandemic, we’re just a microcosm.”
“We’re really fortunate that we have been able to turn directly to our fan base during the pandemic,” adds fellow co-founder Gordy Quist. “The last few months we’ve spent four nights a week live-streaming personal private concerts to fans, and one night a week publicly live-streaming with the whole band Zooming in from their respective homes in California, Texas, North Carolina and Tennessee. At first it seemed very strange until
these walls started coming down and we realized how connected we are by the fabric of music.”

Extending the metaphor of Stranger even further. The Band of Heathens traveled to another city, Portland, OR, with a brand-new producer, Tucker Martine [The Decemberists, My Morning Jacket, Modest Mouse, Camera Obscura], and the result is something different – a more airy, intimate atmosphere, with added emphasis on songcraft and intricate arrangements set in a spacious sonic landscape that reinvents the band’s sound. These are songs stripped of pretense, but teeming with the emotion borne of personal experience, as has been The Band of Heathens’ method from the very start. Stranger moves off into a new place, but still echoes the group’s artful songwriting and multi-layered narrative observations.

The Stranger was released in 2020 and is a top ten roots rock album riding high in the charts.

 

Why Classic Rock Bands Will Never Go Away

In the early years of classic rock, the fears rotated around whether it will last into mortality. Would people get tired of listening to Zeppelin, the Stones, Skynyrd, and Aerosmith? But over the years, it hasn’t happened. In fact, the music continues to be very strong. As any researcher on the radio about how classic rock will continue to score in perceptual studies. To this day, it’s still popular. Roaming the Arts helps you find classic rock bands all across the US.

Classic Rock Bands

Classic rock still goes on through being in movies, TV, and soundtracks. The overexposure caused worry in the media, if it would detract from the music appeal. In fact, the iconic songs are now all over popular films and television shows for new generations to enjoy. The selection of anthems in TV has helped make brands what they are today. For example, Cadillac  resuscitated themselves with Led Zeppelin’s “Rock and Roll” as their background music. 

The legendary bands have continued to tour among the new music leaders every year for box revenue. Markets big and small throughout the US, classic rock continues to tour, and delighting millions of fans, original and many news ones.

What happens then when classic rock fans mourn the passing of icons like David Bowie, Prince, and Glenn Frey? And down the road, when key members of great bands pass on?

Surprisingly, nothing.

Through the passing and mourning of band members, the music continues to go on a successful tour with different members of drums or bassists.

Journey has survived the loss of it’s singer, Steve Perry, and with several other replacements. Music doesn’t just die with the musician, it keeps going. In this case, Journey has kept going and done fine without him.

So when Glenn Frey passed away, dark thoughts about the end of the Eagles came to fruition about who would replace him during the summer festival? The revival would be saved by Vince Gill, the country legend who performed for an Eagles tribute album.

It’s also safe to assume that the long-time Eagles manager Irving Azoff will find ways to keep the band in the forefront, having negotiated and navigated crises over the decades. This also keeps the classic rock alive in one of the classic bands.

Classic Rock Will Won’t Die

Roaming the Art is a comprehensive index of books and authors, bands and musicians, and a selection of visual art. We help you find your favorite classic rock bands in the US. We also have rock to folk, americana to blues, and artists both new and storied careers. 

Each new post is a gateway to follow your favorite artists, some you have heard of, some you have not, or some known but forgotten. We have constant videos, links, and websites to create a true Arts browser. 

We are constantly evolving with features of new music and connections and discoveries focused on Indie, Roots, Americana, Blues, and Alternative music. Check out our website to find artists and classic rock bands.

Nataniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats

Nataniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats

Nathaniel David Rateliff is an American singer and songwriter based in Denver, whose influences are described as folk, Americana and vintage rhythm & blues. Rateliff has garnered attention with Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, the soulful R&B combo he formed in 2013. Wikipedia

When you hear the word Indie, what picture comes to your mind? Maybe someone with long hair, calmly stringing an acoustic guitar and looking sad. They are easily seen as artistic, soft-spoken singers who recite poems in a gentle alto tone. This image of Indie music artists has a lot of historical steepness, but how do you describe music artists in Indie? With Roaming the Arts, all your confusion and controversy become a thing of the past. Read on to learn more about male and female indie pop artists.

Who Are Indie Music Artists

The term ”Indie” is used as an abbreviation to represent ‘Independent’. It implies that the producers of this music genre are independent of any commercial record label. Categorizing indie music artists as being independent singers of many genres is different from the ancient method of describing Indie, looking at musicians like Mac Demarco and Tame Impala. They are a group of alternative rock musicians, whose music genre has evolved into Indie rock. And although most Indie artists are classified as alternative rock, it has caused a bit of controversy whereby many independent rock artists don’t collaborate with independent labels. Many independent music artists don’t belong to a single music genre or style, and they also make categorized self-published music that you can categorize.

Why Is The Genre Called Indie?

Indie music is a product of strong common musical threads that has existed between many artists through the years. This music genre is poetic and introspective and this background dates back to frontiers like Bob Dylan the Nobel Laureate and other similar musicians. Although the music artists in Indie are termed independent, they often do not have a streamlined music genre. Other musicians like Nick Drake gave Indie music the dreariness it is characterized with. The demure and subtle disposition of Indie music was the formative aspect of the business.

Popular Indie Music Artists 

There are lots of singers in Indie music that define the genre and music style. Dylan and Drake belong to a group of Proto-Indie experts and they paved the way for new musicians who expanded the genre to what it is today. Musicians like Elliot Smith, Nirvana, and other first-hand Indie singers still set the pace. The likes of Foals, Coldplay, Frank Ocean, Radiohead, Pavement, The Maccabees, Wiz Khalifa, The Cults, and Billie Eilish. The list is endless, and you’ll be amazed at some music artists in Indie. In the end, whether your favorite artist is Indie or not, music is about the soul. When you don’t have words to express yourself, music does it. But with a deeper understanding of the historical aspect of Indie music, you’ll better appreciate the songs.

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