David Schaak

DAVID SCHAAK - 'LOST, ALONE & LONESOME'

David Schaak loves nothing more than great lyrics, loud guitars and old technology, and he brings these long-term loves to a vibrant life through a healthy serving of Southern Americana Rock, as evidenced by ‘Lost, Alone & Lonesome’, the lead single from his impressive debut LP "Meet My Ghosts".

Whether backed by dirty guitars and swirling Hammond organ, or alone on his trusty acoustic guitar, Schaak’s tales of political greed, inequality and mental health sit, in an unnervingly comfortable way, beside the more universal truths of love, loss and loneliness.

In late 2019, David took a clutch of songs and headed into the studio with producer Lee Griffin and engineer Jason Millhouse from Recordworks (Brisbane). All three were holding on to a strict ‘less-is-more’ policy, resisting any unnecessary layering or complexity that would hide the all-important human element. The focus was on simplicity and performance – if they wanted a dirty guitar, then they simply turned it up - loud.

They were joined in the studio by the talented trio of Jen Mize, Brendan McMahon (Tracy McNeil and the Goodlife, Saint Jude) and Marty Smith (Sean Sennett, Wind Up Dolls) who all brought their own particular brand of magic to the sessions. Laced as it is with a blend of Southern Rock, Americana, Country and Rock flavours, smart songwriting and killer guitar – ‘Lost, Alone & Lonesome’ is a strong indicator of what this Melbourne bred, Brisbane based singer-songwriter is all about.

Talking about the story behind Lost, Alone & Lonesome’, Schaak says “There are a lot of songs in the world about heartbreak, but I wanted to write one from the perspective of inevitability. Sometimes a relationship can be over and the actual act of breaking up is merely a formality.  Yes, there’s going to be a fight and then sadness and then loneliness; both parties have experienced it all before and just want it over and done with.

The line in the chorus ‘When you’re finished, can I keep the broken part?’ actually came from something my dad always said about getting old cars repaired. Always get the broken part back because you can probably get it repaired; to use again later – I don’t think there’s a heart on earth that hasn’t gone through a few repairs.

The first time we tracked this song the drums were a lot more straightforward. Trying to find something different to add to it we asked Marty if he could play a more complex drum pattern – apparently this is the only time he’s ever been asked to play more; and yes, he damn well could.”

‘Lost, Alone & Lonesome’ will be available on all major digital platforms on June 30.

Pre-order the song HERE

"Meet My Ghosts" will be out October 2nd 2020.

David Schaak Press kit: CLICK HERE

 

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Van Walker

VAN WALKER 'LONG NIGHT'S JOURNEY TO DAY' | 'WHEN YOU WERE MINE' | 'DRIFTING TOO FAR FROM SHORE'

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Van Walker has always been one to march to the beat of his own distinctive drum, and this year – with all the upheaval it offers, is no exception. The follow-up to lead single ‘Spirit World’ won’t be one, or even two songs, but instead three from his long-awaited solo album "Ghosting".

Recent months in isolation, and with touring and live shows also on a current indefinite hiatus has necessarily changed the way many musicians create and share music; and in this Walker has been no different to his peers. With an altered release plan and tour, Walker is champing on the bit to share his new music and believes there’s no time like the present.

‘Long Night’s Journey To Day’
Long nights journey to day/The price I must pay/For loving you, babe
This track is a cry for forgiveness and regret, but also vigilance and survival. A melancholic sorry note, if you will. Guitar wizard Jeff Lang lends his talents, this time on bass guitar, while Van’s voice shimmers with feeling.

‘When You Were Mine’
Sitting in my old bed ruminating but it ain’t a crime/Thinking ‘bout the future but I wish I was back in time/When you were mine
We all know about powerful memories and the grip they can have on us. Lamenting lost love and musing of better times, Walker doesn’t resist memory’s bitter chains.

‘Drifting Too Far From Shore’
I've lost that spark of passion I always used to have/Don't know where it's gone to or if it's ever coming back/Can't find no direction, tell me what's the reason for/Drifting too far from shore
Here Van explores the sometimes invisibility of depression, trauma and illness that leads to further isolation and abandonment.

Hit the image below to check out the video for ‘Long Night’s Journey To Day’

 

All 3 songs will be available on all digital platforms from June 17.

Pre-save them HERE

‘Ghosting’ will be released on August 28 via Green South Records.

Van Walker press kit CLICK HERE

 

Liner Notes

'LONG NIGHT’S JOURNEY TO DAY'

Van Walker - guitar and vox l Jeff Lang – Bass l Shane Reilly - pedal steel l Brendan McMahon - piano

 

'WHEN YOU WERE MINE'

Van Walker - guitars and vox l Mitch Dillon - bass

 

'DRIFTING TOO FAR FROM SHORE'

Van Walker - guitar and vocal l Jeff Lang - Bass and lead guitar l Matt Walker - Harmonica

 

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Lucille

LUCILLE 'COME ON, FLY'

“… a unique voice and approach to songwriting that is global and wonderous in its expression.” – Triple J Unearthed
“…an eclectic, fascinating artist with considerable talent.” – Jolene, the Country Music Blog
"Hypnotic, disconcerting and beautiful in equal measure" - The Music Network
"An artist showing her true voice" - Independent Australia

‘Come On, Fly’ is the 2nd single and title track from Melbourne singer-songwriter Lucille’s upcoming debut album. The song acknowledges that we as humanity are not learning from history’s lessons, with the cycle of hate, division, and destruction continuing unabated. Lucille explores the notion that there must be a better way.

Lucille, was born in West Berlin, ‘in a city that no longer exists’, which was a place that epitomised division to an almost comic extent. Lucille explains, “they split it with a concrete wall. Neighbours became not only strangers but violent enemies. What a farce. And we look back and say, “how dreadful” but we continue to build walls today – literally and metaphorically. What history tells us though, is that walls never last.” Think Hadrian, the Great Wall of China, The Berlin Wall; any effort spent on building walls now (Palestine/Israel; USA/Mexico) is completely wasted energy. Lucille believes, “if one learns to fly, walls lose their meaning, utterly and completely.”

To view the music video for 'Come On, Fly' - click the image below

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Words and music on this single release, as with all the material on the album, were created by Lucille and produced by multiple ARIA award winner Mitch Cairns (Troy Cassar-Daley, Russell Morris, Glenn Shorrock, Leo Sayer).

Come On, Fly (single) will be available on all major platforms from Monday 11th May.

The album will be released Friday June 26.

 

Liner notes:

Vocals – Lucille | Drums - Jonathan Wright | Upright Bass - Dean Addison | Electric Guitars - Emilio Kormanic | Acoustic Guitars - Shannon Bourne, Mitch Cairns | Dobro - Shannon Bourne | Piano - Mitch Cairns| Wurlitzer - Mitch Cairns | Hammond - Dan Biederman | Backing Vocals - Olivia Nathan, Mitch Cairns, Lucille

Lucille Press Kit  CLICK HERE     

 

 

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Van Walker

VAN WALKER 'SPIRIT WORLD'

I remember every word you said / Or I remember what I misinterpreted / But I remember, how could I forget
Now you're gone, I think I'll lose my mind / Dead and gone, I study evil all the time / I miss you, baby, but I can't bare saying goodbye
So come on in and close the door / Don't stand out in the cold no more / I been waiting oh so long / To have you back where you belong
Close to me, close enough to smell / Close to me, and further from this hell / I love you, baby.... Baby, can't you tell?

 

‘Spirit World’ is the spellbinding lead single from Van Walker’s first solo album in a decade and reminds us once again why he's regarded as one of the finest songwriters in the land by many of his peers and leading critics. From the forthcoming album, "Ghosting", the track is a haunted, mysterious composition - as vulnerable as it is mercurial. Someone is missing someone, and dabbling in the dark arts as a means to bring them back, dead or alive!

The song, like much of the album, is stark and brutally honest, with just bass and fingerstyle acoustic guitar, plus the added spark of Australia's most revered roots musician and no stranger to disturbed folk himself, guitar wizard Jeff Lang, weaving his magic on Dobro between the enchanted lyric of reverie and sorcery. ‘Spirit World’ is released with two B-Side singles ‘Crystal Ball’ and ‘I Gotta Worry’. Check out the video for ‘Spirit World’ below - click on the image.

Purchase ‘Spirit World’ HERE

ABOUT VAN WALKER

Van Walker is a Tasmanian native who's prolific songwriting productivity has seen him described by Rhythms Magazine as “A devoted songwriter…Walker is a much revered, almost cult figure locally.”  Having written over 500 songs across many genres, realising 6 full length albums between 2008 & 2010, a selection of which the Fuse Music Group released in 2012 on the ‘Underneath the Radar’ compilation, prompting Beat Magazine to quip: “If Bob Dylan was born 20 years later and grew up fraternising in Collingwood bars, he would sound like this,” and Mess & Noise to state: "Literary vigour and scathing social commentary, if there is any justice in this world, Underneath the Radar will provoke a radical awareness & appreciation of Van Walker’s songwriting talents."

Since then Walker has been busy touring nationally and internationally, writing and releasing two albums with the power pop outfit The Livingstone Daisies (2013, PBS FM’s Album of the Year) (2014 4.5 Stars The AGE EG) with Liz Stringer, his brother Callan, and Michael Barclay (Paul Kelly), recording ‘Heartbrokers VOL.10’ with Jeff Lang, Ezra Lee & Ash Davies; forming the three piece blues-boogie outfit Goatpiss Gasoline; while also writing and performing as a member of the critically acclaimed Vandemonian Lags stage production.

It’s been a long time, a decade in fact, since Van Walker released an album under his own name.  Thankfully, that’s about to change with the release of "Ghosting", slated for release in August, 2020.  A work of stark beauty and bracingly and sometimes painful honesty, "Ghosting" is a mature cathartic collection of songs welcoming audiences into an intimate, warm-hearted and ultimately redeeming musical journey.

 

‘Spirit world’ Liner Notes:

Words and Music © Van Walker l Van Walker - guitars and vocals l Jeff Lang – Dobro, bass and backing vocals

 

Press Kit - CLICK HERE

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Lucille

LUCILLE 'Kerikeri'

When will the sky be as blue
As blue as it was then when we were up in Kerikeri

Driving up highway one / Winding road towards the sun / Row of skinny legs across the back /
Leave the road use the beach / Pass sunken cars on nature’s street / Ninety miles of freedom in my eyes

'Kerikeri' (out Feb 7) is the lead single from Melbourne based singer-songwriter Lucille’s upcoming debut LP “Come On, Fly”, which will be released on March 27. 'Kerikeri' is about nostalgia and that magical time in childhood where, even if just for a fleeting moment, things felt whole and full of light-heartedness and wonder.

It’s a country song, but not in the way you may imagine – it is country rhythmically, but the vocals and harmonies are unexpected and don't fit the country mould. Instead, there’s almost a jazz-pop feel to the harmonies, with the organic boot stomping and loose, raw guitar sounds creating a relaxed holiday jam feel. The lyric video for 'Kerikeri' features the imaginative imagery we’ve come to expect from Lucille (see previous singles 'The Killing Season' & 'Best Of Me') and captures the sense of wonder and beauty that her childhood holiday haunt holds in the songwriter’s heart. Check it out below.

 

'Kerikeri' is in Northland, the tip of NZ’s North Island, where the weather is warmer than in Lucille’s childhood home of New Plymouth, and it was her family’s perfect holiday destination. As Lucille explains: "Kerikeri is a bit of a gateway to that whole Northland area. There's Ninety Mile Beach which is a national highway. Anyone can use it as a road. If your car breaks down though, by the time you get back to it, it has probably sunk into the sand. When I was a kid, spotting the sunken cars was part of the fun. In the eighties, breaking down was part of travel…at least my family’s cars. There are lots of mandarin orchards up there. Pipis are clam shellfish that live in the tide zone, at low tide you hunt them by spotting their bubbles and you dig them out, or use a pipi harvester which is basically a suction pipe. They are delicious. You go fishing. You eat the fish fresh that day, on a fire on the beach.”

“All in all it is a paradise and looking back to how I felt as a child it was all sunlight. I'm sure most of us have that special place we can think of. It's like a feeling where over time you feel like your vision has dulled, and you can't see the colours like you saw them back then. There was yellow sand, and blue sky like I can't see it now. That is what it feels like anyway.” 

“I call Australia home, but going to NZ also feels like going home. Everything is very familiar to me every time I go back and I have childhood memories from all over the country. I am a dual NZ/Australian citizen.”  


Liner Notes:

Words and Music © Lucille l Vocals – Lucille | Drums - Jonathan Wright | Bass - Mitch Cairns | Acoustic Guitars - Shannon Bourne, Mitch Cairns | Hammond - Dan Biederman | Backing Vocals - Olivia Nathan, Lucille | Piano - Mitch Cairns | Percussion - Jono Wright, Mitch Cairns, Lucille

PRESS KIT - CLICK HERE

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Sara O’Connor

SARA O'CONNOR - 'AIN'T HOME' | 'UPSIDE'

“Dark All Day” is the brand-new album from Sydney singer-songwriter Sara O’Connor. The songs on this eight-track release capture a variety of life experiences and observations of her travels through the Arctic and Antarctic. Once again O’Connor has assembled the impressive co-writing team of Phil Stack (Thirsty Merc) and Terresa Marie Allen, from her EP “Rollin’” that was released earlier this year.

FOCUS TRACKS:
‘Ain’t Home’ (Allen/O’Connor/Stack) – is all about the endless search for feeling connected. After travelling the earth looking for it, Sara has come to realise home is a feeling not a destination. Following her extensive travels and stepping foot on all seven continents looking for where she feels most connected, the songstress is very happy to say that home is definitely here, in Australia and she couldn’t be happier with that! As Sara sings, “sometimes where you start is really where you’re bound”.

‘Upside’ (O’Connor/Stack) – this song was inspired while suffering from road rage one afternoon. Sara remembers muttering words that she wouldn’t want anyone to overhear. This made her think back to when she was a little girl and in a grumpy mood, her Mum would say things like “if the wind changes your face will stay like that” and “turn your frown upside down”. The song is meant to be a fun and uplifting ditty and from the first few bars you can’t help but smile.

The cover artwork for “Dark All Day” was created by Archibald Prize winning artist Wendy Sharpe. Sara, Wendy and her partner Bernard Ollis, met onboard a ship bound for the North Pole. During that journey Wendy and Bernard painted constantly, while Sara stood by in awe, but she was also creating… new music for this album.
Apart from the album artwork there is another magnificent link between Wendy and the album. On the back of the ship one afternoon, Wendy and Sara chatted about what it must be like living in the Arctic during winter when there is 24 hours of darkness. They talked about what it must do to your psyche when it’s dark all day and all night. That moment was the beginning of the title track on the album; ‘Dark All Day’. After that conversation with Wendy, Sara went back to her cabin and wrote the song.

More info about Sara O’Connor:
• A vocalist fronting jazz outfits for 20 years and has performed all over Australia
• Performed at Australian iconic venues including The Enmore Theatre in Sydney, The Tivoli in Brisbane and Melbourne’s Forum Theatre
• Introduced to the genre by her country-loving partner Ben Soutter and to the industry by none other than Melinda Schneider
• Introduced by a mutual musical friend, Melinda took the time to chat long-distance with Sara while at the G’Day USA party in Los Angeles. Sara has high praise for the Golden Guitar winning artist insisting, “I don’t think Melinda realises that she mentored me in that one conversation”.

"DARK ALL DAY" IS OUT NOW | AVAILABLE FROM ALL DIGITAL/STREAMING PLATFORMS

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Brendan McMahon

Brendan McMahon - Only Highs.mp3

BRENDAN MCMAHON 'ONLY HIGHS'

Little darling only highs no more lows
And the hard times - let’s decide that they go
Is this the moment I really hope so
Little darling only highs no more lows

From the delicate opening melody to the searing guitar solo and soaring two-part vocals, ‘Only Highs’ the 2nd single from singer songwriter Brendan McMahon’s forthcoming album "In The Moment", shines. The song tells the story of those moments in a relationship that are powerful enough to alter its course. It’s a heartfelt appeal for starting over and embracing new beginnings. While the initial inspiration was the author’s relationship with his daughter, it’s a song that everyone who has experienced the highs and lows of love and friendship can relate to. Hit below to watch the ‘Only Highs' music video.

 ‘Only Highs’ is the first duet Brendan has ever recorded and features the warm, sweet vocals of Amber Ferraro, who leads Melbourne disco-house band Honey. But it’s not the first time Brendan and Amber have worked together; Amber has provided backing vocals on three of Brendan’s albums. Brendan remembers their time in the studio: “The thought came to me to have Amber sing the lead on one of the lines of the third chorus, she did such an amazing job that I asked if she would sing the whole chorus. Totally a spur of the moment decision that ended up taking the song to a whole new level!”

‘Only Highs’ follows on from first single ‘I Am’ that was released back in May - the alternative country-rock track’s associated video is nearing 8000 views on YouTube. That track found support on ABC Radio’s Saturday Night Country, ABC Country, Good Morning Country, CRN’s Dirt Music and many other outlets around the nation. You can check out the clip for ‘I Am’ here: https://bit.ly/2YBCFrp

Both singles will appear on Brendan’s full-length release “In The Moment” coming in November.

‘Only Highs’ will be available on all major platforms from Tuesday August 13th.

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Laura-Therese Davis

Laura Therese Davis - Rather Live In The Country.mp3

LAURA-THERESE DAVIS WOULD ‘RATHER LIVE IN THE COUNTRY’

For her second single, Laura-Therese Davis proudly admits she’d ‘Rather Live In The Country’. While Laura-Therese grew up in Sydney, she moved to Maclean in the NSW Northern Rivers region in 2015 and she’s never felt more at home. A recent return to the big smoke, purely for career opportunities, has only reinforced this.

The horse-loving singer-songwriter penned ‘Rather Live In The Country’ as a calling back to living on the land. While she’s experienced life in both the city and the country, Laura-Therese believes there’s no better feeling than waking up to a clear sky and a green field with horses. “I have to be in the city a lot for recording and performing but it never feels the same. I literally feel a calling back to the country; I know that’s where I belong”.

The self-taught guitarist who’s been performing since she was just four years old continues, “It’s not always easy to live on the land, so luxury is an analogy for all the mod cons of city vs country living”.

The new single begins with a crisp acoustic guitar to remind us of the simplicity of the country. With a fun, bold, catchy chorus that everyone can sing along to, the upbeat track makes you want to tap your cowboy boots and keep dancing into spring and summer. ‘Rather Live In The Country’ features fellow musician and good friend Mal Eastick - Australia’s premier blues-rock guitarist, who initially found fame in 1970s’ award-winning country-rock band Stars. This is an anthem for all country folk to be proud of where they’re from.

"Champagne and caviar, these things are not for me
Can’t keep a horse in a penthouse, it needs an open field" 

Laura-Therese Davis ‘Rather Live In The Country’, 2018

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Mat Black

Mat Black - Diamond Mine.mp3

Mat Black

Mat Black 'Diamond Mine'

Co-written with Golden Guitar winner Lachlan Bryan, 'Diamond Mine' is the first single from alt-country singer-songwriter Mat Black’s debut LP "Trucker Hats & Heart Attacks". Drawing heavily on a deep connection with Southern Rock and that 'dirt-in-your-ears' sound, the song is a gritty account of the oft-faced disappointments associated with the music world.

"I blew in late last night... my heart was heavy and my pockets light."

The opening line of the track conjures images of disappointment and the fact that the singer's chosen path in life is, more often than not, not a lucrative one. The song goes on to list a number of sacrifices that artists make when trying to reach their goals - or find that treasure at the end of all the hard work.

"There must be sixteen different ways to say, that you ain't gonna buy today"

Sometimes all we need is a 'thanks but no thanks' from media, venues, labels, peers.... instead the repeated silences can weigh us down after a while. Yet we head back time and again to the 'Diamond Mine' that is trying to 'make it' in the music industry. Dirty guitars and a screaming harmonica solo punctuate this track, giving it a definite country-rock feel. This is a song for lovers of Neil Young, Steve Earle and Drive-By Truckers.

The single will be released June 29 on all major platforms, with a Melbourne launch show booked in for the same afternoon at The Old Bar, Fitzroy with special guests Duncan Phillips and Katie Bates. Entry is free, music kicks off from 2.30pm.

“Trucker Hats & Heart Attacks” will be released September 13.

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Brendan McMahon

Brendan McMahon - I Am.mp3

BRENDAN MCMAHON 'I AM'

When you listen to Brendan McMahon’s music you gain a strong sense of the man behind the songs. An inveterate traveller and astute observer, possessed of an enquiring and open mind - these are just some of his personality traits that shine through.

A talented musician and songwriter with over 20 years’ experience, McMahon is not afraid to defy expectation – his music is eclectic, adventurous and blessed with a ‘limitless fluidity’. Having visited over 50 unique and varied countries over the last decade, McMahon’s travel experiences; specifically his observations of history, cultures, people, architecture and nature are at the root of his creativity and songwriting. These themes feature prominently throughout his upcoming LP "In The Moment", due for release in late 2019.

‘I Am’, the first single from ‘In The Moment’ serves as a fitting introduction if you haven’t come across Brendan McMahon previously. This alternative country rock track (out May 28) was ignited from a childhood memory of a failed attempt to run away from the safety and warmth of his childhood home – complete with Huckleberry Finn style pack on a stick - “on my way to a brand new life, nothing to hold me, I just might take a chance” – the adventure might have been thwarted by the cold, dark, windy, rainy night beyond his bedroom window but the urge to travel and explore had been well and truly lit.

Check out the video for ‘I Am’ HERE

‘I Am’ will be available on all major platforms from Tuesday 28th May.

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