Emily Wolfe

The second full-length from Emily Wolfe, Outlier is an album built on exquisite tension: an endless push-and-pull between desire and resistance, determination and self-sabotage, the instinctive need to belong and the urge to strike out on your own. For help in channeling that complexity of feeling, the Austin-based singer/songwriter/guitarist explored and obliterated the boundaries of rock-and-roll and modern pop, mining equal inspiration from the likes of Judas Priest and Ariana Grande in her bold but masterful genre-bending. Produced by Michael Shuman of Queens of the Stone Age and Mini Mansions, the resulting body of work finds Wolfe upending the conventions of each genre, ultimately arriving at a guitar-drenched sound that’s wildly unpredictable and immediately magnetic.

The follow-up to her self-titled debut album (a 2019 release produced by Ben Tanner of Alabama Shakes), which featured the single “Holy Roller,” Outlier came to life in Shuman’s garage in Los Angeles, where Wolfe was joined by her longtime bandmates Evan Nicholson (bass) and Clellan Hyatt (drums). After completing basic tracking for the songs, Wolfe and Shuman layered on new and unexpected textures with the help of programmed drums and beautifully warped synth tones. 

““Outlier” is a different direction for me musically,” says Wolfe.” I wanted to try something new and different. I wanted to step outside of the blues-rock box and see what else could happen. This record is my attempt at crossing genres between classic ’70s rock, ’80s pop, ’90s grunge, and modern pop elements of today. I wanted to see how far I could push my boundaries musically, while still holding onto my integrity as a guitar player first and foremost. This album is a huge indicator of where I’m headed as an artist — my goal is to create well-crafted rock songs with polished pop production, but stay true to myself as a lover of guitar solos.”

If 2021 weren’t busy enough – landing a label deal; Outlier’s release; the launch of her signature guitar by Gibson/Epiphone; multiple TV sync placements; returning to performing and touring; and writing for her next album – the year may pale in comparison to what’s next in 2022.

Zach Person

American recording artist, Zach Person, is the new face of indie rock. Emerging out of Austin, Texas, Person plays loud, raw, and connects with his music fans on a primal sonic level. Only 25 years old, Person has a swagger, talent and grit beyond his years. With the poise of a seasoned veteran on stage and the stylings of a mega star, he commands an audience in seconds.

“Reminiscent of everyone from Elmore James and Duane Allman to The Black Keys and Jack White, Person channels a raw, pure-bred American swagger,” said American Songwriter. “Between the driving beat, Person’s fuzzed-out vocals and the layers of bombastic guitar parts, the tune shows off all the reasons that Buddy Guy once said of Person ‘What else can I say? The young man is hot!’”

His inspirations are varied, and include prolific artists like The Black Keys, Jack White, Chris Stapleton, Jonny Lang, Funkadelic, and Led Zeppelin. With his new project, Zach has created his own take on a contemporary hybrid of blues and rock music, arranged in a pop format.

Person’s self-titled, debut LP dropped on April 2, 2021 and garnered the attention of notable press including American Songwriter, Classic Rock Magazine, American Blues Scene, Guitar World, Premier Guitar, Mojo Magazine, Lyric Magazine, Mercury Magazine, and more.

The overall success of his LP, has led to additional collaborations with international brands like, Amazon, Kendra Scott, ACL Live, Soho House, Kimpton & Fairmont Hotels, and BMI.

Zach is currently on tour in North America, and is scheduled to tour Europe and the U.K. this fall (2022). Stay tuned as Zach will be releasing new singles throughout the course of the year. 

Critically acclaimed British guitarist and singer songwriter, Joanne Shaw Taylor, universally hailed as the UK’s premiere blues rock guitarist, is announcing the release of her seventh studio full-length record The Blues Album on Friday September 17, 2021. Today she also shares a new single, “Let Me Down Easy” along with a companion music video.

The album will be released via Joe Bonamassa’s independent blues label KTBA Records. It was produced and recorded by Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith at Ocean Way Studios in Nashville, Tennessee. The hotly tipped 11-track album features Joanne’s personalised covers of eleven rare blues classics originally recorded by Albert King, Peter Green, Little Richard, Magic Sam, Aretha Franklin, Little Milton, and many more.

The Blues Album, the follow up to 2019’s critically acclaimed album Reckless Heart, features Josh Smith (guitar), Reese Wynans (keyboards), Greg Morrow (drums), Steve Mackey (bass), Steve Patrick (trumpet), Mark Douthit (sax), Barry Green (trombone). Joe Bonamassa plays guitar and sings on the track “Don’t Go Away Mad.” Mike Farris also joins as a special guest on “I Don’t Know What You’ve Got.” “I’d known from the beginning of my recording career that one day I wanted to record an album of blues covers, I just wasn’t sure when the right time to do that would be,” says Joanne. “I’ve always found it far easier to write my own material than come up with creative ways to make other artists’ material my own.”

When the pandemic put the brakes on from musicians from touring during 2020 and most of 2021, Joanne thought it was the right time to head into the studio to record The Blues Album. “I mentioned my new project idea to Joe Bonamassa,” recalls Joanne. “He asked me for my song choices. Immediately he began sending me notes and was texting me song suggestions.” Joanne and Joe have been best friends and fans of each other’s music for many years. Joanne always wanted to work with Joe if the right project or collaboration came about.

“He was already acting as a mentor as well as an unofficial producer on The Blues Album, so I asked him if he’d fancy the job, officially,” says Joanne. “Thankfully, he accepted. The Blues Album has been everything I hoped it would be. It’s been a labor of love, overseen by an artist, producer, and friend who I trust beyond measure. “We wanted to make a tough vocal centric straight blues record that showcases Joanne’s amazing talent but in a slightly different light,” explains Bonamassa. “Joanne is a dear friend and a superstar. Josh and I focused on testing her limits and pushing boundaries that might not have occurred before. It’s all about making a statement and having the listener want to play the music repeatedly.”

Joanne’s covers album pays tribute to artists and bands that are not obvious choices including Little Village, Little Milton, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, James Ray, but, at the same time, she covers seminal blues icons including Albert King, Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green and Magic Sam. Some of the songs covered are B-sides of singles. “We try not to live in the well-worn trails of the blues,” explains Bonamassa. “Each song has to has to stand on its own while paying tribute to the original masters.”

“Joe made it known from the get-go that his main objective for this album was to push me as a singer,” recalls Joanne. “Obviously, Joe has seen me perform many times over the years and knows my voice well. I think he felt that he could my vocal performance more, and get more out of it, especially since I’d had over a year to rest my vocal cords.”

As a musician and a recording and performing artist, Joe Bonamassa has always been a fan of Joanne’s music. Ultimately, what did Bonamassa set out to achieve by co-producing this magnificent, rich, and beautifully recorded and performed album for Joanne? Joe explains, “If you focus on what people might not associate with an artist and work hard on those areas it allows her fans to discover things and sets her up in a different light. Joanne’s a great singer and always has been. The guitar unfortunately has over-shadowed it until now. A lot of us in the business have the same problem. ”

“On the new album, I mostly played my own guitar, my 1966 Esquire ‘Junior’,” says Joanne. “I tried to use a few of Joes Tele’s, but they’re set up for much bigger hands than mine. I did use Joe’s vintage amps – I believe one of his 60’s Vibroverbs mixed with a fumble overdrive for pretty much all of it. We didn’t use any pedals.”

It goes without saying that the production team of Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith are at the top of their game. They recently produced new albums for Joanna Connor, Jimmy Hall, and Eric Gales. Joanna Connor’s album, 4801 South Indiana Avenue, met with great critical acclaim worldwide, was the second album released on Bonamassa’s independent label KTBA Records and debuted at #1 on the Billboard Blues Chart.

“Joe and Josh make a fantastic team,” insists Joanne. “Both bring something different to the table that the other maybe couldn’t. I loved working with them. I was worried about working with Joe for obvious reasons, (we are very close friends), but you never know how that will translate into a working relationship. It was cool to work with two guys not much older than me. Most of the producers I’ve worked with so far haven’t been so close to me in age, plus Joe and Josh have the added benefit of understanding what it is to tour on the same scene as me and what me touring this album will look like. All in all, it was a very relaxed fun session and hang.”