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These 4 singer-songwriters from Santa Cruz are extending the legacy of a band like the Grateful Dead, with quirky lyrics plucked from the absurdity of daily life served over a double-lead guitar with mid-tempo groove that would make Bob and Jerry proud. The roots flavor is all there: the Wurlitzer, the B3, and the band synergy from the call-and-response guitar figures.

With a powerful four-part harmony, Burning Pictures gives us a groovy minute to look back at life, and appreciate the moments spent with the people we care about. Seaglass, the latest from Burning Pictures, is a mellow song that reminisces on memories with a lost love, and finds a purity of expression that is hidden in the unearthed details of a romantic past. This nostalgic bit of hindsight feels genuine, and reminds us to keep watch for the little moments that make up a life well-lived.

We dug up a story and shared it

Burning Pictures is a roots rock band from Santa Cruz. This song is featured on our Roots Collection playlist.

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Leee Zimmer - no relation to Hans Zimmer - grew up in England and now lives in France as an electronic musician and sound designer. The feel is smooth, with understated notes on the trumpet, a slow shuffle, and a beautiful sense of movement from the live drum performance.

With Joy Of A Kind, we find a delicious balance between the 8th-note pulse and the backbeat swing, and a mix of electronic ephemera and jazz improvisation that creates a sense of suspended time. The pocket here feels familiar, like a forgotten dream, which offers us the solace of our own imagination. Joy Of A Kind, the latest from iD3, ushers in the release of Simple Beats, an EP that joins elements of downtempo, instrumental hip-hop, and jazz to offer a soothing and wordless mix of beats and deep groove.

This song is featured on our Instrumental Hip Hop playlist.

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When Californian songwriter Maddy Myers and Danish guitarist Gustav Moltke decided to collaborate, Moon Panda was born. Now, with a bewitching video to accompany their latest single Gun, they have announced a free show in London at The Old Blue Last on August 1st with support from White Flowers and Auld.

The new video follows a figure played by Myers exploring the mystical charms of a beautiful yet twisted house. The theme is a play on the perception of reality and imagination, while the mix combines influences from bands like Portishead and Beach House to present a luscious and inviting groove with hints of indie-pop and reggae. Gun, the latest track from Moon Panda, is a dream-sequence of interactions between Myers, a lizard, and a house, with gorgeous cinematography and a sense that both the world and the night conspire against us. Yet we persist.

You are not your silence. Get out of your head.

Gun (Official Music Video) - Moon Panda - YouTube

Gun was produced by Tom Biller. This song is featured on our CHILL Angeles playlist.

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Wilder Woods releases his new acoustic video for Someday Soon, which offers us a taste of his visceral artistry, showcasing the deep soul of his passionate baritone. Weaving elements of poetic introspection and self-scrutiny into the dulcet tones of the soft-spoken verse, we are taken unawares by the chorus bellow.

It is the sound of honest surprise, mixed with premeditated catharsis - in the depths of Someday Soon we find a mix of both: as if the themes of this self-talk are tired of being tread upon, yet we still yearn for the message. Forgiveness never goes out of style, and this solo-acoustic performance by Wilder Woods is informed by precisely that sense of self-appreciation. The live rendition of this music video feels so intimate, and the moment is so genuine, that we join in a sense of anticipation for the long arc of redemptive karma. Someday Soon, the latest from Atlantic Records artist Wilder Woods, is the ballad your own heart would write for itself, that joins a sense of honesty with acceptance and the idea that beauty is all around us.

Sometimes the cold wind blows; sometimes the wolves rush in

Wilder Woods - Someday Soon (Acoustic Video) - YouTube

This song is featured on our Roots Collection playlist.

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Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Matthew Bean (aka Sneaky Bones) explains, the title of his new album Strangers I’ve Already Met stems from his theory of familiarity and simulation. In the process of tracking the common threads that tie us together as humans, we quickly see that there is a vague, intangible connection between everyone sharing life in this world.

Bean retraces the roots of folk, country, and rock, while adding his own mojo along the way. In doing so, he invents a groovy space for himself, combining a heavy pick sound on the electric bass with the trappings of rock and roll. Sore Eyes, the latest from Seattle’s Sneaky Bones, is a funky reminder that sometimes all you need to do is slow down.

Wondering where I wanna end up when this all ends.

Washington-based folk artist Matthew Bean releases his 3rd EP. This song is featured on our Roots Collection playlist.

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Bad is the latest single from Electric Light, which is the latest studio album by British singer-songwriter James Bay. He took the world by storm in 2014 when his EP Let It Go debuted on the iTunes album top 10.

Since then, he has shared the stage with Ed Sheeran, performed on the Burberry runway, and toured with Hozier: his star is certainly on the rise, while his classic combination of angelic falsetto and crush-worthy good looks will continue to bring adoring new fans to his side. Produced by Dan Wilson, Bad quickly became a fan favorite after a recent US headline tour this spring. It features the melancholic soul of his powerful tenor voice, as well as a stripped-down roots vibe from the rhythm section that leaves the vulnerability intact - we are left with painful residue of a tough situation.

Bay says of the track:

I wanted to be honest about some of my own stories and other stories I was being pulled into. Bad is a break up song, it’s just not my break up.

ALSO: Check out James Bay and Julia Michaels performing their hit single Peer Pressure on The Ellen DeGeneres Show here.

James Bay - Bad (Lyric Video) - YouTube

James Bay is an English singer/songwriter and guitarist from Hitchin, UK. This song is featured on our Soul playlist.

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Homme de Fleurs’ understated production centers on themes of transition, loss, and love. The simple roots groove leaves plenty of room for the mesmerizing duet between vocalists Jason Zerbin and Emmalee Madden, and we are left with a stylistic signature that might remind you of Bon Iver.

A beautiful trinity between boomy drums, acoustic guitar, and a musty combo organ lifts up the mix, while we visit with a lyrical attempt at reconciling the chaos of the world with the stillness in our hearts. Contact, the latest from Homme de Fleurs, is a beautiful and honest attempt at piercing the veil between docility and freedom: it is a masterpiece of poetic statement, palpable melancholy, and cosmic truth.

It must be stylish to want to be good

Homme de Fleurs is an alt-folk project by Canadian artist and producer Jason Zerbin. This song is featured on our Roots Collection playlist.

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Starting out with a simple duet between piano and electric guitar, Dutch composer BARTH. assembles a slow-moving procession of repeated notes, with feelings both of movement, and a slight sadness. The added percussion quickly elevates the mood, offering welcome redemption from the sparse counterpoint of notes with a backbeat, and further ambient warmth from the edges of the mix.

Receding as quickly as it blossomed, the song disappears, and leaves us with an impression of the empty space that is left behind. The latest single from BARTH., entitled curiosity waves, is a simple and confident moment spent in the glow of self-discovery, returning to the power of what is authentic and visceral.

BARTH. is an Ambient / Minimalistic composer from the Netherlands. This song is featured on our Rainy Day playlist.

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Off the grid for 6 days with no cell service, Judd Hoos started off 2019 in a cabin near Mt. Rushmore recording their upcoming EP entitled We Were Young with the help of Nashville producer J. Hall. With a touring schedule across 10 Midwest states that includes a week of headline shows at the 2019 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, the Judd Hoos live experience is beginning to catch attention on a national scale.

Mixing elements of Rock, Americana, and Country, and adding a sense of gritty power-pop, on the back of a clean electric guitar-riff we explore the process of growing up and how our perspectives can change over the years. Tyler Bills, Shane Funk, Chris Hornick, and Andy Young follow up 2017’s Music in the Dark with a wistful toe-tapper, ahead of their summer tour. We Were Young, the latest from Judd Hoos, is a truth-telling exploration of the past we are all running from.

Judd Hoos is an indie rock band from the Black Hills of South Dakota. This song is featured on our Americana playlist.

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Nashville’s The Minks present a music video for their first single J. Walker Blues, from upcoming debut full-length Light and Sweet, set for release later this year on Cafe Rooster Records. The video is a continuous shot that was filmed at local watering hole Dee’s Country Cocktail Lounge, with a rotating cast of band members and friends supporting front-woman Nikki Barber’s day-in-the-life performance.

Directed and edited by Houston Mathews of Slowhand Films, Barber invites you into the private world of The Minks: the lights, sounds, and colors of a millennial cabaret, serving literal shots of mojo in the golden glow of beer signs and other barroom kitsch. As we watch the narrative unfold, and engage with the references - from an invective towards cell-phone culture to some props for Townes Van Zandt - we are left with an appreciation for the creativity of Barber playing out behind the scenes as producer, as well as a direct look at her emerging rock-and-roll credentials. The Minks are an indie-rock quartet out of Music City, combining a gritty blues-stomp with heavy guitars, a wailing harmonica, and a sense of casual-cool.

I might not be good, but you know I try
instead of feeling like sitting here and waiting around to die

The Minks - J. Walker Blues (Official Video) - YouTube

The Minks are the latest act to join Cafe Rooster Records. Their debut full-length Light and Sweet is scheduled for release this Fall. This song is featured on our Roots Collection playlist.

-photo credit: Price Harrison

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