Hailing from the Red Roof Inn, the driver’s seat of a Honda Fit, the floor of the airport, the guest bedroom at your Aunt’s and Uncle’s house, the back seat of a 15-passenger van, and New York City, Brian Dunne is the companion you never knew you wanted. Equipped with a Telecaster, a Gibson Hummingbird and 17 dollars, he is coming to your town to play his guts out and then stand by the merch table.
‘Bug Fixes & Performance Improvements’ was produced by Brian and released in May of 2017 independently. It garnered a great deal of attention based on the quality of the songwriting and musicality, landing Brian on NPR’s Mountain Stage and 2017’s Cayamo Cruise, and tours with The Secret Sisters, Will Hoge, Rosanne Cash, Robert Earl Keen, Joan Osborne, Delbert McClinton, and a myriad of other songwriting heavyweights. The first two singles were picked up by SiriusXM radio, and if you visited a shopping mall during the spring of 2017, you probably heard the lead single ‘Don’t Give Up On Me’ being interrupted by an announcement that someone had lost their kid at the food court.
Brian followed the release of ‘Bug Fixes’ with a live EP of stripped-down versions of previously released songs entitled “The Timber House Sessions”. In early 2019, Brian returned to the studio to begin his next LP with producer Andrew Sarlo which is slated for release sometime before we’re all dead and expected to be ‘totally the most amazing thing you’ve ever heard,’ according to Brian’s mom. In the meantime, his newest single ‘New Tattoo’ has been played extensively on XM radio and become a huge hit amongst a very niche group of people that fly JetBlue and frequent Starbucks.
Rock N’ Roll Ain’t For Me, the 2017 debut from Raleigh singer-songwriter Kate Rhudy, reinterprets well-worn folk with a new vibrancy. “I’ve always written letters to people, and then never sent them,” Rhudy recalls, ‘Rock N’ Roll Ain’t For Me is the collection of those letters, journal entries—in all their glorious honesty.’ Rhudy, who grew up playing both classical violin and fiddlers’ conventions, brought her collection of writings into the studio alongside collaborator and producer Andrew Marlin of Mandolin Orange. The album sounds warm even in its loneliest moments. “Someone once broke my heart by handing me a toothbrush,” sings Rhudy. You can’t help but feel close to her, you can’t help but feel that you’ve just made a friend.
“One of the Triangle’s sharpest young songwriters” -INDY Week
“For those tired of Americana music from the male perspective, give Kate Rhudy’s debut a shot.” -The Strangers Almanac
““Her voice just has this presence to it that could make anybody in any room stop what they’re doing and turn to figure out who the hell is singing.” -Andrew Marlin (Mandolin Orange)
“Likely to bring a smile to faces of listeners…the Raleigh-based singer-songwriter’s sweet folksy vocals and quick strings wield quips with surgical precision. [Rhudy] cuts straight through the bullshit of some guy we have all met at some point or another.” -encore
DeadlockNCHC, Witchpit, and Queen City Rejects
Denny Stone – Vocals
Thomas White – Guitar
Zach Hanley – Bass
Josh Bishop – Drums
for booking please contact
“Rising Star” is not a phrase one would normally use to describe an artist like Griffin House, who has been touring for over 15 years and has recorded 12 studio albums.
The title of Griffin House’s upcoming release,”Rising Star,” references the first track on the album, which tells the story of a character who moves to Music City, like so many do, with a guitar and a dream. Although not intended to be auto-biographical, the listener gets the sense that this comical and fictitious tale could hardly have been woven by someone without a similar life experience to the protagonist in “Rising Star.”
Indeed, House’s story began in much the same way. He moved to Nashville in 2003, as a young man, with not much more than a guitar, and a handful of songs. He took a part-time job downtown on Broadway at Legend’s Gifts, biding his time before he caught his big break. That big break came, after just a few months, in the form of a phone call from Island Def Jam records that jumpstarted his career and led to him signing with CAA and Nettwerk Records.
After that, things happened quickly for House. His 2004 debut album “Lost and Found” was lauded by music critics such as Bill Flanagan (Executive VP MTV/VH1 Networks) who featured House on the CBS Sunday Morning show as one of the “best emerging songwriters.” House began touring, opening for acts like John Mellencamp and the Cranberries, and found himself meeting people like Bruce Springsteen and Willie Nelson. House seemed poised to be more of an “overnight success” rather than a ”rising star,” but that’s not exactly how things turned out. “I’ve been a “rising star” for the past 15 years” House jokes, “it’s a slow rise.”
Although House has enjoyed plenty of success as national headliner for over a decade and has earned a great deal of respect as a well-known performer and singer-songwriter, he seems to not take himself or his career in the music industry too seriously. Now married, sober, and a father, House has learned to balance his career by making his family and his sobriety his first priority.
He pays tribute to his wife and children (with) “When the Kids are Gone,” a song about watching his daughters grow up and imagining he and his wife as empty-nesters.
There’s a lightness in his new record that comes across especially in the first fews songs, such as “Mighty Good Friend,” where you can hear his kids on the recording, as well as the sense of humor in “15 Minutes of Fame.”
House acknowledges that his new album is a collaborative effort. “I teamed up with my old buddies Paul Moak and Ian Fitchuk who helped me make my very first record Lost and Found. It was so good to reunite with them and work together again. It’s amazing that these guys I started out with in the very beginning are now world class musicians and producers being nominated and winning Grammys. This album seemed to come together with a little more grace and ease than records I’ve made in the past, and I think so much of that is attributed to how good the people I got worth with on this record are, they all just happen to be really good friends too.”
Several songs on House’s album are also co-writes with friends and fellow Nashville musicians, including Brian Elmquist (The Lone Bellow) and Joy Williams (The Civil Wars).
“I usually lock myself in a room for 8 hours at a time until I have enough songs done,” House says, “But with touring part time and being a dad part time, that adds up to full time job, so I decided to call in a little help from my friends to write some of these songs. Some songs come easier than others,” says House. “I wrote Mighty Good Friend with Brian (Elmquist) and it’s a song about how I’d been fighting through writer’s block, and then there are songs like Change that I wrote with Joy (Williams). We sat on her couch one morning and I remember showing her the idea for the verse. We worked on the words for an hour or two, and then out of nowhere she sang this beautiful chorus. We broke for lunch and came back and finished it that afternoon. It was one of those songs that took years to live and only one short day to write.”
“I love making music with friends,” says House. “Hindsight was another one with my friend Brian (Elmquist). We share some similarities including our journey into sobriety together. There’s a line in the song “I’ve been thinking lately, of a boy young and on the run” that always makes me imagine Brian as a little boy with a dream, both running away from a hard past and on toward a brighter future. We’ve formed a bond and friendship through music and sobriety, and I think you can feel that in the songs we wrote together.”
Just when you think you have House’s album pegged, there seems to be a surprise around every corner. Each song is distinct in its own own way. The heavy guitar on “Hung Up On You,” a song that House says is a break up letter addressed to alcohol, gives way to the intro of “Cup of Fulfillment” which starts with a bag pipe solo and leads the listener on an epic journey that crescendos into one of the record’s most moving moments.
We catch a glimpse of a much more rock n’ roll side of House than we’ve heard before from the Pink Floyd-esque “Crash and Burn” to the rowdy punk influenced “Natural Man.”
House’s new album “Rising Star” is set for release on June 28th 2019. Also set for release in 2019, is a full length film called “Rising Star,” in which House stars and co-produces with music video director and film-maker Shane Drake. The film features music from House’s new album as well as his previous catalogue and chronicles his life as a musician.
Grammy-winning Bonnie Bishop delivered her sixth album, ‘Ain’t Who I Was,’ on May 27th, 2016 (Thirty Tigers/Plan BB). Produced by Dave Cobb (Chris Stapleton, Sturgill Simpson, Jason Isbell), the album features 10 new recordings, including six songs co-written by Bishop.
‘Ain’t Who I Was’ is her most transparent album to date. Armed with songs from her years-deep catalog, she approached the recording process with the innocence, hope and trepidation of a new artist, but with Dave Cobb at her side.
‘You can hear Bonnie’s soul and heart in every note she sings,’ says Cobb. ‘That’s what attracted me to Bonnie; the honesty and humility in her songwriting.’
SIRSY is fronted by powerhouse vocalist Melanie (Mel) Krahmer, who is described as “one of the most powerful & flexible voices you’ll ever hear.” (-Times Union). Aftertaste Magazine said, “Bursting and belting out emotion and substance, she can be the queen of ‘in the groove’ rocking or be simple and delicate.” Still, there is more to Mel than her soul-inspired vocals: she also plays a full drum kit while standing up (she’s been featured in Modern Drummer Magazine and is officially endorsed by Paiste Cymbals and Vater Percussion). At their live shows, Mel also plays bass parts with a drum stick (on a keyboard mounted on her drums). She even throws in an occasional flute solo, too.
Guitarist Rich Libutti plays a well-loved and road-worn Rickenbacker through a pedal board full of vintage effects. “The guitar player is flawless and raw. Clean enough to be enjoyed, and just edgy enough to make you grin.” (-SXSW Music Blog, Austin TX). Live, Rich also plays bass on a keyboard with his feet.
Chris Trapper is a storyteller. With his soulful, honeyed tenor, sly humor and an uncanny knack for melody, Chris has traveled the world over, performing to a dedicated and ever growing fan base with nothing but his guitar and his songs. Raised on Prine and Kristofferson, Trapper’s first foray in the music industry was as frontman of the critically acclaimed alt-rock band The Push Stars (Capitol Records). Over the past decade, Chris has become a modern day acoustic troubadour, performing over 150 dates a year as a headliner and sharing the stage with the likes of Colin Hay, Martin Sexton and even John Prine himself.
The New York Times has called his work “classic pop perfection.”
The new CD SYMPHONIES OF DIRT & DUST is a collection of 12 songs written and performed by Chris Trapper and Produced by Jason Meeker at Silver Top Studios, Boston, MA. Guest musicians include Dan McLoughlin of The Push Stars on bass and NYC singer/songwriter Amy Fairchild on harmonies.
‘I have to mention Jason, the producer of Symphonies of Dirt & Dust. He is my old friend, who not only worked the clubs in rock bands but also worked for Geffen records in their heyday, so he has a good sense of the music business as a whole. What I love about Jason is that he is absolutely obsessed with his craft and getting songs right.
Every record tells a story. For me, much more than gimmicks, my albums are like diary entries, or truthful accounts of where I’m at in life. I suppose that might be the same for most songwriters, but in the spectrum of the music business, it’s still an animal that’s nearly extinct.’ Chris Trapper
Chris has toured North America and the UK with multi platinum songwriter Colin Hay and Matchbox Twenty’s Rob Thomas.