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So far Steve Schnee has created 354 blog entries.

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: KEIKO MATSUI/ECHO

Smooth Jazz and New Age music are genres that have always received the short end of the stick. Jazz purists and Rock critics have continually written the music off as ‘lifeless’ and/or ‘boring.’ However, both Smooth Jazz and New Age have survived decades of critical neglect thanks to a large – and continually growing – audience. And why has this music survived and prospered for so long? Because the music connects with the listener in a way that most musical styles don’t. These are not genres that have continually gone after the big bucks. This is music created from emotion – sadness, joy, desire, etc. – and because it comes from an honest place, listeners can easily absorb those feelings that went into creating the art. In turn, they bond with the music because of those emotions. It becomes a very personal experience. And isn’t that what helps us get through life?  All of those very personal experiences, good or bad? Thankfully, music will always fall on the side of good. […]

By | February 22nd, 2019|News|0 Comments

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: DALE WATSON/CALL ME LUCKY

The term ‘Honky-Tonk’ means different things to different people. For some, Honky-Tonk is raw and raucous sub-genre of Country Music. For others, it is a smoky bar with beer-stained floorboards, rowdy patrons, and the constant flow of Country Music. From juke boxes to live music performed by local and traveling musicians, Honky-Tonk bars gave birth to a distinctive style of Country Music. Then again, one can say that Honky-Tonk music helped establish the spirit of a Honky-Tonk bar. So, in this case, it doesn’t matter which came first – both the music and the drinking establishments are now intrinsically linked to each other. However, a bar cannot easily hitch itself to a truck and move from town to town like a Honky-Tonk musician can. This means that the spirit of Honky-Tonk must exist within the music and it is up to the many traveling minstrels to spread its ‘gospel’.  And this brings us to a man who preaches that gospel better than anyone out there: Dale Watson.  […]

By | February 15th, 2019|News|0 Comments

AMPED™ 2019 Issue 06 New Release Digital Magazine

New Releases From Keiko Matsui Michael W. Smith UB40 Head Cat Echoes

By | February 14th, 2019|New Release Digital Magazine|0 Comments

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: BOB MOULD/SUNSHINE ROCK

Forty years ago, a Rock artist’s longevity was not something that was guaranteed. The first Rock ‘n’ Roll boom of the ‘50s had been swallowed by the late ‘50s/early ‘60s teen idols. Then those heart throbs were dethroned by the British Invasion. That joyful racket was overcome by the Summer Of Love/Hippy scene of 1967. And so on… Like any industry, the new kids were constantly replacing the old guard, who would then reluctantly slip into the shadows and wait for nostalgia to make them momentarily relevant again. The four Beatles (among others) made it work but a lot of their contemporaries had been left behind, lost in a time warp and destined to play the oldies circuit for the rest of their careers. By 1979, artists and the industry were more understanding when it came to making hit records and extending an artist’s career. However, the Punk movement was initially viewed as a novelty by the bigwigs and while the industry capitalized on Punk’s commercial appeal, they certainly didn’t expect any of the artists to last beyond a two or three-year window, just like any other musical movement that came along since the days of Buddy Holly and Elvis Presley. Over time, we have learned that nearly every artist from every genre was capable of something much more than their “15 minutes of fame”. As for the unruly Punk kids, Bob Mould was going to break the mold (semi-pun intended)… […]

By | February 8th, 2019|News|Comments Off on AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: BOB MOULD/SUNSHINE ROCK

AMPED™ 2019 Issue 05 New Release Digital Magazine

New Releases From Dale Watson Durand Jones & The Indicators No Depression The Alchemist Rare Earth

By | February 4th, 2019|New Release Digital Magazine|Comments Off on AMPED™ 2019 Issue 05 New Release Digital Magazine

AMPED™ 2019 Issue 04 New Release Digital Magazine

New Releases From Bob Mould Band Of Horses John Carpenter Motorhead Gary Wilson

By | February 4th, 2019|New Release Digital Magazine|Comments Off on AMPED™ 2019 Issue 04 New Release Digital Magazine

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: GUIDED BY VOICES/ZEPPELIN OVER CHINA

It has been written many times elsewhere, but it must be said again: Robert Pollard is the most prolific artist in the history of Rock ‘n’ Roll. When you look back on bands like The Beatles, who put out two albums and a handful of singles per year in their early days, Pollard makes them look like slackers. While his main band, Guided By Voices, and all of his other projects may not have had the cultural impact that the Fab Four had, Robert has still made a huge impact on the Alternative and Indie music scenes. Not only has he influenced a new generation of singer/songwriters, he’s also inspired them to create music as art and music as expression. And while he may not have intended to be a DIY pioneer, he has certainly become one.  I guess that is what happens when you’ve been making music on your own terms for four decades.  While Pollard & Co. have been releasing music since the ‘80s, they don’t belong to any decade – the albums remain timeless. […]

By | February 1st, 2019|News|Comments Off on AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: GUIDED BY VOICES/ZEPPELIN OVER CHINA

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: PARLIAMENT/MEDICAID FRAUD DOGG

George Clinton is the mad scientist of Funk. He assembles some of the most talented and unique musicians in R&B, Soul, Funk and Rock and creates a sound that is miles ahead of any contemporary Funk band on the scene. Case in point: musicians today are just catching up with what George was doing with Funkadelic nearly 50 years ago. And since Funkadelic always had a fluid line-up over the years, their sound was always evolving. However, Clinton was a prolific leader that felt the need to push his brand of Funk forward. Reaching back into formative years, he reformed his late ‘50s Doo Wop group The Parliaments, renamed them Parliament, and Cosmic Funk was born. […]

By | January 25th, 2019|News|Comments Off on AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: PARLIAMENT/MEDICAID FRAUD DOGG

AMPED™ 2019 Issue 03 New Release Digital Magazine

New Releases From Sun Ra Guided By Voices Django Reinhardt The Handsome Family Jedi Mind Tricks

By | January 21st, 2019|New Release Digital Magazine|Comments Off on AMPED™ 2019 Issue 03 New Release Digital Magazine

AMPED™ 2019 Issue 02 New Release Digital Magazine

New Releases From Parliament Blue Oyster Cult Fred Neill Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen The Manhattan Transfer

By | January 21st, 2019|New Release Digital Magazine|Comments Off on AMPED™ 2019 Issue 02 New Release Digital Magazine