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Trail Mix 2020 – Vol. VIII

Five years ago, a rock band from Utah blew my mind.

I know what you’re thinking. Rock band? Utah? But you read it right. That band was Desert Noises, a (then) quartet with a bombastic stage show and the chops to craft melodic and lyrical rock music. I had their 2014 release, 27 Ways, on constant rotation and was lucky enough to help book them for a couple music festivals in our region in the summer of 2015.

And then, just like that, they were gone. Not long after I discovered them, the band took a hiatus, with front man Kyle Henderson returning from Nashville to the band’s native Utah. Bassist Tyler Osmond and drummer Brennan Allen Lethbridge continued to work with a variety of other artists, but it seemed that Desert Noises was done.

And then they weren’t. While slipping through the time suck of social media earlier this year, I saw some video of the band – now a trio, with original guitarist Patrick Boyer not returning – posting videos of new recordings. Word of a new record got out. I was stoked. And here they are on this month’s Trail Mix. I am very happy to include “Coffee,” off the band’s newest release, Everything Always, which releases later this month.

Featured this month are some new tracks from artists continuing in the best of country and Southern rock traditions. Charley Crockett, Arlo McKinley, and Zephaniah O’Hora are three rising stars on the country scene. And these guys do it the right way – honest, rough and raw. And The Georgia Thunderbolts, from Rome, Georgia, are the latest band to deliver crunchy, guitar driven rock and roll in the spirit of The Allman Brothers, Blackberry Smoke, and Marcus King. For fans of that old Southern country sound, these bands are the real deal.

Be sure to dive deep into this month’s mix and check out new tunes from Bobby Rush, Naked Giants, Danial Donato, Twisted Pine, Juni Ata, Kevin Roby, Heidi Newfield, Mike Dillon, Darren Jessee, Dan Penn, Frontier Folk Nebraska, Terry Ohms, William Matheny, Howard Jennings, Richard Barone (covering long time friend of Trail Mix, Willie Nile), and Graham Stone.

I hope this month’s mix finds you all safe and sound. Times continue to be crazy. Be safe, get outside and play, and take these tunes are your next adventure. And be sure to grab an album or two from these great artists. Times are tough for touring musicians right now and they appreciate all the support you can throw their way.

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