Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Taddy Porter: Old School Rock and Roll 101

Good old rock and roll never truly dies. It just finds a new vessel to inhabit every five to ten years to allow it to reach out and possess a whole new generation. For example, let’s take a closer look at one of those bands. Taddy Porter is a quartet of fine young gentlemen from Oklahoma who just so happen to be one of the brightest up and coming bands in years.

The band was formed by drummer Doug Jones and lead singer/guitarist Andy Brewer in 2007. The formula was completed with the addition of Doug’s brother Kevin on bass and Joe Selby on guitar. Legend has it that the name Taddy Porter was actually spotted by Andy on a beer list in a bar that they were frequenting. The boys recorded an EP in 2007 entitled Monocle and the ride had officially begun.

The boys’ roots seem to weigh in heavily on older rock with a certain flair to the southern side. Their songwriting is a style that is easy to relate to. They don’t go off on tangents about the government or politics. They tend to sing about life and love and who can’t relate to that?

Their debut self titled CD was released to rave reviews from fans and critics. You may think that you have never heard their music before, but quite a few of their songs have been featured on television. Their first single “Shake Me” was on ABC’s Cougar Town, NBC’s The Chase and on Monday Night Football. Another song that received exposure was “King Louie”, which was featured on HBO’s Entourage and the John Cena movie Legendary. More recently, “I Got to Love” is being featured on ABC Family’s Make It of Break It. So, there is a very good chance that you have heard them before!

Their album is a great mix of ballads and rockers. “Big Enough” starts the album off with crashing guitars and Andy’s unique voice definitely grabs your attention. “Fire in the Streets” is a standout track that rocks hard without getting too heavy for the listener. It also features some great guitar work by Joe Selby, who lays down a blistering solo.

“In The Morning” is a really good ballad that highlights Andy’s vocals. It will have you raising your lighter in the air in no time! I also love “Railroad Queen”, which is a bluesy number that presses the pedal to the floor and rocks at full speed as you get into it. Kevin and Doug do a stellar job here as the rhythm section that always holds a great song together.

The two gems on this release may be complete opposites in style, but that is one of the amazing things about this band. They are so diverse and confident in their sound that they can pull it off. “Gotta Get You Back” is a funky, rocking little number about losing the one you love and then trying so hard to get them back. If you listen to this one and don’t feel the rhythm and start tapping your foot, then call 911 because there is a serious problem.

The other gem would be the powerful ballad “Long Slow Drag”. The guitars take the backseat to a haunting piano melody throughout most of the song. I am not sure if this is autobiographical or not, but Andy’s vocals on this song are so full of emotion and conviction. This song should get lots of airplay for it is so richly deserving of it.

In an industry full of flavors of the week, these guys stand out like a sore thumb. Andy and Joe make a great team, like many who have come before them in the history of great rock and roll. I highly recommend this CD to lovers of classic rock and of southern rock. These guys take those sounds and mix them up and put a fresh spin on it and make it sound relevant to today’s music scene. These guys are worthy of going to the next level. Jump on board now before the Taddy Porter bandwagon fills up!

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