Stephan Hogan releasing new music!

image1.PNGNot that long ago, we shared a story about Stephan Hogan, country singer and guitarist from Sacramento, California who made it into the top 5 for Guitar Center’s National Competition – On Stage with Vince Gill. Selected from thousands of entrants, Stephan got to rehearse and play with Vince Gill at The Mint in Los Angeles.

2017 hasn’t slowed down for Stephan. He has been busy recording  his latest EP, “Dangerous Love,” which will release March 17th, in addition to fielding interviews, playing shows and getting ready to join Vince Gill on tour at one of his shows this year. 5397c19dca4babd9016ac51ac3a8499b.jpg

Stephan spent a lot of time writing his next round of songs for the EP with the support of family and friends. As an artist, it’s very easy to mold your songs into what is currently trending, but not necessarily a true representation of your sound. This EP promises to be 100% Stephan Hogan, and we had the pleasure of previewing it before it’s released. Some of our favorite tracks include, “Girls Love Love Songs,” and the title track “Dangerous Love.”

 

To find out more about Stephan’s new EP, please visit his website.

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Braeden Counts, a Sutherlin, Oregon country music singer/songwriter Releases 1st Single, Shot of You, June 10, 2016

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Braeden Counts, a Sutherlin, Oregon country music singer/songwriter

Releases 1st Single, Shot of You, June 10, 2016

Now available: CD, and Digital, iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Apple Music

Sutherlin, Or – Braeden Counts has a voice you can’t ignore; a voice of persistence, of struggle and of hope. His new single Shot of You is out today, June 10, 2016. Braeden Counts, is a singer/songwriter and will be releasing his first EP in the fall of 2016. His single, Shot of You, is the first song that he has written.

This song was made in collaboration with All About Groove Entertainment and produced by Michael Harris and Kimberley Patterson, engineered by BluReel and mixed and mastered by Kent Shin at The Tower Studio in San Diego, California.

The groundbreaking country singer is a man of endless talent and passion. Born into a small town with not a lot of opportunities in the music scene, Braeden used his dedication and passion to turn his dreams into a reality. A self-taught musician, he studied some of his favorite artists while working and going to college full time, often practicing his guitar into the late hours of the night. Braeden has proved to be a country boy at heart who can seamlessly blend pop, traditional and new country into his music.

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“Music is my way of telling my life’s stories,” said Braeden Counts. “It’s my way of letting you know exactly who I am, what I stand for, what I believe in, and so on. I’ve always been a little bit of an introvert, but with music I can be as open as I want to be. It’s let me come out of my shell and express myself not only as an artist, but as a human being. I hope my music and bring out the same feeling in others. That’s what it’s all about. Connecting with people and making them feel something real. And that’s what I want to do with my music.”

Braeden has been featured as a guest artist on Best Country 103 KRSB to perform his original single, “Angels in the sky,” which was written as a tribute to his college, Umpqua Community College, and the friends he lost in the shooting tragedy, in addition to a guest performance at the Umpqua Strong Music Festival. Today also marks the date that Braeden will graduate from UCC with his Fitness Technician Certification. He has played other local venues such as Brewstation, Black Forest, Melrose Grange, Movies in the Park at the Half Shell, and is always adding new venues. While recording his single at The Tower Studio in San Diego, California, Braeden also performed at The Tin Roof, and Lestats East. He is proudly sponsored by Coldcock Whiskey and managed by All About Groove Entertainment and has received accolades from several national country acts for his song covers on his YouTube channel.

While it’s true that his path has been one of hard work and determination, Braeden aims to show that believing in yourself and fulfilling your dreams are possible.

More info, tour dates and updates at http://braedencounts.com

www.facebook.com/braedencounts

www.twitter.com/braedencounts

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Braeden Counts is available for interviews and other media opportunities. If you would like physical copies of Shot of You, album artwork, additional press shots, or anything else at all, please let me know and I will send them your way.

 

 

 

 

 

SINGER-SONGWRITER ROBBY JOHNSON

untitled (2).pngNASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 17, 2016) – CMR recording artist Robby Johnson has a big reason to celebrate these days. The singer-songwriter is watching as his current single, “Hate Me Tonight,” moves into the Top-30 on the MUSIC ROW Country Breakout chart this week.

“Radio has been so supportive of my music – going back to my first single,” said Johnson. “I have made so many unforgettable memories and friendships with the many Program and Music Directors throughout the United States since going out on my first radio tour. I am so humbled and thankful for their support.”

Johnson’s previous single, “South Of Me,” helped net him exposure on a wide variety of television programs – including Huckabee and a much-coveted performance on The Late Show with David Letterman, as well as mentions in magazines such as TV Guide, USA Today, and The Tennessean.

The critically acclaimed country artist, which serves as a commercial spokesperson for McDonalds Canada has been in Nashville since 2012 and is currently on the road promoting his debut album, Don’t Look Back, which was released in January 2016. Critics have raved about the set, with People describing it as “refreshing and as seductive as … his brooding good looks,” while Billboard lauded his “neighborly tone” and Music Connection praised his “rugged good looks, appealing tenor and top-notch material.”

For more information on Johnson, visit his website at www.Robby-Johnson.com.

MARK CHESNUTT SIGNS WITH ROW ENTERTAINMENT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 10, 2016) – Row Entertainment, an exciting new label in Nashville, is excited to announce the signing of country music superstar Mark Chesnutt to its roster. “Without a doubt, Mark is an artist that continues to stand for the best in the format,” said Row’s Jimmy Ritchey. “Everyone here is so excited to be working along with him to bring his music to the masses.”

Chesnutt, one of the most iconic voices in the business, thanks to hits such as “I’ll Think Of Something” and “Your Love Is A Miracle,” will release Tradition Lives for Row later this year. It is his first studio release of all new music since 2008.

“Country music is what I’ve always been about, and that’s what I’ll always be,” Chesnutt said. “It’s all I know, and I think people will love the new music as much as I am going to love playing it for them.”

He’s also excited about his association with Row. “Jimmy Ritchey and I have been making music for years. He understands what I do, and has always been behind me. I needed somebody like Jimmy who really believed in country music. I have complete confidence in what he and everyone at Row will bring to the table,” Chesnutt added. Ritchey also produced Tradition Lives.

Row Entertainment is a partnership with Ritchey, Kyle Waites, and recording artist Tim Rushlow.

Row Entertainment’s offices are located at 2818 Azalea Place Nashville, TN 37204.

Chesnutt is booked by WME. To inquire about a booking opportunity, please call 615-963-3000.

Striking Matches coverage from Cre8tive Reviews!

 

 

 

Cre8tive Reviews recently had the pleasure of working with Country Duo “Striking Matches,” when they stopped by Country Station KJUG to play a few songs for us. They are an amazing new duo who will no doubt make a BIG impression on country music.

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With their T Bone Burnett-produced debut album, guitar-wielding duo Striking Matches creates an unexpected and unique sound that defies easy categorization. The music of Striking Matches—Sarah Zimmermann and Justin Davis–occupies that sweet spot at the intersection of country, rock and blues, where all of the elements blend to form an authentically raw and rootsy sound that has a timeless and international appeal.

Indeed, their songs including “When the Right One Comes Along” and “Hanging on a Lie” have been featured on ABC’s hit drama series Nashville and recorded by the show’s stars Sam Palladio and Clare Bowen, and attracted an international fan base. Their first performances in London produced sold-out shows and audiences with a deep knowledge of their lyrics, even before the release of their first full album. Their debut self-titled EP was named among iTunes “Best of 2012″ and received national attention from outlets such as NPR, the BBC and The Wall Street Journal.

“The Nashville TV show was definitely a big break for us,” Sarah says. “It was the first time we had any national or international attention. That opened the door to a lot of fans finding us here in the U.S., but even overseas when the show came out in the U.K.,” she says.

Striking Matches is the debut artist on the newly revived label, I.R.S. Nashville, and has toured with Train, Vince Gill, Ashley Monroe and Hunter Hayes.

“Our music is best left up to interpretation, but we hope it represents an amalgamation of everything that has influenced us over the course of our lives, which comes from rock and roll, country and blues, and we fall somewhere in between all of those,” Justin says.

Although their debut album is a perfect fit in the landscape of today’s commercial music, it also stands out from the rest of the pack with its driving rhythms and simple yet artful production that’s designed to showcase the compelling harmonies, honest lyrics and innovative guitar playing. They had a hand in writing all 11 songs on the album, which captures the high energy and spontaneity of their popular live shows.

Of course, that’s not surprising, given that both have built a musical foundation on guitar playing and gravitate toward guitar-driven music, such as The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Cream, Steely Dan, Patsy Cline, Jerry Reed and Chet Atkins. Justin is known for his fast, intricate playing, while Sarah was influenced by the blues guitarists who strive to make every note count and last. “I have always found Sarah’s guitar playing interesting because it seems to complement mine,” he says.

Both shared the same dream growing up, even though they came from different backgrounds and regions. Justin was raised in Atlanta by parents who work in the medical field. “While they didn’t play any music, they had really great taste in music and that helped set me on a path that I am forever grateful for,” says Justin, who was raised on music such as Sam Cooke, Petula Clark, Otis Redding, Ray Charles and Motown greats.

He began writing songs at age 10 and has been playing guitar as long as he can remember. But he looked like a late bloomer compared to Sarah, who was raised outside of Philadelphia and began playing clarinet in second grade, violin in third grade and guitar in fourth. Her father was a musician who repaired woodwinds and other instruments in a downstairs studio, so she was immersed in music and was influenced by the Dixie Chicks. “They proved to me that a girl can play just like a guy can play,” she says. “They were my inspiration for being a lead guitar player.”

Both decided to pursue their dreams of having a career in music by moving to Nashville. Their paths crossed when both decided to attend Belmont University in 2007 and major in guitar, so they attended the same guitar seminar class and were randomly paired together by their professor early in the semester.

“It was a room full of guys and we were saying, ‘Well, as long as we don’t get the girl, we’ll be all right,” Justin recalls. “They called my name and Sarah’s. I thought, ‘Great. It’s all over now.’ I said, ‘Do you know any blues?’ She pulled out her slide and proceeded to leave everyone’s jaw on the floor, including mine. It was one of those ‘we should do that again’ moments.”

And they did just that. They began performing songs by Nickel Creek, Alison Krauss and Keith Urban, which led to writing together, which resulted in their first public performances at places such as the Bluebird Cafe. While they continued to perform with others, they loved the music they made together most of all. “This was always where we were having the most fun,” he says. “It was the most fulfilling. It was a dynamic of complement that didn’t exist anywhere else.”

Sarah won a scholarship to take a songwriting course at Vanderbilt University, and one of the guest speakers was veteran music executive John Grady. “He sat down, looked at me and said, ‘I know you,’” Sarah says. “The day before, someone had shown him a video we put on YouTube and he liked it. We started talking and got back together the next day. I think it was fate.”

After discussions with several labels, they accepted the offer to be the first artists on I.R.S Nashville. “I don’t know that there is a cooler label that I would want to be a part of,” Justin says. “It has such a history and it feels right.”

The duo was also thrilled when they heard that famed producer T Bone Burnett, who produced their favorite Grammy-winning album Raising Sand by Alison Krauss and Robert Plant, wanted to work on their debut project. “The environment in the studio was all vibe,” Sarah says. “It was really relaxed. T Bone has a way of making you feel super important and everything you are doing is right, and if it is not, he will guide you to where it needs to be. He knows how to bring out the very best of us.”

The best includes songs such as “Hanging on a Lie,” which they reinterpret with grit, a distorted mandolin and a mid-song jam session, as well as the organic and honest “Nothing But the Silence,” the guitar-centered “Trouble Is As Trouble Does” and “Make a Liar Out of Me” and groove-oriented “Never Gonna Love Again.”

“We haven’t written our best song yet,” Justin says. “We are so proud and grateful for everything so far, especially this record, and the sky is the limit for us. Creatively, we started writing songs while we were in the studio and especially when we finished. There was no resting. We are still hungry.”

Adds Sarah, “We have more to say and we want to be heard.”

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We definitely liked what we heard, and so did the fans. Tracking on iTunes even showed that in the UK they were #2 for preorders in download sales. They have a unique and great sound, chemistry and are a fresh group looking to take over the airwaves!

To learn more about Striking Matches and to purchase their music, please visit their OFFICIAL WEBSITE.

 

Katie’s Korner – Spotlight on Jesse Charette!

 Every so often I stumble upon a talented guy or girl on YouTube, Vine or other social media outlets. Most of these talented people are just singing because they love it, or they want to start their musical career but are in the early stages. This installment will focus on Jesse Charette.
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Jesse Charette isn’t just your normal 18 year old from Georgia, he is very musically talented. He started singing at the age of 3 with his mom in the car. Jesse’s inspirations are his father and Brantley Gilbert. He started playing guitar at just age 8, and hopes to be pursuing his passion in music and possibly living the dream in five years. When it comes to his favorite song, Jesse doesn’t have one. He says it all depends on his mood, and that it ranges from Rascal Flatts to Trace Atkins. Jesse says he wants to do whatever he needs to for people to hear his voice. He has videos on YouTube, Instagram, Vine, and Facebook.

To support Jesse and his music please find him at the following links:

YouTube

Facebook

Vine

Instagram

Soundcloud

 

Interview with Nashville Musician Jon Q!

Cre8tive Reviews recently had the pleasure of meeting Nashville based musician Jon Q. Not only is Jon a super cool guy, he is also extremely talented. We love being able to meet artists like this and help promote them on our blog, but we also love to hear about new artists and be introduced to amazing new songs!

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So who is Jon Q?

Mixing the energy and feel of groove oriented rhythms with the deeper threads of country writing, Jon Q has been Performing roughly 230+ shows a year for the past 3 years both in Nashville, TN and across the country. Paying dues as an instrumentalist and singer he has, in his career, played both the Grand Ole Opry and Ryman Auditorium (Mother Church Of Country Music) stages as well as every major and minor club in the Nashville Area. In the last 18 months he has performed with:
Scott Holt Tour
Cowboy Troy
Bucky Covington
Lee Brice
Jesse Keith Whitley
BeulahFest (Pensacola Fl) sharing the stage with Charlie Daniels and Lynyrd Skynyrd
Rhythm & Roots Festival, Bristol TN
Belle Chere Festival, North Carolina
CRS (Country Radio Seminar) Nashville TN
Multiple appearances for CMA Fest in Nashville, TN.
Country Fest (Wisconsin Dells)

As a writer he been very fortunate to have had a couple of small cuts on compilation albums as well as written and performed with a handful of contestants that have appeared on
American Idol: Kayla Nettles, Kaleb Hensley,
The Voice: Craig Wayne Boyd, Nicole Johnsin, Megan Ruger
The Biggest Loser: “Big Vinny” Vincent Van Zant (Trailer Choir)
Extreme Makeover, Weight loss Edition: Jayce Hein

Jon was gracious enough to spend some time answering some of our questions in an interview.

1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
 Ugh…where to start?  Coonhounds, Deep-fried Twinkies, Fireball, Jesus, Sweet Tea and the SEC!
2. We noticed on your website that you at one time played and taught 8 different instruments. What were they?
Guitar, Bass, Keyboards, Trumpet, Trombone, French Horn and Tuba.  I also tutored in  Ear Training and Theory…that’s 7 + 2 halves I guess.  I saw a life ahead of me as a music instructor in small music stores.  I made a decision, cut it down to 3 (eventually just Guitar & Bass) and focused on my craft.
Sometimes I feel I chose the wrong two instruments….(haha)
3. As a singer/songwriter how do you come up with the inspiration for your songs?
A good amount of it is feelings based, that’s where I start.  from there I find a context.  I don’t usually start with a context first (like “my wife pissed me off so I’m gonna write a song about that”) mostly because that limits the scope. Feeling good, bad, angry, lonely, determined….those base emotions are where we go.  I try to match a feeling with a musical tone as I’m fishing for lyrics.
4. What is your best experience in playing a show – location, with what band, etc?
Getting a chance to play at the Ryman auditorium was probably towards the top.  i still have a lot of “firsts” to get through.  they all are special
5. What is your worst experience with a band – local/national, where and with who?
Well, any time you get on stage with unprepared or inexperienced people it’s a drag.  Theres a good many of those in the memory file as well.  sometimes though, its more about the ride there or back that becomes the REAL drag.  musical ability doesn’t always translate to people skills or proper hygiene or stress management.  I wouldn’t really be able to say which one stands out the most.  Every now and then its just root canal but this is the life we’ve chosen… 
6. What is your role with RP Management in Nashville? 
RP Entertainment Nashville isn’t really a management company, although we do some management type things.  I helped co-found the company as VP of Music Promotion and Music Director) along with Heidi (CEO Promo-Internet) and Charlie Woods (VP – Business Manager).  I, using my ties to the live music community, help get some of these new artists off the ground and running with their live show and musical lineup.  
  
7. What artists have you worked with through them?
A lot of young guns you may be hearing about.  Matt Van Fossen (Ohio), Chris Allen, Andrea Nicole(Kentucky), Shaun Abbott(East TN), Derek Herndon (Arkansas), The All Worked Up Band (Nashville) and a few others like The Lost Trailers with Jeff Dane.  Nashville is really more of a starting place for artists.  
8. At RP Nashville what do you do for artists and how do you pick artist to represent?
 Well, it’s a combination.  Talent doesn’t always win the race as much as hard work and determination, you need to have all three wrapped up with enough confidence and humility to be teachable and relentless.   If we see someone we like and they agree to sign with us we then start “digging the ditch” so to speak.   Image branding, audience demographic targeting, social media footprint, Press Kit making, even Logo and artwork and a business plan and strategy.   Different philosophy than a lot of other companies, I think. 
9. When was the company founded?
 What time is it?   
10. As an artist yourself where do you see yourself in five years?
 God willing?   Out of debt.  Thats really my goal.   
 
11. Any relationships with major labels or PR. Firms?
 I’m currently recording my EP at Curb Records.  I’m not signed with them but I have relationships with their engineer David Bates whom ive known for years.  He’s really helping me shape the sounds and direction of these songs.  Cant say enough good things about him.
12. Tell us something that makes you unique?
Well, I feel everyone feels they are unique, probably all might say the same things too,  I know that I’ve had to work for every last thing in my life.  no family support, no financial support so I completely understand the workin mans dollar.  If they’re willing to throw a couple bucks in my tip jug or buy the band a round or dance and sing along then I feel I’m doing something right.  If the bartenders are singing along then im REALLY doing something right.  I always write, perform and interact with that in mind.  I don’t know if I relate completely to any one group of people but I know we all go out to be entertained, even if we don’t know it.  We go to dinner or a bar with the same desire as a movie or a game.  we want to lose ourselves for a little while…life is waitin back home.  I want people to forget themselves and step into the time machine and have a good time.  
To learn more about Jon Q please visit his Official Website