Reuben James and Miller's Mills, local boys with a great sound.
The saying, “Some of the best things are found in your own backyard” was never truer then for the two CD’s I have for this month. As we closed out a year that took us musically from Brazil through Cyprus, Sweden, Argentina, Italy, England and the US, and across genres of Jazz, Pop, Rock, Classical, Blues and Regional sounds, I look at music as the one element that truly brings out emotional highs and lows, while jogging your memory about those special moments in life. I hope you enjoyed the journey in 2004, and I would like to start 2005 off with“Back in the USA” music.
The two selections come from a core of three musicians who together in 2 different bands created a unique and engaging sound. Their maturity of sound, lyrics and musicianship can be heard as they grew individually, and as a band.
My first selection is entitled Miller’s Mills Time Spent Speeding, which is compilation of 12 tracks which crosses progressive rock, close harmony southern rock and classic rock and roll. The band consists of Ryan Miller on vocals, guitars, keys and sax, Bill Beard on vocals, guitar, harmonica, Jared Pezdek on bass, backing vocals and Dom Cecconi on percussion. They crafted an engaging CD with lyrics that convey intricate and sometimes impenetrable narratives on songs like The Station, Breathe, Fenway and Midtown Manhattan. This is a CD that has been in my collection for a while, but until recently I did not give it the play that it deserves. I reintroduced myself to this CD when I received a current compilation from the three main principals of the band, Ryan Miller, Jared Pezdek and Dom Cecconi. I was curious to compare where they were and where they had gone as a group.
The second selection is entitled The Reuben James Radio Mystery Theater and along with Ryan, Jared and Dom they added Jason Schmitt on vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, trumpet, piano, banjo, mandolin, noise harmonicas, and radio. The transformation was a tighter classic-style influenced sound that blends in different sounds such as orchestra, radio, banjo, mandolin, and slide guitar to create a CD that is melodic with a punch. The lyrics are still strong, and like the first CD have an impenetrable narrative, but with the tighter sound this is a CD that you can feel the emotion from the band as they recorded each and every track. You just have to listen to songs Getaway Car, Broken Hearts and Ashes, Friday, Matter of Time, Amsterdam, Whiskeytrain, and As Elizabeth Waves Goodbye to feel that after the recording was done the group must have been emotionally drained, but satisfied and proud of what they produced. It was a musical pleasure to listen to the evolution of three guys with a dream, talent and drive.
Note – Music Scene is not sponsored by any third party. All music that is written about in Music Scene are the views and experiences of the author, and reflects a compilation of music, acquired during travel to unique destinations, which was recommended by our country host or a local resident, or just happening upon a music event, or searching out a Jazz club, or other live music venue.
© January 2005. Luxury Experience www.luxuryexperience.com All rights reserved