S.S. Web (Milwaukee, WI)
Spontaneous. Surprising. Weird. Energetic. Boozy. These are just some of the words that have been used to describe Milwaukee dark roots band Steering Ships With Empty Bottles. With an eclectic mix of traditional roots sounds, fast-paced punk and rock riffs, and soulful lyrics it's no wonder they've set themselves apart in an expansive musical landscape. With songs to get your feet stomping and your heart weeping, there truly is something for everyone in their craft. This has offered them the fortunate opportunitie to spread their sound both all across the United States and abroad.
With four full-length albums, multiple split EPs, and tracks on a slew of samplers across the globe, you can always be sure that there's something new on the way.
The tides may change, but the ship with always sail.
WT Newton (Carbondale,Il)
From the whiskey-soaked ranks of County Graves comes W.T. Newton's grievous Americana tunes of hometowns and heartbreak. After the disbandment of County Graves, W.T. has set out on a far less rowdy path than the full band, but still striking as many story telling chords as he can muster. Pour yourself a hard drink, and gather round.
Duane Mark (Austin, TX)
Let me tell you a story, about my time in the... Mojave Desert." You see, Duane Mark spent most of his formidable years, growing up in the deserts outside of Bakersfield, CA. Desolation is the first thing that comes to mind, when one thinks on the Mojave Desert. What does one do when growing up in such circumstances? They find a passion to immerse them self in. For Duane Mark, that passion was music.
The son of a carpenter, Duane Mark was born in Phoenix, AZ to a hard working young family, who had a love for music. At the age of 13, he began playing the gospel and bluegrass music that surrounded the small mining towns he would spend his junior high and high school years in. As the teenage years came to a close, Duane would find himself working to build a name in the hard rock sounds of music.
Fast forward 10 years and a handful of semi successful bands, and you would find Duane Mark alone, with only a guitar to his name in the music world. It was at this point that song writing became the focus of this weary troubadour, That period of soul searching and self realization began a colorful journey of touring across this beautiful country and digging into the true roots of American music.
In October of 2013, Duane Mark released his first solo studio album, entitled "Friends & Enemies", with the young and rapidly growing Rail Rider Records. The following 18 months would include over 200 shows, across 23 states, in support of this debut release.
In late 2014, Duane would embark on a new journey in the recording world... the not so new, but ever so delightful world of analog recording. Teaming up with talented Scott McEwan of Fry Pharmacy Recording Studio in Nashville, a 2nd recording would be captured for release! In April of 2015, Rail Rider Records partnered Duane Mark with the fantastic Reverend Red to put out a 12" vinyl split EP, called "Fry Pharmacy Sessions".
Duane Mark enjoyed that recording experience so much, he would immediately return to work with the same production team at Fry Pharmacy for yet another analog recording. Marshall Dymowski, of Rail Rider Records, would take the helm to produce Duane Mark's 2nd full length release. The aptly named "Land of Opportunity & Sorrow" was released on July 17th, 2015. This collection of songs would heavily reflect the ups and downs that 2-1/2 years of hard touring in the music business will bring. From the powerful singles like "Stand My Claim" and "Big Gold", which trumpet the ideals of passionate beliefs and not surrendering, to the lesser known tracks like "Another Day", which reflects the rough view from the bottom of a bottle. This well rounded recording features a variety of musical sounds and paces to engage the listeners in experiencing the bumpy ride that is the music business.
Over the years Duane Mark has become a top notch entertainer and song writer, focusing on connecting with the crowd. With a versatile writing style, his heart felt stories are delivered with a personal take on American Roots music. These elements, combined with the hard work ethic instilled by his upbringing, have this ambassador for the working class on what seems like a never ending tour to take his passion to the world! Sprinkle in a little sarcasm at a live show, with a pinch of tongue in cheek lyrics, and you have "Duane Mark, the Americana act that everybody loves to hate!"
Blackgrass Gospel (Alvin, TX)
Prepare for an original darque lyrical adventure supported by haunting melodies , upbeat rhythms , interactive hooks ; and an all encompassing journey into true Americana awesomeness! Black Grass Gospel is an all-original Outlaw Bluegrass band from Alvin,Texas .