In an ecologically conscious 2014, it might be less than PC to acknowledge that demons are the most efficient fuel for a songwriter’s fire. But Travis Meadows, who grew up hard in Jackson, Mississippi, probably isn’t too worried about that. Now hailing from Nashville, Meadows has spent the last couple of decades grabbing his demons by the neck and throwing them into his personal incinerator. Who ya gonna call?
The result is a school of gritty, haunted country rock that harkens back to a time before mainstream country went paradoxically digital. Travis’ three offerings on Nimbit are more about spit than polish, and in era where “wild” songbirds are getting their chirps Auto-Tuned, a little bit of Meadows straight-shooting is just the rooster-cry CM needs right now. While his repertoire leans heavily on emotive ballads that may belie his 5-o’clock shadow/sunglasses after dark image, there’s also a weighty darkness in creepers like “Good Country People” that offer a stirring window to another side of Travis’ soul. His lyrical content is deeply personal, acknowledging his win over cancer, the loss of his leg, and victories over a few different kinds of bottles. Heartstrings tugged hard enough to snap.
Travis was decorated in 2001 with ASCAP’s Christian Music Award, and has landed eight Top 20 singles in the Contemporary Christian genre. He’s also found success in lending his songs to other performers, including the title track of Dierks Bentley’s latest album, Riser. He’s also a staff writer at Universal. Writing collaborators include Lynard Skynyrd, Lee Ann Womack, and Jake Owen, and Adam Brand. He’s the subject of a recent feature in Rolling Stone as Nashville’s Hottest Songwriter, and is featured in this duet with Jake Owen,”What We Ain’t Got.”
Travis has cherry-picked a fine lineup of session players to round out these records; highlights include some excellent flourishes of organ and pedal steel on “Play with Fire” from My Life 101. Said additions enhance the record in a manner that’s not over-the-top or distracting from what’s important here: the stories. That said, critical listeners will not overlook the caliber of these performances. There’s not really any showboating here, but they’re strong enough to make a listener think “I’ll never be good enough to play that.” Not to say that Travis’ chops as a guitars and vocalist couldn’t carry these records alone—they can—and on more restrained tracks (“Lonely Like This,”) they do. Dusty without the rusty.
My Life 101 concludes with one of the more stirring renditions of “Amazing Grace” that I’ve heard in a long time, a suitable counterpoint to some of the rough-and-tumble ruckus of the previous tracks.
Travis’ Nimbit profile boasts not only three full-length albums and his tour schedule, but also four live performance videos—something that we don’t see enough of on these profiles, so take note!
Tune in for a chance to WIN a StudioLive RM16AI or Ceres Bluetooth speakers!
Join us for our LIVE webcast Thursday, October 30, 2014 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM CDT for an in-depth overview of the StudioLive RM32AI and RM16AI. We will dive in deep, reveal some new features, and take your questions live.
Click here to register: http://conta.cc/1tfneC8
Click here to watch: http://www.presonus.com/videos/presonuslive
While a formidable country songwriter and arranger in her own right, Suzy Bogguss’ voice is the centerpiece of her sonic offering. Anyone who’s heard it once will immediately recognize it on a subsequent listen—heartfelt and pitch-perfect, with just a touch of lonesome smoke. Suzy’s been in the game a while, now, having scored a string of top ten singles in the 90s, including “Outbound Plane,” “Drive South,” “Hey Cinderella,” “Letting Go” and, most notably, “Aces,” The title track of her platinum-selling 1991 album. All told, three of her albums have raked in gold album status, and to date she’s moved a total of three million copies and taken home awards from the CMA, ACM, and the Grammys.
She’s not one to hang up her hat on such accomplishments—nowadays, Suzy plays a lot of shows, and somehow finds the time to run her own label, Loyal Dutchess—which has allowed her complete creative freedom and ownership of her material. Her latest full-length, Lucky, illustrates the benefits of having set out on her own. Lucky finds Suzy reinterpreting classics from none other than Merle Haggard. The admittedly sparse, acoustic instrumentation allows Suzy’s aforementioned voice—and the stories it tells—to drive the entire record. And as anyone who’s listened to Merle Haggard knows, the story is what matters most.
Suzy’s Nimbit store is packed with no fewer than nine full-length records, including a Christmas album and a greatest hits compilation. She’s also taking advantage of the platform’s Calendar feature, and from the looks of things she’s pretty booked up through late April. If she rolls through your town, she is not to be missed.
Click here to read the Keyboard Magazine Sceptre review in its entirety, but here’s the gist:
“Coaxial design done right. Wide sweet spot for stereo imaging. Accuracy and sound quality on par with monitors costing much more… at the end of the day, what we have here is a $1,400-ish (less) pair of speakers that acts like it’s a $3,000-ish pair.”
And speaking of monitors, I thought this tweet from @AveneMusic regarding the Eris family was quite nice:
I bought my wife some @PreSonus Eris E4.5 monitors. They sound so good I’m thinking of replacing my 22 year old NS10s with a pair of Eris E5
— ˚ΛVΞΛ/Ξ (@AveneMusic) October 21, 2014
Well, Mark Williams is back from Chicago, and is pleased to report that The Cold Waves music festival was a smashing success. The show was attended by nearly 2,000 people, and thousands of dollars were raised for Hope for the Day, a non-profit movement dedicated to utilizing music and the arts as a defense mechanism to suicide.
Mark recorded the entire show via the new StudioLive RM32AI, and the recordings have been mixed and polished by Jason Novak and sound great. They’re now available for purchase on Nimbit! All told, there are 12 full sets to choose from, broken down by artist, and there’s also a compilation CD featuring songs from all involved, and Cold Waves t-shirts up for grabs. You can also click here to get the 4-song Cold Waves sampler promo, absolutely free! Proceeds from the Nimbit sales of the show’s recordings will also be going to benefit Hope for the Day. These are exclusive, can’t-get-’em-anywhere-else-not-even-Bitorrent tracks! You can get any track for $0.99, the price for a band’s entire performance is relative to the length of their set, but is always a better deal than buying each track individually.
The lineup was a great mix of stalwart lifers like Front 242 and Die Krupps, and new blood like the Author and Punisher and Youth Code. The full roster includes:
We’re not done with Cold Waves just yet, by the way. We’re in the process of editing together the whopping 60 gigs of video Mark brought back from Chicago, which includes interviews, live performances, and I imagine a surprise or two. Stay tuned!
International Sales Director of Mystery Mark Williams just got back from an incredibly successful trip to Chicago, where he and Martin Atkins hosted a PreSonus Riff to Release clinic focusing on production in Studio One and Nimbit, and followed it up by attending—and recording—the Cold Waves Music Festival, which included Front 242, Fear Factory, Die Krupps, and many more stalwart ambassadors of rivethead culture. More on that in this blog post.
The three-hour Riff-to-Release clinic at SAE Chicago boasted standing-room-only attendance—every chair was taken, and folks who didn’t show up early wound up sitting and standing in the aisles. In a flash of brilliance, SAE streamed video of the presentation into a networked room nearby to accomodate the spillover.
Longime PreSonus forum big dawg and bacon enthusiast Johnny Geib of Home Studio Trainer, presented with Mark on the Studio One portion of the presentation. Blake Novia, a student at SAE, recorded vocals into Studio One, and Johnny and Mark produced, mixed, mastered, and released the recording on Nimbit, all within the span of the presentation.
Don’t believe me? You can get the track here: http://www.nimbitmusic.com/blakenovia1.
Each audience member walked away with a Studio One Artist license and a 90-day Nimbit premium account. Thanks to all who came out and helped make this happen—we should really do this again sometime.
Mark shot a LOT of video on this trip—you’ll find it popping up on PreSonus’ blog and social media platforms sooner than later.
Dave Coffin‘s involvement in the music biz started when he was very young, potentially even prenatal—he was born into a supportive family who raised him in an environment rife with classical music, and you know what they say about kids who hear Mozart while in the womb.
As Dave grew up a little, his aptitude for music was clear, and said supportive family encouraged his musical leanings by buying him a strat for his ninth birthday. Despite having been raised on the classics, Dave found himself drawn more toward mohawks than powdered wigs, and wound up cutting his musical teeth on punk rock.
While his parents may not have been able to sway him from Green Day, Dave Matthews (yes, that Dave Matthews) did. After hearing the siren song of DMB, Coffin cashed in the strat and amp for a Martin, and the rest is history. He wrote and recorded acoustically for six years before pulling up stakes from Maine and shipping up to Boston for college, where he majored in Ellis Paul with a minor in Patty Griffin.
Dave’s Nimbit store offers two four-song EPs and the 2010 full-length, The King is Dead. The Dave is alive, fortunately, and so are many of his session-player friends, who joined him in the studio to make their mark on Dead, and it sounds great as a result. Dave’s earnest performance, songs, and sincerity probably helped a lot, too. Give it a close listen, and you may well be able to hear a streak of politically-charged punk rock attitude here—buried quietly somewhere in the songwriter’s heart, and no longer worn on a safety-pinned sleeve.
The Cold Waves music festival is a nonprofit event held in Chicago to raise money for the Hope for the Day, a non-profit movement dedicated to utilizing music and the arts as a defense mechanism to suicide. This years’ event just concluded, with stellar performances from Front 242, Fear Factory, Die Krupps, and many more. The event was a smash success, with over 2,000 attendees at the festival over two days, including over 100 musicians from all over the planet.
Mark Williams recorded the entire show on the new StudioLive RM32AI—the bulk of the recordings are being mixed as I type this, but for now you can click here to get the 4-song Cold Waves sampler promo, absolutely free! Rest assured that more will be up and available on Nimbit very soon, where sales will go to benefit Hope for the Day. We’ll let you know when that happens.
PreSonus donated some gear for Cold Waves’ silent auction, including two AudioBox Studios, two pairs of Eris 4.5 Monitors, one pair of Sceptre S6 monitors, three Temblor T10 subwoofers, four copies of Studio One Professional, some of which were autographed by the festival’s performers.
But just because the Cold Waves show is over, doesn’t mean the story ends here—Mark recorded the entire proceedings including a ton of interviews with Jason Novak and David Shock, Martin Atkins, and more. There’s much more coming—accoring to Mark, “about 60 gigs worth of video and 16 hours of audio.”
Showing off the latest and greatest in London, including the newest member of the PreSonus fam, WorxAudio Technologies!
We talk about Studio One a lot around here. Most users know that Studio One is available in three flavors; Artist, Producer, and Professional. But we would be remiss to overlook the Studio One fam’s spunky kid brother, Studio One Free.
Unlike the 30-day demo of Studio One Professional (also free, bee tee dubs) Studio One Free never times out, and offers more than enough for the entry-level producer/recordist to get some great songs created. Unlike a lot of other Free DAWs out there, you get unlimited audio and MIDI tracks to mess with, so the sky is pretty much the limit from the get-go. Studio One Free is non-denominational, and runs on both Mac and Windows.
We want to make music-making easy, and we understand that sometimes the world of high-tech audio wrangling can get pretty complex pretty fast, especially for beginners. As such, we feel there’s no need to charge you for features you aren’t ready to use. Any version of Studio One can be upgraded at any time to any higher version—so you’re welcome and encouraged to get what works for you now, and pay-as-you-go as your production needs mature.
Click here for a feature-by-feature breakdown of what’s offered in Studio One’s various editions. But in the meantime, here’s the core offering of Studio One Free: