Since forming in Memphis in the late 90’s, Lucero’s base musical hallmarks have remained similar to the band’s initial sound established with their first record The Attic Tapes. In the history of their expansive discography, Lucero has evolved and embraced everything from southern rock to Stax-inspired Memphis soul, whilst simultaneously maintaining their distinctive sonic foundations. Over 20 years later, dedicated fans of the group still flock to hear the band’s punchy driving rhythms, punk-rooted guitar licks, and lyrics that evoke the whiskey drenched sentimentality of Americana singer-songwriters. As expected of any band built to survive, Lucero has welcomed change over the course of their career, but it has always been on their terms.
The band’s twelfth album, Should’ve Learned by Now, began its life as hardly more than some rough demos and lingering guitar parts. These pieces that were left behind from the band’s previous albums, Among the Ghosts (2018) and When You Found Me (2021) were deemed too uptempo and capering for the prior records’ darker themes.
The band, comprised of all its original members (which in addition to Ben Nichols, includes Brian Venable on guitar, Roy Berry on drums, John C. Stubblefield on bass, and Rick Steff on keys) teamed up for a third time with producer and Grammy Award-winning engineer and mixer, Matt Ross-Spang. Lucero began the recording process in Sam Phillips Recording Service before transitioning and finishing the record in Ross-Spang’s newly opened Southern Grooves Productions in Memphis, TN. Ross-Spang appears to have settled in with the band’s more trademark sound whilst very much making his touch known to listeners.
Jason Boland & The Stragglers
For the past 20 years, Jason Boland & the Stragglers have dazzled audiences all over as one of the leading ambassadors of the Oklahoma and Texas music movement. Millions of fans cheering him on, over 500,000 records sold independently and 10 albums later, Boland is a career musician whose legacy continues to grow.
With a new album titled The Light Saw Me, the acclaimed singer-songwriter decided to go deeper than he’s ever gone before to create a multi-layered sci-fi concept album. Once again teaming up with his frequent co-conspirator, Grammy-winning producer Shooter Jennings, Boland hunkered down in a Los Angeles-area studio to bring The Light Saw Me to life. “This album isn’t just another album from Jason & The Stragglers. It’s a magnum opus of the highest creative order, which in turn I take as a very serious honor to be able to be a part of its inception.” producer Shooter Jennings.
Hidden behind the grandeur of the storyline, the message that Boland aims to share is a universal one: Everyone and everything is connected by love. In classic Boland fashion, The Light Saw Me tackles stories and themes that are integral to his writing beyond his world-class use of metaphors, like who we are, where we’re going, and whether love is something that people feel internally or just connected to consciousness and humans’ fear of their own mortality.