John Calvin Abney
If you spend much time on the road not taken, you are likely to meet John Calvin Abney there.
Perfectionist. Evoker of chaos. Individualist. Accomplished side man. Storyteller.
In 2012, Calvin released the Without Wax demos, a six song collection that marked the beginning of his transition from a guitarist to a songwriter — something that Abney freely acknowledges came to him later than some. With the release of the Empty Candles EP in late 2014 and his first-full length recording, Better Luck, out in January 2015, this attention to songwriting craft is paying big dividends for Abney.
John Calvin Abney is stepping out of the shadows in his role as a sideman and unmistakably taking center stage as a bandleader in his own right. Armed with a clear vision of his own, an unwavering dedication to the song as his chosen vehicle of personal expression and experience measurable in thousand mile hauls to the next gig, John Calvin Abney is a game-changer and we haven’t seen the best (forget about the last) of him yet.
“Authoring eleven songs that salute his folk infatuation yet branching out of the pigeonhole just a bit…What’s left is enigmatic, bright blues and rock and roll; landscapes of sounds and instruments put together seamlessly, complete with heady, deeply personal lyrics. He has an almost cherub-like vocal style. The last thing you’d expect is the road experience Abney has amassed. His voice portrays a distant innocence, delivered almost as if you’re the only one that doesn’t get the joke….Better Luck is a solid freshman effort and your first “must-have” of 2015.” – No Depression
Levi Parham is an Americana musician, singer and songwriter from southeast Oklahoma. The Kansas City Star called him “An Okie version of Ray Lamontagne…” while The Bluegrass Situation said, “Perhaps it’s something in the water – that same iron-heavy tap drink that Woody Guthrie sipped on as a young man….Whatever it is, Levi Parham has it.”
Parham released his first album, An Okie Opera, in may 2013. Currentland Magazine named it one of the top Red Dirt Albums of the year along side Samantha Crain, The Red Dirt Rangers, and Jason Boland saying, ”Parham is a major talent. He has a soulful, ballsy voice. His Songwriting is filled with infectious hooks, and easy rolling rhythms. These are all love songs, evoking the full range of emotions that go along with it.” Ryan Heinsius, editor of Flagstaff Live Magazine wrote, “A heartfelt piece of recorded Americana, raw and honest, showing off an up-and-coming songwriter molding a distinct and beautiful style.”
In December 2014, Parham released an EP titled Avalon Drive recorded in Nashville, TN to much appraise. “…highly stylized; subtle hand claps and flanging strat riffs act as an incredibly interesting foil to Parham’s roughed up singing voice.” wrote The Bluegrass Situation. Flagstaff Live raved, saying “Levi Parham shines as a dazzling mashup of radical down-stroke blues sung in the sultry vibrato of a terrestrial angel with perfectly groomed facial hair, his all-original tunes may remind Tom Petty enough of himself to ride those coat-tails.” CMT Edge featured the video for the first single off of the album Never Coming Home To Me, which garnered attention and set the momentum for Parham’s second video release, Ruby, featured on country music publication The Boot.