NMM: Alabama Shakes

Photo: Chris White

Special Note: Alabama Shakes is heading out on tour this spring and summer and just announced a stop at Koka Booth Amphitheater in Cary on June 10 for all you locals out there! 

This week’s “New Music Monday” features a band rooted deep in the heart of Alabama – Athens, Ala. to be exact.

Alabama Shakes is a band that I’m sure many of you have heard of before. The band is fresh off an appearance on “Saturday Night Live” and is working on a brand new album, to be released April 21.
High school friends, Brittany Howard and Zac Cockrell – lead singer/guitarist and bassist, respectively – began meeting after school and writing songs in 2009. Howard and Cockrell played progressive rock and other genres for a while but soon found their true calling in roots rock – rock music that reverts back to its roots in blues, folk and country music. The duo wanted to find more members and did just that with the addition of drummer, Steve Johnson, and guitarist Heath Fogg.

Alabama Shakes released a self-titled EP that earned the band a performance at the CMJ Music Marathon in New York, an industry showcase. That performance caught the attention of Jon Pareles of The New York Times who praised the band and Howard. In 2012, Alabama Shakes released its first full length album, Boys & Girls to much acclaim. The album was certified Gold by the RIAA for U.S. sales exceeding 500,000 and the band received three Grammy nominations including Best New Artist.

The latest project from Alabama Shakes, Sound & Color, is already sounding like it’ll be a great album. The band has released two singles from the new album and one of those is featured in the video above. I really like the groove and feel of “Don’t Wanna Fight” and I also like Howard’s way of delivering the lyrics and passion of the songs to the listeners. Have a listen!

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