New Orleans native Trombone Shorty (born Troy Andrews) began his career as a bandleader at the young age of six, toured internationally at age 12, and spent his teens playing with various brass bands throughout New Orleans and touring worldwide with Lenny Kravitz. He fronts Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, a funk/rock/jazz/hip-hop band. Together they have toured across the United States, Europe, Australia, Russia, Japan and Brazil. In 2010, Trombone Shorty released his debut album, the Grammy-nominated Backatown, followed by For True in 2011, which topped Billboard's Contemporary Jazz Chart for 12 weeks, which was followed by 2013's Say That to Say This.
Trombone Shorty's new album opens with a dirge, but if you think Andrews came here to mourn, you got it all wrong. That bit of beautiful New Orleans soul—"Laveau Dirge No. 1," named after one of the city's most famous voodoo queens—shows off its host's roots before Parking Lot Symphony branches out wildly, wonderfully, funkily across 12 diverse cuts. True to its title, this album contains multitudes of sound—from brass band blare and deep-groove funk, to bluesy beauty and hip-hop/pop swagger—and plenty of emotion all anchored, of course, by stellar playing and the idea that, even in the toughest of times, as Andrews says, "Music brings unity."
Sea of Noise, the second full-length album by St. Paul & The Broken Bones, marks a quantum leap in sound and style for the high-voltage Birmingham, Alabama-based band. Produced by Paul Butler and recorded at Nashville’s Sound Emporium, the group’s sophomore effort features an expanded eight-piece lineup of the widely praised soul-based rock unit. Longtime members Paul Janeway (lead vocals), Jesse Phillips (bass, guitar), Browan Lollar (guitars), Andrew Lee (drums), Al Gamble (keyboards), and Allen Branstetter (trumpet) are joined by Jason Mingledorff (saxophone, clarinet, flute), and Chad Fisher (trombone).