Red, white & you, tooWritten by Michael Miller | Editor in Chief Emeritus | email@example.com
After compiling nearly a dozen CDs of local music for charity, the question I am most frequently asked is, “Aren’t you running out of local bands to include?”
As this summer’s “Red, White & You, Too!” CD demonstrates, the sonic answer is a resounding “No!”
There are some musicians I lean on because I am a fan and it is an honor to work with them, even as a passive facilitator; Kerry Patrick Clark, Kyle White, Pat Dailey, Jeff Stewart, Carmen Miller, Mike “Mad Dog” Adams and TAPESTRY are just a few of my favorites. Another, Eddie Boggs, passed away this year, but will still be represented on the CD.
Many of those stalwarts are included on “Red, White & You, Too!” (100 percent of sales benefit the area’s Red Cross military services and disaster relief services) but it is exciting to report the CD is rife with artists making their Toledo Free Press CD debut: Fish Fisher, Birds of Chicago, Nathan Roberts
& The New Birds, Tropic Bombs, Zak Ward, Thirsty Houligans, Bob Stevens and Scott Fish and Distant Cousinz.
For last summer’s inaugural Red Cross CD (which includes tracks by Chrys Peterson, The Bradberries, Crystal Bowersox, Alyson Stoner and several more artists and is also available in limited quantities this summer), I relied mostly on cover tunes. But as local bands began submitting songs this year, it became clear that the quality of their original recordings was so strong, the material could stand on its own; it may sound odd, but I am proud of each track, from its writing to its production. You will hear songs on “Red, White & You, Too!” that are better than most of what you will hear on mainstream radio this summer.
Among the many highlights of the 21-track CD are two songs by Fish and Distant Cousinz that highlight a recent local story that made international headlines. “Marlee’s Freedom” and “Lucky Day” are about the children of Tiffany Eckert and Army Sgt. Andy Eckert, who was killed in Iraq in 2008. The story of daughter Marlee’s connection to freedom and the tale of son Myles finding $20 and “paying it forward” to Lt. Col. Frank Dailey are recounted on the CD’s bonus tracks, both with the blessing and input of Tiffany. It’s a fun and summery CD, but these two tracks serve to remind us why it exists.
I always appreciate Put-in-Bay’s “Christmas in July” weekend, so a brief interlude on the disc provides music for that event; the rocker “Christmas in Killarney” by Extra Stout and the original “Xmas in Jail” by Thirsty Houligans linger on the season just long enough to make you want to take a sprig of mistletoe to the beach.
In two weeks, Project Editor Sanya Ali will present a special issue with stories on the musicians who contributed to the CD and a look at the work of the local Red Cross. In the meantime, stop by any area Big Boy or Ralphie’s restaurant starting next week and get your copy; it’s $10 for 21 tracks, and there’s a $4 Big Boy/Ralphie’s coupon inside.
Great local music, great local meals and a great local cause … is there a better way to enjoy summer?
Michael S. Miller is editor in chief of Toledo Free Press and news director of Newsradio 1370 WSPD. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tags: Alyson Stoner, Big Boy, Birds of Chicago, Bob Stevens and Scott Fish, Carmen Miller, Chrys Peterson, Crystal Bowersox, Distant Cousinz, Eddie Boggs, Fish Fisher, Jeff Stewart, Kerry Patrick Clark, Kyle White, local cause, Local Food, Local music, Lt. Col. Frank Dailey, Mike 'Mad Dog' Adams, Nathan Roberts & the New Birds, Pat Dailey, Put-in-Bay, Ralphie's, Red, Sgt. Andy Eckert, Tapestry, The Bradberries, Thirsty Houligans, Tiffany Eckert, Too! CD, Tropic Bombs, White & You, Zak Ward