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Carolyn Hunter Finds Her Voice In Empowering New Album ‘Lovelight’

Lovelight is a brilliant synth pop masterpiece detailing Hunter’s most intimate reflections, desires, and longings. 

Indie Folk Pop singer songwriter Carolyn Hunter steps into the spotlight with a collection of 8 stunning tracks on her new album, Lovelight, out December 3rd, with a music video for “Felt Like Love” on December 6th. In addition to this exciting release, Hunter is proud to have contributed background vocals on The Lumineers’ new holiday single, “This Is Life (Merry Christmas),” out now. Lovelight is a moment for the artist in which she fully embraces her self-identity. At its core, this poetic pop celebration explores themes of desire and longing, as well as the evolving sexuality and energy that accompanies finding your voice. For Hunter, these songs reflect a time in which she sought out an identity void of codependency, and rooted in empowerment and exploration. Lovelight is a glimpse into the most intimate corners of Hunter’s world; the songwriter’s ethereal vocals, story-driven lyricism, and fearless vulnerability yield a final product characteristic of Maggie Rogers, HAIM or Taylor Swift’s Folklore.

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The dreamy record features 8 tracks, each painted with colorful melodies and vibrant, kaleidoscopic production. “Felt Like Love” blossoms from simple, warm keys into an anthemic chorus driven by a gritty bass-line, and embellished with spritely synths. “Don’t Let Me Down Easy” immediately catches listeners attention with a beautifully textured, percussive production. Hunter rips the bandage off on this epic heartbreak anthem as she confronts the transition out of the shadows head on. “Giving Myself To You” is a sultry statement against codependence accented with a charismatic bitterness and caressed with angelic background vocals. Hunter achieves the perfect amount of sparkle on this somber track, and peels her vibrant synth-pop back to a deeper level; she captures the full scope of emotions inherent to moving on from one era to the next. The smooth, steady groove on “Come Down” is driven by airy synths, hypnotic percussion, and is steeped in passion and melancholy. Overall, the tracks on this album come together in an impressive showcase at the epitome of dream-pop.

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Hunter dedicated the last three and a half years to perfecting the tracks on Lovelight. She worked regularly on this project with producer and collaborator Julian Peterson out of Wolf Den Studios in Longmont, Colorado. Peterson is a mastermind of songwriting and musical craftsmanship, as well as a wizard on guitar. He is a deep listener that worked flawlessly with Hunter to help her find a new authentic way of singing. In early 2018, the two began workshopping songs she had written. He would take the song on his guitar, shape shift structure, chords, and rhythm until they found the heart of each song. The two honed in on their favorite projects to create the final tracklist; this album is a true collaborative effort, the culmination of the best of their work together. Fans can stream Lovelight on all major streaming platforms on December 3rd, and watch the music video for “Felt Like Love” on December 6th.

More about Carolyn Hunter:

Carolyn has shared stages around the world with the likes of Lang Lang, Karla Bonoff, The Lil Smokies, The Good Lovelies, and many more. After graduating from UCLA’s School of Theater Film and Televisions, Carolyn taught herself guitar and began to pursue life as a folk singer.

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On a small surf island in the southeast, Carolyn founded folk-rock band “The Fam Band,” known for their Joni Mitchell-meets-Allman Brothers grooves. After moving back West to Colorado, she co-founded indie-folk band ‘The Heartstring Hunters’ —known for its crowd pleasing three part harmonies and female review  — and was nominated by Denver Westword for “Best Folk Band.”

Finding solace in Colorado, Carolyn joined the Daniel Rodriguez Band (Elephant Revival) as a vocalist in year, performing across the country, over public radio, and on his latest record “Sojourn of a Burning Sun.” In the Front Range and beyond, Carolyn is often sought after as a collaborator, known for her fairy-like melodies, Joni Mitchell subtleties, and Tracy Chapman-esque tones.

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Music

Gary Dranow delivers a soulful hit with “Bedroom Mentor”

Gary Dranow

Gary Dranow and The Manic Emotions have unleashed a sonic storm with their latest single, “Bedroom Mentor,” which has received critical acclaim for its captivating melodies and electrifying rock and metal music. This boundless talent of skilled musicians boasts a diverse and accomplished international background, all sharing an unwavering passion for creating innovative music. With “Bedroom Mentor,” the band delivers a progressive symphony that enthralls audiences with its unforgettable dynamism and musical virtuosity from when the first chords strike to the last note.

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Drawing inspiration from renowned melodic musical icons such as Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Metallica, the track “Bedroom Mentor” pays homage to the genre’s legends while establishing its distinct identity. The song is a testament to the band’s exceptional ability to seamlessly fuse classic rock nostalgia with a contemporary metal intensity, creating a sonic experience that transcends boundaries and resonates with audiences globally.

Gary Dranow and The Manic Emotions are renowned for their dynamic energy and emotive musical style, which they imbue with authenticity and precision. “Bedroom Mentor,” their latest production, reflects their personal struggles, featuring heartfelt lyrics and dynamic instrumentation that elevate the band’s meticulously crafted sound to new heights of artistic excellence. With each riff and beat, the band takes the listener on a virtuosic rollercoaster ride, showcasing their exquisite mastery and impeccable musicianship, leaving an indelible impression on the audience.

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The vocal performance of Gary Dranow in the production of “Bedroom Mentor” was outstanding and skillfully complemented by the band’s perfectly orchestrated symphony. The resulting musical experience created an enthralling sonic landscape that is a testament to their artistic prowess and creativity. The band’s unique sound defies easy categorization, blending alternative and metal-rock influences into one electrifying package.

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Bedroom Mentor” is just the beginning for Gary Dranow and The Manic Emotions, as this dynamic ensemble, with an extensive discography already under their belt, is poised to impact the world of rock and metal music. Music aficionados and rock and metal enthusiasts should note this captivating phenomenon, as they are a must-listen for anyone looking to experience a soulful adventure.

 

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For more information about Gary Dranow, please visit [website]. 
CLICK HERE TO STREAM Gary Dranow’s Bedroom Mentor on Spotify.
CONNECT WITH Gary Dranow | Instagram | Facebook |

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Artist Spotlight

Richard Lynch Sticks to Tradition on Biographical “Right Where He Ought to Be”

“Right Where He Ought to Be”, like much of Richard Lynch’s work, is deeply rooted in traditional country music, often celebrating the simplicity of rural life, hard work, and strong family values. “Right Where He Ought to Be” continues this tradition, with its narrative (about Hollywood stuntman, Kim Kahana) focusing on finding contentment and a sense of belonging in one’s life choices and circumstances. The title itself suggests a story of realization and acceptance, reflecting on the journey of an individual who has discovered their place in the world—whether it be through returning to their roots, embracing their current life stage, or finding peace in their personal or professional life.

The song narrates the life of Kim Kahana, who, from a young age, walked across the country alone to make California his home. With only a third-grade education and having survived the Great Depression, he joins the military to fight in Korea, where he is captured and nearly killed. Displaying remarkable courage, he escapes death by faking his death and escaping. After the war, he returns to California, aspiring to work in the film industry. Starting as a stuntman, he eventually becomes a revered figure in Hollywood, teaching others for over 70 years.

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Key messages include the power of belief in oneself, the importance of perseverance, and the idea that it’s never too late to find where you belong.

Richard Lynch stands out in the country music scene for his steadfast dedication to the traditional country sound, characterized by its storytelling, emotional honesty, and connection to rural life and blue-collar experiences. “Right Where He Ought to Be” is a reflection of these core themes, encapsulating the essence of what Lynch’s music represents.

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Comparing “Right Where He Ought to Be” to the rest of Lynch’s discography, several key similarities and distinctions emerge:

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  1. Thematic Continuity: Lynch’s songs frequently explore themes of love, loyalty, hard work, and the importance of roots and heritage. “Right Where He Ought to Be” aligns with these themes, likely offering a narrative that celebrates finding one’s place and peace in life, a recurring motif in his work.
  2. Musical Style: Lynch is known for his commitment to traditional country instrumentation and arrangements, shying away from the pop-influenced sounds that dominate modern country. This song, like much of his work, features classic country instruments such as steel guitar, fiddle, and acoustic guitar, creating a sound that is both nostalgic and timeless.
  3. Authenticity and Personal Connection: One of Lynch’s strengths is his ability to draw from his own life experiences, giving his music an authentic and relatable quality. Whether “Right Where He Ought to Be” is autobiographical or inspired by the stories of others, it maintains this personal touch, connecting with listeners through shared experiences and emotions.
  4. Evolution and Consistency: While maintaining a consistent sound, Lynch also shows evolution in his music, exploring various facets of country life and personal introspection. This song represents a deeper, more reflective side of Lynch, offering insights into his personal philosophy or life journey while still fitting comfortably within his established musical identity.

Overall, “Right Where He Ought to Be” serves as both a continuation of and a unique entry in Richard Lynch’s discography. It showcases his strengths as a traditional country artist while offering listeners a potentially new perspective on finding one’s place in the world. As with all of Lynch’s music, the song  resonates with those who appreciate country music’s ability to tell stories that are deeply human and profoundly relatable.

Other suggestions for similar themes and exploration would include Johnny Cash, for his storytelling in songs like “A Boy Named Sue,” which also explores themes of identity and destiny. and films about Hollywood’s golden era, such as “La La Land,” for its exploration of dreams, success, and the allure of the silver screen.

–Roger Newsome

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