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  • Writer's pictureThe Sound Cafe

Jo's Picks Of The Month: New Exclusive Monthly Column To The Sound Cafe

Introduction By Stevie Connor.

I've hung out with musicians and aficionado's of music in many genres from all over the world, for as long as I can remember, I get introduced to new music and artists on a daily basis through our media outlets, Blues & Roots Radio, and right here at The Sound Cafe, but, there is a lot to consume, and through the years I have probably missed a lot that I should have caught on to.

Over the last couple of years through a mutual friend, I was introduced to Jo Louks, Jo lives in Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada, and through the years I've spent a lot of time with Jo talking music. Every time I come away from our conversations I take with me introductions to new artists (to me), from a wide variety of genres, most times I shake my head, and ask myself why I'd missed that artist or band. It's quite incredible her taste in music, it could be described as eclectic, and Jo is very knowledgable about the music she talks about. So where am I going with this?

Recently on a road trip across Southern Ontario, I sat in the front seat of the car with Jo at the wheel, and as we sped along the highway towards Toronto we talked music, and as always Jo introduced me to releases that had passed me by. Half way through our journey we pulled over into a gas station for a quick break, and as we sat and talked I asked Jo if she would be willing to introduce The Sound Cafe readers to some of the artists that we'd talked about, Jo thought about it and we continued on our journey. After a couple of days of being back home, I was delighted to learn Jo had agreed to host an exclusive monthly column.

So here we are, I am delighted to introduce you to Jo Louks, who in turn will introduce you on a monthly basis, to some incredible artists that you might never have heard of, but you will, I'm sure, want to check out further.

I asked Jo where she found her love for music, this is what she told me;

Picture: Jo Louks.

"My collection of K-TELS playing on my portable candle record player is where my relationship with and love for music of all genres began. It continued throughout my life, from going to concerts through to my more recent luck in being involved in an album production, from studio recording to mastering. WOW! What an experience, and from it I've gained an even greater respect and appreciation for what it takes to make great music!

Couple that with my air guitar acumen, and that of course makes me a consummate professional in bringing 'Jo's Picks Of The Month' to you.

All kidding aside my repertoire of songs is vast and what an honour it is to share my picks with the readers of The Sound Cafe Magazine!"

We welcome Jo Louks to The Sound Cafe team, and here are Jo's Picks Of The Month for August, for you to explore.


Survivin' is a song by English indie pop band Bastille. It was released on 22 September 2020 as the second single from their EP, Goosebumps. The song was written by Dan Priddy, Dan Smith, Mark Crew and Phil Plested.

Talking about the song, Dan Smith said, "There'd been times when I felt like I'd been in a washing machine and on a conveyor belt at the same time, but when people asked me how I was doing, the answer was always the British cliché: 'Yep, all good, fine'. At the start of lockdown I felt very self-conscious about having written a song that felt relevant when it wasn't intended to be, but then I also think 2020 is the year we all stopped pretending everything's fine."

A music video for the song was released on 6 October 2020 at a total length of three minutes and two seconds. The video was directed by Reza Dolatabadi.

Talking about the video, Dolatabadi said, "Overall I wanted to give the video a grand feel, almost like it belongs on the big screen, and for that we had to build a city in 3D, lock all the camera angles and movements and then animate our characters over the 3D layouts. Animation is a teamwork. I have to say I've been so lucky to work with an incredible team of artists from all over the world on this project. Without their dedication and attention to details there was no way I could have finished this ambitious piece."


Shinedown is an American rock band from Jacksonville, Florida, formed by singer Brent Smith in 2001 after the dissolution of Dreve, his previous band. Smith, still under contract with record label Atlantic Records, recruited the band's original lineup of Jasin Todd as guitarist, Brad Stewart on bass, and Barry Kerch on drums.

On January 26, 2022, Shinedown released the lead single, "Planet Zero", from their seventh studio album of the same name. The album was originally set to be released on April 22, 2022. On April 12, 2022, the band announced that the album's release was being pushed back to July 1, 2022. The change was due to a delay in vinyl production, and the band's desire for the fanbase to experience the album simultaneously across formats.

After the album's release, "A Symptom of Being Human" was released as the fourth single on February 22, 2023. "A Symptom of Being Human" was the first Shinedown single since their debut to not be released to rock radio, but it was released to Hot Adult Contemporary radio.

Shinedown has the most number one singles on the Billboard Mainstream Rock charts with 18, and all of their released singles have reached the top 5 on the chart.


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