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The Sound Cafe Rating

5 star = essential, 4 star = excellent, 3 star = good, 2 = fans/collectors, 1 = for completionists only

Mari Kalkun: Stoonia Lood (Stories of Estonia) (Album)

Intimate music — born of Baltic winter forests and icy landscapes — and yet there is renewal, hope and celebration to be heard. Mari Kalkun’s music has a timeless quality and unhurried sense of time and space.

Clint Wilson: Towns Like Ours (Album)

Likening an artist to Paul Kelly is almost never justified, however in the case of Melbourne singer-songwriter Clint Wilson, it is a more than fair comparison. Clint is as innovative sonically as his celebrated contemporary, and his take on lyric is fresh and unique to him.

Tim Edey: Tim Edey's Celtic Christmas Volume 1 (Album)

The album features Tim Edey and his many musical friends, - with beautiful string arrangements from Canadian Superstars' Natalie MacMaster & Donnell Leahy's daughter - Mary-Francis Leahy. (A 17 year old musical prodigy!) Drums and percussion from Mark Kelso (Irish born Toronto based drummer known for his work with Michael Buble, Bonnie Rait & Natalie MacMaster.) Ross Ainslie, Whistles & Pipes (Award winning artist & composer) playing with the likes of the Treacherous Orchestra & Salsa Celtica. Donald Shaw – Capercaillie founder, and one of Scotland's most prolific composer and producers. Legendary Instrumentalist, producer and composer, Australian / Irish - Steve Cooney – providing memorizing Fretless Bass. New Zealand's harmonica maestro and world renowned harmonica innovator Brendan Power (Riverdance, Sting, Shirley Bassey).


Chris Stapleton: Higher (Album)

Alongside Stapleton (vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, slide electric guitar), the new album features Cobb (acoustic guitar, eclectic guitar), J.T. Cure (bass), Paul Franklin (pedal steel), Derek Mixon (drums), Morgane (background vocals, synthesizer, tambourine) and Lee Pardini (organ, piano).

One of the country’s most respected and beloved musicians, in the past year Stapleton was named Entertainer of the Year at the 58th ACM Awards — resulting in a prestigious ACM Triple Crown Award. Additionally, in February, he performed the National Anthem at Super Bowl LVII and has collaborated in recent years with Adele, Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, Ed Sheeran, Justin Timberlake, P!nk, Sheryl Crow, Santana and many more.

Dalton Dover: Never Giving Up On That (Album)

By the age of 16, Dover had picked up a guitar and started teaching himself to play, yet it was his grandfather who turned him on to country music and artists such as Keith Whitley, Rhett Akins, Joe Diffie and Steve Wariner. Performances at local bars soon followed along with sharing covers of some of his favorite songs on TikTok. It was there he caught the ear of producer Matt McV and A&R veteran and founder of Droptine, Jim Catino, who quickly signed Dover.

Bruce Melodie: When She’s Around (Funga Macho) (Single/Video)

Bruce Melodie, one of East Africa’s most celebrated artists, has teamed up with global dancehall/reggae icon, Shaggy for a groundbreaking collaboration with their new track, “When She’s Around (Funga Macho).” Fusing the best of African rhythms and reggae vibes, the genre-defying song – now available on all digital platforms via S-Curve Records - showcases the rich diversity of contemporary music and is accompanied by a playful music video, captured in Miami Beach and directed by Jay Will (M.I.A, Lee Scratch Perry, Kayne West, Shaggy & Major Lazer).

Mànran: Wild Mountain Thyme (Single)

Award-winning folk supergroup Mànran have announced the release of their new single Wild Mountain Thyme. The band’s unique take on the beloved Scottish folk song is set to raise money for charities helping the homeless in Scotland this Christmas.

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