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19th Ave New York, NY 95822, USA

royal bliss – carrying the rock and roll torch


Time can be a funny thing. You can be the same “kind” of sound that sold like crazy, oh say 25 years ago or so, but for some reason, it doesn’t sell today. Well, outside Taylor Swift and Adele, what DOES sell today? But let’s put that bit of anger I carry away and focus on the music. You see, the more I dig the more I find rock and roll. The rock and roll train that was so easy to spot did in fact take a head long collision into technology and got scattered in what must have been a “big bang” of its’ own.

Where once everything was all wrapped up in a tidy package, it’s gone and it’s now every man woman and child for themselves. You have to want it to get it and that’s fine. You see, when you keep your ear open and keep looking ahead, you can find bands that have succeeded in their own right and have already had a career that say, 25 years ago the same talent would be known worldwide.

Today it hails from Salt Lake City, Utah of all places. Up until now the only rock I heard of going on in Utah was Feel Never Real and their road trips. But in surfing, hunting and searching, I came across Royal Bliss. In looking at their “created on” date they were not that *too* late to the party, forming in 1997, but it was late enough to where the focus was watching the industry fall down around itself and not on the artists fighting through it because of love, desire, and if I hear the emotion correctly, the love this band has in their music and work.

If the band does wonder where the rush of $3.98 comes from, I did in fact buy their complete collection on itunes and have put them in our rotation. Honestly this is why we are here and the exact target we support. Music that is surviving for the only reason of it’s what we do these days. Survive. There’s no reason we can’t rock out along the way but the paydays are over. The music remains and bands like Royal Bliss carry the torch in some dark times indeed.

I loaded up a handful of songs from all the releases to listen to as I write this and I hear yesterday. I hear tomorrow. Hell, I’m downright feeling “Dickens” in that “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times” in that I really want to cover my bases here. But I hear it. I do, guys. The songs I’ve found I hit “replay” on include Crazy, Drink My Stupid Away, Wake Up and hell, hit iTunes and get your own copy and let’s freak out this band by getting them some gas money for their roadtrip coming up where you can see them live for yourself. Believe it or not people STILL do that. Just the other day a co-worker sent me an e-mail listing all the concerts he’d been to and kept the tickets. All the way back to 1986 and that’s about when I was out there hitting Night Ranger, Honeymoon Suite, 38 Special, REO Speedwagon and if Royal Bliss was rockin then like they are now, they would be mentioned in those same words and memories.

Check out their website and facebook page and if they come around you, buy a ticket and I can ‘bout promise you, you’ll be buying their music in whatever form flicks your jiggets. (no I have no idea what that means but I’ve been saying it since 1972 and it just hit me now).

Funny story about this band is if you’re one of those watching TV and thinking shows like American Idol and even The Voice are where all the talent is at, well, you’re right. But they don’t always get it right. Neil Middlton, singer for this memorable band, came out with his a little rough southern rocker style look and flat out belted “heard it through the grapevine” and I loved the performance. Unfortunately as I understand it someone has to turn around in order for the singer to move on and that didn’t happen. Neil, I wish to god you’d have sang one of your own songs and threw down on that. In any event, this is one place where you may have at least heard this sound.

Other cuts such as Down With Me, Save Me, and Will You Wait for Me (and I do believe that’s all the songs they have that end in “me”) will have you hitting rewind time and time again. I leave you with some links to the bands website, a few videos, and a link to their roadshow where you can go check them out live. I’ve put a word into the band on facebook a stop in Dallas is mandatory. Dinner on me, guys. I’d love just to sit down and talk about life for a band today and the challenges you face so you can keep doing what you love. Appreciate the tunes and the memories I already have jammin to them.




Neal Middleton – Lead Vocal, Guitar
Taylor Richards – Guitars, Vocals
Dwayne Crawford – Bass, Vocals
Jake Smith – Drums, Percussion
Sean “Memphis” Hennesy – Guitars, Vocals