Chris O’Leary Band
“West-Coast Meets Chicago and New Orleans Blues”
Chris O’Leary cut his teeth on six years as singer, harp player and front man for Levon Helm’s Barnburners and seven years in the U.S. Marine Corps (infantry squad leader in the Gulf War) — you’ve got to be pretty tough and competent to handle either of those assignments, and Chris came through with flying colors. International tours with the Barnburners and an extended musical residency in New Orleans’ French Quarter bring a wealth of influences to his singing, playing and songwriting. The Chris O’Leary Band’s 2010 VizzTone debut, MR. USED TO BE, garnered critical raves, international airplay, a prestigious Blues Music Award nomination, and a “Best New Artist Debut CD” victory at Chicago’s Blues Blast Music Awards.
The Chris O’Leary Band, all living in New York’s musically-rich Hudson River Valley, worked with producer Dave Gross in his Fat Rabbit Studios to create WAITING FOR THE PHONE TO RING. The record is made up of mostly live performances, with musical interplay that seems to bring the listener into the room with the band. Fat guitar and harmonica tones, pumping horns, keys, background vocals, upright bass and drums fall in behind O’Leary’s naturally powerful vocals. All thirteen songs are Chris O’Leary originals – West-Coast, Chicago and New Orleans flavors with moving, funny, and incisive lyrics over killer grooves. Each song has its own mood and personality, but they all come together to make a complete, cohesive contemporary Blues & Roots album that just oozes vintage cool.