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J.D. and the Sons of Rhythm

PlayErie.com Review:

J.D. and the Sons of Rhythm: Family Values

Family Values

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JD and the Sons of Rhythm
CD release - "Family Values"

Long time drummer and entrepreneur JD Hopkins has put together his own all-star collection of local Erie musicians for this 2CD release. It seems that JD is out to prove that musical talent can be passed on genetically, as two of his sons (Jayson and Rickie) play drums on Family Values and his son-in-law (Keith Homerski) plays electric drums and co-engineered this release. Homerski also co-produced along with JD.

The music is jam based, somewhat funky and often jazzy in flavor. A couple of the tunes have a Spanish or Latin feel, while other pieces give a nod to Reggae. This release is the newest in a series of JD's jamming experiments at Midtown Recording. Every so often JD calls up all of the musicians he knows and invites them down to record. Later JD and engineer Randy Hetherington sift through the improvs and put together a cohesive whole.

For these sessions JD brought in a couple of ex-Erie area natives. First was Jim Norstrom from New York City on bass, and from New Orleans Tim Smith came in to add electric guitar. Some of you may remember that Nordstrom played with Erie's Stabilizers, both here in Erie as well as after they were signed to Columbia Records and moved to Los Angeles. Also, both Nordstrom and Smith worked with Trent Reznor in the Meadville based Option 30, before Reznor moved on to Cleveland and Nine Inch Nails. For more info on the Stabilizers see the Classic Corner page.

Now, about that all-star collection of musicians... sixteen players contributed to this recording. On electric drums were JD, Randy Hetherington, Keith Homerski and Jayson Hopkins. Rickie Hopkins handled all of the acoustic drums. Bass players included Jim Nordstrom, Kenny Cornelius, Tammy Johnson and Doug Phillips (who also contributed piano on one track). Guitarists were Tim Smith, Mike Ohm, Scott Cravener, Pat Vahey, Jeremy Quesada with Randy Hetherington and Frank Singer on one track each. Singer also played piano and Julio Quesada added acoustic guitar on two tracks.

Disc one of this set is a bit more jazzy in feel while disc two leans a little toward the spacier side. If you want to hear some of Erie's finest musicians jamming on extended instrumentals then Family Values is for you. Bravo to JD for taking the risk of just letting the music happen in the studio, and following wherever it might lead. You can purchase Family Values as well as other Sons Of Rhythm releases in our own Online CD Shop.
- J.Trevethan

Links:

JD & the Sons Of Rhythm on PlayErie.com

Purchase FAMILY VALUES at CD Baby.com

 


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