Thursday, July 18, 2013

Adam Shenk • Suitcases

Adam Shenk photo AdamShenk001_585_zpsac482f67.jpg

I have often remarked I have come across music in many ways, from liking the cover photograph when buying, to hearing someone open for another artist I love. I first ordered Christopher Dallman's 'Race The Light' on a whim, not hearing a single track before it arriving in the mail. And I have often blamed Eric Himan for my excessive music bills, having exposed me to acts like Aiden James, Tom Goss, Levi Kreis, Andy Moore, Coyote Grace, both Jimmy Adams and Angel Adams, and so many others that now fill my iTunes. Just like listening to J.D. Doyle's monthly OutRadio podcasts, and his Queer Music Heritage posts have tipped me off to several other artists. Recently, I added a new resource when I was spending a bit of time with Tom Goss, and he handed me several CDs, telling me they were people I should be listen to. Well, when a fellow-musician makes a recommendation, I tend to take notice. One of those discs was 'Suitcases', featuring the music of Adam Shenk. Knowing nothing about him, I put in the CD and hit play, and now I understand why Tom gave me the CD. While I might be about three years behind the curve on this one, I must admit I instantly liked Shenk's music, and think many of you might like it as well.

Adam Shenk - Suitcases cover photo AdamShenkSuitcasesCOVER_zpsf0a17fd7.jpg

'Suitcases' is an 11-track offering, but there are three additional "bonus tracks", so let's go with fourteen tracks. The songs were written by Shenk and Ayhan Sahin, and Sahin aslo produced and mixed the album. The music is R&B based, with a splash of Pop through in to sweeten the mix. There is an inherent sexiness to the music, the rhythms tending toward slow and grinding, with heartfelt ballads and some mid-tempo stuff that makes me dance the minute it comes on. I am am going to offer up my current three favorite songs on the CD, and let you figure out why you should be adding Adam Shenk to your music collection. I will begin with the title cut off the album, "Suitcases". It is the one song I found with a music video, and I can understand why. This mid-tempo number is bright and cheery, despite the subject matter. The singer struggles with following his heart by staying put with his lover, or needed to move on to take the next step on his journey. I love "Suitcases", and hope you do, too!

Now, while I think "Suitcases" give me an idea just how amazing Shenk's vocals can be, the first track on the album, "Seed", made me sit up and take notice. The song also features Jennifer Hirsh, and the two give amazing performances on the chorus. This allows Adam great freedom to sing from the heart, and soar when he needs to. The song is another one filled with hope and joy, with such a positive look to the future. Enjoy "Seed" featuring Jennifer Hirsh.

See, the final 30 seconds of that song are just amazing, aren't they? Finally, I really love "Saturday". The song features The Rhode Island-based Hip-Hop group Heightz who lay down a tight rap on the track. In the middle of the song, I hear the hat-tip to Buffalo Springfield's classic "For What It's Worth", repeating one of the great lines from Stephen Stills' lyric. I just really loved this song right away, and can listen to it all the time. I hope you enjoy "Saturday" featuring Heightz as much as I do.

The album is really filled with nuggets like these. I really enjoy, and can't thank Tom enough for sharing it. You can find 'Suitcases' on iTunes, Amazon, and CD Baby. To learn more about Adam Shenk, visit his official website. You can also 'follow' him on Twitter, and 'like' him on Facebook.

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