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Kd Bantz | The Blue Sky Sessions

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United States - Indiana

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Rock: 70's Rock Blues: Blues-Rock Moods: Featuring Guitar
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The Blue Sky Sessions

by Kd Bantz

New, fresh blues rock tinged songs of life, truth and hope culminating in the anthem "We Can Make It If We Try" featuring Kenny Aronoff on drums along with a soaring guitar solo.
Genre: Rock: 70's Rock
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Blue Skies and a Smooth Stretch of Road
4:33 $0.99
2. Citizen
6:28 $0.99
3. Going to Mexico
4:11 $0.99
4. Flight of the Monarch
5:17 $0.99
5. Pick Pockets
5:53 $0.99
6. River of Hope
4:00 $0.99
7. September Kind of Day
4:51 $0.99
8. This I Know
5:52 $0.99
9. Ur so Criminal
4:31 $0.99
10. We Can Make It If We Try
8:23 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
The "Blue Sky Sessions" is my fourth studio release Prior releases were under Ken Bantz. Worked extensively during a 3 year period writing this project and on electric guitar tone and technique and it shows. All the solos on "The Blue Sky Sessions" were first takes with the exception of one-I'll let that be a mystery. About the tracks
1. "Blue Skies and a Smooth Stretch of Road" -I was going through a tough patch of life, one of those times you're getting hit from all directions and taking a standing eight count and just neeedd some peace, needed a break, chance to rest and regroup-"staying true to my light is my only ticket out". Writing this song was cathartic for me-helped me get through it-hope it helps you if you need it. Lead guitar on this one just flowed for me-really copped the feel I was looking for.
2. Citizen- As he was leaving the Constitutional Convention Benjamin Franklin was asked "Mr. Franklin, what kind of government did you form" and his response was "a republic now let's see if you can keep it". They ended up with the greatest democratic document in history -The Constitution. I was appalled when I read that -and this varies depending upon source-only 51% to 53% of registered voters voted in the 2016 US Presidential election. For democracy to work the Citizens have to participate, stand up for their rights-that's what this song is all about. The bass player Tim Beeler-who did a fantastic job throughout the album-asked me what kind of sound I was looking for on Citizen-my response was primitive-I wanted to feel it in my gut-he did a great job-this feel was a major driver in the lead guitar work. I wanted the lead guitar to reflect the theme of the song-be soulful and desperate.
3. Going to Mexico-a read that stuck with me from way back when was "The Teaching of Don Juan" by Carlos Castaneda about a shaman in Mexico-anyhow-Mexico after this read has always held a certain mysticism for me-that plus a good friend of mine now lives in Ajijic-just felt this floating/exotic vibe when I wrote this song.
4. Flight of the Monarch-had a neighbor who taught elementary school-Jodie would go out and collect Monarch butterfly cocoons for her class and once they hatched feed them milkweed and then free them for their amazing migration over 1800 miles over the Gulf of Mexico. Amazing journey for such a small, beautiful creature-just blows me away. Have this guitar called a Nashville guitar-naturally set-up to be tuned an octave higher than a standard guitar and when you finger pick this baby it has a tone that is out of this world-only instrumental in the album-had to include it-plus cut a YouTube video that is pretty cool-"Flight of the Monarch" by Ken Bantz-please check it out.
5. Pick Pockets-opening riff-wanted something that built to kind of in your face power chords-things have gotten out of hand "this plane's been highjacked, all reason is gone"-last US Presidential election in 2016 was truly messed up in no small part due to our technology- we are being so manipulated by imbedded algorithms in our cell phones, etc it's more than scary. Wrote a paper once "The Nostalgic Effect of Music in Advertising" and found that the subliminal buttons that advertisers/marketers/politicians/foreign hackers are pushing are super powerful-and these subliminal Pick Pockets are even more advanced/refined now as a result of technology-and in most cases people are not even aware they are being manipulated-time to wake up!
6. River of Hope-wanted a reggae feel/groove here-so much false information out there that I wonder sometimes-"does anybody know the truth, does anybody truly care" we just get so bombarded all the time with info that it gets hard/impossible to decipher what is fact and what is fiction-that plus the infamous Supreme Court Case "Citizen's United" which opened up the flood gates of Corporate and dark money-God knows where that comes from-into our election process so that you feel that every politician is bought and sold by the highest bidder-so the River of Hope can seem like it's damned up-not so fast-with love faith and hope we can make it if we try-last song on this project.
7. September Kind of Day-man when September comes things really shift gears, everything seems to slow down, stop and take a breath before the weather and light head south, just feel the change-copped a cool bluesy sway in this song and Jon Gillespie's organ shift in the last verse just took this baby to another level-plus the guitar floated in this one.
8. This I Know- Loved playing the harmonica line in this song at the break. I told a friend a while back "it seems the older I get the less I know" and his response was"That's a sign of enlightenment" and my response was "umm I wouldn't go that far-just the more I see I sometimes feel like the less I know"- but I do know this 'the more love that you show makes the world a better place, this I know".
9. UR So Criminal-We doubled up with two rhythm guitars and at times lead on this song-gave the guitars a lot more punch plus were able to do some pretty cool panning in places-straight ahead rocker-can be about a jilting, lying lover, lame boss or one of your least favorite politicians or whomever-you choose-shlould be able to guess who I was thinking about-wanted and got some expressive/intense line changes for the guitars on this one.
10. We Can Make It If We Try-wanted a capstone song that ended on the upswing 'with love, faith and hope we can make it if we try" and I firmly believe that. If you hang onto those three you have a good shot-my Dad emphasized this to me long ago and as a result this song is dedicated to him. Dad was a veteran-3 Bronze Stars and a Purple Heart from WWII-served in one of General Patton's tank divisions in the Battle of the Bulge. Dad was a quiet, not very expressive man-most sentimental thing he ever did was his writing in the front of the Bible he gave me for high school graduation.His inscription included "and these three things remained-Faith, Hope and Love and the greatest of these is Love"-from Corinthians 13:13. Now I honestly did not plan this, but that ended up as the last chorus in "We Can Make It If We Try"-"with love, faith and hope we can make it if We Try". I didn't realize I had paraphrased Dad's inscription until I happened to pick up the said Bible the next day after the song's writing-must admit it had been some time since I had last looked at it-confess I am not an everyday reader-and was stunned and touched by what had happened-there are no coincidences-Thanks Dad.
A bit more about the music in the song. Placed a dobro into this song and man did it add a lot to the feel. Every once in a while things just fall into place and did that ever happen for this song. My engineer/studio owner knew Kenny Aronoff from a prior project-and because I wanted an anthem feel that built to a huge crescendo at the end-thought of Kenny. We shot him the song and he said yes he was in-thought I might have to wait until he had a break in his schedule-but it so happened he was in LA and had some studio time-so we shipped the files and he had us 4 great takes in a few days-great drummer-but even a better person-it was so cool to work with him. The ending just takes off with his drums and the guitar lead-did not want the song to end.

Thanks for listening-love, peace and all the best,

KD Bantz



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