CD Reviews

Barbara Nesbitt

Someday, Maybe Sooner

Country singer-songwriter Barbara Nesbitt has transplanted from SoCal to Austin, and follows up her 2017 release Right as Rain with a new album, Someday, Maybe Sooner. She is a strong vocalist whose sweet pipes can smoothly handle the plaintive ballads about betrayed love, then switch gears to fit comfortably in the pocket of more aggressive […]

Tom Csordas

Facing Trouble

Tom Csordas teaches anthropology at UCSD, and he writes protest songs. He has released a double album of songs about a variety of today’s issues, available only on the web, Facing Trouble and Facing Trouble Part 2. The first album is a four-track set, getting the listener familiar with Csordas, who sings and plays acoustic […]

Gary Seiler

Turn It Up

Gary Seiler plays what can only be called country beach music. His bio says he learned his craft “in smokey barrooms in the 1980s,” and during more than three decades of writing songs he has released four albums—and he has also sailed all over the world. His new release, Turn It Up, represents not just […]

Steph Johnson

So in Love

It was just about 10 years ago, at the now-defunct KSDS/ Ocean Beach Jazz Festival, when I first heard the soulful songbird Steph Johnson work her magic on a thoroughly rapt audience. Ms. Johnson clearly had something going on—and I was fascinated to see her start a new trio some months later with the stalwart […]

Lauren Leigh


Flare is the debut EP by Lauren Leigh Martin. This online download project features five original songs that feature Martin’s considerable pipes, performing pop ballads backed by her backing crew, the Low Keys, which includes Sam Hunt (guitars), Joshua Taylor (guitars), Josh Weinstein (keyboards), Haley Magsino (bass), and Tony Econom (drums, percussion); all contribute group […]

Christopher Dale

Where the Road Turns to Sand

Christopher Dale’s last release, Wood & Stings, was an “unplugged” EP, featuring violinist Elise Ohki. While that superb disc was quiet and stark, Dale is a multi-faceted performer who covers a lot of musical ground, and the singer-songwriter is comfortable in many genres. He is back with his fifth release, Where the Road Turns to […]

Michael Tiernan

Trading Cards for the Faithful

Trading Cards for the Faithful is the latest from Michael Tiernan. The six-track EP is his seventh recorded release since 2004, and this time he draws inspiration from his eventful life, which has seen him survive cancer, travel Europe with his guitar in tow, spend time in a Vatican seminary, and end up in SoCal […]

The Sickstring Outlaws

Electric Moonshine

Electric Moonshine (Tribute to Popcorn Sutton) is the latest album by the Sickstring Outlaws. It is the 2014 follow-up to Johnny Drank Jack, covering much of the same territory: Bakersfield-style country songs about the misadventures of living life on the edge, like predecessors Hank Williams, George Jones, and other outlaw country singers, especially Merle Haggard. […]

Jazz lovers are in for a treat: the Danny Green Trio is established as a solid presence in the San Diego area jazz scene, with five CD releases and well-earned international recognition. Leonard Patton likewise has a considerable cachet as an expressive jazz, gospel, and blues singer, with several of his own solo recordings, and […]

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