Music With a Purpose: Grooving Forward, Vol. 1

Musicians have a long tradition of giving. Sure, they give to all of us with the music that they share. Yet they also have a penchant for supporting meaningful causes. Over the next few weeks we will highlight several releases that demonstrate this giving spirit.

Grooving Forward, Volume 1Grooving Forward, Volume One is the brainchild of Jake Bush and Ethan Scott Baird, two members of Boston folk act Pesky J. Nixon. The release supports the SAMFund, an organization that helps young adult cancer survivors make a successful transition into their post-treatment life, and the Fund’s Andrea Coller Memorial Award. Coller, a musician and close friend of the duo, passed away from Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2008.

Bush and Baird invited many of Boston’s finest folk and Americana acts to participate. The response was impressive, with artists contributing a mix of previously released tracks alongside some unreleased gems.

Kingsley Flood and Tim Gearan — both previously chronicled on Twangville — contribute stand-out tracks from their recent releases. Kingsley Flood’s “Mannequin Man” matches singer Naseem Khuri’s spitfire lyrics with his bandmates furious musical accompaniment while Gearan’s winsome “Money For the Train” has a soothing quality.

Danielle Miraglia’s tender “Drive” sets the singer’s beautiful voice, honeyed with a touch of smokiness, against a somber pedal steel guitar. Simply sublime.

Several artists share tracks planned for forthcoming releases. Christian McNeill’s simmering “Manhattan Rose” showcases the singer’s powerful voice. Ryan Fitzsimmons’ bluesy “Vacation” sets haunting guitar and fiddle against a brooding bass line.

Marc Cohn contributes a previously unreleased live version of “Silver Thunderbird,” meaningful in that the performance was taken from a show where it was dedicated to a Cohn fan waging a battle with cancer. A touching song made all the more moving by the dedication.

This is good music for a good cause.

Special note: Twangville readers can use the code “twangville” to save 30% when purchasing Grooving Forward, Volume 1. Click here to download. All proceeds benefit the SAMFund and the Fund’s Andrea Coller Memorial Award.

Audio Download: Christian McNeill, “Manhattan Rose”

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About the author:  Mild-mannered corporate executive by day, excitable Twangville denizen by night.

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