Title - Not What I Bargained For
Artist - The Livesays
For those unaware, The Livesays are an accomplished five-piece rock band fronted by the band’s namesake critically acclaimed singer/songwriter/guitarist Billy Livesay, who spent 12 years performing, recording and touring with E-Streeter Clarence Clemons’ band Temple of Soul.
During his 12-year tenure with the beloved “Big Man,” Billy recorded and released Live in Asbury Park Volumes I & II at The Stone Pony, the second album which features Springsteen.
Indeed, Billy has shared the stage with so many industry giants, his resume reading like a Who’s Who of Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famers.
Drummer Howard Goldberg was a co-founding member and drummer for critically acclaimed funk band Rudy who garnished a wide range of international song placements on MTV, MTV2, Disney Channel and more, and was voted Best Funk Band in Florida.
The Livesays’ lineup is rounded out with Jorge Laplume on bass, Victor “Cuqui” Berrios on Hammond B-3 organ, and Tim Murphy on piano, all of whom have impressive resumes of their own.
Cuqui, who grew up in New York City, offers a touch of the Big Apple to the band with his Hammond B3 and impassioned vocals. Tim brings his ear for harmony and his unique Elton John style piano.
Jorge hails from Havana, Cuba; with his Latin roots coupled with a steady diet of the rock groups The Who and Free, he delivers a bass sound that is both funky and thunderous.
The Livesays have created four full length albums that are both memorable and moving with stories ranging from adolescence to adulthood, from battling addiction to conquering depression, from finding love to losing love, and now they bring all that, and oh-so much more back for their fifth album, the excellent Not What I Bargained For (out September 1st, 2021).
1. Two Sides
2. One More Chance
3. What I Bargained For
4. Drunkard’s Lament
5. Show A Little Honesty
6. Hold Me
7. In A Small Town
8. If I Should Ever Fall Behind
9. In Troubled Times
10. Better Angels
11. Can’t Stop The Taking
12. Crazy, Isn’t It
This wickedly vibrant new album opens on the free wheeling AOR of Two Sides and the quieter One More Chance and then backs those up with the melodic tones of the title track What I Bargained For, the down and dirty, gravelly-toned Drunkard’s Lament, and then both the lighter mid-tempo balladry fare of Show A Little Honesty and the Jack Little, Dave Oppenheim, and Ira Schuster-written ditty Hold Me (of which I personally always remember as having been covered by B.A. Robertson and Maggie Bell back in 1981).
Next up is one of my own personal favorites on this brilliant new album, the heartfelt ballad In A Small Town which is itself backed by the lonesome Americana of If I Should Ever Fall Behind, the mid-tempo, drum-led In Troubled Times, the graveled storytelling of Better Angels, the album rounding out with the gently paced Can’t Stop The Taking and the guitar-laced, AOR foot-tapper Isn’t It.
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