CHOOSE LOVE: Jesse Rhodes’s new album, Love Over Fear, features a pair of songs called “Forest” and “Joshua Tree.” It’s clear: Rhodes feels a deep connection to the outdoors. “To me, that’s the source, man. That’s where we all come from. And to me, that’s where the music comes from, when I’m able to tune in and get it and receive it,” he said.
The songwriter/composer, formerly of Stegosaurus, tapped deep into the winds and rhythms of the outdoors for his newest album, which opens with the sound of crickets singing. He has scored films on the outdoors before, including Above Santa Barbara and Above Yellowstone, and is working on West of the West, a new film on the Channel Islands currently in production.
Rhodes hunkered down in Glen Phillips’s studio with area drum wizard Austin Beede to lay down some initial rhythms before taking the rest of the material home for a three-year writing and recording process. He said he titled the album about the two opposing forces that motivate many actions: fear and love. “In every action, we can act out of fear or we can act out of love, and I have seen fear dismantle a lot of good loves. With this album, I want to say, ‘Choose love,’” he said. “I think if we can act toward love, we will be better off all around.”
A full band featuring Phillips as well as members of Rhodes’s former band, Stegosaurus, will perform at SOhO, and Rhodes promises a memorable and celebratory event. The Jesse Rhodes CD Release Party, with Zach Madden, is Sunday, September 20, at 7 p.m. at SOhO Restaurant & Music Club (1221 State St.). Call 962-7776 or visit sohosb.com.
FOR CHILDREN OF ALL AGES: Renee Stahl, the tenderly voiced, recently relocated S.B. resident of Renee and Jeremy fame, has made a new album “for children of all ages,” Simpatico. The record by Renee & Friends was penned to give young (and young-at-heart) listeners a deeper, more thoughtful form of songwriting than the patronizing child singsong genre, said Stahl, who enjoys the deep and heady spiritualism of bands like Talk Talk and Radiohead. “We want to respect children and their intelligence; they’re so smart,” she said.
Stahl’s comforting music has grown up around children, as she wrote and recorded her first album with music (and not marital) partner Jeremy Toback in her soon-to-be-born baby’s nursery. For this one, Stahl called upon a talented roster of friends, including Lisa Loeb, Maya Rudolph, Molly Shannon, Colin Hay, Chris Ballew, and, of course, one of Santa Barbara’s no doubt busiest and nicest musical collaborators, Glen Phillips. The album is out now.
LEAVE IT TO BEAVERSTOCK: Paso Robles wine country will receive a two-night jolt of folk rock and funk this weekend when Beaverstock rolls into the vineyards with headliners Dawes and War. Hosted by Castoro Cellars in Templeton, the festival, now in its third year, aims to bring Central Coasters together at summer’s close for a weekend of music, yoga, and wine. Proceeds of this year’s festival will help the Templeton Education Foundation. Beaverstock is Saturday-Sunday, September 19-20, 1-9 p.m. at 1315 North Bethel Road, Templeton. Call (888) DAM-FINE or visit castorocellars.com.
88 WAYS AND COUNTING: The founders of Keep Music Alive will host 88+ Ways Music Can Change Your Life, inspired by the book of the same name. Featuring Erin Carere, Rose Kingsley, Vincent James, and Victoria DeMare, the event will help fund music education programs. Catch it at SOhO on Saturday, September 19, at noon.