Ben Sparaco has made a name for himself over the past few years, playing with The Ben Sparaco Band, as well as doing stints with founding Allman Brothers Band drummer in Butch Trucks and The Freight Train Band, playing with Florida Grateful Dead tribute act Crazy Fingers, and racking up some high profile sit-ins at only 19 years old. The promising guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter has been compared to Derek Trucks and Warren Haynes, with his jazz influenced slide guitar playing being at the forefront of his music, but his debut full length album Wooden, due out January 13, 2017 is a step in a new direction.
The album displays a conscious shift in Sparaco’s music from four-piece jam rock to a bluegrass-infused folk rock sound, partly inspired by his recent relocation to Nashville, Tennessee.
The lead single “Don’t Try To Wake Me Up” is a soulful slide guitar driven song that delivers upon the record’s promise of showing Sparaco’s Americana side and his newfound songwriting inspiration. “The record is like a musical short story book,” says Sparaco. “These songs all were written on the road and each one sort of follows a different character. Usually the stories end up being kind of morbid in an almost comedic, ironic, way. I think it makes for an interesting combination when you put some seriously weird, dark lyrics in a song that is otherwise happy and hopeful sounding, and with some of the jazz and jam influences that I’ve always had, it ended up being something that I think sounds comfortable and familiar while still being unique in it’s own way.”
Listen to the new single, “Don’t Try To Wake Me Up,” streaming below.
Produced by Ross Holmes, who plays fiddle and mandolin on the album and has toured and recorded with the likes of Bruce Hornsby and The Noisemakers, Warren Haynes, Mumford and Sons, and Chessboxer, the 10 songs range from laid back folk ballads to world music-tinged electronic folk rock jams. The album features a cast of Nashville-based session musicians as well as a guest spot from guitarist Luther Dickinson.
Be sure to pick up Wooden on January 13 or preorder it now on Sparaco’s website. Sparaco will tour in support of the record in winter/spring of 2017.
Make Me Feel Alone Tonight
Exposition of a Traveling Salesman
Cypress Hotel (feat. Luther Dickinson)
Don’t Try To Wake Me Up