BayStreet BandPress Reviews:


This is from Dr. Kevin Gray, lead singer/ guitarist for the White Animals & all around cool guy:

Am enjoying your CD and am not surprised by your tales of its success!!! VERY cool eclectic blend of styles, in my humble opinion "Lighten Up" should be Fla coast/ keys/Caribbean anthem in a few yrs-- who knows, maybe a Buffet cover will get you $$$ for life and you can semi-retire... :-) Xo, Kevin (Gray, MD, WA)

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"Florida Times-Union
Friday, September 17, 1999
GO! section

BayStreet's Music for the Soul
review
By Mark Faulkner

BayStreet is one band that is accustomed to change.

Over the past several years, the popular rock and rhythm-and-blues band has endured its share of changes to its personnel and musical direction. What started as a straight blues band has grown into something not quite rock, blues or soul but something that blends all those influences into a unique sound.

For its new five-song release, Peace, BayStreet has made yet another change. Band members John Miller, Mike Hollingsworth, Jim Brown, Cliff Huber, Dave Smith, and Travis Coleman have decided to emphasize BayStreet's soul rather than just rock-n-roll.

This is not soul music, but rather music for the soul. Four of these five songs, the all-new title track and three remixes/alternate takes of material found on the band's 1998 CD lighten Up, are BayStreet at its most spiritual self. These are not songs to dance to, but to think about and understand.

Peace, the title track, is the song BayStreet seems to have been trying to write all along. The band has made stabs at a more thought-provoking sound in 1998 with songs like And The World Turns Around Again and Life Divine, but neither of those songs work as well as does Peace.

It is one of BayStreet's simpler songs: a subtle acoustic guitar and saxophone, a few sweeps of piano and Miller's vocals a little more than a whisper at times. It is this simplicity that makes it work so well. The muted arrangements and Miller's straight statements about what he would like to see happen in the world, such as all arms being buried, pollution coming to an end, and integrity being the most important thing a person could have, all have a greater impact this way.

The next three songs follow with BayStreet sounding its most introspective and thoughtful. Debbie Rider sings haunting background vocals on And The World Turns Around Again and I Don't Know What Love Is. Rider has this odd Aimee Mann/Julee Cruise quality to her voice that adds more depth to BayStreet's sound.

Of course this wouldn't be a BayStreet CD without the obligatory party song, and Suzanne aptly fills the bill. It is a good song, one that has probably already gotten all kinds of reaction from the crowds at the band's regular shows.

BayStreet has turned another corner with the song Peace. This kind of song shows the band can shrug off the restrictions of playing party time rock and soul in clubs and bars whenever it has something more a bit more important to say."

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"Peace" is an eclectic menagerie of never-before-recorded tunes in addition to remixed versions of tracks found on BayStreet's debut CD, "Lighten Up."

The Leader at the Beaches September 17, 1999

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BayStreet To Benefit B.E.A.M. Saturday

by Liza Van Arsdale music writer

What better time to gather at the Jacksonville Beach pier than in the wake of Hurricane Floyd.
Despite the loss of nearly 80 feet from the pier's end, local band BayStreet is gearing up for a benefit at the pier to support the Beaches Emergency Assistance Ministry, in conjunction with the release of the band's new EP, "Peace."
John Miller, vocalist and driving force behind the event is no stranger to benefits. Last Christmas, BayStreet held a Christmas Dance at the pier, asking guests to donate toys for needy Beaches families.
Last month, BayStreet joined forces with two area bands, Cookie Bush & Big Engine at the Florida Theatre in Jacksonville to benefit people and pets...
Fortunately, Floyd had mercy on our pier, allowing Miller and BayStreet to follow through with the event.
"Everything is set to go," Miller said of the event that almost wasn't.
Being a humanitarian as well as a musician, Miller suggested that the focus of the evening shift into a "Funds for the Pier" celebration, but the idea was turned down by the pier's owners so attention would not be taken away from the original cause and the release of "Peace."
Miller said he is more than moved by the pier owners' putting aside their own misfortune to benefit B.E.A.M. and support the band's newest project.
"Peace is an eclectic menagerie of never-before-recorded tunes in addition to remixed versions of tracks found on BayStreet's debut CD, "Lighten Up."
The event may become a post-hurricane party, but as long as people come and the food pantry is well-stocked, Miller doesn't mind. "Maybe we'll play some Pink Floyd during our breaks," Miller said with a laugh. Perhaps they will play "Wish You Were Here" in honor of the fallen pier.

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"Peace" is an eclectic menagerie of never-before-recorded tunes in addition to remixed versions of tracks found on BayStreet's debut CD, "Lighten Up."

The Leader at the Beaches September 17, 1999
by Liza Van Arsdale
music writer

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Got Peace and I really really like it! Knocked me out! Shades of Floyd! (Dave Gilmore-esque). The words are just perfect, you sound great! I gotta say i like it best of all the BayStreet I've heard! you should get a download of this one on all the band's websites, it's the kind of song you hear once and immediately wanna hear again. The guitar is awesome too! I knew it would be good, and i knew i would like it, but i had no idea it was THAT good! Truly something special. Keep doing exactly what you are doing, you guys really have something!

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