Mt. Vernon Register-News

April 23, 2011

Musically Speaking: South of 70 releases new CD


MT. VERNON — Area band South of 70 has a new CD out entitled “Future City”.

This weekend, the Musically Speaking radio program will feature cuts from the album, as well as a chat with S70 guitarist Jeff “Burrito” Bradley.

Of course, all four of the original members, Jeremy Lloyd, Jeff Bradley, Charles T. Leuker and Shane Carnine are on the album, along with King City players John Scrivner and Del Herbert.

Scrivner provided some drumming and backing vocals, while Herbert made his banjo scream.

The album, recorded at Jupiter Studios in the Gateway City, was also one of the last completed projects by St. Louis area session player, the late Don E. Curtis, well-respected around the region for his mastery of the steel guitar.

“Future City” consists of 10 tracks, all of which are original compositions.

The album includes remakes of four songs that were part of the bands first offering in 2003. “Hollywood Wedding”, “Desert Highway” and “Memphis” will be on the new CD. One other remake, “Shot Down Again”, will have undergone some editing, since Musically Speaking is a family radio program (and the Federal Communications Commission suggests/mandates that I don’t broadcast obscene language, no matter how good the tune is).

The remaining six cuts illustrate a much deeper evolution of what started out as band that just played for the sheer enjoyment, to one that isn’t afraid to take on current and topical social causes as part of their repertoire.

Proof of that is heard in “Real T.V.” and “Plastic Neon States of America”, both tunes penned by Lloyd.

And then there is Leuker’s first-hand perception of the flooding caused by Hurricane Katrina in his original, “Louisiana”.

The band also hit a home run in their homage to a legend, with “Farm”. Written by Leuker while he was stationed at an U.S. airbase in Germany, the tune was his interpretation of the band after seeing the last Farm show at the Sesser Opera House in February 2009.

The song was performed live for the first time at WolfStock 2009.

“Last Night” and “Raunchy Old Fisherman” are the other two songs on the disc.

Be sure to visit the S70 Web site at:

I’m really getting pumped for May 21. That’s the date for one of the rarest of occurrences: A public performance by the band known as Big River.

You may recall a story I wrote in the King City’s oldest (1865) newspaper a few years ago about the band whose only regular gig happens every August, along the Wabash River in Elizabethtown.

Big River has been described as Snake Lane Revue on steroids, since a number of SLR members play the Big River gig every year, along with some other musicians that could be playing much more regularly if they really wanted to.

These musicians, they slay me.

On May 21, Big River will headline Saturday night at the second annual GenkotaFest at the Genkota Winery. South of 70 will perform on Sunday, May 22.

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Enjoy this weeks terrestrial radio show, or the South of 70 show, and please be careful out there.

Don’t drink and drive or text and drive.

The Illinois State Police are counting on it.