Joe Stickley's Blueprint
“It is a testament to the quality of his songwriting, which is as close to flawless as a young, unknown Missourian is likely to get."
With creative attention focused on the art of storytelling, Stickley’s Blue Print features a technical foundation of rock and contemporary folk musings arranged with care and attention to detail.
The group’s debut album, Friendship's Quiet, was released in 2003. Between albums Stickley has been concentrating on his live shows, touring from his home state of Missouri, where he was recently named Best Songwriter by St. Louis’s definitive musical voice, The Riverfront Times, through Kansas, New Mexico, Colorado, California, Oregon and Washington. Seizing this momentum, the band is now releasing their sophomore effort, The Eagle and The Pearl.
Stickley has come to characterize The Eagle and The Pearl as “the soul of an American band and surrogate family.” The family consists of Wil Reeves (bass, vocals), Sean Canan (guitar, vocals), Danny Carroll (drums), Andrew Weir (keyboards), and, of course, Joe Stickley (vocals, guitar).
Within the first thirty seconds of the Pearl, the listener can feel the landing gear retract below as instrumental harmonies facilitate the abandonment of day-to-day worries. With the opening lyric “Welcome to the show” Stickley warmly receives fellow journeymen who have opted to experience the sights and sounds that are The Eagle and The Pearl.
Like any major destination, The Eagle and The Pearl has nooks and crannies diverse enough to keep listeners coming back. Title track, “The Eagle and The Pearl”, along with “Vandalia Pain” and “Lead Love” offer listeners Stickley’s take on popular American roots rock. Conversely, the quiet inflections of “Love You Madly”, “Little Lou”, and “Traffic In Harmonia” offer intimate portrayals of love, family and the possibility of redemption. At the very heart of the record is Stickley’s adaptation of Blind Willie Johnson’s haunting “Soul of a Man”.
“Writing these songs, I was simply responding to the questions we all face, life’s questions. Have I provided answers? Maybe in some ways, for some people. Really, I think I’ve just spun the wheel, kept the dialogue going. What is the soul of a man? Answer if you can.”
Joe Stickley - Vocals/Guitar
Wil Reeves - Bass/Vocals
Danny Carroll - Drums/Percussion
Sean Canan - Guitar/Mandolin/Vocals
Andrew Weir - Keyboards/Melodica