Nashville based acclaimed guitarist, singer, songwriter JD Simo today releases his new LP, Songs From the House of Grease.
On this new collection, JD showcases his artistic growth as Songs From the House of Grease opens with JD’s take on hill country blues legend Mississippi Fred McDowell’s classic “Mortgage On My Soul”.
JD lends his signature style of blues rock to the tune creating a driving, face-melting guitar performance backed by long time collaborator and drummer Adam Abrashoff and bassist Todd Bolden. JD’s jazz chops are also on full display performing his version of the John Coltrane song “Afro Blue”.
Next up is the original “Missy’s Strut” further expanding on the interplay of the band, following with a cover version of Blind Afred Reed’s “How Can A Poor Man Stand Such Times And Live.” The album closes with “Higher Plane Pt 1 & Pt 2” where JD combines all of the elements heard throughout the record, huge guitars, jazz improvisation, and spotless synchronization between him and his band.
JD says, “This record really came together in a low-key manner. We had a little break from touring in June of last year. I asked the fellas to come over to cut some of the songs that we’ve been playing, but hadn’t been recorded yet. There really wasn’t much of a plan other than that. As a result, John Coltrane’s ‘Afro Blue’, Mississippi Fred McDowell’s ‘Mortgage On My Soul’ and Blind Alfred Reed’s ‘How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live’ were just fun to play. I think that comes through on the recordings just how comfortable and easy-going it was; it’s as if you’re in the room with us hanging out.”
While touring consistently in 2022 and creating his own new record, JD also lent his guitar chops to the critically acclaimed ELVIS movie. He was a key contributor in the scoring and creation of the soundtrack. JD’s love and respect for the roots of blues and rock n roll led him to be hand selected by music supervisor David Cobb to record all of the guitars for the blockbuster Elvis biopic. He is featured on 12 tracks from the official soundtrack, nominated for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media in the 2023 Grammys, including providing guitar samples for the viral hit “Vegas” by Doja Cat which has over 325 million streams on Spotify and was nominated for Best Rap Performance.
JD says, “Being part of the Elvis movie is the gift that keeps on giving. Truly the honor of my life to have been part of it. May the Grammy’s treat us well!”
JD released his previous LP Mind Control in November 2021. The album received critical praise from American Songwriter, American Blues Scene, among other outlets with Paste Magazine lauding “Simo has a history of working with a diverse range of sounds. On Mind Control, his reach is as thrilling and inviting as one expects.”
The JD Simo Duo (JD Simo and Adam Abrashoff) will be touring this February and March on a 16-date run across the Midwestern, Southern, and Eastern United States. More tour dates will be announced in the coming months.
Full tour schedule here: https://simo.fm/tour
About JD Simo
Rather than simply roll up to those fabled crossroads of blues lore, JD Simo builds a bridge by hand. The Chicago-born and Nashville-based singer, songwriter, guitarist, and producer connects the missing link between Motown and Woodstock as he fuses fluid and fiery fretwork with vital and vulnerable vocals. JD has been acclaimed by Rolling Stone, NPR, Guitar World, Relix, Paste Magazine, No Depression, and more.
Logging hundreds of gigs annually, he has collaborated with Jack White, Tommy Emmanuel, Luther Dickinson, Blackberry Smoke, and more. Not to mention, he graced the bills of festivals, including Bonnaroo, Warren Haynes Christmas Jam, and Mountain Jam. Phil Lesh, iconic co-founder of The Grateful Dead, invited him to join Phil Lesh and Friends.
JD was most recently hand picked by music supervisor David Cobb to record all of the guitars in Baz Luhrmann’s blockbuster Elvis. JD used his encyclopedic knowledge of blues and guitars to recreate the sounds of the iconic musicians from the era including Scotty Moore, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup, Muddy Waters, B.B. King, and more.
This meticulous attention to detail of sound, and his love for blues led him to create his upcoming album, Songs From The House of Grease. Recorded in just two days at his personal studio, JD recreated some of his favorite blues songs including John Coltrane’s “Afro Blue”, Blind Afred Reed’s “How Can A Poor Man Stand Such Times And Live”, Mississippi Fred McDowell’s “Mortgage on My Soul”, and a new Meter’s inspired cut and a free jazz take on his previously released original song, “Higher Plane”.
The new album showcases JD’s unparalleled guitar playing in a raw and inventive way. JD puts his signature modern take on these blues classics, while never losing the heart and soul of each artist’s original version.