alumni association

Alumni Update: Brett Detar

One of our fan-favorite programs of 2012 featured Brett Detar, formerly of the Juliana Theory, but his music has long since left that behind.

You can get his new album, Too Free To Live, for free for a limited time on As Detar says,

I poured my heart & soul into these songs & this album – and I’m pretty sure it even tried to kill me once or twice. It’s been a hard-fought labor of love and I believe you can hear that when you listen (speaking of listening – huge thanks to my brothers the Mardos who went way above and beyond engineering and mixing it).

brett detar cover

Detar also shares the link for his tour-mate, Joseph West’s, new EP, which is available for free at

Alumni Update: Hard Working Americans

Sort of an Alumni Association party for Country Fried Rock, combining the various talents of our alumni, Neal Casal (Chris Robinson Brotherhood), Kevn Kinney (Drivin N Cryin), and Kevin Gordon with the band assembled by Todd Snider and Dave Schools (Widespread Panic).

Buy their music here Hard Working Americans on Amazon or Hard Working Americans on iTunes.

Here’s how Hard Working Americans describe themselves:

What do you get when you take a batch of incredible songs, five veteran players who have never played together, with an arsenal of five musical minds working in unison to reinvent them? You get Hard Working Americans. Hard Working Americans is the self-titled debut from this new musicians’ collective, scheduled for a January 21 release on Melvin Records/Thirty Tigers. Genres meld seamlessly with the birth of this group, featuring artists from the Americana, singer/songwriter, experimental, jam and rock communities. Hard Working Americans is: Todd Snider (vox), Dave Schools of Widespread Panic (bass), Neal Casal of The Chris Robinson Brotherhood (guitars/vox), Chad Staehly of Great American Taxi (keys) and Duane Trucks of Col. Bruce Hampton’s school of music and Trucks family lineage (drums).

Hard Working Americans features 11 tracks written by a range of artists that include Randy Newman, Lucinda Williams, Kevin Gordon, Hayes Carll, Kevn Kinney (Drivin’ ‘N Cryin’), Gillian Welch & Dave Rawlings, Brian Henneman (The Bottle Rockets), Will Kimbrough, Tommy Womack, Kieran Kane, Chuck Mead (BR5-49), Don Herron and Frankie Miller (Elizabeth Cook). As the five band members came together, they had no idea what to expect. Snider, known more as a songwriter than interpreter of songs, would just start singing and clapping, which then set the creative ideas in motion with his new band mates. This was uncharted territory as the players had not worked together previously, but it became an uninhibited, creative and fruitful environment as their chemistry was almost instant, a very pleasant surprise. In the end, the group created fresh and uniquely original arrangements of great songs, led by Snider’s intrepid vocals and backed by a band of virtuosos. The songs were then sequenced in an order that tells a story of the everyday person, the blue-collar worker, the frustrated, the struggling, the Hard Working American.

Hard Working Americans was produced by Dave Schools and Todd Snider. Special guests include John Popper and John Keane. The album was recorded at Bob Weir’s TRI Studios is San Rafael, CA, mastered by Bob Ludwig and mixed by John Keane. Look for Hard Working Americans on tour in early 2014.

Scott Low (of Efren)

Country Fried Rock alum, Scott Low of Efren, has new solo music coming soon. Low shared a song for Vol. 1 For Nuci’s Space, as well. Low is a prolific writer, not bound by genre, meaning each record is an island unto itself. He lets the songs go where they will, not trying to force them into any continuity.

Huge thanks to Popa’s Tunes for pointing out that Low has shared some of his upcoming music with you all!

Download and enjoy!