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The Isam Band

Album: Stay Awhile (2007)

Artist: The Isam Band

Label: self-released

Where available/price: Lou's Records in Encinitas for $9.99. Online at isamband.com for $12.

Songs: 1) Gypsy Girl 2) You Stole Their Hearts 3) Stay Awhile 4) When You're Close 5) I Wouldn't Mind Knowing 6) Birds Hover 7) Sweet Little Angel of Mine 8) Psychic Hotline 9) Showtime Baby 10) Fell In and Fallen 11) Fourteen Years 12) Louise 13) Whoever Brought You Near

Musicians: Isam Khoury (vocals, guitar), Bill Adams (vocals, harmonica), Paul Anderson (bass, guitar), Michael Singer (keyboard), Dave Santoro (drums, percussion), Peter Sprague (guitar), Tripp Sprague (saxophone, flute), Sara Anderson (vocals), Lauren Widney (vocals)

This CD is divided almost equally into three parts. The first few songs are happy, snappy piano tunes with a sprinkle of honky-tonk electric guitar and a bit of harmonica. I appreciate the piano, and it's played well. This part of the album is rooted in Americana, only the tempo is a bit slower than raucous small-town bar music. The band plays this bit with journeyman skill, but they never get comfortable enough to excel.

Midway through the album, the band switches gears to a combination of blues and lounge, only the tempo is even further restrained. Given that blues and lounge are already slowish and Isam's throttle is set at about 1/3 speed, you can imagine these songs aren't going to get the band onstage at the MTV Teen Attention Deficit Disorder Music Awards.

Delving even deeper into somnolent inspiration, we get to the last few tracks, 10 to 13. These approach lullaby speed, and Isam's voice is gravelly sweet, like your dad reading a bedtime story two days before Christmas. Even for the "soft rock" genre, this CD is a snoozer.

If it weren't for track 11, "Fourteen Years," I'd only recommend this CD as an alternative to warm milk. But, ah, track 11 is an acoustic offering near the brilliance of Crosby, Stills, and Nash. I wish I had an album of songs just like it.

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Album: Stay Awhile (2007)

Artist: The Isam Band

Label: self-released

Where available/price: Lou's Records in Encinitas for $9.99. Online at isamband.com for $12.

Songs: 1) Gypsy Girl 2) You Stole Their Hearts 3) Stay Awhile 4) When You're Close 5) I Wouldn't Mind Knowing 6) Birds Hover 7) Sweet Little Angel of Mine 8) Psychic Hotline 9) Showtime Baby 10) Fell In and Fallen 11) Fourteen Years 12) Louise 13) Whoever Brought You Near

Musicians: Isam Khoury (vocals, guitar), Bill Adams (vocals, harmonica), Paul Anderson (bass, guitar), Michael Singer (keyboard), Dave Santoro (drums, percussion), Peter Sprague (guitar), Tripp Sprague (saxophone, flute), Sara Anderson (vocals), Lauren Widney (vocals)

This CD is divided almost equally into three parts. The first few songs are happy, snappy piano tunes with a sprinkle of honky-tonk electric guitar and a bit of harmonica. I appreciate the piano, and it's played well. This part of the album is rooted in Americana, only the tempo is a bit slower than raucous small-town bar music. The band plays this bit with journeyman skill, but they never get comfortable enough to excel.

Midway through the album, the band switches gears to a combination of blues and lounge, only the tempo is even further restrained. Given that blues and lounge are already slowish and Isam's throttle is set at about 1/3 speed, you can imagine these songs aren't going to get the band onstage at the MTV Teen Attention Deficit Disorder Music Awards.

Delving even deeper into somnolent inspiration, we get to the last few tracks, 10 to 13. These approach lullaby speed, and Isam's voice is gravelly sweet, like your dad reading a bedtime story two days before Christmas. Even for the "soft rock" genre, this CD is a snoozer.

If it weren't for track 11, "Fourteen Years," I'd only recommend this CD as an alternative to warm milk. But, ah, track 11 is an acoustic offering near the brilliance of Crosby, Stills, and Nash. I wish I had an album of songs just like it.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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