Joanna Connor releases her new single “Destination” produced by and featuring Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith, on Friday February 26th; on the same day she releases her new album “4801 South Indiana Avenue” via Bonamassa’s new record label KTBA Records (Keeping the Blues Alive). To celebrate the new single, Joanna has just premiered the official music video for the single on YouTube.
Chicago-based slide guitar virtuoso and singer-songwriter Joanna Connor is best known as one of the reigning Queens of blues rock guitar. Joanna has played guitar with the who’s who of blues including the likes of James Cotton, Buddy Guy, Luther Allison, Jimmy Page, and Junior Wells. Debuting at Chicago’s premiere blues club Kingston Mines in the 1980s, she played there three nights a week ever since, in between gigs at larger clubs and festivals, before the spread of the pandemic earlier this year.
An aggressively edgy and highly innovative blues rock guitarist with a tight groove that encompasses jazz and funk, Joanna is hailed by many as one of the most powerful and influential female guitarists in the world.
Joanna’s new “Destination” single features Joanna on lead vocals and slide guitar, Joe Bonamassa on guitar and backing vocals, Josh Smith on guitar, backing vocals by Jimmy Hall, and Reese Wynans on keys (ex-Stevie Ray Vaughan’s Double Trouble).
Says Joanna, “Destination is a real house rocking tune written by a somewhat overlooked band called The Assassins, led by Jimmy Thackeray. It was made sweeter by the soulful background vocals of Jimmy Hall. Joe and Josh joined on as well. It’s a great showcase for my frantic and frenetic guitar work.”
Joanna also releases her new album “4801 South Indiana Avenue” on Joe Bonamassa’s new independent blues record label Keeping The Blues Alive on Friday 26th February 2021.
Says Joanna, “We chose the album title “4801 South Indiana Avenue” because it was the actual street address of the hallowed funky blues sanctuary “Theresa’s Lounge.” We want the listener to open that door, walk in and feel to their core some of the magic that a place like that brought night after night. It was an honour to bring this to you the listener.
Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith play guitar on every track on the new album. The guitar playing on the album is impeccable, raw and really exciting to listen to. There is almost a live feel on all the tracks which makes the songs jump out of the speakers.
Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith produced the album at Ocean Way Sound in Nashville in February 2020 (a month after Joe recorded his “Royal Tea” album at Abbey Road Studios in London). Joe banned guitar effects pedals from the recording of the album, and brought in vintage amps from his personal collection. All songs were performed in one, two or three takes. Any songs that didn’t nail it in three takes were not included on the album.
“Destination” is a raw and gritty blues rock cover of the Assassins classic. Stream the single and pre-order the album from www.jbonamassa.com/albums/2021/joannaconnor/4801.
The new album, the follow up to her critically acclaimed studio album “Rise,” is produced by Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith at Ocean Way Studios, Nashville, Tennessee. Joanna and Joe and the rest of the musicians on the album dug deep, and in the process, conjured up an authentic, alive and kicking non-derivative set of Chicago Blues.
The new album reflects an entirely new experience from the way Joanna has recorded music in the past. “This album is a homage to the blues school that I attended in Chicago,” says Joanna. “We attempted to capture the spirit of tradition and inject it with raw energy and passion.”
Joanna’s album has received unanimous rave reviews and many are citing her new release as one of the blues albums of 2021, even though we are still in February!