Among the handful of talented musicians who call Richmond home is our pal Matt of Matthew E. White and Spacebomb Records. Matt and his band took on a throwback look for their most recent tour, rocking suits with none other than Ledbury shirts on stage. When Matt came to us to ask if he could also sport Ledbury during the photo shoot for his latest album, Fresh Blood, we were absolutely thrilled. The photos, featured here, were shot at Matt’s grandmother’s home, helping to evoke an authentic air of ethereal nostalgia.

Naturally, we asked Matt to put together a summer playlist for the relaunch of our blog. In Matt’s response, I believe the direct quote was, “Here is the playlist…it’s really good =).” Without fail, the playlist is really good. Below is a track list with a few words about what Matt digs about each tune. Stream “Summer is Coming” on spotify here, or scroll down to use the built-in Spotify player.

Summer is Coming: A mixtape for long days and late nights

Aaron Neville - Over You: Don’t make the mistake of ever making fun of Aaron Neville (you know, the guy who sings “the fabric of our lives” song). He’s a bad man.

Cookies - Don’t Say Nothin': I’ve been on a binge listening to all of the Carole King songs I can find. (Did you know she wrote Locomotion?!) This song is a Coca-Cola classic.

Moby Grape - I Am Not Willing: I dont know anything about this song or this band, but I love it. I dig that feeling.

Gene Pitney - Yours Until Tomorrow: Another Carole King classic. I tend to forget sometimes that behind these giant productions are some of the most personal lyrics. This falls into that “slightly dark and painful” but in a “I get it and kinda like it” kind of way. That’s a strange and all too common feeling.

John Martyn - Over The Hill: This guy is a new discovery for me — so, so, so good. Go find more, you will not regret it. He’s a refreshingly strange bag of tricks…it gets much weirder from here. Shallow end first.

Jimi Hendrix - Have You Ever Been (To Electric Ladyland): When I was in middle school I used to say that I didn’t like Jimi Hendrix. That was dumb. Sometimes the greatest are so easy to overlook - we think we “get it.” I was like that with Bob Dylan too a little. And the Stones. I’ve learned my lessons. But I’m still like that with The Boss. I do not like The Boss at all.

Sleepy Brown - Me and My Baby and My Cadillac: This is the single catchiest hook ever IMO. Ever. This is basically one thing, which is always funny. Staples Singers “I’ll Take You There” is like that too… one thing… so good you can never get enough.

Lee Perry - Bush Weed: Get your hands dirty. This is sticky music.

Johnson, Hawkins, Tatum and Durr - You Can’t Blame Me: I heard this song watching a documentary about the Knicks. It’s a deep cut. Im not always sympathetic towards deep cuts, but I like this one.

Louis Prima - Lazy River: Louis Prima has a bit of a bad reputation amongst “jazz” people. He’s silly, not particularly “serious.” He’s the guy singing in the Jungle Book for example. He’s all that for sure but so, so, so much more. One night on tour, we listened to this track over and over again driving around in circles in a parking lot in New Jersey at 3 o’clock in the morning.

J.J. Cale - Don’t Go To Strangers: Sweet southern heat.

Ann-Margret - You Turned My Head Around: This song is picked based 100% on the ridiculous guitar riff on the chorus. Lee Hazlewood produced this track, and for that he has my deepest respect.

The Velvet Underground - White Light White Heat: No introduction needed. Pure classic.

Simon & Garfunkel- The Only Living Boy in New York: My favorite S&G song. No song is better suited for a summer evening. “I can gather all the news I need on the weather report” - that is a great, great lyric.


Matt is touring with his incredible band, most of whom also reside in Richmond when they’re not on the road, throughout the remainder of summer and fall. The man puts on quite a show, and we’d highly recommend catching one if he happens to be coming to a city near you. Prepare yourself for steady, smooth vibes that are full of soul and riddled with honey-sweet “oohs" and “aahs."

Matthew E. White 2015 lead image (Credit Shawn Brackbil (1)

June 11, 2015 — Mel Calabro