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Rod Hamdallah's debut mixes modern sounds with the blues

Local blues fixture embraces new influences on his debut EP

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Although singer and guitarist Rod Hamdallah is known locally as a blues musician, his debut five song EP, Think About It, finds him embracing more contemporary influences. Hamdallah has taken a cue from Nashville's Legendary Shack Shakers, a band he joined as a guitarist in 2012, by mixing various rock and country sounds with gritty blues riffs and lyrics. While EP highlight "Heartbeat" does not stray far from Hamdallah's earlier blues recordings, its accordion intro gives it a traveling gypsy feel comparable to some of Jeffrey Butzer's musical output. Another keeper is the title track, a garage stomper featuring Shack Shakers frontman Col. J.D. Wilkes on Wurlitzer piano and banjo. There's even a straightforward blues rock number called "I Don't Mind" that sounds a lot like the Black Keys.

Think About It EP by Rod Hamdallah

Rod Hamdallah plays an EP release show with Black Linen and Jonah Swilley at the Star Bar on Thurs., May 22. Free. 10 p.m. 437 Moreland Ave. 404-681-9018. www.starbar.net.



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