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Premiere: Bill Toms and Hard Rain

I'd Be a Rich Man Today Good for My Soul

Pittsburgh native Bill Toms and his band Hard Rain deliver America’s most beloved genres and meld them into a poetic stories of everyday men and women doing their best to stay ahead and still keep a dream or two alive. His new album, Good for My Soul, offers foot-stomping, wall-shaking blend of soul, blues, gospel and rock vibes which, coupled with Toms’ own rough-hewn vocals, invite comparisons to such diverse greats as Dr. John, Little Feat, Bruce Springsteen, Joe Tex, The Blasters, Otis Redding, and Rufus Thomas. Oscar-winning composer Rick Witkowski co-produced the CD with Will Kimbrough (Rodney Crowell, Todd Snider), out on October 27.

Toms told Elmore, “‘I’d Be a Rich Man Today’ was written because of Major Lance, Jackie Wilson, Rufus Thomas, etc. I wrote it because Chuck Berry was an amazing lyricist. Because Bruce Springsteen had a hit with “Hungry Heart.” Because I listened to so many Albert King songs. You see, this track is the product of where I came from. I heard the music from Stax, Chess, Muscle Shoals, the Atlantic sides. I wanted that place again. If we can’t go to those places, you create your own. Because the art of ‘Shakin a Tail Feather’ should never be lost.”

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