December 19th, 2001
"Love Street" is the third release for this band from St Charles, IL,
following on from the already popular releases "Panning for Gold" and
"New Releases", released in 1999 and 2000 respectively. The band is Ray
Johnson on string, Tom Wade on Harmonica, Accordion and percussion and
Dave Bieritz on Bass. Ray and Tom also provide the vocals between them,
and make a good job of it too!
Formed in the Autumn of 1996 for the purposes of producing original
material, Saldo Kreek have come a long way in the years since. They
still pride themselves on the performance of all original material,
promoting and producing their own albums in-house - these guys really
care about what they do, something which this reviewer always finds
refreshing in a world full of big time hopefuls who can't sing a note
Saldo Kreek not only CAN sing, but they produce foot-tapping tunes which
stick around in the mind for some time. It has always puzzled me how so
many bands from my side of the ocean (Britain) churn out the same dreary
pop songs day after day in order to please the crowds while our American
Cousins constantly pour their heart into differing musical styles which
draw fans from far and wide. Take note, would be singer/songwriters -
you may be able to get your songs into the charts, but wouldn't you like
people to say "Wow - they're a little different aren't they?"
Musically, Saldo Kreek are pleasant to listen to and provide what we
call background music here in the UK. The guitar riffs are exceptional,
at times reminiscent of Clapton himself, and during track 10 - "You
Can't Come In" - I was strongly reminded of some of Dire Straits better
In certain parts
of America this style - country folk - is very popular indeed and draws
crowds from far and wide. It is in these places that bands of this type
fight for the top spot, and many often fall by the wayside. I've seen
both good and bad when I've been in the deep south, and can say in all
honesty that Saldo Kreek are one of the better choices in this genre.
However, this is a hard market to crack for different reasons in
different regions - in the UK, for example, many people turn their nose
up at Country/Blues/Jazz artists and say "Why can't they play proper
music like we hear in the charts?!?". In parts of the US, on the other
hand, the market is so overcrowded with bands of a similar ilk that they
might all have a fight on their hands!
This, I have to confess, is my type of
music and would take pride of place in my collection, but it definitely
serves a very particular market. If it's your proverbial cup of tea,
then rush on over to the web-site immediately and grab yourself a copy -
otherwise, switch the radio on and check out the latest charts!
Saldo Kreek can be heard on College
Radio in Louisville, KY and Arkansas State University, and on the
internet via Dhnet Radio in South Carolina among others. The band can be
heard on local radio at WRMN in Elgin, IL and at WFXW in St Charles, IL
and seem to be constantly on the lookout for new opportunities to be
But if these resources are a little out of your locality, you can check
them out at their official website: http://www.saldokreek.com.
I'm sure you won't be disappointed.
New Releases 2000
By Jim Santo - Demo Universe
April 9, 2001
Here's a pleasant set of gentle acoustic pop-rock on the second
self-released LP by this drumless Chi-town combo. Songwriters Ray
Johnson (vocals, guitars) and Tom Wade (vocals, harmonica, accordion,
percussion) are ably supported by acoustic and electric bassist Dave
Bieritz and Carrie Davids, who plays both conventional violin and the
rarely encountered baritone violin (tuned an octave down for a rich,
strong tone, it's made an appearance on several Dave Grisman LPs).
Johnson and Wade harmonize beautifully as the band lovingly renders
these well-crafted, thoughtful songs. Seals And Crofts came to mind,
absent the ersatz orientalism (that's a compliment, by the way), as well
as John Sebastian, Arlo Guthrie and other second-wave folkies. At this
writing, a third long-player, recorded in and around Nashville, had just
arrived. Wouldn't mind hearing it.