Play Several Thousand
Play Change Gonna Come
Play Love and Hope
Play Samples from the entire album
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Songs on this album are:
1. Change Gonna Come
3. Several Thousand
4. Love and Hope
6. Shoot the Moon
7. Everywhere You Go
8. Counting On You
9. Annie Also Ran
10. No Blood
11. Sister Moon
12. Barbed Wire
Ben Arnold - Guitar, Organ, Vocals
Scott Bricklin - Bass, Vocals
Jim Boggia - Guitar, Vocals
Joseph Parsons - Guitar, Vocals
Matt Muir - Drums
(bold links above take you to the individual artist pages)
Originally conceived as an informal collaboration featuring four of the Philadelphia area's most talked-about artists, the arrival of 4 Way Street announces a fresh new sound that is greater than the sum of its considerable parts. Combining truly incredible vocal harmonies with a songwriting aesthetic both timeless and unmistakably modern for their debut on Sanctuary Records entitled "Pretzel Park". The band joins an uncanny pop sensibility with deep roots in folk and rock music to create a sound all their own.
The project's genesis came in 2000 when each of the members of 4 Way Street found themselves at an open mic together. At the end of the night they were cajoled onstage to do some songs together. Completely unrehearsed, Ben Arnold, Jim Boggia, Joseph Parsons and Scott Bricklin made their way through three or four songs and soon discovered that when they sang together (which they had never done before that night) it was something pretty special, a non-traditional blend of harmonies which featured each individual's voice.
Soon after, Bruce Warren, Program Director of eclectic and influential public radio station WXPN, renowned for their nationally syndicated "World Cafe" program asked the group to perform at the annual WXPN Singer-Songwriter Festival. The group's spontaneous and undeniable energy proved to be a highlight of the festival and paved the way for future collaboration.
After a follow up performance at the 2002 WXPN festival, Warren noted: "they completely engaged the 8,000 plus audience - in a crowded bill of artists including more popular names like John Mayer, Nick Lowe, and Sonia Dada, 4 Way Street were the festival favorite and got a rousing ovation." After several one-off appearances and festivals, word began to spread of the group winning over audiences at an unprecedented rate. At the annual Appel Farm Festival, sales of their demo CD broke the 14-year single day sales record set by David Gray.
Related artists: Craig Bickhardt
Drawing on their varied backgrounds, each member contributes equally to the band's distinctive sound. Ben Arnold takes the lead on the track "Maze" - matching his bluesy, soulful growl with the impeccable four-part harmony that is the band's trademark. Scott Bricklin begins "Counting on You" with a McCartney-esque build in a minor key before bringing in harmony for a chorus with epic sweep. "Several Thousand" showcases Jim Boggia's crystal clear voice and timeless pop songwriting. On "Ceremony," Joseph Parsons' baritone delivery drives a lyric both personal and moving, a perfect counterpart to Boggia's high backgrounds. The carefree and bouncy "Shoot the Moon," further showcases the interplay between voices, with each member contributing lead vocals, something the band continue to display on recent additions "Change Gonna Come" and "No Blood". The album, self-produced by the members of 4 Way Street, was mixed by David Bianco (The Jayhawks, Tom Petty, Santana) and Phil Nicolo (John Lennon, Bob Dylan, Urge Overkill) who were able to put their distinctive stamp on "Pretzel Park".
Each of 4 Way Street's members has had considerable success as a solo artist. Signed to Columbia Records, guitarist and keyboardist Ben Arnold released his debut album "Almost Speechless" in 1995, received an ASCAP songwriting award for his song "Everywhere You Go" and earned Top 12 DIY recognition from Performing Songwriter magazine. Bassist Scott Bricklin released records on A&M; with his group Bricklin and more recently on Hybrid/Sire as Martin's Dam, in addition to gaining recognition as a talented session player and producer. Guitarist Joseph Parsons has released three albums for European label Blue Rose, and has toured extensively overseas and in the U.S., gaining a loyal following and rave reviews. After working as a sideman for a variety of artists including Jill Sobule and Julianna Hatfield, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Jim Boggia released his first independent album Fidelity is the Enemy in 2001.
Recommended playlist: It's Only Roy
On their debut "Pretzel Park", these four gifted artists come together and show a willingness to push musical boundaries, evident on tracks that range from the intricate vocal harmony of the traditional melody "Barbed Wire" to the driving eastern-influenced "Sister Moon." Throughout, the lyrics reveal a rare degree of sophistication and introspection, adding depth to the overriding youthful spirit and optimism that mark the album's twelve songs. It is clear that together they have found their collective voice and forged a new sound that is as refreshing as it is compelling.
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