Posted tagged ‘Northern California’

Artist Spotlight: Toree McGee

May 25, 2016

My 3 year old is currently in her room. Her music is turned up really loud and she’s dancing around to California Gurls by Katy Perry (yeah, I know. What’s up with that, right?).

But the song got me back to thinking about doing another spotlight on a California grown country artist. Or in this case, a “California Girl”. Let me introduce you to Toree McGee.

Toree2

Gifted with a rafter-reaching soprano range and a voice that brings out a true grit and fire, McGee describes her music as a blend of “Woodstock rock ‘n’ roll, and  sparkly country.” Interesting mix, but you’ll soon understand where she gets it from and why it works!

First a little background.

McGee’s grandparents were part of a traveling gospel quartet, and her father was a singer in what can only be described as a “garage rock band”. Her father can be credited with giving McGee her love of classic rock and her passion for music, while her mother gravitated toward classic country.

Not surprising that I enjoy her live shows (I’ve probably caught here 5-6 times now) with my professed love for classic rock and country music.

McGee has some of the strongest vocals I’ve heard in a long time. Her musical style embodies elements of her influences, ranging from the sounds of The Judds and LeAnn Rimes, to  Guns N’ Roses and Aerosmith. She also embodies the vocals of Janis Joplin.

In her own words:

“I was a really big fan of Janis Joplin for a long time. I loved her uniqueness and how you could feel her emotion when she sang. But the whole rock ‘n’ roll kind of jagged edge thing wasn’t really me all the way. I always had a sunshiny personality, and I wasn’t as hardened as the rock scene was. Country music always made me happy, and everything always brought me back to that.”

McGee had her first performance as an opening act with a 30 minute set for country music superstar, Clay Walker in San Jose at the Rodeo Club, followed by another opening slot for one of my favorites: A Thousand Horses.

While she throws a lot of great cover songs into her typical setlist, McGee has a few of her own including “Run Right Back to You” and her first single, “Amen”.

Amen

“Amen”, gained airplay on Northern California radio stations and climbed to the #1 slot on 95.3 KRTY’s ‘Hot 9 @ 9’ segment. It has also gained the attention of Sirius/XM radio, as well as local news stations. The aforementioned “Amen” was released on March 31, 2015 and her full EP was officially released in October 2015. I’ve got it. You should too!

In speaking of her EP, McGee says:

“I wanted to blend my love of hard rock and country together. I have this heavy-hitting, gravelly tone I can get in my voice, and I didn’t want to lose that side of me that played in bars and grew up in bars. But country has always been my favorite genre of music. That’s where I want to be, but I want to bring a bit of that old style of rock with me.”

I mentioned her live sets earlier. Now besides her own songs, she also loves to fill her set lists with a few cover songs. Here’s just a sample of a few that I enjoy:

My Church

Girl Crush

Someone Like You

Piece of my Heart

Stay

Son of a Preacher Man

But what I enjoy the most about McGee, is her happy go lucky personality and her passion for life and her music. Nothing sums this up better than the moment she first heard herself on the radio when Randy Jones played “Amen” for the first time on KRTY. This is what it’s all about!

If you haven’t checked her out before, do so now. Also, make sure you keep up with her via her website or follow her on Twitter at @ToreeMcGee and Facebook for her latest news and concert schedule.

Don’t forget to check out her music on iTunes, Amazon and Google Play.

So what did I miss? Have you seen Toree McGee live? What do you think of her? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Are You Ready for a South California?

July 12, 2011

A politician in my home state of California, Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone, is proposing that the state split in half as a way to address political and logistical issues.

I’ve heard this story many times before and it’s never had enough legs. Maybe this time? Who knows…

From Time:

“This has struck a chord with a lot of people in the state who have suffered economically,” Stone, a Republican, told the Los Angeles Times. “We know it’s going to be a challenge to form a second state, but it’s not a impossible. We’re sending a message.”

Although actual secession may be unlikely, Stone and his supporters are sending a disgruntled message to Sacramento, where they allege Democratic Governor Jerry Brown is engaged in policies that do not reflect the ideals of half his state. In fact, Stone’s proposal calls California an “ungovernable” state in financial crisis where residents are suffering steep taxes to pay for welfare and illegal immigrants.

“After local governments have been cut to the bone, the state Legislature again passed a local government grab in their 2011-12 quasi-balanced budget with the same old gimmicky and overstated revenue predictions that will not materialize,” Stone wrote in his proposal report. “I have come to the conclusion that the state of California is too big to govern, that the political priorities of Southern California and Northern California are completely different.”

6.0 Earthquake Strikes Off Coast of Northern California

February 4, 2010

The first reports I saw were that it was a 6.0 about 50 miles WSW of Eureka.

That’s about 5 hours north of here though…whew 🙂

From BNO News:

The earthquake had a preliminary magnitude of 6.0.

“The magnitude is such that a tsunami is not expected,” the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center said in a statement. “However, in coastal areas of intense shaking, locally generated tsunamis can be triggered by underwater landslides.”

There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties from the earthquake, which happened at 12.20 p.m. local time.

From Fox 40:

A magnitude-6.0 earthquake rattled the nerves of some residents living in Eureka Thursday afternoon, but did little in the way of damage or injuries.

The quake was centered along the Northern California coastline about 40 miles away from Eureka and struck shortly after 12:20pm local time. FOX40 News viewers from as far as Chico report they felt some shaking.

Employees at Ramone’s Bakery & Cafe in Eureka told FOX40 News by phone they felt minor shaking, but said as far as they were aware there was no damage in town.

From Reuters:

The quake struck at a depth of seven miles (11.2 km) a distance of 35 miles (56 km) west-northwest of Petrolia, California, the USGS said.

No tsunami warning was issued and there was no immediate report of damage.