Indie musicians have it rough these days in the treacherous music business. Now more than ever, bands have to be extremely savvy at “creative marketing” when it comes to booking tours and getting their music out to the public. The Los Angeles husband and wife team of Alexa James and Rory Partin go by the name of The ROAMies, and they seem to have this whole “how to do a national tour” thing all figured out. They’re currently in the midst of a coast-to-coast tour of coffeehouses, inns, restaurants and wineries, and the entire thing is being sponsored by Wholly Guacamole® (which, for the record, is made from hand-scooped avocados — yum!).
So back to our dynamic duo. What’s the music like? Absolutely charming. At times boasting a vintage vibe (such as on their lovely “Me and My Shadow” Frank Sinatra cover), their most recent song “Oh, My My” is delightfully sunny, feel-good strings and harmonies Americana. The lyrics are upbeat, the melodies are catchy, but there’s enough ‘old soul’ in there not to be saccharine.
The ROAMies began separately and toured together (though not as a duo) before fans suggested that they join forces. Alexa had recorded several studio albums, with a #1 song and other tunes in the Top 10, and was even named Hot Adult Contemporary Artist of the Year at the L.A. Music Awards. Not to be outdone, Rory also had a #1 radio single and performed in more than 30 countries. Together, they’ve racked up a few awards as well. Their very different solo sounds (Partin is more Big Band, while James has a contemporary pop vibe) dictated that they form a separate and totally unique new sound. What they came up with is a melding of Partin’s South Louisiana roots with James’ hook-y melodies and upbeat lyrics. They’re accompanied by keyboards, acoustic guitar, mando guitar and ukulele for something quirky, charming and folksy — or, as they say, “happy Americana.”
On this current tour, they’re joined by Swiss guitarist Michel Heinzmann, who has previously toured with The ROAMies on three European tours.
Oh, and by the way, Wine Enthusiast Magazine suggests that you pair those avocado dishes with a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, a sparkling wine or a Pinot Grigio. Bon appétit!
8/9 & 8/10 – Fort Knox, Ft. Knox, KY
8/12 – Gray’s On Main, Franklin, TN
8/13 – Smith’s Olde Bar, The Atlanta Room, Atlanta, GA
8/18 – Four Seasons, Temecula, CA
8/19 – Lorimar-Old Town Tasting Room, Temecula, CA
8/20 – Danza del Sol, Temecula, CA
8/21 – Robert Renzoni Vineyards, Temecula, CA
8/22 – Bar Lubitsch, West Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA
8/24 – Naked Lounge Coffee House, Sacramento, CA
8/25 – Barmel, Carmel- By The Sea, CA
8/27 – Macy’s European Coffeehouse & Bakery- Flagstaff, AZ
8/28 – The Cell, Albuquerque, NM (pending)
8/30 – Taos Inn, Taos, NM
8/31 – Mercury Cafe, Denver, CO
9/1 – The Lariat, Buena Vista, CO
9/3 – Solider Creek Winery, Fort Dodge, IA
9/4 – Uncommon Ground, Chicago, IL
9/6 – Evangeline’s, St. Louis, MO