Nick Greer & the G's Heart On Fire CD Release Warehouse Live June 27, 2014
Its not his voice alone that stuns you, it's the emotion and life behind the voice of Nick Greer that reminds you why and how much you love music. It's not the strokes of his keyboard that are particularly astounding (although they very much are), rather the balance between his delicate touch and the forceful brigade of sound that Greer and his band create.
Friday, the Green Room at Warehouse Live was packed wall to wall for the CD release party for Heart On Fire, the newest offering from Nick Greer & The G's. Rocks Off was in attendance at April's preview event at Wire Road Studios that was attended by friends, family and the Trill OG himself. We heard then about the life trials that have fueled the songwriting and provided motivation to produce something grand and special with this new work; after hearing more tracks from the album, we feel totally confident that Greer has succeeded.
After beginning with a song entitled "Respect," Greer played the track "Trippin," which was the first single we previewed back in April. The song speaks about surrender and the need to remember, but what it really sounds like is the dramatic score of a major music picture, perhaps during the big action sequence or the closing-credits montage.
What Greer brings to the table is exponentially reflected back to him by his band. He has expressed his appreciation for how in tune and tight the Dave Matthews Band sounds, but I can tell you that the G's are about as glorious and in sync as any multiplatinum, Grammy-winning act out there today. They are just so damn good. And loud, you can't forget loud.
The mood and tempo slowed down during "Caving In," a bluesy soul track with a broken heart and need for transformation. Again, we can feel the beat of the bandleader's heart as he expresses his deep-rooted thoughts and feelings. A lone violin sets the mood and is a perfect complement to the tearful vocal delivery.
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The band shifted between soul, funk, hip-hop, jazz and Latin music all through the night, clearly having fun with each song and shining brilliantly with each solo. One of life's basic questions is contemplated during "Do You Love Me?", where Greer asks his love interest to "set me free" if his love is not reciprocated. "Leave Me Alone," "Pours" and "Thank God" all hit onto the heartstrings, but the song "Trouble" really stood out. Its opening lines are exceptional, and so very appropriate for Greer:
Excuse me if I'm, causing trouble...
Trouble finds me, somebody hide me.
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It then evolved into a sweet proclamation of love that deserves to be reciprocated with the type of love that most of us can only dream about. "You're like the only thing, that makes my heart sing," Greer finished as his saxophone player delivered a tremendous solo.
Nearing the end of the night, the G's revved up for "Black Cadillac," a locomotive of a song with quick staccato strikes and a buildup that never stops for gas. With his love for Kendrick Lamar, Greer was able to mash up "Swimming Pools" with this track, enticing the crowd to rap and sing about po'in up drank and being faded. It definitely did not kill the vibe.
Personal Bias: If everyone had at least one ounce of heart and talent that Greer has, the world would be a much better place.
The Crowd: G's onstage, G's in the crowd. Packed like sardines and loving every note.
Overheard In the Crowd: "I love you, Houston! I like pussy, but I love Houston more!"
Random Notebook Dump: After working a very long gig that day, I was so very tired when I walked into this show. But the power of music healed me up quick, which made this a supremely memorable night and left me thanking the heavens that this is my job.
Heart On Fire is now available on Greer's Bandcamp page.
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