My Soft Rock Girlfriend (Big Stir Digital Single No. 44)
Blake Jones & The Trike Shop
The newest BIG STIR DIGITAL SINGLE (at www.bigstirrecords.com/big-stir-digital-singles as always) returns us to our roots with one of our original core bands and “Founding Fathers” as BLAKE JONES & THE TRIKE SHOP offer up an ode to “My Soft Rock Girlfriend”, b/w an all-new and exclusive B-side, “Disentangled”! Both sides are out Friday, September 20 and are available for pre-order now.
Fresno, CA legends BLAKE JONES & THE TRIKE SHOP can (but probably wouldn't!) boast of a rich history as the Central Valley's premiere purveyors of “art-infected pop” – always inventive, always melodic, always infused with equal parts Beatles, Zappa, and the unique perspective that comes from pride in their local community and its artists and quirks. The fact that the band is led by Blake himself on vocals, guitar and of course theremin (!), and features the flute and harmonies of Barbara Anderson-Jones give some inkling of the singular sound of the Trike Shop. Backed by the stalwart rhythm section of John Shafer (drums) and Martin Hansen (bass) with Michael Scott on co-lead guitar and harmonies, Blake has taken the band, always a live favorite, to appearances as far-flung as the UK and Germany, and they've anchored every single Big Stir Burbank Anniversary show since the first one.
“My Soft Rock Girlfriend” is a belated and much-requested proper single from the Trike Shop's 2018 LP Make, their first release on Big Stir Records and their fifth (or sixth, depending on whom you ask!) album overall. As an album cut it's been featured on terrestrial and internet radio stations worldwide, including Rodney Bingenheimer's Sirius XM program and it's overdue for an official standalone release – one of Blake's most relatably snarky tunes, evoking early XTC but nodding to the titular yacht rock's tropes at times and bursting (as is the album) with Jones' irrepressible enthusiasm for his local music and arts scene. Its single release comes along with a brand new video for the song, featuring cameos from many of the band's friends from the Big Stir Records roster and beyond, which will debut along the single on Friday, at Big Stir's various online platforms and on YouTube (go to trikeshopfilm starting on the release date)!
The flip side “Disentangled” is fresh off the mixing board at Jones' own Whispermaphone Studios and appears here for the first time ever. Clever as always and steeped in Beach Boys-influenced harmonies, it's a definite keeper and destined to be a highlight of the B-sides section of the forthcoming Big Stir Singles: The Fourth Wave CD.
The release coincides with the debut of Blake Jones' newly concocted solo live reworking of the Make LP into a songs-and-stories performance piece for the Mini-Rogue Festival, an extension of Fresno's celebrated city-wide festival showcasing the art and music of the city and its environs. Check the Trike Shop's online outlets for more details about the Festival and look for the A-side's video on September 20!
Expected release: September 20, 2019