January 2, 2021 . . . Happy New Year A Day Late!!!!!!!! New "News", as it were . . .
"I Hear Voices!" is now available in its entirety at Spotify and all the usual internet music outlets, so if you missed out on a hard copy (sold out, thank you!) it's now available for download. Along the same lines, we're probably a month or so from a second pressing of same . . . keep an eye out for that on the "Listen, Enjoy, Buy" page.
What else? While rummaging through the archives (aren't we all doing it during these strange times?) We came across a box of "Holiday Heroes" CDs . . . If you're not familiar with it, the CD contains the original release of "My Christmas Wish", and I was honored to be part of an amazing lineup of artists on this effort, including Mavis Staples, Bobby Womack, Graham Parker, Jerry Butler, Chuck Jackson and many others (look THOSE names up!) I know it's a late arrival but let's face it . . . nowadays Christmas is always right around the corner . . .
More News??? . . . should be dropping the first single from the forthcoming "I Hear Other Voices!! (Hardly Strictly A Cappella)" within the next couple weeks, with a lyric video up soon on YouTube. I can't begin to tell you how much fun I had revisiting and reinventing these tracks, stripping them down to bare bones and digging out some charming studio banter. In fact this second version of "Voices!" includes an unreleased bonus track, "Mama Said (There'd Be Days Like This)", and of course a wonderfully candid, intimate version of "Slow Twistin'" with yours truly duetting with a then-fourteen-year-old Gabi Wilson, the future H.E.R. . . .
Have fun, stay sane, be good to the ones that matter . . .
December 20, 2020 . . . kind-of feels like there's a chance the veil of darkness and uncertainty might start lifting a little this coming year, right? My heart goes out to all of those folks - and extended family members, and friends - who were personally affected by this terrible epidemic in one way or another . . . stranger than fiction, but then again we should have known this day would come. Condolences to all . . . .
On a musical note, "I Hear Voices!" LPs are officially sold out, with no plans of a second pressing. Thanks AND congrats to the last ten buyers, and especially Greg W. down there in Texas, who purchased the LAST COPY!
As mentioned last newsletter, a second pressing of my "I Hear Voices!" CD will soon be available on this site, and FINALLY the re-mixed/reworked/remastered "I Hear Other Voices!! (Hardly Strictly A Cappella)" should be available by February at the latest. It's an amazing 'rework' of "Voices!", and it will also include a bonus track that never made the first round - "Mama Said There'd Be Days Like This". My duet "Slow Twistin" with the now-famous "H.E.R." will be the first tune out of the box . . .
Other noteworthy news? Check out all my media sites for the authorized lyric video of "My Christmas Wish"! The song will also be available on all of my usual media outlets, and I'll soon have the "Holiday Heroes" CD available for purchase on this site, which included "My Christmas Wish"! It is a very cool collection of artists, each singing one Christmas tune; from Mavis Staples to Bobby Womack, Chuck Jackson, Dennis Edwards, Jerry Butler and more. I was extremely honored to be asked to participate in this project so many years ago.
Once again, stay tuned, stay in tune, hum a tune, be happy, be healthy, and follow your instincts . . . . . . you can't nickname the truth!
I'll drop the first single after the first of the year (goodbye 2020!) Folks, I'm both sorry and happy to say we've sold out of "I Hear Voices!" with no plans of producing more CDs (although the vinyl version is still available.) For the time being, the "Voices!" CD may be available at HLN shows, and we see some popping up on Ebay every so often. So thanks, it's been fun, and look for the a cappella version of "Voices" coming soon!
For close to four decades now Johnny Colla has been a fixture on the San Francisco Bay Area music scene and beyond. Probably best known as saxman/guitarist/vocalist/songwriter with Huey Lewis and The News, Johnny's professional career goes back to the early seventies when Van Morrison picked his band up for a couple tours. No more than a year later Johnny landed a seat playing with Sly and The Family Stone, and as he likes to recall, Sly "taught me everything not to do in the music business." Proof that if you look hard enough there's a life lesson in every experience.
There were other attempts at a career and success along the way, but throughout it all Johnny and Huey were conspiring to start something new back in Marin County. By the end of the seventies and several name changes later ("The Fools," "The Meteors," and "American Express" amongst others) the band settled on "The News." Over the next year or so the lads were feverishly writing, recording and performing whenever they could, for whoever would have them. By 1979 "Huey Lewis and The News" landed a record deal and they were off and running; the rest is a rich, intoxicating history, and a few chapters have yet to be written.
Besides the aforementioned job description, Johnny wears a few other hats with HLN (producing, arranging, directing, engineering, etc.) Between all that and other artist's outside projects, he never wore the solo hat as much as he'd wished. 2002 brought us "Lucky Devil" - Johnny's well-received first offering - but HLN business and family obligations kept him from a follow-up . . . until now. Something clicked with Johnny several years ago and the focus shifted; he reshuffled the deck and once again "The Lucky Devil" took a few chances. Life was no longer about what was or is, but "what could be." Come on in and take a peek at a remarkable talent, engaging tales and trails, and some pretty cool music!
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