Project is inspired by Jeff Beck, Led Zeppelin, John Mayall, Eric Clapton, and Cream
The wait is over, Joe Bonamassa’s new solo studio album Royal Tea — inspired by his British heroes Jeff Beck, John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers, Eric Clapton, Led Zeppelin and Cream — will be released October 23rd via J&R Adventures. The project was recorded at the legendary Abbey Road Studios. Bonamassa also surprised his fans this past Friday with his latest single, “Why Does It Take So Long To Say Goodbye.”
Bonamassa is known for taking risks and venturing into uncharted territory throughout his wide-ranging career but now he has found a new way to surprise his fans and music lovers. Royal Tea brings Bonamassa full-circle. “This whole adventure,” admits Bonamassa, “was a bucket-list thing for me.” This album reconnects the 43-year-old with the guitar-slinging kid from upstate New York, who stumbled across the best of British blues music in his dad’s vinyl collection – whose influences have shaped him to be the player he is today. “I would have been about twelve years old, and it was the sound I heard in my head. Like, ‘OK, I’m in. That’s what I want to be’.”
These ten original tracks were co-written by Bonamassa and a cast of homegrown notables including former Whitesnake guitarist Bernie Marsden, ex-Cream lyricist Pete Brown and national-treasure piano man Jools Holland. “Writing this record in London has done its job,” reflects Bonamassa. “It really does sound inherently British. Bernie and I, we finish each other’s sentences. We’re cut from the same cloth.” Bonamassa’s long-standing producer Kevin Shirley and regular touring band flew in for the recording sessions, which included Anton Fig (drums), Michael Rhodes (bass) and Reese Wynans (keys).
Alongside the announcement of the Royal Tea album, Bonamassa has also revealed that he will perform a special livestream concert from the legendary Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee on September 20th. This concert will feature the songs from his new album before the official release. Bonamassa has never performed a full, unreleased album for audiences like this before, giving fans from around the world the opportunity to come together for an unforgettable night of blues rock music. Along with Royal Tea, he’ll perform classic remixes from his 20th anniversary debut album A New Day Now. The evening will continue with a one hour “After Party” featuring several live performances from an array of some of the hottest rising stars in blues rock music.
The livestream tickets and packages for “Joe Bonamassa Live in Concert Worldwide” presented by Keeping The Blues Alive are available via his website. A variety of pricing levels are available for fans worldwide to be a part of this special “audience.” Tickets to the livestream event starts at $20. Fans may also purchase a $35 All-Access Pass which includes access to the livestream event on September 20th, the Royal Tea digital album available on October 23rd, and a one year all pass for Bonamassa’s on-demand service which includes 17+ concert releases from Joe Bonamassa, Black Country Communion, and Rock Candy Funk Party – available at any time on most devices. A Deluxe Package for $65 includes a commemorative t-shirt.
As part of this unique concert event, fans also have the option to purchase a Commemorative VIP ticket giving them an experience they will never forget. VIP ticket holders will have their photo printed out and placed in a seat at the legendary Ryman Auditorium as part of Bonamassa’s audience for that special night. VIPs will also get a picture of Bonamassa with his “audience” which will be sent to them via email to keep. The VIP ticket holder’s name will also be included in the credits at the end of the livestream event, as well as being included in the upcoming DVD credits for this performance! They also get the t-shirt, one year subscription and digital album.
This one-of-a-kind concert is presented by Bonamassa’s non-profit, Keeping the Blues Alive Foundation (KTBA). Each ticket purchase will include a $1 donation to Joe’s Fueling Musicians Program, which to date has raised over $295,000 and has supported more than 163 musicians in need due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While much of the applause Bonamassa receives should be credited to his sheer talent, some part of his success needs to be attributed to Bonamassa and his business partner for having the foresight and ability to become some of music’s savviest entrepreneurs. Bonamassa, now 43, and his partner Roy Weisman have together devised a 360-degree independent business model that has survived and thrived during one of the music industry’s most uncertain eras, particularly considering the challenges created by the current pandemic.
Bonamassa’s Royal Tea and A New Day Now follow his instrumental side project called The Sleep Eazys, who released their stunning debut album, Easy To Buy, Hard To Sell, earlier this year. The album, which the Associated Press touted as making “instrumental dreams,” was produced by Bonamassa and features some of his frequent collaborators, along with his all-star touring band. The Sleep Eazys project is Bonamassa’s second time in the studio as a producer, after Reese Wynans’ long-awaited debut solo album Sweet Release.
In addition, Bonamassa continues to crank out weekly programming for SiriusXM’s Bluesville channel for his radio show Different Shades Of Blue. More recently, he kicked off a new at-home weekly interview series Live From Nerdville on his Facebook and YouTube page, featuring episodes with Neal Schon of Journey, John Oates of Hall & Oates, Glenn Hughes, Paul Stanley of Kiss, Warren Haynes, Keb’ Mo’, Walter Trout and esteemed singer-songwriter Dion. On June 5th, Bonamassa released music icon Dion’s critically-acclaimed new album Blues With Friends on he and his manager Roy Weisman’s new record label Keeping The Blues Alive Records and Dion’s first single “Blues Comin’ On” also features Bonamassa on slide guitar.
1. When One Door Opens
2. Royal Tea
3. Why Does It Take So Long To Say Goodbye
4. Lookout Man!
5. High Class Girl
6. A Conversation With Alice
7. I Didn’t Think She Would Do it
8. Beyond The Silence
9. Lonely Boy
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.