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Jim Peterik & World Stage: Roots & Shoots Vol. 1
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Peterik/World Stage: Roots & Shoots Vol. 1

AOR Melodic Rock
5.0/5.0

Veteran songwriter, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and Grammy winner, Jim Peterik returned to his World Stage almost five years ago. That was after a nearly two decade hiatus. With 2019's Winds Of Change, Peterik wrote song for a host of guest vocalists. For his latest World Stage album, Roots & Shoots Vol. 1 does the same, yet with an important twist. He invites some veteran classic rock performers (roots) to join up and coming talent (shoots).

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Jim Peterik

The former includes friends Kevin Cronin, Mark Farner, Kelly Keagy, and Don Barnes from 38 Special. The shoots, a new generation of singers, song writers, and musicians include, among many, Ashton Brooke Gill, Paul Childers, and Mark Mackay, some coming from the country music genre. Then there's vocalist Lisa McClowry who doubles as Cher for a tribute act. Find the complete track list and credits here.


Speaking to the songs, one thing can be said. Jim Peterik is an AOR melodic rock magician. Has he ever written a "bad" song? I doubt it. He might beg to differ, having tossed out a few compositions that have never seen the light of day. But you can't deny his love for and masterful interpretation of the genre. Song melody. Vocal harmony. Guitar rhythm and ripping leads. Catchy choruses. And classic rock rhythm and groove. Peterik is like the Julia Child of AOR melodic rock songwriting in the recording studio. I dare you to find something, one song, you don't like on this album. I could not, but I had my favorites: Forever's The Last Place, I Found Me, Last Dream Home, and Dangerous Combination with REO's Kevin Cronin. And Ashton Brooke Gill's vocal performance is simply brilliant on As I Am.

All things considered, Jim Peterik with his World Stage project, Roots & Shoots, has done a very fine and entertaining thing for the AOR genre: keeping the genre undeniable and vibrant by infusing it with a new generation of significant talent. Easily recommended.


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The Take Away

Jim Peterik with his World Stage project, Roots & Shoots, has done a very fine and entertaining thing for the AOR genre: keeping the genre undeniable and vibrant by infusing it with a new generation of significant talent. Easily recommended.

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