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Bill Payne joins Christopher Hawley Rollers on new CD

The third album of California rock n’ roll from the Christopher Hawley Rollers is now available on iTunes.

Play a sample of this wonderful CD HERE.

Christopher Hawley wrote the music and lyrics, as well as plays electric, acoustic and slide guitar on the album. These eleven original songs feature Bill Payne from Little Feat on keys and John Steward from Fishbone on drums and is the first all-studio album by the Christopher Hawley Rollers. The band has managed to put out two records in the last two years while playing over 200 shows annually.



Christopher Hawley’s haunts are ski towns, artist communities, beach bars, and college towns. With his much-anticipated third album Comes Around Again (available on iTunes), the open-hearted troubadour offers uplifting vibes and conscious music to an even wider audience. Constant touring in the Western US over the past ten years has established a grass-roots fan base, planting seeds for success.

This Venice, CA-based avid skier, surfer and yogi has mastered the art of raising spirits through music with a combination of inspiring lyrics, positive attitude, and danceable grooves. Rooted in the Colorado jamband scene of the '90s and evolved from the legacy of great singer-songwriters like John Fogerty, Bob Marley, Johnny Cash, and Bob Weir, Christopher has created a unique blend of music. His seasoned guitar style and sense of melody reflect diverse multicultural influences. Lead guitar and slide breaks à la Duane Allman, Ali Farka Touré, Eric Clapton, and Jerry Garcia enliven the well-crafted arrangements.

A particularly large influence was Lowell George of Little Feat. Not only does Christopher emulate Lowell’s extremely expressive guitar playing, but also his vocal style and multi-layered song-writing to creative a repertoire of music blending multiple genres. In the vain of Little Feat tunes, Christopher’s songs blur the boundaries between island music, gospel, southern blues, New Orleans music, funk and country rock.

Over the years, Christopher’s songs have attracted some of the most proficient players to be a part of the collective known as the Rollers. The musicians’ shared sense of adventure genuinely comes across in the music. The latest Roller to record with the band is Bill Payne from Little Feat.

The new album Comes Around Again contains communal themes of interconnectivity, attachment to Mother Nature, and gratitude all rolled up in roots rock & roll. They are classic American tunes, sung in a strong voice described as “inviting” and “amiable.”

The eleven-song disc of newly recorded studio tracks are bursting with juicy guitar from Christopher Hawley. Bill Payne’s distinctive performances permeate the album, with his soulful piano and organ sounds. John Steward, a regular Roller when not drumming with the band Fishbone, fully embraces the multiple song styles.

The album kicks off with War No More, a rhythmic anti-war groove with afrobeat influences and a biting melodic guitar solo. Lizziebot’s Arm Bands bearing positive messages inspired this song. Lay It On Me, a laid-back acoustic funk tune about communication, culminates in a tight conversational interplay between John’s drums and Christopher’s electric guitar.

Bill Payne’s rolling barroom piano sets the stage for Bank Robbing Man, which portrays a nonviolent tale from the Old West about robbing banks and trains from an outlaw’s perspective.

In the swampy danceable gospel groove When Jesus Fed the Multitude, the theme of gratitude is enhanced by Bill Payne’s uplifting mastery of the Hammond B3 organ.

The suggestion during a yoga class from instructor Bryan Kest to Meander through the poses resulted in a mellow island/reggae contemplation on “me and her.”

The evocative acoustic piece Home is punctuated by shimmering pedal steel and big drum fills, and Bill Payne’s ethereal piano. Christopher sings from the perspective of a eco-conscious surfer with the awareness that we are all interdependent on the ocean no matter where on earth we live.

The guitar part in the chorus of The More of You I Know was inspired by kompa style taught to young Christopher by Haitian musicians. The lyrics, which came to him in a dream at his grandparents’ house in Haiti, speak of traveling to distant places and embracing the unknown.
Once again, Bill Payne’s piano solo transports the song to another dimension.

The highlight for Little Feat fans will be track 10, Johnny Appleseed -- an instant classic tune. Johnny Appleseed is an American parable told in the vein of Lowell George epic story songs. The rhythm is reminiscent of New Orleans grooves purveyed by Little Feat music and punctuated by Bill Payne’s polyrhythmic piano playing.

Comes Around Again offers good-time music to enjoy life by – filled to the brim with musings of appreciation and traveling tales from a man who sings them with all his heart.

“golden-throated Venetian”
Venice Argonaut cover story
“new folk gold”
Santa Monica College Corsair Newspaper
“You have some truly great music going on”
Bill Payne, Little Feat

• Constant international touring since 1999, including residencies at LA Westside venues for past 3-5 years
• Multiple placements on TV and film, including Fuel TV and The Good Guys

Comes Around Again now available on iTunes


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