Michael Sherwood + Christian Nesmith, “Sally’s Ass” from Groovy Lemon Pie (2015)

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Shenanigans are a-foot!

I interviewed writer/keyboardist Michael Sherwood a few months ago, just after the release of Toto XIV. (Sherwood co-wrote the excellent tracks “Chinatown,” “All the Tears That Shine” and the bonus song “Bend.”) He’s knee deep in the upcoming solo debut for Steve Porcaro, too. During our chat, we also discussed Lodgic, the band he formed with his brother (and current Yes bassist) Billy Sherwood, keyboardist Guy Allison, guitarist Jimmy Haun and drummer Gary Starnes.

In short, I thought I was a pretty thorough interviewer, but somehow I missed the project Michael Sherwood had with composer/guitarist Christian Nesmith.

Groovy Lemon Pie (available via bandcamp) is a pop music treat from start to finish. Michael Sherwood’s programming and keyboards fit perfectly with Nesmith’s west-coast guitar sounds and drum programs. They create a perfect, sunny southern California sound. Christian Nesmith, like Sherwood, has an impressive musical pedigree yet never rest of his laurels. Groovy Lemon Pie is bright, upbeat and funny — yet shows serious writing, playing and vocal chops.

My favorite song, at least my favorite this week, is the song “Sally’s Ass.” It was an almost XTC feel, yet with a jangly guitar and a straight-forward rock back beat brings something special. The vocal blend of Christian Nesmith and Michael Sherwood is tight and effective. The keyboard interlude and 12 string guitar add new dimension to the well-developed, risqué and slightly dark lyrics.

Perhaps the song isn’t as radio friendly as “Supervision” or “Two Worlds,” with it acoustic guitar opening and spry vocals, but it’s a hell of a piece of pop music. “Sally’s Ass” will have you wondering what other gems Michael Sherwood and Christian Nesmith have been keeping from the music-buying public.

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier is a bass-playing lawyer living in Atlanta. His first Steely Dan exposure was with an eight-track cassette of 'Pretzel Logic.' He can be reached at slangofages@icloud.com; follow him on Twitter: @slangofages. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Preston Frazier
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