Elliot Ranney is putting out a new CD titled Bellevue Shuffle, and will perform to celebrate the release at 2:00 p.m. this Sunday, October 20 at Kirkwood Station Brewing Company.
The album (pictured) includes 15 original songs, all written and arranged by Ranney, with help from his wife Ellen Ranney on one track, "Without You."
It features the leader on vocals and finger-style classical guitar, backed by Stephen Ranney on upright bass and Joe Winters, plus an extensive lineup of guest musicians including guitarists Jon Ferber, Dave Black and Tom Byrne, saxophonist Paul DeMarinis, trumpeter Randy Holmes, and numerous others. Many of the musicians from the recording will be joining Ranney for Sunday's gig at Kirkwood Station, he said.
Ranney describes the sound of Bellevue Shuffle as "an acoustic jazz hybrid with undertones of Latin and Swing." There are tracks paying tribute to Antonio Carlos Jobim and Tom Waits, and in further describing the album, the composer also name-checks Miles, Trane, Steely Dan and Stéphane Grappelli.
More than three years in the making, Bellevue Shuffle was recorded, mixed and mastered by Billy Engel at his EAR Studios in Wildwood. "The rhythm tracks only three months," said Ranney via email. "Getting the session players took a little longer. Ultimately, I'm glad I took my time to get it as right as I could."
Ranney, who grew up in Kirkwood, performs around town at spots including Venice Cafe, Picasso's, Van Gogh's, and various Missouri and Illinois wineries. His previous CD, An Aging Sailor's Dream, came out in 2001 on the local Wildstone Media label, and in 2012 was re-released overseas by the Japanese label Rip Curl Records.
Bellevue Shuffle will be issued on Ranney's own label, Rope Yarn Records, with CDs available for purchase at live gigs, and both CDs and digital downloads available via CD Baby. Admission to Sunday's performanceis $5 at the door, and copies of the CD will be on sale for $15 each.