JD and the Straight Shot (from the album Ballyhoo!) - JD and the Straight Shot pare down their sound, firing off Ballyhoo!, their most recent release, against a instrumentation that stages the album with rustic trappings. JD (Jim Dolan) leads the vocals, with harmonies coming from his four-piece, acoustic Straight Shot backing on guitar from Aidan Dolan and Marc Copley (Rosanne Cash, McCrary Sisters), Byron House (Emmylou Harris, Robert Plant) on bass and the violin of Erin Shaver (Rod Stewart, Martina McBride).The rhythms on Ballyhoo! rumble on the title track, finger snap away some sin on “Better Find a Church”, sway for a slow Country spin for “Hard to Find”, and lightly dapple notes like fractured, late afternoon sunlight in “Don’t Waste My Time”.
Jim Dolan is passionate about his role as lead for JD and the Straight Shot. He believes in the music, though he is keeping his day gig as Cablevision Systems CEO and Executive Chairman of Madison Square Garden, where he also oversees the New York Knicks, Rangers and Liberty. He is an integral part of the life around him in his music. Jim felt ‘I needed something in my life where I felt like I was actually creating. Most of what I do as an executive is orchestrate. I don’t actually set up cable and I don’t really shoot hoops. Music is something I’ve played since I was a kid. Music, for me, is a direct connection between me and the audience’. Ballyhoo! throws political challenges (“Governor’s Song”) and weighs in on contemporary issues (“Under That Hood”). JD and the Straight Shot trail a wiggly riff and shaky percussion to find the salvation that opens the album with “Empty” as Ballyhoo! picks up its step for a mountain reel to “Glide”, tells the tale of the Man in Black on flickering notes laid down as a welcome for “Here He Comes” and busks a street corner symphony for the Spirit classic track, “Nature’s Way”.