Boo Ray (from the album Sea of Lights) - Nashville nightclubs, Georgia juke joints, and stages from the Gulf Coast to the shoreline of Los Angeles have been the backdrop for Boo Ray to hone the sound of his branded of Truckstop Rhythm and Blues. Boo Ray returns with a new album, Sea of Lights, on August 12, 2016, a follow-up to his 2010 release, Bad News Travels Fast. The success of the album still surprises Boo Ray, who says that ‘I am shocked that such a hustlers scavenger album is still getting airplay on XM radio’s Outlaw Country and other stations around the country’. Sea of Lights puts producer Noah Shain back into the studio with Boo Ray as the pair offer a beefy bottom to the tracks, providing a city street beat to the natural Country of the songs.
Boo Ray took some time on his travels to discuss the album and where the life road has taken him while on a radio tour to promote Sea of Lights. On a call from canyons of New Mexico he dialed up on the way into Taos to let us know that ‘we are on a radio tour that will take us from Los Angeles back to Nashville. After the three and a half weeks of radio stops we are going to hit it on tour for two months’. When asked about the sound of the songs, Boo Ray said ‘I always think that as the two-step travels further south it gets a little more relaxed. I am influenced by artists like Jerry Reed and Eddie Rabbit. There is a lot of Soul in my music put together with a swampier backbeat’. Originally from North Carolina, Boo Ray headed out ‘as soon as I could find my way off the damn mountain. I decided that I was either going to Asheville (North Carolina) or Athens (Georgia)’. Boo Ray currently spends equal time in Nashville and Athens with his girlfriend, who skates at Fun Galaxy Roller Rink on the local team, Classic City Rollergirls. Boo Ray admits ‘I never thought I would wind up being a roller derby nerd but that is what I am. We have places in both Tennessee and Georgia’. Boo Ray will be on the road with Sea of Lights through New Year 2016, and heads back into the studio in December to begin work for a new record.
Boo Ray leads with his own likes as he talks about what gives him a smile, opening Sea of Lights with “Redneck Rock'n'Roll” as heads onto the dance floor for a two-stepping hillbilly waltz. He grabs a red eye flight to Los Angeles on the title track as Sea of Lights orders “One More Round” through a thick hazy barroom sway, stomps the beat to the floor on “Keep the Hammer Down”, rustles up a honky tonk rhythm to pass love around to friends with “I Got the Jug”, and goes to church on a farmers holy trinity remedy in “A Melody, Some Guitars, and a Rhyme”. Scratchy guitars throw out wild seeds of notes for “Chicken” as a high hat taps out a message on the wire that “Bad News Travels Fast”. Boo Ray closes the door on Sea of Lights as he opens the door for some ‘honky tonking, juking, and jiving”, taking a seat at the bar to toast the cast of characters that leave their ‘politics and religion at the door’ in “Johnny’s Tavern”.