Ryan Montbleau Breaks The Mold On New LP 'For Higher,' Out May 15


Ryan Montbleau broke with tradition on his new album, ‘For Higher’ (5/15), leaving behind the comfort of his touring band for a whirlwind series of sessions in New Orleans with some of the city’s best musicians. Producer Ben Ellman of Galactic assembled an all-star cast–including keyboard/B-3 player Ivan Neville, guitar master Anders Osborne, drummer Simon Lott, and Meters bassist George Porter, Jr.–to push Montbleau’s soulful and soaring voice into uncharted territory. 

While a few of the album’s 10 tracks were already part of the Ryan Montbleau Band’s ever-growing live repertoire, the majority, including four handpicked cover tunes — stone soul nuggets from Bill Withers, Curtis Mayfield, forgotten supergroup Rhinoceros, and the late Muscle Shoals guitarist Eddie Hinton — came together spontaneously with little prepwork. “I have a band that I’ve been touring with for years, and usually by the time we head into the studio the songs are pretty well mapped out,” says Montbleau. “This is a totally different record than I’ve ever made.”

NPR recently highlighted Montbleau’s grassroots success “earning fans the old fashioned way” with 200 shows-per-year and performances at major festivals like Bonnaroo, Gathering of the Vibes, and Life is Good. He also contributed songs to Trombone Shorty’s Grammy-nominated breakout album, ‘Backatown,’ and its follow up, ‘For True,’ and has co-written tracks with Soulive’s Eric Krasno.

‘For Higher’ Tracklist
1. Yeah Man
2. Heartbreak Road
3. Away We Go
4. Head Above Water
5. Here But I’m Gone
6. Burning and Hiding
7. Sweet, Nice ‘N’ High
8. Just Perfect
9. Dead Set
10. Full Grown Man

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