Capturing The Heart Of The Shoals Part 1: Roy Sullivan’s debut album

Everyone can agree that the heart of the Shoals area shares a part of it’s beating self with it’s deeply rooted music history. From The Swampers (Muscle Shoals Rythm Section) playing for Aretha Franklin, to “The Father of The Blues”, WC Handy and the more recently produced Muscle Shoals Documentary, we of the Quad Cities area can be proud of our rich music history. 

We all love and adore The Swampers, The Midnighters and The Pine Hill Haints but let’s also shine a spotlight on our young and upcoming artists in the area and celebrate the beautiful fact that our city’s love of music is still very much alive and blasting through young people’s speakers and venues. 
In this series, we will introduce music artists in the area and get to know a part of the still-beating heart of Muscle Shoals.
I remember being at The End music venue in Downtown Florence and hearing West Means Home (now Roy Sullivan) for the first time. Their music electrified my soul and sent the entire room into a buzz with their sounds as they played. These guys just dropped their debut album as Roy Sullivan called On The Verge of Collapse.  
This band has been together and touring since 2015 and is still going strong! Austin Brent is the lead vocalist and he can belt out the catchiest lyrics on this side of the river. While Zack plays the guitar that could be a catalyst to bring Frankenstein’s monster to life.  Antonio’s bass rhythm and Jake’s heavy riffs keep you wanting more. Jared knows just when to really give a punchy beat on the drums and when to play lively and accent his bandmates to create the perfect storm to make a crowd jump. 
 They have turned the heads of Chris Carrabba of Dashboard Confessional and Joel Madden from Good Charlotte! This October they went on tour with the band Meadows in support of Idle Threat. 
This group of young men have worked hard for years to give us great music and are now out there keeping the heart of the Shoals alive by showing others that our small town has the soul of a giant. 
I’m sitting here listening to On The Verge of Collapse. The first song that plays when I hit ‘shuffle’ is ‘Dude, Where’s My ’72 Deluxe Partscaster?’ and I can already feel myself falling into it. The opening chords have you swaying in a nostalgic trance while the drums keep it just the right amount of upbeat kick. The lyrics start and I’m thinking, “This one is going to be my favorite.” 
But I still have the entire album that I haven’t listened to and I know I will enjoy each and every one of the songs on there. https://open.spotify.com/artist/45WjJP5Jkv2kTFFjF3amSh

Dee Jackson & Josey Maxwell Staff Writers

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