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“I Smoke Cigars and I Play the Blues" Debut Single from Blues and Classic Rock Band Cryin' Out Loud

Pilot Light Records has released the debut single from Cryin' Out Loud, “I Smoke Cigars and I Play the Blues," produced by Grammy-winning guitarist Paul Nelson.

"I Smoke Cigars and I Play the Blues" Album Art depicting a smoking cigar on a tumble of whiskey over ice
"I Smoke Cigars and I Play the Blues" on Pilot Light Records

NORWALK, CONNECTICUT, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, January 22, 2024 / -- Brandon Stallard is a man that appreciates the finest quality in three things: cigars, whiskey and the blues. To understand that is to understand the man who is the singer-songwriter, guitarist, and voice behind Cryin’ Out Loud, a Maine-based blues and classic rock band.

You see, Stallard doesn’t merely smoke a cigar. He takes his sweet time; he meticulously chooses each cigar, which he cuts precisely, and burns slowly. So much like the way he appreciates every moment of a fine musical performance.

When he relocated to the Bar Harbor, Maine-area from his native-Fredericksburg, Virginia, Stallard had decided to radically simplify his life, making music his number one professional priority. So far, it’s been five years, and he is not looking back.

His band Cryin’ Out Loud will release its first full album, “Play Loud & Smoke Often,” in March 2024, produced by Grammy Award-winning guitarist Paul Nelson (Johnny Winter).

The album was recorded at Husson Communications (Husson University) in Bangor, Maine, by recording engineer Joshua Small. The recording features band leader Stallard on guitar and vocals, Ben Chute on guitar, Jim Fratini on bass, and drums performed by Jeff Glidden, Scott Stallard, and Tommy Rush. Nelson is guest featured on guitar and mandolin. The band is presently preparing a “behind the scenes” video with footage captured during the recording of the album. By all accounts, it was a special experience for everyone involved.

The result of their work is both raw and authentic, and captures the energy of a live performance. The players shine on a diverse collection of smartly-written songs by Stallard, that range from straight blues and blues-rock, to earthy folk-blues, and even some high power, up tempo Chicago blues.

The lead off-single from the album “I Smoke Cigars and I Play the Blues,” has been released by Norwalk, CT-based label Pilot Light Records, to all major streaming outlets both internationally as well as the United States.

‘Play loud and Smoke often is my mantra.’ It’s a saying that I have lived by for years. So, of course, that had to be the name of the album. The hook of the song comes from when I first moved to Maine and people would eventually ask me ‘What do you do?’ I’d say ‘I smoke cigars and I play the blues!’ ” Stallard said.

Marc Alan, Managing Director of Pilot Light Records, stated: “I was really grateful for the opportunity to work with Brandon and his band, for which I have to thank Paul Nelson for the introduction. To me Pilot Light Records was basically designed for bands like Cryin’ Out Loud, who are as passionate, and hardworking, as they are talented. When it comes to what we look for in a band, Cryin’ Out Loud has everything it takes. They just made a great album with Paul, and we’re excited to be a part of sharing it with the world.”

“I Smoke Cigars and I Play the Blues” is now streaming on Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon, and all major music outlets.

Check Cryin' Out Loud for tour schedule and special appearances.

Visit Pilot Light Records on the web.

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