With her eagerly anticipated new CD, “The Road to Bliss,” Cathy Richardson takes an extraordinary musical journey and brings everyone along for the exhilarating ride. Already hometown heroes in their native Chicago (voted Best Band in polls by the Chicago Tribune and Fox News) this intriguing singer-songwriter and her finely tuned bandmates are fixin’ to drive right into your rock and roll heart.
In this self-produced recording, Richardson’s powerful, versatile voice glides effortlessly from gorgeous to gritty and back again. She often soars into the stratosphere with those remarkable pipes, but her songs remain down-to-earth and always passionate. No one who listens to “The Road to Bliss” will be surprised that Richardson portrayed Janis Joplin in the Off-Broadway hit “Love, Janis” and occasionally sits in with Big Brother and the Holding Company, rendering those heart-wrenching songs to spine-tingling effect.
The new CD’s theme is movin’ on—always to something better. “You never know where the road of life is going to take you,” Richardson says. “It’s full of twists and turns and surprises, but you trust that if you follow your heart, and follow the signs, it’s all gonna unfold and reveal itself and lead you right where you need to be.” In a characteristically daring move, she’s wrapped her musical concept in a package the likes of which have not been seen since the Rolling Stones’ notorious Some Girls.

The CD’s chipboard box (no “crappy jewel case,” she says) opens into six panels of “road” photos, taken by Richardson, of the kind of grand scenery—mountains, seas, rainbows—that evokes yearning and big dreams. When you fully unfold the box, you’re in the driver’s seat of a vintage car, complete with dashboard, rearview mirror, and “steering wheel,” the CD itself. Open the glove compartment—yes, it opens—and you’ll find inside a detailed map of Road to Bliss’s psychic landscape, the CD booklet

Why the elaborate artwork? “It’s a return to album art,” says Richardson. “I wanted to create a package that draws the listener into the music and makes them part of it, in a way that stimulates all six senses. You know, like the good old days.”
In this case, it’s art that reflects the caliber of the music. The roots-, country- and blues-tinged songs are equally ambitious. “Miracle” is an honest, upbeat look at envy; “Blindsided by Love,” a duet with Emily Saliers of Indigo Girls, is a shimmering, hopeful ballad; “I’ve Changed” is one of those raucous, so-true anthems, reminiscent of the Spencer Davis Group’s “Gimme Some Lovin’,” that seem to have existed from the beginning of time (or rock ’n’ roll, anyway). “This Town,” with an infectious slide guitar hook and potent lyrics like, “I’m wavin’ one finger good-bye,” is a knock out punch directed at local music critics who pick on local bands. “This Town” has already caught the ears of Chicago’s WXRT Radio, who are giving it multiple spins. These songs, along with eight others, convey emotions that are all stops on the scary, bumpy, thrilling and beautiful highway of life.
Track titles appear as “cities” on the booklet map. They’re mostly along the main route, 444—a magical number, Richardson believes—and surrounded by such towns and features as Saliersbury (in honor of Emily Saliers), the Kristen Hall of Fame (Kristen Hall co-wrote four tunes), the Janis River (no explanation necessary), and Dolan Bog (artist Bill Dolan designed the package with Richardson). Rabid fans can have a blast figuring out the map, though band members are pretty easy: Breckenfeld Ridge for drummer Ed Breckenfeld, Hoekstra Primate Sanctuary for guitarist Joel Hoekstra, and, of course, the mountain range called Cathy Rocks.
Does she ever. Lucky for us we get to listen. This is car music like you’ve never experienced before, and a trip in more ways than one. Take the ride.

Cash Rich
UPC: 6-89076-08132-0

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"The Road To Bliss"

1. miracle
2. this town
3. alyson
4. take to the night
5. blindsided by love
6. picture this

7. i can't forgive you
8. i've changed
9. has been
10. james by the window
11. over your shoulder
12. wash it down


Grammy Nomination - Best Recording Package!



CRB website



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