Commodore Callahan debut album features Tammy Hall on piano and vocals, Don Kane on bass, vocals and clarinet, Lauren Speeth on vocals and backup instruments, and Josh Workman on guitar and vocals. Bay Area mainstays and friends for decades, their bond informs the cohesiveness of their instruments and dynamics of their compositions. Their passion for hope and change is palpable to the ear.
Described as ‘new-thought, upbeat spiritual music with a timeless retro/gospel/R&B feel,’ each track was composed with the ideals of keeping hope through challenge, finding compassion and synchronicity in difference, and seeking out love, peace, and spirituality. Tammy Hall’s piano flows with bright notes and the multiple voices of Commodore Callahan and guest singers are earthy, soulful, and inspiring. In chorus with the vision of the group’s members, several of the album’s 11 tracks are dedicated to NGOs that promote social change through the betterment of communities in San Francisco and Los Angeles and beyond. Some of the songs are connected to larger projects that work to change the world for the better:
• “Garden in my Soul” is dedicated to Boys Hope Girls Hope as well as to the soulful civil rights performer Odetta.
• “Voices Home,” is dedicated to The Carter Center, www.cartercenter.org
. The work speaks to the concept that beneath skin-deep differences and beyond the language barriers, all of us share common hopes, dreams and yearnings.
• “Resurrection” is dedicated to Peter Young (and his Housing Industries and Treatement) whose innovative approach has proven for 50 years that it’s never too late for resurrection.
• “In Canada (No One's Poor)” was inspired by a story that takes place in Calgary, Canada—a sparkly gem of a city with a homelessness problem. The story is of a young woman who found a Christmas dinner at her front door, but her boyfriend’s mother didn’t believe such a story could be true in Canada, because the sort of poverty that would inspire such charity is only found in the USA.
• "Wave Rider" was inspired by Jon Kabat-Zinn, whose MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) is effective with pain, prisons and inner cities, and is dedicated to Stanford’s Project Compassion.