Blues Bytes


February 2011

an associate

Trampled Under Foot
Wrong Side of the Blues
Vizztone Records

Trampled Under Foot

Trampled Under Foot (TUF) has really been at the forefront of the next generation of Blues stars since winning the International Blues Challenge in 2008. They’ve traveled the world, winning over one fan at a time and in the process they’ve built an extensive following. I’ve been thinking for a while now that they were long overdue for a new studio album and I’m happy to say that Wrong Side of the Blues is about to hit the streets. Featuring mainly TUF originals plus a couple of tunes written by their father, Bob Schnebelen, Wrong Side of the Blues definitively shows that TUF is on the right side of the genre. Hold on for the ride.

We start out with Danielle on vocals, singing “Get It Straight.” Danielle’s in a relationship she wants to last but they’re both treating each other badly and it could easily fall apart. “Baby, baby, baby…why do we treat each other mean…We gotta do something so we don’t lose the fight…I wanna be with you for the rest of my days…but we have got to change some of our ways…and get it straight!” Hopefully they’ll get it figured out and stay together. Our next cut, “Bad Woman Blues,” finds Nick dealing with relationship issues of his own. “One thing that I can’t understand…is how a woman cheat on a good man…keep him up all night…crying on the phone…push me away and then I feel alone…” This one may work out, it might not, but Nick’s convinced of one thing, “You can get what you want with a little love!”

The title cut, “Wrong Side of the Blues,” finds Danielle lamenting about a relationship that she knows is just not going to work. “We’ve got so much to lose, our love it ain’t true. Baby you and me ain’t meant to be…me and you…we got to choose…not to end up on the wrong side of the blues!”

Nick’s back in the lead with Kim Wilson lending his harp to the cause. “I was waitin' on the line for you…knew your lies were too good to be true…knock me down and broke my heart…” “She’s Long, She’s Tall, She’s Gone.” Another relationship that just didn’t have a chance to make it. “Heart on the Line” finds Danielle reflecting on a relationship that’s ended and all it meant to her. “See the empty wall where our pictures used to hang…but now…they’re just memories…in my head of yesterday. Looking back I wonder…how’d we ever get to be this way? They both lost sight of what was important in their relationship and drifted apart for what appears to be less than a good reason. And the sad thing is sometimes that happens, despite having the best of intentions. You just have to move on.

Kris’ steady beat on the bass drum, along with Danielle’s bass line, accentuate the introduction to “Heart on the Line.” In this time…in this place…with these tears on my face…can’t bring myself to move on…I’ve been hurting so long…I feel like it’s wrong to stay…I feel I don’t belong…I put my heart on the line!” Up next is “The Fool," and here Nick is feeling some more of the pain that Danielle’s been talking about. “I have always….been the fool…that falls for you…that falls for love!” Despite the abuse he’s taking, Nick still wants to hang in there. “I don’t need no one to tell me I’m gonna stake my claim…I’m going to take you down…it’s a crying shame…I have always been the fool...that falls for love”.

Probably my favorite song on this disc is our next cut, “Have a Real Good Time,” in part because it really chronicles the journey that TUF’s been on. “Drivin’ up the mountains…cruising the seas…flying through Norwegian fog…there’s something going on!” I’ve seen TUF in Winter Park, not made the cruise yet and will be in Notodden this year while they’ve been blessed to do all of it. Their win at the IBC has launched them on a journey that’s far from ending. And they’re deserving of all the success that comes their way. After all, “there’s something goin on” and you’ll have to see it for yourself.

“Just Tell Yourself,” a song written by Danielle, finds her admonishing a suitor that she’s not the one for him. “I tell you now…I ain’t your perfect girl…you and me won’t be in a perfect world…now it’s time for you to see another way…just tell yourself…there’s nothing left…for us to say." Nick’s guitar solo accentuates Danielle’s decision and it is time for this poor soul to move on. Can’t fault his taste…it just wasn’t meant to be. Our next cut is “Evil Train,” a song written by their father, Bob. Nick takes over the lead vocals and lets us know: “There’s darkness and evil…riding on this train with me…and ever since I met you baby…I’ve been on this train of misery!” “There’s nothing good about this train…as it rolls…things get worse…the strangest thing about this train…is that we can get off…we can get off at any time.”

“It Would Be Nice” finds Danielle lamenting the loss of a good love…and not really knowing why. “You know…he used to love me…used to hug me…all night long…you know he used to love me….used to hug me all night long….but now he don’t want to me….I might as well be dead and gone.”

Wrong Side of the Blues ends on an up note with “The Better Life,” a song with Nick on lead vocals. “The better life that I have found since I fell in love with you…makes a big difference…I didn’t know that I needed the change.” Nick’s found a woman that truly loves him and her good love has really touched him and changed his life for the better. We all should be as fortunate. Wrong Side of the Blues really shines under the production efforts of Tony Braunagel and having artists such as Kim Wilson, Mike Finnegan, Johnny Lee Schell and their mother, Lisa Swedlund, backing them up doesn’t hurt either.

This is an outstanding disc from Trampled Under Foot and definitely a treat this early in the year. You can visit their store at to pick up this disc and other great merchandise from the band. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this disc heavily considered for some Blues Music Awards in next year’s voting. Well done, Nick, Kris and Danielle!

--- Kyle Deibler


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