Brad Brooks, beloved in the Bay Area as one of its finest vocalists and songwriters, released Harmony of Passing Light in 2012, drew comparisons to Elvis Costello, Wilco, Brian Wilson, and Queen, and planned to head right back into the studio to record an immediate, even more ambitious follow-up.
Instead, he found himself fighting for his life.
Just as the songs for God Save The City (street date October 23) started to take shape, a routine trip to the dentist revealed a lump in Brooks’ throat, which turned out to be cancer; and the treatment, he discovered, might rob him of his voice altogether. But Brooks made a full recovery, and simultaneously mined the scariest moment in his life for the most honest and fiery record of his career.
Today’s single premiere “Strange Fruit Numb” is a fantastic track that does a great job capturing and balancing the ole school, gritty Blues and vocals with a much modern sensibilities.
About the song, Brooks comments In 2016 Philando Castile was pulled over in his car by Minneapolis police for a busted tail light and while attempting to pull out his wallet saying “Sir I have to tell you that I do have a firearm on me,” was murdered point blank in front of his family. He had a license to carry it and did all that he was asked to do………….the officer was acquitted………………..in 2020 an officer sat on George Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes & 46 seconds ending his life in front of the world and changing it forever! This song was also inspired by a conversation that I had with Cherrie Williams “The Singing Domestic Doll Lady” in 2016 whom I met in my neighborhood in Oakland talking about the murder of Philando Castile and the BLM movement. She told me about “Causal Music” a term that she used to describe her music and what it meant to her, and after such an inspiring conversation, I went home and wrote the lyrics to “Strange Fruit Numb” that morning. We recorded it shortly after and now it’s coming out first right now today from the forthcoming new record “God Save The City”. Please listen and TMFT’