Cold Roses will release their new album, Escape to Anywhere, on July 21. The Philadelphia band coalesced around singer/songwriter/guitarist Rob Clancy, who had been playing in other people’s bands but wanted to write and play his own music. He took the band’s name from a favorite Ryan Adams song and persevered through several lineup changes before solidifying the present lineup that includes drummer Robby Webb, sax player Tom Petraccarro, trumpeter Rick Rein, and keyboard player Dan Finn.
“I love ’60s R&B and soul, so I looked to that stuff and thought, what would happen if we bring in a horn section?” Clancy said. “We brought them into rehearsal, just to see how it would sound, and they just kind of stuck.”
The band’s debut album No Silence in the City garnered immediate airplay locally, and before long Cold Roses music could be heard on radio stations across the country. Meanwhile, the band was developing a strong local following and a reputation as a powerful live band. According to Clancy, their hometown had more than a little to do with their success.
“Philly has an underdog quality, and it also has such a rich R&B and jazz heritage,” Clancy said. “It’s a town with a lot of heart that doesn’t put up with bullshit, and it’s a working-class town with a strong work ethic. It also has some of the toughest crowds in the country to win over. We’ve played to such a wide variety of people and found a way to connect with each one of them.”
The lessons learned in the battle for the hearts, mind, and ears of the local Philly fans served Cold Roses well when the time came to record Escape to Anywhere. The album was recorded in Los Angeles, with producers David J. Holman and Roger Paglia behind the desk. It was the first time the expanded band, including the horn section, had been in a studio together, so it was unclear at the start how things would go. But recording the rhythm tracks live as a band, and using analog technology provided the organic sound that the band was looking for.
“It’s been a long process getting this record out, but I feel like it’s been worth it,” Clancy said. “I feel like this band now is a well-oiled machine that’s firing on all cylinders, so we’re looking to getting out there and seeing what it can do.”
The first single from Escape to Anywhere is “Staying Alive Ain’t Easy.” Popdose is proud to be the exclusive host of the song’s video. Clancy spoke to us about it.
“I always thought of ‘Staying Alive Ain’t Easy’ as being a deceptively simple song on the surface, with a deeper philosophical undertone, and a straight-forward delivery of its overall message,” Clancy said. “Our director, Luke Paglia, basically followed myself, my dog, and the band around our hometown of Philadelphia for a day, letting the camera roll the whole time.”
“It shows a day in the life of the band when we’re not on the road, just hanging out at home, in bars, at our rehearsal space, mixed in with live footage, studio candids, and shots from our cross-country drive last summer. We wanted to share with our fans a look into where we come from because it’s a major part of what has shaped us a band as well as individual musicians and it certainly had an influence on the writing of the song itself.”
Cold Roses band photo by Gene Smirnov
Escape to Anywhere will be released by Recorded Records on July 21. It will be available for streaming and download on all major platforms including Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, and Amazon. In the meantime, you can see Cold Roses at the Firefly Music Festival in Dover, DE on June 16, and at MilkBoy in Philadelphia on June 24.