Gleewood is a New Mexican husband/wife fronted Americana band that grooves through blues, folk, and rock ‘n’ roll. Jhett and Callie Sioux’s lyrics lend a story to folk and roots music enthusiasts and bring an energy that swells into dynamic jams pumped from the heart of the psychedelic 60s. Gleewood is steeped in a vintage vibe and is poured out over an icy fresh dose of the 21st century. Jhett’s bass baritone grit welds uniquely with Callie’s high, clear, soprano vocals to create a sound that Why We Listen, LA described as “Coffee and cream with a shot of whiskey.” Gleewood’s latest album, “Sweet, Sweet Time” released in December of 2016 was nominated for “Best Rock Album of the Year” by New Mexico Music Awards 2017. It was after Jhett Schiavone’s laid-back, acoustic songwriting brought him back from Hawaii to his home in New Mexico, when he met, married, and began writing with the western desert flower, Callie Sioux. Gleewood was originally conceived as an acoustic duo, humbly sharing folk songs from town to town throughout the southwest while living out of their Honda Element. Callie and Jhett later bloomed into a trio adding drums to the mix and can be seen on stage with several of New Mexico’s finest percussionists as well as variety of instruments including an Irish bouzouki that the two picked up while backpacking Ireland. Although never straying from their vision to create an intimate space with their music, venues, and audiences, the insatiable desire of musical and spiritual progression sprouted a new branch of rock ‘n’ roll in the wooden soul that was originally planted in roots music. “It takes all kinds of music to describe this adventure called life, man.” states, Jhett Schiavone, dripping with sweat in an interview after their opening performance for The Marshall Tucker Band. Callie Sioux expanded, “We call ourselves mountain music because we like to take people through the peaks and valleys of music. I’m a story teller and it takes a lot of elements to create a good story,” After more than 800 shows performed touring with their first album, the second full-length studio recording “Sweet, Sweet Time” was finally dropped Dec. 15th, 2016. “Sweet, Sweet Time” pays homage to the roots of American folk rock while exploring progressive and dynamic song structures that continue to set Gleewood in a category of their own. From heavy hitting blues riffs found in “Shades,” to the cheerful and laid-back conversation of “Colorado Brew,” the album makes obvious nostalgic nods while courteously dismissing the boundaries of genre. Their featured single,”Whiskey Sue,” was covered by AXS as well as broadcasted nationally on Nashville’s Ditty TV. “Whiskey Sue” is an excellent example of the grit and muscle that can be embodied by the trio while still weaving a detailed and multifaceted tale. The song is about Jhett’s great grandfather who ran whiskey moonshine into New York during The Prohibition Era. Both Callie Sioux and Jhett were home educated and never set foot in a public school. The band claims that this was a driving force in sculpting their fervent passion for history which constantly bleeds into their music on tracks like Goodly Fere, My Grandfather’s Grandfather, and Whiskey Sue. The name, “Gleewood” itself is a medieval term used to reference an instrument similar to what we now call the guitar, and was used by the traveling minstrels of the age which can be translated into “the happy guitar.” In one show which Gleewood will pluck heartstrings with a historical ballad, then invoke audiences into a head-banging throng that could rival any heavy rock concert. “Our relationship with Christ requires us to always be moving forward and I want our relationship with music to reflect that,” Jhett states. Like a musical expedition through the wild west, garbed in silver, turquoise, and denim, Gleewood brings a vintage patina to the good, the bad, and the blues. Gleewood holds the torch for New Mexico’s eclectic folk rock revival with all of their current releases recorded and produced in New Mexico with High Country Rock ‘n’ Roll Live and Whiskey Sue Live as the exceptions that were recorded at Sundance Film Festival in Park City, UT. In an age of over stimulation, the heralds of a new era are emerging with a raw, organic, and tangible feel, like leather and oak, sand and stone, with rock at it’s foundation.
- Becky Boyd