Mindi Abair & The Boneshakers’ third studio album, No Good Deed, is set for release on June 28 on Abair’s Pretty Good For A Girl Records.
Featuring an enthralling array of original material along with some cleverly reworked covers of songs from the Rascals, Etta James and others, No Good Deed is the band’s most multidimensional album to date and reflects the longtime camaraderie between the Boneshakers’ Randy Jacobs (guitar and vocals), Rodney Lee (keys), Ben White (bass, vocals) and Third Richardson (drums, vocals) and lead vocalist and award-winning saxophonist Mindi Abair. Not only does the album showcase the band members’ diverse talents and knack for creating music that is undeniably evocative and irrepressibly energetic; this time they’ve peeled back the layers to reveal more of their respective influences, unleashing unbridled infusions of punk, jazz and blues.
It took only five days to record the album, which was done at the legendary EastWest Studios in Hollywood. Acclaimed producer Kevin Shirley (Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, Joe Bonamassa), who had worked with the band on their first studio record, The EastWest Sessions, returned once again. Going into the studio, the band already knew what they wanted to do, didn’t overthink things, and let creative inspiration and adrenaline lead them — a methodology that’s not new to them.
“It’s really the way that we love to make records,” says Abair. “We’re all in the studio at the same time and we’re really cognizant of how we want to capture and keep that spirit, that energy, that chemistry — because sometimes you can lose it after playing through a song too many times — it’s just not the same, because you’re thinking about it too much.”
The original material featured on No Good Deed takes a journey along the mood and energy spectrum — defiance and decisiveness meet remorse and reflection for a seductive, energizing and intoxicating romp, all propelled by the work of phenomenal musicians: Jacobs’ amped up and versatile lead guitar, White’s pumping baselines, Lee’s jazz-inspired keyboard virtuosity, Richardson’s expansive command of the drums and cymbals and Abair’s gripping vocals and untouchable mastery of the saxophone.
Check out the first sampling of the album, Who’s Gonna Save My Soul?
Before she and the Boneshakers were a band, Mindi Abair had already made her mark as an award-winning sax player, with two Grammy nominations and eight records to her credit. Her edgy, contemporary style of playing was widely sought after by bands like Aerosmith and Duran Duran — both of whom she toured with extensively.
Abair first met Jacobs at a gig where she witnessed him do a back flip off the stage and into the audiences without missing a chord change. Jacobs, who played in Bonnie Raitt’s band and Was Not Was, became a regular player on her solo records, but it was later, when Abair sat in with the Boneshakers at the Newport Beach Jazz Festival in 2014, that the two musical forces became one.
“We’ve got a lot of years together as a band,” says Abair. “And what you hear on No Good Deeddrips of me and the Boneshakers but also unveils variations of where the band can go. We pushed into other spaces that we’re really comfortable in — we just hadn’t showed them to the world yet.”
The band tapped renowned visual artist Nick Egan to design the album’s cover art (which they’re keeping under wraps until the album drops). Egan’s portfolio features a who’s who of talent, from the Sex Pistols to Oasis to INXS. “Great art just amplifies great music and it was incredible to work with my friend Nick,” says Abair. “He captured our spirit so completely with this album cover and art — It’s amazing.”