NEW YORK (May 29, 2020) ― Widely heralded blues-rocker DANIELIA COTTON has risen again into the light, fiercely and defiantly, with early praise from American Songwriter, BUST Magazine, and beyond for A Different War, her most politically charged album, set for release today on all major digital platforms through Cottontown Music.
A Different War will be celebrated tonight by RadioWoodstock 100.1 with a Sofa Sessions Livestream Concert Event at 7 p.m. ET. Watch it here.
The six-song opus finds the woman whose music is “soulful enough to fill a revival tent” (The New York Times) and whose voice gives her songs “stunning power” (No Depression) speaking to these extraordinary times by unloading her sin while the world around her is gripped in a turbulent spin. Cotton frames A Different War by confronting race, gender, and wealth − deeply personal and pervasive issues that have plagued folks like her for an eternity.
Last week, American Songwriter premiered the music video for “Cheap High,” the second single, now active at Triple-A radio, noting how “Cotton’s raspy voice is tinged with anger and frustration, but she channels her powerful vocal delivery into a cathartic triumph by the song’s end.” Including the album among its Best Bets in “The Hotness” Summer Issue, BUST Magazine raved: “A Different War is an album bursting with soulful blues-rock, delivered with steely confidence. … Whether she’s wailing Janis Joplin-style on ‘Cheap High’ or declaring ‘I was not born a man, but I can do anything that he can,’ on ‘She Too,’ she’s in control, and she’s our kind of belter.”
Adding to the praise for A Different War, MediaNews Group syndicate was impressed at the way Cotton’s “consistent ability to overcome pain and express it through music shines a light on the issues of the day and shows the world what it’s like to continue to fight.” Disciples of Sound called Cotton “a modern-day Bettye LaVette meets Sheryl Crow. She brings forth a vocal performance that is big, bold, emotional, and spilling over with soul – it’ll shake you to the core. … At a time when political vitriol is at its apex, Cotton delivers her message in a framework that lures you in and keeps you connected. Keep your eye on her.” The Classic Rock Podcast marveled at hearing “a beautiful voice that blends blues, soul, and rock to produce an album that once begun, you will complete.”
Throughout her career, the longtime New Yorker from Hopewell, NJ, has drawn praise from the New York Times, Billboard, the Los Angeles Times, NPR, and USA Today, among many others. She continues to inhabit a song, turning it inside and out to create transcendent music and lyrics, and carry us higher and higher with her in her musical flights.
A Different War finds the gutsy New Yorker swimming through the tumultuous social issues of racism and greed, and the tempestuous waters of love and relationships. These are songs deeply rooted in the protest anthems of yesterday but built for the current state of our world. A multi-racial, gospel-fueled, Jewish blues-rocker who believes in the power of womanhood, Cotton grew up in a predominantly white New Jersey community as one of just seven black kids in her high school. She has survived cancer and the tragic loss of twins at birth, only to bounce back and finally welcome a daughter in 2018. Cotton’s consistent ability to overcome pain and express it through music shines a light on the issues of the day and shows the world what it’s like to fight “A Different War.”
The title track examines how the reality of people of color getting called into battle as a result of being marginalized informs their entire existence. Featuring a guest appearance by prominent Bronx hip-hop artist Mickey Factz, the song also urges us to press ahead because of the ongoing need for substantive change. “Cheap High” is a stomping rocker that finds Cotton probing our precarious economic situation, speaking to both personal unhappiness arising from greed, and the dangers of a society mired in economic disparity and despair. The evocative and transporting music of “Forgive Me” mimics the lyrics, which Cotton wrote with her sister, Catherine Fulmer-Hogan, stressing the necessity of forgiveness in any relationship in order for its survival. The fierce feminist anthem “She Too” is a propulsive rocker that rides along with a screaming lead solo. Cotton’s bluesy vocals on this track defiantly proclaim not only equality but a righteous anger at anyone who wants to silence women for raising their voices in unity against abuse, ill and unequal treatment.
A Different War is a true collaboration with some of the most talented musicians and technicians in the business. From Aaron Comess (Spin Doctors, Joan Osborne, Edie Brickell) on drums, Ben Butler (Sting, George Michael, Chris Botti) on guitar, and Andy Hess (Gov’t Mule, Black Crowes) on bass, to young gun guitarist Emmanuel Rossillo working his first major studio project, the record resonates with innovation and flare. The finishing touches of the brilliant mix provided by Dave O’Donnell (James Taylor, Sheryl Crow, John Mayer) and the mastering of Greg Calbi (numerous hits over the past 20 years) make this record a true meeting of the best of the best.
The evidence is clear on A Different War that DANIELIA COTTON continues to evolve and challenge herself as a musician. Fifteen years since her breakout as an Artist to Watch by influential Philadelphia public radio outlet WXPN, Cotton remains a true indie artist fighting for independence – the space to create her own sound and an audience that would journey with her.
Available TODAY at Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon, and where music is consumed online.
“A Different War” Track Listing
- Forgive Me
- A Different War
- Cheap High
- Better Off Without You
- If You Don’t Want Me
- She Too
Genre: Rock, Soul, Blues
RIYL: Lenny Kravitz, Stevie Wonder, Bonnie Raitt, Janis Joplin, Bettye LaVette, Rolling Stones, Black Crowes, Donnie Hathaway, Aerosmith, Lynyrd Skynyrd