“Hustler” by The Commonheart is Dan’s DJ pick of the week! Released in May 2022, “Hustler” is a single we’re loving from their latest album For Work or Love.
The band itself consists of Clinton Cegg (vocalist), Abby Gross (sax), Nate Insko (trumpet), Cole Insko (drums), Anton DeFade (bass), Lucas Bowman (keyboard), and Mike Minda (guitar). Based out of Pittsburgh, The Commonheart has been on the come-up in rock & roll soul music for a minute now. Produced by Steve Berlin of popular rock band Los Lobos, The Commonheart started gaining traction touring with them in 2017. The band’s exceptional stage presence and charisma quickly began earning new fans all over the U.S. right before Covid-19 hit. Suddenly frontman Clinton Clegg found himself inspired with new emotions as the worldwide lockdown prevented all live performances. As the lead vocalist and songwriter of the group, Cegg channeled his frustration with these new roadblocks and turned it into art in the form of the album For Work or Love.
“Hustler” begins instantly with a funky, ear-grabbing horn riff. A little reminiscent of James Brown, Cegg’s striking vocal keeps the tenacious energy up throughout the song. Lyrics like “I’m a hustler baby, and I want you to know, hard times is coming” really make the listener resonate with the powerful emotion reflected in his voice as well as the backing singers. The production on this track only adds to this desperate uncertainty. During the verses, Clegg sings of worry for his future as he feels life is moving too fast. Losing people close to him, he reminds himself to keep going even in the face of loss and isolation. The horn section really takes the reins on this one with powerful melodies and a gritty jazz guitar solo. The listener can easily relate to Cegg’s turmoil throughout the song with verse lyrics like “I can’t make no mistakes, ’cause there’s no forgiveness”. We’ve all experienced different challenges with the pandemic, but “Hustler” is bound to be relatable to anyone who found themselves lost in it.
Keep up with The Commonheart via their website here. Also, be sure to listen to the rest of the beautifully honest For Work or Love! You’ll be sure to find yourself entranced in the groovy funk rock & roll energy. Check out “Hustler” on YouTube below:
Tune in to 100.1 FM and lightning100.com all week to hear “Hustler” by The Commonheart, Dan’s DJ Pick of the Week. Share your thoughts on the track by tagging #L100DJPicks on Twitter.