Single Review: Vento, Ziggy, Hawk & McCarthy’s Cover of Rick Nelson’s “Garden Party”

Vento, Ziggy, Hawk & McCarthy, a Pittsburgh-based acoustic quartet known for their harmony-rich folk rock, have released a cover of Rick Nelson’s classic hit, “Garden Party.” The single, available on all major streaming platforms from July 12th, 2024, showcases the group’s talent for transforming classic tunes into their unique acoustic style.

The cover stays true to the original spirit of Nelson’s “Garden Party,” while infusing it with the quartet’s signature sound. The arrangement emphasizes rich vocal harmonies and acoustic instrumentation, highlighting the strengths of each member:

– John Vento brings a soulful, slightly gritty vocal tone and steady percussion, grounding the song with a strong rhythmic base.
– Bob Zigerelli’s guitar work is both intricate and expressive, adding a layer of melodic complexity.
– Cherylann Hawk adds a warm, emotive vocal layer, complementing Vento’s lead with harmonies that enrich the overall sound. She also provides a powerful lead verse in her own right.
– Kevin McCarthy rounds out the ensemble with versatile guitar playing that spans blues, jazz, and rock influences.

The highlight of the cover is the interplay of harmonies between Vento, Hawk, and McCarthy. Their voices blend seamlessly, creating a lush, textured soundscape that enhances the nostalgic and reflective lyrics of the song. Hawk’s vocals particularly stand out during the verses, bringing a fresh, heartfelt interpretation to the familiar lines.

Recorded at Maplewood Studio in Ambridge, PA, under the guidance of David Granati, the production quality is polished and professional. The acoustic elements are crisp and clear, with each instrument and vocal part given space to shine. The balance between the vocals and instruments is well-managed, ensuring that the harmonies are always front and center without overwhelming the delicate guitar work.

Vento, Ziggy, Hawk & McCarthy’s cover of “Garden Party” is a testament to their ability to reinterpret classic songs with a fresh, contemporary twist. Their harmonious blend of vocals and acoustic instrumentation breathes new life into Rick Nelson’s timeless hit. Fans of folk rock and acoustic music will find much to appreciate in this well-crafted cover, and it sets a promising tone for the group’s future releases.