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Steve J. Dawson / Press

"Few Chicago singer-songwriters have been as solid for as long as Steve Dawson—and part of the reason has to be that he's never changed his impeccably crafted mix of twang, soul, and pop in order to follow a trend. He writes great songs and sings them beautifully"

Chicago Reader

"As part of Chicago's criminally under-known Dolly Varden he's churned out nothing but quality for 15 years, but his second solo outing, I Will Miss The Trumpets & The Drums carries the timeless inflection of vintage Roy Orbison and George Harrison...one of the great pop-rock voices of our time, a set of pipes both instantly appealing and flecked with warm, individual character. Think Ace-era Paul Carrack mixed with Elliott Smith and Big Star's Chris Bell. Put into service for compositions packed with melody, texture and winning wordplay and you have a classic artist hiding in plain sight"


“As chief steward of Chicago’s alt-country combo Dolly Varden, Steve Dawson’s status as an Americana original is unquestioned. Yet even though his tenure with the band has produced five albums over the course of a 15-year history, Dawson still has plenty to offer individually. This, his second solo album (third if one counts ‘Duets’, recorded with foil Diane Christiansen), stakes out new terrain by embedding soul, a hint of gospel and even some brass into his standard MO. The results can be surprising at times, with strong arrangements and a series of stunning vignettes like “Obsidian”, “Long Overdue,” “A Conversation With No One” and “Today She Found the Way (To Break My Heart)” adding up to one superb set”

M Music & Musicians magazine

"Much of the album was created by Dawson working solo in his Chicago studio and it has been put together beautifully with a eye for detail, splashes of pedal steel, vibraphone and violin carefully blended with guitar and keyboards, there's a range of styles on display here, from the acoustic solo ‘Long Overdue’ to the catchy retro-pop soul of ‘Goodbye’, the quality shines throughout"

Beat Surrender

“Steve Dawson, frontman for the Chicago group Dolly Varden, releases his second solo album "I Will Miss the Trumpets and the Drums", and boy is this one a corker. Dawson lends his considerable skill towards this eclectic humdinger of an album that tantalizes the ears and calms the soul. The best thing about the album is the musical journey, leaving a feeling you’ve just been taken somewhere special. Super duper.”

Americana UK

“Steve Dawson has made an exquisite blue-eyed soul record. The warmth and soul that oozes from the digital bits encoded on this cd keep me returning to it over and over again"”

Craig Bonnell - Songs: Illinois

“Between the lines of Steve Dawson's Sweet Is the Anchor, there's a riot going on -- albeit a contemplative one, impelled by the neo-country soul a man must make if he's stranded on a floodplain with Al Green's The Belle Album and a short-wave radio picking up news of another airstrike.”

Roy Kasten - St. Louis Riverfront Times