Joan Jett & The Blackhearts Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2015


I appreciate all the kind words about Joan Jett & The Blackhearts getting inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.  As the guitar player in the original barnstorming band that played every little club in the country I’m very excited for them.  There have been a lot of guys who have contributed to the Blackhearts legacy since Gary Ryan, Danny O’brien and I answered the add in the LA Weekly that said “Joan Jett is looking for 3 good men”.  Before forming the Blackhearts with Joan the three of us had already been a band for a while playing with both Rik L Rik and Top Jimmy in Los Angeles.

I’m very lucky that Kenny Laguna became involved in Joan Jett & The Blackhearts and convinced us, after we’d been to London and Holland, to move from Hollywood to New York City.  Kenny took us to see both the Mets and the Yankees the first week we were here and told us we needed to “pick a team”.  In New York City the band found the lovely and deeply missed late Lee Crystal to play drums and we also got to work with songwriting legend and producer Ritchie Cordell.

I learned quickly that you could do more  in a day in New York than you could in a week in LA. As a guy from Batavia, Illinois I’ve always felt welcome in NYC and it was Joan who brought me here.

Joan’s better than almost anyone knows.  I never saw her do less than a kick ass show from our first month-long Tuesday residency at the Whiskey A Go Go to the last gig I played with her opening for Alice Cooper at the Cape Cod Coliseum.  Of all the people I’ve ever played with only Dan Baird has the kind of rock solid immovable rhythm guitar clock that Joan does.  You can build a fortress on the foundation she lays down with her right hand.

Every year the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducts a band that has had more than a few members over the years.  The committee picks the version of the band that gets inducted.  That’s just how it works. The band they went with didn’t include me. I’m fine with that.  The people who saw the original band criss cross the USA booked by Ian Copeland’s fledgling agency FBI at a lot of clubs that never even had an original band before knew they witnessed a real force of nature.  Those original fans became a family that got larger as Joan’s music reached more people.  I’m not alone in the alumni column.  There’s a lot of great guys who came through the band after me that won’t have to buy a new suit either.  Kasim Sultan, Kenny Aronson, Thommy Price and Tony Bruno are a few.  Thommy Price is still playing with Joan.

Again, I’m very thankful for the start in music that I got with Joan.  I’m not sure I ever would have moved to NYC where I started the Del-Lords with Scott Kempner, Frank Funaro and Manny Caiati, began my producing career which would eventually have me working with great people like Nils Lofgren, The Bottle Rockets, Jimbo Mathus, Blue Mountain, Ryan Adams, Mojo Nixon, Spanking Charlene and Freedy Johnston.  I’ve toured and or recorded with lots of great people including Steve Earle & The Dukes also playing on his Grammy winning record The Revolution Starts…Now in 2005.  I’ve been a member of the Yayhoos with Dan Baird, Terry Anderson and Keith Christopher.  Had my own band Roscoe’s Gang and made some solo records including one with the undisputed king of recording in Springfield, MO the late great Lou Whitney.  I own and operate a recording studio (Cowboy Technical) in Williamsburg Brooklyn with my partner Tim Hatfield and also had a great bar called the Lakeside Lounge (1996-2012) in the East Village with my partner “The Hound” Jim Marshall.

And on top of all that I once played “Rebel Rebel” with Joan and the Coasters on a pier on the west side of Manhattan.

So, I’m not gonna be getting cut off on tv saying thanks in my new suit.  As the original guitar player in Joan Jett & The Blackhearts I’m saying thanks here now to Joan Jett, Kenny Laguna, Danny, Gary & Lee and I’m saying thanks to all of you too.

Eric Ambel December 16, 2014

Joan Jett & The Blackhearts at SIR in Hollywood '80

Joan Jett & The Blackhearts at SIR in Hollywood ’80

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Thanks for a terrific 2014

Hello Friends and music fans.  It’s been a while since I posted over here but it’s not for lack of music making.

2014 brought a bunch of records that I was lucky to produce including “Good Luck” by Girls, Guns & Glory, “Fall On In” by Maynard & The Musties, “Hipster Retirement Home” by Los Dudes and “Volume One” by the brilliant Sad Bastards of Brooklyn.  Also mixed “The Last Days of Winter” by George Usher and Lisa Burns and the audio for the upcoming Bottle Rockets live DVD release.

I’ve got new recordings underway with a bunch of great artists including Esquela, the Surreal McCoys, The Jack Grace Band, Jollett, Planetary Nights, HEAP, Girls, Guns & Glory and The Bottle Rockets studio followup to 2009’s “Lean Forward”.

2014 has seen a lot guitar sessions too including tracks for The Gang produced by Jono Manson, the single for DL Marble’s upcoming release “Drag Me Back” and Jimbo Mathus‘ latest “Dark Night of The Soul”.

I had much fun performing with Spanking Charlene, Los Dudes, Mark McKay and Jimbo Mathus & The Tri-State Coalition this year.

2015 is going to bring more great new music from the Del-Lords and also the first new Eric Ambel release since 2004’s Knucklehead to be produced by the very awesome Jimbo Mathus.

The hardest part of all this year was loosing my mentor, friend, life coach and guru the incomparable Louis B. Whitney.  I’ve never known a more giving person. Lou carried a spark that could never be extinguished.  Lou will be missed every day as I work the path that I learned from him and with those thoughts I think of all the other lives he touched and his lovely wife and Honey Bunny Kay Tolliver Whitney.  RIP Lou.

Lou Whitney at Column One in Springfield, MO during the recording of "Roscoe's Gang"

Lou Whitney at Column One in Springfield, MO during the recording of “Roscoe’s Gang”


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Baby it’s cold outside!

A late welcome to the year 2014 and the fans of music.

First, thanks to all that came out to see the Del-Lords 2013 Fall/Winter dates in the US, UK and Europe.

A couple very cool new Produced by Eric “Roscoe” Ambel records released for your enjoyment.

First up is “Volume One” by Sad Bastards of Brooklyn.  12 songs recorded one evening at Cowboy Tech with Mario Viele engineering with Charlene McPherson and Mo Goldner (vocals and guitar respectively) from the band Spanking Charlene.  This is one of the most simple yet elegant recordings I’ve ever had the good fortune to be involved in.  “Volume One” is available now at Bandcamp (where you can listen to the entire record) and iTunes.

Sad Bastards of Brooklyn "Volume One"

Sad Bastards of Brooklyn “Volume One”

Next up is the fiery new rock and roll record titled “Good Luck” from Boston’s #1 Alt. Country band Girls Guns and Glory.  Recorded at Cowboy Tech over a couple long weekends and mixed at Evie’s in Clinton Hill we went for bringing out elements of the band’s live sound and highlighting the interplay between Ward Hayden’s voice and Chris Hersch’s guitar.  “Good Luck” is available on CD and Vinyl from the band’s website.

Girls Guns and Glory "Good Luck"

Girls Guns and Glory “Good Luck”

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Del-Lords Trans-Atlantic Tour 2013


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2013: 6 Months, 6 Albums

6 covers


Produced by Eric “Roscoe” Ambel

All of this music is avialable as a cd or a download and the Jimbo Mathus “White Buffalo” is availble on vinyl too.  Please follow the links below to get to the music. Elvis Club is the first Del-Lords full length cd in 23 years.  The band is also playing NYC June 27th.  Visit the website for details.

Jimbo Mathus‘ White Buffalo is available at Fat Possum Jimbo is currently criss crossing the nation with his band the Tri-State Coalition.

Esquela’s 2nd record Are We Rolling? is wild music from Bovina, NY and you can score a copy at the Esquela Joint.

Ellen Foley’s return to recording is a fantastic thing to behold. About Time indeed!

Chris Berardo & The DesBerardos play full on unapologetic Country Rock and their new single is a taste of great things on the way from the band.

Karen Hudson’s Sonic Bloom has just been released.  You gotta hear it.  Great songs, singing and playing.

Hope you enjoy this music.


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Elvis Club: the wink release!

Ok friends,

the first Del-Lords full length in over 20 years is not out till May 14th but you can get it at all the digital joints including Bandcamp (where you can listen to the whole thing if you like).  Bandcamp release includes a pdf of the album art and all of the credits.  The actual CD is now available at the Del-Lords site.  Shipping as of today, April 10  (big secret).  Jump on it! There is rock and roll within.  Keep an eye on the Del-Lords site or join the Del-Lords Facebook Group for more info and what not.  Made in Brooklyn.


 Elvis Club Cover

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Del-Lords action 2013

The Del-Lords first new full length record since way back comes out May 15

Looks like iTunes has scooped the release!

Elvis Club - The Del Lords

Check out our introduction video.  And yes, there will be gigs coming!

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February Communique

First 2013 news blurt:  New Del-Lords record titled “Elvis Club” will be released on GB Music May 14.  It has been a long time coming and all of us are excited about the release.

The Eric Ambel produced Jimbo Mathus record “White Buffalo” was just released by Fat Possum Records and it’s available as a cd, download or vinyl LP.  Super excited about Jimbo’s new record.  I am sure you will dig it.

Jimbo & Roscoe at the White Water Tavern in Little Rock, AR

Jimbo & Roscoe at the White Water Tavern in Little Rock, AR

In the Studio: The 2nd Esquela record which was recorded up in Bovina, NY and mixed at Evies is ready for mastering.  Ambel is in the final mix stage of the upcoming Los Dudes “Hipster Retirement Home”, Karen Hudson‘s “Sonic Bloom” and a record for Ellen Foley.

Plenty of guitar gigs coming up with Chris Berardo & The DesBerardos and also the Mark McKay Band.  Keep an eye on the Gigs page for the latest.

Jimbo Mathus & the Tri-State Coalition: In the Garden

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2012: A High Speed Year

Awful lot of great music this year.  Eric Ambel produced records from Spanking Charlene, Maynard & The Musties, Planetary Nights, The Ghost Wolves and D.L. Marble all got released this year.  The new Del-Lords record titled “Elvis Club” and “White Buffalo” by Jimbo Mathus & The Tri-State Coalition are just a couple on deck for release early in 2013.

Had a great time  playing gigs this year with the Desberardos, Mark McKay and Spanking Charlene. Highlight had to be the great tour of Iraq with Mary Lee’s Corvette.

Also almost ready for 2013 are the new Los Dudes record, an album by Karen Hudson the follow up to “The Owl Has Landed” from Esquela and a wild one from Chris Berardo & the DesBerardos.  Gigs with the Desberardos, Mark McKay and the great tour of Iraq with Mary Lee’s Corvette.

Thanks to all the friends, bands and staff who supported the Lakeside Lounge (’96-2012). I miss you all more than I can say.


The Del-Lords played the benefit for Mark Spencer’s Tape Kitchen in Brooklyn on Dec 11, 2012

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Back to School…..again

After a fast and furious summer Mr Ambel is feeling the heat of his self imposed deadline.  Lots of recording action this summer including more tracks for the follow up to Los Dudes self titled record, more recording for Chris Berardo & the DesBerardos and a hard hitting single from Austin band the Ghost Wolves.  The new Del-Lords record titled “Elvis Club” is mixed and mastered and awaiting a release date from GB Music.  Jimbo Mathus‘ “White Buffalo” is also done and set to be released on Fat Possum Records at the beginning of the year.

Ambel will be attending the Americana Music Festival in Nashville, TN.  Performing with Jimbo Mathus & The Tri-State Coalition on Friday at the Mercy Lounge at 8pm and also speaking on the Producer Panel on Friday at 2pm.  Keep an eye on the ‘gigs page’ for gig info.

Also, check out Eric Ambel on Brooklyn Country Radio.  Hour long podcast with interview and solo acoustic performance.

Los Dudes at CTS Recording Rig


Chris Berardo

Chris Berardo


Ghost Wolves at CTS

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