Roots Rocker Downtown Mystic – stage name of American songwriter Robert Allen, has announced the release of his 21st Century Rock ‘n Roll record for January 21. The album features the talents of Max Weinberg and Garry Tallent of the legendary E Street Band, along with Steve Holley and Paul Page of Ian Hunter’s band Rant. 21st Century Rock ‘n Roll will be released via The Orchard / Sony Music, and is currently available for pre-order here.
21st Century Rock ‘n Roll contains 11 remastered tracks of the best tracks from DownTown Mystic, 7 of which have synced to the 200+ TV shows that contain DTM music. The album is a chronicle of Allen’s long career, from his early opening performances for Jim Croce, John Prine and Bonnie Raitt, through his years playing in the NYC nightclub scene of the 1970s-80s, to his adoption of studio and vintage recording techniques with Ben Elliott.
Allen’s songwriter talents are fully on display on songs like “Hard Enough,” which paired him with the unrivaled rhythm section of Max Weinberg and Garry Tallent, who composed tracks with Allen while simultaneously recording. songs for Born In The USA with Bruce Springsteen.
“Garry Tallent and I left. I met him when he was working on The River with Bruce. He had come to see my band play in New York and recorded with us when we had a production contract. I kept in touch afterwards. him. came back from The River World Tour and we got together. He chose ‘Hard Enough’ to record because he thought the main riff was something that George Harrison would play and brought in Mighty Max, which I knew from high school.
The outing also offers Allen the opportunity to honor longtime engineer Ben Elliott, who owned and operated Showplace Studios in Dover NJ, until his untimely death in April 2020. Elliott was a DownTown Mystic collaborator for 20 years old and designed all tracks on the 21. Century Rock ‘n Roll. Allen credits Ben with being a leading developer of high-energy sound, combining old-school chops with modern studio work. Allen writes, “If you want to make a good record, it has to sound good… and that was Ben’s strong suit.
Working with Ben has also given DownTown Mystic something in common with Stones legend Keith Richards. Ben was Keith’s personal engineer at the Rolling Stones guitarist’s home studio in Stamford, Connecticut. Robert remembers fondly, “The stories Ben told about his work at Keith’s were hilarious. He really enjoyed every minute with him.” Robert continues, “Keith Richards understands great sound and that’s why he had Ben as his sound engineer, because RnR is all about sound.”
21st century rock ‘n roll mixes the musical vision of Allen and the sound of Ben Elliott to create a characteristic rock distillation that lives up to the genre’s era of unfiltered songwriting and recording inspired. The album is a testament to Allen’s status as a true survivor of rock n ‘roll and an eyewitness to modern American musical history.
Listen to the new single here: