Strahan’s second solo album marks a departure from the country roots of his 2014 debut Coal Black Dreams, Late Night Schemes. With The Good Neighbors, Strahan has solidified a sound that marries his love of country lyrics and delivery, with Southern rock grooves peppered with the influences of The Allman Brothers Band and ZZ Top. To listen to the album, is to take a step back in time to the warm tones of Muscle Shoals, and the rowdy parties at the Moontower during a 1970s summer night in Texas.
“To put it simply, we are an American Band, or if you’re into the whole sub-genre thing, then call it American Old School. It’s funky but it isn’t funk; there’s country, soul, and blues in there, but it isn’t any of these. Like my favorite bands from the 60s and 70s, we’re steeped in old school American music, but we’ve evolved into something all it’s own,” Strahan says of his sound with The Good Neighbors.
Moving south from Illinois for warmer weather and a barroom education of country picking was, according to Doug, one of the best decisions he’s made in his adult life (among a plethora of bad choices). After 13 years of playing lead guitar in various bands, as well as recording and co-leading with Ethan Shaw, Austin’s strangest boogie-doom-beast, Chili Cold Blood and cosmic country purveyors of funky tonk, The Moonhangers, Strahan released his first solo album to critical acclaim. Coal Black Dreams, Late Night Schemes (2014, Blood Chili Records) eased Doug in the direction of a lyrically driven, gritty southern, Blue-Eyed Soul -- a trajectory that can be heard in much of his music from the past decade.