Winston's latest album ("The Two Tones") was released on December 17th. The album is a lively collaboration between Winston and a group of musicians from the Kansas City area who are steeped in the traditions of reggae and ska. When melded with Apple’s pop-rock sensibilities and a three piece horn section featuring some of KC’s finest jazz musicians, the resulting album features a very unique sound.
The album features nine new songs written by Winston and reggae and ska versions of six more songs from Winston’s catalog, including a reggae version of “Shoot ‘em Up, Cowboy” (now re-titled simply “Shoot ‘em Up”). The original (rock) version of that song led to a recording contract with Monument Records for Winston (then recording as “Gary Apple”). It was getting good air-play and heading up Record World’s singles chart in September of 1978 when Monument’s distribution deal with Phonogram expired and was not renewed. Despite the fact that it was no longer being promoted, the song spent nine weeks on the singles chart in Record World. Now (minus the “Cowboy”) “Shoot ’em Up” will get a second chance.
As a singer-songwriter, Winston has always recorded using session musicians, but in the early stages of this project it became apparent that a band was being born. Several of the musicians expressed an interest in doing some gigs as a group and “Winston Apple and the Two Tones” made their debut as a live act at recordBar in Kansas City in February of 2013 in the middle of the recording project. The album title was changed to “The Two Tones” to reflect the fact that it was very much a group effort.
"Winston Apple and the Two Tones" will be touring extensively in 2014 to promote the album and to "let the good times roll" for audiences everywhere.