Since their 2011 debut, Oakland-based group Idiot Grins have gradually infused R&B and soul into their sound, genres all five members share a mutual fondness for. Their new album Big Man was created with influences like Booker T and the MG’s and Sam & Dave in mind. These nostalgic touching stones were bolstered even more so by having the album mastered at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis. Plus, guitarist Randy Strauss used a historically prolific piece of history on the album. “I’m fortunate to own the guitar Gram Parsons played on his last album and tour before his tragic death”, he says, “and it was my own tribute to him to play it on songs like ‘Paso Robles’.” A reverence for the traditional R&B and rock of the past is highly evident in the sound and aforementioned creative process, evidenced well by the catchy “Idiot Grins”, which has a brass section reminiscent of Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes. Look out for Big Man shortly.