Anthony Leon and the Chain
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Anthony Leon and the Chain

Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States | SELF

Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States | SELF
Band Americana Alternative


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Chained Melodies"

A Sharp
Chained Melodies
Alex De Vore

I braved the rain one recent Friday night and walked all 20 yards from my house to catch Anthony Leon and the Chain at Tin Star Saloon. I’d heard plenty of good things about the band in the last few months, and figured it was time to see what the hoopla was all about. To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect, given everyone everywhere ever has a hell of a time describing music. I was pretty sure I’d be seeing another run-of-the-mill Americana band, but was pleasantly surprised.

While singer and guitarist Leon, bassist Carlos Rodriguez and drummer Daniel Jaramillo aren’t changing the face of music, the band is still a refreshing addition to the increasingly stale and oversaturated Americana and/or landscape of the local scene.

Within moments of the first tune, I was reminded of mid-’90s rock band Polaris. Y’know, the band that performed the hit song “Hey Sandy” over the opening credits of The Adventures of Pete & Pete? Yeah, that band. Ever-so-subtle surf-rock undertones peeked out from behind nouveau-blues guitar work. Leon’s voice is soulful with a slight country twang—but remarkable enough not to be compared to other singers’ country twang. And it works well with what the band is going for: a fun and poppy take on an altogether too emo-fied genre.

By the third song, Leon and company were treading dangerously into Dave Matthews Band territory, as the vocals emulated douche-lord Dave himself, and the less-than-inspired guitar work reminded me of a Sublime B-side. I did my very best to play it cool and repeated my “You can’t win ’em all!” mantra to myself.

This slight stumble was remedied during the following jam, a foray into late-’50s-style doo-wop, layered sneakily beneath 12-bar blues. The musical arrangement added pure emotion to what I can only assume (it was hard to make out the vocals) was a pained love song about missing the one you love.

“I’m a very religious man,” Leon announced as The Chain began its next song, a gospel-esque ditty that describes one who has “found the light.” I strongly doubted Leon’s declaration of faith, but I’m a sucker for old-timey gospel lyricism, and I’d be lying if I told you my toes weren’t tapping.

Rodriguez didn’t stray far from country-style bass work, but in its simplicity lies the key to any successful rhythm musician: He kept time! Yeah, that sounds novel but, the truth is, I breathed a sigh of relief knowing he wasn’t interested in needlessly complicated bass acrobatics. Rodriguez knew his place and kept things moving quite properly.

Though his drum kit sounded a tad flat, Jaramillo constantly floored me with complex fills not usually found in this genre. I don’t care how good your guitarist or bassist is; if your drummer is boring, you’ve got a real problem. Jaramillo proved once again that a solid drummer is indeed worth paying attention to, and I salute his stimulating work.

The Chain transitioned between so many sounds and packed so many different genres into each number that I was left guessing—something I’ve sorely missed of late. As more and more bands in Santa Fe seem to give up on originality in favor of simply giving the booze-fueled crowds exactly what they want, The Chain works hard to keep it interesting—but still light and poppy. It’s almost as if the band were playing a trick on local bar patrons by forcing them to listen to musical styles they don’t even know they like yet.

Anthony Leon and the Chain is perfect for Santa Feans with no interest in hearing anything outside the one or two things they enjoy (don’t lie, you know it’s true) but, for those willing to dig a little deeper, they’ll find this band to be deceptive in its creative songwriting. It does justice to bands categorized as pop everywhere.
- Santa Fe Reporter

"Press Clips"

Anthony Leon
Press Sheet

“….monsterous sound….with killer hooks….”

“...Anthony Leon and the Chain doing it like it’s supposed to be done (at the Free Fall Fest)…”

Gabe Gomez
KBAC, Santa Fe, New Mexico

“…the big surprise of the day was Anthony Leon and the Chain. Anthony….does rockabilly and rocking honky-tonk. And does it well…”

Stephen W. Terrell
KSFR, Santa Fe, New Mexico

“….(I) can't wait to do something again with Anthony Leon & the Chain! (They are) OFF THE HOOK!”

John Treadwell
KBAC, Frogville Records, Santa Fe, New Mexico

"Anthony Leon and the Chain refreshes the Americana scene....(he) is a bitchin' guitarist...(and)...a wonderful singer... (The band) a refreshing addition to the increasingly stale and over-saturated Americana and/or Alt. Country landscape.....Leon's voice is soulful with a slight country twang...(and)…The Chain works hard to keep it interesting...(They are) of our new favorite bands!”

Alex De Vore
Santa Fe Reporter

“…Johnny Cash-style vocals of Anthony Leon”

Dennis Carroll
Santa Fe New Mexican
- Various


Debut CD to be released in Spring of 2011. Produced by Jono Manson.



Once a generation an artist comes along that defies description. One that breaks all the rules. That creates their own genre. A songwriter that wears his influences on his sleeve, and is powerful enough to mention alongside those groundbreaking music icons: Hank Williams, Jimmie Rodgers, Townes Van Zandt, The Louvin Brothers, Gram Parsons, Johnny Cash, Dwight Yoakam, Keith Richards, and Tom Petty. Anthony Leon is that and more.

Anthony’s songs have the ability to truly touch his listeners. He writes of love lost and found, life's rewards and regrets, and the search for truth, purpose, and meaning in what may sometimes appear to be a meaningless world.

In an era where most music is formulaic, disposable, and ordinary, Anthony Leon is an artist that brings new meaning to the word “original”. Seeing him one time will convince even the most jaded listener that they are witnessing one the best of the next generation of singer-songwriters.

Born and Raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Carlos Rodriguez has immersed himself in music since he was a young boy. He has since played the guitar, bass guitar, sang, written songs, toured and recorded with many area bands. His talent ranges all over the musical arena - playing everything from country to hardcore/punk.

Drummer Daniel Jaramillo was born and raised in Espanola, NM and began playing drums at his church when he was 13. In high school, his tastes grew to appreciate Led Zeppelin, The Who, Pink Floyd, and the Seattle grunge scene.

He later met up with Anthony in Santa Fe, an joined him first in Stone Deep. As Stone Deep morphed into Anthony Leon and the Chain, Daniel's steady drumming, and melodic harmony work assured his place as the cornerstone of the rhythm section.

Anthony Leon and the Chain have performed at key venues throughout NM, and are planning to tour this summer, with the release of their debut CD, tentatively entitled "Brand New Model". Don't miss them.