Mutu's Good Trouble

Bruce Von Stiers

There's this guy named Mutlu Onaral, who just goes by Mutlu. He is a vocalist and musician who has played shows with Amos Lee and Hall & Oates.

Mutlu hails from Philadelphia, a city that has spawned many great musical artists. Mutlu's first album was produced by T-Bone Wolk and featured guest appearances by Darryl Hall and Amos Lee. Mutlu went on to record several EP's that received a lot of attention.

This year finds Mutlu with a brand new EP. The seven song EP is titled Good Trouble.

The EP was produced by Mutlu and Darius Amedolia. Aside from composing music for, and producing the film Subprime, Amedolia has been a singer, songwriter and music producer. Good Trouble was mixed and mastered by Phil Nicolo, whose previous work includes music by John Lennon, Bob Dylan and Aerosmith.

Helping out on the songs are Jess Koppelman, Zack Mitchell, Darius Amedolia, Shane Theriot, Klyde Jones, Brian Dunne and Henry Hey. Zack is on drums and has played with The Glorious Rebellions and Three The Hard Way. I mentioned Darius earlier. He is on electric guitar, bass, keys and programming. Jess and Shane are on electric guitar for one song apiece. Aside from producing Dr. John's final album Shane does things like being the musical director for Daryl Hall's television show, Live From Daryl's House. Klyde plays bass on one song. His credits include being a member of the Average White Band and playing with Hall & Oates. Brian has been the drummer for Hall & Oates for a long time. He plays drums on one song on this EP. And Henry does the keyboards on one song. He has recorded with David Bowie and was the musical director for Lazarus and the musical director for Rod Stewart's Great American Songbook.

As for Mutlu himself, he plays acoustic and electric guitar on the EP. He does the lead vocal as well.

A couple of the songs on Good Trouble deal with the cultural and political landscape that we find ourselves in these days. One of those songs in Not Escapable. It begins almost as a folk / reggae styled tune and moves into a slight alt folk groove. It deals with opiates. Presidential tweets and has strong lyrics such as “weaponizing anger as a cure for fear.” Trying to tune out all of the angst and look for a better tomorrow is kind of the theme of the song.

95 To 5 has a killer groove beat. It is another song about how difficult life is these days and what we need to do to get by.

Scarred is a haunting tune about kind of giving up ‘cause life has become too difficult. Great vocals with terrific acoustic guitar.

Work For It is a light groove tune that deals with trying to make life a little bit better.

Oh My Girl is a soul tune with fantastic vocals and cool music.

Another light groove tune that is really cool is Nothing In This Whole Wide World. Mutlu brought in a very special guest to help out on vocals. That guest is John Oates, who greatly complements Mutlu's vocals. This is the song that also features Shane Theriot, Klyde Jones, Brian Dunne and Henry Hey.

The lead song for the album is Lifeline. It is a very cool, toe-tapping tune that has some slick, subtle guitar. It is about trying to make life better all around, that we ”need a lifeline before we drown.”

Mutlu is one of those artists that you may never have heard of. But once you listen to his music, I'm sure you will become a fan. His vocals have a certain melodic appeal and the music in the songs complements them well.

Good Trouble is now available on Spotify, iTunes, amazon and other digital and traditional music outlets.

If you'd like to learn more about Mutlu and Good Trouble, go to his official web site at

Mutlu also has a Facebook music page at


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© 2019 Bruce E Von Stiers