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Benito, Texas-born blues singer, Charley Crockett’s music enjoys a great deal of freedom as you have country, rock, pop and country soul merge into a package in support of his strong, emotive vocals. He throws quite a wide loop, reason being he was once a street musician in New Orleans, it was there he absorbed a great deal of traditional mountain music, honky tonk country, an his travelling doesn’t stop there because apart from New York’s subways, California his music also took him to mainland Europe.
“How Long Will I Last” boosts hints of Memphis where the record was recorded and Muscle Shoals. It isn’t the only occasion he takes a trip Down South, since the track that follows in the album’s running order “If Not The Fool” likewise stretches Americana’s boundaries. Though excellent there’s a bunch more on the record I would place ahead of it. I prefer the likes of a funky tale that takes the listener on a trip through Louisiana via the brass warmed, “Help Me Georgia” and with tinkling piano and sympathetic lead guitar “Lonesome As A Shadow” that help cement a groove not only Crockett would be proud of.
"Sad & Blue" sees his music detour a touch too far for Americana, albeit the swirling organ connects; he is better staying closer to Americana roots music. The record was in need of as change as “Lil’ Girl’s Name” burst out of the traps even if it is loaded in soul, but the energy of lead guitar and solid rhythms he gains approval. Crockett’s songs but for “Ain’t Gotta Worry Child” are all under three minutes as he revisits some of the old ways, how many singer-songwriters trying to make it tend to go for songs lasting around (a long) five minutes and leave the listener wondering was there a need for a good editor! Whipping up a storm Crockett and his band, that include a little sax adding to accordion, piano, lead guitar and a rock solid rhythm speak of “Goin’ Back To Texas”. Texas is also the focal point on the stellar opening cut “I Wanna Cry”, and with him delivering those treasures lines I woke up this morning he follows it with the infectious swing (due to liberal use of pedal steel guitar) like “The Sky’d Becomes Teardrops”. At the closing of which Crockett s asks Jerry, (Lee Lewis) is your ol’ leg wiggling?
Closing piece, “Change Yo’ Mind” is up there with his best, and with his loose easy style the record Charley Crockett gets to ride off into the sunset smelling of roses.
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