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CHARLEY CROCKETT — LONESOME AS A SHADOW  (Thirty Tigers)

www.thirtytigers.com

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.  

Maurice Hope   

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May 2018

1
John Prine
67 pts.
The Tree of Forgiveness
Oh Boy Records
JJC,MB,SP,RM
2
Levi Parham
58 pts.
It's All Good
Continental Records
CRS,JB,TK
3
Jeb Barry and the Pawn Shop Saints
55 pts.
Texas, etc...
DollyRocker
HDB,CVL,DHO
4
Michael McDermott
54 pts.
Out From Under
Continental Song City
JDO,LK,BK
5
Sam Morrow
48 pts.
Concrete and Mud
Forty Below Records
MA,JBO,HB
6
Caleb Caudle
39 pts.
Crushed Coins
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
7
Western Centuries
36 pts.
Songs From The Deluge
Free Dirt Records
MF
8
Carter Sampson
34 pts.
Lucky
Continental Song City
 
9
Charley Crockett
30 pts.
Lonesome as a Shadow
Son of Davy/30 Tigers
 
10
Courtney Marie Andrews
28 pts.
May Your Kindness Remain
Loose Music
JV
11
Ed Romanoff
27 pts.
The Orphan King
Pinerock Records
 
 
Joan Baez
27 pts.
Whistle Down The Wind
Proper Records
HD
 
Pharis and Jason Romero
27 pts.
Sweet Old Religion
Lula Records
SZ,LM
14
Gretchen Peters
24 pts.
Dancing With The Beast
Proper Records
KG
 
Old Crow Medicine Show
24 pts.
Volunteer
Columbia Records
GF
 
Will Stewart
24 pts.
County Seat
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
17
Ben Reel
22 pts.
Land Of Escape
B REEL Records
GC,FC
 
Birds Of Chicago
22 pts.
Love In Wartime
Signature Sounds
 
 
Emily Herring
22 pts.
Gliding
Eight 30 Records
RST,RH
20
Jenny van West
21 pts.
Happiness To Burn
Independent
PJ,FS,JJ
 
Mary Gauthier
21 pts.
Rifles And Rosary Beads
In the Black Records
 
22
Sarah Shook & The Disarmers
20 pts.
Years
Bloodshot Records
FCE
23
David Starr
19 pts.
South And East
Independent
HM
24
Cold Tone Harvest
18 pts.
After You
Independent
 
25
Grant Peeples
17 pts.
Settling Scores vol. 2
Continental

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