Saturday, July 29, 2017

CD Review: New Albums From Singer/Songwriters Ray Wylie Hubbard & A.J. Croce

Texas singer/songwriter Ray Wylie Hubbard released his first album over 40 years ago and has kept a steady flow of new music, continuing with his most recent album "Tell The Devil I'm Gettin' There As Fast As I Can." The album also features guests like Lucinda Williams, Eric Church and Patty Griffin. His new 11-song release begins with the clap-stomp blues of "God Looked Around," which would also sound perfect on a latter-day Johnny Cash album. The folk storytelling of "Dead Thumb King" will have you examining Hubbard's lyrics, while the shuffle rhythm of "Lucifer And The Fallen Angels" shows that he still has swagger in his step.  The stark blues of "Open G" has a classic folk, nostalgic appeal, before guests Eric Church and Lucinda Williams lend a hand on vocals for the country/folk ballad "Tell The Devil I'm Gettin' There As Fast As I Can." The album finishes with the honky-tonk tones of "Old Wolf" and the beautiful, gentle folk duet between Hubbard and Patty Griffin for "In Times Of Cold." To find out more about Ray Wylie Hubbard and his latest release "Tell The Devil I'm Gettin' There As Fast As I Can," please visit raywylie.com.

Famed singer/songwriter A.J. Croce is preparing to release his 10th studio album titled "Just Like Medicine." Son of the famous storyteller Jim Croce, A.J. has had some big shoes to fill and his career has continued to blossom and this latest release showcases the growth in his music since his debut album almost 20 years ago. His new 10-song album begins with the Americana, stomp rhythm of "Gotta Get Outta My Head" as Croce pleads for redemption. Fellow musician Steve Cropper (Booker T & The MG's) lends a hand on the boogie shuffle rhythm of the Leon Russell penned "The Heart That Makes Me Whole." One of the special songs on this new release is the folk/rock gem "Name Of The Game," which was written by Jim Croce shortly before his death and features country star Vince Gill on acoustic guitar. He digs down for the soulful blues of "Move On"  and "The Other Side Of Love," before finishing his new album with the jazzy, piano ballad "I Couldn't Stop" and "The Roads" as A.J. reveals his fears of success. To find out more about A.J. Croce and his latest release "Just Like Medicine," please visit ajcrocemusic.com.

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