Cason’s Latest LP Is A Wonderful Musical Love Letter To Music’s Golden Age

Courtesy:  Plowboy Records

Courtesy: Plowboy Records

Vinyl lovers across the country celebrated a very special day Wednesday.  No, not Record Store Day.  Though, that’s not too far off of the mark.  No, yesterday vinyl lovers across the country celebrated what is known as National Vinyl Day.  And while National Vinyl Day has come and gone, this critic still felt it appropriate to “celebrate” properly.  And what better way than to examine veteran singer/songwiter Buzz Cason’s new album Record Machine.  The follow-up to Cason’s 2014 album Troubador Heart, Record Machine proves to be a rather aptly titled album.  That is thanks in large part to the general sound of the songs that make up this record.  The addition of Cason’s lyrics to the album’s musical content shows even more why Record Machine is such a wisely named album.  The combination of both elements together makes Record Machine one of the best of this year’s field of new country/americana/folk albums.

Buzz Cason’s latest full-length studio recording is one of the best of this year’s field of new country/americana/folk albums.  That is thanks in large part to the combination of the album’s musical and lyrical content throughout the course of its thirty-seven minute run time.  This is made clear right from the album’s opener/title track.  The song’s laid back country western style sound coupled with Cason’s almost Dylan-esque vocal delivery style will instantly grab listeners.  The blatant throw back to music’s golden era stylistically and musically connects perfectly to the album’s title.  When partnered with the song’s lyrical content, the presentation in whole shows quite well within itself just how well Cason has succeeded in his goal of taking listeners back and showing them what once made music in whole great–simple music and equally simple (and understandable) lyrics.  Speaking of the song’s lyrical content, he takes listeners back to a simpler time as he sings the praises of the record machine (record player).  He sings, “When I was five/Not long on the scene/I asked my daddy/What’s that thing/He said the thing in the corner/Son, you’re pointin’ at the record machine/He dropped the needle on that vinyl/And right away/The big band record started to play/I’ve been in love with music/Ever since that day.”  From here he goes on through the song’s chorus before outlining just how varied his musical tastes are and even directly notes the love he has for his dad’s record player as he sings, “I still got that Victrola/I keep it nice and clean/My friends say that’s the nicest one they’ve ever seen/Now, when my kids ask what it is I say/Children, that’s a record machine/I got Tommy Dorsey records/Sinatra and Bing/I got rock and roll/R&B and everything between/But nothing sounds better than the King on my record machine.”  It’s rare for any musician or performer today to have such a wide swath of musical influences; Not to mention that they are such respected, timeless influences.  The very mention of those influences alongside the song’s equally classic musical content makes the song even more of an impressive homage to music’s golden age.  It makes even clearer why the song was chosen to open Record Machine and in itself why this album is well worth the listen.

Record Machine’s opener/title track is in itself a wholly clear example of why this record is well worth the listen and why it is one of the best of this year’s field of new country/americana/folk records.  It is just one example of what makes Record Machine such an impressive new release from Cason, too.  ‘Don’t Worry Mama,’ the album’s second track, is another example of what makes this album a modern throwback hit.  Just as with the album’s opener/title track, this song’s musical content lies at the center of its enjoyment.  Musically speaking listeners will enjoy the song’s hybrid bluesy/country sound.  Even more interesting, Cason switches up his vocal delivery style here sounding still somewhat like Bob Dylan but adding in a touch of Hank III interestingly enough.  That hybrid sound set alongside the song’s musical content creates a musical picture that while different from the album’s opener/title track, is just as enjoyable.  Its difference from the album’s opener actually plays into its enjoyment as does the song’s lyrical content.  The lyrical content does so much to accent the song’s bluesy musical approach.  That is made evident as Cason sings, “Well I have my honey/Got my car/Got a little money and a old guitar/There ain’t much that I’m a be leavin’ behind/Don’t worry momma/Your boy’s gonna be fine/I’ll get a little job as soon as I’m able/My sweet thing/She can wait on tables/I’ll play for tips/And we can howl at the moon/Sorry mamma/But I won’t be home real soon.”  Looking at this, Cason is throwing back just as much in this case, too.  There is almost no one that sings such classic style lyrics today even in the blues community.  That being the case, it makes this song even more of a perfect fit for Record Machine and even more proof of why Record Machine is in whole such an enjoyable record for listeners.

Both ‘Record Machine’ and ‘Don’t Worry Mama’ are clear examples of what makes Buzz Cason’s new LP enjoyable for anyone wanting to take a trip back to the music industry’s golden age.  Both songs throw back wonderfully to that era.  At the same time, both songs stand out from one another so starkly in terms of their musical and lyrical content.  Taking all of that into consideration both songs show clearly in their own way why Record Machine is one of the best of this year’s field of new country/americana/folk records.    Of course they are not the only examples of what makes this record one of the most standout collections within the worlds of country, americana, and folk.  ‘Overload,’ which comes late in the album’s sequence, is one more example of what makes Record Machine such a surprisingly enjoyable record.  The song’s musical content exhibits clear influences from the likes of both Eagles and Creedence Clearwater while the seeming commentary contained in the song’s lyrical content presents its own sensibility within the composition.  That sensibility is put on display as he sings, “Can it be/I’ve done too much/Or maybe not enough/And I don’t have to hit the lottery to win/Can it be/The world’s gone bad/Or is it just something I had/That made me want to start all over again/Look at me/All alone/Woring my fingers to the bone/I sit back thinking ’bout livin’ with this overload/And did you ever take a peek/And take the time to sit with me/So you can feel the overload.” One would think that considering such deep content, the song would have a different feel than it does, musically speaking. But that isn’t the case. The combination of such unsuspecting musical content with equally deep and thoughtful lyrics makes clear why this song is yet another impressive addition to Cason’s new record. Together with the previously noted songs and those not directly noted here, the whole of Record Machine proves to be one of Cason’s most memorable albums to date and once again, one of the best of this year’s field of country, americana, and folk both within themselves and collectively.

Whether or not listeners are familiar with Buzz Cason’s decades-long body of work, one listen to his new album Record Machine will convince every listener that this record is one of his best works to date. They will also agree that it is one of the best of this year’s field of new country, americana, and folk albums both in themselves and collectively. That is thanks to musical and lyrical content together that will take listeners back to the days when record machines (players) were the main outlet for recorded music. The album may be new to this year’s crop of new releases. But it sounds and feels just like it came from music’s greatest eras. That proves true from beginning to end. Record Machine is available now in stores and online. More information on Record Machine is available online now along with the latest news from Buzz himself at:

 

Website: http://www.buzzcason.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/buzzcasonmusic

Twitter: http://twitter.com/BuzzCason

 

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Cason’s Latest LP Has Plenty Of “Heart”

Courtesy:  Plowboy Records

Courtesy: Plowboy Records

Singer/Songwriter Buzz Cason has spent some six decades making music. He started his career by starting the very first rock and roll band in Nashville, Tennessee. He has founded his own recording studio where greats such as Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, and The Doobie Brothers have recorded hit songs among many other major names. He has also spent much of his career making his own music. He has continued making his own music up to this year. As a matter of fact, Cason released his latest record, Troubadour Heart earlier this year. The album is quite aptly titled considering Cason’s storied career. And for those audiences that might not be so familiar with Cason’s body of work, Troubadour Heart serves as quite the first impression, too. The album exhibits quite the number of influences. The laid back bluesy ‘Goin’ Back To Alabama’ presents an influence from the likes of Eric Clapton, Taj Mahal, and Robert Johnson. This applies both musically and lyrically. And then there’s the southern rock styling of ‘Something I Can Dance To.’ This song shows Cason’s Nashville roots and his rock leanings at the same time. Troubadour Heart’s penultimate tune ‘Cowboys & Indians’ exhibits more of Cason’s southern rock influences. Audiences more familiar with the history of modern rock will hear tinges of Eagles and even George Thorogood to a slightly lesser extent. There are also hints of The Grateful Dead and Dire Straits peppered throughout the course of Cason’s latest release. All of these influences together make Troubadour Heart one of 2014’s more interesting new records.

Troubadour Heart is one of this year’s more interesting records. That’s because of the range of influences exhibited throughout the course of the album’s fifteen total tracks. One prime example of this comes in the laid back bluesy ‘Goin’ Back To Alabama.’ The song—the album’s only blues-influenced piece—conjures thoughts of Eric Clapton, Taj Mahal, and even Robert Johnson thanks both to its music and lyrics. Cason sings of a subject reminiscing of his younger days in Alabama. He sings, “When my world/Comes unraveled/I know it’s time/For me to travel/Going ‘round the bend/Gettin’ in that Dixieland.” He goes on in the song’s chorus to sing in semi-celebratory fashion about going back to Alabama. The most interesting aspect of this song is that not only does it exhibit classic blues influence, but that guest singer Dan Penn actually sounds just like Eric Clapton. If one were to hear this song without knowing that it was Penn backing Cason here, one would swear that one was hearing Eric Clapton. The similarity between the pair’s vocals is incredible. That and the song’s easygoing lyrics and music show just why ‘Going’ to Alabama’ is such a solid example of what makes Troubadour Heart such an interesting listen.

‘Goin’ Back To Alabama’ is an excellent example of the diversity of Cason’s talent on his latest record. It is just one example of that talent, too. Another equally impressive example of that diversity is in the more up-tempo southern rock tinged song ‘Something I Can Dance To.’ It clearly reflects Cason’s early days growing up in Nashville with its sound. That up-tempo sound and the song’s lyrics—which are slightly sexually charged in their own right—make this song a perfect fit for so many country-western style bars and clubs. The energy exuded by this piece will have listeners up and dancing in no time regardless of whether or not there’s a formal dance floor.

‘Cowboys & Indians’ is the penultimate track included in Troubadour Heart’s fifteen total tracks. It is also one more fitting example of the diversity of music presented on this record. This song presents a pretty obvious country-western influence as Cason sings about a Romeo and Juliet style story. Cason’s story here presents the love story of a Native American woman falling in love with a seemingly White male. Despite the fact that one’s parents doesn’t approve of the other, the couple doesn’t let that stop them. They end up happily ever after and having their own family together. It’s a fun story and an equally fun final blast from Cason before he gently closes out the album with the aptly titled beachy tune ‘Pacific Blue.’ That final song is a fitting closer as it is one more song showing the pure vastness of Cason’s talent and influences. Having taken in this song and those mentioned before it, listeners will agree once more that Troubadour Heart is without a doubt one of the year’s most intriguing records.

Troubadour Heart is available now in stores and online. It can be downloaded via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HGTNKAK/ref=s9_simh_gw_p15_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=1RG9YQMJV0C4KG1XBKVB&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=1688200382&pf_rd_i=507846. His new album can also be purchased at any of his upcoming live shows. Cason is scheduled to perform live Wednesday, Jun e18th in Okoboji, IA. He also has a pair of shows scheduled in Nashville and one in Lincolnton, North Carolina. That concert is scheduled for Saturday, August 16th. Audiences can get a complete list of Buzz Cason’s live events and news online at http://www.facebook.com/buzzcasonmusic, http://www.buzzcason.com, and http://twitter.com/buzzcason. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.