DisClaimer: What The Indies Are Offering

Cerrito

Cerrito

All hail the fine folks at CDX. Not only do these bi-monthly compilation discs keep us up to date on what the major labels are putting out (or aren’t, which seems to be the case lately), each one is also a smorgasbord of what the indies are offering. For me, that means the anticipation of hearing new voices. This week’s column is a sampling from that smorgasbord. Here to remind us that not everything needs to be serious is the durable Cerrito. His novelty tune is just silly enough to win the Disc of the Day prize. I have no idea who North 40 is/are. But among the many unknowns I listened to today, they were my favorites. Give ‘em a DisCovery Award.

DOUG NEWMAN & SOS RENEWAL/Gonna Give You Praise
Writers: Doug Newman; Producer: Robert Metzger; Publisher: Buddy & Billy/Sony-ATV Songs, BMI; Platinum Plus
-The track is slightly sloppy, old-time rock ‘n’ roll. The singer is righteously into it. Retro all the way.

JOE/Final Curtain Call
Writers: Gene Cash; Producer: Allen Cash; Publisher: Divison, BMI; Music Row (CDX)
-The cow is moaning in the barn. Somebody put it out to pasture.

BLACKJACK BILLY/The Booze Cruise
Writers: Noll Billings/Jeff Coplan/Chuck Jones; Producers: Jeff Coplan and Blackjack Billy; Publishers: 3rd Nineteen/Vandermont/City Angel/Ole Red Cape/Roots Three/Ole/No E No D/Big Spaces/Amplified Admin/Poppy Loppy, ASCAP/SOCAN/BMI; TTA (CDX)
-Energetic and merry, if rather melodically challenged.

KARI & BILLY/Play Me a Fiddle Song
Writers: Billy Arnold; Producers: Billy Arnold and Kari Arnold; Publisher: none listed; BMI; Applause (CDX)
-Earnest and well meaning, but thin sounding. Kari, by the way, can barely be heard. Despite the billing, this is essentially a Billy performance.

BURLY CLYDE/Living In America
Writers: Charlie Midnight/Dan Hartman; Producers; Mark Needham and Charlie Midnight; Publishers: Bay Parkway/Round Hill Works, BMI; MAN (CDX)
-That’s right: It’s the 1986 James Brown hit refashioned as a wailing country-rocker. Kinda different. Kinda cool.

CERRITO/Hot Pepper Doll
Writers: Cy Coben; Producers: Felipe De LaRosa, Bartley Pursely and Cerrito; Publisher: Delmore, ASCAP; Checo (CDX)
-This Latin bopper comes complete with staccato horn bursts as it praises the spicy culinary skills of his betrothed. They’ll be wed if his stomach can take the heat. Very cute.

north 40 hey girl heyNORTH 40/Hey Girl Hey
Writers: Paige Logan/Amber Rose; Producers: Leigh Reynolds and Mills Logan; Publisher: Molly Jack, BMI; Rhymetown (CDX)
-The lead singer has an attractively smokey, dramatic delivery, and she struts her way through this with moxie to spare. This is her night to rock.

JAY JOLLEY/God Save Us All From Religion
Writers: Doug Johnson, Charlie Daniels and Kim Williams; Producer: Chuck Alkazian; Publishers: Sony ATV Cross Keys/Triple Cross/Mike Curb/Sweet Radical/Wooley Swamp, BMI/ASCAP; Double J (CDX)
-“We’ve got Jews and Muslims and ten thousand flavors of Christians,” ponders the man at the bar while he watches a hypocrite preacher on TV. “We kill in God’s name.” Which leads to the title phrase.

JARED BLAKE/Countrified
Writers: Jared Blake, Skidd Mills, Carl Bell; Producer: Skidd Mills; Publishers: Hey Y’all Watch This/Skiddoo/Lucky Diamond, BMI; Skiddco (CDX)
-She’s a city sophisticate, but he’s going to change her by exposing her to honky-tonkin,’ drinking and brawling. Guess what? It works. The screaming guitar and his drawling, baritone, Southern-rock delivery must have done the trick.

LOGAN TUDEEN/Circles
Writers: Logan Tudeen/Kent Wells; Producer: Kent Wells; Publishers: Logan Tudeen/Creek Valley; BMI/ASCAP; Go Time (CDX)
-The track has a moody, bluesy tone. She has a penetrating voice, yet it sounds like she is trying a little too hard. Forceful, but not something I’d listen to again.

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Robert K. Oermann is a longtime contributor to MusicRow. He is a respected music critic, author and historian.

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