Randy Thompson "that's not me"

     Singer Songwriter Randy Thompson writes his material with a unique outlook. Rather than using a formula or crafting a song around a concept, Randy writes his songs as a musical diary of that he is thinking through. This adds an uncanny realism to his songs, lyrics and the song's musical phrasing.  He cites his influences as Hank Williams, Waylon Jennings, Joe Ely, and Steve Young. Also mentioned is friend and musical mentor, John Jackson, who was a well recognized blues singer and guitarist in the Washington, DC area. As a youngster he played with and learned from John.
     Randy's newest disc [his third release] is a unique collection of songs ranging from rock influenced to folk and country. He has called upon some well heeled sidemen who contributed to this body of work by dialing in exactly on Randy's accompaniment needs without ever getting in the way of the tunes. Randy provides vocals, harmony, acoustic and electric guitars. Garrick Alden plays guitar, bass, mandolin, and drum tracks. Rick West adds guitar, bass, piano, drum tracks, and mandolin. Pete Kennedy plays guitar, bongos, snare and mandolin. Rickie Simpkins adds fiddle. Mike Aldridge plays the steel guitar. Maura Kennedy sings harmony vocals and Andy Hamburger plays a track of drums.
     The opening song
"The Whole World" suggests that the whole world shares in each of emotions he experiences. It is short and to the point. It is laced with fuzz bass creating a deep backdrop for the acoustic guitar riding on top.
"Sound Of The Rain" is a march-beat rocker with great sounding guitars ranging from acoustic twang to driving electric power chords and counter beat rhythm. Randy's lyrics punctuate the musical backdrop with his perfectly graveled almost but not quite country voice. Garrick plays a spirited guitar solo. This song has radio airplay written all over it! DJ's take notice!
     The emotionless converse of the lyrics in
"That's Not Me" creates a feeling that everyone has experienced at some point in life. The guitar, piano, mandolin, bass, harmony, bass, drums and vocals comprise a precise machine of sound. Each is an exact participant in the structure of the song likened to where they are each an individual string on a perfectly strummed guitar. I especially enjoyed this tune from the perspective of a musician.
     Randy calls out, "Hey baby, when I need you and you're not ever there" to kick off the tune
"The Loving Shown". This is nice country rocker that rolls along with guitars and mandolin driving the rhythm. The mandolin provides a nice bluegrass twist to the tune. Garrick provides some great turnarounds on the guitar reminiscent of fills I have enjoyed by both Lindsey Buckingham and Roger McGuinn.
"Dance Until Dawn"  is a country rocker. It features Randy playing a tasty lead guitar solo as well as singing great lyrics. Garrick Alden provides great mandolin accents throughout.

     The slower and wistful "If Love Is What You Want" is a beautiful love song. It is accented by Mike Aldrige's steel guitar, the finger picked nylon string guitar work by Rick West and the fiddle accents by Rickie Simpkins. 
"Unknown Zone" warns the listener to be careful to not go alone at night to Junction Town in the deep woods of Virginia where the phantom Calvary of Mosby and his band are riding hard into the wind. Guitar chords burst into beat--this sturdy rocker features some great guitar work and a solid bass part.

     "If That Wasn't Love" plays out a break-up between lovers. They both are trying to justify their parting in the words of the song. This listener friendly country rocker features clever turn-a-round's on guitar and steel along with brilliant interplay on solos.
     The sad
"Only One Way" is a slow country rocker about a head-hanging walk away from love. The solo leads by Garrick are highly effective to the song. Tremolo laden chunky guitar fills the center of the song--nice!
      Randy's new work is a must-have CD for any country rock fan and it crosses over far enough to please many rock listeners. Many of the artists who performed also help produce the CD. Their careful mixes add to the tasty result in  the released music. Randy's web site is at www.randythompson.net and you can hear some samples of the new CD as well as read more about this terrific performer. You can order your own copy on his site as well as copies of previous work. Listen and enjoy! ~ Steve Ekblad audiogrid.com

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