Evidence of a Musical Powerhouse!
Sounding Rick’s release “Evidence” is a two-CD, 32-song limited edition two-hour ride through the mind of a musical General Motors!
Exhibit One (disc one) consists of 17 tracks Rick recorded with Scott White on drums and longtime cohort Greg Roth on bass. There is a real energy and freshness to this never before released material, which was tracked on analog tape.
The first cut “In the City” is a funk/jazz send up about Rick’s life in Center City Philadelphia full of hustlers and homeless people. “It Ain’t Real” deals with the life of a migrant family from south of the border who finds that being an illegal alien in El Norte’ is not all it was cracked up to be. “Broke Down” is about a modern-day Bonnie and Clyde. “1st Base” is a tight Texas blues/ funk song that is not about baseball. Inspired by the great Frank Zappa, “Laughing All The Way to the Bank” discusses the life of a US Congressman who is more concerned with himself than his job. The rocker “Nobody Loves You Like I Do” is self-explanatory. “Our Old House” is a sentimental look at a rental Rick used to live in. One of my favorites is the spacey and ambient “The Leaves” which talks about the day to day life of the community in the sky (birds, bees and leaves). In fact, “the Birds and the Bees all honk their horns as they pass by”! Cool song. The next track, “Delay” is a hypnotic song with a feel reminiscent of the 90’s. According to Rick, “Running Late” is about most musician’s unique ability to show up late to gigs and rehearsals. “Sweet Memories” is a middle of the road rock ballad that Rick wrote for another artist. Have you ever had a lover lie to you? Ever feel the pain of knowing your ex is on a date and telling lies to your replacement? That’s what “White Lies” is about. Visions of a rusted car on blocks in the yard, a broken heart and too much time is the picture “Roxy” paints. Rick said that he likes the way Robyn Hitchcock writes "colorful nonsense lyrics" and that was his inspiration for “Burton’s Baby”. It is free association with nice chord changes and a catchy hook. “Get Out of My Way”is a song about the morning commute. Back in the 80’s, Rick and Portable People played a college bar in Indiana, PA called the Phone Booth. “Rockin’ at the Kitty” is about his experience playing that bar. I wonder why he didn’t call it Rockin’ at the Phone Booth”? Just because someone puts on a tie doesn’t make them a good person. On jobs around the world there is someone who wants to walk out the door and start over, “VP of Insecurity” is for that someone.
Exhibit Two (disc two) is named after Rick’s 75 Stratocaster, called Long Neck Jimmy (also the name of his band that he recorded these 15 tracks with). This disc contains songs that were recorded using digital audiotape (ADAT) so there is crispness to each cut.
Again, Rick recruited Greg Roth on bass with Scott Fisher (not White)on drums.
“Long Time Ago” is a high-energy rocker, which reminds me of Social Distortion. You can hear the Todd Rundgren/Utopia influence on “Results”. This song is very progressive and cool too! “Black Hole” has catchy lyrics. Is it about life or space? You decide… “Patiently” is a great ballad that should be a hit. Rick wrote “Graveyard Shift” about a fictional character that works at a 7/11 type store from 11 till 7. This poor guy gets to watch customers walk in as they buy cigarettes and beer. He sees couples coming in on dates to buy gas. All he can do is stand there embarrassed in his double knit smock knowing that he is going to be great some day. Two states from here (Florida) is “Mississippi”, a song about forbidden love. Rick’s grandparents had a farm in Indiana where he would spend summers as a kid. “The Country” is about the smell of grass, the sound of the screen door spring, the beauty of the woods and the taste of the best cooking a kid could ever want. One of the coolest (and surprising) songs on this CD is “Queen of Soul”! This rap song is about Aretha Franklin and hamburger hell and how one listener couldn’t stop to fill up his gas tank until “Respect” was over on the radio. Funny! “Dianne” is a song with a tight verse and great chorus. Another GREAT song is “Why Does The Sun Refuse To Shine”. This blues song bleeds passion and heartfelt angst. Rick’s voice is astounding on this one! “Try to Understand” deals with a bad marriage, mental illness and a fictional story pulled from the headlines. The character’s wife is in the wall? If you are over 30, you remember the prehistoric 45-rpm single and the name given to the other side, “B-Side”. 35, single and living at home are elements in this story. Nerds get “Lonely” too. “Atlanta” is a cool town and so is the song. Because a CD will only hold 70 minutes of music, “Lightning Strikes” landed on disc two. This deep song is from the WAH sessions.
So, there you have it! This CD set will keep you occupied and entertained for years to come! From rockers to ballads to blues to funk to jazz influenced smoothness, "Evidence has something for anyone & everyone! This is a must-have record for any Sounding Rick fan!
Underground Review 2006