Tim Brummett – Singles Review
Salute to this man right here…Tim Brummett is “68 and giving it a go again.” Inspiring really. For those of you out there of a similar age, take a page outta Tim’s book here at recognize it’s never too late to start, or to keep it goin’ for that matter…whatever the case may be, keep makin’ that music as much as you can for as long as you can as far as I’m concerned. People like Brummett have true grit & real spirit.
In amongst the notes I’ve got here with Tim’s music is a quote that reads: “I truly believe in these five songs. And I believe a guy pushing 70 can have success.” This caught my attention again after I had a chance to have a healthy spin through the set of five singles online & really had me considering what he’d said there. First of all…the man’s got every right to believe in these five songs, they’re genuinely all really well-played & well-written…you really can’t ask for more than that. Secondly – see the last answer – as in…isn’t that already success? I don’t wanna start spittin’ philosophy & all that stuff here, but folks…have a listen to Tim Brummett, and ask yourself that very question – what defines success? Is it the fame & the fortune & all that glitters is always gold stuff – or is it something more than that? As far as just about every single one of you on earth here have ever told me (no kidding, it’s gotta be a very real 99.9%) – if you can move ONE person, one heart, one mind, one LIVING SOUL with your music, then ‘it’s all been worth it’ and that’s always what real success has sounded like to me. Doesn’t mean you can’t get yourselves paid in the process…just stay true to who you are & your own definition of success.
So hats off to this guy…because in my world, he’s already as successful as successful can be.
If you need any further convincing of what I’m claimin’ to ya here, help yourself to “Life Through Bourbon And Ice” and that should do ya nicely – feel free to make it a double. If you wanna pick on the guy for not recreating the wheel, have at it hoss…I’ve said a million times on our pages that ain’t what music is always about. Creating a song you can stand behind, believe in, and be proud of in knowing you gave it everything you could give it – now there’s something that’s at the very least, equally special. What he’s got here in my opinion is a great combination of Blues/Country, with humble perspective and a steadfast performance that’ll instantly prove to anyone listening, that at sixty-eight, Tim’s got much more in the tank than most would be blessed to have – he sounds excellent in how he sings this first cut I’ve got here in review. “Life Through Bourbon And Ice” is pretty much bulletproof when it comes to the writing itself; and while it may draw upon several standards from Blues riffs & rhythms we’re somewhat always familiar with in this style, you can’t argue with results when you can hear’em clear as day. It can be extremely tough to know who’s genuine out there in the world when they’re listening & writing about music…all you can ever really do is take the general consensus to be as close to what might be true. As far as I’ve heard, the response to Brummett’s music has been largely positive – to me, I hear a song like “Life Through Bourbon And Ice” and fully get why that would be. A good tune, is a good tune.
I’d more readily concede that “Jayme’s Song” is probably a little less suited to my own personal taste in comparison to what I had experienced in the first track I’d listened to…but ultimately, it’s still a really well-played & well-written tune, with a wealth of great musicianship on display & heartfelt vocals in the mix. With the sliding guitars in this tune, as much as I might enjoy’em, in tandem with the playful strum of the rhythm guitar, in tandem it does give this track what I’d consider to be a very distinct flavor when presented in this particular way it’s played…which can pretty much only be described as the ‘aloha effect.’ No, that’s not a real thing and don’t bother Googling that – I’m coining that phrase right here before your very eyes…but think of it this way…in terms of your ears & music, you knew exactly what I meant when it comes to what you might find sound-wise didn’t ya? Now…being real with ya, you can trace this type of approach to hybrid-Country all the way back to Elvis at the very least & likely even beyond…so make no mistake, what Tim’s actually got here is very much tried, tested & true – and with respect to the tropically-flavored style & sound he’s looking to create in this particular single, you’ve gotta acknowledge that he’s pretty much bang-on with “Jayme’s Song.” Is it a sweet song? You bet. No complaints here when it comes to sentiment or songwriting…love songs come in all forms and they’re always a tough thing to resist or find a desire to rail against…the beauty in Tim’s words makes it pretty easy to surrender willingly to “Jayme’s Song.” It’s not my favorite in the set, but I ain’t knockin’ it either.
Here’s how you can tell Tim knows what he wants in the direction of his sound & songwriting…those same style of guitars, be it sliding, be it steel or whatever, show up once more in the single I heard right afterwards called “Play Me The Waltz Of The Angels” – and this whole track ended up being completely different in the overall results. No ‘aloha effect’ here at all really, just good ol’ down-to-earth humble songwriting with a real classic sound, and a genuine waltz, just as the title implies. Here’s what I can tell ya for sure, unequivocally – the words Tim has penned to this tune literally blew my mind. If you think you’ve heard bittersweet love-songs before in your life, I almost don’t even know what else to tell ya other than to brace yourself, because you might not have heard one that cuts to the quick like this track does. Seriously! When I first heard it, I think my reaction was probably much like anyone’s would be – that’s a sweet sound & an endearing tune…but then you dig into these words, and it’s as heartbreaking as heartbreaking could ever be, especially if you’ve ever loved & lost. Remarkably sweet still even despite this & thanks to the sentiment expressed through the main hook in the chorus, but yeah man, devastatingly sad too! Tim’s working with a theme of playing for a crowd and spotting one particular dude that looked like he could use a song for the soul…and we essentially come to find he’s alone without his long lost love, and wishing for a song that’ll bring her back, if only just in his mind while he closes his eyes & listens to music. Are you kidding me Brummett? I practically teared-up just writing that last sentence…it’s such an extraordinarily beautiful perspective, and one that fully confirms that bold connection we feel in between life, love, and music, in addition to revealing its sensory memories. If we’re talking sound-wise & style & all that, sure, you’ll find I probably like the track to follow a bit more and it’d be my ultimate highlight in that regard…but if we’re talking about lyrics and we’re talking about songwriting…well folks…I don’t know what else to tell ya other than this is one truly spectacular highlight of the authenticity in his storyteller-style, and a prime example of how to tell a tale with heart.
But yes…for myself personally, “Let’s Go Out Dancing” was right where I’m at – I’m in love with this tune, 100%. The sweetness & sincerity here is absolutely spectacular…it’s like Tim found his way to the heart of the golden-era of music on this song & is ready to twist the night away – still, at sixty-freakin-eight! I’ll be lucky enough just to be able to get outta bed or type a single sentence by the time I reach his age the way I see it…this man gives me genuine hope, and proves that so many of our best years are the latter ones we live. He takes this whole classic vibe all the way back to The Penguins-era, perfectly nailing that similar “Earth Angel” type sweetness that’s completely timeless & never gets old. My main & only question here is – is that really Tim singing this whole cut? If it IS…then somebody give this man some bonus points & a gold-star will ya? Because those low tones of the vocals are LOWER than LOW, packed with bass that even modern-day rappers would be jealous of – and if that’s Tim, which I’d honestly assume it IS, based on what I’m hearing…I mean, the man’s got RANGE. I might not know the limits of his high-notes, but I can’t imagine he could go any lower than the notes he’ll sing for you on “Let’s Go Out Dancing” pre-chorus, that’s for sure…and where he sits comfortably in the mid-range of his vocals for the majority of the melody of this tune has all the right sweetness & sincerity you wanna hear in a song of this style. Nothing not to love about this track as far as I’m concerned. Tim! You ol’ honey-dripper you! The man is as charming as charming can be in his lead through his verses, and the backup vocals he’s got doo-woppin’ are ESSENTIAL…between these elements and the inherently sweet tones comin’ outta the guitars, I could never decide just what I liked or loved more…this cut has it all. I LOVE the fact that Brummett is more than willing to acknowledge his age on this & in some of these other tunes as well…so many out there would try to disguise what he’s so clearly embracing & outright CELEBRATING, as he should be! One thing is crystal clear…if he can jam a song this smooth, our main hero of the story here has still got the MOVES, and he certainly still knows how to have a good time.
In knowing even just a fraction, a sliver, a tiny PIECE of Tim’s tale overall – listening to “The Music Just Played On” ended up being one of the most inspired tunes I’ve heard so far this year, no lie. Not only is it just as exceptional quality-wise from production to performance as the rest has been along the way, but in terms of his own tale, who Tim is, what he’s been through, what’s made him the artist he IS now and what drives him to do what he’s doing now & rockin’ out at sixty-eight…I mean, it’s just stellar songwriting, and that’s the facts Jack. “The Music Just Played On” becomes a true statement tune and a powerful moment to experience if I’m being real honest with ya…you can hear the conviction in the way Tim sings his words, and we’re all left without a single doubt that every last one of’em comes from a very real place inside him. In terms of overall accessibility, this is also his most current & relevant sound in relation to what’s happening out there in the scene right now. Somewhere between the modern-day Country vibes with a hint of The Boss in the style of songwriting here – this is a suit that seems to fit Tim spectacularly well – and I’d be mighty inclined to be lookin’ at this cut to put out there as the ultimate selection of these five here as the single-of-singles & real gateway into his music & what he’s all about. “The Music Just Played On” directly ties into Brummett’s age & personal story without an ounce of fear or hesitation, and shines a brilliant light on the story of the man behind the music, while also giving the lyricism real flair and insightful imagery to support the details. “Big houses and fancy cars won’t add up to an old guitar” is just one of many stunning lines you’ll find within this last single released by Tim so far this year – and he’s certainly right about that.
If you’ve been paying close attention to this story here folks, then therein lies your answer as well. Brummett’s fully aware & dialed into what he knows real success is…and in hearing how this set of five have come out sounding so inspired, so well-written, so strongly performed…he knows he’s achieved it. The consensus coming back on Tim’s tunes is as positive as it is, because he’s got tunes that sincerely connect – I’ve got all the time in the world for great songwriting and inspired passion like Brummett has – let’s be real here, he’s got more desire to make music right here, right now, than most find in a career. He can take solace in the fact that the accolades he’s receiving are real, justified, and true – the reality is, Tim Brummett is really good at what he does, and I’d imagine any set of ears out there would agree.
Listen to music by Tim Brummett at Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/tim-brummett-2
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