Crosby Tyler

REVIEW: Crosby Tyler – Don’t Call the Law On Me!


Crosby Tyler – Don’t Call the Law On Me!

A 3-decade veteran of Americana with genuine skills & melody Crosby Tyler gently skims the edge of outlaw country without getting too gritty on his self-produced 10-cut Don’t Call the Law On Me! (Drops Feb 17-Bohemia Records).

Tyler (acoustic guitar/vocals) has a sturdy raw vocal approach. Though the songs aren’t bursting with clever lines the tunes are contemporary without being too formulaic mainstream. This gives Mr. Crosby’s songs a little more value added. “Trucker On the Road,” is typical stuff but the J.J. Cale vocal inflection & tone is infectious. Crosby is full of zeal despite the tune’s repetition.

So, if Tyler’s intent is to take the outlaw notion of country a little more commercial he’s succeeded. There isn’t much to criticize since there’s a solid audience for this kind of country. I would’ve preferred a voice like this to explore more prickly subjects because his voice warrants it. More Townes van Zandt & less George Jones cum Roger Miller. A pinch more Kris Kristofferson & less Johnny Horton.


That said, Crosby Tyler still manages to provide a quality set with a tight band & solid-state music with good arrangements. With great backup singing towards the coda “18 Wheels of Steel,” is more cohesive, aggressive & even though it’s another country truck song it takes a page from a songbook that included Tommy Faile’s 1967 Red Sovine song “Big Joe & Phantom 309.” That’s where Crosby Tyler should be. A little more haunting, edgier & not necessarily creepy but adding some heavy cream to an already tasty showcase.

Crosby sends the puck up the circus pole with both “Born a Bad Boy,” & “Bikers Hippies & Honky-Tonkin’ Cowboys.” Brawny well-oiled tales with penetrating urgency. Excellent lyrics & nothing about these pieces is sugary commercial fare. They’re highly polished melodies with stellar musicianship. When you hear songs George Jones could’ve done & Johnny Cash too – those are winners.

Crosby Tyler

“Stop Being An Ol’ Redneck,” & “Peace, Love & Beer,” both lean toward novelty. But each has a message that’s formidable. The choice of lyrics is clever but this slides into retro country – not what today’s country radio would focus on. However, the vocals are sincere & that has to count for something. These are not meant to be comedic – they’re bruised humorous ballads.

As a collection of country-oriented songs, this is a fine effort. It’s more traditionalist than country pop but it’s instinctively good & well-played.

Musicians – Jeff Turmes (bass), Dale Daniel (drums), Mike Khalil (lead guitar/pedal steel guitar), Aubrey Richmond (fiddle/backup vocals) & Kimbra West (backup vocals).

Highlights – “Don’t Call the Law On Me!” “Trucker On the Road,” “18 Wheels of Steel,” “Born a Bad Boy,” “Bikers Hippies & Honky-Tonkin’ Cowboys” & “Us Black Sheep Ain’t Like the Others.”

Silly cartoon CD art doesn’t help sell music this good. Tinted image courtesy of Crosby’s website (would’ve been better album art). The 37-minute CD @


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