Terry Klein – Leave The Light On
What’s good about Terry Klein is that he starts off with a distinctive vocal, sounding like few other artists. The lead-off song to this new CD is “Shimmers and Hums,” — a wonderful introduction to Mr. Klein’s repertoire. He does fall into categories already established but those realms are respective ones. Klein rubs shoulders in style with the late John Prine, Mickey Newbury, Jim Lampos, Townes van Zandt, Guy Clark & voices of that ilk. “Blue Hill Bay,” has a drive reminiscent of Tim Buckley with a Tim Hardin lyrical squeeze. Yeah, I like this stuff.
There are 10 ten bright candles on Leave The Light On (Drops Nov 10-Independent/39:00) that range from upbeat, to poignant & with this, Terry’s 4th CD – it’s a confident showcase though Klein (vocals/acoustic guitar) has said that he wasn’t sure at times what tempo to play them at, whether they were good enough. But Terry has to remember that even Bob Dylan reinvented some of his songs & others developed live. The audience doesn’t know what the songs sound like faster, slower, or more aggressive, they have nothing to compare them to. And for a songwriter, nothing is ever definitive.
This set was wonderfully produced in Nashville by Thomm Jutz (acoustic & electric guitar/harmony vocals) so, Terry needs to relax. Songs are like babies – you give birth to them, but you can’t control what line of work they go into, how successful they’ll become, or how talented they’ll be. Feed them, teach them, then stand back & watch.
Like most LPs, the songs are constructed around the singer-songwriter. The people he knows, his experiences, it’s a self-portrait, a personal record. The song needs to relate to the listener. They must come away with something.
If you sing & people start wiping away tears – that’s a success. If they smile & nod their heads – you win again. It’s a throw of the dice – not every audience reacts in the same spots as other nights. So, you just be yourself – because being yourself is the easiest thing you can do. Terry Klein does all these things & he succeeds.
“A Dollar, Two Quarters & a Dime,” is a superb tune — comes up slow & slinky like a J.J. Cale blues ache but for some reason, I even hear a little of the more serious Roger Miller pen. Whereas “Starting At Zero,” would’ve been either a great Waylon Jennings, George Jones, or Boxcar Willie song. Oh, well…I guess we’ll have to listen to Terry Klein’s version. (Just kidding, just kidding).
Highlights – “Shimmers and Hums,” “Blue Hill Bay,” “This Too Shall Pass,” “Well Enough Alone,” “A Dollar, Two Quarters & a Dime,” “Oh Melissa,” “Sky Blue LeBaron” & “Starting At Zero.”
Musicians – Lynn Williams (drums), Tim Marks (bass), Scotty Sanders (pedal steel guitar) & Tammy Rogers (fiddle).
Color image courtesy of Valerie Fremin. CD @ https://terrykleinmusic.com/about
Enjoy our previous coverage here: REVIEW: Terry Klein Good Luck Take Care