Hi, here's a review of Randy Waller's debut album which hit the streets on
March 30th. It's also the first release on Len Holsclaw's new Lendel Records
RANDY WALLER � Self-Titled
Lendel Records LR-5401
9188 James Madison Hwy., Warrenton, VA. 20186
EMAIL: LendelA [at] aol.com
Playing Time � 48:57
Lendel Records is a new label created in 2003 to promote and serve the
clients of Len Holsclaw�s Lendel Agency, in business since l971, which was
the sole management and booking agency for The Country Gentlemen from
1971-1998. The label�s first album release showcases Charlie Waller�s son,
Randy, who was born in 1959 and grew up with the bluegrass music of his
father. In 1963, Charlie made a promise to one day give his 1937 Martin D-28
guitar to his son. After Randy�s graduation, he embarked on a solo career as
a country musician and guitar teacher. It was on Christmas in 2002 that his
father�s guitar was passed on to the next generation. Randy�s original song,
�Daddy�s Old Guitar,� tells the story.
With this debut release, Randy returns to his bluegrass roots for the
singer, songwriter and instrumentalist who is currently working with his
father (since 2003) as a member of The Country Gentlemen. A short time after
he started appearing with the group, fans started asking for an album that
documents his impressive rendition of �Old Rugged Cross.� Waller penned some
originals for the project including �The Vision,� �Little Red Shoes,� and
�Rough and Ready.� These three numbers demonstrate Waller�s unique ability
to successfully pen first-rate songs within the bluegrass gospel, western
swing, and country genres.
Covers include Carl Jackson�s �Love�s Tombstone� and �Blue, Blue Morning�
and �A Sad Song Don�t Care Whose Heart it Breaks.� and songs that were
recorded by the Marshall Tucker Band (�This Ol� Cowboy�) and Bonnie Raitt
(�Give It Up or Let Me Go�). �This Ol� Cowboy� has a nice beat and catchy
little riff. Randy�s resonator guitar is a featured instrument on �The
Ballad of Curtis Loew,� a story of a young boy�s friendship and respect for
an old black dobro master who played the blues. Interestingly, that song
also recently appeared on Larry Cordle�s �Lonesome Skynyrd Time� project.
The accompanists include a number of present and former Country Gentlemen.
Jimmy Gaudreau�s mandolin and mandola are always a treat to hear. Eddie and
Martha Adcock sing beautiful vocal harmonies. A friend from Randy�s teenage
years, Mike Moore, was enlisted to play bass. Sammy Shelor (Lonesome River
Band) picks the five-string banjo, and well-known Nashville session fiddler
Aubrey Haynie offers some hot licks and fills. Tim Austin engineered the
Randy Waller certainly doesn�t sing with a high lonesome bluegrass sound.
Instead, his full baritone gives a very smooth delivery that is equally
comfortable with country, gospel, bluegrass and blues music. Randy�s diverse
instrumental and vocal abilities will open many doors for him. Closer to
acoustic country than hard-driving bluegrass, Randy Waller�s sound is very
relaxed and enjoyable. His voice even reminds me, at times, of a young Merle
Haggard. That�s the main reason why I really like this project. (Joe Ross)
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