ALL IN Release Events Planned For Atlanta on August 22
Back when Ted Nugent and Meatloaf were at the tail end of their pivotal career prime, Lefty Williams was deep into sifting through the breadth of music in dingy record stores and stockpiling vinyl while practicing his guitar chops. He certainly felt a little enamored by the likes of the Allman Brothers Band, and appreciated Joe Perry’s momentum and charm that he brought to Aerosmith.
Lefty Williams is a virtuoso on the guitar- a rambling Georgian-styled master constructor of deeply textured guitar instrumental passages and soulful big rock this way of Jeff Beck’s “Plyth” or Boston’s “More Than a Feeling.”
The artist’s new record, All In, is available online to stream on the official website ahead of the street release. It seems to be an ideal continuation of that intricate Deep South production. Williams’s big voice echoes powerfully in “Coming Apart” and the album’s breakneck lead, “Crescent” is the perfect showstopper. A nicely textured tune that pits lyrics of Mardi Gras partying fun against high mixed orchestration. The guitar is still the main man, but it is so well accompanied by other instruments, making Lefty Williams not just a great guitarist but a great composer.
But Lefty Williams always keeps things centered on the music, even when the pop stuff starts to surface to the, um, surface. He seems to want to have a good time, and he and his band is early enough in their career to make big fun rock and roll without a single ounce of irony. Because when Bob Dylan and ZZ Top and Journey and Cheap Trick are all phoning it in on the fourth+ decade of their career, Lefty Williams has enough credibility and respect for the good old fashioned side of things to see that this Southern twang rock still has a little fuel in it. He can give it a pop twirl without feeling like a soulless hack.
And he is not the only one. There are many other contemporaries of Williams who find the guitar still the most powerful and dynamic instrument. They convey emotions through strings and properly paced arrangements. Jack White’s recent “Lazaretto” is the perfect showcase of newly vamped country garage rock, with an additional stamp of blues. Gov’t Mule is a little more traditional in their approach- a Southern swagger that is deeply enriching and right out of the Lynard Skynard playbook.
Lefty Williams has fun with the whole thing. He joins the ranks of his brothers in the genre to make infused soulful Southern sounds seem alright. “Snake Oil” bobs along; the guitar has a domineering presence in every minutiae of the track. “A Little Bit of Faith” begins with pure guitar twang, and brings in such an easy and cozy country style in the percussion that it could have been written by Greg Allman himself and would be considered a gem of the era.
Through all this, it is only appropriate that I mention Lefty Williams and his one arm guitar playing. It would not be worth mentioning otherwise, but Lefty Williams obviously embraces it in namesake and as a prolific live performer. It is all part of the enigma of his artistry. Out of pure talent, it is illuminating. I can barely play a Green Day hook. Musicians unfairly more famous than he can barely play a competent lick, yet he can entangle soothing Southern licks with intricate folksy patterns lines, while doing it with half the arsenal and ten times the creativity of the average person.
Upcoming Appearances Include:
8/01 Birmingham, AL Avondale Brewery
8/02 Huntsville, AL Humphrey’s Bar and Grill
8/08 Salem, VA Billy’s Barn
8/22 Atlanta, GA VINYL
8/23 Athens, GA New Earth Music Hall
9/04 Athens, GA Caledonia Lounge
9/05 Bryson City, NC Nantahala Outdoor Center
9/06 Asheville, NC One Stop Deli
9/26 Jacksonville, FL Underbelly
For more information contact:
PRE-ORDERS AVAILABLE HERE ON August 21, 2014: www.lefty-music.com
Ryan Merkel is a cool writer guy and contributor all over the internet, from blogs on music to magazines about music to sites about playing music. He is currently founder of SunState Investing and is head editor of the music entertainment magazine, CultureTease. He has written two novels, and is currently working on a third full-length novel, surprisingly, not about music. His novel “Splatter the Noise” earned accolades for independent publishing. Be sure to check out: www.sunstateinvesting.com
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