So a week or so ago I was checking the FAR (Freeform American Roots) and there at number 1 was Rod Picott‘s new album Welding Burns. I went no farther, rather, I just went over to Napster, gave it a listen and immediately loaded it on the iPod. I agree that it’s a No.1 album!
Now I know Rod’s music from Slaid Cleaves‘ covers of his songs like “Tiger Tom Dixon” and “Black T-Shirt”. Rod also co-wrote “Broke Down” with Slaid. “Broke Down” became the most played song on Americana Radio when it was released in 2001 and won the song of the year at the Austin Music Awards. A couple of years ago, I saw Rod and Amanda Shires perform at the Tin Angel and even shook his hand and got their CD autographed! But I never really listened to any of the four other albums Rod has released, (shame on me), but this album will certainly lead me to them!
The album according to Rod’s website: “is a collection of songs bound together by the theme of loss and love…” The songs cover everything from the auto industry, (Rust Belt Fields) hanging sheet rock (Sheetrock Hanger”), to his father’s “Welding Burns” and tattoo “Your Father’s Tattoo”. The songs are real, and sung with grit and feeling. The song “410” is a terrific song about the desperation some folks are led to when told by the folks at the Unemployment Office that they’re on their own. Some folks then take matters in their own hands with the help of their 410!
Helping out on the album are Rod’s friends Will Kimbrough on guitar, Paul Slivka on bass, Paul Griffith and Tommy Perkinson on drums, and Amanda Shires on harmonies and fiddle.
Here’s what another great songwriter Mary Gauthier says about Rod’s music:
“Rod Picott’s world weary songs glow with both self awareness and humility. The truth of who we are is slippery, hard to contain, and most people have very little interest in it. Nonetheless, it is the work of an artist to find that truth and show it to us in ways that will see it. Welding Burns, Rod’s new collection of songs, is a fine example of an artist doing just that. The songs on this record reflect the realities of the time we live in, and they contain hard truths. The songs are both beautiful and disturbing, and are the work of an artist who deserves to be heard. I hope he sells a million copies.”
So check out this great album and as for me I’m going to check out the rest of Rod’s catalog and wait for him to the Delaware Valley!
Here’s Rod performing “Welding Burns”