So for the last month or so an album by friend from the No Depression Community David Brewbaker has been on my mp3 player. The album is A Sign of Life and every time I listen to it and become more familiar with the tunes, I like the album more and more! Brewbaker’s music is a nice mix of blues and jazz and the first artist that I thought of who plays that cross-over type music was Robben Ford and after several listens and hearing the sax work on the album provided by Brain Graham of Sly Chi, Portland Maine’s award-winning R&B/Funk band, I thought of Steely Dan. Anyway the music is great and so are the songs.
Brewbaker was born in Richmond, Virginia and now lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. When I asked him if he was influenced by Robbin Ford’s playing he said most definitely and also Larry Carlton. In addition to those influences Brewbaker has studied with some top guitarists including Jack Wilkins, John Scofield and Steve Kahn. The album was mastered at The Studio in Portland Maine where the likes of Tab Benoit, James Cotton, Patty Larkin and Ronnie Earl have recorded.
The album consists of seven tracks and each one tells an interesting story. Starting with the story of “Crazy Eddie” (no relation) the story of a slightly crazy homeless man and ending with the story of “Mary and Pete” and in between there are stories of loves lost “Two-Toned Biscayne” and probably my favorite track on the album “Sea of Cortez” which is also to me the most Americana sounding track on the album. Another fine track is the title track “A Sign of Life” which looks at the lives of people living in a terror-targeted nation where:
“tri-tones sirens deprive us of sleep, while
chasing the Chasing the Party of God through urban streets”
and the singer/poet/street caller asks when are the sleeper cells:
“Gonna raise hell down at the 7-11?
or take out the subway stations at Sheridan Square?
When’s the Walls of Harvard or Disneyworld
Gonna yield a dirty bomb -Goofy and Mickey
Just body parts on the landscape”
So if you are a fan of the music of Robben Ford, Steely Dan, J.J.Cale or Mark Knopfler or just like good music coupled with fine storytelling check out A Sign of Life. You can find the album at CDBaby.com, Amazon or itunes!