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CD: HOWARD VOKES – Down In Nashville

Down In Nashville
Down In Nashville Tennessee – If I Should
Come Back My Darling – New Kensington Waltz – Too Late – Heart Of A
Clown – I Talk To Myself About You – We Could – There’s A Dream In My
Heart – Me Any My Broken Heart – I Can’t Get You Off My Mind
These days, there is such an uproar about the lousy music
coming out of Nashville called ‘country.’  Most listeners, especially
those that have followed country music over the years, are especially
disappointed at the short-cut electronically and digitally produced
imitation of the real-deal.  Even young singers like Corey Smith (from
Georgia), a great traditional country artist with a new record out
called “Fast Track,” is totally aware of the direction the music has
taken.  His work is very similar to what I am listening to in the works
of Pennsylvania’s King of Country Music, Howard Vokes.  Young Corey had
this to say, “The reality is that country music has swung too far into
this fake plastic place that is the antithesis of what country music
is.” I don’t believe it can be said any better, but as I listen to this
new CD by Howard Vokes, I can understand where young Corey is coming
from.  Howard Vokes has been in country music for over 60 years, and
he’s still singing and recording the real-deal.  This particular CD
shows a little rust in the voice, but that makes it all the more
believable to me.  Take away that 1% and the remaining 99% is terrific
real country music, at its very best. Howard has a very sensitive voice
for country music, and this selection of songs, typical lost love
country style, he’s singing it with all his heart.   He gathered
together some excellent musicians for this session, Skeets Martin on
lead guitar (exactly as I remember the leads and licks being in the past
on these kind of love songs); Howard Vokes Jr (Howard’s son of course)
is on the bass; and Howard is on rhythm guitar.  This is a really ‘take
me back in time’ kind of country music.  A little sad of course with the
lost loves all around him, it’s still the easiest, the simplest, and
certainly the most heart-felt method of creating and then sharing the
‘real’ feeling of ‘real’ country music.  Thanks for the listen Howard,
it was great!
REVIEW BY BOB EVERHART – www.ntcma.net
for Country Music News International Magazine

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