The Rev. Jimmie Bratcher review March 3, 2013…

THE REV. JIMMIE BRATCHER

SECRETLY FAMOUS

AIN’T SKEERT TUNES

JUPITER AND MARS–57–FEELS LIKE FRIDAY–IT JUST FEELS RIGHT–CHECK YOUR BLUES AT THE DOOR–TOBACCO ROAD–NOWHERE TO GO BUT DOWN–WHEN I FALL APART–NEVER MY LOVE–I CAN’T SHAKE THAT THING–BOLOGNA SANDWICH MAN–STARTING ALL OVER AGAIN

 

For starters, yes, Jimmie Bratcher is a real reverend who also happens to be a fantastic bluesman.  He balances things out in his belief that music is a gift to be shared, and he feels it’s only right to share it with audiences everywhere.

 

For his seventh album, “Secretly Famous,” Jimmie traveled to Stantonville, TN, to Jim Gaines’ Bessie Blue Studios.   He believed this to be the perfect setting for the album, which is ten originals and two covers.  The relaxed atmosphere of Gaines’ southwest Tennessee studio brought out the best in everyone, and it shows thru on the recording.  Joining Jimmie on this set is Craig Kew on bass, Lester Estelle on drums, and Rick Steff on keys.  The cuts explore things that Jimmie feels that everyone can relate to in order to have some fun and put their troubles on hold for a little while.

 

The leadoff cut was written by Jimmie and his son Jason, and is the tale of a “hot-head blonde in a tricked-out Ford” who promises you “the moon and stars, Jupiter and Mars,” even tho the cost is prohibitive.  This one  is driven by a catchy riff over a sparse arrangement.  The funky “57” is Jimmie’s ode to “a $100 experiment,” that turned out to be the Shure SM57 microphone, thru which much of rock and roll history was recorded.   “Nowhere To Go But Down” is a powerful cut that hearkens back to a darker time in Jimmie’s life when he overcame depression by changing his perspective and looking at things thru a more positive light.  “I Can’t Shake That Thing that you do to me” is another ultra-funky cut that shows Jimmie’s belief in the power of love.

 

Jimmie pays tribute to his wife Sherri with the acoustic “It Just Feels Right,” and the Addrisi Brothers and The Associations classic “Never My Love.”  And, he revisits a favorite song from his youth, giving a John Lee Hooker boogie treatment to “Tobacco Road.”

 

We had three favorites, too.  Jimmie rocks out on the story of leaving your problems alone, even just for a while, on “Check Your Blues At The Door.”   The hilarious “Bologna Sandwich Man” is for all those folks who obsess over their weight, when, deep down, “you know you want it!”   And, the set closes with “Starting All Over Again” and getting a second chance at love.  It’s one of the sweetest slabs of Southern rock that’s come down the pike in a long time.

 

The Rev. Jimmie Bratcher says that there are only two kinds of music–good and bad.  We believe you’ll find “Secretly Famous” to be the good kind, and this set is guaranteed to make you feel good when you hear it!  Until next time….Sheryl and Don Crow.

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