Jim Wyly review…October 7, 2018….

JIM WYLY

THE ARTISAN

MR. SNOWMAN–WILDMAN OF THE THICKET–SUDDENLY I’M SINGLE–NOBODY LIGHTS MY HEART LIKE YOU–I DON’T WANNA BE THERE–COYOTES OF LEGEND–RED WATER RIVER QUEEN–SOMEONE’S GONNA LOVE YOU–PLEASE NESSIE–YOU TOOK ME–THE ARTISAN

Jim Wyly has been crafting songs in and around the Austin area for the better part of forty years, and nobody can tell a story quite like Jim.  When we listened to him, we likened him to an older and way wiser version of John Mellencamp.  Figure it out for yourself thru his latest offering, “The Artisan.” Laid down at the King Electric Studios, Jim is on guitars and vocals, and he’s ably backed by another Texas legend with a recent album release of his own, Ray Bonneville, on the harp.  (Ray’s review can be found elsewhere within this forum.)

The arrangements are mostly bare-bones, giving Jim’s vocals and lyrical content to shine through.  Jim Wyly is Everyman, and we are all him, at least in some point in our lives.  Witness the poor guy who never saw it coming in “Suddenly, I’m Single,” with Javier Chaparro on that lonesome fiddle.  He comes home to “new locks on the door” and “all my things scattered on the lawn,” as he catches a cheatin’ lover in the arms of another man in the poignant “I Don’t Wanna Be There when she gets home.”  Ray’s on the harp on the tale of winning and losing it all on one roll down at the “Red Water River Queen,” where “she picks it all up and takes it away.”

Jim plays two pieces that are literally the stuff of legends.  First up, the “Wildman Of The Thicket,” “down in East Texas where the mystery flows,” has a Bigfoot mystique about him, while Jim pleads for the return to the surface of the legendary Loch Ness Monster, to forever solve the story, in “Please, Nessie.”

As one can ascertain from these stories in song, Jim Wyly’s characters sho’ nuff have kicked some booty in their day, but they’ve taken some licks, as well.  They’ve been badly bent but never broke, and are miraculously still standing.  Jim himself states it best in “The Artisan,” where, perhaps the greatest gift of all these folks is humility.  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.

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