A few years ago, there was this guy at Tamworth who was causing a bit of a buzz with both fans and fellow musos alike. Everybody was talking about this bloke who could play a guitar in a pretty speccy way and who had a voice that would take you back to some of the best of the trad. country guys of the 70’s and 90’s. He appeared with some elite country boys and gals on the stage and then all of a sudden, he was at another gig and then another one and then another one, til you ended up seeing him at what seemed like 90 percent of Tamworth gigs.
The guy, was Anthony Taylor. I have heard some of the biggest names in the Australian Country Music scene sing his praises. I have watched as some of the biggest names have just shaken their heads on stage and said things like, ‘How am I going to follow that?’. If you look at the credits on this album, you will see some of those names that I am talking about. They helped put this album together and some of them are also listed in the people who contributed.
I always get excited when I hear my heroes talk about an artist in this way and I am even more excited when I hear the artist and don’t get disappointed.
Anthony would not be out of place should Kris and Willie decide to put the Highwaymen together again with some new additions. He would not have been out of place with the best of American Country Music in the 90’s with the likes of Randy Travis, Travis Tritt and Garth, George, Alan, Vince, Collin Raye and co. He would not have been out of place with some of the best of the 70’s like Don Williams, Kenny Rogers, Tom T Hall and others. You will notice that I mention Americans here, but that is what I think of when I hear his style, not his sound.
Apart from a few songs on this album, most of the songs have been written by Jayson and Peta Cherae Peters. Peta has written for lots of artists, including Rebecca Lee Nye. They have written songs that suit Anthony’s voice,
Anthony was probably tempted to do an album of covers, because we all know that on stage, he can do them so well. I for one, am glad that he didn’t go that way. The covers that he has selected on this album are probably not as well known as others by those artists. The beautiful Candle for a Cowboy penned by Darrell Scott and sung by Tim McGraw and Travis Tritt’s Still in Love With You are perfect choices. If these Old Boots can talk, written by Luke Austen (whom he shares a stage with each Tamworth at the Legends Long Lunch) and young Jake Sinclair is a very country collaboration. Lane Turner’s Outside Looking In is a great start to the album and Wynn Varble’s Good Ol’ Boys and the title track Music Man.
I think Peta and Jayson have written the best songs for Anthony though, they really did match up the singer and the song. Peta’s solo writing effort – Pastor’s Daughter is a particular favourite and I really love I’ll Love her Long by Jayson and Peta – which is probably my favourite song on the album. We waited a long time for this album, but I knew that it would be worth the wait. Good things are always worth waiting for, great things are even better for the wait. The musicians on this album are top class. Simon Johnson did a wonderful job producing it as well.
This album is top shelf. Give your ears a good workout with this one. The whole neighbourhood is hearing mine. No complaints yet!
Outside Looking In (Lane Turner)
Try Again (Peta Cherae Peters)
If These Old Boots Could Talk (Luke Austen/Jake Sinclair)
Still In Love With You (Travis Tritt)
Good Ol’ Boys (Wynn Varble/Knowles)
I’ll Love Her Long (Jayson Peters/ Peta Cherae Peters)
Beautiful Thing (Jayson Peters/Peta Cherae Peters)
Pour Me the Bottle (Peta Cherae Peters)
Pastor’s Daughter (Peta Cherae Peters)
Candle for A Cowboy (Darrell Scott)
Music Man (Wynn Varble/Beathard)
One Shot Away – (Jayson Peters/Peta Cherae Peters)
Produced by Simon Johnson at Hillbilly Hut
Mixed by Simon Johnson
Mastered by Jeff McCormack
Design by StudioGoonga
Drums – Brad Bergen
Bass – Simon Johnson
Acoustic guitars – Glen Hannah, Brad Bergen
Electric guitars – Glen Hannah, Redd Volkaert, Rick Gough, Anthony Taylor, Jimmy Olander
Piano – Vaughan Jones, Daniel Marolla
Fiddle – Mick Albeck
Mando – Mick Albeck
Steel – Michel Rose
String arrangements – Mike Carr
Dobro – James Church
Backing vocals – Brendan Radford, Me ( Little Sis)
Vocals recorded at Bounce Studio by Brendan Marolla