His Facebook bio nails it, simply stating: “Started singing in church in Huntsville, Alabama as a child, and started writing songs in seventh grade in Windham, New Hampshire. Haven’t stopped either since.”
Fast-forward a few decades, and the tenured, once deep-south-dwelling singer/songwriter known as, Randy Forte—who offers an iconic multi-faceted list of influences such as David Bowie, Talking Heads, The Guess Who, Randy Newman, Blue Oyster Cult, Johnny Cash, The Beatles, James Taylor, Simon & Garfunkel, and many others—is now Phoenix, Arizona-based.
His band, Randy Forte & The Reconstruction, has afforded him the opportunity to work with a host of musical talents, releasing several albums in the process which include 2011’s Wonder Falling Under, 2012’s Eleven Steps from Where You Are and Just Another Birthday Song (single), and 2013’s The New Romantic.
Now, inspired by the music from his childhood, Forte has teamed-up with the likes of Cory Wong, Adam Ollendorff, Adam Beard, Kevin Gastonguay, Scotty Huff, Marcia Ramirez, Johnny Stanton, Tim Lauer, Gary Burnette, and others; in order to release his latest album, Chas Randall, an eleven track trip back to the place and time where his musical tastes took form.
HERE’S WHAT WE DUG MOST…
A lap steel and a broken heart open the album with the nostalgically smooth, Six Beers Away (From Crying Over You), in which Forte gives us something simple and accessible…
“I can’t help remembering, days I believed every word you said was true, so true, so true
Now I’m just six beers away from crying over you…”
The 12-bars of angsty love give us a tight little solo at 1:45 in, You Don’t Love Me, Like I Love You.
Like Neil Diamond made a record with Waylon Jennings, Love Out Of Luck, has a thick-like-molasses country cry with a crisp vocal delivery…
“And though we’ve talked it out over and over, the answer still seems so abrupt
Cuz we never ran out of love, love just ran out of luck…”
A melancholy tale of remembrance and loss, the folksy, When The River Swallows Me, provides a tender bit of finger-picking and ambient vocal harmonies and synth melodies, in this ode to the victory which Time eventually celebrates at the expense of each of us…
“We’re all about resurrection, how I will be set free
When the river comes and swallows me…”
Cross The Mississippi closes the album with a soulful bit of Southern Rock’n’Roll, reminiscent of the likes of The Guess Who.
Refreshing. Grounded. Nostalgic. As much as we at The Ark of Music love the electronic music movement, there truly is nothing more refreshing that a collection of hand-crafted music made with real instruments—by real musicians. Randy Forte’s latest studio album, Chas Randall, offers that very authentic quality—and with all the necessary pop-sensibility to boot. Catchy, love-centered lyrical hooks—for both the broken and the promised—repeatedly unite with just the right amount of electric riffing in order to create a well-rounded and authentic ode to the Pop and Country-Rock of yesteryear which—thankfully in our slightly intense world-culture—never takes itself too seriously.
Simon & Garfunkel meet The Oak Ridge Boys with a twist of Neil Diamond…
BELOW: Listen to Randy Forte’s album, Chas Randall, and connect with his social media platforms. Please support Randy Forte by visiting him online, and playing, downloading, and/or purchasing his music! And, as always, thank you for supporting real music!