Shawn Nelson : San Juan Street

CD [Cover Art for Shawn Nelson / San Juan Street] Your Price: $16.53
Availability: In Stock
Sell date: 10/2011
Label: Fonky Tonk
Mfg's Catalog#: 30210
CDC Part#: 1623242
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 Notes & Reviews
Texas singer-songwriter Shawn Nelson takes the music he creates beyond it's honky-tonk core to offer songs you can dance to that also prompt the listener to think and feel. It's the natural result of being inspired by as well as meeting and spending time with such Lone Star State songwriting legends as Robert Earl Keen and Guy Clark as well as elements from his life, unique background and musical journey. On SAN JUAN STREET, Nelson's fourth album, his many musical and lyrical influences find full fruition as he blends his deep Texan roots with everything from jazz to Tex-Mex to reggae to bluegrass. Produced by Joel Guzman, known for his accordion work with Joe Ely, it features the playing of his band The Ramblers plus such guests as Matt Slusher and Will Dupuy from the South Austin Jug Band, fiddler Trisha Keefer of The Trishas, and famed Austin jazz trumpeter Ephraim Owens. From the lilting Texas dancehall strains of the opening cut, 'Nobody Got A Hold On Me,' to the borderland ambience of the title track, SAN JUAN STREET reflects the ever-growing musical breadth and lyrical sophistication of the Lone Star singer-songwriter movement. Nelson displays a gift for capturing personal feelings we all know like romantic yearning ('More Than California'), unrequited passion ('I Can't Hide') and longing for a better life ('Mercy') that he interweaves with larger spiritual and global perspectives, all of it underpinned by the faith and perseverance expressed on 'There's Time' that is a Nelson personal trademark. Taking stylistic cues from the breadth of his musical inspirations, he weaves bluegrass ('Anna Lee'), reggae ('Daydreamers'), Tex-Mex ('Dreams In The Desert' and 'San Juan Street') and more into a distinctive country-based roots rocking sound all his own. SAN JUAN STREET is the culmination of a musical career that began in a genuine good ole honky-tonk, The Back Forty, in downtown Austin when Nelson was a student at the University of Texas. A budding singer, songwriter and guitar player at the time, he summoned up the pluck to audition for it's owner and won a regular gig at the joint, where he got an education in entertaining hard-drinking barflies for the rest of his college years. Not long after, Nelson also landed an internship at the Arista Austin record label, and got to meet the artist who prompted him to start playing guitar and writing songs, Robert Earl Keen. 'I was inspired by Robert Earl because he seemed like a normal guy,' Nelson explains. 'He grew up in Houston as I did, and then went to Texas A&M and started playing in college. It kind of opened my eyes and I thought, wow, maybe I can do that.' Keen came into the Arista Austin office to secure a deal for his album PICNIC, which Nelson heard him play the songs for through the open office door of the head of the label. Then he was invited to come along with them to a Cowboy Junkies show that evening. 'Imagine getting to interact with your hero not just as a fan,' he notes. It gave Nelson the impetus to pursue his dream. After graduation, he moved to Nashville to work as a song plugger for the publishing company of songwriter Liz Rose, known for co-writing hits for Taylor Swift. His time in Music City was an important learning experience for Nelson, but eventually the siren's call of the Lone Star State beckoned him home. The first sign came when he was having a drink late one Saturday night in a bar, pondering whether Nashville was the right place for him and his music. Suddenly Texas songwriting legend Guy Clark sat down next to him and gently slapped Nelson on the back and offered to buy the next round. Clark had been at the funeral of his longtime pal and fellow Texas musical icon Townes Van Zandt earlier that day. In a highly emotional and sentimental mood, he spent the next few hours talking with Nelson about life, music and songs. 'Guy said Townes was the best songwriter that ever lived, and if I wanted to write songs I should study him, and I'd be just fine,' Nelson recalls. 'I'm not sure I've even scratched the surface of that study.' Yet Nelson's so

Nobody Got a Hold on Me
More Than California
Dreams in the Desert
Hit the Road
Anna Lee
In the Afternoon
I Can't Hide
Down Here
There's Time
Hollow Moon
San Juan Street