Lo Carmen – “Now You Know Nashville/Half A Man” Double A-side is available to stream @ SoundCloud.
by Walter Price
The history of story-songs is as deep as ‘the music itself. Life’s experiences retold in vocal imagery. And growing up with a Honky Tonk troubadour for a father and a mother who fluctuated between hippie and rocker, there was always healthy doses of Marty Robbins, Harry Chapin, Tanya Tucker, and Skynyrd in the vinyl shelves. All telling vivid tales. And since TV wasn’t really a thing in our house early on, music and its stories formed and nurtured my imagination.
Australian singer-songwriter Lo Carmen has released a double A-side that is reminiscent of the songs I grew up on. “Now You Know Nashville/Half A Man” are songs some generations may call ‘old fashioned country’, I call ’em authentic. And when you add Carmen’s experience-etched voice to tales of dreaming big and the wonderment, woes, and characters of Music Row…you have all you need to create your own cinematic imagery.
Carmen gives a bit of backstory for Now You Know Nashville, “I wrote and recorded ‘Now You Know Nashville’ in Nashville, and it encompasses all the dreams of my youthful imagination, dreams forged by songs crackling through tinny bedroom speakers from old records with great covers, about actually being Dolly Parton arriving ‘fresh of the bus’ ready to set the town on fire, only to discover that first you gotta learn the hard way how to write a good song first.
“There is no song in my catalogue that encapsulates my true self and my secret dreams more than this one, so here I am, proudly sporting gingham and lace, stepping off a Greyhound, living out my honky-tonk dreams in a parallel universe.”
This Old School ‘Valentines’ To Nashville was produced by Carmen and recorded by Chris Mara at Welcome to 1979 Studios in Nashville with a notable crew, Dave Roe (Johnny Cash/Phosphorescent/Sturgill Simpson) on bass, Russ Pahl (Kacey Musgraves/Yola/Milk Carton Kids) on pedal steel and Justin Amaral on snare-drum.
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