BRET WALTON: Remember the RosesTake country, rock, folk, and Gospel music, weave them together with a poetic common thread, and add a large helping of poignancy.
This might be one way to arrive at the center of Bret Walton's music.
The writer of the "Three Old Rusty Nails" is back with a different sound and perspective that only time and maturity can give.
An only child, Bret spent countless hours alone entertaining himself with stories and learning music.
Ironically, it was isolation from the world around him that brought about the ability to connect to it in song.
Traveling with Armageddon and Easy Street as a young man, gave him a hard edge and forever changed the course of his life.
"Every single person I met on the road had a story that began at birth and continued beyond the point where our paths crossed", he reflects, "I would take that brief glimpse of someone's life and try to fill in the blank spaces with the impression I got".
Years of practicing this ritual has yielded a truly introspective body of work worthy of a listen.
"Remember the Roses" is Bret's mainstream debut.
An extreme departure from his early hard rock days, the album sports two versions of the title track; one fully produced and one acoustic.
Either way, "Remember the Roses" urges us to bear the pain of loss in order to grasp the very best memories.
Written in 2000, Bret has since dedicated the song to the memory of every American life lost on September 11, 2001.
It has quickly become a favorite of all who hear it.
The exquisite back up vocals, provided by Sherrie Childress, Beverly Shadle, and August Barone add to the overall haunting effect of the song.
"The Angel" explores the possible explanation of someone deeply loved and gone too quickly.
This song also has the most incredible story behind it.
Be sure to check it out in Lyrics & Insights as you listen.
Innocence and courage are the shades of blue used in the portrait of "Joe Poe", an adventurous boy not afraid to live.
"Slip Away" is a revealing look into small town life for one man after losing the one thing that kept him there; her.
It has an Eagle-esque, laid back feel and a groove that draws you in.
"Let That Cowboy Ride" reminds us that sometimes it's better to be alone than to be with a lost soul that can't help but break your heart.
A supportive shoulder is offered in "Go Ahead and Cry".
Breaking away from a straight-forward country feel, the arrangement is more contemporary and free flowing.
Bret rocks it up a bit with "Down and Out in California" and sheds the light on the heartache of pursuing one's dream; something he's all too familiar with.
You are hearing his story.
"Every Soldier Fallen" will cut any patriotic American to the core.
Written in 1999, it has never been more timely.
A chilling journey into the heart and soul of defenders of freedom, it will make you see our nation's flag in a whole new way .
Rounding out the album is a late arrival that has enjoyed much live success.
"Osama Run Home to Your Mama" is the black sheep of this song family.
It defiantly tells the cowardly terrorist just what's in store for him.
You may want to listen to this one outside so you can shake your fist freely.
It's straight ahead rock and roll that even senior citizens are enjoying! God Bless America! The album is a unique offering in today's high budget, sound alike climate.
Bret writes and plays all instruments on his songs and records them in his digital home studio.
The former hard rock and heavy metal drummer will surprise you with the delicate melodies and soothing instrumental sections in his heartfelt ballads.
"I tell people that I'm a reformed and recovering drummer", he laughs, "they just don't expect these songs to come out of a guy like me".
Check out the artist's website:
1. Remember the Roses
2. Slip Away
3. Osama Run Home to Your Mama
4. Go Ahead and Cry
5. The Angel
6. Let That Cowboy Ride
7. Down and Out in California
8. Joe Poe
9. Every Soldier Fallen
10. Remember the Roses(acoustic)