Artist: Red Marlow
Album: Country as Cornbread
Label: RM LLC
Genre: Neo-Traditional Country
Some of you may know Red Marlow from Season 13 of NBC’s The Voice. He walked onto that audition stage with a very clear idea of who’s team he wanted to be on when he walked back off–Blake Shelton’s. However, rival judge and fellow country girl Miley Cyrus put up one heck of a fight for him. Even I would have been tempted to leave Blake Shelton in the dust.
Admittedly, I’ve never sat down and watched an entire episode of The Voice, but I do like to watch the highlights on YouTube when I catch the occasional whiff of a talented artist, country or otherwise. It’s artists like Red Marlow that are just so honest to God country that make me wonder if I should be tuning into these televised singing competition dohickies.
It’s honest, God-fearing, hardworking southern men—and women—like Red Marlow that country music was intended for. He’s the face you’d picture listening to Tracy Lawrence’s “Find Out Who Your Friends Are” while you’re driving to work with your windows down on a hot summer day. There’s something about him that just brings you back to a slower time in country music. One where life wasn’t so fast-paced. One where the music really touched your heart and reminded you that taking your sweet time was how you got through this thing we call life.
Vocally, Marlow is incredibly interesting to listen to. Riffs and runs flow right off the tip of his tongue like it’s the easiest thing in the world to do. That’s a talent that hasn’t been at the forefront of the genre for a long time. Vocal acrobatics were what made what most would call a simple country song a work of art.
When I think of the perfect country album, Country As Cornbread would make it quite high on the list. Most would call it stereotypical to sing about Mama, and love, and heartbreak, and drinkin’, and God, but that’s what really matters to each and every one of us—that’s life, and the best part about country music is that it puts life to melody.
This construction working Alabama native has done country music so well that I can’t even pick a favourite song or tell you where to start. However, what I can tell you is that he reminds me so much of Tracy Lawrence and songs like “If The World Had A Front Porch,” “Time Marches On,” and “Better Man Better Off.” You’d be doing yourself an unbelievable disservice to let this album pass you by. What are you waiting for? Go give it a listen!