If you press hard enough, singer/songwriter/guitarist Chuck McDermott will tell you stories. Performing at the infamous Lone Star Cafe with Johnny Cash in the balcony. Hitting the stage with Freddie Fender. Recording in Malibu with John Stewart. Singing harmonies with Linda Ronstadt and Lindsay Buckingham. But the past is not his preferred tense. He’d rather talk about today. All the years in between the time he broke on to the scene in 1971 and today have given him a voice, both literally and figuratively. His rich honey/whiskey voice is evocative, silky and gritty, perfectly suited to the original music he’s penning now.
He jokes that his recent songwriting pokes around in dark places: human frailty, deception, apocalyptic weather – general mayhem. But it’s really an exploration of what he calls “finding the light inside the dark”. It’s his wry way of reminding (perhaps himself) that inside the tumult there can be wonder, gratitude, and even serenity. They’re lyrics he fully admits he wasn’t ready to write until now.
Everything from rock guitar to hillbilly fiddle makes it onto this thought-provoking tour de force, but Chuck's heartfelt voice takes center stage. A beautiful, heartfelt album. You don't hear things like this very much anymore.
Boston Globe Music Critic for 28 years
Rock History Professor, Berklee College of Music