Monday, March 14, 2011

"No point in running'"

... or Look What Dr. Fred Did

We are obligated to like things that our friends and family create. Knowing the artist behind a work of art makes us more likely to say "yes" to something we wouldn't normally seek out or pay close attention to.

Reader you have been there: A friend gets a gallery opening, publishes some writing, the band they're in plays a show, a dance recital. Love and pride and sometimes a desire not to wound makes us embrace the the effort if not the result and sometimes that's more important.

And then there are those rare instances when the result is good and worth sharing and talking about, not because you know the creator but because you know the creation.

The Typing Monkey enjoys a fair amount of kismet when it comes to talented family, friends and associates. We knew Dr. Fred Beldenstein's songwriting stirred at smoldering coals of heart-damaged music, and his previous efforts climbed closer and closer to that glow.

With his new-ish band The Great Tribulation, Dr. Fred has reached the light via his song "Sure As the Rain." It's a comforting bit of musical reassurance and understanding that these are, to crib a line from Jon Stewart, hard times, not end times. [How ya like that, Fred? -- ed.]

Singer Jeni Lee Richey doesn't sell the lyric so much as offer it because she understands that we need it. The voice, the words, the syrup of the slide guitar all reach out and pull you into an oddly personal shelter before Dr. Fred's quiet-storm guitar opens up and gushes. They call it "folk noir" and "dark country" -- sure. American to the core and as honest as a pair of dirty hands.

Go to the band's Facebook page and scroll down to the entries for Feb 23 to hear "Sure as the Rain" and visit their Reverb Nation page to hear more from The Great Tribulation.