Hearing Aide: Andy Frasco’s ‘Half a Man’
Andy Frasco has accomplished more in his four-year musical career than some artists do in a lifetime. After releasing his first album, Love, You’re Just Too Expensive as a nineteen-year-old in 2010, Frasco spent the ensuing months with VH1’s Save the Music Foundation before making two more records, playing over 1,000 shows in their support and receiving Musician of the Year awards at several international film festivals.
And Frasco isn’t slowing down. His most recent release, Half a Man, continues the self-described “party blues” aesthetic that he established in his past work. This unique genre, which at first glance may seem paradoxical, is represented by Frasco’s ability to take traditional blues concepts and integrate them into fun, accessible tunes.
Part of what makes Frasco’s music so appealing—particularly throughout Half a Man— is his songwriting. Frasco’s lyricism is often rather simplistic, especially when compared to the complexity of his instrumentation, which incorporates a variety of elements ranging from organs to horn sections to electric guitars. Tracks like “Shakin’ Ain’t a Crime” and “Smokin Dope and Ronk n’ Roll” are lyrically straightforward, dealing with themes that are relatable to Frasco’s audience.
The album’s standout track, however, is an updated version of a song on his debut album. “Main Squeeze,” originally a slow moving ballad sung by Megan Burtt, is now a grooving jam, accented by piano riffs and featuring a chorus of backup singers. The track is full of movement. It’s characteristic of Frasco’s past four years, and it’s complimented by ten more tracks that demonstrate his signature party blues sound.
Key Tracks: Main Squeeze, Sunny Day Soldier, Shakin’ Ain’t a Crime