The infamous year 2020, although there have been a lot of restrictions preventing live music there is a silver lining to be had for those still responsible to spawn it. William Lawrence is an example of those who refuse to let these new set rules restrict his creativity. He started the year like many others in the studio with a suitcase full of new material ready to devise and debut on the road.
“We decided to continue working on the songs together from our own home studios, bedrooms, living rooms, attic spaces…we all recorded where we could” Ten months later, Lawrence’s third full-length studio album, Fool For You was released on Christmas Eve of this year. The eight song collection oscillates gracefully between dreamy folk rock and twangy country waltzes.
In a state like New York where Neil Young’s Canadian northern words blow across Lake Ontario and The Band’s grooves move you out of the Hudson Valley in Woodstock it can be helpful to use these influences to create your own voice. “Everybody seems to wonder what it’s like down here, i gotta get away from this day to day running around, everybody knows this is nowhere”.
The album mixed by Ian McGuire features a terrific cast of mixolydian musicians with James Felice, Keven Lareau, Rachel Meirs, Brian Kantor, Donny Amidon, Phil Nicolazzo, Allison Olender, Jonathan Talbott and Greg Marino. William Lawrence is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has been the drummer and vocalist for the folk rock band “The Felice Brothers” A song by the brothers “Whiskey in My Whiskey” is playing on the jukebox in “Merlotte’s Bar” in the first season of the HBO show “True Blood”. His collaborations have even taken him internationally with artists like “Conor Oberst”, “Mail the Horse”, and “Gun Outfit”. From a live album angle perspective, Lawrence’s “Live at Dewey Hall” is equivalent to Neil Young’s “Live at Massey Hall.”
The music is that matter of a fact over your in-home speakers. His lyrics reflect all of the love had by an outlaw in this life each day spinning around the sun. If you listen to the wind outside your back porch it will softly carry the words and music with it. Until the moonlight dawn you can let this album shine on you. When there’s just one more before you go needed at a roadside diner like Merlottes click the track “Jukebox” that has saxophone player Greg Marino bring it home for you. Is the recognizable penny whistle on Paul McCartney’s “Fool on the Hill” the same as “Fool for You”? No wonder it is “the most collaborative record i’ve ever made” says Lawrence.
What does silver lining mean? A silver lining is a sign of hope or positive aspect in an otherwise negative situation. The phrase is often seen as part of the proverb “ Every Cloud has a Silver Lining” meaning that there’s hope or something good to be found in every bad situation. Let’s be glad William Lawrence and company embraced this concept early this year to help bring this eminent music to all of us on the way to Christmas Eve. Let the title tracks lyrics help you celebrate this New Years Eve, “Got the champagne open in my hotel room, spent my last good dollar on a dream come true” Hopefully we’ll see them on the road in 2021!
Key Tracks: Fool For You, Jukebox, Wedding Song