John Fullbright’s / From The Ground Up
John Fullbright’s From The Ground Up is one of the best debut albums you’ll ever hear and I’ll stand on Steve Earle’s coffee table in Todd Snyder’s cowboy boots and say that. Let me begin again since I don’t know if Steve Earle has a coffee table, I know Todd Snider doesn’t wear cowboy boots and From The Ground Up is not actually John’s recording debut but it is his first studio album. Hailing from Okemah, OK singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist/storyteller Fullbright has staked his claim as not only one of the best new singer/songwriters but one of the best singer/songwriters period. I’d be willing to bet Joe Ely, Todd Snider or Robert Earl Keen cover one or more of John’s tunes in the not too distant future. From piano ballads to country to folk-rockers Fullbright has delivered an amazing disc that should end up on many end of year Top Ten lists.
“Moving”, “Daydreamer” and “Gawd Above” are three of my favorite tracks from the disc.
In “Moving” an old man supplies the road wisdom with a chorus ripe for a late-night sing-along:
“Old man broke down on the side of the road
Stop and see if maybe I can lighten his load
He opened the door and he thanked me in kind
Told me the words that would open my mind
Don’t worry about gasoline
Don’t worry about the tv screen
Don’t worry about the bombs that fall
Don’t worry about nothing at all”
In “Daydreamer” Fullbright perfectly captures the conflict between the young and old, fathers and sons:
“Young men spend a lot of time watching old men make mistakes
But when the young man falls
Well then the old heart breaks
Theres a fire burning deep inside and its as mad as its mean
Its hungry as its lean
And its as fleeting as a dream
Dream me a better world and I’ll find a better way
Dream me a bigger sky and I’ll blow the rain away
I’m a young man today
Thats got nothing left to say about tomorrow.”
Finally, here’s “Gawd Above”, yet another great track from the disc.
Here’s John’s tour dates and here’s hoping he adds a date in Durham/Raleigh/Chapel Hill.