“The Foundation” (Cracker Barrel Version) – Zac Brown Band – A Review
For a long time, I had been fighting this guys material, Like, who is he? Covering all this stuff and sounding like Charlie Daniels. Doing Southern Rock in his shows.
Zac Brown quit his job cooking in the Family restaurant in Atlanta to start a musical career. He started out just by himself singing and playing guitar. One by one ,He added members to his group. This is his third CD i think, the First one on a major Label. What I am listening to is what won me over for good. There is a short fiddle intro and then the song starts, I used to see this video on GAC all of the time, The song is Free, The video shows the ZBB on a visit to Iraq and follows them around and they do a show for the troups. For me , this is tops, it is a real sacrifice to make a trip to Iraq, but they looked comfortable and the song is beautiful.
Alan Jackson’s cohort for many years, Keith Stegall helps him produce this CD. Brown insists that their music is Southern, not country, now there are places in the CD that I can pick that up, but face it folks, “chicken pickin’ is chickin’ pickin'”. Talking about, “Chicken Fried” is a classic song that just begs a listen, full of great hooks and melodies. I really love a song that they do called “Mary”. It is about someone who is letting him down. Between him and his lead guitar player, the song has some really great guitar pickin’, his classical type guitar gives out a different vibe, but he makes it work. It is a custom Taylor, made for him. He really can play well as does his whole band.
“Different Kind Of Find” goes into some southern rock on the lead guitar, this recording has a real live vibe. His band really has their own signature on their sound and they are southern folk that make you feel at home. When I first watched him, I just did not trust him. He seemed a bit aloof, I think that is, just him. After watching much footage of him, he seems to be a real downhome type of guy.
Bonus coverage – What makes this Foundation different is the addition of three cover songs that they do live. They do a Band like version of “The Night They Drove Ole Dixie Down”, The vocals are just great, lots of emotion and energy put into it. Then they do a Lucinda Williams song, “I lost It” For the last song is a very moving version of Dylan’s “I Shall Be Released.” Another awesome rendition with an incredible slide break, ala Duane Allman , I mean the phrasing, everything sounds just like He is in the House. Man, can this guy play some guitar. Zac sings this really well with help from his band.
Well, this was a very enjoyable review. This CD is plain good, plus , the bonus stuff. Now if I play my cards right, the good thing about reviewing for Cracker Barrel is that if they like your review, you might get a gift certificate for yourself and a friend for a meal, not a chintzy meal, but like whatever you want to eat. Zac ,also has some things in the store , like a cookbook and a couple of sauces “Southern Ground Grub”.