The Charles Burton Band

The Charles Burton Band
I Wouldn’t Lie to You

Self-produced, available on www.cdbaby.com

By Georgetown Fats
June 2008

It is a combination of a torn and tattered sweater over a pair of ratty old jeans which still fit just right, complimented by a sweat-stained Red Sox hat worn to the local coffee shop where all of the help knows your name and your order - and knows enough not to speak with you until caffeine hits the blood stream.

It is this special combination of cherished objects - in a sacred location where all walks of life can socialize - which allow many to remain grounded.

The Charles Burton Band’s release I Wouldn’t Lie To You is the soundtrack to this moment of clarity.

Burton’s guitar playing will not amaze and astound, his vocals will not make you forget BB King, or The fantastic Johnny C, but the man, the musician, the band and the recorded music still are worthy of appreciation.

There is no flash to any of this recording, but there is plenty of sizzle.

When not touring the festival scene in Europe with a project known as “Hooter's Blues,” Burton makes his home in the San Diego area where it is clear the Charles Burton Band is his labor of love.

His second release is 11 tracks of Clarence Gatemouth Brown- style swing time blues - infectious music that would have Gatemouth himself tapping along in approval - and one fantastic jazz instrumental titled “Cuba.”

“Cuba” is an understated jazz track which proves Burton has plenty of jazz chops to accent his love of the 12- bar feel. The song opens with an airy feel before the not-so-surprising Latin groove kicks in. Burton makes his hollow body electric guitar sing with natural tone from the guitar, and fingers that make every note count. Though the track is clearly intended to be guitar driven, not one note is overplayed.

“Swing It” is another highlight on the disk. It’s another jazz instrumental with Burton coaxing more runs from his hollow body, while the rhythm keeps a walking blues-jazz feel together. It is not as spectacular a track as “Cuba,” but it still demands attention. Burton and the band have a knack for the jazz brunch sound.

“How We Do It Downtown” proves these guys have roots in the blues. The tune offers an ode to how people from his neighborhood like to kick back. From the sound of the music, all of the recreational activities are legal, but it is a fun track nonetheless.

“Pull her over” is a blues-rooted track inspired by a woman who caught Burton’s eye. It may be a standard topic, with every self respecting blues artist having several songs dedicated to the call of the wild, but it works.

Overall, as a full CD there are spots on I Wouldn’t Lie to You where Burton’s vocals are exposed. But like that sweat-stained Red Sox hat that still fits just right, there isn’t another vocalist who would be able to sing for this band. Every piece of this ensemble, and every note played, fit perfectly together.

I Wouldn’t Lie To You is a quality offering,

www.charlesburton.com

www.cdbaby.com

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