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Ginger's Dish Ep

Paxton

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Album Review

Blues and country artists have long been known for their ability to find humor in life's disappointments and challenges. Buck Owens' "Act Naturally," Memphis Slim's "Whiskey and Gin" and Jerry Lee Lewis' "What Made Milwaukee Famous" — just to give a few examples — are full of pain, yet the artists' ability to laugh in the face of adversity and find humor in their own suffering is somehow inspiring. And one could say the same thing about a lot of hip-hop, which is also full of dark humor — many MCs have sounded like they're laughing to keep from crying. Paxton isn't a blues, country, or hip-hop artist; his turf is guitar pop and pop/rock, but like so many bluesmen, honky tonkers, and MCs, he has clearly mastered the art of laughing at life's challenges. Ginger's Dish is full of pain and disillusionment, but it's also full of humor and isn't devoid of hope. This introspective EP, which isn't as rockin' as Paxton's self-titled debut album of 1997, gets off to a thoughtful start with "What's It like to Be You?." Taking a look at the chic, trendy "beautiful people" of Gap commercials and pretentious, elitist nightclubs, this opener is sung from the perspective of the "average guy" who shops at K-Mart and wouldn't get past the doorman at such a club. Similarly, "A Little Better" and "How the Love Turns Around" aren't exactly cheerful, but they aren't depressing either. And that's because Ginger's Dish, for all of its pain and sadness, ultimately comes across as the work of a survivor.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Power pop singer/songwriter Paxton was born and raised in Indiana; orphaned at age 12 after the death of his mother, from whom he inherited his passion for music, a few years later he quit school and hit the road with his guitar in tow, wandering across the country, accepting a series of odd jobs and performing in the occasional club. By the mid-1970s he'd become a professional dancer, appearing with a number of national touring companies; eventually Paxton moved to Nashville to pursue a career in...
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Ginger's Dish Ep, Paxton
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