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Keep On Burning

Bob Frank

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Crítica do álbum

Comebacks are a staple of the music business, and few have come back from as far as Bob Frank, for whom Keep on Burning is his first album of original songs since his self-titled debut 30 years ago. The late-twenties Frank who made Bob Frank for Vanguard Records was a drink- and drug-obsessed hippie who wrote and sang songs with titles like "Wino." When no second album was forthcoming, it would have been easy for those who noticed (they can't have been many, since Bob Frank sold poorly) to assume that the singer/songwriter overdosed or drank himself to death long ago. Instead, the late-fifties Frank emerged in 2001 on his own Bowstring Records label with A Little Gest of Robin Hood, an English major's musical adaptation of a 13th century epic poem done as a talking blues. Of course, the only way young Bob Frank could have become old Bob Frank was by changing his ways, and anybody expecting a long-belated follow-up to Bob Frank in the same style is going to be disappointed. He may have survived, but the songwriting persona he displayed in 1972 did not. Keep on Burning, which was produced by Frank's old friend Jim Dickinson and features Dickinson's sons from the North Mississippi Allstars as backing musicians, is a good album of country-rock touching on cowboy ballads, mariachi songs, trucker tunes, and love songs. Frank sings those songs in a sturdy baritone that suggests a Nashville veteran rather than a man who's been building irrigation systems in Northern California for three decades. He does not, however, sound much like the Bob Frank of Bob Frank, even when he covers "Judas Iscariot" from that album, a song that rewrites the betrayal of Christ and throws in considerable substance abuse along the way. Another old song, this one never before recorded by Frank, is "With Sabers in Our Hands," a spirited celebration of the Confederacy that, like most paeans to the Lost Cause, conveniently sidesteps the little matter of slavery. Frank might have continued to live fast and then have died young, leaving behind that one album as a cult favorite. Instead, he slowed down and grew up, resulting in a mature singer/songwriter who remains a cut above the Nashville standard, but one less interesting than his reckless youthful self.

Biografia

Nascimento: Fevereiro/02/1944 em Memphis, TN

Género: Cantor/Compositor

Anos em actividade: '70s, '00s

Folksinger Bob Frank was born and grew up in Memphis, TN, where he began playing in coffeehouses in the early '60s. He briefly attended Vanderbilt University before being expelled for playing his guitar in the dorm. He earned a degree in English from Rhodes College in Memphis in 1966. He was then drafted into the Army, and his two-year stint included a tour of duty in Vietnam. After getting out in 1968, he moved around, working on a ranch in Colorado and a cannery in Washington state, and living...
Biografia completa
Keep On Burning, Bob Frank
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