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The Rose Hotel


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Audio CD, September 29, 2009
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 29, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal Nashville
  • ASIN: B002JCSE28
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,387 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Rose Hotel
2. Flyin' Shoes
3. Throwin' Rocks
4. 10,000 Chinese Walk Into A Bar
5. Something I Do
6. The Man Behind The Drums
7. Goodbye Cleveland
8. Laughing River
9. On And On
10. Village Inn
11. Wireless In Heaven

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Long-awaited 2009 album from the singer/songwriter. The Rose Hotel was produced by the iconic Lloyd Maines and features musical assistance from Billy Bob Thornton, Greg Brown and the legendary Robert Earl Keen Band. Also appearing are Danny Barnes, Buck Allen, Drew Womack and Deani Flemings. You might just check-in and decide to stay awhile!

From the Artist

"I would love to have been one of the great singers in the world -- like Vince Gill or someone like that -- even if it was just for one hour," says Robert Earl Keen. "But I really feel like my gift is writing songs. That's just there and it's always been there. I don't know why, but I always have stories -- they don't all have to be true, just good. If I could put a subtitle on my best songs, it would be `based on a good story.'"

"You can tell when you play for people who never heard of you,"... "But winning people over - that's at the goal at the heart of every great performer. You try to win people over."

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By William T. Vogt Jr. on September 29, 2009
Format: Audio CD
I have been listening to an advance copy of this album for the last month. After many, many spins, I can say with conviction that this is the best album of Robert Earl Keen's celebrated career.

The record really displays Robert's impressive songwriting talent. With each new album, it becomes more apparent that Robert is keeping alive the tradition of great Texas songwriters. The torch has now been passed from Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, Willie Nelson and Billy Joe Shaver to Robert Earl Keen. There are very few modern writers who consistently turn out songs of this quality.

These new original songs, which include Rose Hotel, Something That I Do, Throwin' Rocks, Village Inn and Wireless in Heaven, are all good examples of the clever song pictures that come from the mind of REK. A number of different influences are found in his songs. There is a mix of traditional country themes, Robert's twisted humor and a dash of the darkness of Cormac McCarthy combined in his personal view of the world. Robert is able to take common events and turn them into songs that say a lot about the world we inhabit. He is able to avoid the chiches that are found in most country songs being written in Nashville these days.

Having been familiar with most of the original songs on the album in earlier acoustic versions, it was exciting to hear them with the backing of the band. If you have seen Robert's live show, you know that the players in his band are very talented. Rich Brotherton (guitar) and Bill Whitbeck (Bass) are fans and students of great music and their playing reflects it. Marty Muse has great touch on the steel guitar. Tom Van Schaik always lays down a solid foundation with the drums. Their inspired playing at the live shows has finally been captured on an album.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Naomi Manygoats on November 10, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have waited several weeks to review this, while listening to the CD, hoping it would grow on me. I have long been a huge fan of Robert Earl Keen, and generally can listen to his CD's over and over without growing tired of them, but I am sad to say that this CD, with the exception of 'The Rose Hotel' and 'Wireless in Heaven' really does not do much for me. I have never before had to try to let one of his CD's 'grow' on me, I have always loved them at first listen.

The song '10,000 Chinese Walk Into A Bar' I cannot stand to listen to. I have to skip that track, something I have not done since I skipped Yoko Ono's tracks that were in-between John Lennon's on one of his albums. 'Village Inn' sounds like it was composed by reading an advertisement of the place. 'Something I Do' may be true, but it is a yawner. I do not find myself singing any of the songs during the day, or thinking about the lyrics.

There is one thing that is absolutely outstanding on the CD, and to me it makes it well worth buying- and that is the banjo playing. The banjo player has to be the very best I have ever heard, and he is the bright spot and the salvation of the CD.

It is a shame that there are not any songs that I truly love, songs like 'What I Really Mean', 'Feeling Good Again', 'A Border Tragedy', 'Let the Music Play', 'Gringo Honeymoon', and on and on I could go....
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By dennis piper on October 14, 2009
Format: MP3 Music
The Amazon exclusive version contains the song Deep Blue Summer but omits the song Village Inn which IS on the hard CD version. The apple version is a $1 more but has a 12th song Little 67 172....and has the digital booklet.... its sad you cant get all 13 of these songs on a "complete version" of this record. I don't know if this is the record company thinking it can make a few extra bucks, but it stinks.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kurt Harding VINE VOICE on October 28, 2009
Format: Audio CD
I am not a Robert Earl Keen completeist and confess to owning only a couple of other Keen recordings. But I picked this up recently because I happened to be in Austin at Waterloo Records on the day of its release. Well, while The Rose Hotel doesn't top albums like West Textures, it does offer the listener lots to enjoy with a good variety of moods and tempos to go along with the generally well-written songs.
Here's what I like best: the solid title cut; Throwin' Rocks (except for the lame background vocals); the humorous, rollicking 10,000 Chinese Walk Into A Bar; Laughing River; and the corny, upbeat Wireless In Heaven which is chock-full of references to icons of modern life.
Overall, The Rose Hotel is a very listenable album without a single cut that will have you wanting to use it as a Frisbee. If you are a rabid Keen fan already, then no doubt you'll be buying this soon. If you are a sometimes Keen fan like myself then feel assured that buying this is money well spent.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ogg Oggelby on December 21, 2009
Format: Audio CD
If you like Keen's sense of humor it is present aplenty in The Rose Hotel. While there's nothing groundbreaking on this outing, it is solid for the most part. The players are in top notch form and Keen gives them an opportunity to stretch out for a change.

Sure, there a couple of weak cuts but there are quite a few that will become staples of his live shows. The guest contributions by Greg Brown and Billy Bob Thronton fail to add to the mix. Brown's composition seems out of place alongside Keen's songs. The vocals by the aforementioned guest artists only serve to make Robert Earl's voice sound a lot better than it really is. Maybe the inclusion of these two gravel-voiced gents was really a storke of genius. Is it live or is it Memorex? Maybe it's just that Marianne Faithfull wasn't available.
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