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Word To The Wise


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Audio CD, May 25, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

Bill Kirchen's sophomore release for Proper American, celebrating more than 40 years in the business with featured performances by longtime Kirchen collaborators Elvis Costello, Paul Carrick, Nick Lowe, Dan Hicks, Maria Muldaur, Chris O'Connell, Commander Cody, Norton Buffalo and Blackie Farrell, among others.

1. Bump Wood
2. Shelly's Winter Love (with Nick Lowe and Paul Carrack)
3. Man in the Bottom of the Well (with Elvis Costello)
4. I Don't Work That Cheap (with Commander Cody on piano)
5. Time Will Tell The Story
6. Husbands And Wives (with Chris O'Connell)
7. Open Range (with Kevin "Blackie" Farrell)
8. Arkansas Diamond
9. Word To The Wise (with Dan Hicks)
10. Ain't Got Time For The Blues (with Maria Muldaur)
11. Valley Of The Moon (with Norton Buffalo on harmonica)

Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 25, 2010)
  • Original Release Date: 2010
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: PROPER RECORDS US
  • ASIN: B003GEDLOO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174,061 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By ecle on July 16, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Listen up. Listen good. And while you're at it, shut up too (if you can't be nice). That's the sound advice from Dan Hicks, who co-wrote, sings, and scats the title cut with Bill Kirchen on Kirchen's latest record, Word to the Wise, just released May 25 from Proper American Records. Shutting up is also recommended so that you don't miss a beat, or a riff, or a sound on this duets album, which Kirchen says he set out to make with people "he shares a musical connection with." And because of his remarkable career, he's been musically simpatico with an impressive line of virtuosos through the years - musicians like Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, Maria Muldaur, Norton Buffalo, Dan Hicks, Paul Carrack, Commander Cody, Chris O'Connell, and Blackie Farrell - all now happy to be his guests on Word to the Wise. Maybe Bill Kirchen isn't quite a household name, but he should be, if fame was in any way related to talent and artistry. He's one of the top telecaster players on the planet, a true icon of American roots music. The liner notes alone make a good read, tales of life-long friendships and mutual admiration, words rich with wit, humor, joy, loss and heartbreak. It's all there in the music too.
Take the first song, "Bump Wood," an original. The lead-in is unmistakably, quintessentially, Kirchen's telecaster signature sound. The sound that says "fasten your seat belts - it's going to be a bumpy night." The sound that makes you close your eyes and listen your heart out. It's a celebration of being alive, of one thing leading to another, of what's important in life, of interconnections; but all that sounds a little serious, which is most assuredly what it is not about. "I know in the morning that it's gonna be good, when I stick out my elbows and they don't bump wood.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Donald E. Gilliland on April 13, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Word to the Wise features a supporting cast of musicians that are certainly known to most music fans: Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, Paul Carrack, Dan Hicks, and Maria Muldaur. But Bill Kirchen is the real star here. Fans of his solo albums, or work with Commander Cody & his Lost Planet Airmen, know that Kirchen is quite an accomplished guitar player, but the real surprise here is how strong his songs are too. "Word to the Wise" is chockablock with tasty tunes -- both originals by Kirchen ("Bump Wood", "Arkansas Diamond", "Valley of the Moon") and cover versions (Merle Haggard's "Shelly's Winter Love" and Roger Miller's "Husbands and Wives.") -- that are accentuated by the ace musicians onboard, and of course Kirchen himself. Throw in those guest artists (including Chris O'Connell from Asleep at the Wheel, Norton Buffalo, and even Commander Cody) amidst a party atmosphere, and a good time is guaranteed. Fans of the old Commander Cody albums will like this, but also anyone who likes spirited country-rock or blues should find this to their liking.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Dubovsky on August 14, 2010
Format: Audio CD
such a great album!
I own a handful of Bill's albums and this one is right up there as one of my favorites. It's quite different from Honky Tonk Gods but that's the beauty of a successful artist like Bill...always growing and covering new ground. A great variety of songs....not one bad one, in my opinion. This one has been spinning through my speakers for the past few days non-stop.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Richard on April 8, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Bill Kirchen is still at it as the "Titan of the Telecaster". This record has many of his old pals collaborating on a variety of tunes ranging from classic Kirchen rockabilly (Bump Wood) to ballads (Shelly's Winter Love) and more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Derek M. Koch on October 30, 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Dont want to repeat whats already been said, but this album contains a treasure trove of riches. Don't miss it!
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