Jonny Fritz – Dad Country [album review]

by Woody on April 16, 2013


Jonny Fritz used to go by the moniker of Jonny Corndawg until this past Newport Folk Fest when he decided to drop the Corndawg and go by his given name of Fritz. That sort of coincided with the time when I had some emusic credits burning a hole in my pocket and downloaded his previous effort, Down on the Bikini Line. Up until that time, I had kind of thought Corndawg’s music was a novelty act. Alot of sizzle without any steak. As I dug into Bikini Line, I noticed that while that his music was laced with humor, Fritz was true to his love of country music as he explored the daily grind of life in small town USA.

Dad Country finds Fritz surrounding himself with a top-notch band including Spencer Cullum Jr, formerly of Deadstring Bros. The album was recorded out in LA, in of all places – Jackson Browne’s studio. While he was hobknobbing with music royalty, Fritz remains true to his keeping his music about the day to day. All We Do is a classic twang tear-in-your-beer tune about the inevitable end of the relationship. Cullom Jr. takes this tune over with his pedal steel.

There is also a couple of great tracks about the glamorous life of touring in a fan. Fever Dreams, a great song about being sick on the road and the helplessness you feel. There is some great pedal and fiddle on this track. Goodbye Summer details the interminable nature that a tour can take on.

It might have taken me some time to get on board the Jonny Fritz train but I am glad to be aboard now. Their live show is killer with Cullom Jr. and Josh Hedley, on fiddle, trading solos back and forth, it is worth ponying up for if you enjoy some real twang laced with humor. Special props for him for playing at a middle school in Montana – video below.

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