Outlaw country music isn’t dead. Rick Elliot certainly believes this to be true. The bygone sound of the late 60s to the 70s in country music is hard to find at times today. When it comes to Elliot’s music though, its front and center. A little over a month ago I reviewed Elliot’s debut single, “West of The Rockies,” an old school song that harkens back to the days of Waylon and Willie. He impressed me with his maturity and deep voice that has the presence to make any passing listener pay attention. Well for those who enjoyed his first single, he’s now back with another new single titled “Let It Shine.”
The song is about dealing with heartbreak and getting over an ex-girlfriend. Well the man didn’t just get over this heartbreak, but another heartbreak in a long line of heart breaks. Elliot croons in the opening verses:
“Heartaches every time I hear your name
All the pills look the same
Well I’ve been here once and I’m back again
Same old rooster, just a different hen.”
Clearly the man is in pain and feeling sorrow. He just can’t seem to buck this trend of blues. Not only that he can’t shake these feelings, as he feels it wouldn’t be appropriate to “raise it up and let it shine.” Elliot says he would describe this song as “a little gospel with a sinister twist. It’s an upbeat country rhythm and screaming guitar make it a perfect driving song.” And I gotta agree with Elliot, as this song would great to listen to on a long drive.
That outlaw sound is loud and clear again. The electric guitar, steel guitar, drums and tambourine produce an upbeat, fun and decidedly country sound. The instrumentation is simply fantastic. It feels old and maintains the same Western tone of “West of the Rockies,” but also feels new and refreshing. You’ll easily find yourself tapping your feet along to the rhythm of the song, while being impressed by the display of musicianship. Elliot’s baritone voice blows me away with its flawlessness yet again. It just sounds so easy and natural. There’s a never moment where you think he’s forcing it or trying to do something he can’t. Not only are his vocals great, but it adds character to moments in the song to make them stand out more.
This 18-year-old country artist once again produces a great song. One of Elliot’s goals is to bring back the California country, Bakersfield sound and make it something people are paying attention to. If he keeps making music like this, people will take notice in no time. I believe talent always rises to the top and Elliot is an artist I believe can rise to the top. He’s simply too good for people not to take notice. Elliot’s debut EP is set to come out later this year, so stayed tuned to hear more from him. To me he’s one of the best new country artists I’ve come across in 2015. I highly recommend “Let It Shine” and urge you to check Elliot’s work out. Country music could use more artists like Rick Elliot.
To purchase it on Amazon, click here.
Photo Courtesy: Houston Roderick & LaFamos