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Jared Tyler: Dirt On Your Hands

By Brian Rock

Jared Tyler returns to his roots on his third album, Dirt On Your Hands.  Judging by the title’s premise that you have to put in some work to get something worth having, it’s clear that Jared has done his work practicing, playing, and digging up the roots of Americana. A musical disciple of Darrell Scott and Jim Lauderdale, Taylor plays authentic Americana straight from the heart.

“Death of Me,” is a steady rolling Dixieland Jazz/Blues number. Singing of his love, he confesses, “How do I love you? To count the ways, I’d need forever and another day. If I didn’t have you, I know it’d be the death of me.” The Dixie rhythms transform the lyrics from, “just another love ballad,” into a joyous celebration of love.

The title song is a funky, red dirt tribute to his late grandmother. Blending both electric and acoustic guitar riffs with dobro and harmonica, the song creates an irresistible groove that makes you want to boogie your way down to the nearest fishing hole. And the song’s message is a timely reminder in an age of entitlement, that whether you want to go fishing or eat some taters, you’ve got to put in some work. Or as Tyler explains, “Grandma taught me all I need to know to be a man: You gotta get a little dirt on your hands, get a little dirt on your hands.”

“Fort Gibson Lake” is a more traditional Country song that celebrates the joys of casting a line. With his yearning, Darrell Scott style vocals, and pedal steel guitar; he becomes a back woods Pied Piper calling you to “take the Wagoner/Coweta on Muskogee turnpike. If you’re comin’ the back way, take old 69. Hurry daddy. Gotta get there. I can’t hardly wait. I’ve gone to heaven on Fort Gibson Lake.”

“Lucky I Am” absolutely exudes joy with each note. The bright, cheery strings of mandolin and fiddle perfectly complement the song’s message: “If you can count your friends on one good hand, count yourself a lucky man.” The line and the bluegrass feel of the song are both in honor of his grandfather, who shared that insight and bought him his first mandolin when he was six years old.

Tyler’s emotionally compelling and expressive voice brings these and all the songs on this album to life. The musical arrangements are richly textured and beautifully executed. The whole album washes over you like a cherished memory suddenly triggered by some imperceptible change in your surroundings. When you regain your bearings in the present, you are somehow comforted by the experience. Like getting dirt on your hands, this album stays with you even after it’s over.

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Brian Rock

Brian Rock

Brian was raised gypsy style, moving every other year until well after college. As friendships proved to be temporary, Brian found a constant companion in music, wearing the grooves off Beatles and Dylan albums before moving on to Lyle Lovett and Dwight Yokam. Living so often in flux, he has come to value music and lyrics of lasting quality. Not moved by trends or fashion, he is drawn to timeless lyrics and soulful rhythms. Although now settled down, Brian still expresses his gypsy spirit through his writing. He has co-written songs with musician friends he’s met along the way, including several contributions to the 2012 ICMA Album of the Year, Family Album. Brian also writes children’s books and poems, including the Children’s Book Council featured title, The Deductive Detective.
Brian Rock

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