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Ted Russell Kamp’s Walkin’ Shoes

By Brian Rock

Ted Russell Kamp invites you to lace up your comfy sneakers and join him on a musical stroll on his 11th studio release, Walkin’ Shoes. Riding a streak of four consecutive “Top 100 Americana Records of the Year,” Kamp continues to do what he does best – making authentic, soulful Americana that’s just too damn good for radio.

Kamp traverses the American musical landscape from the Gulf Coast states to southern California. Starting with the chooglin’ railroad blues of “Home Away From Home,” he proclaims his wanderlust singing, “It don’t matter just what day it is when it feels this good to roam. Everyplace I go is a home away from home.” Hitting that sweet spot at the intersection of Blues, Country, and Rock; he captures the American spirit for adventure in perfect Americana tones.

With an earthy, organic, and earnest voice that’s ideally suited for roots music, Kamp sings about the highs and lows on life’s highways; incorporating the musical influences he’s picked up along the way. You can hear a Bakersfield influence in the grinding, “Paid By The Mile.” Bayou swampy Blues drip from every chord of “Tail Light Shine.” He gets his James Gang funk on in “We Don’t Have To Be Alone.” The sun-soaked influence of J.J. Cale shines through on “Get off the Grid.” He even rocks the rafters on the jazzy, horn-driven Dixie rocker “Less Thinkin, More Drinkin.”

Ted Russell Kamp is also that rare, triple threat performer who can sing, play and write well. His lyrics are poetic and poignant. On the bluesy, “This Old Guitar,” he notes about a musician’s life on the road that, “If you play rock and roll long enough, the Blues is what you get.” But like a moth returning to the flame, Kamp can’t help but give in to the siren call of the road. On the sparse, acoustic Blues song “Highway Whisper,” he sings, “When the lights finally go down on this town, and the quiet of the night is the only friend you’ve found; If you listen you can hear it in the distance – that highway whisper all around.” And again, on the album’s closing tune, “Roll On Through The Night,” he returns to the chooglin’ railroad rhythms of the album’s opening song as he sings, “It’s finally time to leave this town. If I could, I’d burn it down. The things I’ve done, I can’t take back. But this train is here and my bags are packed.” Embodying the phrase, “it’s not the destination, it’s the journey,” Kamp is always moving forward, burning bridges behind him as he goes. But in his Gypsy soul, he retains the memories of his experiences; and they, in turn, shape his music and lyrics. Coming full circle, the past that he tries to leave behind becomes the muse that inspires his future stories, songs, and adventures. And based on the depth and quality of the songs on this album, Ted Russell Kamp must’ve worn through a lot of pairs of walkin’ shoes along the way.

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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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