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Charlie Robison

Good Times – 2004 (Dualtone)

Reviewed by Rick Teverbaugh

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CDs by Charlie Robison

Family reunions must feature some really excellent jams in this clan. Both Charlie and Bruce Robison are outstanding musicians, singers and writers and both have married very well, at least in that regard. Bruce is married to songstress Kelly Willis, while Charlie Robison is hitched to Dixie Chick Emily Erwin Robison, whose band mate's father is Lloyd Maines, who is co-producer on Charlie's new disc and also adds pedal steel and Dobro to the mix.

This native of Bandera, Tex., proves again on this album his dedication to not only the craft of songwriting, but also to the idea that this material needs to be enjoyable for the listener. There's no Good Time Charlie's Got the Blues here. His music is hard not to like because he so obviously enjoys making it.

Much of the disc feels like you're hearing the music for the first time at some honky-tonk that's located in a dot-on-the-roadmap dirtwater town. His vocals are expressive yet anything but fine tuned. His playing sounds almost sloppy, but on closer inspection revealed to be precisely calculated to give just that feel. Robison really is an artist that has developed into a strong player in the world of outlaw country.