George Ducas - Yellow Rose Motel
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Yellow Rose Motel (Loud Ranch Records, 2019)

George Ducas

Reviewed by Robert Wooldridge

The fourth full-length release from Nashville-based George Ducas, best known for his 1994 hit "Lipstick Promises" and as a songwriter for the likes of George Jones, Garth Brooks, Sara Evans and the Dixie Chicks, was initially released incrementally in four installments of three song EPs. Ducas co-wrote all 12 tracks with elements of country, rock, pop and blues with mostly good results.

The strongest composition by far in the bluesy title track (co-written with Jeremy Crady), a dark tale of a man falling for a prostitute ("When I told her I loved her/She was still gettin' paid") and becoming so obsessed that he returns to her room later with evil intent ("I had a bullet for her/And a bullet for him/I pulled the trigger/And I pulled it again"). Ducas credits Willie Nelson's "Red Headed Stranger" as the inspiration for the song that features the strongest vocal on the album as well as some hot blues guitar licks (though the liner notes do not specify which of the credited guitarists amongst Jeff King, Jerry McPherson, Kenny Greenberg, Bob Britt or J.T. Corenflos play on this particular cut).

With "Country Badass" (another collaboration with Crady), Ducas pokes some fun at those he views as posers ("Are those store bought holes that you're wearing in them jeans?/Wish I could keep my old work boots that clean"). Another highlight is "Eastwood" (co-written with Jacob Lyda) in which Ducas fancies himself as a Clint Eastwood type cowboy ("Always rolled like a high plains drifter/Straight out of some Western picture").

Co-produced by Ducas with Matt McClure the album is at times hampered by overproduction particularly on the amusing country rocker "Cold Bud." production excesses "Yellow Rose Motel" is a welcome return to the studio.

CDs by George Ducas

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