This album of his spoke to me as an individual on a few levels. The opening song called “My Girl Now”, is one I felt was written for many ladies I know, or have known. As a single man, who takes pride in paying bills on time, and properly running a household, I cook and clean…and I am still always picked over.
You know the type of gal that stays with that creep, who enjoys putting her down. You have to idly sit by and watch her cry, and she knows that if she had the courage to change, you could provide her with a better environment.
Yeah, you would be able to boast about her being your girl, no more sad lonely night or verbal put downs. But you know, it seems for the last few years I play “Solitaire” alone.
This album speaks heavily about different life journeys and adventures. “A Rose Or Two” really spoke to me as well, about working so much and not taking time out for myself. We spend so much time running a household and keeping vehicles alert, we need to stop and smell a rose or two.
I think that he was dealing with the closure of the pandemic last year, by recording these songs at home and producing them himself. He speaks of a nasty breakup and picking up your one or two bags, and leaving. We have almost all certainly experienced this all too often life changing tragedy.
Texas is a hallowed ground for music lovers, on many levels both locally and on a national level. Many of us travel there for shows, and to play as he does here. Nothing but one bag and a guitar. This album isn’t my favorite one he has…but it certainly in my TOP 3 of his albums.
2. Path of Least Resistance (2:52)
3. You Can Go To Hell, I’m Going To Texas (4:17)
4. Birds That Sing At Dawn (3:35)
5. As Far As The Eye Can See (3:37)
6. The Hardest Road to Find – (3:48)
7. Solitaire (3:14)
8. Western Wind – (3:51)
9. Be Your Man – (3:37)
10. A Rose Or Two (4:11)
11. The Spark – (4:19)
12. Only a Broken Heart (3:04)
13. Exception to the Rule (4:43)
14. Lightning Strikes Twice (3:32)
Solitaire marks Ted’s 13th record as the artist and front man, and it’s a 14-song record featuring Ted’s bass playing, singing and producing. Recorded almost entirely in Ted’s home studio, The Den, during the months of the COVID 19 quarantine, Ted performed and engineered almost the entire record himself. Featuring a moodier and more introspective approach to songwriting and playing, this record is as much of a classic folk and singer songwriter record as Ted has ever made and features mostly acoustic and intimate performances.
As is usual with a Ted album, some good friends and familiar names in the Americana genre add their talents as well. Solitaire features co-writes and guest performances by Ed Jurdi of the Band of Heathens, Matt Szlachetka, Brian Whelan, Tony Scalzo of Fastball, Mark Mackay, Don Gallardo, Shane Alexander and more. Aside from Ted’s playing, almost every musical guest recorded in their own home studio and sent the tracks in to be added and mixed – recording quarantine style.
This is record deals with the isolation many of us have felt this last year but also has numerous songs of hope and inspiration as we dream and look forward to our future.
Ted Russell Kamp – vocals, bass, acoustic & electric guitars, dobro, dulcimer, mandolin, banjo, Hammond, Wurlitzer, accordion, toy piano, drums, percussion, snaps & claps
Shane Alexander – harmony vocal (Western Wind)
Jim Doyle – drums (The Spark, TX)
Don Gallardo – harmony vocal (Lightning Strikes Twice)
Ed Jurdi – slide guitar & harmony vocal (Exception)
Mark Mackay – electric guitar & harmony vocal (Hardest Road to Find)
Vanessa Olivarez – harmony vocal (TX)
John Schreffler – pedal steel (The Spark, TX) & harmony vocal (Western Wind)
Matt Szlachetka – harmony vocal (As Far As The Eye Can See)
Brian Whelan – harmony vocal (The Spark)
Produced by Ted Russell Kamp
Mixed by Ted and Mark Rains
Mastered by Mark Rains at the Station House (Echo Park)
Art Design: Paul R Moore
Paintings: Lea Williams
Album photos: Karman Kruschke