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Articles Home » 1979 Articles » Dogwood - 1979 Ordinary Man
Dogwood - 1979 Ordinary Man

ARTIST: Dogwood
ALBUM: Ordinary Man
LABEL: Myrrh
YEAR: 1979


LINEUP: Ron Elder - guitars, background vocals * Steve Chapman - lead vocals, acoustic guitar * Roger Clark, Kenny Buttery - drums * Mike Leach, Jack Williams, Bob Wray, Stan Armor, Steve Schaffer - bass * Larry Byrom, John Goin, Mark Christian - guitar * Bobby Ogdin, Shane Keister, Randy Goodrum - keyboards * Quitman Dennis, Dennis Solee - saxophone * Ann Fullwider - oboe * Ken Fletcher - glockenspiel, background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Ordinary Man * 02 Only Time For Love * 03 Ashes To Embers * 04 Beautiful Day * 05 Confidence * 06 Wasted Time * 07 Miracle Man * 08 Will You Love Me * 09 The Treasure * 10 Be Read

Common shrubbery found throughout North America, the Dogwood's flower petals form the shape of a cross which should give away the direction of this duo who released four albums; 'Ordinary Man' their swansong. I've never heard the previous three Chris Christian produced Dogwood releases although I've read were passable country bordering on rock and on the first two 1975's 'After The Flood Before The Fire' and 'Love Note' found guitarist Ron Elder and Steve Chapman sharing the spotlight with Chapman's wife Annie. Both Steve and Annie became popular figures on the contemporary Christian scene putting out a brace of records and books, but what happened to Elder following Dogwood's break-up in 1980 is anyone's guess.

The Songs
With Brown Bannister the man behind Amy Grant's mid-80's crossover success front and center in the production chair; Dogwood strike-up a pleasant countrified melodic pop resembling America, David Gates, Seals & Crofts and Dann Rogers. The title track is not much to speak of but, but 'Only Time For Love' is a wonderfully dreamy song in the same style as America circa the 'Holiday' album while 'Ashes To Embers' picks up on the late '70s disco pop thing with catchy results. There are plenty of keyboard embellishments to spice things up and songs like 'Beautiful Day', the up-tempo and very AOR-ish 'Wasted Time' and the ballad 'Be Ready' with its tasteful string arrangements give the album balance and running that thin line separating 'Ordinary Man' from the usual country crossover pap.

In Summary
While not really the type of thing I listen to very often, the album is worth a spin at least once and picking it up cheaply shouldn't cause too much pain. In 2007, Dogwood reunited and released a CD 'Down The Road' which included twelve songs, eleven of which were reworkings of early Dogwood material.

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