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Brown, Danny Joe (Band) - 1981 Danny Joe Brown Band

ARTIST: Brown, Danny Joe (Band)
ALBUM: Danny Joe Brown Band
YEAR: 1981
CD REISSUE: 2004, Wounded Bird, WOU-7385 * 2008, Rock Candy Records, CANDY034


LINEUP: Danny Joe Brown - vocals * Bobby Ingram - guitars * Steve Wheeler - guitars * Kenny McVay - guitars * Buzzy Meekins - bass * Jimmy Glenn - drums * John Galvin - keyboards

TRACK LISTING: 01 Sundance * 02 Nobody Walks On Me * 03 The Alamo * 04 Two Days Home * 05 Edge Of Sundown * 06 Beggar Man * 07 Hit The Road * 08 Run For Your Life * 09 Hear My Song * 10 Gamblers Dream

After only two albums fronting Molly Hatchet, the classic pairing of 1978's debut and 1979's 'Flirtin' With Disaster', Brown prematurely left the band. Reportedly Brown's much noted diabetes caused him to be unable to continue with the bands rigourous schedule, a point countered by Brown himself who has gone on record as stating he departed because of infighting with Hatchet's management. Thankfully Brown continued, forming his own band, the first member to be enlisted Bobby Ingram who had given Brown his first start back in the early 70's in Rum Creek. While Hatchet continued with Jimmy Farrar and recorded a worthy pair of records in 'Beatin' The Odds' and 'Take No Prisoners', Brown one upped them with his lone solo album, a classy pure Southern rock effort on a par with his Hatchet albums. Browns unmistakable gruff delivery gave the album a Hatchet feel, the album easily being able to pass as one, so identifiable was and still is Brown's association with the legends.

The Songs
Going solo you might have assumed that being 1981 Brown might have turned AOR, but as that was several years off such thoughts were quelled as 'Sundance' blazes forth in a manner Southern fans would have been delighted with. Sharp riffs combined with the distinctive rhythms of the genre are splashed all over, an ear catching opener. As if hurt by his bitter parting with Hatchet, Brown informs us 'Nobody Walks On Me', which manages to be light hearted and tough at once some nice guitar soloing from Ingram presumably. Brown actually had no part in the writing of this one, credited to Wheeler and Galvin. 'The Alamo' is to these ears one of the definitive Southern tracks ever recorded, the whole tone evoking the event, the chorus reminding one of such an epic battle, a memorable calvary like chant! This track makes the album worthy alone of hearing. The outlaw themed 'Edge Of Sundown' rivals 'Gator Country' in the epic stakes, a track which builds up as it progresses to a tremendous series of solos. Unforgettable and later handled by Hatchet on 2001's 'Kingdom Of XII'. The fireworks continue with the speed of 'Hit The Road', taking an almost metal direction, crushing in its delivery. Elsewhere there's the wonderful melodic chorus of 'Hear My Song' with obligatory honky tonk piano and the staright ahead hard rock of 'Run For Your Life'. Lyrically its hard to top the lyrics and imagery of 'Gambler's Dream', especially lines like 'on the South side of Chicago on a freezin' winters night'.. something I've become accustomed to!

In Summary
I've read reports of this selling for as much as three hundred dollars on E-Bay, such was its rarity. I say 'was', as Wounded Bird once again came to the rescue, releasing the album on CD for the general public to experience as the original album had become unattainable so long out of print had it been. This was the DJBB's first and last slab of vinyl as Brown returned to Hatchet in 1983, taking Galvin with him. Ingram then found fame with the excellent trio China Sky, then joined Hatchet for 1989's 'Lightning Strikes Twice'. In a sense DJBB is almost a Hatchet album as Meekins was also a member briefly in 1994. Quite essential then for fans of Southern rock, you can't afford to pass this one up now as it's readily available to own. 'Remember, remember, remember the Alamo'.. I don't think I ever will now!

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#1 | dangerzone on January 07 2008 05:20:24
The mark of a legend, Danny Joe Brown. Absolutely one of the best Southern albums ever recorded.
#2 | Jez on June 13 2008 03:20:15
Classic Southern Rock, If you like your Hatchet/Skynyrd stuff (which I certainly do) you won't go wrong, Straight down the line, well done Southern Rock at it's best, with good songs ('Edge Of Sundown' especially) and playing and those fab vocals from DJB.A much nicer presented version than the Skimpy Wounded Bird edition a few years back, so if you didn't buy it then, now is the time to add this excellent album to your collection. Highly recommended of the genre.

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