Charlie and the Fez Kings | It's Good to Be the King

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Robben Ford Steely Dan ZZ Top

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United States - Nebraska

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Blues: Jazzy Blues Rock: Avant-Prog Moods: Mood: Intellectual
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It's Good to Be the King

by Charlie and the Fez Kings

Hot progressive blues with a touch of ZZ Top meets Steely Dan and Robben Ford. If you dig the sounds of the 70's, this montage of Fender Rhodes, Hammond organs and swirling leslies will capture your groove with rockin' guitars and soulful vocals.
Genre: Blues: Jazzy Blues
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Another Time, Another Day
4:25 $0.99
2. Mr. Wrong
4:34 $0.99
3. It's Good to Be the King
3:55 $0.99
4. Hiawatha Lounge
4:54 $0.99
5. Ricky and Rosa
4:12 $0.99
6. I'm Going Home
4:19 $0.99
7. Overdrive
4:17 $0.99
8. Shelter
4:04 $0.99
9. Sugar Daddy
4:33 $0.99
10. What You Gonna Do
4:38 $0.99
11. Desert Nights
4:38 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Charlie and the Fez Kings first CD, "Play Me Some Blues" was my first success with recording and producing my own blues CD. Stations across the world in the blues market started playing tracks from this CD and I gained recognition with the disc jockeys and cultivated a friendship with many. Kicking down the doors with two originals and the rest being blues covers from all the great artist, I was then free to write, record and produce my second effort, "It's Good To Be The King". This new release was something I'd started recording before the first CD was even on the market. Before I'd started, I had started listening to everybody in the blues scene and on my suggested listening was an artist named Robben Ford. The more I listened, the more I craved and Robben's music made great sense to me with his wide vocabulary of chords and modes, I knew I'd struck gold. Reading up on this legend, I'd found that he had recorded with Tom Scott and the L.A. Express back in 1974 and his playing had blown me out of the water even back then. Robben Ford and Jack Pearson are my favorite players of 2011 and have spurrred me on to write material I'd never thought myself capable of. The complaint I've heard from so many people are that blues music is the same boring three chords over and over using the blues scale and boring some listeners into submission. I started using more major scale chord progressions and began exploring all the modes and as a teacher I became curious about the potential of throwing some jazz feel into my blues with major and minor feel and the modes to match. I found the sounds of the Fender Rhodes, Wurlitzer and synths so attractive on a Yamaha MM8 piano. After all these years and my love affair with the Hammond B3 and Leslie cabinet have now been satisfied after bringing home an old Hammond from a church on the north side of Omaha. My guitar tones come mainly from using all tube amps and while I still own a Marshall stack for the bigger shows, I found the sound of a Peavey Delta Blues and Ibanez AG95 gave me the warmth and cutting edge sound needed to cover the bases in the recording studio. I brought a Les Paul Standard for a few solos as well, but the Ibanez was the work horse. On bass, I used the Fender Jazz bass lined in through a tube pre-amp and DBX266XL for compression. I still own and play my 1976 Ludwig maple kit, but I found the recording process was far easier using a Roland TD3 electronic kit run through a Presonus MIDI conversion into the computer and Steven Slate drum sample software. The sounds were punchy and I used several drum kits from Slate, but my favorite was the 70's Ludwig Bonham kit tuned to my taste. Kind of funny since it was the same kit that I play live. Half of the lyrics were written by me and half by Steve Erlewine who is a local writer on the Omaha scene. His writing is of a darker nature and delves into drinking, drugs and loneliness. These are things I know little about and throwing yourself into singing these tracks was interesting to say the least. I wrote all the music and found my inspiration from Robben Ford, but Steely Dan kept creeping into the sound. I've only performed one track by them over the years, but always used the "Nightfly" by Donald Fagan for sound checks while setting up PA gear. I've always been attracted to their sound and it's kind of funny that the Fez Kings are what I named the group. "The Fez" is a track by this group and it was never intended as a copy of Steely Dan, but crept in from somewhere. Most of my friends who listen to the tracks hear the connection stronger than I do... on the other hand, some of the jocks are hearing ZZ Top from some of the tracks as well and still a die-hard fan of this group! The tracks on this new CD range from the first track of "Another TIme, Another Day" with an upbeat feel and lyrics of dating a fickle woman constantly keeping me at a safe distance. "Mr. Wrong" is about the kind of bad boy that women seem to be attracted to...don't take this guy home to mother. "It's Good To Be The King" is the title track and is about the fool who falls into a pile of kaka and comes out smelling like roses. "Hiawatha Lounge" is inspired from a bar in Austin, MN that caters to power drinkers and hard cores who spend the day watching the neon sunset inside this corner bar. "Shelter" is one of my favorite tracks about driving home after the shows and calling friends on the cell phone and chatting about the old days to stay awake. Listening to Coast to Coast Radio and Art Bell was another way to stay awake, but we still managed to see things on the road that were not there... All of these songs tell an interesting tale and the music should take you to another place with deep textures of brooding synths, guitar, organ and soulful vocals. All tracks were recorded and performed by one person and took me the better part of six months or remixes and mastering and even stripping of tracks and re-recording. I've never been a perfectionist and I can still hear some wrong notes and certain instruments not in perfect tune, yet these little flaws are now part of my signature on this album and shall remain my mark in history. It's now up to you, the listener to determine if my quest for a blues image with a progressive sound was achieved with satisfaction. Enjoy!



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