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Charley Ramsay | Catalyst

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United States - Texas

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Pop: Pop/Rock Rock: Acoustic Moods: Type: Acoustic
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by Charley Ramsay

Rock/pop style with a mix of classical, resonator and electric guitars and baritone vocals.
Genre: Pop: Pop/Rock
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Ride
4:03 $0.99
2. Tangle In Translation
3:57 $0.99
3. Cisco
4:15 $0.99
4. Monkey See Monkey Do
3:27 $0.99
5. The Push and Pull
4:37 $0.99
6. Polygraph 2
3:39 $0.99
7. 15 Minutes
3:40 $0.99
8. Maddening Crowd
3:58 $0.99
9. Goldfish
3:30 $0.99
10. She Treats Her Body Like
4:10 $0.99
11. Catalyst
4:09 $0.99
12. Suzanne
3:25 $0.99
13. Intro
1:13 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Charley Ramsay performed original songs and played lead guitar in the Austin band "Hey Zeus" for ten years before taking time off to "find himself". He moved to California and found his wife instead. Over 15 years later, Charley now has a career that pays more than it costs and doesn’t involve traveling in a van with musicians across the states. He now travels in a van with his six children across Austin.

Catalyst is officially Charley’s mid-life crisis album, and contains twelve new songs that feature baritone vocals crowning smart lyrics on a bed of classical, national resonator and electric guitars. It was produced by Joseph Victor of Gang of Hair Studios (http://www.gangofhair.com). The songs range from the big-guitar rock anthem, “Monkey See Monkey Do” -- a satirical look at the YouTube Generation, to the melancholy “Catalyst,” which echoes a father’s care for the next generation.

He wrote most of the CDs material while commuting to and from work using his truck's CD player, a harmonica, pocket voice recorder and a blackberry to jot down lyrics. No moving violation tickets were issued during the making of this album.

Charley Ramsay’s influences include Chris Whitley, Mark Knopfler, and John Hammond. Charley recorded in Gang Of Hair Studios, Andy Sharp's Austin Studio and in his garage with crickets and his kids in the background.

Visit Charley at http://charleyramsay.com.



to write a review


Roots meets AOR/modern rock
The Austin-based Ramsay cites numerous influences, including Chris Whitley, Jerry Jeff Walker and John Hammond, and from the promotional photo of a vest-wearing, guitar-slinging Ramsay blowing harmonica, one could reasonably expect his latest solo CD to be filled with country-influenced blues progressions. But it’s not. Nor is it really a Texas country record or that of a stool-sitting singer-songwriter. Ramsay’s a roots-rocker, emphasis on the rocker, in the vein of another of his influences, The Wallflowers, along with poppier disciples like Sam Roberts and Butch Walker, the rootsier tracks of Velvet Crush’s “Teenage Symphonies to God,” and even the layered modern production of ‘00s AOR bands like Coldplay and The Fray.

Ramsay writes sketches of characters, emotions or scenes rather than stories. His latest songs center around the realizations and observations of mid-life, critiquing the aspirational YouTube generation (“Monkey See, Monkey Do”), searching for new direction (“Goldfish”), and watching the odd parade of world events transpire before one’s eyes (“Ride”). Ramsay sings with a hint of Lou Reed’s tuneless passion, but with a husky emotion that occasionally sounds like Neil Diamond; his lyrics often come in bursts, stuffing extra words and syllables into the meter. The album closes with a short, moody instrumental of acoustic classical guitar played over piano and a quietly hypnotic keyboard riff.

It’s difficult to pigeonhole Ramsay’s music, and that’s part of its charm. There’s a rustic underpinning to his subjects, vocals and music, with mandolin, fiddle, and national dobro providing folksy sounds. But many tracks are heavy on bass and electric guitars, thick in instrumentation and layered with multi-tracked vocals and production counterpoints. The result balances interestingly between roots and AOR rock, and should appeal to both crowds. 3-1/2 stars, if allowed fractional ratings. [©2008 redtunictroll at hotmail dot com]

Nena Meadows&Mary Hill

Charlie, Julia sends us all of your songs. We love \'em! You are great. I forwarded your email to all of my friends/family.....Nena


We picked up Dad to take him to the casino. I put in the CD and asked him if he knew who it was? No, was his answer, but he said "Turn it up, I like it!" Us too!