David Rodriguez | Proud Heart

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Proud Heart

by David Rodriguez

Recovery Recordings announces the release of PROUD HEART by Texas expatriate singer/songwriter, David Rodriguez. Originally released in Europe, PROUD HEART found it's way into the U.S. market in 2003 and was a welcome return for all his friends and fans.
Genre: Folk: Modern Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Out Of Range
5:06 $0.99
2. Streets Of Milan
3:37 $0.99
3. Sheffield Hotel
2:36 $0.99
4. Beautiful Rider
2:57 $0.99
5. Proud Heart
5:11 $0.99
6. Two Truths
3:33 $0.99
7. Chitarrista Cieco
4:05 $0.99
8. Pretty Brechje
3:24 $0.99
9. Simple Things
4:51 $0.99
10. When Icarus Fell
4:45 $0.99
11. Rice's Crossing
3:27 $0.99
12. Run With Me
4:29 $0.99
13. The Other Texas
4:03 $0.99
14. Michoacan
4:50 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes

Recovery Recordings announces the release of PROUD HEART by Texas expatriate singer/songwriter, David Rodriguez. PROUD HEART is Rodriguez' first CD released in the United States in over ten years. Produced by noted Dutch bandleader and songwriter, Ad van Meurs, aka The Watchman, PROUD HEART, was recorded in the Netherlands in the southern town of Eindhoven and mastered in the United States in Houston, Texas. The CD contains 14 tracks; 12 new ones penned by Rodriguez, one by Van Meurs, and one by Italy's poet laureate, Luigi Grechi.

Known as a songwriter's songwriter, Rodriguez' body of work remains highly praised by both songwriters and industry insiders. "He's the best still-living singer/songwriter today," testifies producer Van Meurs. During his musical career, Rodriguez has collaborated and shared the stage with Nanci Griffith, Dar Williams, Ani Di Franco, Eric Taylor, Michelle Shocked, The Very Girls, Lyle Lovett, his younger brother, Philip Rodriguez, and his daughter, Carrie Rodriguez. However, it was Lovett who paid Rodriguez the highest compliment one songwriter can pay another by recording the Rodriguez composition, "Ballad of the Snow Leopard and the Tanqueray Cowboy," for the 1998 Lyle Lovett double CD, STEP INSIDE THIS HOUSE. "Ballad of the Snow Leopard" was also included in the soundtrack of the Lawrence Kasdan movie, MUMFORD, distributed by Touchstone/Disney.

Rodriguez is also known for his collaboration and long-time friendship with Grammy Award winner, Lucinda Williams. On a previous Rodriguez album, he and Lucinda shared a duet on the poignant Woody Guthrie ballad about the plight of migrant farm workers, "Plane Wreck at Los Gatos" - a favorite still today of radio music directors and folk-music program hosts. During a recent concert in Holland, Lucinda Williams told an audience at Amsterdam's massive Paradiso club of which David was seated, "I'm a little nervous...I'm in the presence of genius because my friend David Rodriguez is here tonight."

Living in self-imposed exile in the Netherlands since 1994, when he decided not to return home after a European tour, this former Austin resident last took the stage in the United States at the 1995 Kerville Folk Festival [in Kerville, Texas]. However, the enigmatic songwriter left for Europe soon after his performance and hasn't returned since.

PROUD HEART is an album about a man who is torn between the loss of the love of friends and family he left behind in his native Texas, and the hope and optimism he holds for a bright new future in the lowlands of Holland that's extending him the opportunity to reinvent himself and start life over again.

We regret to inform our friends and fans that David Rodriguez passed away October 26, 2015, of natural causes, in the town of Dordrecht, in the Netherlands. He was 63 years old.

If you are a fan of BLOOD ON THE TRACKS-era Bob Dylan, then you will enjoy PROUD HEART by David Rodriguez.

*Produced by Ad van Meurs
*Recorded at the Daltoon Studio, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
*Engineered by Eric van der Lest and Ankie Keultjes
*Executive Producer: Ivan Koop Kuper
*Re-Mastered by Rodney Meyers, Houston, Texas
*Photography: Herman Mertens


RECOVERY RECORDINGS would like to thank the following radio stations (worldwide) for their support:

KUT FM, Austin, Texas (Phil Music, Folkways)
KDHX FM, St. Louis, Missouri (Songwriter's Showcase)
KCLC FM, St. Louis, Missouri (Acoustic Edge)
WCUW FM, Worcester, Massachusetts (Crosstracks)
WRIR FM, Richmond, Virginia (Lost Music Saloon)
KWRP FM, Pecos/Santa Fe, New Mexico
KCLP FM, Gallup, New Mexico (Green Chile Revival)
WYEP FM, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (American Sampler)
WRIU FM, Kingston, Rhode Island (Boudin Barndance)
Allegeheny Mountain Radio, Dunmore, West Virginia
KRCL FM, Salt Lake City, Utah
WWUH FM, W. Hartford, Connecticut
KZSU FM, Stanford, California
2RRR 88.5 FM, Sydney, NSW, Australia (Cosmic Cowboy Cafe)
Access Sacramento Community Radio, California (Semi-Twang)
Radio ISW FM, Waldkraiburg, Germany (Folk & Country Corner)
CountryMusic24 Radio, Berlin, Germany (Hillbilly Rockhouse)
CKUT FM, Montreal, Canada (Folk Roots/Folk Branches)
WRKF FM, Baton Rouge, Louisiana (Hootenany Power)
KSYM FM, San Antonio, Texas (Third Coast Music Network)
BRTO FM, Bergen Op Zoom, Netherlands (Crossroads)
WMBR FM, Cambridge, Massachusetts (Three Ring Circus)
Bay FM, Bryron Bay, NSW, Australia (The Cowboy's Sweetheart)
Spydar Radio, Ireland (The Miller Tells Her Tale)
107.5 FM Landsmeer, Purmerend, Netherlands
Radio Winschoten, Netherlands (Alt. Country Cooking)
Radio Venray, Venray, Netherlands (Peel Grass)
KDVS FM, Davis, California (Saturday Morning Folk Show)
KDRP FM, Dripping Springs, Texas (The Country Store)
KPFT FM, Houston, Texas (Spare Change, Lone Star Jukebox)
KTRU FM, Houston, Texas (Chicken Skin Music)
KEOS FM, Bryan-College Station, Texas
WSCL FM/WSDL FM, Salisbury, Maryland (Just Folks)
Montana Public Radio, Missoula/Great Falls, Montana
Jefferson Public Radio, Ashland, Oregon
Live365.Com, Santa Rosa, California (Freight Train Boogie)
96.5 Inner FM, Melbourne, Australia (Folk & Roots)
WKZE FM, Sharon Connecticut (Harmony Junct., The Beat-n-Track)
WHUS FM, Storrs, Connecticut
WGBU FM, Bowling Green, Ohio
WAPS FM, Akron, Ohio (Just Plain Folk)
Radio Avesta, Avesta, Sweden (Country Corner)
WFDU FM, Teaneck, New Jersey (Traditions)
KGNU FM, Boulder, Colorado
KGSR FM, Austin, Texas (Sunday Night News)
BBC Radio Shetland, Lerwick, Scotland
Radio ZuSa 95.5 FM, Lueneburg, Germany
Radio Voce Spazio, Alessandria, Italy (Highway 61)
CJSW FM, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Radio Herford-CF/JGM, Buende, Germany (Just Good Music)
Radio Schouwen Duiveland, Ouwerkerk, Netherlands
Don Valley AM, Stainforth, Doncaster, S. Yorkshire, England
WDBX FM, Carbondale, Illinois (TGIFolk)
KABC FM, Santa Fe, New Mexico (Transitions Radio Magazine)
Radio Teutoburger Wald, Herford, Germany (Old Stringhouse Music)
PBS 106.7 FM, Fitzroy, Victoria, Australia (What The Folk!)
KRFC FM, Fort Collins, Colorado
KPSU FM, Portland, Oregon (Suspect Terrane, Town & Country)
Radio Upper Galilee 103.5 FM, Katzrin, Israel (World Waves)
VLOK Radio, Kalwijk & Valkenburg, Netherlands (Country Festival)
Radio Compagnie, Hoogezand-Sappemeer, Netherlands (Country Stew)
WXPN FM, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (The Morning Show)
WMHB FM, Waterville Maine (Jerry's Place)
WSPN FM, Saratoga Springs, New York (Simpatico)
KOOP FM, Austin, Texas (Around The Town Sounds)
Regio FM, Nieuwolda, Netherlands (Texas Radio)
CJSW 90.9 FM, Calgary, Alberta, Canada (Folkcetera)
Radio FM Goud, Hechtel-Eksel, Belgium (Roots Revival)
KSIL 105.5 FM, Silver City, New Mexico
KFJC 89.5 FM, Los Altos Hills, California
CHES 101.5 FM, Erin, Ontario, Canada (Acoustic Planet)
KUSP FM, Santa Cruz, California (Skylarkin')
Texas Top 40 (webcast), San Leon, Texas
Radio Aria 99.6 FM, Longwy, France (Country & Co.)
CKMO Village 900 AM, Victoria, British Columbia, Australia
Radio Ariane, Tongeren, Belgium (Dippity-Do)
Origineel FM, Korenjijk, Netherlands (Let There Be Country)
Hoss The Boss Radio (webcast), Corpus Christi, Texas
Taproot Radio (webcast), Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Radio Gold Popolare Network, Carpeneto Al, Italy
Live365.com (webcast), Bridgewater, Virginia (Americana House Party)
CRS 38, Radio Waves International, Rueil, France
Radio Galere 88.4 FM, Marseille, France (The Dixie Show)
CJLX FM, Belleville, Ontario, Canada (Sunday Coffee House)
Radio NOF 107 FM, Leeuwarden, Netherlands (Tuesday Night Americana Music Club)

While we still have your attention...please feel free to check out ELSEWHERE BOUND by THE VERY GIRLS, LIVE ANDERSON FAIR by THE WATCHMAN, and RIVER THROUGH THE SUN by PHILIP RODRIGUEZ, right here at CDBABY.COM!



to write a review

Tom Geddie, Buddy Magazine

Too Good Of An Album Not To Be Heard By A Mass Audience!
Texas expatriate, David Rodriguez, shares 14 folk-based, mostly acoustic with electric highlights on his new Proud Heart CD. It's his first US-released CD in more than ten years. Over the years, the Netherlands-based Rodriguez has worked with Ani Di Franco, Nanci Griffith, Michelle Shocked, Lucinda Williams, his daughter, Carrie Rodriguez, and Lyle Lovett. Lovett put Rodriguez' song, "Ballad of a Snow Leopard," on his 1998 double CD, Step Inside This House, a tribute to Texas songwriters. Austin fans voted Rodriguez best Texas songwriter in 1992, 1993 and 1994 in the publication, Third Coast Music. He workd as a lawyer representing Mexican immigrants for a while, and last performed in - and last visited - the United States at the 1995 Kerrville Folk Festival. He has been writing songs, recording at home, performing at summer festivals and in Dutch coffeehouses. Proud Heart was recorded in 1995 but was shelved as the result of a business dispute between Rodriguez and CRS/Rounder. Recovery Recordings bought the rights from CRS saying, "...it was just too good of an album not to be heard by a mass audience." Rodriguez wrote a dozen of the songs, which are consistently strong and sung in a voice that, as someone else pointed out, fits somewhere between Townes Van Zandt and Joe Ely. Noted Dutch bandleader, Ad Van Meurs, contributed one composition, "Rice's Crossing," and adds dobro, lap steel and lead guitar; Italian poet, Luigi Grechi, contributed another, "Chitarrista Cieco" (The Blind Guitarist).

Jim Caligiuri, Austin Chronicle

A Finely Honed Eye For Lyrical Detail
Originally from Houston, David Rodriguez moved to the Netherlands a decade ago. It was around that time he released Proud Heart, but only to his European audience. Before the singer-songwriter left Texas, Rodriguez – Carrie's father – was a favorite at Austin's then-folk mecca, Sixth Street's Chicago House, and listening to these songs it's clear why. He possesses a finely honed eye for lyrical detail while remaining faithful to his Texas musical roots. Some have compared Rodriguez's work to Townes Van Zandt and even Dylan, but Proud Heart mostly evokes the songs of Butch Hancock, with hardscrabble melodies, fleeting visions, and subtle accompaniment. At 14 tracks, the album is a little lengthy; minus a track or two, its impact would be heavier. Still, songs like the aptly spare "Simple Things," the melancholy "The Other Texas," and slowly shuffling "Out of Range" are among Rodriguez's best. The entire album accurately captures the tone of a man on the verge of life changes: optimistic, expectant, and nostalgic, yet suffered with a tinge of sorrow for what he's leaving behind.

Calvin Powers, TaprootRadio.Com

Songs That Sound Like Classical Compositions
David Rodriguez is an singer/songwriter whose writes songs that sound like classical compositions that have a dignified, self-confident feel to them, even when he's singing of heartache and loneliness. Most tracks are arranged in typical singer/songwriter style, the vocals are at the center of the music, accompanied by his acoustic guitar with the occasional drum, bass, accordion, and steel guitar around the edges. Some tracks such as “Chitarrista Cieco” highlight his acoustic guitar skills. Many songs remind me of James McMurty songs. Highlights include “Out Of Range,” “Beautiful Rider,” and “Proud Heart.”

David Cowling, Americana UK

Europe Has Gained Most From This Exchange
The European locals add notes of both realism and romance for us over this side of the Atlantic: American places sometimes seem to take on mythical status, but Milan, Amsterdam, Sheffield and Cologne are known to us. Recorded in Holland by a Texas expatriate, this does seem like a record made with some space and distance, a disconnection and connection with old and new cultures, Texan songwriting and storytelling (performed somewhere between Johnny Cash & Leonard Cohen) but the geography of his heart has been changed. The girls have names like Brechje and there are multiple references to place: the life of a transplantee makes you notice things that would be over-looked by a local. You don't take landscape for granted anymore - you learn a new language in terms of communication, culture, architecture and geography. There are also a lot of references to re-finding love despite the feeling that it had been lost forever. It seems that European sensibilities suit him, though he can't stop comparing Texas to Europe: "The Other Texas" portrays his homeland as "guns and cowboys in pick-up trucks," the mythical Texas, but also as "children with no future, that's the Texas that I know" - the reality that is sadly observed from a distance. On the strength of this record, it seems like Europe has gained most from this exchange.

Valere Sampermans, RootsTime.Be

Proud Heart, David Rodriguez
David Roland Rodriguez is op weg om 55 te worden in 2007. Geboren uit Mexicaanse ouders in Houston, Texas werd hij op 2-jarige leeftijd getroffen door kinderverlamming en sindsdien horen zijn beenbeugel en wandelstok tot zijn vertrouwde beeld. Hij studeerde af als advocaat en verdedigde sindsdien de rechten van de straatarme Mexicaanse immigranten in de rechtzalen en in zijn liedjes. In 1994 trad hij op bij onze noorderburen en hij besloot ter plekke om niet meer terug naar huis te gaan en om vanuit Nederland verder aan zijn reeds indrukwekkende muzikale carrière te bouwen. In 1995 nam hij in Eindhoven de CD "Proud Heart" op die nu - meer dan 10 jaar later - opnieuw uitgebracht werd door Recovery Recordings en voor het eerst in de Amerikaanse shops verkrijgbaar is. Wellicht is dit een goede commerciële zet om de aandacht te vestigen op een in 2007 nieuw te verschijnen live-album "A Winter Moon" (Folkwit Records) waarop ook een vooraanstaande rol is weggelegd voor zijn talentrijke dochter Carrie die violiste is. Tijdens zijn muzikale loopbaan heeft David Rodriguez op podia gestaan naast grote namen als Nanci Griffith, Dar Williams, Steve Young, Ani DiFranco, Michelle Shocked, Lyle Lovett. Lucinda Williams behoort tevens tot zijn vriendenkring. Zij nam tijdens haar recente tournee door Nederland tijdens het optreden in de Amsterdamse Paradiso even de tijd om David in de bloemetjes te zetten voor zijn indrukwekkende talent en carrière. Op één van zijn CD's "The True Cross" hadden ze ooit nog samen "Plane Wreck At Los Gatos" van Woody Guthrie gezongen. Nu even nog wat over het album "Proud Heart" : met een werkelijk betoverende stem weet David Rodriguez ons van song 1 "Out Of Range" tot song 14 "Michoacan" in de ban te houden met prachtige muziek, dito teksten en vocalen in de stijl van de allergrootsten als daar zijn Joe Ely, Townes Van Zandt, Gram Parsons en Steve Young. De eerste keer dat dit album werd uitgebracht heb ik 'm flagrant gemist, daarom ben ik nu zo blij dat ik deze re-release een ereplaatsje in mijn CD-rekjes kan bezorgen. Liefhebbers van singer-songwriter en goede Americana : NU kopen.

Gert-Ove Fridlund, Hallandsposten, Sweden

Latskrivare i exil
David Rodriguez ar en singer/songwriter i exil. Under en Europaturne pa 90-talet tog han farval av Texas och bosatte sig i Holland. Han bor numera i Eindhoven, och dar spelades ocksa "Proud Heart" in. Albumet kan ses som en aterkomst av en artist som tidigare delat scen med Nanci Griffith, Lyle Lovett och Ani di Franco, och aven arbetat nara tillsammans med Lucinda Williams. Texasdofterna bar han med sig har, och nagra av latarna leder tankentill Johnny Cash, daribland "Beautiful Rider." Det mesta ligger i ett gransland mellan rockballader och country. Naturligt nog talar ocksa texterna. Manga rader handlar om de faror och hopp som Rodriguez' exil inneburit. Han ar val vard att lyssna till.

William Michael Smith, Texas Music

It Doesn't Get Much Better Than This
This wistful collection demonstrates why Austin expatriate David Rodriguez is so highly regarded as a songwriter by Lucinda Williams and others. Each line on Proud Heart seems hacked from the school of hard knocks with a dull knife. Songs line "Sheffield Hotel," "Two Truths" and "Beautiful Rider" leave no doubt happiness is fleeting, that trouble is hiding in an alley just around the corner and that for all the joy we find in love, there is also a considerable measure of torment and conflict that goes with the territory. Rodriguez transfers his knocks-and-bruises knowledge into perfect examples of terse Texas songwriting: "Bread and water when I get hungry/A headstrong woman when when I feel blue/A few compadres when I get lonesome/A Texas sunset when I think about you." If lyrics are your thing, it doesn't get much better than this.

Hugo Vogel, Altcountry.nl

Proud Heart, David Rodriguez: Not Forgotten
Proud Heart werd al in 1995 hier te lande uitgebracht. Nu is het album ook in de Verenigde Staten uitgebracht (en dus via internet ook goed in Nederland te verkrijgen). Waarom wordt het album van de man die al ruim 10 jaar in Nederland woont nu ook in de VS in de markt gezet? Omdat David Rodriguez als een van de allerbeste liedjesschrijvers van zijn tijd wordt beschouwd. O.a. Lucinda Williams is een fan van hem. En inderdaad, de zelfgeschreven liedjes op dit album zijn meer dan okay, met Pretty Brechje als uitschieter. De stem en zang van Rodriguez zorgen voor meer problemen. Telkens dezelfde korte uithaal aan het eind van een zin; het gaat naarmate de plaat vordert steeds verder tegenstaan.

Shaun Harvey, Americana Roots.Com

A Must For Any Music Collection
I just recently picked up a copy of Lyle Lovett’s 1998 two-disc release “Step Inside This House”, a collection of songs celebrating the wide-scope of great Texas singer-songwriters that have certainly influenced Lyle’s own career. Lovett does them all justice with songs from familiar greats like Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, and “Robert Earl Keen to tunes from the not so familiar artists like Steve Fromholtz and Eric Taylor. As I was listening to Lyle and driving down the road, a song comes on that really grabs my attention...a tune written by an artist by the name of David Rodriguez called “Ballad of the Snow Leopard and the Tangueray Cowboy”. (I should add that I discover all of this while driving down the road in a February snowstorm, one hand on the wheel, the other flipping through the liner notes, glancing up at the road from time to time to make sure that I haven’t driven completely off the highway). I had no idea at the time who David Rodriguez was, whether he was still alive, if he had any albums out...nothing. Actually there’s a lot about David Rodriguez that I didn’t know. As fate would have it, no more than three days later I’m tearing open a stack of new arrivals and what should I find before me but a new album of songs by David Rodriguez entitled “Proud Heart”. Eureka!! Since that day I’ve learned much about David Rodriguez, but most importantly I have come to love this new album, quite possibly my favorite new release so far for 2006.

As it turns out, David Rodriguez was once a well-known songwriter in certain Texas circles. He was named singer-songwriter of the year three years in a row by Music City Texas, he’s the father of fiddler Carrie Rodriguez of Chip Taylor and Carrie Rodriguez fame, for a time he was a lawyer representing Mexican immigrants, and in 1995 he left Texas to live in the Netherlands and has lived there ever since. The songs on this album represent some of the best song-writing I’ve heard in a very long time and all are delivered with David’s vocal style that falls somewhere between Townes Van Zandt and Joe Ely. Highlights are plentiful from the rolling, tumbling opener “Out of Range” to the subdued beauty and longing of the album’s title track to the spaced-out soaring electric guitar and pounding rhythm that drives the album’s closer “Michoacan”. All told this album is a near classic. All the musicians backing David’s visions are from Holland, lead by the lead guitar work of Ad van Meurs, who wows not by the notes he uses to fill the spaces between the words but in the way he gives space for all these compositions to live and breathe. If you’re a fan of Texas singer songwriters this album is for you, but more importantly if you’re a fan of music with heart David Rodriguez’s “Proud Heart” is a must for any music collection.

Brian T. Atkinson, Country Standard Time

Rodriguez Blends Narrative Flair with Colorful Imagery
David Rodriguez palled around Austin and Houston with Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark in the 1970s. It's obvious that he learned more than a trick or two about songwriting from the masters. Rodriguez blends Clark's narrative flair with Van Zandt's knack for colorful imagery into his own unique tales of yearning and redemption.
"Proud Heart" is a compelling portrait of a Texan searching for his true heartbeat outside the Lone Star State. (Rodriguez moved to the Netherlands in 1995.) The stark "The Other Texas" best captures the moods of a man on the cusp of moving away - it's at once hopeful and sorrowful, excited and nostalgic.
Rodriguez might live a world away today, but he didn't abandon his roots. Songs like "Streets of Old Milan" and "Beautiful Rider" are tailor-made for a songwriting haven like The Cactus Café in Austin, and "Run With Me" embodies the rebellious spirit of his southern Texas origins.
At its most basic level, the whole of "Proud Heart" shows where his daughter, Carrie Rodriguez, inherited her significant musical talents. It also serves as a forceful reminder that songwriters true to their art can be noble craftsmen.
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