Monday, January 30, 2017

Get To Know Your Chuck Prophet

I need to gush about Chuck Prophet every few months or so. It usually begins with the iPod and some random song, or sometimes it's right after I get his brilliant newsletter. Yes, I need to be reminded. Chuck Prophet isn't always on my radar and he should be. He should be on everyone's radar.

This week, it was his song "You Got Me Where You Want Me" from his record, "The Age Of Miracles." It popped up again, and again I was floored by how powerful it felt it its simplicity. The chorus is basically the title sung three times, as a call and answer with singer and keyboardist, Stephanie Finch, with the last bit of the second line overlapping into a harmony on the third line. You might be thinking, "Yeah? So?" For my ears, that small detail feels like jolt of electricity. It's smart record-making.

The song itself runs about three and half minutes, and Prophet's delivery is as it always is-partly sung and partly confessed, a style, that again, for my ears, works wonders. Just about every song on every one of Chuck Prophet's records keeps me glued to the narrative, and I'm certain it's because of his attention to detail and his careful phrasing.

Prophet's string of release for Yep Roc, beginning with 2009's "Let Freedom Ring," and continuing with 2012's "Temple Beautiful," and  2014's "Night Surfer" are all worthy of your time, as are all of his releases.

Chuck Prophet knows how to make records. There are shades of Dylan, Motown, girl groups, New Orleans soul and straight ahead rock and roll. Prophet could be a convincing punk, too.

His new record, "Bobby Fuller Died For Your Sins" hits on February 10th. Get familiar with his stuff now so you can dig in to the new one with some real excitement.

This one below is from "Temple Beautiful."



Thanks for this reminder Sa;. I first heard of Chuck Prophet reading Steve Almond's great book -- "Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life."

Looking forward to the new record.

whattawino said...

Oh Chuck yeah!...Can't wait for the new release. Everyone should know Chuck Prophet, he'll make your life better!

rick said...

Wow,these songs are so great! I'm embarrassed to say that I don't know his stuff at all, but I will now devote a good chunk of time to catching up. Thanks, Sal.

hpunch said...

And don't forget The Raisins In The Sun.
Jules Shear and Chuck Prophet, a Burning Wood supergroup.

Shriner said...

Chuck Prophet was one of the artists your blog turned me on to Sal. I always thank you for that.

jmills said...

Just finished a road trip to Saranac Lake,which gave me the opportunity to listen to Bobby Fuller going & coming. Another gem by Chuck. He's finally coming east this March & I plan on going up to Northhampton see him at The Iron Horse Grill. Northampton is a fun town, great vibe,music & food.I'd imagine it's your type of town Sal. Thanks for a great blog, always a great read.