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Music Review - `That Kinda Guy ` by Mike Dekle (bm)

Mike Dekle - That Kinda Guy  (click on image to watch video)

 8 April 2019

 

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Athens, Ga.-based songwriter Mike Dekle’s career spans multiple decades and has impacted different styles of country music. Pop-accessible stars (Kenny Rogers), living legends (Hank Thompson) and throwbacks to simpler times (Keith Whitley) pointed a wider audience to his songs in the ‘80s. Since then, the mainstream’s changing tides kept him afloat through recordings by the likes of Tracy Byrd, Joe Nichols and fellow Georgians Colt Ford and Brantley Gilbert.

New album That Kinda Guy, named after one of Dekle’s co-writes with Ford and Tyler Farr, celebrates his 21 st century team-ups with country rappers and pop-country products of his home state. Rest assured that these stripped-down takes highlight a well-versed lyricist without the pitfalls of modern production, so don’t flee if you’re not exactly in Ford and Gilbert’s target audience. Besides, the album proves Gilbert’s talents as a co-writer with the ‘90s country flashback “Like I Don’t Have a Care,” which sounds like old Tim McGraw in the best possible way.

Standout cuts include the regret-filled “Too Many Too’s,” the playful “That’s What She Said,” the spiritually uplifting “Music’s What I See” and twangy trip down memory lane “God Made a Farmer.”

These tracks and others reflect the storytelling range of a veteran songwriter with a talented cast of collaborators, including Brantley’s guitarist Jess Franklin and rising solo star Danielle Johnson. Like his music, Dekle’s career reflects different touchstones in modern country music history. After years of trips to Nashville and stacks of rejected demo tapes, Dekle befriended Roger Bowling, writer of “Coward of the County” and other hits. In 21 st century terms, real recognized real, with Bowling’s friendship and a similar partnership with writer/producer Byron Hill positioning Dekle’s song “Scarlet Fever” to become a top five hit for Rogers.

Considering that the pickiest country music fans tend to love songwriters to the stars (Jamey Johnson, Brandy Clark, etc.), this 18-song collection should suit CD collections built on either country hits or Americana underdogs.

 

Bobby Moore

 

 

 

Bobby Moore

 

 

 


 

 

 

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