Friday, May 12, 2017

David Starr – The Head and Heart

David Starr – The Head and Heart 

Starr has shared the stage with such artists as John Oates (Hall & Oates), Richie Furay (Buffalo Springfield, Poco), Kenny Edwards (Linda Ronstadt, Karla Bonoff), John McEuen (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) and numerous others. He has opened for Survivor, Clint Black, Travis Tritt, Restless Heart, The Marshall Tucker Band and The Guess Who. With Arkansas roots and Colorado wings, David Starr has been making music since the age of 10. He has a new six-song EP entitled The Head And Heart produced and arranged by John Oates.

Having played with so many, it’s no surprise to hear that John Oates would go from playing on his last album to producing this one. But it doesn’t mean it happens every day. You just have to let that be and fall on the ears where it may or may not, depending on whether or not you know their sound and where it comes together. But this is not about the producer, it’s just that if you’ve been around long enough you cannot deny his involvement. It helps the profile as well, but it’s really all David Starr on this EP, as much as featuring such a producer’s sound, which does come out excellent.

There is no time wasted as the beautiful “Edge Of The World” finds itself at your feet with a blissful drawl from his seasoned voice. A vocal that pretty much rules this EP, but doesn’t come without some choice music behind it. The acoustic guitar playing on these tunes is very subtle, but perfectly placed where you can’t forget it. Melodies that produce instant memory. This is a tale about female growth And believing in its magic and how it makes life better to be around if you give her the chance. If it doesn’t sink in, repeat will always do. As this one is as good as the other five tracks.

There isn’t a lot to be criticized about David Starr in general, nor to be found anymore on the title track “The Head and Heart,” than any of the others. It will take you away with its hypnotic lyrics and Starr’s gentle way of conveying relative aspects of life and interacting around them. Burning houses have nothing left to do but fall, and that is what he gets across to me. But a good song can be sliced numerous ways, and none of these tracks forget that. And that makes way for a re-make of “California Dreaming.” And this isn’t something you re-arrange without a lot of guts, and it’s not the best moment on the record for me, but worth anyone’s time to hear this way.

I’d rather hear a straight-forward cover, but I also don’t see how anyone could call this a bad projection or anything. It’s just not what you’d expect, with tracks as good as “Waiting In The Dark” to immediately engulf it. With its positive mindedness cutting through a negative subject at the end of the day. It’s a cool track to contrast the downsides of playing a cover, albeit a fine one. This has some great guitar playing as well. It’s a great way to come back in the middle of the EP. Or, maybe it just works that well for me at a critical point. But it’s just one opinion about it. An original would have been just as good of a choice though.

But he keeps going strong with the adventurous “I’ve Come For You” and the appropriately titled closing track “Dancing With My Pride.”  And these two don’t exactly go together but evenly deliver along the same quality level as the rest, with no debating their importance. They also help beg the question where has David Starr been, and answer it in one fell swoop. As well as it must satisfy any longtime fans, of which I am not but will be delving back, as this turns me onto a legacy that I was not previously aware of. So, it is also a great entry level point to Davis Starr, although he’s been around all this time.



Randy Jones

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