Cathy Grier + the Troublemakers – I’m All Burn
CD Review by Cora Price, Boogety Shoe Blues
I love when I get to support Women in Blues! It was with great pleasure that I received the new Cathy Grier CD, I’m All Burn, released in 2020. Unlike many of Cathy’s past recordings, this is not a solo album, but a collaborative effort by some top-notch musicians she met after moving to Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin in 2016.
Cathy & the Troublemakers bring together sixteen songs for your listening pleasure. The majority of the work was composed by Cathy Grier, with one cover that holds my favour, Ode to Billy Joe. The band does great justice to this old favorite.
The recording took place at Make Sausage Music and Steve Hamilton assisted with the production, and was the Ninja editor (as per the CD back cover).
The title cut, I’m All Burn, was inspired by the #MeToo movement and addresses the ongoing challenge women have in getting equality in pay and in many other ways of day-to-day life. To quote Cathy in an interview she did with Guitar Girl Mag, “The lyrics shed light on the fact that women and girls still aren’t given the chance to walk in a world with the same freedom and opportunities as men.”
The addition of horns on this CD, especially to some of Cathy’s older originals, is honey to the ears. The music flows well, the vocals are top notch and the overall impression of this CD is well produced, well recorded and superior quality music.
Rounding out the sound is Bassist Tony Menzer, Larry Byrne on organ, Jim Ohlschmidt on guitar (who compliments Cathy’s style so well), guest soloist Greg Koch and features five harmonica players: Steve Cohen, Johnny Orlock, Billy Flynn (who also played guitar on two tracks), Pat MacDonald, and Howard Levy. Backing vocals are by Deirdre Fellner and Liv Mueller.
The last cut “Cathy’s Bike Song”, features Cathy playing a four string Rose cigar box guitar. YouTube video: https://youtu.be/O6rClfpjfac. A short ditty that is sweet.
Four of the songs have credit going to the Steel Bridge Creative Foundation, a Holiday Music Hotel festival, where songwriters and musicians gather up to 3 times a year, to write, produce and present new material.