Ted Russell Kamp


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Journeyman country musician Ted Russell Kamp, whose day job is playing bass behind Shooter Jennings, has become noticeably prolific as a solo artist of late, with Divisadero being his third album in less than two years, following NorthSouth and Nashville Fineline. A host of familiar country-rock singer/songwriters come to mind as the album plays -- Rodney Crowell, Steve Earle, Gram Parsons. All of those predecessors hailed from the South, while Kamp's mailing addresses have included New York and Seattle, along with the present one, Los Angeles. But his rusty, Southern-accented tenor, recounting tales of travel and romance over arrangements that lean heavily on pedal and lap steel guitar parts, suggests he's spent very little time north of the Mason-Dixon Line. Kamp is a good genre songwriter, especially when he's writing about what he knows; "Music Is My Mistress" and "Another One Night Stand" (the latter referring to a gig, not a girl) are the best-realized numbers here, and "The Road Keeps Getting Longer" sounds heartfelt. He has fun doing duets with his employer on the comically cautionary change of pace "Better Before You Were Big Time" and his employer's mother, Jessi Colter, on "Looking for Someone." With those additions, this is a solid album of singer/songwriter country-rock that should please fans of Crowell, Earle, and Parsons, even if it isn't quite in their class.

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