Bobby Charles

Secrets of the Heart

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Hopefully, this disc will prevent the writer of such songs as "Walking to New Orleans," "See You Later Alligator," "I Can't Quit You," and "The Jealous Kind" from being known only as a songwriter. Bobby Charles is a writer of superb talent and stylistic versatility. This disc includes the R&B smash for Delbert McClinton, "I Can't Quit You," the south of the border "Angel Eyes," the "loungey" (in the best sense) "But I Do," and the second-line soul of "Party Town" standing out; several new tracks, like "You" and "I Don't Want to Know," have the potential to join the ranks of Charles classics. To bring out the best in these songs, he has received the support of a stellar cast of players from New Orleans and beyond, who treat the songs with the respect that their writer deserves. There are no mediocre songs on this disc; some may not be to your taste, but each is well crafted and performed with care. There is also a bonus at the end of the disc after a two-minute pause -- a better-than-average interview that lasts about 15 minutes. It's nice the first time, but it is a pain when it comes up on shuffle mode.

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