Wretch Like Me 4:230:00/4:23
Third-Person Biographical Section
Texas-born singer-songwriter Austin Mayse has returned to the studio for his second full-length album, Bridges & Kerosene. Produced by Hill Country music ace Chris Beall and engineered by Ron Flynt, it features songs that Mayse has brought to soulful solo life onstage in recent years, fleshed out to a fuller potential by legendary Texas musicians including Geoff Queen, Rich Brotherton, Tina & Walt Wilkins, Ron Flynt, Harmoni Kelley, John Chipman, Beall, as well as 4x CMA Musician of the Year, Jenny Fleenor on violin.
Songs like "Wretch Like Me," "Rattlesnake" and "Sober Light" come heavy with insight and philosophy; lighter fare like "Leave Your Leavin'" and "On My Way" lay things out more simply, weaving bits of wit and metaphor into catchy, breezier tracks that draw on the sounds and influences of Lone Star State music titans like Rusty Wier, Jerry Jeff Walker, Walt Wilkins and BW Stevenson. The legacy of Wier in particular informs Mayse's music; Mayse befriended the genre-hopping legend of a singer-songwriter early in his career, traveling and gigging with him extensively. In fact, Wier's last recording studio visit before his 2009 passing was a guest vocal on Mayse's debut album Devil On My Shoulder.
The years since then have seen Mayse come and go from the live-music scene as real-life ups and downs demanded. Having played trumpet in orchestras professionally since his teens, he's backed up bands of various genres and gigged with his friends in fellow under-the-radar indie act The Great American Boxcar Chorus along with picking up his guitar for solo gigs and song swaps around his home state. With fresh material comes fresh momentum: Mayse is excited to share his newest work to receptive audiences anywhere the road might take him, whether that's in person or on the finely-crafted, fully realized record Bridges & Kerosene.
- Mike Ethan Messick