Title: “Dustin Pittsley Band”
Artist: Dustin Pittsley Band
Release date: 2016
Favorite track: "Shadow of a Stranger"
Unlike many people, I find my parents really cool.
The Dustin Pittsley Band is based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where they live. They love the band and picked up this signed, self-titled album for me at a concert.
My parents think this music is cool, and if they do, I do. Country blues rock is definitely outside my musical comfort zone, but that’s part of what I like about it.
The first time I listened to this record, I was cooking breakfast with my boyfriend. I’m not sure why, but it felt like the perfect atmosphere for the music. I wouldn’t have had it any other way, and breakfast was good, too.
The focus of the Dustin Pittsley Band is definitely Pittsley’s voice — a stand-out blend of smooth and husky.
“Can’t Find Nothin’” starts this record in a classic country and blues kind of way. It’s a laid-back, but fitting opener. Pittsley reveals some soul in his voice and a catchy chorus.
The second track, “Satellite,” is one of the band’s most popular songs and it takes a similar path as the opening track. I found myself singing the chorus instantly, “Floating like a satellite …”
Quickly, I sensed a theme of feeling lost.
Putting my faith in shooting stars
I still don’t know where we are
‘Cause I’m floating like a satellite
“Just Enough Time” is a bluesy track, stating he has “just enough time to get my story straight.” The lyrics flaunt a lot of old-school sass that feels country western, and I can appreciate that. The bluesy guitar riff would be fun to hear live.
“Rare to Be Right” perked up my ears. It slows down the record dramatically, and I feel like I’ve entered a deserted period of the album.
At the one-minute, 38-second mark, the keyboard comes in with an unexpected fast-paced, jazzy chorus. Then, it slows down again for the second verse. This is a bold song musically, but I admire the experimentation.
The music to “Where I’ve Been” reaffirms my notion that this slightly resembles a jam band. Although the songs mingle around four minutes, I could see them going on longer and sounding differently every time performed live. Pittsley’s voice can rein it in for a tidy blues performance.
“Shadow of a Stranger” reveals the most gravelly part of Pittsley’s vocals. I also hear a stronger twang in some parts than earlier in the album. The lyrics are my favorite, introspective and metaphorical.
There's a shadow of a stranger
It's following me
He’s always been there
We just can’t agree
— “Shadow of a Stranger”
Pittsley’s voice also sounds husky in “For the Ones We Leave Behind.” It again takes an old-school lyrical approach with phrases such as “get on your horse and ride,” “weather this storm” and “meeting with the maker.”
At this point, it’s become obvious why my parents like this band. They’re huge Johnny Cash fans, and I can feel that influence.
“Waves Crashing” concludes the album in a truly rock 'n' roll kind of way. The keyboard, again, takes center stage with a fast-paced rhythm.
“I don’t recognize this world anymore,” Pittsley sings multiple times.
This album art is one of my favorites.
It features a purple and pink sunset backdrop with floral designs and the shield from the Oklahoma State flag. It’s a battle shield of an Osage warrior made from buffalo hide and eagle feathers.
Inside is a gorgeous raspberry-colored vinyl I love to watch spin on the record player. This packaging obviously channels my Oklahoma roots, but it also has a tinge of femininity to it that contrasts with the music in an artistically positive way.