American singer-songwriter and musician Graham Bramblett has a new album. It’s titled The Great Inbetween and drops on July 17th. But first, for those not yet familiar with the artist in question, a bit o’ background.
According to his official website, Nashville-based, native Texan Graham Bramblett graduated from college in Missouri. He was soon “paying as much attention to writing and performing songs as much as his school.” After he graduated, he relocated to Nashville and spent time on Music Row.
He suffered from burnout and headed to the Twin Cities in 2010. He said: “I ended up in St. Paul because I had family there and it seemed like a good place to reboot. Music had become a chore and I was out of tune with Nashville. Mostly, I had forgotten why I started writing songs in the first place.”
His rockin’ resume also includes his debut disc, Under The Lights, which dropped in 2016 and the 2018 follow-up, Standard Harmony. His song “Want To” was deemed “’The Song Of The Day” by indie radio station 89.3/ The Current. He moved back to Tennessee in 2018 in time for the Americana Fest.
He continues to perform live across the country. He recalls: “I unpacked the U-Haul and then met up with 8 of my buddies from Minnesota that night. I got lucky, very lucky that the timing worked out.”
Graham Bramblett’s signature sound is a mix of music genres. It includes Americana, country, and folk.
The Great Inbetween
This EP includes 6 tracks. The subjects vary from first date perceptions to tuneful tips of the hat to childhood heroes. Here Bramblett leads the way on guitars and vocals. He is backed by Ken Wilson (steel guitar), Andrew Golden (trumpet), co-producer Elliot Blaufuss (Rhodes guitar), and Sarah Morris, Kensie Coppin, and co-producer Davis Corley (background vocals).
Track by Track
The CD opens on “Tom T. Hall T-Shirt.” This is the first single off the CD. While the album is generally stripped down, the song remains a great example of his musical style.
Bramblett recalls the origin of the cut: “I saw a post on Instagram of a guy wearing a Tom T. Hall T-Shirt and my brain said that’s a great song title- Tom T Hall T-Shirt. I searched and no one had written that title so I decided I should.”
Bramblett co-wrote “Rain on The Roof” with Corley. It’s got a touch of prettiness to it meant to represent the sound of rain. Still, Bramblett’s no-nonsense vocals balance things out so it all works.
The slow song “Stickers” was also co-written with Corley. Oddly, there are people out there who will relate to this song both literally and figuratively. It’s a lyrical life lesson.
Bramblett picks things up again with “The One That I Want.” This is the first example of what he can do as a solo songwriter. The trumpet is a surprise but perhaps that is one of the elements that help make it a good road trip song.
The next number is a pensive piece titled “What Do You Do.” Not to be confused with Michael Sterling’s 2002 song of the same name, this bittersweet bit is an original composition co-written with Johnson. This one is soundtrack-ready.
The album endnote, co-written with Williams and Lewis, is “You Can’t Dance.” Here’s a fun one that probably plays well with live crowds. Bramblett exits on a high note. Good for him.
Overall . . .
Overall, this album is a stronger sampling of his songwriting abilities because it features less flash and production than his previous platters. There’s no bass, no electric guitar, and no drums. Graham notes that any percussion you hear was generally “improvised on the spot.”
Thus, unlike his first two releases, there is no full band. It is slightly rawer and somewhat stripped down in comparison. Graham Bramblett’s The Great Inbetween because it’s a good listen even if “You Can’t Dance.”