Now Playing: Randy Palmer’s ‘Deeper Water’ 

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Randy Palmer
Image courtesy of Broken Jukebox Media



Randy Palmer has just released a new album. It’s titled Deeper Water. But first, for those of you not yet familiar with the artist in question, a bit o’ background.

Randy Palmer

Image courtesy of Randy Palmer

Texan Randy Palmer is a singer-songwriter and musician. According to his official website, he is a cross between a poet and a painter…scraping, sanding, priming, make-it- like-new painter.  Palmer “has roots deep inside a bucket. A son of a painting paint contractor, [he] has an ingrown desire to make things beautiful.”

Thanks to his older brother, Rick, he learned to play guitar as a child. Once his mother exposed him to the music of Johnny Rivers, he was hooked. Soon after discovering how to play “Maybelline”, he partnered with Berkley Dawson to put new lyrics to such songs as “Downtown”, “When I’m 64”, and even “Strawberry Fields.”  He has been hooked on songwriting ever since. 

His rockin’ resume includes three precious platters including his much-praised platter, Waterline, which dropped in 2014. He has performed live in venues all over the country. 

Signature Sound

Randy Palmer’s signature sound is a mix of music genres including Americana, country, and folk. His influences include the Beatles, John Denver, James Taylor, Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, B W Stevenson, Michael Martin Murphy, and Jerry Jeff Walker.

Deeper Water

Deeper Water is a 12-track album. According to a recent communique, this project “was started before the pandemic, and Palmer” and producer Merel Bregante “pushed through the challenges that the next few years would present to finish it.” The songs are all original and written or co-written by Palmer. 

On this disc, Palmer leads the way on acoustic guitar and vocals. He is backed by an assortment of other artists including Mark Epstein (electric bass, double bass, and fretless bass), Michael Dorrien (electric and acoustic guitar), Cody Braun (fiddle, mandoline, and harmonica), Peter Wasner (piano, keyboards, and B3), Dave Pearlman (dobro and pedal steel guitar), Dirje Childs (cello), Trevor Smith (banjo), Sarah Pierce, Betsey Palmer, and Merri Palmer (background vocals), and producer Merel Bregante (drums, percussion, and background vocals).

Track by Track

The album opens with the upbeat “Somewhere Down The Line.” It works well enough as an album opener and gets your attention but only foreshadows everything that’s yet to come.

The second selection is “Carry On.” This one, at heart, speaks to the perseverance of the common man. Indeed, it is a theme that is common to other cuts as well. It is both poignant and light-hearted.  David Webb guests on keys.

The next number is “The Life They Are Living.” This is a song about how things are for many. Indeed, it probably is all too familiar to too many people and is a bit of a life lesson, to boot. 

The travelin’ tune “High Plains” was co-written with Randall Lewis Brown. It’s the first example of Palmer’s collaborative abilities. If his childhood teachers heard this, they would undoubtedly say he “works well with others.” Billy Bright guests on mandolin and David Webb encores on keys.

The early fan fave “Welcome To My Home” follows here. This seemingly biographical song-story has a certain subtle beauty within the melody and a sense of inviting warmth to it.

 The sixth selection is “Sixty Years of Love.” This one will pull at your heartstrings as it focuses on the potential loss of a loved one. Sadly, these days, it is not nearly as universal a concept as it once was. This musical prayer of sorts makes one think it should be again though.   

The seventh songful serving is “Summer of 65.” This track is a musical memory of sorts that nostalgically reflects on Palmer’s childhood, and, in truth, many others of his generation. It’s a pleasantly positive piece that features a sincere sense of fun to it.  

“White Dog” is the second song co-written with Randall Lewis Brown. Mentions of musical metaphors aside, it sounds like Brown and Palmer enjoy playing together and that, much like the previous pairing, makes it an effective, nigh-charming, tuneful team-up.     

The title track “Deeper Water” is next. It’s a clever tune about fishing, bonding, and sharing simple wisdom and life lessons too. This musical life lesson is soundtrack ready for sure.

 Also included here is “Echoes From the Past.” While a song of a failed relationship is not exactly unexpected, Palmer makes it clear this one is quite personal. It works because of his personal perspective and presentation.

“Venus Chases the Moon” was co-written with Randall Lewis Brown It is the third and final example of what Palmer can do working with other artists.      

The closing cut is “Choose Love.” This one musically presents the many joys of being a parent. It presents a positive, deceptively simple (albeit all too often missed) message that perhaps is needed now more than ever.   

Overall… 

Overall, this album is an effective, updated example of Palmer’s life experiences and how he imaginatively transforms them into songs. He focuses on precious if not always perfect personal moments while the listeners empathize if not downright recognize the commonalities with their own lives. Palmer, much like a house painter, strips down life events and offers onlookers a new perspective on family, partnerships, and the human condition. So check out Randy Palmer’s Deeper Water and experience “Echoes From the Past.”