Beginning of Things is only singer-songwriter-guitarist Charlie Worsham’s second album (his debut, Rubberband, was released in 2013), but the 13 cuts, nine of which he co-wrote, are a skillful, dazzling array of musical genres that suggest the work of a seasoned veteran. One of the LP’s most instantly likable tunes, “Southern by the Grace of God,” penned by Worsham with Luke Dick and Shane McAnally, opens with nimble, jazzy guitar work, a product of his studies at Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music, but lyrically reflects his Mississippi upbringing.
The end result is a refreshing bit of progressive country that doesn’t stray far from the genre’s main road. As Worsham sings, “I’m tellin’ y’all this delta drawl is stuck to me like buzz on a honeybee,” his youthful tenor swells into a tasty little yodel, while the tempo gets a little bit quicker and the percussion more prominent until the final minute evolves into a dizzying jam.
Beginning of Things also includes the soulful, romantic “Call You Up,” and its fuzzy, funky instrumentation; the Roger Miller-Bob Dylan hybrid of “Lawn Chair Don’t Care”; and the smirking hip-hop and alt-rock vibe of “Birthday Suit.” Worsham even manages to channel Buck Owens and Buckaroos’ guitar god Don Rich simultaneously with the goofy twang of “Take Me Drunk.”
Co-produced by Frank Liddell and Eric Masse, Beginning of Things will be released April 21st and is now available for pre-order. Five new songs from the album (including “Southern by the Grace of God”) will be available at all digital services beginning Friday, January 27th, and will be included as instant downloads with each pre-order.
Here’s the full track list of Beginning of Things:
2. “Please People Please”
3. “Southern by the Grace of God”
4. “Call You Up”
5. “Lawn Chair Don’t Care”
6. “Only Way to Fly”
7. “Old Times Sake”
8. “Cut Your Groove”
9. “I Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere”
10. “The Beginning of Things”
11. “Birthday Suit”
13. “Take Me Drunk”