The debut CD from Andy Shernoff has hit the streets! “Don’t Fade Away” is a 4-song EP, released by CD Baby. Extended plays have a curious history of being the red-headed stepson of records. Halfway between a 45 and an LP, they usually served as ways to get the public to buy the same old for a 3rd time. Andy explodes tradition here, with 4 brand-new songs, in 4 different styles. These tunes, along with another batch that’s scheduled to hit the streets next spring, were recorded in the fall of 2011 in Springfield, MO, with the country’s greatest bar band, the Skeletons, acting as back-up. The Skeletons have always served them up fast and short, firm believers in the SWAT team approach of “get in, get out, and don’t give the audience time to get bored.” This EP adheres to that concept, with the whole shebang clocking in at an economical 12:09.
Batting lead-off is “Let’s Get the Band Back Together,” which is one of the funniest things Andy has been part of since “The Dictators Go Girl Crazy.” It’s very glam and catchy, with a call and response of “Come on!” that is total ear candy. I’m thinking the over/under for feather boas in the accompanying video will be 3.
Next up is “Laugh and Walk Away.” The riff and overall vibe of the song is reminiscent of the Allmans’ “Sweet Melissa,” which is not at all a bad thing. Although it provides a home to an excellent guitar solo from D. Clinton Thompson, the tune itself is a bit of a throwaway. Sorry, I’m compelled by the umpire within me to call ’em the way I see ’em.
The next 2 tunes are the highlights of the disc to these ears, and treats to anyone who was lucky enough to attend any of the Lakeside Lounge (RIP) “rehearsals.” “Hey Boys” is the “Manifest Destiny” chestnut, sped way up and reinterpreted the way the Everly Brothers woulda done it. Just as she did at every Lakeside performance of the song, Tricia Scotti steals the show here with her soaring harmony vocal.
Last up is “Don’t Fade Away,” Andy’s heartbreaker about losing his mother to the ravages of Alzheimer’s. It is a sweet and beautiful tribute, and if you aren’t verklempt after hearing it, then buddy, you have no soul. This song speaks for everyone who is on the north side of 40 and is making the transition to parental caretaker.
So there you go, 4 excellent new tunes for 4 bucks. It’s available right now from CDbaby.com, and comes with Andy’s personal money back guarantee, which you are not going to need.
— Salvi C.