Randy McAllister
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Randy McAllister


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"Flying High While Staying Low Down"

For the real lover of roots music there is the veteran Texan singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Randy McAllister. I discovered him five years ago with the album "Givers and Takers" (2002). Later I noticed him working to break down the barriers in roots music. He was working hard to deal with the complexities of the traditional music industry and the greed of record companies. "Flying High While Staying Low Down" (2006) is a collectors item, with tracks from the albums "Dope Slap Soup", "Temporary Fixes" and "A Little Left of Center". You will find some familiar McAllister tracks. But what is most striking regarding this CD is the rich complement of talent in the band with guitarists Mike Morgan, Jim Suhler, Stephen Bruton and Matt Woodburn. McAllister makes hot, pounding, solid music that automatically makes you want to turn the volume button up. What a music. Fantastic. McAllister crosses genre. You can hear country, blues, soul, and mostly an unique mix of Randy McAllister's own style. He matches expressive stories to original melodies for traditional sounding songs, that are filled with robust doses of humor. Listening to "Flying High While Staying Low Down" makes you want to play it all day, everyday again and again. Every time you hear it you discover something new, subtle, and more refined. It never loses intensity. For instance, as soon as one guitar solo is completed an another solo begins building the excitment without disruption.. Indescribably beautifully. McAllister delivers a rough, but relaxed sound. Together the musicians combine to produce a beautiful sound. It is an amazingly beautiful album. I have to say, I can't find a bad track. In other words: go to the store and listen to "Flying High While Staying Low Down" with your headphones on. You won't walk, but run like a crazy after you hear the second track to buy this album. Really not a lot is new in "Flying High While Staying Low Down", but the album contains sixteen tracks rooted in a deep, strong Southern tradition without superfluous fringe that would hide the power of the album. But I have to warn you that the tracks cover a range of emotions: that make you want the album even more... Briefly: Randy McAllister wrote everything himself and has a style which mixes blues, rock, country, gospel, Tex-Mex and zydeco (reminding you of a mix of Doug Sahm, John Hiatt and Delbert McClinton). Randy McAllister has found a place of his own in American music. When you listen to him you are listening to the best America has to offer. This man is a master of Americana." - Translated from Dutch - - ROOTSTIME

"Flying High While Staying Low Down"

Hang on to your seats! "Flying High While Staying Low Down" is truly the best of Randy McAllister. With tracks selected from three of his hottest albums, the combination highlights the rich melodies and attention grabbing lyrics that make Randy McAllister the latest, greatest Texas talent. Each of the tracks serves to broaden the spectum that is Randy McAllister. If you've missed this Grammy Nominee, time to tune in. Randy may be one of the hottest multi-instrumentalist, singer/song writers performing today. For anyone that wants to discover overwhelming talent that just makes you feel good. Listen closely, you just heard the thunder clap of a music legend!" - World Entertainment Network

"Randy McAllister"

"Here's a disc of rock-tinged urban blues, Texas style. In his second album for JSP, songwriter/harmonica player McAllister plays exciting harp in the electrified Little Walter style. His songs are filled with the smell of cigarette smoke and beer, and many of them, even the slow ones, have the hard-driving edge of a band determined to blow off the cares of the working day. They play mainly in the postwar style, with a couple of tunes reflecting the soul influences of the '60s and jump blues of the '40s. McAllister has a voice which can only be described as unique; it has a certain bottom to it that makes it sound like it belongs to a 300-pound man. The leadoff tune, "Eat, Drink and Sleep," has the band doing a humorous line-by-line commentary on his vocals. Lines like "You must have been eating bullets for breakfast, 'cause you've been shooting off you mouth" underscore his humor, while "Duct Tape and Bailing Wire" is a salute to two of his favorite items from the hardware store, which help him hold things together. In "When Does the Good Stuff Happen," he bemoans doing right and having nothing much to show for it. All of this is fleshed out by Mike Morgan and Robin Slyer's guitar work and a tight band playing with rock sensibilities. - All Music Guide


"When I first saw the title of Randy McAllister's latest effort, "Dope Slap Soup", I wasn't quite sure what to expect. But upon listening through the entire CD a second time, I realized I had been handed a big, thick slice of great Texas blues and roots music. McAllister has surrounded himself with a host of fine musicians on this recording and their playing is uniformly excellent throughout the disc. Even though McAllister is a fine harp player, his playing doesn't dominate this record. Instead he lets his very soulful vocals, top notch song-writing from his own pen and that of fellow Texan Mike Morgan, and the aforementioned fine studio band carry the music along on a rousing trip through Texas. Do yourself a favor and give this disc a thorough listen, and you'll be very pleasantly surprised. I will be spinning this one for a long time to come." - WEVL, Memphis

"Flying High"

What an honor for us here at www.Mary4Music.com - we now can add "GRAMMY NOMINEE", to the ever growing list of wonderful musicians that we've had the pleasure of promoting. "FLYING HIGH WHILE STAYING LOW DOWN" is RANDY MCALLISTER'S first release since "GIVERS AND TAKERS", the disc that was nominated for a "GRAMMY AWARD" in 2002. It's a Best of Compilation with five previously unreleased songs from his upcoming CD - which, from the sounds of these tracks, already appears to be a winner.

Obviously, with songs from several discs, the players on this recording are many. However, since being good enough to play on the disc certainly warrants being acknowledged, please allow me to introduce the talented bunch. Joining RANDY MCALLISTER, vocals and harmonica are: MATT WOODBURN, TODD BLALOCK, MIKE MORGAN, ANDREW "JR BOY" JONES, JIM SUHLER, STEPHEN BRUTON, ROLLO SMITH and MITCHEL SMITHEY, guitars; TIM ALEXANDER, piano organ and accordion; CHUCK "POPCORN" LOUDEN, RON THOMPSON and JIMMY MORGN, drums; SONNY COLLIE, RHANDY SIMMONS and MARK GOWAN, bass; BENITA ARTEBERRY-BURNS and ANGIE MCWHIRTHER, background vocals.

From the list of CD's I see these original songs were taken from - "TEMPORARY FIXES", "A LITTLE LEFT OF CENTER" and "DOPE SLAP SOUP", it appears that the latter would be the name of RANDY'S upcoming new disc. Therefore, I'm going to go straight to those tracks, some of which seem to have a common sound - Gospel & Country Blues.

"CLEAR MY HEAD" is highlighted by amazing vocals. RANDY and BENITA are a match made for listening and they do a masterful job on his duet. The very well written lyrics need to be paid close attention to. It's a therapeutic song about how everyday things can get to you, as they do to all of us, and when they do, you've got to just take a deep breath and clear your head. MATT and TODD supply some great guitar licks in front of some great rhythm from CHUCK, SONNY and TIM.

Very happily so, "CLOSE YOUR EYES" is lots more of the same. More great vocals from RANDY and BENITA and more spiritual and very uplifting lyrics from this amazing songwriter. Once again, about another of real life's importance's - needing someone to be there for you when you need them to be. How comforting is it knowing someone will be there to hold you up, when you're thinking about giving it up? If you don't already know, hear them sing it and you will. Man if this one doesn't make you feel good then you need to listen to "CLEAR MY HEAD" a few more times.

Going back about years ago, one of my favorite LP's was called "CHICKEN LICKIN" by a band so funky, they had to be called FUNK, INC. RANDY'S "CHICKEN' YOUR FIXIN" (from Temporary Fixes) is so full of funk, it brought that record to mind. With RHANDY on bass and CHUCK on drums laying a great foundation, and TODD supplying lots of funkified slide, it all provided a nice back drop for RANDY to lead the way on his funky harp and vocals.

"THE CHAIN" (also from Temporary Fixes) features more great magic from RANDY and BENITA. It's a typical RANDY MCALLISTER written song which features yet another wonderful message. This one is about being "the first link in the chain". It's all about being a leader vs a follower. Be the first to jump in, the first to make a move and be the first to act, etc. This time, RON, SONNY and MIKE provide the excellent drums, bass and guitar.

"WHAT MOVES YOU" (from A Little Left Of Center) is another one of my personal favorites. It opens with some very hot piano by TIM and the guitar work by JIM is some of the best on the disc. With BENITA once again joining RANDY, it's an automatic that the vocals are once again another of the tracks highlights. "WHAT MOVES YOU" will move you.

"WANDERING SHEPPERD" (also from A Little Left Of Center), is a very soft ballad that features only RANDY on vocals and TIM ALEXANDER on piano. A bit different than anything else, but very nice nevertheless.

If you thought that by mentioning this song at the end, I saved the best for last - I'll give you no argument. "WHY" (once again, from A Little Left Of Center), totally blew me away. It's another BENITA/MCALLISTER vocal and harmonizing masterpiece. On top of that it has more absolutely magnificent lyrics and the music is perfect.

Other tracks not mentioned are "THE GIRL AIN'T RIGHT / Dope Slap Soup, "TAKE ME OUT OF NEW ORLEANS" / Temporary Fixes, "THE SOUND OF LEAVING" / A Little left Of Center, "BAPTIST CHURCH" / Dope Slap Soup, "DRINKIN' TO PREVENT A KILLING" / A Little left Of Center), "NEVER HAD A LOT OF FAITH" / Temporary Fixes), "MAN WHO WENT FOR CIGARETTES" / Temporary Fixes", "STRONGER VICE / BETTER HOBBY" / Temporary Fixes and "HARD HEADED" / Dope Slap Soup.

Musically, I'm not one to cross genres. Typically, "If it ain't blues, I ain't listening. Having said that, and although there was enough blues on this disc to strike my fancy, regardless of anyone's taste, this disc has so much class and so much quality it should be loved by all.

Check out RANDY MCALLISTER @ http://www.randymcallister.com an tell him ya heard lots of good stuff about him from the "Blewzzman" - Review by Peter "Blewzzman" Lauro, - www.Mary4Music.com - Mary4Music.com

"Randy McAllister - Temporary Fixes"

"Always a joy to hear Randy and double joy to review his work. Eleven excellent tracks of Texas blues as they should be by someone who knows what he is doing. Not only is McAllister one heck of a songwriter, he is also an outstanding performer and harmonica player. My first time to see him was at the old Blue Cat Blues, back in the old days when the world was a pretty place and you could still park in Deep Ellum without having your windows redecorated in the shattered glass motif. I remember being so blown away by his energy and ability. Randy gives every song his whole heart and soul. He puts a lot into it. I still feel that way listening to this new album. Randy is heads above the rest of the pack with his own unique style and presence. Check out how he handles a tune like "That Chicken You're Fixing" or "Never Had A Lot Of Faith". McAllister really knows how to work a song for maximum effect. Lots of good people helping out Randy on the album. Guitars from folks like Andrew 'Jr. ...
I think when it comes right down to it; the best thing about listening to McAllister is the way he pulls you into a song. It's the voice, as well as what he is saying. And like the best of all music, there is always some nugget of universal truth in the lyrics. There is always some unifying tinge of certainty that he is singing of things we know and understand. I think that's the real gift. Check out the new one from Randy McAllister and enjoy!
- - Bill Fountain - March 2005 Southwest Blues
- Southwest Blues


Ain't Like The Movies 0 Album
Dope Slap Soup - Album
Flying High While Staying Low Down - Album
Givers and Takers - Album
A Little Left of Center - Album
Temporary Fixes - Album
Grease Grit Dirt and Spit - Album
Double Rectified Busthead - Album
Digging For Sofa Change - Album



Randy McAllister is one of the premier singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist to emerge from Texas. Heartbreak, humor, high hair and tall Texas tales all play a part in the song writing of Randy McAllister. His music has been hailed as some of the most original and innovative being made today. While comparison's are not easy, it has been said that his music is a cross between Doug Sahm, John Hiatt and Delbert McClinton, with a blues man's background and sensibilities thrown into the mix.

Raised in the small Texas town of Novice, McAllister is a fifth-generation Texan, whose father was both a fireman and musician. His father was a drummer in a band called "The Flames". At a very young age, Randy followed in his fathers foots steps. He began to take up drumming, but the drums were just the beginning for Randy, as he began to develop as a singer and songwriter.

"If Mark Twain had envisioned a 21st century roots musician, he might have created a character like Randy McAllister, with an easy-going persona and a wry, and an observant wit. McAllister weaves material in the singer/songwriter tradition, with nods to a variety of styles. He is one of those rare artists who is able to meld genres such as gospel, blues, country, Tex-Mex, rock and zydeco together and come away with something that is uniquely him.

**In performance, his songs combine an uncontainable energy and intensity with lyrics that dig into the tough topics. From urban violence, homelessness and other harsh realities to more common concerns like love and dating, McAllister's songwriting approach is particularly skillful, able to be both truthful and funny. McAllister takes universal feelings and translates them into today's reality, with his own pointed style expressed through his distinctive, soulful voice."

McAllister has released 7 critically praised albums beginning with his debut "Diggin' for Sofa Change", followed by "Grease, Grit, Dirt and Spit", the much heralded "Double Rectified Bust Head", 2002 GRAMMY NOMINEE "Givers and Takers", "Temporary Fixes" and A "Little Left of Center" all built on a firm foundation that is his songwriting. His much anticipated Compilation CD, "Flying High While Staying Low Down" was released in late 2006. Most recently Randy released, "Dope Slap Soup" in June of 2007.