Music Reviews

Nelly Wilson

Fly on The Wall


For many bands, the sophomore release is a really tough one. The first release is an outpouring of a whole lifetime of experiences. How would you follow up with anything that would come even close? Of course – for most bands – the first release happens when the principals are in their teens or early twenties. Yeah, they often have all the noise down pat, and they can rock your arse off – but finding a teenager with enough understanding of life to put it down in lyrics that have any real shelf-life is the real trick.

That is not a problem here. These songs are about real stuff – important stuff – things that actually matter and they are rooted in experience. They aren’t just about getting laid or drunk or high. These songs are all about what to hold onto and what to let go of. They reflect someone who has lived and survived, and still understands that it’s an ongoing struggle for us all and that we never really know how it’ll end up but we still gotta keep believing that “It’ll B.O.K.” They know that in the long run all of that other stuff is just the gravy on our plates. The title song says it very well. “If I were a fly on the wall – maybe then I’d know – how to hold on.” This particular song has got it all and it has the potential to be a huge hit song for someone – although I seriously doubt that you’ll ever see Nelly Wilson holdin’ down the top chart spot.

Dale Arwood and Delbert Arwood raised a teenager before undertaking their attempt at putting their words to music. I think that it’s also important to note that the music came first. It was done out of the love of playing and this record probably wouldn’t have even been released had it not been for the prodding of their fans at the casual gatherings they’ve played until now.

When they did decide to finally “burn one,” they surrounded themselves with some real talent. This is a multi-generational group of players with a wide range of influences – all of which come into play here. Like most small groups these folks all have other jobs. Their drummer – Travis Gearheart – is a very in-demand board man in Nashville as well as being the spawn of the Charlie Gearheart of the Legendary Goose Creek Symphony (who adds his Martin 6 String to ‘No Time’). Other Goose Creek members who lend a hand here include Paul ‘The Pearl’ Spradlin and Kevin Arrowsmith. The rest of the band includes James “Wheaty” Wiedemeyer on slide and dobro and Scott Carter on bass.

This release has a bit of a demo feel to it and therein lies part of the charm for me. It’s not a fancy overblown production. It’s real – and it’s music that matters. What more could we ask for?

Nelly Wilson:

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