Ray Wylie Hubbard
The Ruffian’s Misfortune
Ray Wylie Hubbard has been a genuine Texas songwriting legend since his rowdy ditty “Up Against The Wall, Redneck Mother” became a hit for Jerry Jeff Walker in 1973, and since then he’s put out record after record of stellar tune craft, and has become one of the most distinctive and irrepressible artists around. From “Redneck Mother” to his classic “Snake Farm” to the The Grifter’s Hymnal from 2012, Hubbard’s songs- with his world-weary vocal style and snaky guitar parts have a way of embedding themselves in a listeners head, and his newest, The Ruffian’s Misfortune is more of the same.
Starting off with the apocalyptic “All Loose Things” – A songbird is singin’/A song by Kevin Welch/Thunder is rumblin’/like the Devil himself did belch – Hubbard sounds like a revival preacher testifying to a tent full of true believers. Next up is the bluesy “Hey Mama My Time Ain’t Long” sounding a bit like Tony Joe White, and Hubbard fingerpicks his Southern Jumbo next on “Too Young Ripe, Too Young Rotten” which is highlighted by the fiddle of Eleanor Whitmore.
Hubbard’s gear fetish is given full display on “Chick Singer Badass Rockin’”, a garage rock look at the femme fatales- rock and roll is flat-out lawless/And Joan Jett is a goddess – can’t dispute that, right? The album’s ten cuts give a prime example of Hubbard’s twisted talents as a songwriter, singer and with a stellar band, including his son Lucas on guitar, some badass rockin’ himself. Ray Wylie Hubbard has got some serious mojo. I mean serious.