Jim Lauderdale & the Dream Players : Honey Songs

jim_lauderdale_honey_songs.jpgIt’s getting closer to summertime, and nothing states that fact more equivocally than the beaming set of songs that incorporates Jim Lauderdale & the Dream Players disc, Honey Songs.

Lauderdale has brought together his Dream Players in the form of James Burton on electric guitar, Al Perkins on pedal steel guitar, Garry Tallent on bass, Glen D. Hardin on piano, Steve Sheehan on acoustic guitar and studio master Ron Tutt on drums. They add the necessary embellishments, along with keyboardist Eric Holt, to the mournful and bluesy "It’s Finally Sinking In." With cover artwork that includes everything bee and honey-like, Honey Songs’ "Borrow Some Summertime" with its lightly-stepping country flavor seems to fit right into place.

Produced by Lauderdale, Perkins, and Tim Coats, and recorded in Nashville, Tennessee, Honey Songs’ even balance is achieved through Lauderdale’s strong compositional framework on songs like "The Daughter of Majestic Sage" and the percolating opener, "Honeysuckle Honeypie." With added help from guest vocalists Patty Loveless and Buddy Miller, Lauderdale’s vision becomes realized on "Hittin’ it Hard" and "I Hope You’re Happy." Emmylou Harris helps to bring the recording to a close on "I’m Almost Back."

The warmth of the sun, coconut oil and Jim Lauderdale & the Dream Players’ Honey Songs … what a nice combination for the summer.

Honey Songs is out now on Yep Roc.