Jonny Corndawg : Down on the Bikini Line

Jonny Corndawg, a self-proclaimed “country singer, not a singer-songwriter,” approaches the country genre with an interesting song catalog that strikes a satirical, but reverent, note with audiences.  He has been referred to as the Andy Kaufman of honky tonk, but his attention to detail and focus on traditional melodies and timing is integral to his craft.  A nondescript, strong voice, and an average band put forth a compelling story through interesting, and in some cases provocative, lyrics that are well-supported by nostalgic melodies. The lyrics are fresh for the current generation of listeners, but will likely draw considerable support from a more seasoned audience.

Despite having toured on his motorcycle for almost 10 years, I will be honest to say that I’d never heard of Jonny Corndawg prior to receiving Down the on Bikini Line to review. I enjoy a wide range of music and always like to spin something new, but this was definitely something different. This album exudes a Nashville vibe with the strong production and music that would give any listener the feel of being in a downtown honky-tonk. The lyrics, however, are something that might not reminiscent of anything familiar, in a good way. Song placement is strong, giving a nice flow to an album that has a tendency to grow on you with repeated listens.

The album opens up with “Shaved (Like a Razor)” and a sound reminiscent of Alan Jackson a la “Chattahoochee.” Things slow down with “Dog on a Chain,” which depicts the inhumane treatment of a backyard dog, the lyrics, sounds and harmonies of breeding despair. The album cues up the lighthearted and humorous “Life of a Bear”, which describes the misadventures of an average bear in the vein of Keller Williams, and Corndog nods to his truck-driving past on “Night Rider,” a song about life on the road. With phrases like, “…let the rumble strips be your guide to carry you safely down the line…,” it is evident many long nights were spent crisscrossing the country. “When a Ford Man Turns to Chevy” is catchy, and the album winds down with a traditional harmony entitled “Silver Pantie Liners,” with expectedly un-traditional lyrics.

Down on the Bikini Line is an enjoyable experience, and although a single run-through may not do this album justice, this “country singer, not a singer-songwriter” might just be your thing.

Down on the Bikini Line is now out on Nasty Memories Records.