AJ Fullerton Reviews Cousin Curtiss and Vise Versa
"Cousin Curtiss’ newest release LIVE From The Sherbino Courtyard puts on display a remarkably full sounding acoustic trio. The album lineup is Danny D’Alessandro on banjo, Chris Harden on bass, and Cousin Curtiss on guitar, harmonica & vocals. The album was mixed & mastered by James Mirabal. The recordings are clean & concise like a studio record, but still have the crowd noise & energy of a live show.
The 13 track album is made up of original songs that have an upbeat Americana sound that feels right at home in Western Colorado. Having played the Courtyard this summer, I can attest that there is a special energy in such an intimate performance space. These recordings capture that energy like lightning in a bottle.
When I first met Curtiss he was performing his material as a one man band. Adding bass & banjo to create a “One Man Band Trio” has added a whole new element to his sound. Curtiss’s songwriting is honest, catchy, and easy to grove to. Notable covers on the record would be his take on Tyler Childer’s “Whitehouse Road” & The Grateful Dead’s “Fire on the Mountain.”
These days, Curtiss is based in Montrose, when he is not on the road touring. If you are looking for an album that captures the energy of a bustling live show going into the winter months, this record is a good choice. Better yet, catch him at a live show near you."
– AJ Fullerton
"If music has a family tree, the Blues are at its roots, and AJ Fullerton has carved his name in the bark.
Fullerton’s recent album, “The Forgiver and the Runaway” is an all encompassing odyssey of love, loss, self doubt and pensive pride. At the outset “Remind Me Who I Am Again” ropes the listener in with iconic and tasty Wurlitzer tones. As a musician, the lyrics hit all too close to home. “I’ve been trying for so long...my mind’s been gone. Remind me who I am again.” A perfectly placed call and response, “Healing Takes Time,” hits like an anthem for our generation.
What hits me the most about this album is that while there is a common thread securely woven through it, each song can stand alone as its own pillar of the blues, like a soundtrack for the opening credits of a film that sees a lone ranger drive across the SW Colorado desert in search of themselves. The driving force is undoubtedly AJ Fullerton’s smooth, resonant voice and guitar playing perfection.
You can read this album from start to finish like a book of poetry and it will leave you with a greater understanding of yourself and how to cope with the trials and errors of the world.
Paired with an expertly produced band of elite musicians, including Jake Friel and Paul Reddick, it’s no wonder “Forgiver and the Runaway” has been extremely well received.
With the lyrics “everyone needs a hero, someone to praise” from the title track, AJ is talking about his own heroes, but he is also that person for the next generation of players in Colorado and beyond."
– Cousin Curtiss