Consistently an artist with a glowing respect for those that paved the way before him, Rob Alexander returns this month with another story-telling single and tribute to a legendary performer.
Fresh from the newly released album Being Myself, Friend Of Mine (Elton’s Epic) sees a sultry soundscape and vocal lead you through a detailed, scene-setting array of lyrics, walking seductively towards the ultimate drop to the brightness of the hook. And what a hook – brilliantly Elton-inspired in nature, even in vocal tone. Rob Alexander tells this tale superbly well, offering an ode to Elton, a little backstory on a specific event in his life, and a quickly addictive, likable new song to enjoy.
Friend Of Mine (Elton’s Epic) is deeply poetic during the verses, feeling vague yet being defiantly rooted in truth. The song talks of Elton John’s first ever trip to America, when he performed at the Troubadour in LA. Following multiple subsequent appearances there, his life would never be the same again. This song talks you through that in a fascinating and creative way, and celebrates the rise, the worthy introduction, to a musician the entire world would come to know and love.
Complete with an organic, brilliantly immersive instrumental set-up, the song welcomes three of Elton John’s current band members – on bass, keyboards and percussion; Matt Bissonette, Kim Bullard and John Mahon respectively. On guitar is Robbie Angelucci – formerly of Frankie Valli’s band. It’s a mighty fine arrangement of talented players, and the results speak volumes on behalf of that.
In addition, Rob’s own role within the performance, the songwriting and his powerful vocal delivery – the tone, the passion, the switch from a mellow, thoughtful verse to a bold and energizing hook – is more than on par with the skill and precision surrounding it. You’d be forgiven for wondering if this wasn’t a classic yet somewhat slept on Elton hit from yesteryear. Fantastic, a great song and really well captured for the recording.
The entire Being Myself album is an equal joy to experience. From the funk and Bowie-esque bounce of This Hollywood Road, through the seventies brightness of the title-track, onward through the entire playlist to the ultimate finishing swagger of a blues-soaked, rhythmically engaging Loved By You, Alexander showcases unwavering strength of songwriting.
Furthermore, the collection is musically satisfying, loaded with memorable, addictive hooks, and arranged in a decidedly eclectic, ever-interesting manner. A brilliantly nostalgic look through time and the thoughts of the artist, the journey, as well as a welcomed touch of comfort and brightness that seems perfectly well-suited to the Christmas season. A wonderful new playlist of alternative hits.
Gabe Lopez produced the single Friend Of Mine (Elton’s Epic) and also played piano. The track will be officially released in the next month. Download the full album via iTunes. Find & follow Rob Alexander on Facebook.