Songwriter C.R. Ecker came to country music from a news background in New York and L.A. Not a usual musical career route. “I knew to write with clarity and feeling about my own experiences, match melodies that listeners would remember, make every word count and sung as pronounced, and not waste a note –all advice from my songwriting coach Sam Brown, who also mentored a very young Michael Jackson.
You’ll hear of hope, deep love and true heartbreak in The C.R. Ecker Band’s 20 released songs, all on the major digital download services. But the one he hopes will be his legacy is “Bushwacked (Bewildered, Beat-up Bad and Broke) sung by the band’s Buck Young. “In less than six months after its release last summer, it’s been adopted on websites of the two major groups devoted to the long-term unemployed in America – www.99ers.net and ‘Help the 99ers’. I think that says a lot about the media comparisons being drawn to “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime.” Now, my song, originally written and recorded in 1991, is becoming timelier each day as a true ‘Anthem of American Angst.’”
Another ‘message’ song relates to infidelity, and ‘Dixie Lee’ is a sobering account of a tragic love triangle in Texas in the early 1950s. “It is not an easy song to listen to, quite graphic in places, but I consider it the country song equivalent of the movie ‘Fatal Attraction.’ It’s an important song, with a PA label, for our ‘anything goes’ times.”
Then there is “I’m Thinkin’ of an Old Friend Today,” an emotional tribute based on the loss of Ecker’s dog, his long-time best buddy. “It reflects the deep sorrow of loss and the happiness of sharing a loving connection between a human and an animal.”
You’ll find entertainment aplenty too as the band fronts outstanding lead vocalists such as Hollywood’s Susie Stevens in “I Believe in You,” “Heartless” (co-written) and “A Bright Tomorrow” (Christian) as well as L.A. powerhouse performer Michael Stanton, with “California Cowboy” and “When God Created You.”
Ecker has moved production from L.A. to Nashville. The first song off the new front porch is a country re-cast of a Pop ballad he wrote for his new bride in 1987 as a wedding present, “Your Smile Says it All.” It’s sung, majestically, by one of the most promising young vocalists coming out of Music City, Amber Rose.
The C.R. Ecker Band website http://thecreckerband.com