Local musician Keith Alan Barnett and the Lonesome Polecat Band released Three Days Out of Gerlach on Jan. 27. It’s a well-polished album that takes you back in time with genuine country music.
The album shows Barnett’s great songwriting capabilities as song after song tells a story. They’re all relatable in some way as he sings about love and breakups, small town life, drinking away your worries, traveling and other life experiences.
Barnett’s guitar playing complements his songwriting skills and they come together with the sounds of the Lonesome Polecat Band to create a stellar album. Barnett’s voice fits with his music very well. His vocals fit the rough and tumble nature of the old-school country vibe. The twangy sounds of the pedal steel guitar stand out from the first song to last. The drums and bass hold the rhythm and lead the way on the faster, more up-tempo songs.
The recording quality is very good. All instruments sound very clear. There may be some minor flaws here and there, but they are very unnoticeable.
Barnett gave this info about the album: “The idea for Three Days Out of Gerlach came from finding myself broken down on the on highway 447 about 20 miles south of Gelach in my motorhome. It was very hard trying to find a tow truck to tow it into town and it was three days later that I was able to do so. The line "three days out of Gerlach, and I'm still just down the road" came to me while the tow truck was finally picking up my vehicle from the side of the road. Some five years later the rest of the song came flowing out in about 45 minutes. I like to say it took me five years and 45 minutes to write that song. Lol.”
The first song “I Won’t Be in Jail” gives an outlaw country type of vibe. With Barnett singing that he doesn’t know where he’ll be tomorrow, might be heaven or might be hell, but it sure won’t be in jail.
“Bluest of the Blue” is a twangy, little dance number. It feels like it fits a blues-country vibe in an uplifting song. This one will get your hips and feet swinging side to side. The smooth vocals get the blues out on this one.
“Corpus Christi Bay” comes in very strong. The tempo of the song builds as Barnett’s voice leads in. The other instruments start to chime in to give it an epic build-up. This song is a great example of the stories that Barnett tells in these songs. The lyrics paint a clear picture of what the song is trying to say. It’s another relatable song that feels familiar. The song feels like it brings country to its roots, especially with the message about drinking and living life over again.
“My Heart Has a Mind of Its Own” is an uplifting song that almost feels like classic from a simpler time. It’s different than the other songs on the album and it’s a lot softer and smoother as a love song. The bass line really acts as the backbone. It’s a song about breaking up with someone with simple lyrics and it can be relatable to anyone who has gone through that.
“Waltz Across Texas” is the type of song that will get people out of their seats. With a fast-tempo drum and bass to lead the way, the pedal steel guitar has fun all over this track. There is some electric guitar in this song that gives a different vibe than the rest of the music, and the guitar tone sounds like something out of a decade from eras ago.
Another song that paints a picture and tells a story is “The All Night Café.” It’s a slow tune and you can feel the emotions with it. This one has a very soft sound and lets the pedal steel guitar shine beautifully through its solo.
Barnett sings about the small-town life in “My Hometown” that brings up nostalgia and is relatable to travelers has he mentions many cities across the states.
A different song that songwriters can relate to is “Three Chords and a Steel Guitar.” The song tells the songwriter’s struggle and it’s a simple one about the love for playing music. It’s a pretty song from a perspective that you don’t hear too often.
“Who Let You In?” is about drinking away your worries from a past love. Barnett does a great job walking us through a week in the life of someone who just went through a breakup. It’s an uplifting song with the pedal steel guitar trading spots with the vocals throughout. It’s great songwriting and a fun little story man can relate to and there’s also a lesson in the message.
“Lucky Me, Lovely You” is a track Barnett included that was written by local singer/songwriter Canyon White. It’s a very slow, passionate song that has an epic feeling to it like a ballad almost. The lyrics are very deep, and Barnett’s soul comes through with his passion as he sings. It’s a very soft song and you could imagine couples slow dancing to this one.
The best was saved for last as the title track “Three Days Out of Gerlach” closes the album. The track is a very catchy, upbeat song. The lyrics are the type that get stuck in your head, and surely will be there if you’re traveling toward Nevada’s desert area north of us. This is a cool song about a local town. The band sounds like they had a fun time playing this one and you can tell this is probably a fun song to hear live and it will get everyone out of their seats.
Album credits: Keith Alan Barnett – vocals, acoustic guitar; Ned Chaney – vocals, bass guitar; Michael Holliday – electric guitar, acoustic guitar; Jim Park – pedal steel guitar, keyboards; Lou Werlinger – vocals, drums.
The album was recorded at Tall Oak Studios in Carson City. Listen to “Three Days Out of Gerlach” on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/6lwVqLRNVUmcba6nNXJNMa
Keith Alan Barnett: I Won't be in Jail; Three Days Out of Gerlach.
Ned Chaney: My Heart has a Mind of its Own, Three Chords and a Steel Guitar, The All Night Cafe and Who Let You In
Earl Dutton: Bluest of the Blue
Canyon White: Lucky Me, Lovely You
Robert Earl Keen: Corpus Christi Bay
Charlie Robinson: My Hometown
"Waltz Across Texas" is an old Ernest Tubb song written by his son, Billy Talmadge.
ALBUM RELEASE PARTY
Keith Alan Barnett and the Lonesome Polecat Band are planning an album release party for “Three Days Out of Gerlach” on Saturday, March 4, at A to Zen at 1803 N. Carson St., Carson City.
LISTEN, FOLLOW ONLINE
Find the album on Spotify: spoti.fi/3JSzLcp or iTunes.
Three Days Out of Gerlach Music Video: bit.ly/3lcdv2O
Find him on other social media platforms under Keith Alan Barnett