An album of hard core country moans and blues riffs – an album called Heart of Dixie, mind you – rooted in France? Oh, yes indeed. By some twist of fate, the Bootlegger’s frontman, Didier Céré, was born in a faraway land that conjures images of vineyards and fine art galleries with Honky Tonkin’ in his blood and Texas Music in his soul. Along with his bandmates, Fred Bordeneuve, Polo Lugan and Nicolas Lacaze, Céré has created a truly great album in Heart of Dixie, with each song delivering a surprise of it’s own in direction and influence.
Céré’s strong vocal presence and the band’s kickass pickin’ make this an album every true Roots Country or Roots Rock lover will enjoy. “Red Nekkid” kicks it all off in a rebel rousin’ Country firestarter. Céré growls with the fever of a heavy metal singer and swaggers his lines off in a delivery that would make Elvis proud. Every track delivers a different flavor of genre-blending, culture-bending music. The Bootleggers are great musicians – and they’re INTERESTING. I like that. A lot. I also like the company they keep. Bringing in Dale Watson and covering his song “Exit 109”? Oh, yeah. Add in the great Texas fiddler Don Raby and the ball keeps rolling. And song selections – How about a Hank Williams “Move It On Over” and Texas faves Cody Canada & Micky Braun original tune “51 Pieces?” Good stuff. And hey, let’s throw in an excellent version of (BR-549) Chuck Mead’s “Out of Habit” for good measure. This band has ENERGY. They obviously had a ball recording this album because you can feel it in every track. Like the jammn’ instrumental (Lee Roy Parnell) “Mama Screw Your Wig On Tight” featuring guest pianist Eric Suzi Allibe – it smokes. This album will have you movin’ and groovin’ your boots off in record time.
As if they hadn’t impressed with song choices enough, they turn around and deliver an intense 7 minute 22 second version of Steve Young’s “Alabama Highway.” Céré’s passionate delivery on this song is truly beautiful. Heart of Dixie is an excellent album. Get ya some French Honkytonk. Seriously. Right HERE.
Heart of Dixie Track List
1. Red Nekkid
2. I’m Afraid
3. Out of Habit
4. Mama Screw Your Wig On Tight
5. Alabama Highway
6. Exit 109
7. High On The Mountain
8. Move It On Over
9. 51 Pieces
“51 Pieces” Live:
More on The Bootleggers:
~ Richard Diehn
Richard Diehn hails from the hills of Northern West Virginia where he grew up as a member of his family’s traveling band. He’s a writer, storyteller, and certified Rockhound. He enjoys fishing, Gentleman Jack, and stalking his favorite country singer George Jones.
Outlaw Magazine. Country, Rock and Roll, Blues, Folk, Americana, Punk. As long as it is real, it is OUTLAW. Overproduced mediocrity need not apply.