About 18 months ago we came across a new song by Chuck Wicks. It was ‘Us Again’. A very engaging power ballad that we played often and monitored its progress on the US Country charts.
It stalled just outside the top 30 which was a poor return for a quality track but it marked the return of an artist that had seemed to disappear off the radar since his impressive career launch in 2007.
He burst on the scene with ‘Stealing Cinderella’ which hit the top 5, was the fastest climbing debut country selling single in 2007 and led to a top 10 debut album ‘Starting Now’. The single releases from the album continued until 2009 but after that Wicks’ career seemed to be stalling.
He announced that he was working on his second album back in 2009. It has taken just over six years before release date.
He has not been away from the industry however. 4 of the tracks on the new album have been previously released as singles. Only ‘Us Again’ finding national recognition.
His prowess as songwriter predated his recording career. Jason Aldean fans will recognise ‘I Don’t Do Lonely Well’ which appears on Aldean’s ‘Night Train’ album. Wicks’ version is on the new album. He states that his version is a lot different – “same lyrics, same melodies in the chorus but the verses are a little different, a little sparse. It’s a little organic, more vibey”.
He is as close as you could be to US Country media. He is the co-host of Nash FM’s America’s Morning Show. A syndicated country music show. Probably what’s known as living the dream apart from the fact that he gets up at 4am every morning!
He wrote or co-wrote all 11 songs on the album. The opener and new single ‘She’s Gone’, a mid-tempo pounder telling the story of a recently departed maverick girl. Strong melodies and radio appeal may repeat his recent chart success.
Wicks is a fine singer. Check out the power ballads ‘Fix Me’ and ‘Whole Damn Thing’. Both songs capturing the raw emotions that he puts into his songs.
‘Salt Life’ saw the light of day originally in 2013 and led to his popular Salt Life lifestyle brand collaboration.
He has penned songs for Frankie Ballard, The Swon Brothers as well as Jason Aldean.
His daily connection with the current music scene clearly helps with the song writing. ‘Watcha Got Girl’ is as radio friendly as they come and acts as a contrast to the gentle ballad that ends that album ‘Over You Getting Over Me’. Talk about leaving the best till last!
Wicks describes ‘Always’ as his wedding song of 2016. ‘Over You Getting Over Me’ won’t be played at any weddings but it is the song that demonstrates the qualities of Wick’s song writing abilities. It’s a breakup song from the top drawer sung with raw feeing and emotion. Quality.
It’s been a long wait. It’s good to have him back although he would say that he never went away.
His website bio describes him as a “gifted song writer, devoted conservationist, triathlon competitor and acclaimed broadcast personality”. From our perspective in the UK we can only vouch for the former.
A welcome addition to the quality list of 2016 album releases.