Search - Robert Earl Keen :: Walking Distance

Walking Distance
Robert Earl Keen
Walking Distance
Genres: Country, Folk, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (11) - Disc #1

After 1997's Picnic, an uneven attempt to cross over to the rock side of the alternative-country divide, this Bandera, Texas, singer-songwriter returns to sounds and themes closer to home. Brimming with fiddle, mandolin, a...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Robert Earl Keen
Title: Walking Distance
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: RCA
Original Release Date: 10/27/1998
Release Date: 10/27/1998
Genres: Country, Folk, Pop, Rock
Styles: Americana, Outlaw Country, Contemporary Folk, Singer-Songwriters, Folk Rock, Singer-Songwriters
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Other Editions: Walking Distance
UPCs: 078221887625, 0078221887625

After 1997's Picnic, an uneven attempt to cross over to the rock side of the alternative-country divide, this Bandera, Texas, singer-songwriter returns to sounds and themes closer to home. Brimming with fiddle, mandolin, and slinky honky-tonk guitars, Keen's eighth album has the lyrical depth and humor of his best work. At the center is a four-song outlaw suite, beginning with Norman Blake's little-known gem "Billy Gray" and ending with the drifter's lament "Still Without You," in which Keen sings, "I climbed the mountains and I swept the plains / I crossed the border and I broke my chains / I walked the back roads till my shoes wore through / I'm still without you." And while the album closes with the bonus coda "Happy Holidays Y'All" (a hysterical sequel to his classic "Merry Christmas from the Family," presented in two giddy takes), Walking Distance finds Keen rediscovering the intense poetry of his Texas muse. --Roy Kasten

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CD Reviews

The tightest and most introspective REK to date.
Wayne Cavanaugh ( | Monmouth County, New Jersey | 12/21/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Robert Earl Keen's songs have often been about going places. From his classic The Road Goes On Forever to Gringo Honeymoon, his stories celebrate the journey. In Walking Distance, the journeys come from a soul who has picked up just a little more wisdom along the trail. Down the Dusty Trail sets it up beautifully with three little rite-of- passage vignettes. Feeling Good Again then describes a time when all those journeys crystalize and the world seems to make sense for just a moment. Of course, there's fun stuff too: The infectious That Bucking Song won't leave your head for a long time. Most ambitious, of course, is the three song theme that becomes the ultimate REK journey to date. It might take a listen or two, but the lyric is clearly worth the time. This entire collection is rich with a mature and unique voice that defines Robert Earl Keen's music. Backed by Rich Brotherton's amazingly right guitar playing, it is a collection full of all the things that make you want to remember every single word. A tremendous acheivement that reminds us that all the journeys worth taking are within Walking Distance."
"Walking distance" would be a bargin at twice the price.
Wayne Cavanaugh ( | 11/04/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I'm a 47 year old son of the late sixties, raised on the icons of that rock and roll era. Being fortunate enough to see many of the groups from that musical period, I developed a taste for the unusual. The music from my youth was dynamic and ever changing evoking all ranges of emotion. I first saw, and heard, Robert Earl Keen and the Robert Earl Keen Band on Austin City Nights back in 94' after returning from 36 straight hours of work. As I was falling asleep I heard "Merry Christmas from the Family" for the first time. The REK band woke me straight away and held me spell bound with their delightful music and remarkably irreverant lyrics. From that point on I was marked as a fan. I've had a bit of a hard time finding REK cd's until I discovered Amazon "music", and stumbled onto the REK treasure trove that is at Amazon. "Walking Distance" was bought sight unseen and unheard on the come that it would be typical REK fare, and disappointed I was not. From the first cut to the last this cd is nothing short of great. No two songs are alike. "Walking Distance" runs the gamut of whimsical Texas swing to the sound of zydeco from the cajun areas of Louisiana. The ballads allow one to wipe a tear while sipping a beer, or to glow with the warmth of friendship from those we value most. These guys write a wide range of the eclectic and spin a magical spell with their musical talents. I was going to compare REK and the REK band to other musical greats, but decided that would not be fair to REK et al. These guys can stand alone. "Walking Distance" is well worth the price of admission, in fact it would be a bargin at twice the price.tb"
Music for the soul
Bt | Parts unknown | 09/07/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I dont get people who trash this guy. They obviously don't understand what he's all about. Robert Keen is a Texas treasure! His songwriting is absolutely heartbreaking, hilarious and honest. He writes about real people, places and things. His music is equal to his songwriting. His voice has that lonesome twang that only real lovers of Texas roots music would appreciate. Here he returns to a rootsier feel than his "Picnic' disc,(which was also great) and it's magic. A gem!"