Equipped with his guitar, a pile of songs, a voice that’s a hybrid of Tom Petty and Gram Parsons, and experience from leading The Seed Band while at Illinois State, Ernie Hendrickson started his solo career on the right foot.
His second record, Walking With Angels, has twelve songs of pure and unadulterated Americana pop. And we mean that in the absolute best way possible – it’s bright in spite of the sometimes depressing lyrics and has the perfect twang:classically-styled rock ratio.
With producer and guitarist Bo Ramsey (Lucinda Williams), Jon Penner (bass) and Steve Hayes (drums) Ernie laid down the basic tracks in January, eventually fleshing them out with Brian Wilkie (pedal steel, guitar), Kevin McKendree (piano, B3, Wurlitzer) and Bob Black (banjo).
The optimistic songs like Let Me See You Smile and Hold On To Hope offset the stories of a forlorn woman (Candy’s Song) and untimely death (Only The Good Die Young). Two other standouts are the hand clapping, barn dance-inspired Country Fall and the early Eagles-esque Easy Lovin’.