Come Hell or High Water
PJ Brunson is a talented singer/songwriter from Charlotte, North Carolina. Her new CD, 'Come Hell or High Water' is an impressive mixture of songs, made rich by some of the Charlotte area's best musicians. She lends the melodies to the poetry of her songwriting partner, Cotton Brindle. PJ has set her high water mark with this collection of music, the confluence of folk and Americana. Her crystal cool voice converges with the roiling hot musicianship of her friends, notably guitarist, Jack Lawrence who regularly accompanies Doc Watson; Tom Kuhn, of Rank Outsiders fame; and David Childers, well known Charlotte performer and songwriter. Glen Alexander's award-winning fiddle and Robert McClure's stunning guitar work shine on this CD. Danny Guyton on mandolin and banjo lend just the right accent along with Donnie Fletcher's percussion embellishments, Hunter Kome's cello, and Pamela Dale's backup harmonies. Many of these compositions observe world issues, such as nuclear weapons in 'Trinity' and the demise of the family farm on 'Empty Fields'. 'Free to Choose' is personalized by each one who has a difficult decision to make. 'San Pedro Moon', although amusing, comments on rampant over-development. These songs are anchored in the southern culture of the Carolinas, reflected in 'Take me Home', 'Congaree' and 'Night Train'. Celtic flavored 'Maggie's Eyes' took it's inspiration from the waters of a certain tributary of the Catawba River. The light-hearted 'Marvel Mystery Oil' is reminiscent of life as it once was. When you listen, you will first hear the sound, the tune, the rhythm, the instruments, and the voice; then listen to the words. This collection of music has the best of those things and more. REVIEW BY Carole Shelton, Tampa Florida -- PJ Brunson was born in El Paso, Texas, the daughter of a gentle artist mother and a musician cowboy father with good looks and a wandering eye. She grew up in little Lugoff, South Carolina, learning discipline and perseverance from her loving adoptive father. These skills she adeptly applied to her musical studies and started performing as soon as she could drive. When she left Lugoff for college on a music scholarship, the town's denizens changed the population count on the Welcome sign from 2078 to 2077. She was influenced from a very early age by her guitar picking grandfather who would nightly croon love songs from the living room while PJ sat at his knee. Since then she has been constantly growing as a musician soaking up influences from every genre of music, some of them long lasting, others mere flashes that faded away. They all molded PJ in some way, making her today a seasoned performer comfortable in many acoustic genres. Her performances of witty, heart-felt original music are influence by artists she respects like Joan Baez, Simon and Garfunkel, Indigo Girls, James Taylor, Alison Krauss, and Mary Chapin Carpenter. PJ isn't just a mellow alto singer with a unique deep timber to her voice but an accomplished guitarist with her own finger-picking style.