'Wasted And Wounded' by Charlie Harrigan - messages that strike home, every time(March 08, 2016)
An absence from making music has done nothing to diminish the lyrical power and gift for narrative possessed by Charlie Harrigan, and should there be any question about the endurance of his talent for acid-sharp, poignant observation then ‘Wasted and Wounded’ will sweep them aside. With a voice that smacks of experience and life lived, he expresses his views on the minutiae of the human condition, taking its vagaries into perspective to build stories that it’s easy to find within your own life. The mundane aspect of existence that many disregard, Harrigan puts into words to craft messages that strike home, every time.
Harrigan takes songs from well-known writers and adds his own idiosyncratic approach – from Tom Waits with the pragmatic humour of ‘I Hope That I Don’t Fall in Love With You’, the heart-rending pain of ‘Glow of the Kerosene Light’ by Wince Coles, Tim Hardin’s ‘The Lady Came from Baltimore’ and Lyle Lovett’s ‘If I Had a Boat’. He’s equally at home putting his own edge on traditional songs like ‘Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye’ and ‘The Poachers’. And to keep his listeners riveted by that delivery he returns to Tom Waits with ‘Shiver me Timbers’ and Don Gibson’s classic ‘Sea of Heartbreak’.
Now some may say Harrigan takes a huge risk interpreting iconic songs from legendary artists. That may be, but when you have his sensitivity, understanding and feel for observation, allied to a characteristic voice you're well equipped to meet that risk, and along the way achieve exactly what you intended. And on ‘Wasted and Wounded’ not a word is wasted.
Find Charlie Harrigan and ‘Wasted and Wounded’ here: www.harrigan.me.uk
Review: Tim Carroll