In a musical climate that offers more production and editing capabilities than ever before, it’s easy to forget the beauty of a simple recording that showcases true talent and raw character. Ward Davis doesn’t need any major production—his message comes through loud and clear in good old-fashioned acoustic country music.
An Arkansas native, Davis has written songs for modern country superstars including Trace Adkins, Willie Nelson, and Merle Haggard. In 2015 he released a project all his own, “15 Years in a 10 Year Town.”
From the first note you hear of this album, it captures your attention in the best way possible. Davis’ earnest voice is backed with perfectly understated acoustic parts that let his voice and songwriting talent shine. As you listen, his straightforward recordings make it easy to imagine that Davis is no further away than the rocking chair beside yours on a front-porch-pickin’ Saturday night.
Davis doesn’t shy away from typical country music content, including a cheating song with “Nobody’s Looking,” an honest religious doubter’s anthem on “Skeptic’s Prayer,” and the rush of love with “I Got You.” Between the outlaw feel of his collaboration with Willie Nelson and Jamey Johnson to cover the 1978 Ed Bruce tune “Old Wore Out Cowboys,” and the upbeat drive of “More Goodbye,” this album has a little of everything.
Ward Davis doesn’t sugarcoat his music, and his straightforward writing style is a refreshing reminder of days gone by. As a modern musician with the influence of time-tested traditional sound and honesty, Ward Davis’ album “15 Years in a 10 Year Town” is a real gem of a listening experience.
- Allie Windom