Dwight Twilley has been cranking out the tunes for over 35 years. He met future music partner and bandmate Phil Seymour back in 1967 as a teenager. They had both gone to the theater to see a performance of A Hard Days Night. This led to the formation of Oister which would become the Dwight Twilley Band. His long term lead guitarist, Bill Pitcock IV, would also be a founding member.
It would not be until 1975 that they would release their first single. It would become an immediate hit and reach number 16 on the American singles charts. His only other top forty single would be “Girls” issued in 1984. Seymour would leave for a successful solo career during the late 70s but would die of cancer at the age of 41.
Twilley is one of those veteran artists who have made a living from his music without having achieved overwhelming commercial success. The last fact is hard to comprehend as he has produced a large catalogue of catchy and sophisticated pop/rock songs. He has always been able to create memorable melodies for his compositions and his voice remains strong.
He has produced close to thirty albums during his career when you add up his studio, live, and compilation releases. His latest album, The Green Blimp, has just been issued. It is a typical Dwight Twilley project. It may not break any new ground but he continues to cover the old very well as he provides twelve tracks of jangling pop/rock at its best.
He gathers some old friends to assist him. Lead guitarist Bill Pitcock IV returns as a welcome guest plus second generation rockabilly artist Rocky Burnette lends a hand. Susan Cowsill had collaborated on a number of his past projects and she returns as well.
“Get Up” blasts the album off to a good and rousing start. His use of brass fits his style well and I wish he had used it on more of the material. The up-tempo “Doctor” is also a superior tune and has a nice bass/drum foundation. Also of note is the poignant ballad “Let It Rain” and “Me and Melanie” which contains gorgeous harmonies.
Dwight Twilley is one of those artists who are at the heart of rock ‘n’ roll. He continues to produce well crafted albums and take his music out on the road. One can only hope that The Green Blimp will fly high.
Article first published as on Blogcritics.org