William Clark Green “Baker Hotel”

Bill Grease Records, 2022

Sixth studio album from native Texan singer songwriter firmly anchored in his home state.

Artwork for William Clark Green album "Baker Hotel"Similar to his previous records, Texan singer songwriter, William Clark Green’s new album, ‘Baker Hotel’, is rooted firmly in the Lone Star State. However, unlike his other albums, Green wrote most of the songs with writers who are also solo artists in their own right. In the past, Green had only approached other songwriters to collaborate with him after writing the majority of the material on his own.

The title track refers to the monolithic hotel which was built in Mineral Wells to take advantage of the town’s famed mineral water. At its peak, the 450 room building, which included an Olympic-size swimming pool filled with the restorative water, was frequented by the likes of Clark Gable, Judy Garland, Roy Rogers and the Three Stooges. The abandoned hotel, which closed in 1972, is now said to be the most haunted place in Texas. In ‘Baker Hotel’ Green playfully sings about people daring to explore its ‘fourteen stories of hell’, exclaiming ‘You ain’t nothin but a chicken til you make it to the top’. It’s got the slight feel of an episode of Scooby-Doo.

There are a number of songs about relationship struggles on this record including ‘Give A Damn’, ‘All You Got’, which is a tad bombastic, and ‘Gun To Your Head’ which features some sparkling guitar work on its introduction. The minimalist arrangement of ‘Getting Drunk’ stands out from the pack. It’s an admission to relying on alcohol to get through the bad times: ‘I try to find any way to feel alive, And I try to hide all the bad times with the good times’. The album ends with ‘Me, Her And You’. It’s another of the more acoustic tracks on the album with some standout pedal steel guitar and fiddle playing. It also addresses some of the pain of romance and relationships.

Many of the songs on ‘Baker Hotel’ could be considered to be mainstream country, and although they’re enjoyable in themselves, it’s the acoustic based ones which have more edge and weight. It would be interesting to hear stripped down versions of many of the songs on this record. Sometimes less really is more.



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