“Here is a CD for the thoughtful listener who likes his or her contemporary tunes well-seasoned with a touch of blues and a hint of rockabilly. It’s honest, unpretentious and totally impressive. Both the music and the vocals reveal a combination of insight and gutsy delivery. Dusty’s smoking-hot alto voice is resonant and flexible, with the added bonus of such clear diction that every word is understandable (after all, anything worth hearing is worth hearing accurately). She can shift from sultry to sublime, sarcastic to sweet – and it sounds natural. It would be easy to think of her with Joe at a kitchen party, shaking the ceiling. Their songs have an unstudied quality, as if they’re fresh from the heart every single time.”
-Brenda J. Tate, winner of the Smithbooks/Coles Review Award , Canada.
Two Ramona musicians with very different, but equally interesting life stories, are starting to make a splash on the music scene with their band called Dusty and The LoveNotes. And residents will get to see for themselves when the band appears at the Ramona Mainstage theater on Oct. 22 as an opening act for Cajun blues singer Tab Benoit, who is nationally known both for his music and his work as a wetlands activist.
Dusty is Dusty Recor, who only began singing in public five years ago at the age of 53, but said she is now “having more fun than I’ve ever had in my life.” Read More…
On the debut CD, What Did You Expect?, Dusty and the LoveNotes take us on a trail ride full of heart-felt stories about love, longing, being true to our beliefs and finally, finding ourselves. In the tradition of folk and country music, Dusty reaches out with her voice and lyrics telling compelling stories and singing them with a raw sincerity. The new release delivers a blend of original and retro folk rock and country-inflected songs with a combination of acoustic and electric instruments tastefully played by Indian Joe (lead guitar and bass), Dusty (rhythm guitar and flute) and Sam Sailors (drums). Their concept is fresh and simple and showcases the clever lyrics and melodies of each tune. From the first track, “Antigua,” written in the cockpit of a friend’s sailboat, to the humorous yet poignant “Blue Satin Thong,” a song about leaving your lover and knowing they will miss you, Dusty paints sonic pictures of real life experiences. “I want to be a positive example for my “sisters” to show they can do anything they want to do at any moment in their life, just like I am.” An honest statement from this modern day minstrel. After all, what did you expect?
Musical Descriptive Statement: A blend of folk rock and country inflected original songs prepared with a combination of acoustic and electric instruments.
“Everyone who has read my blogs know that I’m not a big fan of country music, however, Dusty’s CD adds enough rock n roll, humor and life experience to even her country tracks that makes them enjoyable to all! “What Did You Expect” offers a unique blend of retro-rock, country and a touch of the Caribbean that makes every track different, in its own way, in other words, it holds the listeners interest, which a good CD should!
More than that it is a glimpse, a snapshot of Dusty’s life and it offers some valuable “lessons of life” along the way! We learn that are lives are a series of choices. If we make bad choices, we have a bad or hard life, if we make good choices we have a good or at least, better life. We learn of Dusty’s love of sailing and the simpler life of the Caribbean Islands and that it is O.K. To drop out of the “rat race” and “hustle and bustle” of the modern day world and retreat to the simpler life. We learn how she handled the loss of her brother, Geordie and how she handled breaking up with someone she cared about. We also learn how she handled changing careers from dressage rider to singer and song writer. Dusty and the LoveNote’s “What Did You Expect” is a “Treasure Trove” of knowledge, wisdom and experience. I can’t begin to list everything I found in the lyrics of Dusty’s songs!” ~Bill,Gulf Coast Music – Read full Review here
“Dusty’s lyrics fill this promising CD with questions, pathos, and humor. The central themes of life’s ever-changing directions and expectations are reflected in her heartfelt songwriting. Dusty’s “could have/might have been” moments are semi-country tunes fried with rock-Caribbean rhythms. The music is built on arrangements and guitar riffs that fill this CD with almost more than can be delivered. There’s a country singer waiting in the wings, trying to get out, and lurking in the compressed tracks of this disk. Dusty’s voice invites you in and tries to bust out but seems hesitant and restrained by the arrangements and modern technology of contemporary CD recording. She takes us around the proverbial musical block with songs about relationships, travel, and her love ’em and leave ’em tales. Her song-sung tales are real and the themes are universal – definitely a good thing for a performer-songwriter these days. Dusty’s musical persona and expressiveness were shaped by her guitar lessons with Indian Joe, a local musician who knows his way around the guitar and America’s musical songbook. Indian Joe provides most of the musical fills, rhythm, and soulful sounds for this disk. He was the catalyst for Dusty’s recording and provided the impetus for getting herself out there musically. Dusty is clearly singing from where she’s been in life and letting others know that the road isn’t always straight and clear. She’s a grown up with a heart full of experiences built on the usual rocky roads we travel and the bumps we experience the longer the journey lasts. Writing personal songs is like being a tight rope walker performing without a safety net and Dusty isn’t shy about taking this risk. She writes songs with classic hooks, twists and turns, and isn’t afraid to let her guard down. Her song “Recipe” lays it out, right or wrong, as she expresses all her emotions vocally. “S.P.C.A.” sounds like a take on an old country number, with hints of Wanda Jackson, Brenda Lee, and 1950’s rock ‘n’ roll. “It’s Over” has a minor-key feeling with echoes of a European chanteuse, a torch singer giving someone a reality check. “Blue Satin Thong” is a parting song with sighs of what you’ll be missing – the lyrics describe what men sometimes reduce relationships to after they’re over. Dusty writes simply here, but she is clearly showing that life and love relationships are more than just a thong left in some former lover’s drawer. Her writing is life-driven and her words and heartfelt voice tell of a journey that touches everyone.
This CD yearns to break out and get beyond the confines of the recording studio version that suppresses Dusty’s natural warmth and the quality of the material. She sometimes sounds tentative, which may be because this is her first time in the recording studio, but it might also be due to modern recording techniques. This CD is a fine start and leaves us wanting more. It’s filled with promise and is clearly only a beginning in her musical travels.”
~ Allen Singer, The San Diego Troubadour, October 2010
Listen to music by Dusty and The LoveNotes, which Dusty Recor describes as “bluesy country-rock,” and one immediately realizes that these are not the songs and lyrics commonly heard in today’s music.
Or as one young man said to Recor when the band played recently at Rebecca’s Coffee House in San Diego: “This isn’t the same boring stuff I’m used to hearing on the radio!”
“I love the character in her voice,” said her partner, Indian Joe. “It’s distinctive, and I love her clarity—the way she can bring out the meaning of the words in her lyrics.”
Most of Recor’s lyrics have been inspired by her life experiences. For example, she wrote the song “Antigua,” referring to the island in the West Indies, in the cockpit of a friend’s sailboat the evening before a return flight to California. Here’s part of what she had to say:
“Back in California, my life’s a constant rush
Faster is better and nothing’s good enough
Upgrade this, multi-function that
Nothing new is ever built to last
Find true love on line
Why talk when you can text
Exercise with your big screen
No one to see you sweat.”
Recor, 58, has also written a song called “Recipe,” which she describes as “a theme for many women of my age:”
“Early in our lives we’re dished up and served a plate.
It’s full of foods we didn’t choose, foods we love or hate.
Either way we’re told we’ve got to eat it ‘till it’s gone
And we’re too young to know whether that is right or wrong.
Now that I am older and I’ve finally cleaned my plate.
I’ve done what was expected by my family, church and state.
I ate what I was dished. I did my best to please,
But I’m not satisfied so it’s time to cook for me.
I’m dreaming up a menu, just to suit my taste.
It’s going to be exciting, filled with proteins, greens and cake.
I’m mixing up a recipe I’ve never used before,
And finding out a little less is worth a whole lot more.
I’m designing and defining a brand new recipe.
I’m changing, rearranging the instructions just for me.
They may seem strange, a bit unorthodox.
You won’t find them on the back of a Betty Crocker box.”
Recor can also display quite a sense of humor, as demonstrated by her “official leaving song” called “Blue Satin Thong,” which says, in part:
“I’m leaving today, you know I can’t stay
Cause you don’t love me anymore
I gave you back your key. I left nothing else of me,
‘cept my blue satin thong in your drawer.
You know I really can’t cook and I really can’t sew
Burned up your cash, wrecked your old convertible
But I did something right each and every night
And I left a little something in your drawer
Blue satin thong in your drawer
You say you don’t love me anymore
You might be sad, but me I’m just glad and
I won’t be coming back and that’s for sure!”
How to describe Dusty and the LoveNotes? “The lovechild of Sheryl Crow and Mick Jagger”
On the debut CD, What Did You Expect?, Dusty and the LoveNotes take us on a trail ride full of heart-felt stories about love, longing, being true to our beliefs and finally, finding ourselves. In the tradition of folk and country music, Dusty reaches out with her voice and lyrics telling compelling stories and singing them with a raw sincerity. Her guitar teacher and lead guitar player, Indian Joe, inspired Dusty’s recent journey into songwriting and recording. “Indian Joe got me out singing,” said Dusty, “we did duo gigs and he even put me in his classic rock and roll band for a little while. He has the incredible ability to take my melodies and lyrics and create the most perfect guitar parts.” A newcomer to the music scene late in her life, Dusty embraced singing, playing guitar and songwriting with the passion of a seasoned artist. The songs on this CD are a collection of original music written over the past four years. According to Dusty the title, “What Did You Expect?,” came from a reaction from one of her friends when she heard Dusty’s songs for the first time. She told Dusty, “It’s not what I expected!”
The new release, on That Other Label (TOL), delivers a blend of original and retro folk rock and country-inflected songs prepared with a combination of acoustic and electric instruments tastefully played by Indian Joe (lead guitar and bass), Dusty (rhythm guitar and flute) and Sam Sailors (drums). Their concept is fresh and simple providing a basic musical foundation that showcases the lyrics and melodies of each tune. From the first track, “Antigua,” written in the cockpit of a friend’s sailboat, to the humorous yet poignant “Blue Satin Thong,” a song about leaving your lover and knowing they will miss you, Dusty paints sonic pictures of real life experiences. Living in the rural areas of southern California where she is surrounded by the voices of nature, Dusty has learned to listen to the poetry in her soul instead of relying on the status quo. “Starting a music career and learning to play guitar, sing and perform in the second half of my life isn’t the normal thing most women do,” commented Dusty. “I want to be a positive example for my “sisters” to show that a person can do anything they want to do at any moment in their life. We truly create our own reality every day with every breath we take.” An honest statement from this modern day minstrel. After all, what did you expect?
TRACK INFORMATION FOR What Did You Expect from Dusty & the LoveNotes:
1) Antigua – This first track was written in the cockpit of a friend’s sailboat the evening before I was to take a flight back to California. Antigua is a gorgeous island way down in the West Indies. I spend as much time as I can in the Caribbean and I am particularly fond of that island. The song reflects the huge delta between the two existences.
2) Heart – Everyone gets a broken heart at least once in this life. You either let the experience cripple you or you learn from it. Some use it as an excuse not to continue to grow. I think that’s a cop-out.
3) Not Necessarily –I wrote this one morning because Joe wanted me to write something with a more conventional rhythm. It’s simple, but it’s true that love is often better expressed in actions than words.
4) Serendipity – I wrote this while renting a house on the water in Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands. I lived for years on a boat in a harbor of St. Croix. I sailed everywhere and truly loved it and never thought I would leave. But I did and I have missed it ever since.
5) Tell Me – I have done more than my fair share of partying and though these days I am more sedate it sure wouldn’t take much to get me out there again.
6) Recipe – This is a song that is a theme for many women of my age. Our culture ingrains us to behave a certain way and men too. Most of us eventually decide we deserve to concentrate on our own selves and it would be a dishonor to ourselves if we didn’t.
7) Geordie’s Song – My brother was an incredible human being devoured by alcoholism. It is horrible for the person who has the disease and equally horrible for the people who love them.
8) S.P.C.A. – I wrote this fictional song in bed one morning after a gig. I love the chorus.
9) It’s Over – This song was written after the demise of my marriage. He is a wonderful person but we grew apart and I couldn’t stay. This one is truly heartfelt.
10) Gravity – Some people think chemistry is what attracts one individual to another. My theory is that it’s gravity.
11) Blue Satin Thong – This is my official “leaving” song. You may say you don’t love me or want me anymore but you are going to miss me!
Label: That Other Label
Street Date: August 10, 2010
Dusty: rhythm guitar, flute & lead vocal
Indian Joe: lead guitar, bass & back up vocals
Sam Sailors: drums