myself to get lost in it. It was
sweet, intriguing and confusing
only b/c I wasn’t sure if there
was a way I was supposed to
react. But there is no wrong or
right way, I just let it go.
Though razor blades and skin
carvings aren’t everyone’s
idea of romance, it’s just as
erotic in minds of a select few and
simply opening your mind to that understanding is the epitome of acceptance.
By far my favorite track on this album is ‘Bad Driver’, the acoustic surfer beat
entrance wrapped up in lyrics like “cause that hole will say no to a "butt-
fucking-fairy" and an open ended and abrupt finale. ‘Take Me Back Home
Again’, more of those masculine electric strums. Intense lyrics of the passion
behind lust at first sight and the longing that ensues keeps it burning, I find
this fresh, overt and fun!, “you’re the only rider on the highway of my bones”,
Great to dance to, very sexy. The awkwardness and extremity of adolescence
is revisited, after listening to the track “Seventeen”. I especially connected with
the distance that had come to fruition with my father during those years. Other
somewhat moody tracks include “Bina’s Radio” and “The Wild Men”, equally
powerful however didn’t speak to me nearly as personally as the others. The
incredible thing about musical expression is that it speaks to us all on many
levels so take a listen. Number nine on the album is “The Winding
Sheet”, which the artist himself discusses with me (read below). The final track on the
album “The Wagoner’s Lad” is an acoustic testament of the melodic power and crisp
nature of Dudley’s voice. This track again has an ending that seems sudden and
unfulfilled, however your heart knows the story and song continue. Because the
Wagoner’s lad is “a slave to the highway for the rest of his life”.
Through Markus Payne Entertainment, I had the pleasure recently of asking Dudley a few
Armando | Your music has the imagery in my mind going everywhere, how do you tap
into songs like "The Winding Sheet", what you're inspiration?
Dudley | That song is a good example of how I work: it’s a mix of things
I’ve personally experienced, things from other people’s lives and things
I’ve imagined to fill in the spaces. As a kid in Kentucky, I lived by the railroad tracks
where the coal trains ran. And every time they passed, we would go down with a pail to
pick up the little pieces of coal that had fallen off. When I brought them home and burned
them in the fireplace, they looked to me like the vertebrae of coal miners, melting away.
So that’s something personal that haunted me. But then we also travelled through coal
country when I was a kid, so I had vivid memories of people we met there. And finally I’m
old enough now to have experienced death and what it’s like to be trapped with no good
choices. So the room in that song was very vivid to me, and every detail made me feel
something intensely: “the dirty light, the missing cough”. Just repeating those words
does it to me now. The song has to have power over my emotions first. Then it has a
mean something to you.
Armando | If you were stuck on a deserted island what (3) things would you want with
Dudley | A guitar, something to write with, and my lover. Is that boring?
www.ambiente.us JULY| JULIO 2010
T-Cells and T-Birds |A Review of Dudley Saunders’ Hit Album
‘The Emergency Lane’
By Armando Diaz, Jr.
I’m a real bad driver but he was so skinny,
that wind filled his skin up just like a balloon.
He looked like muscles to each passing car,
And they said hey that’s a fag / can lift up weights on a bar
And the emergency lane, that’s my middle of the road.
The traffic jams curse me to hell in code…
- Lyrics from the track “Bad Driver”
Welcome to the ‘dark side of the rainbow’, as one reviewer had put it. I actually prefer
to think of this as a thorny strawberry patch. At any rate welcome to the third studio
album by captivating singer/songwriter Dudley Saunders, released in 2007.
The glistening vocals held me in a trance as I realized I’m being drawn in and I know it,
and I liked it. What can I equate this to dear readers? I am not a fan of spiders, yes they
have their purpose but it’s just too many legs, too many eyes, and hairy and just not a
pleasant situation for me. And then suddenly, I smell the delicious aroma of baked
goods, cookies, tarts, berries, creams and a powdered sugar heaven (being diabetic I
can dream of this). Now where is this wonderful scent coming from? It’s coming from
Mr. Tarantula’s house over there, the one
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covered in all the web. But I just have
to get closer because it just smells so
good! An uncomfortable fear that
suddenly becomes masked and
enticing, that’s what the experience of
listening to this album was.
A hypnotic voice reminiscent of the
kind of twang I would typically
dismiss. Some pretty ill lyrics,
combined with sweeping acoustics
and electric shocks, an overwhelming
feeling of trespassing and forbidden
fruit and barbed wire, it was
Right away of course I took note of the
second track ‘Love Song for Jeffrey
Dahmer’’, I didn’t react I suppose the
way the average person would with
any ghast or disgust or a simple “what
the F***”, rather I found myself curious
again and after listening to it I wasn’t
sure what I was feeling? Guilt at
enjoying the song, and allowing
Armando | Explain to me the eroticism of “soiled skin and blood.”
Dudley | Hmm…Well, the best I can say is that we all feel alone inside our own skin,
and in sex, we secretly long to have someone break
through to find us, or we long to break through to someone else. We want someone to
go too far with us, cross our boundaries, break through to us. There’s a little violence in
all good sex. Polite sex makes us feel more horribly alone. We need passion, we need
to be dirty and thereby feel fully alive. If you aren’t losing control with me, I don’t know
why you’re in bed with me.
Armando | What are your favorite kinds of kisses?
Dudley |I like full contact kisses: open mouthed, yes, but full rolling contact with tongues
and inner lips. The worst thing is when you stick your tongue in a man’s mouth and it
just sits there in the open air, untouched. Come on, guys, make contact!
Well said dear Mr. Saunders, I don’t think I expected his passion to be anything less.
“The Emergency Lane” won "Outstanding Album of 2009" at the Out Music Awards in
New York, December 11, 2009
Dudley Saunders’ album “The Emergency Lane” is available for download on iTunes
For more information on Dudley Saunders please visit:
Markus Payne Management
CLICK HERE for more Armando Diaz, Jr. photos by Paula Himel
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