Charley Crockett will release his powerful new album
The Valley on September 20th via Son of Davy/Thirty Tigers. Recorded one week before Crockett underwent lifesaving open-heart surgery this past January, the album stirs with an introspection and urgency to tell his story. The Valleychronicles his hard upbringing on the south Texas border in San Benito, his single mom’s move to Dallas and the ten years he spent as a street performer.
Charley Crockett spent a decade on the street, making a living off tips he earned as a busker. He played the “old sounds of struggle” that he identifies with even now as a touring musician making a good living. Times were tough. His life was so sparse, he was grateful for a friend’s couch when he could get it.
But at 35, Crockett looks back on those years with the same thoughtful nature that marks his lyrics and his life. He was born to live off the street, at least for a while, he said in a phone interview for BandWagon, and he’s grateful for the experience.
It’s been a hell of a year for Charley Crockett. In January he had two open heart surgeries. No one would blame him for taking some time off and enjoying a little of the Gulf on his own. But not even the specter of heart failure could keep Charley from doing his thing.
Since the heart issues started, he’s recorded an album (his fourth in two years) and then got back on the road almost immediately. Here he was in New York City, headlining the Brooklyn Bowl: a local favorite, which houses a side-stage bowling alley. In some ways this was a homecoming show for Charley. As he said, the first time he played a set outside of the subway system was as an opener at the Brooklyn Bowl. Charley’s a man of the road though and his sound can’t quite be tied down either.
Some voices are unmistakable. True modern troubadour Charley Crockett has one such voice, and he knows how to use it. Street-trained and road-worn, Crockett's musical journey has bounced him around the globe, from his homeland of Texas, to New Orleans, Barcelona, Paris and more. At every stop in his journey, he's sharpened his skills as a singer of storytelling songs. But his latest twist in the road might also be his most cathartic.
When it comes to country, blues, and everything in between, Charley Crockett is a human encyclopedia and consummate performer of it all. And if you’re looking for more “diversity” in country music, Crockett has you covered there too, with African American, Jewish, and Caucasian blood coursing through his veins and a history with Cajun culture, all while being a direct descendant of Davy Crockett if you can believe it.