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Ray Mason in Concert

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Although he’s never without his trusty 1965 Silvertone guitar, Ray Mason has made a reputation over 22 years of club gigs as one of New England’s more durable and respected songwriters. His 14th solo album, Idiot Wisdom, on his own Captivating Music label (from www.raymason.com), finds him firmly in command of his style—a mix of Buddy Holly/Chuck Berry directness with the edge and clever wordplay he shares with other keen-eyed pop tunesmiths who emerged in the early ’80s, like Peter Holsapple and Chris Stamey of the db’s. Numbers like the life’s-tough-but-we-all-get-by “Water Off a Duck” and the sad-eyed “Life is Full of Missing” brim with blunt honesty. That’s a quality Mason’s unvarnished everyman’s voice is perfect for expressing. And this dedicated road dog is likely to keep doing so for decades more. -Ted Drozdowski, The Boston Phoenix

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