Write what you know. For singer-songwriter, Aaron Burdett this comes naturally. Aaron’s original Americana music blends folk-rock, bluegrass, and blues into a sound that’s original yet comfortingly familiar.
Aaron recently released his sixth studio album, Tinderbox, which showcases songs of hope and heartache. When asked about the title of this project Aaron stated, “Well, going back from the title… truthfully album titles are usually a song with imagery but ambiguous at the same time. Nothing to specific or concrete. Recently, I have pulled it from a song on the album that I felt like could stand a little more attention. “Tinderbox Heart” is a really strong song and has a lot of emotional depth, it is not necessarily a representative track but is a stand-alone piece.”
There are numerous things that differentiates this album from prior albums. Tinderbox is the first album that Aaron has recorded in studio with the same band that he has been playing with on the road. Over the last few years the band has morphed into a camaraderie, consisting of Jeff Hinkle (bass guitar), James Kylen (percussion), and Jackson Dulaney (lap steel/electric guitar), that brought a special sound to the studio that was solid and concise.
Another stand-out for Tinderbox is that it is the first album that Aaron has fully released from concept to recording with his new label, Organic Records. Fruits of My Labor was Aaron’s last release and while it was still an Organic project, the album was basically finished by the time Aaron signed. There were some tweaks and improvements made in studio with the label prior to its release.
“They [Organic Records] have done several things for me including raising my profile not only professionally, but personally,” said Aaron. “Working with them has inspired a confidence in me that I am not sure that I had before. There is something to be said to have people who believe in me, my music, and my songwriting as much as I do. It has been subtle, but that support means a lot. It is really nice to know that after a decade of putting out albums independently – with very little industry and professional help – that things are really coming together now.”
Tinderbox was produced by Tim Surrett of the award-winning band, Balsam Range and was a project under Organic that Aaron felt was his first real collaboration with his new record family. Aaron shared a singular perspective on the world around us, connections to places and people, and the simple pleasures of life through his heartfelt, thoughtfully crafted songs.
“I knew when I was collecting ideas and writing songs that I had an album in mind. And I start thinking about the album and recording about six months out to give myself time to pull things together,” said Aaron.
Aaron spends about four to five months prior to recording crafting his songs. Aaron said that his writing inspiration comes from phrases and ideas that come up throughout his everyday life and what he is going through.
“This is a high level league,” said Aaron. “Playing on a bigger field makes me work harder at it and I compare my work to the best people in the field. If I want to play with the big boys and girls, I need to write and perform like the big boys and girls.”
Tinderbox’s message largely focuses on triumph over adversity and survival through hardship, all tinged with an attitude of defiance and conviction. Heavily acoustic, the album shows a lot of grit, a word that just as easily describes the artist himself. Burdett, like the working class folk he writes about, is a builder, or rather, a craftsman. His tools are voice, pen and guitar.
With Burdett’s vocals in the Van Morrison, John Hiatt, and even Jack Johnson camp, critics are quick to attribute his greatest impact to his authentic singing voice. However, the combination of his prolific writing, arranging, and performance proves that he is a significant artist on every level.
For more information on Aaron Burdett and Tinderbox: www.aaronburdett.com