Photo: Ruth Kaiser / Courtesy of the artist

Rick Shea Walks Us Through Perilous Times With “The World’s Gone Crazy” (premiere)

California singer-songwriter Rick Shea, whose credits include stints with Dave Alvin and Chris Gaffney delivers a dispatch on life of this most trying of years, 2020.

Rick Shea‘s new album, Love & Desperation, arrives on 23 October via Tres Pescadores Records. The album finds the studio and stage veteran in fine form. He draws from influences as wide-ranging as his past credits, including tenures with Chris Gaffney’s Cold Hard Facts, Dave Alvin’s Guilty Men, singer-songwriter Katy Moffatt, and with the legendary Wanda Jackson.

Joining him on “The World’s Gone Crazy”, the record’s latest single, are Phil Parlapiano (accordion), Steve Nelson (bass), and Shawn Nourse (drums, tambourine). The video that accompanies the track provides us with a jaunt through the California landscape and the perilous landscape of this moment in time. Musically, the song feels perfectly in tune with Shea’s countrified past, with dashes of Bakersfield rubbing elbows with cowpunk sensibilities. Though he draws on storied musical idioms (country, blues, and gospel), the track retains a thoroughly contemporary sensibility.

“Things have been upside down in the world for a while now. I wrote this song after watching a particularly harrowing episode of The Rachel Maddow Show,” says Shea. “Even though this song was inspired by current events, I wanted it to sound more like an older song, like a gospel song, like The Staple Singers, and not be tied so directly to what is happening today. I’m certain we’ll get past the events of these last few years, and we’ll all be stronger and better for it, but we still have a ways to go, ‘hold on to the ones that you love.'”

As for the video, Shea adds, “The locations are probably recognizable to some folks, especially anyone who explores Southern California¹s desert areas. We shot at the Whitewater Preserve near Palm Springs, Pioneertown, and out by Giant Rock in Landers. Photographer and filmmaker Ron Resnick deserves most all the credit for this video, I made a few small suggestions and spent a day shooting my scenes, but Ron researched and found all the other background footage and put it all together beautifully.”