Full Circle (Album)
RC Burns’ debut album, “Full Circle” is set to be released on June 25, 2021.The album, recorded and produced over the last three years, is the culmination of nearly fifty years of songwriting.
In the early 1970’s RC Burns and JK Gulley were high school best friends who began writing songs together. In the beginning RC would write the lyrics and JK, who was a budding guitar virtuoso, would craft the melodies for their early songs. A few of the songs were well received at local high school dances and the pair set their sights on a lucrative songwriting career. They even put together a binder containing all of the lyrics and chords to their creations and titled it “How to Make Million Dollars Songwriting”. (JK still has that binder).
After high school RC and JK took different career paths in life. JK became an award winning country artist, singer/songwriter, producer, studio musician, teacher and mentor to other artists. RC graduated college and had a forty year career as an environmental professional.
Two things happened in 2018; RC retired from his long time career and he needed to find a 40th wedding anniversary gift for his wife, Theresa. After coming up empty, RC hit on the idea of doing a professional recording of a song he had written for Theresa a few years earlier. He contacted JK for help and through the magic on the internet they recorded “Rock of My Ages” in time for the anniversary party.
After completing the recording, JK asked RC if he had any other songs that would be suitable for recording. RC had some rough recordings of songs he had written over the years and sent them off to JK. A few weeks later JK came back and asked RC if he would be interested in doing an album project, since he thought that there was enough usable material to at least make an EP if not a full album. RC jumped at the opportunity, since it had been a life ling dream of his to record his songs.
So work began. RC lives in Kenora and JK lives in Kitchener a distance of about 1,800 kms so they had to figure out the best way to accomplish a large recording project. Thankfully for the project, the internet provided the solution. Using a stand-alone digital 8-track recorder, RC would record acoustic guitar and vocal tracks and upload them to a shared Dropbox. JK would take those recorded tracks and add other instruments and vocals and produce the finished tracks. RC managed to visit Kitchener a couple of times during the process and completed some of the guitar and vocal tracks at JK’s Blue Gull Studio.
There are thirteen tracks on the album including the title track “Full Circle” and the track that started it all, “Rock of My Ages”. RC’s songwriting influences include, John Prine, Steve Goodman, Stan Rogers and Gordon Lightfoot. There are several light hearted numbers including “Tim Horton’s Junkie”, “The Bright Lights of Prawda”, “Me and Johnny Walker”, “Older Cars and Younger Women” and “Me and Elvis and Jesus” (note: Me and Elvis and Jesus was a finalist in the 2019 Great American Song Contest). Other more serious songs include “Rich Dark Earth”, “Don’t Let the Whiskey Do the Talking”, “Twist of the Knife”, “At My Daddy’s Knee”, “the Fire In Your Eyes”, and “My Last Request” (the last song features RC playing a solo on the Great Highland Bagpipes).
RC Burns continues to write songs and is looking forward to recording and releasing more tracks in the near future.
Here's what RC Burns had to say about the musicians and supporters who helped him put this album together:
"I am so very grateful to my good friend and producer JK Gulley for putting together a stellar lineup of musicians to play on my debut album.
- First and foremost in the lineup is JK Gulley himself. What can I say about this multi-talented guy. JK plays acoustic, electric and slide guitar, mandolin and banjo as well as providing backup vocals and harmonies. He also coached me on my acoustic guitar work and vocals and put everything together with his magic touch at his Blue-Gull Studio to make me sound good. I couldn’t have done it without his guidance and patience.
- Next on the list is Ed Ham, another multi-instrumentalist who provided all of the drum and percussion work.
- A two-thumbs up to Jesse Turton who provided all of the bass tracks.
- Special thanks to Lance Anderson and Gary Kreller whose piano, keyboard and accordion added so much richness to my music.
- What would a country song be without a pedal steel guitar? Dale Rivard added just the right twang as only a master of the instrument can.
- Shane Guse injected some very fine fiddle licks that were the icing on the cake in several songs.
There are a few other folks I’d like to thank for helping me to get this album completed and ready for release:
- I’d like to give a shout out to my good friend, pipe instructor and Pipe Major Wes Sheppard - he’s been teaching me how to play bagpipes for over 30 years and hasn’t given up on me yet.
- Also thanks to Mati Haskell for putting together the cover art for the album – you have a great eye for what looks good.
- Most of all I’d like to thank my dear wife Theresa Burns for her love and support for over 40 years. You truly are the “Rock of My Ages”.