Brought up in the wee burg of Sheffield, Iowa, Dick Prall benefits from the kind of personality that draws others to him, not out of brashness, but because he simply likes people. He enjoys a good time and, in doing so, ensures that those around him have one, as well. As a performer, Prall brings that same uncommon ability to the stage by turning an 'everyman' experience into something fresh, moving and memorable. Prall has a fondness for classic, thoughtful songwriting and it's best explained by his early diet of melodic lyricists such as Buddy Holly, Lennon/McCartney, Elvis Costello, and Paul Westerberg. As any good student of his passion, Prall incorporates those same musical tendencies in his own unique way: writing delicately crafted songs that straddle the line between heartfelt personal confessions and universally familiar storytelling. His strong vocal style easily landed him the role of lead singer in various start-up bands around Iowa. It wasn't until he finally picked up a guitar out of an inability to effectively communicate his own musical ideas that he wrote what would become 1998's Somewhere About Here. An album No Depression magazine diametrically complemented as both 'a track-by-track monster' and 'a tiny, humble gem.' Two very busy years followed the dissolution of the Dick Prall Band, a move to Chicago, and a newly added role as father, but Prall continued to hone his singer/songwriter chops, this time under the moniker Starch Martins. After the release of the critically acclaimed Dressing up the Failure, Starch Martins spent the next couple of years on the road playing to a growing fan base in the Midwest while building a nationwide following in support of artists such as Glen Phillips (Toad The Wet Sprocket), Ari Hest, The Verve Pipe, Michelle Branch and Mike Doughty (Soul Coughing). Taking stock of the music business and the uphill battle that faces independent musicians in today's climate, Prall decided to drop the band name and continue as a solo artist, allowing for a wider variety of musical arrangements. February 2005 brought the release of Prall's long-awaited, third full-length CD, fizzlebuzzie. With the support of a stellar line-up that included bassist/guitarist Brian McDonald (Alice Peacock, Shimmer), drummer Greg Miller (Drive, Telemundo), keyboardist/vocalist Sarah Ferguson (Secret Girl, Bogo) and lead guitarist Paul Stebner (Starch Martins), Prall was able to begin putting the songs on record the way he'd always heard them in his head. Adding the talents of Alison Chesley on cello (Verbow, Poi Dog Pondering), Max Crawford on trumpet (Poi Dog Pondering), and saxophonist Nate LePine (NRG Ensemble, Smog) helped get him even closer to his vision. The final complement in making fizzlebuzzie the beautifully diverse album it would become was the recruitment of gifted engineer and co-producer Colonel J. Shapera (Remy Zero, Verbow, Drive). The end result is what Prall refers to as 'the album that we all wanted to hear.' fizzlebuzzie shirks the expectations of the mainstream and channels the sincerity packed inside towards elements and experiences that relate to almost everyone, all the while maintaining this fresh batch's personal nature. Take for instance the nostalgic anthem entitled 'Saturday's Changed' that compares the often uncomfortable, but simpler days of childhood to the drain that can be experienced as an adult. Or spend four minutes as a spectator within 'Great Admirer;' the story of a man's love for a woman whom he never speaks to, but is witness to the abuses she incurs from a current beau. The ten solid tracks end with the lead character's habitual wavering in 'Learning to Merge;' a dizzying venture that resounds with Prall's ever-changing vocals and the album's main cast of musicians delivering a handsomely jarring performance. These are just a few reasons why fizzlebuzzie has received rave reviews from such outlets as Performing Songwriter Magazine, Time Out Chicago, Midwestbands.com, Waycoolmusic.net, and MilesofMusic.com. Dick Prall is a singer/songwriter in it's obvious definition, but this artist achieves a level of creativity that extends far beyond the traditional troubadour. He approaches each song as the last one he intends to write, placing all his energies into creating entrancing tunes that hold the elements of the classic songwriters who've influenced him. Fizzlebuzzie's well-crafted and understated quality allows Prall's extraordinary melodies to wander around in your head long after the final chord rings out...
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