- Orlando Stricklen
Orlando Stricklen from folk music capitol of the world Mountain View, Arkansas. A natural talent, Orlando began at a young age teaching himself how to play guitar, write and sing. He wowed audiences in New York and New Jersey. Has made his home in Nashville where he continues to drag everybody into the great world of soulful country only he can give. He loves his fans and loves his family, they mean the world to him.
- Mountain View, Arkansas
This is clearly a very heartfelt song about a subject not often tackled from this angle. Of course this has a lovely lyric that tells a story, although sometimes it repeats certain words and sentiments - you could add more details in certain areas. I really like the mandolin work and the song has a solid, airy mix that isn't too overproduced. I do think that your vocals are quite weak and need some real work - because the mix has lots of space in it, your vocals are left vulnerable and bare, and they're not strong enough to carry things. If they had been part of bigger production with several layers of harmonies etc and even some vocal edits, it would have been fine, but here they don't work and it impacts the recording.
Great voice and energy! Especially for a fairly raw demo like this. I’d ask what you are looking to focus on, is it your songwriting? If so, have you thought about networking with other songwriters like yourself in order to find places to bring your songs to other artists’ attention? This song is worthy of that. If it’s performing rather than songwriting, I see from your website you were out a lot in 2014 (website should be updated!), wondering how that went, and if you’re still out there performing, and what feedback you’re getting from fans. You’ve got talent and a great country music style voice that you can work with. I think its just a matter of how much you can prioritize and work it. This isn’t in shape yet to include on playlists or in promotions, but thank you for your submission, hope this has been helpful, good luck with your music!
I really enjoyed the personable presentation here -- I usually don't get submissions from artists in front of a camera just playing raw and live, so this was appreciated. Onto to the track, "Trying to Do Me" showcases Stricklen's striking vocals, particularly how his melancholic quiver collides beautifully with the acoustic strums, which nicely alternate from gentle to forceful. "There's a line at the end of a tunnel, just pray it's not a train," is a nice piece of wit that helps guide the track into the pleasantly simple chorus, "just trying to do me." This is a sincere, well put-together country effort that reminds me favorably of Drive-By Truckers in its relay of sincere and highly relatable sentiments, whether it's hoping for light at the end of a tunnel, wallowing in a dimly lit bar, or both. Really solid work here, Orlando. Look out for a post on Obscure Sound in the near future, and keep up the good work. -Mike
Thanks for sharing this with me Orlando! I really enjoyed listening to your song. Though I'm not a country fan, you clearly have a fantastic voice with distinctive country stylings. I enjoyed the concrete imagery in your lyrics, though next time I'd suggest including them in your description so listeners can follow along. I noticed some timing issues. Specifically, the second verse and third verse leading into the chorus seem to be missing bars - which threw off the groove. The title confuses me. If a woman were singing this, I'd assume "trying to do me" would refer to men wanting to have sex with her. In this case, I guess you're saying you're trying to be yourself? It's not always clear in context. Unless you're making videos specifically for your super fans who already know the songs, I suggest leaving out the introduction and going right into the song. You can save the explanation for afterward, or better yet, the YouTube description. My followers are generally electronic music fans, which I suppose are the polar opposite of country fans ;). So I'm sorry to not share the video, but hopefully my comments are kinda sorta helpful, as it sounds like this is still a work in progress.