Their meeting was by pure chance in a local music shop, back in 1997. Malcolm, a guitarist was in the shop drinking coffee and making it known that he was looking for a singer to form an act. Carl and a songwriter called Brian, came into the shop to place an advertisement for a guitarist. The idea was to form a duo to perform songs live from Carl's two previous albums and help to arrange and record a third album. Malcolm and Carl were introduced to each other and the duo ABRAMS was formed.
Describing themselves as a Country Music Act with a difference, the duo are making quite a name for themselves on the U.K country music club circuit, where I was lucky enough to catch them in action recently. Carl, who is originally from Liverpool and has been a professional singer since the 60s, has an unusual singing style, one that I can only describe as being similar to Joe Cocker as he puts much feeling into each and every song he performs. Malcolm, an excellent guitarist, has also been performing since the 60s, having played with the 'Teenbeats' and 'Chets.'
"Rich Pickins" contains 12 tracks, all penned by Shipley & Shipley (Brian?) and vary from slow love ballads like "Written Down In Stone" through tales of heartbreak in "No Flowers" and "Let Me Down Lightly" to the lively sing-a-long, "Proper Job." (my personal favourite) I also liked the album's opening track, "Sweet Memories," a bouncy tune about trying to start over again in a troubled relationship, complete with a Duane Eddy style guitar intro. In fact, most of the album has a 60s pop feel to it, (Mungo Jerry, 3 Dog Night etc) mixed in with a sprinkling of country music and I think the duo will find much appeal with audiences over the age of 45 who grew up with the music of that era.
For a self produced album, "Rich Pickins" has been put together very well by Malcolm in his own recording studio. If you see this duo advertised in your area, get along to see them, you won't be disappointed.