When the weather is beautiful and there are plenty of pooches and pusses for the picking, The Pulse will head out for a walk, too, to snap a shot for its “Pet of the Month” section, shedding more light on one of Murfreesboro’s many four-legged companions out walking their owners. Using the same loving intention for the furry buddies this publication has, Kentuckian turned local poet, painter and grin-worthy picker Aaron Raitiere leads this loving notion in the direction of a sound medium by releasing his latest five-track EP Rescue Dog Blues last December out of One Tooth Records.
Taking a musical snapshot of his own pet of choice, Raitiere pulled inspiration for the album from a saved and sweetened ex-fighting pit bull named Snow and the lucky pup’s homely situation after the two found one another. Rescue Dog Blues obediently sits as a perfect listen for the entire family as well as this solo bluegrass-blues-folk musician’s third musical venture with co-writer Julie Stein to follow up another animal musing in 2011, Bear Country (about bears).
Immediately on Rescue, happiness ensues hearing his zeal for Snow and hers for Raitiere in the leading title track sung through Raitiere’s depiction of Snow’s endearing and grateful post-rescue thoughts accompanied by his clanky, finger-picked bluesy acoustic and overdubbed back-up vocals reminiscent of an 11-year-old’s birthday party performance sans overdub. The following “Love is an Ability” offers a deeper, enlightening perspective of the relationship, pondering about a way dogs teach humans to be good, but in a similar musical styling as the preceding track. Mid-album picks up, though, when Raitiere pulls out the tempo-stops in Blues Park while dueting with Snow herself in “Good to the Bone,” and praising her for all she’s become, including a bodyguard, workout partner, and best of all, chick magnet. If you’re wondering how to tell it’s a her, give a listen to the final track “Pound Puppy” right after the tamed guitar plucks of the continuing praise and introspection of “I Think my Dog is a Person Too” just before it.
If there’s ever a selling point for rescuing an animal from the shelter (or if an animal shelter ever needed jingles), this album certainly provides it in every energetic word and strum.
Rescue Dog Blues can be found on CDbaby, Amazon and iTunes for a fair price or through Raitiere’s home page, www.aaronraitiere.com along with his other artistic endeavors, such as original poems, paintings, photos and past pickings (some free to download).