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Story Archives: Carr crafts country for Cyrus cousin
|Carr crafts country for Cyrus cousin|
SONG BY WINNSBORO WRITER
ON BOBBY CYRUS DEBUT ALBUM
Jimmy Carr believes country music is written from the heart and says his heart is "with the common man living with the struggles of everyday life."
Carr should know something about country music. After all, the Winnsboro man has crafted ditties for legends including Hank Williams Jr., Ken Mellons and Gene Simmons.
Recently, he penned a song, "Bodan's Home" that up-and-coming country artist Bobby Cyrus recorded for his yet untitled debut album.
Carr feels Cyrus, who recorded the album in Nashville, will soon be as well known as his famous cousins, country star Billy Ray Cyrus and his Disney Channel sensation daughter, Miley.
Billy Ray Cyrus appears with Cyrus on "Milk Man's Eyes," a track on the album.
Carr, who worked in Nashville as a song writer for nearly two decades, became friends with Cyrus while living in Music City
"Jimmy was one of those characters in the crowd when I came to town," Cyrus said. "We started talking and struck up a friendship and stayed in contact. I would call him up and we would go out to eat."
Carr eventually played Cyrus a demo recording of "Bodan's Home," a song inspired by an old plantation home rumored to be haunted that once stood in Richland Parish.
Cyrus said he was impressed by the song and felt it was perfect for his album, which he describes as a mix of every kind of country music he loves.
"I loved the story and what I knew we could do with the music. It's kind of an edgy sound," Cyrus said. "I loved the mystique of 'Bodan's Home'—it's got Louisiana all over it."
Like "Bodan's Home," Carr writes a lot about his experiences growing up in northeast Louisiana.
One of his best-known contributions to country music is "Catahoula Curr Dog," a song he co-wrote about Louisiana's official state canine, the Catahoula Leopard Dog.
"Catahoula Curr Dog," which was recorded by late county star Gene Simmons (not to be confused with rock star Gene Simmons of Kiss) is a popular Internet download and can be found on a volume two of the Country Roads box set beside songs from notables like Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Roger Miller.
Carr said seeing a song he had a hand in on the country classics collection makes him swell with pride.
"The people we are on the album with is an honor. When you have a song played beside songs by people like that—that's what it's all about," Carr said.
Carr is also proud of the friendship he forged over the years with Cyrus and his family, especially Cyrus' late father, Bob Cyrus, who also appears on Cyrus' album.
Another Cyrus relative, Eric McNulty, who is married to Billy Ray Cyrus' sister, chose to play a Carr song, "Born to be an Eagle" in the delivery room last year when his wife was having their first born child.
"I would have to say, that's big compliment," Carr said.
The song was recorded by a Rayville man, Frankie Beeze, who is trying to break into the Nashville music scene with an album Carr is currently producing.
Carr believes Beeze's dream of becoming a Nashville star is within reach.
"If you can dream, you can accomplish, even if you are from a little town," Carr said.
In the photo:Jimmy Carr of Winnsboro, who spent 18 years as a Nashville songwriter, holds an album that includes the single, "Catahoula Curr Dog," a song he wrote with late country star Gene Simmons. Carr recently contributed a song for Bobby Cyrus' debut album. Cyrus is a cousin of country music star Billy Ray Cyrus and teen sensation, Miley Cyrus. (Sun photo by Monica Huff)