“Two remarkable people crafting a truly inspired piece of work…. forcefully to gently acoustic….and always full of passion, “Dupont Back Porches” weaves tales and tours as intimately expansive as anyone in the business. The gestalt of great songwriting; what a joy to listen to”
— WRKC 88.5 Wilkes-Barre, PA
“With each listen [to Dupont Back Porches], the listener can peel back more and more layers of the songs. It’s a simple recording. Just two of NEPA’s most gifted songwriters, sitting knee-to-knee in the studio with their guitars, making music. But there are stories in the songs. And they speak of everything from heartache, to isolation, to resiliency, to love, to changing the world. The result is an impressive artistic statement. Think Springsteen’s “Nebraska,” “The Ghost of Tom Joad” and “Devils and Dust,” with some NEPA flair.”
— Music on the Menu with Alan Stout
“When Tom Flannery sings, I listen. Closely. “Love and Streets” is filled with beautiful losers, winners, loss and life, delivered in a spare, direct feel that underscores the superb storytelling here. The Show” is one of the finest songs about baseball ever written…and I’ll stand on Chuck Brodsky’s coffee table in my running shoes and say that.”
-Jim Colbert, The Folk Show, WPSU
Love and Streets is an exceptional album from a master storyteller. Flannery here is at his best: plain spoken and real; intense and subtle. Life is a complex, sometimes unforgiving and painful journey that we are lucky to undertake. And Love and Streets captures that essence perfectly.
–The Vinyl Voyage
Tom Flannery lulls one into a false sense of security with his gentle vocal delivery and velvety guitar playing; he is actually presenting challenging ideas and a broad emotional scope using a simple lyrical
vocabulary alongside a surprisingly wide range of sounds and textures given that [Love and Streets] is just a guitar and a voice. Top notch!
Tom Flannery’s songwriting chops are in peak condition. to paraphrase the now famous call at the end of the 1973 belmont stakes, taken by triple-crown winner secretariat, “…tom flannery…is writing and recording….like a great machine”.
First it was “teen angst and the green flannel” from tom and the shillelaghs, the best original record i’d heard since “show and tell” from ed randazzo. now, on the heels of that, comes “love and streets”, a stripped-down, acoustic offering showcasing some of the best storytelling and wit this side of john prine and loudon wainwright.
Eleven songs, and the subject matter from track to track is wonderfully unexpected; the title cut, about desperate lives in desperate towns; “the show”, one of the best baseball narratives anyone’s ever written, period; “the indianapolis”, an epic folk tale of the tragic fate of the battleship that delivered the first atomic bomb during world war II: the wry “drunk driving”,about falling back on old habits and crutches, and “my lai” a riveting narrative about a g.i.’s firsthand account of the my lai massacre during the vietnam war in 1968 and it’s affect on his postwar existence. from start to finish, lyrically powerful songs with beautiful guitar figures and melodies to compliment the whole affair.
This one’s a must, just like “teen angst….” is. more great work from a prolific talent. tom flannery deserves major exposure.,,,can’t wait for the next one!
“With a nod towards Springsteen’s ‘The Ghost of Tom Joan’ and ‘Nebraska,’ Tom Flannery’s ‘Love and Streets’ offers a moody collection of story-telling numbers that showcase his ability to convey emotions and paint pictures with his music.”
– Alan K. Stout, 102.3-FM, The Mountain
“This is bona-fide rock n’ roll soul food. “Teen angst and the green flannel” kicks in the door as well as anything done by the stooges and the who in their primes, with the band-Wiggy Wegleski on guitar, Lenny Mecca on bass and Chris Condel on drums as tight, yet as freewheeling, as any i’ve heard in a while. Two ballads are interspersed as well; the plaintive “cincinnati”, and the painfully beautiful “maybe it’s true”, which closes out a truly great rock n’ roll record. Flannery’s a superb lyricist…bawdy wit one moment, beautifully poignant the next….a much louder louden wainwright III, whom i consider one of the best and most under-appreciated songwriters of the past 40 years or so.
In a perfect world. this album would be a number one smash; tom would be a millionaire with major label backing, a requisite posse to maintain, with some pretentious backstage pre-and-post concert rider setup, listening to all the wrong people, only to become fat and complacent, never to make a record anywhere NEAR this good again….aren’tcha glad we don’t live in a perfect world?
–Mike Naydock / OurTownRadio
“[Pete Townshend’s Ghost is] Dark and expressive….glorious and sobering. A delicately haunting slice of passion-laden songwriting. Immediate and gripping, akin to sitting in a living room at the feet of grizzled troubadours like Steve Earle or Bruce Springsteen, soaking in the wisdom of a life perhaps not so clean but still crying out for
“[Love in the Present Tense is] the usual insightful Tom Flannery take on events and circumstances, skillfully surrounded by melody and rhythm”
–Steve Clarke / Acoustic Planet CHES 101.5 FM Erin, Ontario
“There are three writers who have complete command of the English language and who inspire me…Bob Dylan, Loudon Wainright, and Tom Flannery……it’s a shame the latter is not as well known”.
–Singer Songwriter Jay Smar
“[The Home Office Sessions Vol I is] a fantastical creation. There is a celebratory magic to this gorgeous set of songs, even at its saddest, and it is arguably Flannery’s strongest yet”
–All Music Guide
“Tom Flannery’s music is a direct, confident continuation of a story-telling tradition; characters are well formed, lyrics flow effortlessly, harmonies are simple but never clichéd. It would be easy to forget just how well crafted his recordings are when lost in one of his subtle evocations of the minutiae of hard, everyday existences. Despite being part of a long tradition, Tom Flannery’s music never feels “retro”… just timeless. He is a very special writer and performer indeed.”
— Neil Luckett
“a great lyricist”
— Pete Seeger
“One of the most gifted songwriters to emerge at the turn of the century.”
— AMG All Music Guide
“Tom Flannery owns the songs he writes. The emotional expression behind these lyrical stories was not put there……but born there.”
— John Oakes / The Broadsheet
“The Anthracite Shuffle is a brilliant and eclectic tapestry of American folk music”
“[Drinking with Nick Drake is] intimate, direct, beautifully limpid… Flannery’s compositions somehow seem to transform average Americans into almost mythic dramatis personae…the strongest set of lyrics he has yet penned”
— AMG All Music Guide
“[Song About a Train] is a beautifully crafted and melodic CD”
— Boston Soundcheck Magazine
“…..a sharp debut CD. Flannery has a lot to say about the merits of the unspectacular, small town life and the interwoven lives of the inhabitants, and he does it well. One of the best of 1998.”
— Kevin’s Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews
“Tom Flannery[‘s] bone-chilling version of “Boom Boom Mancini” (from “Hurry Home Early – The Songs of Warren Zevon”) marks the disc’s pinnacle. Whereas Zevon’s versions paint Mancini as a modern-day folk hero, Flannery’s haunting vocal delivery gives the boxer’s story a terrifying, stone-cold killer interpretation.”
— Splendid Magazine