If it weren’t enough to have the likes of Gary Lefkowith and Mike Rogers behind the glass for his latest performance in the studio, Charlie Gracie is bringing much of the same energy that launched his career all the way back in the 1950s in the new single “Can’t Stop Rock’n.” Powered by a fiery guitar riff that he seems to straddle with ease, “Can’t Stop Rock’n” seeks to highlight just how little this incredible icon of the pop/rock genre has aged over the years, and one could even make the argument that he’s sounding fresher here than ever. Rocking to some of the nimblest grooves to enter his discography in a long time, Gracie is an incendiary force to be reckoned with from beginning to end in this track, and I would say that regardless of whether or not you’re one of his many disciples, his most recent offering is one that every melody lover needs to hear this autumn season. His is a legacy that hasn’t stopped developing, and that simply isn’t something I’m able to say about the vast majority of players to emerge from his scene (nor his generation).
CHARLIE GRACIE WIKIPEDIA: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlie_Gracie
The guitar does a lot of electrified growling in this song, but it’s never so much that it starts to water down the main melody at all – the polar opposite, really. There’s such a kinship between the swagger of his vocal delivery and the heat coming off of the riffing that it’s easy to see why he’s remained as invested in the medium as he has.
Never do we catch him sounding unprepared or hesitant with his performance here; if anything, he’s so eager to break into the chorus that the catharsis it contains starts to spill over the sides and into the preceding ascent. “Can’t Stop Rock’n” was not designed to change anything about the mainstream rock n’ roll model as it presently stands in the year 2020, but to instead pay tribute to the layers of history that have amalgamated largely due to the persistence of musicians like Gracie, who has yet to leave his position in the hierarchy of the genre.
I knew I was going to be in for a treat when it was announced that Mr. Charlie Gracie was going to be dropping a new single this year, and now that I’ve had the chance to catch up with him in “Can’t Stop Rock’n,” I can vouch for his being as authentic today as he was in his debut single. For a man who was literally the first rockstar to emerge from the Philly underground, he doesn’t sound like an aging veteran who has grown jaded with the culture he in part helped to foster and create with his music – actually, he seems more in love with it than ever before.
This isn’t a throwback to his past nor something you should expect to see advertised in a late night infomercial; “Can’t Stop Rock’n” is vintage Charlie Gracie for a new generation, and it’s the perfect rock listen to kick off your holiday season.