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REVIEW
Walt Wilkins and the Mystiqueros - Diamonds in the Sun

by Keith Howerton
Walt Wilkins - Diamonds in the Sun(Oct 2007) The first noticeable and delightful aspect of the new Walt Wilkins record Diamonds in the Sun is that it is not really just a Walt Wilkins record. It is a Mystiqueros record. The buzz for over a year has been about how good the Mystiqueros truly are. Everyone who has viewed the band live can testify to the obvious conclusion that they are one of the best and most entertaining bands on tour. Diamonds in the Sun is the CD confirmation of what all those fans already knew.

The Mystiqueros are truly a band with a halo above them. Diamonds in the Sun is full of great arrangements and harmonies with songwriting from band members and other notable writers. In keeping with Walt’s mastery of storytelling, the CD delivers a sequence of chapters telling the story of the musical hard life with romance and purity that puts the listener in the songs and on the stage. No one can tell a story like Walt and the experiences of a touring musician is a favored well from which to draw the soul-water of songwriting. It is that tough but ultimately rewarding life on stage that is the foundation of most of the songs on Diamonds in the Sun. “Honky Tonk Road,” “Red River Blues,” “Just Like Hank,” and “Big Shiny Cars” all deliver clips of the same theme that any touring artist can relate to: it is hard life, but they live it to the fullest with gusto and appreciation one night at a time.

Produced by Texas master producer Lloyd Maines, Diamonds in the Sun is bound to be one of the top five records of 2007. The Mystiqueros of Ramon Rodriquez, Bill Small, John Greenberg, Marcus Eldridge, and Walt Wilkins are one of the best live performances around and now they have a record to back it up. The CD should be played repeatedly for old and new fans. It is a work of art of the highest quality. A must have. May God bless the Mystiqueros for giving us the great helping of musical soul-soup.

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