By C.M. Wilcox of Country California
Folk hero and, per his own Twitter bio, "country singer/songwirter man" (sic) Gary Floater released a third tribute album to himself earlier this year. Who Cares finds Floater staring down his demons and battling for control of his own musical destiny. Things seldom go according to plan: Even on his own tribute album, he has trouble quieting the bar to start, fails to get the crowd involved in a singalong, finds that nothing happens when he yells for a solo, and can't get his band to quit playing at the end.
Still, he's willing to try just about anything. Environmental song about being gay for nature ("Nature Song"), check. Country love duet with female singer ("Two Boring Losers in Love"), check. Legend of an Irish ancestor sung with fake Irish accent ("Seamus Was a Hero"), check. Dramatic story song about falling in love with a mysterious late-night grocery shopper in a pink muumuu whose "make-up made her look surprised" ("Midnight at the Grocery Store"), check. Shoehorning as many bits of cliched wisdom as possible into one song ("Whatever Man," where he offers "you can lead a gift horse to water, but it's either sink or swim"), check. Numerous songs about a comically down-on-his-luck country singer/songwirter man trying to buoy himself up enough to face another apathetic band and sparse crowd ("Who Cares," "Let's Get This Over With," "Thanks Me"), check.
As a side project by someone not actually named Gary Floater, Who Cares is about having an outlet for some silly songs. But within its own little world, it's also about the indignity, endured by all artists at some point and most artists on an almost continual basis, of laying one's soul bare and being met with indifference. In that respect, Gary Floater is more than just a fiction and a lark. He's a survivor. An honest-to-God inspiration, pink muumuus and all.
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