October 26, 2006

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Howie Newman, Trust Me, You’ll Like It
Major League Records, 2006

Local humor-rock-shlub Newman is from Melrose but will head up thisaway for a set at Riddles Tavern in Merrimack on Oct. 30, so if you like folkie-bluesies who use Big Dig jokes as lyrics, be ready for a religious experience. For the other 99 percent of the population who’d rather get a medically serious hangnail than head out on a Monday night, Newman’s the type who’d die happy if the Chronicle TV show used one of his tunes in a montage, and no further evidence is needed than “Drivin’ in Boston Is Drivin’ Me to Drink,” which may not give you a sharp image of what this sounds like — James Taylor smiling smarmily during a guest vocal role in a Randy Newman one-off — but it should put you inside his rotten head. If that’s not enough, the press blurb brags that he’s the guy who wrote “Blasted in the Bleachers,” which must have played on WEEI’s Big Show or whatnot. His newest baseball gag is “Doug Mientkiewicz,” which would put Remdog into a giggling fit, not that there’s anything that wouldn’t. A-

— Eric W. Saeger