‘Songs from the Scrub’ CD is about Cedar Key, made in Cedar Key

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By Kellie Parkin

A new CD now available in local shops features Cedar Key resident Matthew Chatowsky sings and plays all the instruments on the album – which he recorded in his home.

Matt says the album and its songs are uniquely Cedar Key. “The CD is entirely local,” Matt said. “They’re about Cedar Key and produced in Cedar Key – all done in my Cedar Key house.”

The music doesn’t fit into any one particular genre.  It’s part blues, part country, a little rock, and some folk.

“(T)ake blues, rock, and country then sprinkle in some jazz and folk; throw them all in a big pot and let it simmer for 10 years. The result is a truly unique sound that comes from the heart,” says a bio posted on his website HYPERLINK "http://www.matthewsky.com/"www.matthewsky.com.

“I hate being set in any category,” he said. “I want to approach with a blank canvas. If it’s not really who you are, then it’s not really your music.”

His music integrates vocals with guitar, bass and harmonica.

 An old Crown Royal bag of harmonicas he carries with him always has one in the right key.

“The harmonica adds a whole new dimension of music.”

Many of the songs on Matt’s CD offer glimpses of island lifestyle. “ ‘Nothing to Do’ is a very Cedar Key song. I think about it when I’m traveling and I realize how great Cedar Key is.

“ ‘Gulf Coast Mud’ is another one,” he said. “There are other nice places out there. But there’s something about the lifestyle here that keeps bringing me back. I want to live where it’s okay to have mud on your shoes.”

Matt began playing the guitar about 14 years ago when recovering from a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the waist down. “My sister bought me a guitar…The only reason I tried it was because it was something different to do than think about being paralyzed.

“My life is so enriched with music in it.”

For the sake of simplicity, Matt has shortened his name for the stage. You can find the CD “Songs from the Scrub” by Matthew Sky at Island Woods Gift Shop, Kona Joe’s Island Café, and the Market. It is also available when he plays at Coconuts on Wednesday evenings.