Liner Note Author: Roy Ames.
An oddly named release, 1988's BIRDS CAN'T ROW BOATS is an easy-going, primarily acoustic set of country blues-style Winter originals and well-chosen covers. Even on the ramshackle version of "Blue Suede Shoes," the tempo barely rises above a crawl, and the ragged-but-right trio performances sound so off-the-cuff that one can't help but think this was an after-hours jam session--or possibly a rehearsal--where the tape recorder just happened to be running.
Winter's minute-long "Don't Drink Whiskey" features some scarifying slide and a nearly-incomprehensible lead vocal that suggests Winter had disregarded the title's advice before laying down the track. Only three of the album's 15 songs break the three-minute mark, and only the nearly six-minute "Goin' Down Slow" features much soloing by Winter. BIRDS CAN'T ROW BOATS is strictly for fans, but it's an intimate, low-key gem.