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Reviews: Pat James ~ It's My Life|
Posted on Saturday, July 01, 2006 @ 06:03:45 UTC
Artist: Pat James
CD: It's My Life
Home: Phoenix, Arizona
Style: Classic Country
Quote: "His pleasing tenor voice has a slight warble, like some of the best country singers, and a tight band that really makes each cut shine."
By Jamie Anderson
I grew up hearing live country music in my living room. My dad, one of the musicians making that music, complains now that country music today is just a bunch of guys and gals strutting around in tight pants, pretending they’re rock stars. My dad isn’t alone in this sentiment and it has nothing to do with age. If you’re a fan of good solid country music then look no further than Pat James. He’s got a fine collection of tunes, originals and covers, that’ll put a smile on my father’s face. Yours too. His pleasing tenor voice has a slight warble, like some of the best country singers, and a tight band that really makes each cut shine.
A lively pedal steel played by Danny Sneed opens the first song “She’s Kind” and makes an appearance in almost every song, adding an emotional element that’s so key to good country. And damn, does he tear it up. I especially like what he does on the Marty Robbins tune “I’m Gonna Be a Cowboy.” It’s a foot tappin’ swing tune that’d make Marty proud. Fiddle player Mike Cirillo and guitarist Billy Abdo ain’t no slobs either, each contributing parts so clean and tight you’d swear they were Nashville session players. There are three other Marty Robbins tunes. It’s clear that James is a fan of his and I don’t blame him. His story songs are well loved by many and don’t get heard enough. And like Marty, Pat is also from Arizona. There’s something about that desert wind that breeds good country.
What would a good country album be without some wheepy ballads? Pat does a great job with “Farewell Party,” a tune by Lawton Williams, and “What in the World,” an original that asks what we do with all the lost souls in this world. Indeed.
Pat shows his jazzier side with Willie Nelson’s “Night Life” and even covers George Harrison’s “Something” including, of course, a pedal steel. He maintains the integrity of both songs, making them his own.
I’m sending this CD to my dad. You may want to pick up one too.
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