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Posted January 24, 2012
Pickler puts traditional country on a pedestal with dirty country tunes and nostalgic heart wrenching ballads
"This is just going to be Kellie, like it or leave it," she says. "I don't expect people to like me or like my music. I want them to, but I can't make them. If I can't be me, then I don't want to do it." - Kellie Pickler on the new album.
6 years ago, I saw something special in a young, humble blonde girl from a small town in North Carolina called Albemarle on the famous or infamous television show, "American Idol". Something about her stuck. Maybe it was her naive personality, not vacuous, just innocent. She is unbelievably genuine. I fell in love with her debut album, "Small Town Girl", which seemed more real than anything I'd heard. Kellie is really one of a kind.
Aside from her obvious pulchritude lies a bolstering personality screaming to get out. If you ever see Kellie in concert, you will notice right away that she is nothing but herself; She is a real, down-at-home, country girl, raised on the classics and living a country lifestyle. With this album, you can take a trip down the country road that is and was Kellie's story. Quite frankly, she blows other comparable female artists out of the water, making their efforts look like child's play while she is effortless in singing straight from her heart in a fashion that could only be innate.
This album takes you from her estranged relationship to her mother (the heartbreaking ballad "Mother's Day" to a fun, relaxing story of commitment to her husband, Kyle Jacobs("Rockaway"). One thing that separates her from the rest is your devotion to telling a real story. The words she's singing were hand picked for her.
Kellie is a lover of the classics. In countless interviews, she's mentioned her avid listening to traditional country artists such as Tammy Wynette, Dolly Parton, and Loretta Lynn. "Stop Cheating On Me" is hauntingly beautiful, and could almost be confused for any of the three of them. But Kellie graciously pays tribute to traditional country in a world where country radio is ruled by payola, catchy beats, and overproduced vocals. "Where's Tammy Wynette" and "Unlock That Honky Tonk" are homegrown, catchy and unmistakably country. "Long As I Never See You Again" and "Turn On The Radio and Dance" have a backroads, nostalgic feel, and are dripping with emotion that you could just dive into as she sings.
One only needs to listen to a few clips to understand that Kellie is up to this point, one of the most underrated artists out there. "100 Proof" is a masterpiece. One would hope that this album will allow Kellie to surge into a place of recognition and that country radio will not let this masterpiece slip through the cracks! This CD is an essential for any fan of country music out there.
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