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Be as You Are
     

Be as You Are

4.7 14
by Kenny Chesney
 

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Seriously mellowing out, Kenny Chesney offers up a tune stack that mostly comprises thoughtful, relaxed meditations on the good things he’s found in life, informed by the island sensibility he has co-opted from one Jimmy Buffett. An acoustic-based ode to the title’s old blue chair kicks off the proceedings, Chesney’s fingerpicking providing the backdrop for a

Overview

Seriously mellowing out, Kenny Chesney offers up a tune stack that mostly comprises thoughtful, relaxed meditations on the good things he’s found in life, informed by the island sensibility he has co-opted from one Jimmy Buffett. An acoustic-based ode to the title’s old blue chair kicks off the proceedings, Chesney’s fingerpicking providing the backdrop for a catalogue of warm memories associated with the chair’s lifetime in the household (it’s a spiritual kin to an early Mary-Chapin Carpenter gem, "This Shirt"). The lure, and allure, of island life is beautifully evoked in the lilting "Somewhere in the Sun," all graceful rhythm and Hallmark-burnished sentiments extolling the languorous, stress-free pace of things down where our galaxy’s biggest star shines brightest. A gentle shuffle and the subtle cries of a pedal steel heighten a bittersweet memory of a still-vivid summer love, "Something Sexy About the Rain," a genuinely sensuous linking of the movements of the heart and the rhythms of the natural world. On a lighter, upbeat note, "Guitars and Tiki Bars," celebrates a carefree life enriched by "a whole lotta love" and emphasizes the point with a celebratory Caribbean rhythm replete with a burbling organ and the happy ping of steel drums; a funky little acoustic-keyed number, "Key Lime Pie," describes an idyllic world centered on an affection for the titular delicacy. "Magic" is the real treasure here. In a fine, pop-style crooner’s voice, Chesney enumerates the joys of the tropical life in a slow, bluesy arrangement for the wee small hours, its swaying rhythm marked by an intoxicating blend of steel drums, acoustic guitar, cabaret piano, and sexy alto sax punctuations. In repose, Kenny Chesney has found a most compelling voice and delivers an album that will endure long beyond the life of any radio hits.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Conventional wisdom dictates that the Caribbean Islands are where you go to relax, not work, but not for Kenny Chesney. The Tennessee native found his muse on the islands, and it changed his life and work. He started his career as a good, if unremarkable, neo-traditionalist singer, but he slowly built his own identity as a singer and songwriter, largely due to the time he spent in the islands, a love that he celebrated in his music and interviews. Not since Jimmy Buffett has a musician been so thoroughly identified with the life of a beach bum, but there is a big difference between the two. Buffett happily creates a soundtrack to a never-ending party, coasting a combination of good times and easy grooves and while Chesney certainly does indulge in this ingratiatingly lazy vibe, he also finds the islands as a place for introspection, and nowhere is that more evident than on his eighth album, 2005's Be as You Are (Songs from an Old Blue Chair). This is the companion piece to the breezy, bright modern country of 2004's When the Sun Goes Down, a relaxed, low-key collection of ballads and easy-rolling pop tunes that strikes precisely the right contemplative note, as if it were designed to be played during a picturesque ocean sunset. Which isn't to say that Be as You Are is a confessional album, or even a collection of overly introspective songs. There are autobiographical details threaded throughout the record, particularly on the opener, "Old Blue Chair," but the songs are open-ended, so listeners can identify with the narrator, or they're nice, mellow party tunes like "Key Lime Pie" or slow dance numbers like "Magic." It's a quiet record, but hardly an album that features Chesney alone with his guitar. Be as You Are is as polished and professional as When the Sun Goes Down, yet it's designed for quiet afternoons, not parties on the weekend. To Chesney's credit, he's as appealing on this set of relaxed tunes as he was on its gleaming, ultramodern predecessor, and taken together, they are strong proof that he's one of best singers and songwriters working in contemporary country music in the mid-2000s.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/25/2005
Label:
Bna Entertainment
UPC:
0828766153026
catalogNumber:
61530

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Kenny Chesney   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
John Jorgenson   Electric Guitar
Eric Darken   Percussion
Pat Buchanan   Harmonica,Electric Guitar
Buddy Cannon   Background Vocals
J.T. Corenflos   Electric Guitar,Gut String Guitar,Guitar (Nylon String)
Chad Cromwell   Drums
Robert Greenidge   Steel Drums
Tim Hensley   Background Vocals
John Hobbs   Piano,Keyboards,Hammond Organ,Hammond B3
Jim Hoke   Tenor Saxophone,Penny Whistle
Jim Horn   Tenor Saxophone
Paul Leim   Percussion,Drums,Shaker
B. James Lowry   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Steel Guitar,Guitar (Nylon String)
Liana Manis   Background Vocals
Randy McCormick   Piano,Keyboards,Hammond Organ,Wurlitzer,Hammond B3
Larry Paxton   Bass,Electric Bass,Bass Guitar,Background Vocals,Fretless Bass Guitar
Tom Roady   Percussion,Tambourine
Tommy White   Dobro
John Willis   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Gut String Guitar,Guitar (Nylon String)
Quentin Ware   Trumpet
Steve Herman   Trumpet
Wyatt Beard   Background Vocals
Mat Britain   Steel Drums
Murray Cannon   Background Vocals
David Briggs   Piano,Keyboards,Hammond Organ
Amy Jo Stelzer   Vocals

Technical Credits

Bill Anderson   Composer
Skip Ewing   Composer
Derek Bason   Engineer
Buddy Cannon   Composer,Producer,Audio Production
Kenny Chesney   Composer,Producer,Liner Notes,Audio Production
Dean Dillon   Composer
Billy Sherrill   Engineer
Holly Gleason   Publicity
Tony Castle   Engineer
Scotty Emerick   Composer
Dan Tucker   Composer
Phil Vassar   Composer
Dale Morris   Management
Katherine Stratton   Art Direction
Tim Holt   Composer
Clayton Mitchell   Composer
Tommy Figlio   Engineer
Clint Higham   Management
Amy Jo Stelzer   Introduction
Mark Tamburino   Composer,Introduction

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Be as You Are 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Jonathan1989 More than 1 year ago
"Be As You Are: Songs From An Old Blue Chair" is one of Kenny Chesney's wonderful album that is recorded at the beach in Key Largo. His voice is so, so, sssooooooo smooth.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Whatever happened to Kenny Chesney a few years ago, it has made him a fantastic music artist! This is by far the best of his yet. I was never really thrilled with his earlier stuff, but around 2000 he started doing some great work and his music really went through a metamorphisis just as he did. I love the island feel to his music and have always been a big Jimmy Buffett fan, so it is no surprise that I would love this too I guess. Please, Kenny, keep it up!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have done this one once all ready but i just had to do this one againe i just love all thes songs on this cd like the song key lime pie i have never had it but in this song we get a littel taste of it we all have your bad days and when you do you want something to put you in a good mood this is a good cd choice and it is a good cd to relax to these breze songs take us a way from here and take us down to the islands to not worrie about any thing but on how we all want to live our life at the beach.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you want an albumn with Kenny's "country roots" this isn't it. But keep in mind that most of Kenny's hits are written by professional songwriters. These are true stories told by Kenny and they tend to take you to a place far from Nashville or Margaritaville. I've been fortunate enough to have sat in the old blue chairs at the Soggy Dollar, joined Ivan himself for a Thursday night cookout and pulled a dinghy up to the dock at Foxy's. Jost Van Dyke is another world and Kenny tries to take you there.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Every album Kenny puts out is better than the last and this is no exception! I love the islands too although I've only been down there once. :) "I wish I was there tonight." "Be as you are" is my new mantra!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just love this newest cd by the entertanier of the year the one the only KENNY CHESNEY.The songs on this cd are so nice and relaxing you can just pop it in your cd player and from the first song to the last you are taken away to the islands you must buy this cd. joanna.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As gratifying as it is to hear Chesney strip away the Nashville gloss of his earlier albums, it will take listeners with a high threshold for cynicism to enjoy this adulatory billet doux. The odes to joy grow tiresome by mid-album, and the singular focus takes on the myopia of a religious awakening. One might be tempted to think that Chesney's adopting Jimmy Buffet's party life, but in reality he's more interested in swinging blissfully in a hammock. And while this contentedness is pleasant for a song or two, the happy-go-lucky beach bum's life lacks the drama needed to fuel lastingly compelling stories. ¶ The gentle production and light melodies are a nice turn, showing Chesney to be a gifted singer in addition to the star he's already proved himself to be. Buffet's fans are likely to find this hasn't enough grit or emotional depth to pique their interest, and Chesney's fans are going to be split among those who truly enjoy this breezy turn and those who wonder what happened to the singer's country roots. The rest of us will sip a few songs and then move on to something more substantial. ¶ 3-1/2 stars, if allowed fractional ratings.
Guest More than 1 year ago
So I ran to the store as soon as Midterms were over to buy this CD. Of course I love it, but most of the songs were slow, and I prefer the faster, more upbeat ones. However, I still LOVE Kenny and the rest of his CD's!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
For anyone who never feels as happy as they do when their feet are in the sand...for those of us who live for the smell of the ocean when they step off the plane. This CD will get me through in between vacations and keep me dreaming of the day that I can make my life a permanent vacation. I've enjoyed Kenny's music since he first broke out, but I've never consistently loved every song on a CD like I do this one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
You can't go wrong with a Kenny Chesney album and this latest one is no exception! Heartfelt, mellow tunes and lyrics are very relaxing. Close your eyes and you'll believe you're in the islands. It's great!
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