Be Here

Be Here

4.7 7
by Keith Urban
     
 

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Coming off the double-platinum success of 2002's Golden Road, Aussie country rocker Keith Urban builds on a winning formula with Be Here, one of the year's strongest mainstream offerings. Well-turned original songs, a couple of impressive covers, tight band work, expressive singing, and, of course, some exemplary guitarSee more details below

Overview

Coming off the double-platinum success of 2002's Golden Road, Aussie country rocker Keith Urban builds on a winning formula with Be Here, one of the year's strongest mainstream offerings. Well-turned original songs, a couple of impressive covers, tight band work, expressive singing, and, of course, some exemplary guitar pickin' on Urban's part are the essential components here, and when they all mesh it's a beautiful thing. They do just that on "You're My Better Half," a sizzling, country-tinged rocker that finds Urban not only singing the praises of his beloved but stepping out with a joyous, soaring guitar solo. In a buoyant arrangement suited to a song titled "I Could Fly," Urban exults in the strengthening power of true love, backed by a funky little herky-jerky groove and a wailing slide guitar solo that jets toward the stratosphere. He conjures a seductive atmosphere, via twangy guitar playing and a heartfelt vocal, on a cover of Rodney Crowell's brilliant love song "Making Memories of Us" (hear the original version on the Notorious Cherry Bombs' debut). Heartbreak gets more than a fair hearing too, on Urban's wrenching, intimate piano ballad "Tonight I Wanna Cry," on which he touches some still-raw nerves in his account of a relationship's demise, his tear-stained vocal sounding close to the bone. He more than does justice to Elton John and Bernie Taupin's "Country Comfort" -- one of the strongest songs in EJ's early canon -- on which his boisterous vocal is set against swirling pedal steel lines and snarling guitar punctuations. Platinum shortage in America? Blame Keith Urban. He's gonna be stockpiling it soon.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Keith Urban has been a consistent presence in the country charts since 2000, scoring eight consecutive entries as of the release of his third U.S. solo album, Be Here (the eighth being this disc's leadoff track, "Days Go By"). And there's plenty more where that came from. Unlike most other country artists, Urban doesn't restrict his albums to ten selections from the Nashville songwriting establishment. This one contains 13 songs at a generous 55-minute running time, and Urban's name is on nine of them as a co-writer. Thus, the collection can be viewed as more of a singer/songwriter effort than the usual Music City product. From that point of view, the album has a distinct storytelling arc, beginning with the carpe diem sentiments of "Days Go By" and continuing into a series of songs that celebrate life and love, notably Rodney Crowell's unabashedly romantic "Making Memories of Us," which finds Urban doing his best Crowell imitation. Suggestions of struggle begin to intrude as of "God's Been Good to Me," however -- and after seven songs, Urban abruptly changes the sound and the mood with a piano-and-strings weeper, "Tonight I Wanna Cry." "She's Gotta Be" picks up the pace, if not the mood, and Matraca Berg and Jim Collins' "Nobody Drinks Alone" brings the singer to a sodden rock bottom before he changes the subject by covering Elton John's "Country Comfort" and finally overcomes adversity in "Live to Love Another Day," then rewrites the album's opening song to look forward again on the album-closing "These Are the Days." The album-length story of optimism and perseverance in the face of romantic turmoil and alcoholic temptation is told musically with Urban's usual collection of fast-picked string instruments, including electric and acoustic guitars, banjo, mandolin, and Dobro (the last played by Bruce Bouton). It's a muscular sound indebted at least as much to rock and bluegrass as to traditional country, but it supports his light, flexible tenor and his essentially upbeat message.

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Product Details

Release Date:
09/21/2004
Label:
Liberty
UPC:
0724357748926
catalogNumber:
77489
Rank:
5812

Tracks

  1. Days Go By
  2. Better Life
  3. Making Memories of Us
  4. God's Been Good to Me
  5. The Hard Way
  6. You're My Better Half
  7. I Could Fly
  8. Tonight I Wanna Cry
  9. She's Gotta Be
  10. Nobody Drinks Alone
  11. Country Comfort
  12. Live to Love Another Day
  13. These Are the Days

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Keith Urban   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Mandolin,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals,Hand Clapping,Slide Guitar,E-bow,Soloist,Guitar (12 String Acoustic),Vocal Harmony
Bruce Dukov   Violin
Eric Darken   Percussion
Charlie Bisharat   Violin
Bruce Bouton   Dobro,Steel Guitar
Paul Buckmaster   Conductor
Denyse Buffum   Viola
Paul Bushnell   Bass
Matt Chamberlain   Percussion,Drums
Larry Corbett   Cello
Armen Garabedian   Violin
Berj Garabedian   Violin
Endre Granat   Violin
Paula Hochhalter   Cello
Dann Huff   Mandolin,Electric Guitar,Guitar (12 String Acoustic)
Roland Kato   Viola
Peter Kent   Violin
Steven King   Accordion
Chris McHugh   Percussion,Drums
Steve Nathan   Piano
Jimmie Lee Sloas   Bass
Josefina Vergara   Violin
Evan Wilson   Viola
Jonathan Yudkin   Fiddle,Cello
Jimmy Nichols   Piano,Keyboards,Synthesizer Strings
Russell Terrell   Background Vocals
Suzie Katayama   Cello
Tim Akers   Organ,Piano,Accordion,Keyboards,Hammond Organ
Bob Peterson   Violin
Chris Thile   Mandolin
Natalie Leggett   Violin
Rudy Stein   Cello
Sara Parkins   Violin
Tom Bukovac   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Slide Guitar,wah wah guitar
Dan Huff   Mandolin
Dan Smith   Cello
Robert Matsuda   Violin
Steve Richards   Cello
Charles Stegeman   Violin
Rachel Stegeman   Violin
Daniel Smith   Cello
Matthew Funes   Viola

Technical Credits

Matraca Berg   Composer
Rodney Crowell   Composer
Elton John   Composer
Darrell Brown   Composer
Paul Buckmaster   Arranger,String Arrangements
Steve Churchyard   Engineer
Betsy Cook   Management
Mark Hagen   Engineer
Dann Huff   Producer
Richard Marx   Composer
Justin Niebank   Engineer
Monty Powell   Composer
Chris Rowe   Digital Editing
Bernie Taupin   Composer
Suzie Katayama   Orchestral Coordinator
John Shanks   Composer
Gordie Sampson   Composer
Keith Urban   Composer,Producer
Jim Collins   Composer
Rivers Rutherford   Composer
Brady Barnett   Engineer
Darin Murphy   Booking
Andy Ackland   Digital Editing
Adam Ayan   Mastering
Gary Borman   Management
Joanna Carter   Art Direction

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