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Like Red on a Rose

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Barnes & Noble - David McGee
The last thing you expect to hear at the start of an Alan Jackson album is the first thing you hear at the start of Like Red on a Rose: a drum roll, a gut-string guitar, and an acoustic piano playing a slinky pop-jazz riff. Thus does Alison Krauss introduce herself as AJ's producer, by taking him to a place suggested on some of his country ballads (listen hard to "Anywhere on Earth You Are," and you might even hear a smidgen of melody from his beautiful Christmas song, "Let It Be Christmas"). But this is a full-blown dreamscape of lilting rhythm, silky background vocals, and shimmering choruses more appropriate for a saloon at dawn than a honky-tonk after midnight. Track...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
The last thing you expect to hear at the start of an Alan Jackson album is the first thing you hear at the start of Like Red on a Rose: a drum roll, a gut-string guitar, and an acoustic piano playing a slinky pop-jazz riff. Thus does Alison Krauss introduce herself as AJ's producer, by taking him to a place suggested on some of his country ballads (listen hard to "Anywhere on Earth You Are," and you might even hear a smidgen of melody from his beautiful Christmas song, "Let It Be Christmas"). But this is a full-blown dreamscape of lilting rhythm, silky background vocals, and shimmering choruses more appropriate for a saloon at dawn than a honky-tonk after midnight. Track 2, "Good Imitation of the Blues," gets alternately funky and rocky behind fuzzed-out guitar, popping bass, a quietly ascending string section, and bluesy piano, ultimately taking flight into surging rock ballad territory. This is a new kind of AJ album, referencing pop, rock, and jazz idioms more so than country, and full of dense, atmospheric arrangements in sharp contrast to Jackson's cool, collected vocals. The songs are centered on aspects of love, and Krauss smartly ropes in a writer she's long and properly championed, Robert Lee Castleman, including his elegant invocation of new love in the title song. Krauss joins the band, along with some of her Union Station mates, but the electrifying guitarist Kenny Vaughn steals the show with solos full of fire, fury, and economy of purpose. Meeting Krauss's challenge head-on, Jackson digs deep and emerges a big winner.
All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Upon first glance, Alan Jackson's devout album of Christian spirituals, Precious Memories, seemed like a worthy but curious detour, a step off the hard country path for the best of all modern honky tonk singers, and that the next time around he would be back in familiar territory; after all, he made a career out of being reliable. As it turned out, that studiously quiet collection of traditional gospel tunes kicked off a particularly adventurous 2006 for Jackson, since he followed it up seven months later with Like Red on a Rose, a record quite unlike any other he's made. This is a smoky, intimate record; it's romantic, to be sure, but not seductive -- instead, it's the sound of longtime love, the sound of happiness. Which is hardly the same thing as a bright, sunny record, since Like Red on a Rose is anything but that. This is a record designed for late-night listening, either with the one you love or as you're lost in reflection on your own. In a sense, it's a country variation on Frank Sinatra's classic late-night saloon records. Jackson is certainly not as haunted as Frank was on In the Wee Small Hours -- if anything, he's the opposite, pleased with where he's at in life -- but it has the same sense of introspection, and Like Red on a Rose is also at its heart an interpretive work. There is only one Jackson original here, a revival of his 1998 tune "A Woman's Love." The other 12 songs are all penned by other writers, largely songs that aren't well known to the general public only the closer of Leon Russell's "Bluebird" can qualify as a popular classic. There are plenty of songs about love, but also songs about growing older, having and enjoying a family, yet still sometimes feeling restless. So, it's every bit the concept album that one of Sinatra's albums is, and in its own way, Like Red on a Rose is just as effective, thanks to Jackson's supple singing; he's always rightly been acknowledged as one of the great singers in country music, but he's never had a chance to show such a range as he does here. Give some credit to producer Alison Krauss, whom Jackson originally approached with the idea of recording a bluegrass record. Krauss helped steer Alan in this direction, and he ran with it, winding up with a record that's every bit as surprising as Precious Memories, yet greater. On that record, it was possible to hear Jackson work at achieving his goal. Here, he's effortless, and the result is an uncommonly rich and moving album. If 2006 has been this eventful, who knows where Jackson will go in 2007?
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/26/2006
  • Label: Arista
  • UPC: 828768817223
  • Catalog Number: 88172

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Alan Jackson Primary Artist
Jerry Douglas Dobro, Lap Steel Guitar
Alison Krauss Strings
Ron Block Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar
Jim Cox fender rhodes, Hammond B3
Viktor Krauss Electric Bass, Acoustic Bass
Technical Credits
Stephen Foster Composer
Jimmy Holiday Composer
Leon Russell Composer
Tim Krekel Composer
Bill LaBounty Composer
Patrick Brayer Composer
Sidney Cox Composer
Alan Jackson Composer
Danny O'Keefe Composer
Herb Pedersen Composer
John Pennell Composer
Eddie Reeves Composer
Roy Freeland Composer
Robert Lee Castleman Composer
Melanie Castleman Composer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Alan Jackson at his best!

    Female Alan Jackson fans should love this CD--it's extremely romantic and sexy! I've played it over and over since buying it. He's never sounded better to me. Alison Krauss should be very proud.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Not Typical Alan Jackson

    I really enjoy Alan Jackson but this far from typical Alan Jackson.I am very disappointed in it and hope he will return to his old type of music.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great CD

    I really love the music arrangements on this CD and Alan Jackson is sounding great.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    steps outside the box

    I loved the different than usual musical styling. It is beautiful. It touches your soul.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews