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Waking Up Laughing

Waking Up Laughing

3.8 5
by Martina McBride

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In a career marked by more than one country music milestone, Waking Up Laughing is Martina McBride's strongest album yet. Fully realized in all respects, it finds the artist not only singing like there's no tomorrow but also co-writing a few songs and producing the entire affair. Steering her own record, she didn't cut corners. Her studio band includes stellar


In a career marked by more than one country music milestone, Waking Up Laughing is Martina McBride's strongest album yet. Fully realized in all respects, it finds the artist not only singing like there's no tomorrow but also co-writing a few songs and producing the entire affair. Steering her own record, she didn't cut corners. Her studio band includes stellar players on the order of guitarists Dan Dugmore, Bryan Sutton, and Steve Gibson; keyboardists Steve Nathan and Double Trouble's Reese Wynans; steel picker Paul Franklin; fiddler Larry Franklin; and the formidable rhythm section of drummer Matt Chamberlain and bassist Glenn Worf. These simpatico players impressively walk the line dividing traditional country stylings from more rhythmically driving, contemporary mainstream approaches (check out the pulsating, razor-edged attack on the rebound anthem, "Everybody Does," complete with snarling electric guitars and robust B-3 fills complementing its triumphant, soaring chorus). The lead single, "Anyway," a McBride co-write with Warren brothers Brad and Brett, alternates tender verses with a roaring, power-ballad chorus. "For These Times" by Leslie Satcher uses a guitar and mandolin attack to establish a down-home atmosphere for its musings on the dire state of the world and closes on an inspirational note with a full-on gospel chorus. McBride ends an album rich in topicality with "Love Land," a piano-driven ballad about a couple's sustaining love after losing a newborn child. Suffice to say that the touching final verse exemplifies the optimism and strength of character that makes Martina McBride's music so compelling. She chooses life.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Martina McBride scored big with Timeless, her collection of classic country tunes in 2005. It was yet another feather in the singer's cap. McBride's reign near the top of country music's pantheon has been near constant. She's picky about the songs she chooses to sing, she works with sympathetic producers, and her voice is, well, timeless. She's got the Southern twang, but its timbre carries within it a vast scope of American music. Check "Anyway," the first single and video from 2007's Waking Up Laughing, and one of two tunes on the set McBride had a hand in writing (and she produced the set herself -- she's earned the right). It's subject is to pray regardless, take the action and leave the result in the hands of Divine Providence: "God is great, but sometimes life ain't good/When I pray it doesn't always turn out like I think it should/But I do it anyway/I do it anyway." It's anthem to the beauty of failure, the courage in tenacity, and a testament to the willingness to do the right thing no matter how it turns out. It's got a massive string section, a slow, pronounced piano. The guitars crash against the strings in the refrain and the entire thing nearly lifts off the ground. The only thing holding it steady is McBride's big contralto. This kind of drama is her stock-in-trade. Celine Dion has nothing on her. Song itself is where McBride's quest as an artist resides. In the opener, "If I Had Your Name," rocking guitars, fiddles, mandolins, and big bad drums underscore McBride's scathing indictment of another's character flaws: "If I had your name/I'd be changin' it by now." A popping bassline and twin lead guitars fill the middle with menace and rage. "Everybody Does" feels like a flip side for "Anyway," with the subject of failure in love. "Loveland" and "House of a Thousand Dreams" have less of that large, theater-sounding dynamic. They are more traditionally "country" songs, a term that in the 21st century can mean almost anything -- and yes, that's good: it simply stands for American music these days. Waking Up Laughing is another brick in Martina McBride's astonishingly consistent catalog. Her continual affirmation for Christian faith may alienate some but will no doubt register with many country fans. Any way you look at it, Waking Up Laughing is a winner.

Product Details

Release Date:


Album Credits

Performance Credits

Martina McBride   Primary Artist,Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Steve Gibson   Electric Guitar
David Angell   Violin
Robert Bailey   Background Vocals,Vocal Harmony
David Campbell   Conductor
Matt Chamberlain   Drums
J.T. Corenflos   Electric Guitar
David Davidson   Violin
Dan Dugmore   Dobro,Pedal Steel Guitar,Electric Guitar
Stuart Duncan   Fiddle,Mandolin
Connie Ellisor   Violin
Kim Fleming   Background Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Larry Franklin   Fiddle
Paul Franklin   Pedal Steel Guitar
Carl Gorodetzky   Violin
Jim Grosjean   Viola
Vicki Hampton   Background Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Dann Huff   Electric Guitar
Anthony LaMarchina   Cello
B. James Lowry   Acoustic Guitar
Brent Mason   Electric Guitar
Gordon Mote   Piano
Nashville String Machine   Strings,Track Performer
Steve Nathan   Synthesizer,Piano,Hammond Organ,Hammond B3
Pamela Sixfin   Violin
Alan Umstead   Violin
Catherine Umstead   Violin
Gary VanOsdale   Viola
Mary Kathryn Van Osdale   Violin
Biff Watson   Acoustic Guitar
Kristin Wilkinson   Viola
Glenn Worf   Bass
Paul Worley   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Reese Wynans   Hammond Organ,Hammond B3
Jonathan Yudkin   Mandolin,Strings
Tim Lauer   Synthesizer,Accordion,Pump Organ
Keith Urban   Guitar,Background Vocals,Soloist,Vocal Harmony
Bruce Wethey   Violin
Monisa Angell   Viola
Karen Winkelmann   Violin
Bryan Sutton   Acoustic Guitar,Mandolin
Wes Hightower   Vocal Harmony
Elisabeth K. Small   Violin
Brett Warren   Background Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Carole Rabinowitz-Neuen   Cello
Carolyn Dawn Johnson   Vocal Harmony
David Huff   Percussion
Sarighani Reist   Cello
Troy Johnson   Vocal Harmony
Jenifer Wrinkle   Vocal Harmony
Kirsten Cassel   Cello
Stefan Petrescu   Violin

Technical Credits

Martina McBride   Composer,Producer,Audio Production
David Campbell   String Arrangements
Bettie Ross   Orchestration
Schmitt   Engineer
Kristin Wilkinson   String Arrangements
Jonathan Yudkin   Composer,String Arrangements
Rick Jones   Contributor
Billy Montana   Composer
S. Wade Hunt   Art Direction
Chris Lindsey   Composer
Aimee Mayo   Composer
Steve McEwan   Composer
Leslie Satcher   Composer
Shirley Settles   Contributor
Brad Warren   Composer
Marvin Green   Composer
Elizabeth White   Contributor
Tammy Hyler   Composer
Jenai   Composer
Ilya Toshinsky   Composer
Rachel Proctor   Composer
John McBride   Engineer
Darlene Hill   Contributor
Hillary Lindsey   Composer
Renita Smith Crittendon   Contributor
Calvin Settles   Contributor
Ira Wayne Settles   Contributor
Odessa Settles   Contributor
Todd Suttles   Contributor
Judy Forde Blair   Liner Notes,Creative Producer
Jeremy Stover   Composer
Dan Demay   Composer
Fallon Settles   Contributor
Sara Settles   Contributor
Pierre Womble   Contributor
Rachel Thibodeau   Composer
Tom Douglas   Composer

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Waking Up Laughing 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love this album so much. Every song on here gets me in a different way. She is a true country singer. My favorite songs are: Love Land Beautiful Again and Anyway.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved here new cd and it was beter then i that is was going to be . If you have a girl or boy how like's martina mcbride i would really think about geting it for him or her.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have loved most of Martina's other albums, and I'm a huge fan of her songs that recognize social issues, but this album is nothing but a huge downer. The best song is track# 3 which features some great harmony with Keith Urban.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago