Jake Owen

The 51st Annual Grammy Awards: Keeping It Country (Staff Favorites)

February 6, 2009 // 6 Comments

The second article in our Grammy Awards series, our personal favorites in the country categories at this year’s ceremony. Best Country Album Jamey Johnson, That Lonesome Song Patty Loveless, Sleepless Nights  (Blake, Leeann) George Strait, Troubadour Randy Travis, Around the Bend Trisha Yearwood, Heaven, Heartache and the Power of Love  (Dan, Kevin, Lynn) Blake: Strait’s collection is a mixed bag of middlebrow art with the occasional glimpse at his right-as-rain Texas style. Excepting Troubadour, these discs are highwater marks for the genre. Johnson and Loveless finished one-two on my 2008 list, but I’ll root for Loveless to win a long-awaited solo Grammy. Dan: I actually think Johnson made the best album, but Yearwood’s is my second-favorite, and she’s long overdue. Kevin: It’s a strong field overall, but Yearwood’s album is the most cohesive. She’s the greatest female album artist since Emmylou Harris, yet she’s never won an album award. It’s Read More

The 51st Annual Grammy Awards: Keeping It Country (Staff Predictions)

February 6, 2009 // 5 Comments

In a nod towards diversity, the General Field nominees for the 51st annual Grammy Awards include a shepherd’s pie of musical genres, with Brit soul ingenues (Adele, Duffy) against American pop trios (Jonas Bros., Lady A), Brit pop bands (Coldplay, Radiohead) against American rappers (Ne-Yo, Lil’ Wayne), all with a Brit rock legend (Robert Plant) lording over them. While it’s hard to argue the breadth of recent nominees in these categories, their depth is always up for discussion (see: Herbie Hancock, 2008 Album of the Year; Ray Charles, 2005 Record of the Year). The country field is filled with critical faves. George Strait enjoys the strongest across-the-board success in his estimable career, newcomer Jamey Johnson is lauded for his neo-outlaw soul, and Randy Travis, Patty Loveless and Trisha Yearwood continue Grammy’s trend of nominating veterans alongside newer artists. The staff of Country Universe have chosen their personal favorites and predictions for this year’s Grammy Read More

Discussion: Vote for Your CMA Picks

November 4, 2008 // 20 Comments

Seems appropriate for Election Day.  Vote for your favorites and share your thoughts in the comments.  Be sure to click “more” so you can see all of the categories. [poll id=”2″] [poll id=”3″] [poll id=”4″]

Jake Owen, “Don’t Think I Can’t Love You”

August 17, 2008 // 5 Comments

Jake Owen has a powerful voice, and he can pull off a traditional country wail better than most of his fellow newcomers.    On his new single, that ability takes a backseat, as he opts for blue-eyed country soul instead. The result is pleasant to the ears, though a slightly faster pace would make the entire proceedings more interesting.   By delivering the chorus with consistent rather than escalating intensity, the record doesn’t build to a satisfying conclusion.   Once you’ve heard the first verse and chorus, you’ve heard it all. Grade: B- Listen: Don’t Think I Can’t Love You

Jake Owen, “Something About a Woman”

July 17, 2007 // 6 Comments

Jake Owen, “Something About a Woman” A good opening verse leads to a chorus that confesses, “There’s something about a woman, some kind of sweet little something that I may never understand.” Which reveals that there’s not really a wizard behind the songwriting curtain here. A better song would capture what the something is. A lazy song with an equally lazy performance to go with it. Meh. Grade: C- Listen: Something About a Woman Buy: Something About a Woman

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