Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Country, Pop, Rock
Anyone with a voice and heart as soulful as Patty Loveless is incapable of making a bad record. Her low-down vocals on her own "You Don't Get No More" are bound to turn some so-called blues singers green with envy, and if ... more »
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Anyone with a voice and heart as soulful as Patty Loveless is incapable of making a bad record. Her low-down vocals on her own "You Don't Get No More" are bound to turn some so-called blues singers green with envy, and if you don't get a little misty behind her rendition of Matraca Berg's "My Heart Will Never Break This Way Again," check your pulse. Berg's ballad is a prime example of how Nashville at its best continues to turn out excellent new twists on old themes. Unfortunately many of the tunes on Strong Heart sound more like old twists on old themes. In a town that boasts a slew of brilliant songwriters--Buddy and Julie Miller, Steve Earle, and Rodney Crowell to name a few--it is hard to believe that these are the best tunes Loveless and producer Emory Gordy could find. Strong Heart is by no means a bad record, but after a three-year wait both Loveless and her fans deserve a better one. --Michael Ross
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Patty gives us another winner!
matthew76 | PA | 08/31/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Patty's latest album, Strong Heart, does not quite rank with her best albums Only What I Feel and When Fallen Angels Fly, but it does compete with all her other albums. There is no country fluff like Faith Hill's "This Kiss" on here. Sure, it may be her least traditional album, but there's always something offered for the listener. The song "You're So Cool" has harmonica on it and a melody that is as cool as the theme. Clever lyrics have an adult woman thinking the one she loves is as cool as "Dylan back in '69." The song "You Don't Get No More" is one of her edgier songs yet, as is "The Key Of Love," but the guitars remind more of good rock and blues than pop. "That's The Kind Of Mood I'm In" has a chorus so uplifting that you won't mind that its theme has been done many times before. "Strong Heart" is a poppy ballad that uses tastefully lush arrangements, and it doesn't lose Patty's introspection. "My Heart Will Never Break Again" is a traditional ballad with good fiddle, and the arrangements are more in the feel of her great songs "Nothing But The Wheel" and "You Don't Even Know Who I Am" than any other song on here. The lyrics in "My Heart Will Never Break Again" are confessed from the soul. The ballad "Thirsty" with its tinge of bluegrass lets Patty's Appalachian twang wail to its fullest. It's definitely a highlight. The ballads "She Never Stopped Loving Him" and "Pieces On The Ground" are also very moving, despite kind of generic ballad arrangements on "She Never Stopped Loving Him." I definitely advise buying this album from one of the most genuine country singers around. Patty Loveless keeps the traditional backbone of country alive in a modern setting."
Not worth 3 years of waiting
Rob Laffin | Ellsworth, ME USA | 09/12/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"As a musician and a diehard Patty Loveless fan, it is hard to understand how this collection of mostly forgettable, mediocre "B" sides is the best she and Emory could come up with after 3 years. Patty's voice is straight from the heart, but it seems thin and strained against the overinstrumentalization on a number of these songs. "Thirsty" with Travis Tritt is excellent: two mega talents with spare, acoutic backing to show them off. This one has the most musical honesty of any on the album. The others sounds as if they were written by market researchers, as if a decision had been made by Patty's handlers to lower her previously impeccable standards to pander to an increasingly juvenile and undiscriminating radio audience. Why do this? It didn't work before, why are they still trying? I can't help but think, if Patty had the courage and wisdom (or were simply allowed by her handlers) to sing what she loves, she could transcend genre and achieve the legendary status of an Emmylou Harris. At this point in her life, you'd think that's what she would want, and she certainly deserves it. Anybody who knows music acknowledges she is absolutely one of the finest talents in country music. ("Tear Stained Letter" got a very warm reception in alternative radio; I never understood why it wasn't released on country radio also.) It's such a shame to see her trying to play the POP game. I knew we were in trouble when the album lead off with the bubble gum "You're so cool," whose lyrics are not clever, but rather are insipid, as is the music. It's okay to just have fun, but it still ought to be good music, and this isn't. Also, Patty knows she is counted on to deliver a fabulous rocker from time to time, and hers have been the BEST. But all three attempts on this album are only good enough to dance to, they are not good enough to be on a Patty Loveless album. Simply put, Patty is the best of the best of the best, and this material, with one or two exceptions, is simply beneath her. I await the day when she breaks free and makes the traffic-stopping music she's capable of. I have every one of her albums and play them all at least 5 times a year. I love her voice, her soul, her humility, her down-to-earthness, her spiritual maturity, and I wish her the very best. I also respect Emory's arrangements and production on all the past albums, which are wisely restrained and showcase her awesome voice. But this album is simply a mistake. It may or may not be commercially successful, but musically it's pretty much fluff. I agree with the AMAZON reviewer that it would be interesting to hear Patty sing some Steve Earle songs (I always thought "My Old Friend the Blues" would be a knockout if Patty sang it), and there are other excellent songwriters around. So what happened?"
Jake Z | Canada | 02/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a really underrated album from Patty Loveless, and it has some of her best material. There was a time, back between 1994-1996 where Patty Loveless was on top of country music, and was winning all sorts of accolades. When she released her 1997 album LONG STRETCH OF LONESOME, it failed to yield a top 10 hit and it seemed country radio lost interest after that. Which is a shame, because they missed the boat on this album, and ones that would follow this one that were truly exceptional.This album gets a lot of criticism because it is apparantely "too pop". Not at all. The title track, and a few other songs, have pop sounding arrangements, but the heart of it is still country. You look at artists like Shania Twain, and you will see this is definately country in comparison to Shania!The album opens with the Matraca Berg written "You're So Cool", which would have been a great single. It has a nice sing a long quality to it. "The Last Thing On My Mind", written by Rebecca Lynn Howard, is a great ballad that was the second single from the album. One of my favorites is "My Heart Will Never Break This Way Again", an excellent country ballad that teams Loveless up with Trisha Yearwood and Claire Lynch. Great song!The first single from the album was "That's The Kind Of Moon I'm In", it should have been a bigger hit but didn't really catch on with country radio. "Thirsty" is a nice duet with Travis Tritt. The title track is another favorite, as is the wonderful ballad "She Never Stopped Loving Him", which is the show stopping song here I believe. So much passion and it's a sad story, but it's great.Overall, her 2000 album STRONG HEART may not have been as popular as past albums, but don't pass on it, it's a great album with some really good songs that country radio should have heard!"