Not bad, but it could've been better
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I'm going to cut right to the chase here. Some covers on this album are wonderful, while others leave a lot to be desired.
Let's face it: While Alabama is one of the greatest bands in the history of country music, and certainly one of my favorite country groups, they, DID NOT DO JUSTICE TO THE SONG THEY COVERED. (Need I tell you what song they covered?) John Mattick (piano) butchered the piano part, and Mark Herndon, (drums) did not use cymbals where he needed to. (If you don't believe me, go back and listen to the chorus). Not to mention that they completely changed the second verse. ("In Birmingham, they play some football..." Did they think no one would notice?) Over all, that cover ain't worth the time it takes to listen to it.
Travis Tritt's version of "Don't ask me no Questions" is just plain awesome. Come to think of it, it might even be better than the original.
Confederate Railroad was good, although they probably would've sounded better doing one of the more upbeat Skynyrd songs.
Sammy Kershaw does a really nice job with his version of "I know a little". The piano solo, while obviously different, still sounds really cool.
Hank Jr did an awesome job with "Tuesday's Gone." The only thing I'm not too fond of about his version is that, like Alabama did on "Sweet Home Alabama", he completely changed the words around. However, UNLIKE ALABAMA, Hank still managed to make his cut sound good. Judging from Hank's past cover songs, it seems that he has that ability.
The Mavericks were pretty cool, but they should not have done "Call me the Breeze". I say that simply because "CALL ME THE BREEZE" IS NOT A SKYNYRD SONG. Believe it or not, "Call me the Breeze" was origianlly recorded in 1971 (I think) by a fellow named Jean Jacques Cale, who also wrote the song. Also, as with some of the other artists on this album, they changed around the lyrics. Please, if you're going to cover a song, include all of the original lyrics in their original order, unless your Hank Jr. I will admit, though, giving that song a forties style swing sound was a pretty cool and original idea. Kudos to them for that.
Steve Earle did a wonderful job on "What's your Name?"
The Charlie Daniels Band's version of "One More Time" is pretty decent, although I personally would've had them cover "Gimme Three Steps" because that song, in my opinion, is the best Skynyrd song of all time, (nothing personal to the "Freebird" freaks; that's an awesome song, too) and because I think the CDB would've done a better job with that song. (Couldn't you just hear Charlie Daniels singing the words and jammin' an awesome fiddle solo on "Gimme Three Steps"?) That song needs a fiddle solo.
McBride and the Ride rocked out on "Saturday Night Special". I do have one question, though. Is Terry McBride related to Martina McBride?
And, last but not least, we have Wynona. Why do record companies seem to think that tribute albums like this always need to have at least one female singer on them? So far, it's been like that with every tribute album I've bought. (I have a lot of tribute albums, and not one of them is a trubute to a female artist, yet it always seems to be the case that no matter what tribute album I buy, there's always a female artist singing one of the songs.) Are they trying to be politically correct? Look, I'm going to say the same thing about Wynona's version of Freebird that I've said before: if the song was written with a male lead vocal part in mind, as "Freebird" obviously was, than get another guy to sing it, and don't change the words around so that a female can sing it. When you change the words around so a female can sing the vocal part, the song just ain't the same, and there's no way around that.