Tracy Byrd - Different
Album Review By: Cheryl Harvey Hill, Sr. Staff Journalist
"Byrd Watcher's" rejoice, with a baker's
dozen of top ten hits, five gold albums, and one double
platinum album to his credit, we've come to expect great
things from Tracy Byrd and he definitely lives up to our
expectations on his newest album. From start to finish Different
Things delivers a bevy of visual lyrics via dynamic,
boot scootin', heart tuggin' music; all dramatically
enhanced by Byrd's powerful vocal delivery.
Last year Byrd took charge of his own career and became
co-owner of his own label; Blind Mule Records. He
co-produced Different Things with his long-time
friend and writing partner Mike Geiger and he also had a
hand in writing on two of the songs; "She Was
Smart" and "Hot Night in the Country."
The title cut, "Different Things," is the
first track and the powerful lyrics, delivered in classic
country style, set the tone for the entire album. Byrd
says that this is one of the tracks that hit him really
hard; my guess is that there will be a lot of folks
echoing those same sentiments. But just when you are about
to drop a few tears in your beer because "What I want
and what I need / Have always been different things,"
Byrd shifts emotional gears with "The More I Feel
Like Rockin'." This musical, emotional roller coaster
continues throughout the album.
"A Cowboy and a Dancer" was one of my
favorite cuts on the album and Byrd says it "came
close" to being his. It is a great story song in
keeping with classic country but before you can even
recover from the pull you are feeling on your heart, an
up-tempo tune titled "The Biggest Thing in
Texas" starts to play. This cut is reminiscent of the
remarkable Bob Wills, Texas swing tunes and the song is a
terrific ode to the indisputable Texas pride. With
its contagious music and fun lyrics, this track is certain
to get everyone up on the dance floor.
"Just One Woman" is a beautiful ballad about
a man's one true love while "Saltwater Cowboy"
is a nonsensical ode to beach boy cowboys; polar opposites
in subject but both songs are equally compelling, well
written, and lyrically strong.
"Cheapest Motel" is traditional country at
its ultimate best. Everyone knows that cheating songs are
at the core of country music and this cut is a definite
tribute to tradition but I think "Before I Die"
just might be my favorite song on the album. It isn't just
the powerful lyrics that got my attention on this track;
it was the way Byrd moved through the song with so much
Byrd has always marched to the beat of a different
drummer. He is a successful entrepreneur with strong ties
to his family and his home state of Texas. He has had
ongoing success designing fishing tackle, launching his
own line of food products, hosting television shows and
even authoring a cookbook. Staying true to himself has
been the key to his success and, lucky for us this album
proves that staying true to himself means staying true to
the music. Byrd may sing about Different Things but
one thing that never changes is his exceptional baritone
voice and the quality of the songs he chooses to record.
Click on the CD cover to order yours!
1 Different Things
2 The More I Feel Like Rockin'
3 She Was Smart
4 A Cowboy and a Dancer
5 The Biggest Thing in Texas
6 Just One Woman
7 Saltwater Cowboy
8 Cheapest Motel
9 Better Places Than This
10 Before I Die
11 Hot Night in the Country
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