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Sunny Sweeney – Heartbreaker’s Hall of Fame 
Album review by Amy Ross, CSO Staff Journalist

You know that feeling you get when you go to a country club and your standing in line waiting for your turn to show your ID and get inside. Then it happens, the DJ inside puts on a song and all of the sudden there is an urgency to get in the doors because you have to dance to the song playing. You may not even know who it is singing but the music moves you to the center of your being. Well, Sunny Sweeney‘s album, Heartbreakers Hall of Fame has twelve songs that will do just that and more.

Sweeney starts off this album with “Refresh My Memory” and it goes without saying if you like old country, and I mean the classics, you will love Sweeney. When I looked at the pictures on her album sleeve I wasn’t expecting this sound. A sweet face with a look today’s country fans will fall for, but with a sound that will impress Granddad. As the first track ends, it isn’t difficult to imagine this beautiful young woman on stage winning the hearts of everyone in the audience and the second cut starts off with a bang. Good golly, Sweeney will rattle the walls with “East Texas Pines.” This song will easily go from your local rodeo to a long haul trucker’s radio and is certain to please everyone in between.

By the third title on this album I am completely convinced the young Ms. Sweeney was born in the wrong era. “Next Big Nothing" has all the positive earmarks and twang of a classic country song. If you like Hank Williams Sr. and Jimmy Rogers you are sure to love Sweeney. She slows the pace down in “Lavender Blue,” a pleasing duet with Jim Lauderdale about love lost and the blues of a broken heart.

Sweeney truly has a sound I haven’t heard in a long time and believe me when I say it’s been a long time coming. I got caught up on “Here Lately“, with the fun beat and a sound only Sweeney has. I had to listen to it a few times before I could move on to the title cut. In “Heartbreaker’s Hall of Fame” Sweeney sings about the trials and tribulations along the road you take with each and every heartbreak.

“Mama’s Opry” is a song about someone who grows up with a Mama that dreams of singing at the Grand Ol’ Opry. Their Mama is always singing around the house; even while hanging laundry out to dry and doing other household chores. The story this song tells is one that of many of us, who live out our dreams singing in our own living room or local karaoke bar, will identify with.

“If I Could" literally gave me chill bumps. If there are any DJ’s reading this review I challenge you to play this song one time, that’s all you will need and the dance floor will be so full of swing dancers and those who didn’t fit on the dance floor will be singing along to the chorus.

Sweeney’s vocal range is very broad, from the high notes to the low heartwarming ones, and she easily gets your attention with “16th Avenue“. I can’t say she saves the best for last because I haven’t picked a favorite yet.

All in all, I highly recommend Heartbreaker’s Hall of Fame and it is a must have for any classic country fan.

Click the cover to order this CD.

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