Impressive debut of country singer-songwriter Brett Eldredge. His name was unfamiliar to me, but when this album popped up on my Amazon "recommended for you" and I saw and heard his song "Raymond" on Youtube, I just had to buy this album. I'm sure glad I did! The 12 tracks, eleven of whom Brett co-wrote except for the title track, show a wide range of styles and are a showcase for his soulful, distinctive baritone. The songs all have different flavors, borrowing elements from soul and jazz with rock and mainstream pop added to a delightful mixture that will appeal to fans of many genres.
He starts off with the rocker "Tell Me Where To Park" (a perfect song for when you're out on a date and "got the chrome all shined up" and are driving her around). Another hit out of the ballpark is the power ballad "Bring You Back" and the beautiful homage to small town life "Signs", in which Brett is singing about his home town of Paris, Illinois. But it's the ballads that make up the core of this album. There's the heartbreak of missed opportunities in love of "Waited Too Long". Then there's the bluesy-type country ballad "One Mississippi" and of course "Raymond", which was inspired by Eldredge's own grandmother and her struggle with Alzheimer's and of course the last song of the CD, "Go On Without Me", a moving memoriam to someone who passed away because of cancer.
Before you think the balance of this record weights too much in at the gloomy side of the scale, most of the songs are bright, feel-good songs like "Gotta Get There" and "Beat Of The Music", both of which have more of a pop/rock sound to them, and of course there's the perfect song for a sunny summer day "Don't Ya" with the catchy chorus, a tune that will stay in your head.
All 12 tracks are great, but my personal favorites on this album are "Raymond", a song which really hit me emotionally as it reminded me of my own mother who also suffered from Alzheimer, and the songs "Waited Too Long" and the R&B-flavored "Don't Ya". Can't wait to find out how Brett will develop as a singer/songwriter in the future!