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©2008 Independently released
Review by Lucky Boyd
I could write for hours about the opening cut itself, titled “I Washed My Hands In Muddy Water” by it’s credited author, Joe Babcock. Over the years it has become “Muddy Water” and has been recorded by more than a dozen superstars. Now it has been recorded by Jerry Audley and an argument is easily made that this may be the best recording since Stonewall Jackson’s 1965 version. This cut has a Texas attitude that the song has been seeking for almost half a century. Audley hit number one on the Texas chart with “Lucky Me, Lonely You” and he could do it again with a single release of “Muddy Water.” One of the indicators that Audley is on his way to the top is the unique quality of his voice. When you listen, try to pin point exactly who he sounds like. You can’t. Audley’s voice is just slightly different than all the other stars making the airwaves today. That’s going to be a huge asset in his career. Oh sure, he sounds almost like this one or that one, but after hearing him for a while, it becomes easy to recognize Audley as soon as you hear him. This is a characteristic of superstars. Audley writes or co-writes three of the dozen cuts on this faithfully country album. This album has all the attributes of a great debut offering and leaves us poised to receive the next album with open arms. Audley covers the Clark/White clever tongue-in-cheek novelty “If It Ain’t One Thing” cementing one of Jerry’s catch phrases, “If it ain’t one thing, it’s your mother.” The Tommy Barnes cover, “I Just Want To Hold You,” will become an anthem for young love when discovered by the masses. It will easily become a ‘most dedicated’ song on Texas radio if given the chance. Audley’s rise to the top of the charts came on the back of “Lucky Me, Lonely You,” originally recorded by Brooks and Dunn. The song would have been served well by fellow Texan, Buck Owens if he had ever recorded it. Jerry Audley has an underlying theme in this album that is subtle in nature, but powerful once recognized. Almost every cut is traditional in delivery, but arranged with every perceptible modern technological asset available. The performances are tight, perfectly mixed and mastered, and Audley’s vocals are spot on. Co-produced by Audley and Paul Osborn, you’ll want to remember this album when award season comes around. This disc is just the beginning for Jerry Audley. It takes 100 out of 100 things to happen for an artist to reach the pinnacle of success in this business. Most performers rarely get 50 and there are superstars in country music who have only hit 90 out of 100. Jerry Audley is sitting squarely on 95 out of 100 and is just around the corner from those last few pieces of the puzzle. Once you get this album and convince all your friends to buy it as well, Audley will be approaching 96. Some luck, some persistence, some help, and some timing will bring in the last four and Jerry Audley will be a national talent. This is clearly one of the best albums of 2008. Buy it today and be part of the process for this deserving Texan.
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