(Curb Records, 1997)
by Sandra L. Toney
Tim McGraw's latest release, "Everywhere," actually lives up to its unusual title. After listening to McGraw's first album since marrying country star, Faith Hill, you get the feeling he's been just about "everywhere" and finally comes back here, to this album, to settle down.
I haven't always been a Tim McGraw fan, mainly because of the multiple songs from the past that he insisted on using his "whiny" voice, but this newest release has found a more mature, and definitely LESS whiny, Tim McGraw, which is fine with me.
Of course, the song that is gaining the most attention on this album is the number one single that McGraw sings with wife, Faith Hill, entitled "It's Your Love," which seems almost to be the theme song for their surprise romance and quick marriage. Hill and McGraw not only make a cute husband/wife team, but also create quite a singing union who surely will win some of this year's country music awards.
As always, McGraw mixes ballads with just the right amount of upbeat songs to give his album the perfect balance. Besides his ballad with Hill, other notable singles include the sure-to-be-a-hit "I Do But I Don't," the sad story of a boy who was never popular with the other kids, "One of These Days," and the title track, "Everywhere."
Besides the superb duet with Faith Hill, my other favorites on "Everywhere" include the opening single, "Where the Green Grass Grows," which is a pick-me-up, you-gotta-love-this-life style of song. Who could be down in the dumps after hearing these lyrics as the chorus, "I'm gonna live where the green grass grows/Watch my corn pop up in rows/Every night be tucked in close to you/Raise are kids where the good Lord's best/Point our rocking chairs towards the west/and plant our dreams where the peaceful river flows/Where the green grass grows . . ."
Other songs that you won't be able to forget include "For A Little While," and "Hard on the Ticker." And, although I hate to predict which singles could become popular radio hits, I think the dynamic "Ain't That The Way It Always Ends?" has great possibilities to climb up the country charts (if given the chance).
As I pointed out earlier, this release finds Tim McGraw older, wiser, more mature, and definitely a better singer than his earlier albums. Although he's not a songwriter himself, he has a special gift at picking out songs that are perfect for him and his unusual style of country music. This new, improved Tim McGraw is a must-have for all country music fans, whether you liked his earlier hits or not. I predict Tim McGraw is only going to get better and better . . . here and EVERYWHERE!
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