In 2003, Tracy Lawrence scored a Top-5 smash hit with Paint Me A Birmingham. The song dealt with a man asking an artist to paint a picture of the life he dreamed of with his lost love. The song is quite appropriate for the way I appreciate this music. No, I don’t share the heartbroken subject’s situation. Far from it. I am legally blind and therefore I can’t see very well. When the music hits me just right, it paints pictures in my mind more vivid than my eyes could see through my thick glasses.
I grew up in the 1990’s. It was one of Country’s golden ages. Artists & bands like Garth Brooks, Randy Travis, Alan Jackson, Joe Diffie, Brooks & Dunn, Confederate Railroad, Wynonna, and others were tearing up the charts and were the soundtrack of my young life back then. If the Braves or Georgia Bulldogs weren’t playing, the music was in the background as I read, played video games, or just hung out. On the weekends I would lay in the dark listening to The Opry on WSM. If I couldn’t sleep, I’d listen to the Trucker shows that were full of the Country sound.
It was a special time. It was also more simple and I’d sure love to get back in a time machine and go back. While that is scientifically impossible, Tracy Lawrence has painted pictures in my mind that have done just the trick with his new album Headlights, Taillights, & Radios.
Back when I was growing up, Tracy was one of my favorites. He has a style and a way of singing that is unmistakably his. Whether it was uptempo toe tappers (“If The Good Die Young” or “”Renegades, Rebels, & Rogues”), or more thoughtful songs (“If the World Had A Front Porch” or “Time Marches On”), Tracy pulled them off exceptionally.
With his brand new album, Tracy Lawrence has pulled off quite a musical feat. He has put out an album of songs that almost all sound like they belong on contemporary Country radio, but he has done so without selling himself out (not that there is anything wrong with the modern sound…it’s just different). Songs like Black Top, Cloud of Dust, Good Girl, & Footprints On The Moon fit in quite nicely with Keith Urban, Kenny Chesney, and Jason Aldean, However if you listen very closely, you will hear pieces in the background that remind you of Tracy’s classic hits (if having Tracy’s unique voice singing the lyrics isn’t enough for you).
The song that really puts the album over the top is Cecil’s Palace. It is the exact opposite of every other song in the package. While the other songs fit on Country radio today, this one doesn’t. It’s a throwback to the early 1990’s. The song makes me want to get on a pair of boots, pour sawdust on the floor, and have a big party! However the lyrics fit completely with modern Country Radio. Tracy sings about a place that (in his words) is “A Truck stop, casino, strip club, bingo, hookah and sushi bar.” Cecil’s, is a place where you can get your clothes dry cleaned, have a shotgun wedding, get drunk while watching the race, and kids eat free at the buffet with soft serve ice cream. The song is brilliant, paints quite an epic picture, and sounds awesome to boot!
It’s been awhile since Tracy’s last album, and even longer since his last #1 (“Find Out Who Your Friends Are”). However, Headlights, Tailights, & Radios is worth every penny you’ll spend to buy it (and well worth the wait)! Please visit Tracy’s website to find out how get your own copy. You won’t regret it!
Listen To The Album below: