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STARific Review: Craig Morgan - My Kind of Livin'

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Craig Morgan is on a roll these days! Ever since he found success with "Almost Home" (from his previous album, I Love It), the magic touch hasn't left him. Beginning late 2004, "That's What I Love About Sunday" dominated the charts; the debut single from his new album My Kind of Livin' staked out the #1 spot for an unprecedented FIVE weeks. He generated even more steam with the release of follow-up single, "Redneck Yacht Club," which became the fastest rising single of his career to date. Part of his success can likely be attributed to the fact that, whether he writes them or not, Craig is known for choosing and singing compelling story-songs. Thanks to the eight songs he co-wrote and four others he didn't, fans will get a clear picture of Craig's Kind of Livin'. As on I Love It, he again shares producing credits on this album.

THAT'S WHAT I LOVE ABOUT SUNDAY is a three-and-a-half minute slice of every day life. Perhaps the reason behind the impressive stay at the top of the charts is because, like Craig, fans understand even the littlest and simplest pleasures of life! I GOT YOU is a feel-good song that expresses gratitude for that special someone who makes live worth living. Next is the piano ballad THAT'S WHEN I'LL BELIEVE THAT YOU'RE GONE, which finds a man living each day feeding on heartaches, tears, and memories of happier times. Another co-write, Craig proudly proclaims I'M COUNTRY, singing "I ain't what I ain't but I am what I am." LOTTA MAN (IN THAT LITTLE BOY) is a touching tearjerker; this reflective ballad was, incidentally, inspired by one of Craig's sons (listen to the second verse). IF YOU LIKE THAT is for all the hopeless romantics in this world; it is a beautifully-written song that proves life doesn't have to be perfect for love to finds its way to its destination. The heavily pensive AIN'T THE WAY I WANNA GO OUT follows the lives of two men who lived for tomorrow – that is, until the day when tomorrow never came. The catchy banjo and fiddle introduction to REDNECK YACHT CLUB picks the mood right back up and cheerfully invites listeners into a club that everyone can join! From there, it's a straight shot toward some pure country fun! The skies get dark in RAIN FOR THE ROSES. Funny how it takes something as simple as rain to remind us of what the most important things in life are! On BLAME ME, Craig enlists help from two of his dear friends: the legendary John Conlee and a legend in the making, Brad Paisley. All three give commanding vocal performances (Brad also lent his guitar-picking talent to the track), and in fact, there isn't a more perfect threesome who could pull off this ode to keepin' things country! Next up is a roses-to-ashes tragedy about the unlikely pairing of a COWBOY AND CLOWN. This waltz cleverly dances around the dangers of a rough and tumble life. IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD rounds out the album with a rockin' bang! Tipping a hat to the "regular folks," the final track paints an everyday picture that sits prettily above some deeply set country roots!

Craig's got another hit album on his hands with My Kind of Livin', and much to the credit of his talent and work ethic, I believe this is only the start to what will be a long-lasting career!

CD INFO:

Craig Morgan
My Kind of Livin’
Broken Bow Records
Released March 8, 2005

Craig Morgan

TRACK LISTING:

1. That's What I Love About Sunday
2. I Got You
3. That's When I'll Believe That You're Gone
4. I'm Country
5. Lotta Man (In That Little Boy)
6. If You Like That
7. Ain't the Way I Wanna Go Out
8. Redneck Yacht Club
9. Rain For the Roses
10. Blame Me
11. Cowboy and Clown
12. In My Neighborhood

Reviewed by: Estella Pan

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