The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

CD Review

By Frankie Farrar-helm/entertainment editor

Listen up, country music fans. If you miss the good ol’ simple guitar tunes that existed before the mainstream-pop genre devoured them, country artist Amy Black has something for you.

Black’s second album One Time, released March 29, is like a Jack Daniels and Coke — a delicious blend of straight Tennessee originality with a splash of bubbly sweetness.

The Nashville native fuses traditional bluegrass melodies with modern, contemporary beats to create music reminiscent of female country stars from the ’90s.

The singer/songwriter’s success at local open-mic nights quickly led her to form a band of talented, eclectic musicians. The all-American cast includes New England players Lyle Brewer, Tim Gearan and Mark Erelli on guitar with Jesse Williams on bass, Roger Williams on dobro and Nashville favorite Stuart Duncan on the fiddle and mandolin.

The opening track “Run Johnny” tells the story of a girl murdered in Alabama. Its lyrics read, “Well they found her by the river, bloodstain on her dress … That ain’t no way to treat your woman, Johnny … Ain’t no love in death.” The track’s heavy foot-stompin’ beats, harmonica tunes and various Southern acoustic sounds create a rich down-home atmosphere.

A song that better represents the old country feel on the album is “You Ain’t Woman Enough (To Take My Man).” Black’s cover of the original 1966 hit is superb. Get ready, Loretta Lynn fans — there’s a new woman in town.

“Whiskey and Wine,” one of the slower, soulful tracks on the album, is a tenderly written, romantic anecdote about two lovers who are the opposite of each other. “Whiskey and wine, that’s you and me baby … It’s taken some time to figure this thing out. I know I love you, and I think you love me too, but maybe that ain’t what this is all about,” Black sings.

Black wraps the album up with a cover of Johnny Cash’s last recorded song, which was released last year, titled “Ain’t No Grave (Gonna Hold My Body Down).” The legendary guitar notes and haunting vocals by Cash have gained a wider audience since it has become the latest theme song for WWE wrestler The Undertaker. Black’s version sounds like the original but with a faster tempo and higher pitch.

Overall, Black shows her gift as a singer/songwriter through her originality. However, she overreached by doing covers of country music idols in her second album.

It’s like that saying: “Who sings that song? Oh yeah … well let them sing it.”

Donate to The Collegian

Your donation will support the student journalists of Tarrant County College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Collegian