Sammy Kershaw has been on the downslide for awhile -- he has not had a top 20 hit since 1999. His personal life hasn't been the smoothest going either -- with an on-again off-again marriage to Lorrie Morgan.
Whether his fortunes change will not be because of the lack of quality on his latest and first full length release for a Nashville upstart label. Kershaw sounds in very fine vocal form whether on the soulful led-off "Tennessee Girl," the more uptempo ad louder "Honky Tonk Boots," the more traditional country sounding "Leavin' Made Easy," the Cajun flavored "Evangeline" or the mid-tempo "Baby's Got Her Blue Jeans On," a 1985 hit for Mel McDaniel.
Kershaw sings -- with a vocal ode to George Jones -- like he means it on the tougher sounding numbers and got enough timbre in his vocal delivery to come through no matter what the style.
Ace producer Buddy Cannon, who received help from Norro Wilson on all but 3 of the 10 cuts, probably deserves a lot of the credit for ensuring a top-flight, cohesive performance from Kershaw that works throughout. The songs except for the somewhat silly "Mama's Got a Tatoo," are excellent choices for Kershaw's abilities. The Louisiana native has done his part in coming through with a meaty performance.