Black Music Matters Festival

Craig Morgan

Little Bit of Life – 2006 (Broken Bow)

Reviewed by Kevin Oliver

See it on Amazon

CDs by Craig Morgan

Once an artist has a really big hit, like Craig Morgan did with 2005's, "That's What I Love About Sunday," the pressure's on from the Nashville suits to produce another just like it. The title track to Morgan's fourth album serves the retread purpose here, spouting off a litany of the ordinary stuff that life's made of, like sleeping with the windows down, supper on the table, etc. It is essentially an uptempo combination of, "Sunday" and hit followup, "Redneck Yacht Club," but Morgan's delivery nearly sells the song by itself.

A classic country singer in every sense of the word, Morgan's natural drawl is aided by longtime Alan Jackson producer Keith Stegall this time. He surrounds Morgan with arrangements that lean on the Hammond organ and fiddle breaks more than most contemporary country acts these days, but without timeless songs, the traditional sound is mostly wasted.

"Tough," is a tear-jerking Brooks & Dunn-style ballad about true strength that works, but too much of the remainder sounds like an artist trying too hard to make lightning strike twice.