Mel Tillis

Me and Pepper – 2008 (Collector's Choice)

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

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CDs by Mel Tillis

This disc, which features Tillis riding his horse Pepper on the cover, contains its share of highlights. One in particular, "Lying Time Again," smartly rhymes its title with a popular hit by substituting "lying" for "crying." Tillis' full-bodied vocals bring out the lyric's pathos when he moans, "Lord, the stories never end/And it's lying time again." With "This Is Me," Tillis distances himself from all the prior losers in a woman's life. "I'm not Larry or Barry or Tom, Dick or Harry/Or Richard or Michael or Jim/I'm not any of them." "Hey, this is me/This is not someone else," he announces, while trying to get her attention. Overcoming the baggage caused past partners is one of the toughest relationship obstacles, and this song accurately addresses that issue. (The CD has no horse songs on it, by the way, so what Tillis' horse Pepper has to do with anything is anybody's guess).