It took a long time and a lot of spins and even a bit of research to find out what was missing from this new Tanya Tucker album. The project is obviously a heartfelt one and not just designed to cash in on a continuing trend of resurrecting old songs and giving them a new, glossy paint job. Tucker has recorded a dozen songs for this disc that were favorite of her late father Beau.
She certainly wasn't afraid to take on the giants. The disc has Hank Williams' (Lovesick Blues ), Buck Owens' (Love's Gonna Live Here) and Don Gibson's (Oh Lonesome Me). So, obviously the problem wasn't the material. Tucker is successful in making the songs sound fresh and is able to use her considerable vocal skills to give each tune its proper treatment while keeping them her own. So that wasn't it either. Pete Anderson's production is right on the mark as is his guitar work. Yet, Anderson is ultimately at the root of the problem.
The record has an antiseptic quality that comes close to spoiling the finished product. What should have been a disc filled with emotion instead is more noteworthy for its precision. The problem ultimately is that the instrumental tracks and the vocals were put down at different times in different states. Sometimes that might work, but here it renders the disc devoid of the interaction that could have brought the music to life. Tucker still has the pipes and the sass to get the job done, and that is on display here in no small quantities, but the disc isn't the great one it could have been.