Great country rock - but strong in softer sounds as well
Country to The Core with Rock’n’Roll’s rebellious reputation or Jesse Keith Whitley is a modern day outlaw. The first words of the bio of Jesse Keith Whitley definitely feel promising. I just happened to run into his album Breakin’ Ground, when scanning the 14th May 2021 releases.
Jesse Keith Whitley – About The Artist
The name similarity to legendary country musician Keith Whitley, who died in Nashville in May 1989 due to alcohol poisoning, is no luck: Jesse Keith Whitley is the son of the artist, At the time of the death of his father, Jesse Keith Whitley has just been two years old. At the twentieth anniversary of his father’s death, Jesse Keith Whitley re-released his debut album. Now, more than ten years later, there is the debut album with his very own material.
Jesse Keith Whitley – Breakin’ Ground – Track by Track
The eleven track album lasts forty minutes.
1. Breakin’ Ground
Country with Rock’n’Roll something? The album definitely starts exactly like this. The guitarists have fun, the female background voice spreads additional rock power (and some soul touch as well). When I looked into the new releases of 14th May 2021 and listened to Jesse Keith Whitley’s voice, I just had to go with them. This song wasn’t even a single release. As promising as an opening (and title) track can be.
2. Messin’ with the Wrong Man
If you think you’re fooling me boy // you’re messing with the wrong man. The second track of the album is also very powerful and straight. The dark voice of Jesse Keith Whitley is leading to an amazing touch of the song. What I love as well about him: many darker country voices are a bit harder to understand – at least for me as a non-native speaker. This deep roar of country rockin’ is crystal clear. Great to enjoy the story. Posh arrangement with some string-alike sounds in the background, by the way.
3. Try to Change My Ways
The first song on the album being releasing as a single starts with some easy acoustic-alike chord scrumming and a relatively quiet start. But the song gains more and more power over time. The instrumental part latest is a treat for powerful guitar sound lovers. The song is referencing his father’s history.
4. I Went Crazy for a While
I ran out of my mind So that I wouldn’t have to see A fool in the mirror, a face reality And I stared at a picture for so long I saw a smile Yeah, I went crazy for a while.
After the rocking start, a second second that proofs how wonderful his talents are (also) on the softer side of music. Beautiful ballad.
5. Workin’ from the Other Side
Daddy might be gone, he’s just working from the other side. Another song, in which Jesse Keith Whitley is referencing to his father. A song with a lot of love. He went on to a better place, I went on with life. Risk of goosebumps while listening.
6. Already Been Crazy
This single release comes with a nice rock’n’roll groove and a lot of power. I’ve already been crazy – and that’s crazy enough for me. Great sound with a nice rather traditional country music blending. A song, which has already been on my Country Music Playlists, by the way.
7. Feelin’ coming’ on
The seventh song of the album comes with a lovely atmosphere. Again, Whitley is working with elements like strings in the background. A song, which simply catches you. Great one.
8. Think of Me (feat. Lorrie Morgan)
Jessie Keith Whitley does not only have a legendary father, but of course also a very famous mother. Think of Me is a beautiful duet of mother of son, which is also a reference to one of Keith Whitley’s greatest ones, I wonder do you think of me. Lovely sound.
9. Sent Me You
The album stays very emotional with that beautiful love song.
And I called out to Jesus as a stranger And as for forgiveness He sent me an angel.
That’s the way to touch American country music listeners’ hearts close to perfection.
10. Along for the Ride
A bit more power again on this ride again. Just a good song to relax and have some fun. Good one.
Jesse Keith Whitley closes his debut with a cover. Faithfully, originally by Journey (the Don’t Stop Believin’ guys…) in his version is just such a catching piano power ballad. Lovely!
Jesse Keith Whitley – Breakin’ Ground – Spotify
Here is the album on Spotify:
Jesse Keith Whitley – Breakin’ Ground – My View
I am sure his father is really, really proud of Jesse Keith Whitley. Breakin’ Ground is a great debut, powerful songs and a wide range of styles. I love it most when Jesse Keith Whitley is rocking – but he does other styles successfully as well. The Whitley music dynasty is heading into their new generation. Top Pick!