Jo Dee Messina
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After the popular breakthrough of 1998's I'm Alright
, Jo Dee Messina returns with another testament to the power of positive singing. Practically every song on her third album plays like the musical equivalent of a self-help book, from the postbreakup recovery of the album-opening "Downtime" to the "be anyone you want to be" affirmation of the title track. The Boston-bred, Nashville-based Messina is a younger generation's Reba
, with the conviction in her conversational phrasing redeeming the clichés of her material ("Live, love, seize the day") and transcending the mechanical schlock of so many of the arrangements. The duet with coproducer Tim McGraw
on "Bring on the Rain" is an album-closing highlight. --Don McLeese