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Heartbreaker's Hall of Fame


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Audio CD, March 6, 2007
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 6, 2007)
  • Original Release Date: 2007
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Big Machine Records
  • ASIN: B000MV8C9I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,709 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Refresh My Memory
2. East Texas Pines
3. Next Big Nothing
4. Lavender Blue
5. Ten Years Pass
6. Here Lately
7. Heartbreaker's Hall Of Fame
8. Slow Swinging Western Tunes
9. Please Be San Antone
10. Mama's Opry
11. If I Could
12. 16th Avenue

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

One spin through the debut of Austin-based singer-songwriter Sunny Sweeney and you may think you've entered a time warp: The Longview, Texas, native so hearkens to the honky-tonk era of the '60s and '70s that you half expect to find her on an old kinescope of one of those syndicated Nashville TV shows, the special guest ("Let's bring up a little gal now from Texas...") of the Wilburn Brothers or Porter and Dolly. Sweeney isn't a power vocalist--she'd be called a "girl singer" in the old days, stepping up demurely to do her song or two--but she's got a sense of humor, poking fun of herself on "Next Big Nothing" and insisting if you play one song in reverse, you get a broken heart. She can also cop an attitude when she wants, as on "Heartbreaker's Hall of Fame," an original tune where she evokes the good-ol'-gal assertiveness of Loretta Lynn. Sweeney has fine taste in covers, too, offering up Iris DeMent's 'Mama's Opry" and the Lacy J. Dalton hit "16th Avenue," as well as two songs by Jim Lauderdale, who lends his vocals to Keith Sykes's "Lavender Blue." Otherwise, Sweeney doesn't seem to care a flip about what's going on anyplace but right there in the Lone Star State, keeping things twangy, tangy, and tonkin', the teardrop pedal steel functioning almost as a duet vocalist, and her guitarists eschewing Music City formula riffs for stuttering electric solos and the occasional walking bass. It's been a long time since any young female--think Joy Lynn White, maybe--got this deep-dish country. Sweeney may never get on the radio, but she'll keep the sawdust swirling on the dance floor for a long time to come. --Alanna Nash

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
5 star
27
4 star
8
3 star
3
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 38 customer reviews
It is real Country Music and Texas genuine.
Daniel Winegarden
Writing from personal experience to be honest and convincing seem to drive her songwriting.
Joseph Ross
I highly recommend this album to the serious country music lover.
Paul Ferguson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 0 people found the following review helpful By Vito Minerva on March 13, 2007
Format: Audio CD
This is one of my favourite albums of 2006 (and 2007, now that it has been reissued). Sunny Sweeney has made a really impressive debut, collecting together 12 great songs, mostly uptempo and honky tonk (9 covers and 3 originals). Her voice reminds me of Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines, like the previous reviewer, but unlike him I have no reserves about her singing, which I find fresh, energetic and twangy, the right combination for this kind of music.

Sweeney's main musical influences are Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Townes Van Zandt, Loretta Lynn, Jim Lauderdale, Dwight Yoakam and Iris DeMent and you can hear every bit of them in the album. Actually, this album can be seen as Sweeney's homage to her favourite artists. Some of them are explicitly present: two covers are taken from Lauderdale's catalogue (they are "Refresh My Memory" and "Please Be San Antone") and one from Iris DeMent's songbook ("Mama's Opry"). Lauderdale also nicely duets with Sweeney in "Lavender Blue". Sidebar: in the original the duet was between Keith Sykes and Iris DeMent: could it be another (indirect) way to pay tribute to one of her favourite singers?

The other covers are equally good, even though I hadn't heard of their authors before. Particularly enjoyable are "East Texas Pines" by Libbi Bosworth and "If I could" by Tim Carroll: their quick-paced rhythm should make them favorites at live shows. I also like the ironic and self-deprecating "Next Big Nothing" by Audrey Auld ("I'm gonna be the next big nothing, you won't see my name on MTV").

In my opinion, the originals are one step below the other songs and Sunny seems aware of that, when she says "I've heard it said before that good cover songs are better than bad originals".
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Ross on March 7, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Playing Time - 39:27 -- Based in Austin, the vivacious Sunny Sweeney sings smart, tuneful songs on this auspicious debut. Her infectious spunk is perfect for the sturdy alt-country and Americana offerings. She has assembled a formidable band, but I noted that vocal harmonies were a tad understated. Sunny's Texas drawl conveys some rather alluring sensuality or honky tonky kick-up-yer-heels fun on both originals and covers. Sweeney's originals include "Ten Years Pass," "Slow Swinging Western Tunes," and "Heartbreaker's Hall of Fame." While she's written many songs, these are her best and the ones she was most comfortable and enthusiastic about presenting to us. They've got some memorable melodies and lyrical sentiments. Writing from personal experience to be honest and convincing seem to drive her songwriting. Jim Lauderdale co-wrote two numbers, "Refresh My Memory" and "Please Be San Antone." Jim also makes a cameo appearance in a duet with Sunny on Keith Sykes' "Lavender Blue." Her optimism and exuberance are exciting. I serious doubt that she'll be the "Next Big Nothing" as she facetiously suggests.

I love to hear singers express emotions about their own regions or homes. Covering another Texas singer's hit, Sunny gives a mighty fine Lone Star treatment to Libbi Bosworth's "East Texas Pines." Sunny was raised in the piney woods of east Texas near Longview, got a degree in public relations at S.W. Texas State Univ., tried her hand at improv theater/comedy, and then decided to form a country band. Produced by Tom Lewis and Tommy Detamore, the album was also designed with an objective of portraying her ebullient personality and capturing the kind of live show she presents.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Winegarden on April 16, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Sunny Sweeney's debut album, Heartbreaker's Hall of Fame is compelling and catching. It feels more like a live honky-tonk performance in part because it has the pared down sound of a great bar band and not the over produced sound of too many studio albums. Sunny is a singer song-writer. The album offers a mix of her work and that of other song-writers.

What first caught my ear was the song, "If I Could." It's an infectious anthem for the average worker with an auctioneer's tempo for the catchy chorus. I found this song through Yahoo's Music Videos Country Music channel. Yahoo generates a play list, including new offerings based upon your past selections and ratings. It works. I loved this song and bought the album. A lot of catchy songs don't move me to buy. Sunny got my money.

Another special treat is a cover of, "16th Avenue," a song made famous by Lacey J. Dalton. The cover nicely matches the rest of the album in voice and tone and is not an exact copy of Dalton's version. Sunny Sweeney makes it hers.

The album is solid and engaging. It is real Country Music and Texas genuine. I'll be watching for more from Sunny Sweeney. She reputedly has a great following around her home base in Austin, Texas. I think her fan base is set to grow.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Vito Minerva on December 16, 2006
Format: Audio CD
This is one of my favourite CDs of 2006. Sunny Sweeney has made a really impressive debut album, collecting together 12 great songs, mostly uptempo and honky tonk (9 covers and 3 originals). Her voice reminds me of Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines, like the previous reviewer, but unlike him I have no reserves about her singing, which I find fresh, energetic and twangy, the right combination for this kind of music.

Sweeney's main musical influences are Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Townes Van Zandt, Loretta Lynn, Jim Lauderdale, Dwight Yoakam and Iris DeMent and you can hear every bit of them in the album. Actually, this album can be seen as Sweeney's homage to her favourite artists. Some of them are explicitly present: two covers are taken from Lauderdale's catalogue (they are "Refresh My Memory" and "Please Be San Antone") and one from Iris DeMent's songbook ("Mama's Opry"). Lauderdale also nicely duets with Sweeney in "Lavender Blue". Sidebar: in the original the duet was between Keith Sykes and Iris DeMent: could it be another (indirect) way to pay tribute to one of her favourite singers?

The other covers are equally good, even though I hadn't heard of their authors before. Particularly enjoyable are "East Texas Pines" by Libbi Bosworth and "If I could" by Tim Carroll: their quick-paced rhythm should make them favorites at live shows. I also like the ironic and self-deprecating "Next Big Nothing" by Audrey Auld ("I'm gonna be the next big nothing, you won't see my name on MTV").

In my opinion, the originals are one step below the other songs and Sunny seems aware of that, when she says "I've heard it said before that good cover songs are better than bad originals".
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
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