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on September 26, 2010
Let me preface by saying that I love all kinds of music. From Country to Hip-hop, I love everything. My favorite band in the world is Dave Matthews Band, a band who much like ZBB is better live than in the studio. It took me a while to listen to "The Foundation" album because I wasn't immediately a fan of "Chicken Fried," but "Whatever it is" brought me on board to the idea of listening to it, and when I heard "Highway 20 Ride" for the first time I knew it was an album that I needed to listen to. But let me get to this album. There are 18 tracks available. The deluxe edition has 16, and the iTunes version carries an additional two tracks.

Now to the music.... WOW. Zac Brown Band is the best band to come along in the last 5 years and "Colder Weather" is possibly the best song I have heard in the last 5. I remember hearing it for the first time. I was watching the ZBB webcast from Bonaroo on Youtube live, and they were playing a fantastic show. About half-way through Zac took a breather and told the crowd that he was about to sing a song that he considered the best he had ever written. I wasn't sure what to expect, but from that beautiful piano intro, I was hooked! I was so upset that I didn't have a copy of this song that I went looking everywhere for it. I finally discovered that the song was available on a Live CD that the band had released entitled "Pass The Jar" so I immediately scooped it up. And that's how this crazy ZBB fan was born.

This album is incredible! I don't know how else to say it. From the catchy and single worthy opener "Let It Go" to the upbeat jamboree of "Whiskeys Gone" to the INCREDIBLE "Martin", a song about a man of music and the importance of his guitar, this album shines. It is not a country album. It is an album with some country songs, but mostly this is an album of unadulterated music. This is music. There is no genre, there is no box to place this band in, they are simply musicians and they present themselves as such. Lyrically this album is astounding, and much like Dave Matthews, Zac Brown WRITES all of his songs. You just don't find that often these days. So here's my take, song-by-song. Listen to this album! It is AMAZING!

1. Let It Go (10/10) - A catchy, singly worthy tune with a great hook. One of the best on the album

2. Knee Deep feat Jimmy Buffet (9/10)- this is more of a"toes" type song. It'll be great by the pool or on the beach next summer. Jimmy Buffet adds an increased island feel. Love it.

3. No Hurry (10/10) - Just a beautiful intro. I was hooked from second number one. Great lyrics, great musicality, very chill feel. Catchy chorus once again.

4. I Play the Road (9/10) - Another feel good song by the ZBB. Nothing sounds the same with this band, and the whole thing is filled with hooks that are memorable and delightful.

5. Cold Hearted (10/10) - Fantastic song about caring for someone who only hurts you with their cold heart. It reminds me of something from Motown almost. I'm not sure why, but it sounds familiar and different at the same time.

6. Whiskey's Gone (9/10) - The "Chicken Fried" of this album. This is one of the country songs on this album, but it's as great as most of the album.

7. Quiet Your Mind (10/10) - This song has a rock edge to it with this gospel inflection that's just amazing! QUIET YOUR MIND!

8. Colder Weather (20/10) - As I said above, it's the best song that I have heard in the last 5 years. It's perfectly written, produced, sung. Everything about this song is perfect. It's haunting, uplifting, full of imagery and essence. Absolute perfection. This song should be #1 for WEEKS.

9. Settle Me Down (9/10) - Another great "toes" like summer/beach song. Fun, funky, reggae like. This band is not afraid to try different sounds.

10. As She's Walking Away - (9/10) This song features Alan Jackson and is the first single off the album. Great harmonizing, nice gospel feel to it. Great song, but not the best on the album.

11. Keep Me in Mind (10/10) - Just a jazzy/bluesy/reggae feel good love song. Can't stop listening to it. One of the album's best. It's unlike other ZBB songs.

12. Who Knows (10/10) - The ZBB loves to jam out in concert, much like DMB, and this is their foray into a jam sesh on a studio album. 10 minutes long. It's freaking amazing, and you can tell the band LOVES playing this song. I feel like I would hear this song somewhere on Beale Street in Memphis from a band that simply loves playing music and exciting a crowd. This song does that for sure!

13. Martin (11/10) - WOW! I play guitar (as best I can haha). I've have my depressing moments in life, and there's this feeling when times are their worst that your guitar is the only thing that has your back. I've written songs, poetry, and even tried to write my own song about my guitar that I thought was good, but this song blows it away. When he says "He is a good friend, And he has his own voice. And you get what you give; Sometimes it's just noise. But if you treat him well, He will last your life long. And if you're honest and open Well, he will write you a song." Beauty and perfection

14. Make This Day (9/10)- This is my least favorite song on the album, but I understand why it might not be for others. Very upbeat. It's a catchy tune, but it just can't compare to the rest of this album.
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on September 20, 2010
Song to check out: "Colder Weather" (track #8)

"You Get What You Give" is another solid album, which again is filled with impressive and widely diverse music. It's clear that Zac Brown Band refuses to fit into the same mold of most other pop-country groups, as their music is versatile, and sounds much different than anything else on the radio. Listening to this CD will take you for a wild ride on a musical roller coaster. Zac Brown Band continues their style of genre blending by throwing in elements of Reggae, Island, Bluegrass, Acoustic Rock -- along with a pinch of Traditional Country. It has a very laid-back and stripped down style throughout the album, with minimal production. Their silky smooth harmonies are soothing and very refreshing.

Their fresh and pure harmonies are very evident on the first single from the album, "As She's Walking Away," which also features vocals and harmony from Alan Jackson. This huge hit single has lots of sweet fiddle, along with a great melody, and lyrics that almost everyone can relate to. It has a very traditional feel to it, but at the same time, is breezy and refreshing. Another colorful song is the crisp "Let It Go" -- an upbeat and catchy song which is just waiting in line to become a hit single. Even though it's upbeat, it still has a laid-back and acoustic-driven feel. One of the most laid-back and carefree songs on the album is the very tropical, "Knee Deep" -- a song which features Jimmy Buffett, and almost certainly will become a monster summer hit. It's a bit similar to "Toes," but even more catchy, and soothing... close your eyes, and just imagine yourself in your own paradise. It's a simple song, but perfectly executed. The amazing and abundant acoustic guitar and fiddle playing throughout the album make it clear that these guys are true musicians.

Perhaps the best song on the album is a powerful and haunting ballad, "Colder Weather." This masterpiece of a tune starts with an amazing piano melody, adds a catchy hook, and finishes with their tremendous harmony. The lyrics are deep, and tell a story of agony that a "ramblin' man" is facing -- I love you but I leave you / I don't want you but I need you. The fantastic vocals in the song are slightly reminiscent of classic James Taylor style hits. "Colder Weather" sounds like a blockbuster hit just waiting to be released.

Overall, You Get What You Give is a refreshing CD, loaded with impressively polished harmony. It seems clear that Zac Brown Band is here to stay -- I think their momentum will only keep on growing, and this will likely become one of the top selling albums of the year. I'd highly recommend giving this CD a listen, especially if you were a fan of The Foundation. If it's true that "you get what you give," I can see substantial things coming their way, as the Zac Brown Band have given an extraordinary set of songs here!
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on November 13, 2010
These guys must be a blast to see live. Great music and they seem to have fun playing it. My new favorite band.
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on February 24, 2015
Knee Deep in the water somewhere... Takes away some of the shivering caused by the wickedly LONG cold winters, giving you some hope and actually a goal to reach! Jimmy Buffett, of course, is the absolute best and has withstood the test of time, but the Zac Brown Band keeps me smiling too. Between those two, and Matt Hoggatt's Workaholic in Recovery, I believe I'll make it through the winter till I can be "Knee Deep" too.
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on March 2, 2014
I love Zac Brown. I love his music, I love the words, and I don't get tired of them. I listened to one cd about 8 times on an all-day drive through the Ozark mountains when I really couldn't look away to grab a different cd. Now when I hear the songs it takes me back to that day in the Ozarks. I have all of his cd's now and I like most of the songs on all of them. I hope he keeps writing for a long long time and I hope his popularity doesn't change his style. I put on his music and I dance and I sing and it makes me happy.
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on May 15, 2015
No one gives more, I've been a pro musician and tech for 40 yrs-no one is better than Zac and the band! Musicians superior. If he ever needs an ol' hippie chickie guitar tech that plays 26 instruments, call me!
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on February 5, 2014
I'll start out by saying- I am NOT a fan of country music. I love the Zac Brown Band- a super talented bunch of musicians. Great songs on this CD, vocals & harmonies are very nice and the songs are just upbeat with a "love for life" message. Especially like listening to some of the tracks that have me daydreaming of sunny and 75 summer days (as we're experiencing some really brutal Northeast winter days lately). recommend this CD.
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on July 25, 2014
What can I say, it's the Zac Brown Band. How could I rate it anything but a 5 star rating. I love so many of their songs, and was happy to hear stuff that's never made it to the airwaves. Well worth your money and your time.
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on March 11, 2013
Haven't purchased a bad Zac Brown Band CD yet, and have had the pleasure of seeing them in concert here in San Diego. A driving rain and hail while they played in an outdoor amphitheater didn't pose any problem for these amazing musicians! We all were concerned that the rain might shock someone in the band, but Zac and the guys still charged out onto the exposed runway and rocked the house. Their proclamation of "We're in this with you guys!" just made the experience that much more fun. I'm not a country music fan, more of a Trop-Rock (Jimmy Buffett music) aficianoado, but Zac Brown Band crosses over for jjst about anyone's music tastes.
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on July 17, 2014
A little disappointed . I really liked foundation but this cd is a little boring not the same energy and most of the songs sound the same. I think the band took a step backward with this cd. I would not recommend this cd.
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