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Rhinestoned CD

4.9 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

With career sales topping 5 million units, multiple Grammy award winner Pam Tillis returns with Rhinestoned, her first studio release in almost 5 years following 2002's critically acclaimed "It's All Relative, a Tribute to Mel Tillis." Co-produced by Tillis herself and veteran writer/producer Gary Nicholson (Delbert McClinton, The Judds, Wynonna).

Rhinestoned resonates with the same heartfelt and dynamic vocals that made Pam a staple at country radio and one of the genre's most enduring and identifiable artists. Tillis continues to revel in her role as an interpreter of timeless country songs. Rhinestoned features many of Nashville's finest songwriters, including Matraca Berg, Walt Wilkins, Leslie Satcher, Jon Randall, Gary Nicholson and Pam herself.

Stepping out of the confines of today's slick and calculated country music, Tillis surrounded herself in the studio with a bevy of cool talent, including mixing engineer Ray Kennedy (Steve Earle, Lucinda Williams). Pam opts for the emotional immediacy of a studio record recorded mostly "direct to disc"... just pure, uninhibited moments.

On Rhinestoned, neo-traditionalist Pam Tillis draws inspiration from her love of folk, bluegrass, roots and traditional country and invites the listener to walk with her across the bridge of Country Music's Past and Country Music's Future.

Amazon.com

Pam Tillis spent decades flirting with folk, jazz, and rock before she finally settled down with country, the genre her father, Mel, bred into her bones. The 1994 CMA Female Vocalist of the Year, she had a powerful, head-resonant soprano, and enjoyed a good run with such bankable hits as "Don't Tell Me What to Do," "Spilled Perfume," and the wonderfully wistful "All the Good Ones Are Gone." Then she lost her commercial verve. In 2002, Tillis smartly paid tribute to papa with It's All Relative, a collection of the stuttering legend's material, and now, five years later, she returns with her first album on her own label. But with three producers on board, the results are mixed, at best. Though Tillis picked a stellar group of musicians (mandolinist Sam bush and duet partner John Anderson among them) and chose material from such memorable writers as Leslie Satcher, Matraca Berg, and Jon Randall, the album never really comes together, and much of what's there fails to catch fire. Her intention was apparently to make what she calls a "hippie country" record harkening to the '70s, but it isn't really that--her production seldom takes chances beyond the wrong-headed use of a clarinet, and her arrangements lack the slouch-shouldered joie de vivre of that decade. Still, Rhinestoned has its moments: Satcher's exquisite "That Was a Heartache," Tillis's own "The Hard Way," and Lisa Brokop's humorous "Band in the Window," which captures the tacky thrill of the honky-tonk life. --Alanna Nash
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 17, 2007)
  • Original Release Date: April 17, 2007
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Stellar Cat Records
  • Run Time: 45 minutes
  • ASIN: B000O590FM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #225,750 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Ross on April 26, 2007
Format: Audio CD
Playing Time - 44:52 -- Born in 1957, the daughter of country music singer Mel Tillis first appeared at the Ryman Auditorium when she was just eight years old. Now she's on the list of top female country singers of all time. Drawing material from many influences, Pam's always been known for incorporating pop, rock, bluegrass, folk and other influences into her country. For example, acoustic stringsters like Bryan Sutton, Sam Bush, Aubrey Haynie, Steven Sheehan and Jonathan Yudkin add a few tasty bluegrass flavorings to the mix that primarily emphasizes electric guitar, bass, piano, organ and drums. Pam's own composition, "Life Has Sure Changed Us Around" is a tongue-in-cheek statement sung with John Anderson in one of the more acoustic arrangements.

For a Texas rockabilly beat with some understated banjo, John Armenti's "Down by the Water" is just the ticket. Jim Hoke's clarinet and harmonica impart an old-time jazz sensibility to "Crazy By Myself." The talking blues storyline of "Bettin' Money on Love" evolves into a cautionary tale about taking chances, making choices, winding up hurting, and spending a little fortune on love. Anyone who's ever played or partied in the country honky-tonks will be able to relate to the story of Red, Louise and Tommy in "Band in the Window." Drawn to trouble and courting disaster, Pam's own self-penned "The Hard Way" is an expressive statement as she sings "I love to play with matches `tho I have to walk through fire." Bluegrass and Celtic instrumental flavorings of banjo, mandolin and pennywhistle close the set in "Over My Head."

It's been a few years since Pam released her "Thunder and Roses" and "It's All Relative" projects.
Read more ›
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I've always been a big Pam Tillis fan. Her voice is one of the most unique in Country Music, and she sure knows how to sell a song. She's outdone herself here. This may be one of her best albums ever. She's singing better than ever, and she makes you believe every word. "Train Without A Whistle" and "Someone Somewhere Tonight" will break your heart. "Bettin' Money on Love" and "Crazy By Myself" will have you grinning. And the duet wih John Anderson, "Life Sure Has Changed Us Around" is a classic. Kudos to the musicians, as well. There's some great playing on this album. It's all just wonderfully done. If you like Country Music, you owe it to yourself to check out "Rhinestoned". It's the real deal.
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The voice has matured like a classic wine and from the opening bars of "Something Burning Out" it captures the ear and the emotion. Tilli takes us on a journey through the powerful "Train without a Whistle", the out there "Crazy by Myself" and her own "The Hard Way". Unlike a classic wine you can consume more and more of this CD without getting a hangover!
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Immediately, we get a drop-dead gorgeous ballad, "Something Burning Out." No stopping Pam Tillis, whose just shown us with her last album, IT'S ALL RELATIVE, the tribute to father Mel, that this artist is not nearly ready to be written off. Like the previous one, RHINESTONED is a superb country record with lots of heart and varied rhythms, styles and even genres. The duet with John Anderson is lots of fun, and they're great together. My favorite has shaken out to be "Down By The Water," a fast and catchy folk/rock song. Pam has succeeded again at telling great stories, and singing with a clearly engaged voice. We believe every word. In songs like "Train Without A Whistle," "Crazy By Myself" and "Bettin' Money On Our Love," we get vividly etched portraits of people and the singer herself. The playing on this album is just about perfect throughout. Other reviewers have given the details, but my conclusion is that Pam Tillis continues to be a valuable force in country music who doesn't need to be packaged or pitch-corrected. This woman can sing, but she's not a showoff. In another singer's hands, Pam's own "The Hard Way" might have been histrionic or maudlin. Instead, entirely due to Pam's relaxed phrasing and straightforward singing, this song is poignantly beautiful; Tillis has never sounded better, but she lets everyone shine, one sign of a seasoned artist at the top of her game, free to do whatever she wants to do, and welcoming everyone along for the ride. As a songwriter, Pam Tillis holds her own with the other writers whose songs she's chosen. Rhinestoned? No, these are polished gems.
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Pam Tillis is the real deal. She is a living legend and in my opinion one of the most important and talented female artists in country music. Tillis doesn't make records in hopes of just being played on the radio, she makes records that mean something to her and to her fans. You will not be disappointed with the album. Nashville needs to open it's ears to this and not all the junk that is being played on country radio. This is one of Pam's best records ever!
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When I first heard Pam Tillis was releasing a new album I was excited. I am not what you would call a major fan. I have only grown to like her stuff the last few years. With Rhinestoned Pam shows that she can choose and sing songs that most artists would not dare to even touch. You feel as if she has lived every song and emotion of this album. It is a must have for any music lover.
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