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Walking Distance (Bonus Track Version)

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Album Review

Sometimes a disc comes along without any expectations and hits one right out of the ballpark. Such is the case with Robert Earl Keen's Walking Distance. Although much less of an alt-country affair than his earlier work, Walking Distance comes across warm and friendly. Keen's humor crops up on "That Bucking Song," which he says is all about riding a horse, while "Down That Dusty Trail" is full of childhood memories. "Feelin' Good Again" shows that for all the bad times, it is the good times that make us feel, and then some. Perhaps that's the message that Keen is trying to convey this time out, and if it is, then sit back and feel good about feeling good. We get the next installment of Keen's twisted take on an original Christmas song in "Happy Holidays, Y'All." Once you hear it, you won't be able to help yourself from singing along to a tale that nearly everyone who's spent the holidays with the family can identify with. No matter what, Keen's Walking Distance is just around the next bend from wherever you might be.


Born: 11 January 1956 in Houston, TX

Genre: Country

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Among the large contingent of talented songwriters who emerged in Texas in the 1980s and '90s, Robert Earl Keen struck an unusual balance between sensitive story-portraits ("Corpus Christi Bay") and raucous barroom fun ("That Buckin' Song"). These two song types in Keen's output were unified by a mordant sense of humor that strongly influenced the early practitioners of what would become known as alternative country music. Keen, the son of an oil executive father and an attorney mother, was a native...
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