10 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

Radney Foster’s 1992 debut is a rarity within modern country music: an album with a lot of kick but absolutely no pretense or theatricality. The plainspoken Foster doesn’t overplay his voice, nor does he assume the macho cowboy affectations that can befall even the most talented of Nashville’s contemporary performers. His debut is full of hooks and climactic choruses—check out “A Fine Line,” “Don’t Say Goodbye," and “Hammer and Nails”—but he avoids bloated deliveries or saccharine veneers. Even in the sweeping, weepy ballad “Easier Said Than Done,” the feeling is drawn from classic country and gospel, not stadium rock. Foster's much more than a neo-traditionalist, but it'd be lying to say that his chrome-plated Bakersfield swing numbers “Just Call Me Lonesome” and “Louisiana Blues” aren’t two of the best songs here. “Old Silver” is a great closer, full of the natural feeling that's so lacking in contemporary country. But the gold star must go to “Closing Time,” an alcoholic hymn for the ages.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Radney Foster’s 1992 debut is a rarity within modern country music: an album with a lot of kick but absolutely no pretense or theatricality. The plainspoken Foster doesn’t overplay his voice, nor does he assume the macho cowboy affectations that can befall even the most talented of Nashville’s contemporary performers. His debut is full of hooks and climactic choruses—check out “A Fine Line,” “Don’t Say Goodbye," and “Hammer and Nails”—but he avoids bloated deliveries or saccharine veneers. Even in the sweeping, weepy ballad “Easier Said Than Done,” the feeling is drawn from classic country and gospel, not stadium rock. Foster's much more than a neo-traditionalist, but it'd be lying to say that his chrome-plated Bakersfield swing numbers “Just Call Me Lonesome” and “Louisiana Blues” aren’t two of the best songs here. “Old Silver” is a great closer, full of the natural feeling that's so lacking in contemporary country. But the gold star must go to “Closing Time,” an alcoholic hymn for the ages.

TITLE TIME
3:11
3:31
3:40
4:01
4:07
3:30
3:24
3:37
5:01
5:28

About Radney Foster

Radney Foster started his career as a songwriter, then found commercial success and critical acclaim as part of the duo Foster & Lloyd, and finally embarked on a solo career in 1991 that centered on his literate approach to country songwriting. Foster was born in Del Rio, TX, and took up the guitar at age 12. He began performing small-club gigs while attending the University of the South, a liberal arts college in Sewanee, TN, and took leave from school to try his luck in Nashville. In 1985, he signed with the MTM publishing firm as a staff songwriter, and soon struck up a partnership with Bill Lloyd, who joined the company two months later. Their "Since I Found You" became a Top Ten hit for the Sweethearts of the Rodeo, and on the strength of their demo tape RCA signed them as recording artists. Foster & Lloyd recorded three albums from 1987-1990, and landed a series of Top Ten singles in addition to complimentary reviews.

When their third album tanked, the duo amicably disbanded and Foster pursued a solo career. His debut, Del Rio, Texas, 1959, appeared in 1992 and proved a commercial as well as critical success; four of its singles hit the Top 40, and of those, "Just Call Me Lonesome" made the Top Ten, while "Nobody Wins" fell one spot short of the top of the country charts. However, the 1995 follow-up, Labor of Love, wasn't quite as popular with audiences as it was with critics. Foster revamped his approach on his third solo effort, 1999's See What You Want to See, which was more influenced by pop and rock. He subsequently parted ways with his label, Arista, and signed with the smaller Dualtone, which issued the live album Are You Ready for the Big Show?, a more traditional country outing, in 2001. The studio follow-up, 2002's Another Way to Go, found Foster exploring classic-style R&B in addition to country. In 2004 he released the acoustic album And Then There's Me (The Back Porch Sessions), only available online, but 2006 saw another Dualtone record, This World We Live In. ~ Steve Huey

  • ORIGIN
    Del Rio, TX
  • BORN
    Jul 20, 1959

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