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Now Playing at the Wonkytonk

I'm kicking off the year and firing off my first ever country music blog review with Lee Ann Womack's album "Call Me Crazy."

Folks, you can call me crazy because I am having some serious fangirl love for this album.   

Womack and producer Tony Brown have done for contemporary country what Alison Krauss has spent a career doing for bluegrass:  They've made lonesome tangible.  Touchable.  The first single "Last Call" is a song to sip from a shotglass.  Womack's haunting vocal narration complemented by a slick arrangement of steel and acoustic guitar with well-timed piano creates an irony that leaves you wondering -- Is it really the last call?  In the soulful "Solitary Thinkin'," Womack's vocals carry a lyric-appropriate although somewhat predictable R&B groove. But make no mistake, they do carry it and make it clearly country.  Her pure voice, twangy yet sophisticated, drawls yet another believable, bar room tale.  With the nostalgic "New Again," a two-stepping duet ("Everything But Quits") with King George Strait, harmonies on "The Bees" from Keith Urban, Lee Ann Womack sings her way to a possible album of the year honor with this one.