Artist: Lyle Lovett
Title: Release Me
Curb Records, February 2012
I could write for hours about the numerous services available from Shreve Memorial Library. For me personally, one of the most fun and often overlooked aspects of the library is the opportunity it gives for exploring and discovering music that I probably would not have become familiar with otherwise. The music of Lyle Lovett is a perfect example of this. Shreve Memorial Library has numerous titles by Lovett that I’ve enjoyed listening to. When his latest disc, Release Me, hit library shelves, I knew I had to check it out.
Release Me is a rollicking tour of Americana music. Fiddle, mandolin, piano, numerous guitar flavorings, a superb horn section, and perfect vocal harmonies transition between country, rock, bluegrass, jazz, and blues with ease. The slickly produced album only contains two originals written by Lovett. The majority of the album consists of covers of songs by artists like Jesse Winchester, Chuck Berry, and Townes Van Zandt. The music on Release Me changes genre and mood from song to song, but somehow it works without seeming disjointed at all. Fittingly, the album closes with a beautiful hymn of unification – “Keep Us Steadfast”, written by Martin Luther in 1542.
A few years ago, I knew who Lyle Lovett was. He was married to Julia Roberts, right? Unfortunately, I had never paid much attention to him beyond that. Luckily, the library was there to introduce me to his amazing music.
If you enjoy the musical styles that I’ve mentioned in this review, Release Me is the perfect album for becoming acquainted with the music of Lyle Lovett. The library has numerous other titles by Lovett that you can check out also – Pontiac (1987), Lyle Lovett and His Large Band (1989), Live in Texas (1999), My Baby Don’t Tolerate (2003), and Smile: Songs From the Movies (2003).