Catalogue Number: No catalogue number
Review Format: CD
Release Year: 2007
Hey, there is actually a place called Chattanooga! Jameylee hails from there and she has released an album - her first, we believe, called Heirloom. It is clear from the song writing credits that she is positioning herself as a singer of songs rather than a writer of songs and she gives herself 13 tracks to prove it.
Starting with John Prine's "Angel from Montgomery" shows her class. This is one of those desert island songs at Bluesbunny Towers and one of the reviewers here even writes under the name of the Bluesbunny from Montgomery in honour of it. No disappointment with Jameylee's version either. She takes it slow and gentle with perfectly judged overtones of melancholy and sadness. Reinforcing her southern girl-next-door credentials is a respectful version of Lynyrd Skynyrd's classic "Simple Man". Showing yet more excellent taste, Stevie Nick's "Landslide" gets the Jameylee treatment with the subtle but effective fiddle work (by Elise Scarpetti) lifting the song right up to inspirational levels. Her vocals seem a bit strained when the tempo picks up - as in "Midnight Rider" - but the exemplary supporting musicianship carries the song through. Moving back to her strengths, she tackles another Lynyrd Skynyrd song ("Tuesday's Gone") in a delightfully wistful way. You can't do an album of country covers without a Dolly Parton song and the album closed with a rather staid version of "Jolene". Worthy but not really up to the standard of the rest of the album. However, Elise Scarpetti's fiddle work stands out once more and puts us back into a more forgiving mood. Whilst we understand commercial concerns, it would have been nice to hear Jameylee tackle some lesser known songs from the country/bluegrass/americana catalogue. There are undoubtedly many good songwriters out there who would benefit from an association with her.
Whilst this is not an album to change the world (as if there were such a thing …), there is a pleasing amount of sentiment on show here. Even better - and without any fuss or bother - that sentiment gets sent through the speakers to you. Maybe this Bluesbunny is getting old but listening to this album left a certain warm, fuzzy glow and also some unresolved feelings of affection for Jameylee. Wonder if she can cook? Available from CD Baby.
December 28, 2007
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