Back in 2016, I had made numerous statements about Aaron Watson becoming a name even listeners of mainstream country would know. While I’m sure others have said that before, as an outsider I watched for years at the growth of Aaron’s career and how his music can appeal to any true country lover. I was right, and have got my mom absolutely hooked on his music and he’s even on country radio here (My mom makes it a point to yell out to be every time he’s played LOL). I have that same belief with Jon Wolfe and his recent release Any Night in Texas is right on track to expand his audience.
When I first heard Jon Wolfe’s music, I observed the striking reassembles to George Strait’s voice. That deep country voice is just so refreshing and easy to listen to. His music dances the line of being Texas Country and the quality side of mainstream, which has been a large part of his ability to grow his fan base. He has penned songs such as I Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, that went on to be recorded by Joe Nichols. I was familiar with that song before I admittedly even knew who Wolfe was.
Leading up to the release of Any Night in Texas, Wolfe would do Facebook live videos and keep us all up-to-date with the album. He would take sometime to interact with fans and play us a new song off the album. When you listen to this album, you’ll likely notice some songs like Boots on a Dance Floor and Baby This and Baby That which certainly have a mainstream appeal. Don’t think for a second this is bro country however, it’s what mainstream country should be made of. Much like Wild as You by Cody Johnson and Outta Style by Aaron Watson, they are easy listening songs that most people can listen to and appreciate the country sound. I view them as songs that will first hook the listener and later open the door for further discovery into an artist’s music.
What would a country album be without the workin’ man’s anthem blasting at a show? A Country Boy’s Life Well Lived is EXACTLY how a song like this should be executed. You hear that? Yeah, that’s fiddle alright and I applaud Wolfe and crew for crafting this song the way they did. I get nervous when I see song titles like that, because it could easily turn into a beer drinking, hanging off a tailgate after 40 hours a week song. Rather when done correctly, it’s a fun upbeat song that every artist needs to have to perform. As someone in the audience, I want to hear a song like this to keep it light while I’m drinkin’ my adult beverage of choice.
Listener’s are also in for a treat with Drink for Two which features one of the most outstanding female talents in country music right now, Sunny Sweeney. It’s a mid tempo break-up song where the relationship is over Sunny’s warm voice beautifully contrasts Wolfe’s deeper vocals. With her gone, he has an excuse to drink and help cope with losing her. Jon said it was his first duet and I think they did a great job together on this track.
Any Night in Texas is now available so be sure to stream it and pick up a copy. I’m excited to add yet another Wolfe koozie to my collection along with an autographed CD. This album will stand as a moment in Jon Wolfe’s career where he begins to gain that momentum to continue right behind fellow Texas heavy hitters towards a mainstream break-through.
Just a Massachusetts guy supporting Texas and other independent country/Americana artists.
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