Picks and Pans Review: Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc.
Well, okay, so he did have to move to Los Angeles to discover his Kentucky roots. Singer-songwriter Dwight Yoakam, 29, couldn't sound more like an authentic honky-tonker if he had never left his ol' hometown of Pikeville, Ky. (pop. 5,500). His voice has a hint of Merle Haggard and a twangy touch of George Jones, but there's enough of an L.A. rock tinge to it to keep him from sounding derivative. Six of the 10 tracks on Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc. were released on a small label two years ago, and the four newer ones clearly have a fresher sound. Bury Me, a duet with Lone Justice's feisty Maria McKee, has a particularly vigorous style. The rest of the album mixes original tunes with such country standbys as Ring of Fire and Heartaches by the Number, providing a variety that allows Yoakam to demonstrate a sense of both history and enterprise. (Reprise)