I need to start this review by asking my readers to forget everything I told you about how wonderful Joe Lasher Jr. is. Forget that you ever heard me rave about his vocal and instrumental talent. Don’t even think about the fact that I’ve already told you how well he works a stage, or how awesome he is with his audience. Just forget you ever heard that. Because today I listened to his new EP, Jack to Jesus, and, I am not going to be able to tell you how fantastic this EP is without using every adjective I’ve used to describe this young artist and his work before. It isn’t just fine wine and really good cheese that seem to get better with age – it is also Joe Lasher Jr.
When I first was introduced to Joe’s work, about eight months ago, I remember saying to myself “It doesn’t get any better than this.” I was wrong! It got better! I have one complaint about this 5-track EP. And, that is – it’s a 5-track EP. It isn’t enough. When it’s over, you have to play it again, because one thing Joe does better than most of our seasoned artists is this … He always leaves you wanting more!
There is not a song on this entire EP that isn’t radio-ready–NOW. It’s enough country to keep the older country fans (like me) happy; and, it’s enough of today’s country sound that it should be not only what our younger listeners what, but exactly what our program directors all across the nation want to give their listeners.
Did you ever listen to an EP that has a ‘little bit of everything’? Well, that’s what you are going to get with this one. There is a lot of country ballad, a little country/southern rock, and a tiny touch of country/rap. Enough of that to keep our fans of The Lacs and Colt Ford happy, but not so much that it made me dislike the song.
“Whiskey Nights” sits in the lead-off position. What a great start to what ends up being one of the best debut country releases to come along in a years! ‘Some nights are whiskey nights, you’d rather drink yourself blind than see the mess you’ve made…..some days are for getting it right, but some nights are whiskey nights.’ Memorable lyrics set to a slow-to mid tempo melody – you can’t help but fall in love with this song.
The second song you are going to hear is “Tap a Little Tail Light”. You already know I like this song. Recently we had an article posted to tell you all about Joe’s CD release party, which will be held Friday, March 18 at The Orange Peel in Asheville, N.C. When we posted that article, we included the lyric video for this song. If you watched that video, and listened to any of Joe’s music on his website – you already knew you were in for a treat when the CD was released. Again, we’re talking about today’s country music. When you hear Joe, you are hearing what you expect to find coming over the airways of today’s most popular country radio stations.
Joe Lasher Jr. is a name all country music fans are going to want to remember. He is an up and coming singer/songwriter who has undoubtedly found his place in the world of country music. He’s right where he belongs. “Somebody Up There Must Like Me” is the third song on the new EP. The story might remind you a little bit of Tracy Byrd’s “Keeper of the Stars,” just the idea that ‘someone had a hand in it, long before we knew’. But, the lyrics and the song Joe sings are definitely not the old Tracy Byrd song. They are all new, all uniquely Joe, and again – all today’s country. ‘Somebody up there must like me, to lead me to you’. Enough said about this one! It’s more of a ballad than the others. I can just picture people wanting to get out on the dance floor when he starts this one.
Now, while it would be impossible for me to pick a favorite out of the five songs here – I have a least favorite. That would be the fourth song, “Kickin’ Ass and Takin’ Names”. Now, it’s not the title, or or even the lyrics that turned me off a little. It was that small amount of rap at the opening of the song; and that more rockish sound that this one has. This is definitely a ‘pull this one out at the party’ song. And, I don’t doubt he will get one request after the next for this one at his live shows. I like it. I didn’t love it. But, I can definitely see a crowd dancing to it, singing with it, and just kickin’ up their heels to one heck of a good time. I know I have some readers who are going to run straight to track 4 when they get their copy of this CD. And, they are going to play this one more than once.
The last song you are going to hear is “Jack to Jesus”. This is what country music is all about, folks. This is a story. This one, more than the others, takes me back to MY era of country music. Back when it was really all about the story, and in many cases – all about the message. This song is about what happens ‘on the road from Jack to Jesus’. Wow, it’s a sad story. And yet, it’s a story that says “someone out there needs to hear this, so pay attention!’.
Nashville, pay attention to Joe Lasher Jr. Country radio, pay attention to Joe Lasher Jr.! His fans are noticing him! His fans are loving what they are hearing. And we, here at Country’s Chatter, think Nashville and country radio are going to notice, too.
In addition to Joe’s web site, I hope you will take a minute to visit his Facebook page, and please remember to ‘Like” it while you are there. Head over to YouTube and listen to some of his music. You can follow him on Twitter, @JoeLasherJr. If you aren’t already following Country’s Chatter on twitter,k we’d love to have you. You will find us @countryschatter.https://www.countryschatter.com/2016/03/cd-review-joe-lasher-jr/Concert InfoNew ArtistsNew ReleasesNewsReviewFacebok,Jack to Jesus,Joe Lasher Jr.,Kickin' Ass and takin' Names,orange peel,Somebody Up There Must Like Me,Twitter,Whiskey Nights