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Kenny Chesney: Just Who I Am: Poets & Pirates

B-

Kenny Chesney

Album: Just Who I Am: Poets & Pirates
Label: BNA

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For a relaxed singer with a fondness for steel drums and melodies reminiscent of Jimmy Buffett, Kenny Chesney sounds markedly moody on Just Who I Am: Poets & Pirates. The effect is, in part, a consequence of the country balladeer's lot, but Chesney always has an extra detail to drop, another tear to tweak. In "Don't Blink," a sad song about growing old turns sadder when Chesney invites listeners to imagine a time when "your better half of 50 years is there in bed… and you're praying God takes you instead." In "Dancin' For The Groceries," a young mother misses her kids, who are at home brushing their teeth before bed while she tries to buck up and strip for a living yet again. Such sentiment is more the rule than the exception on an album that proves surprisingly haunting.