When looking at the album cover of Jaydee Bixby’s first two albums, it’s easy to see why teenage girls became smitten with him when he was the runner-up Canadian Idol a few years ago. He’s has younger-than-he-is boyish good looks. Then you listen to him sing and it’s easy to compare him as the Canadian version of Blaine Larsen. He’s now 19 (almost 20) years old and for the most part he is singing songs that are age appropriate. Tom Cochran’s “Boy Inside The Man” is a good start for Bixby as he showcases his strong vocal – which falls somewhere between baritone and tenor. It was the first single from Easy To Love and it helped Jaydee get off to a good start with his new label On Ramp/EMI Canada.
“Closer Than You Think” is a power ballad that recalls Rascal Flatts while “Tailgate” is a alt-rock guitar and fiddle driven stadium ready tune that’s recalls Jason Aldean. “Tailgate” describes drinking and things of that nature and before people say ‘wait, he’s not old enough to drink,’ you must remember that in Canada, Jaydee Bixby is old enough to legally drink. A current radio hit on the Canadian charts, “Tailgate” could really be a hit in America, if not for Jaydee then for somebody else.
Jaydee co-wrote half of the album with “Always Love My Country” showcasing his ability to craft (with co-writers Jeff Dawson and Shaun Verreault) a tune that takes the “I’m Country” mantra in new and catchy way. Featuring a beautiful fiddle solo and a sweet melody, “Can’t Ask For More Than That” has the sound of something that could end up on country radio in the USA or be Jaydee’s true breakout hit. With sawin’ fiddles leading the way, Jaydee sings “That’s Never Stopped Me Before” as a bluesy country-rocker about not being denied what he wants to do in his life, a theme that comes up in the smalltown dreams of “Dream Bigger.”
With “It’s Over Now,” Jaydee Bixby ends his sophomore album on a traditionalist note with a George Strait-like ballad that truly showcases his vocal talent. While Jaydee Bixby may have to record some ‘tempo’ tunes to get onto mainstream radio, he’s actually much better when he sings a song that naturally suits his voice better. Jaydee Bixby may never become much of a big star in the USA but with the kind of true talent he showcases on Easy To Love, Jaydee should have no problem maintaining a successful career in his home country. After all, he’s off to a terrific start with his first two recordings.