It’s been a bit of a rocky road from burgeoning young singer/songwriter to nationally-known country artist but through it all, Chris Janson has somehow persevered to the point where he’s one of country music’s most-exciting newcomers. This much is proven on the eleven tracks that make up Buy Me A Boat, Chris’ debut album with Warner Bros. Records.
The first two singles lead off the album and while both are very good songs, they aren’t the ones that best enhance the notion of how much talent Janson has as a country singer. “Holdin’ Her,” a song written with James Otto, is about his wife and how she changed his life for the better and eventually gave him a beautiful baby daughter too. It’s the kind of song country music has always excelled at and it’s joined by the rollicking, mile a minute country rocker “Back In My Drinkin’ Days” (also the only song on the album which showcases Janson’s expert harmonica skills) in showcasing both sides of Janson’s country star ability, an ability which blends traditions of the past along with the evolving sound of the present.
Those evolving sounds are heard in groove-filled mid tempos “Under The Sun,” “Save A Little Sugar” and the closing “White Trash.” Working with producers Brent Anderson and Chris DuBois for half of the album and Byron Gallimore for the other half, Janson’s personality is showcased quite nicely on Buy Me A Boat and the record also features a cool potential hit in “Messing With Jesus,” a steel-drenched tempo track featuring Tim McGraw as a duet partner. Everything here suggests an artist that can be a guy who takes the mantle from McGraw, Chensey, Shelton and Paisley to blend country’s past with country’s present and to join them all as a star in the country music world.