Jeff Bridges | Jeff Bridges

Blue Note (2011)
By NICK A. ZAINO III  |  August 16, 2011
3.0 3.0 Stars


Jeff Bridges hit on a successful formula with the rich country sound of the Crazy Heart soundtrack, and he doesn't vary it much on his self-titled major-label debut. Bridges's longtime friend T Bone Burnett produced the album, and they dip into the same pool of songwriters from that soundtrack, covering Stephen Bruton, John Goodwin, and Greg Brown, with a couple of Bridges's own songs thrown in. Bruton's "What A Little Bit Of Love Can Do," on which Ryan Bingham sings backup, and Goodwin's "Maybe I Missed the Point" would have fit easily on the Crazy Heart soundtrack, sonically and thematically. The album is miles ahead of Bridges's indie debut, Be Here Soon, and pulls Bridges out of the "pretty good for an actor" category. There's a twang in his singing voice that may seem unnatural to those who know him primarily as The Dude, but it fits. And when he sings to the low end, Bridges has a gorgeous, resonant instrument, especially on "Slow Boat," which he co-wrote with Burnett and Thomas Cobb. Burnett brought in a lot of his regular players: Rosanne Cash's background vocals are a beautiful counterpoint, and guitarist Marc Ribot is particularly effective on Bridges's more ornate and less country-sounding originals. Bridges has talented friends and mentors who help bring out the best in him, which is surprisingly good.
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  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, Jeff Bridges, Jeff Bridges,  More more >
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