Clear as Day
Looking at Scotty McCreery, American Idol's Season 10 winner, it seems impossible that such a rich, cavernous bass voice could reside in such a compact container. And such a young one at that: The 17-year-old Garner, N.C., high schooler sounds decades older than he is. Listen for 30 seconds or so, and you'd be forgiven for thinking Scotty's been hangin' out in honky-tonks for more years than he's been alive.
The lyrical content of his debut, however, perfectly matches his fresh-faced appearance. There are no world-weary songs of existential country angst here. No drinkin' one too many … or four too many. No fiendish exes stealin' trucks or basset hounds. Nope, there's none of that here. Instead, McCreery's all about the love—love for his mamma, love for girls who've stolen his heart, love of life and love for God.
Crude or Profane Language
Drug and Alcohol Content
Other Negative Elements
"Dirty Dishes" dishes out a tear-jerking tribute to a hardworking, prayerful mom. At dinner, she says, "I wanna thank you, Lord/For noisy children and slammin' doors/And clothes scattered all over the floor." Later, when her husband asks how she could be thankful for such mundane stuff, she replies, "Slamming doors just means we live in a warm and loving home/Your long hours and those dishes in the sink/Means a job and enough to eat." More tears are solicited when Scotty offers up a tribute to coming home to Mom's grounding influence. On "Back on the Ground," he sings, "Ain't it funny how it all comes back around/I remember when I couldn't wait to get out of her hair/And ditch this town/Now it's any reason to go back home/ … To get my feet back on the ground."
"That Old King James" tells the tender tale of a family Bible passed down from a grandfather to a mother to a son: "Now the cover's torn and the leather's worn on that old King James/You'll find on every other page/Yellow lines or tear-drop stains/Every chapter of that good book/Been through cancer/War and crazy kids/All the stupid things I did/I may never know the toll I took/On her and that old King James."
Lead single "I Love You This Big" and "Your Love Is Better Than That" are two of several sweet love songs. The latter looks forward to growing old with the love of your life, and it recalls how good life has been. "Out of Summertime" reminisces about a blossoming relationship. "The Trouble With Girls" ponders the wonder-filled mystery of a man's attraction to a woman.
"Water Tower Town" romanticizes the friendly virtues of small-town life. Likewise, "Walk in the Country" contrasts the constricting nature of the rat-race city life with a lung-fillin', soul-satisfyin' stroll down a dirt road.
On "The Trouble With Girls," a doorstep kiss may lead to more when a woman invites her man inside ("The way they give you a kiss at the front door/But leave you wishing you could have gone up/And just as you walk away/You hear that sweet voice say/Stay"). "Write My Number on Your Hand" tells us, "She climbed up an oak tree and double back flipped/The river drenched bikini sittin' pretty on her hips." "Out of Summertime" contains the line, "She was hot as July and sweet as sunshine."
I'd be hard-pressed to locate a sweeter country release this year. In his liner notes, Scotty McCreery quotes Philippians 4:13 ("I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me") and Jeremiah 29:11 ("For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future"). And his faith—which he's talked about unapologetically—is evident on several of his tracks.
The balance of Clear as Day is as bright and sunshiny as a warm spring day somewhere on a country road in North Carolina.