Crystal Bowersox - "Farmer's Daughter" - Preview Snippets

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Listen to snippets from Crystal Bowersox’s upcoming album, Farmer’s Daught4r at French Amazon.

The album drops on December 14.

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  • fadetowhite

    Sounds good – I like the snippets and might buy it.

  • Eileen99

    This is not the genre I listen to or buy, but the clips sound good for the style of music she’s aiming for. Still like Hold On the best, which sounds more HAC to me than the rest of the clips.

    If Jive is supposedly working both Farmer’s Daughter & Hold On to radio, it’s curious that WTMX in Chicago is playing FD (and not Hold On) occasionally on their new music hour. Where would Jive be marketing Hold On if it isn’t HAC? Maybe the WTMX PD just likes FD but of the two you’d think they’d be playing Hold On.

  • gangreen29

    I like the snippets but Crystal’s music is the type that you need to hear the whole song, you can tell from a clip of the chorus the quality so I’m anxious to hear the whole thing.

  • cristististi

    Listened to the snippets. I liked FD and HT only. I’ll buy those on itunes when it’s released. The rest just don’t float my boat. I hope her fans like it though.

  • luly

    Most song are not really my style, but I think that the album sounds good for it’s style.

  • lili_anne7

    I’m not a big country fan, so some songs just aren’t my style. But I did like FD and Holy Toledo, which is the first song I ever heard from Crystal. Mason is really nice too, Brian has a nice voice. Lonely Won’t Come Around could make a good single. I’ll check out the full stream.

  • kvwicks13

    Alot of the songs sounded the same to me. The songs are just not the style of music that I listen to. The only one I liked was For What its Worth.

  • steph6449

    Her voice sounds good in these.

    Going just by the samples available, I can see why Jive wanted Hold On as the single.

  • neartist

    From 7 on it is FANTASTIC!! On The Run and Kiss Ya kick ass! Speak Now, Mine all Mine and Mason sound very lovely. Will have to wait to hear the rest of Arlene but sounds good so far. Loved that it is stripped down! I am not a huge country fan but I am a huge Dixie Chicks fan. And I like the country flair on this CD. Could hear Natalie Maines rocking out on On The Run.

    Love about every live performance of RWTR but I think the recording has too much going on for my taste. Have to hear more of For What It’s Worth. Love FD of course. I think Holy Toledo has a bit too much too. Would have liked it better with some strings. Have to wait to hear more of Lonely too but it is okay.

    Hold On? Meh

  • artemis

    I really can’t tell much from the snippets, though I’ve already heard some of the full length songs, like FD. A lot of the songs sound country to me-I think Crystal should have signed with a country label-so many more country fans actually buy CDs, rather than ripping off music, and I think her songs would fit in that genre.
    I like Mine All Mine. It sounds like the kind of music guests sing on Prairie Home Companion, more of a sweet folk song.

  • lifeisgood

    IMO she sounds a bit like Jennifer Nettles (Sugarland) – I really like her voice. Most of the songs didn’t quite click with me but Crystal has a strong voice and a wonderful tone – just couldn’t get into the songs. Mason may be my favorite.

  • HermeticallySealed

    From what little we can hear of the snippets, only HO and KY really seem HAC ready, the others are a bit too slow or very heavy on the country sound. Could definitely see more airplay on country than anything, which isn’t a bad thing, really.

  • steph6449

    I don’t really get a country vibe from these.

  • Elliegrll

    If Jive is supposedly working both Farmer’s Daughter & Hold On to radio, it’s curious that WTMX in Chicago is playing FD (and not Hold On) occasionally on their new music hour. Where would Jive be marketing Hold On if it isn’t HAC? Maybe the WTMX PD just likes FD but of the two you’d think they’d be playing Hold On.

    I have a feeling that the decision to release both songs was made after Jive polled some PDs and were able to convince Crystal that most stations are not going to play FD. I would be very surprised if HO is not the one that gets the most spins and airplay.

  • Andy11

    I need Kiss Ya on my ipod like RIGHT NOW!

  • http://www.planetfierce.proboards.com/ CindyM

    Well, listened to the snippets and I have to say I’m disappointed. I still love Farmer’s Daughter and I think Mason sounds like it’s going to be good, but the rest sound so country to me. I was planning to buy the album, but now I may just cherry pick singles. Some of the snippets also sound muddled, her voice doesn’t sound as pure as I’d like. Will wait to hear the whole songs, though. Wonder when they’ll stream it??

  • Eriko

    I like the snippets but Crystal’s music is the type that you need to hear the whole song, you can tell from a clip of the chorus the quality so I’m anxious to hear the whole thing.

    Totally agree, my first thought when listening. I even felt the snippets where in the wrong places.

    On The Run and Kiss Ya kick ass!

    Agree, those 2 impacted me the most as a first impression, but could easily change when hearing the whole songs

  • ron54911

    I like Lonely Won’t Come Around, Farmer’s Daughter and Riding with the Radio. Those are the standouts for me. I’ll definately be buying the album. Some are a little busy, but there all Crystal!

  • vtu

    Can’t say I’m in love with this, though I like a lot of music in this genre. The melodies, from what little I’ve heard so far, just aren’t lovely enough to make me want to hum them or have them running on repeat in my head. The one exception for me was Speak Now, which I may pick up when the album is released.

  • smeggingnuts

    hmmmm
    She sounds good just not my kind of music…not a country fan and these just sound to country for me. She sounds good though her fans should be happy.

  • BootStar

    Only a couple of the songs sounded “country” to me. With the exception of the last three (which were may favorites based on the little bit I heard here), I thought the album had a heavy acoustic rock sound to it. As a whole, it’s is a lot more rock than I expected. Can’t wait to hear the full songs.

  • lili_anne7

    I think people who like country music and know something about it might not think the songs sound very “country”. But for people like me who don’t listen to country or don’t know much about it, that’s how we would probably describe Crystal’s music.

  • Dlynne

    She sounds like a country version of Alanis Morissette. Riding with the Radio even sounds a little bluegrass. After hearing the snippets, she really should have signed with a country label. Then she could crossover to HAC if she had a more rock sounding single at some point.

    I can understand why some say it doesn’t sound country to them because it’s not old-school country. However, she’s got a similar sound to most of today’s country artists with some rock overtones. I don’t see AAA stations playing her music at all.

  • anemicandholding

    For someone who claims to have gotten total creative control over this whole project, it appears that some of the original songs have been majorly messed around with – and not in a good way, either, IMO.

    IMO, FD is the worst candidate for a single on here. If Crystal had’t been so stubborn, she might have a better chance at radio. Right now it seems the options for her are pretty slim unless country picks her up.

  • http://crystalfans.com/ Zsus

    I really love what I’m hearing. Crystal has a troubador vibe to me – sort of Mary Chapin Carpenter meets Joan Osborne.

    I know she’s going to be a tough sell as she’s definitely not a pop princess like Katy or Rhianna. (How sad that she can outsing the pair of them.) But, I hope she finds a market, even if it’s a small one, that will sustain a career.

    Her album is on my Christmas list, so I’m going to have to be good and wait for it!

  • Q3

    Does not sound like any Country music that I know of — and certainly not like anything that is on current Country radio.

    I love Crystal’s voice a lot but the snippets of these songs all sound the same to me. And the production is stripped so bare that most of these songs don’t seem appropriate for radio to me. (Except HO which is kind of meh to me — but could get some HAC airplay.)

    When I found out she was covering “For What It’s Worth”, I was expecting/hoping it would be a bit like Ray LaMontagne. More of a blues influenced folk-rock — but I am disappointed to find it more like some kind of coffee house folk rock with no edge to it.

    I am puzzled about what market they are going to target with this. I will buy just the one track I really like, FD, and pass on the album unless the rest of the songs are dramatically more interesting than these snippets. But I will wait until I hear the whole album.

  • songsungblue

    I love the yearning in Holy Toledo and Arlene. Looking forward to hearing the whole stream.

  • Q3

    I can understand why some say it doesn’t sound country to them because it’s not old-school country. However, she’s got a similar sound to most of today’s country artists with some rock overtones. I don’t see AAA stations playing her music at all.

    It doesn’t sound like classic country, roots music or contemporary country music to me. I think it would mostly be classified as folk-rock — but that is not exactly the most commercially viable genre right now.

  • meyers77

    I was expecting/hoping it would be a bit like Ray LaMontagne. More of a blues influenced folk-rock

    That’s what I find this album to be like. From the snippets, it is even better than I expected. Can’t wait for 12/14.

  • Inconnu

    From a first listen, the ones that stood out are Speak Now, FD, Mine All Mine, Mason and Arlene (and I’ve heard previous versions of all of them except of course Arlene)

    I thought HO sounded very catchy which surprised me. I agree too that Riding with the Radio has a bit of bluegrass feel to it(with the Harmonica) and yes Arlene sounds very country (with a story to tell).

    I find On The Run and Kiss Ya to be lacking of melody on the previous versions I heard so not sure about those yet. It’s hard to judge from snippets.

    Not sure I like what she did with For What It’s Worth (didn’t really like it when she sang it Live at the Vineyard and it looks like that’s how she is interpreting it. She put a Blues/Funky vibe to it but I find that this is essentially a Classic Rock song and with her version, it’s hard to recognise the true melody of that song).

    Don’t like Lovely Won’t Come Around but I knew that already and my guess is that I will prefer her original version of Holy Toledo (more stripped down with her voice dominating the song).

    Will see. Too soon obviously to qualify the album but it’s 90% her songs and that alone is impressive. I just wish she wasn’t so cocky about it and let the music speaks for itself.

    ETA: After more listens, FD, Mine All Mine and Mason sound like the top ones for me. I’m anxious also to hear the full version of Kiss Ya.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    I’ll listen to Crystal’s entire album before I decide whether to buy it or not, but so far, a lot of the songs sound too countryish for my taste, especially RWTR. I prefer the folk style songs. Some songs seem to have very little production or background instrumentals, although it’s hard to tell from these short snippets. We’ll see.

  • smeggingnuts

    Dlynne
    She sounds like a country version of Alanis Morissette.

    Haha exactly I was discribing the sound to someone and that’s exactly the example I used.

  • bridgette12

    Hold on is the the best song she got on that album, the rest is just boring. Where exactly is she going to get airplay for these songs? Is this suppose to be a country album?

  • KL

    I’ve been a fan of Crystal’s original music since I first came across it on you-tube way back when. Most of the tracks on this album I have heard and fallen in love with in their original acoustic form. I also love the sound Crystal and David ( her producer ) have put together to record these songs. Unlike anything else out there. There is no need to limit it by confining it in some label structure….music is music. Some tunes you like some you don’t – you don’t really know why – bit like falling in love. The thing with labeling is that most people STOP listening.They never get past the label in their head – rock / country / reggae / hip-hop /classical or whatever…they like/dislike based on a label rather than reality. Crystal is as real as it gets and worth a listen without trying to put her music in a mental box.

  • Esqt

    Sounds country to me. Hard to explain but country has very distinctive beat/sound to the ears of someone who’s not a fan of country music. Since my ears are pre-programmed to like current sounding music, :wink: (thus my love for the majority of the top40s) AND singers w/ gorgeous vocals or nice tone (why I had some songs in languages I don’t understand in my ipod), from the snippets, Speak Now, Mine All Mine, Mason, Arlene, and Hold On stood out more to me. I’ve heard the full version of Hold On and it’s just an ‘ok’ song. The singer’s dislike of it is very transparent, like singing at gun point – lacks extra ‘umph’ for supposedly upbeat song. I might check out the other 4 tho. I prefer the mellow-sounding Crystal, not the angsty or shouty one.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    There is no need to limit it by confining it in some label structure….music is music. Some tunes you like some you don’t – you don’t really know why – bit like falling in love. The thing with labeling is that most people STOP listening.They never get past the label in their head – rock / country / reggae / hip-hop /classical or whatever…they like/dislike based on a label rather than reality. Crystal is as real as it gets and worth a listen without trying to put her music in a mental box.

    I disagree. I just like what I like, and don’t “stop listening” because of a “label”. Perhaps, if people “label” Crystal’s album as country, then maybe some people (who haven’t heard it) won’t give it a chance, but when I’m listening to the music, I just like it or not. I can’t tell very much from these snippets.

  • ladymadonna

    Hrrm. After several listens I’m conflicted. I’m reserving final judgement until I hear the full songs, though I’ve already pre-ordered Crystal’s album on the strength of her Idol performances and her pre-Idol material. Crystal was one of my all-time favorites contestants in all nine seasons of Idol. I’m still in love with her voice, dig her vibe, and think these are some very strong songs. But the fact that they are mostly years old and widely available on the Internet (not to mention staples on my iPod for almost a year) makes me yearn for a bit more progression from her.

    I’m also not sure that the intrumentation on many of the tracks really enhance the songs. I agree with those above that felt the snippets felt a bit samey. But that’s something that I really need to hear CD-quality audio and get a sense of how the full songs hang together as a cohesive record.

    All that being said, I think I will enjoy this album, and the number nerd in me is anxious to see how Farmer’s Daughter does on AAA – a small but interesting radio format that no Idol has ever really broken into.

  • CindyM

    fuzzywuzzy:
    12/04/2010 at 8:32 pm

    I disagree. I just like what I like, and don’t “stop listening” because of a “label”. Perhaps, if people “label” Crystal’s album as country, then maybe some people won’t give it a chance, but when I’m listening to the music, I just like it or not.

    You took the words right out of my mouth. I listened to the snippets more than once, all the way through each time. Farmer’s Daughter is still my favorite and one track I will definitely buy.

  • Valentin432

    I wonder how many people who say that it sounds country, really listen to country these days?

    But I understand because the problem is that it doesn’t sound like anything we hear on radio nowadays.

    For me, it’s the Folk/Rock, Americana, Roots rock kind of album that Crystal was always going to make. I like her voice and I will probably buy it.
    That’s more or less the same scenario I had with Brooke White who was only my 4th or 5th favorite on the show but whose album is easily one of the few I listen to post idol.

  • smeggingnuts

    I agree with fuzzywuzzy
    I like what I like or even though I’m not a fan of counrty I wouldn’t have a few country CD’s in my collection. Or Esqt said. Wouldn’t have some music from singers I have no clue what they are singing because its in a foreign language.

    I will listen again when I can hear the whole songs because snippets just don’t do any song justice. But right now all I hear is country with nothing elese that drabs ahold of my eardrums and says “wow listen to that”

  • steph6449

    I can understand why some say it doesn’t sound country to them because it’s not old-school country. However, she’s got a similar sound to most of today’s country artists with some rock overtones. I don’t see AAA stations playing her music at all.

    I listen to a lot of country music. Not too many current names of country artists are coming to mind with this type of sound or songs, especially a full album’s worth of it. (Ok, none, lol.)

    I agree with the comment it’s more folk rock or acoustic soft rock.

  • Eriko

    David Bendeth the producer calls her music “Americana”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Americana_%28music%29

  • Elliegrll

    I can understand why some say it doesn’t sound country to them because it’s not old-school country. However, she’s got a similar sound to most of today’s country artists with some rock overtones. I don’t see AAA stations playing her music at all.

    I’d say that it the other way around. Her songs are more folk than country, but a lot of what’s currently popular on country radio is either pop/country or rock/country. The more folk type country music hasn’t been popular for decades.

    “Americana”

    That’s a good label for it.

  • steph6449
    “Americana”

    That’s a good label for it.

    Isn’t that another way of saying folk?

  • Dlynne

    It doesn’t sound like classic country, roots music or contemporary country music to me. I think it would mostly be classified as folk-rock — but that is not exactly the most commercially viable genre right now.

    I’ll split the difference with you. Her vocals sound folk/rock and the instrumentals sound country to my ears. It’s a weird mix. I’m not the only one who thinks some of the music has country leanings. Crystal said early on that she thought she should be marketed to country. And in an interview I read recently, she said some of the songs were more country. I’d say at least half of them are.

    FWIW, I’m a fan of country music. I’m just not digging this that much. I want to like it. Does that count?

    I only label music insofar as it relates to radio play. I like what I like and I don’t care what genre it falls into. I don’t discriminate. :wink:

  • Eriko

    Isn’t that another way of saying folk?

    Not according to the link I provided

    “Americana is an amalgam of roots musics formed by the confluence of the shared and varied traditions that make up the American musical ethos; specifically those sounds that are merged from folk, country, rhythm & blues, rock & roll and other external influential styles.[1] Americana is popularly referred to, especially in print, as alternative country, alt-country or sometimes alt.country.”

  • CindyM

    The more folk type country music hasn’t been popular for decades.

    That’s probably it. It reminds me of the country music my mom used to listen to around the house all the time. I’d love it if the songs seemed to have more of the Farmer’s Daughter type of vibe, but I don’t hear that so often in the snippets. The full song stream may change my mind, we’ll see.

  • Eriko

    FWIW, I’m a fan of country music. I’m just not digging this that much. I want to like it. Does that count?

    “A” for effort :)

  • smeggingnuts

    Well it seems to me whether you lable her country or not. To some people who don’t listen to a lot or any country seem to think the albums sounds country. Its just an observation not an accusation. I think its just something to be prepaired for. To people who haven’t been listening to these songs for the last 10 months (since they are old songs of hers mostly and are all over YT) or listen to country they just might think it sounds that way.

  • http://idolstages.com Connie D.

    Ok, I think it is a country record, and a good one. However, Crystal couldn’t sign with a country label because of her dreads, and attitude/personality.

  • ladymadonna

    I would agree with Bendeth’s label of Americana, if a label is required. That’s why I maintain a bit of hope that she may get some AAA airplay. Her sound would definitely fit into the playlist at my local triple-A, 93.3 KGSR, – there’s a lot of Americana and folk-influence in the Austin music scene. But as much as the style may fit, it remains to be seen if a station like KGSR would be open to an Idol in their playlist. I’d love to see it but I have my doubts.

  • Dlynne

    Well it seems to me whether you lable her country or not. To some people who don’t listen to a lot or any country seem to think the albums sounds country. Its just an observation not an accusation. I think its just something to be prepaired for. To people who haven’t been listening to these songs for the last 10 months (since they are old songs of hers mostly and are all over YT) or listen to country they just might think it sounds that way.

    I was just going to say this. But you said it so much better than I would have. Most people don’t really know the difference between folk and country so they will simply call it country. And that’s not a bad thing…for me anyway.

  • steph6449

    Crystal said early on that she thought she should be marketed to country. And in an interview I read recently, she said some of the songs were more country. I’d say at least half of them are.

    From a sales standpoint, I can see why this might have some appeal for her and her team. She’ll get a lot better placement in stores/etc if it’s marketed as “country” than folk.

    I don’t think it would be considered country for purposes of mainstream country radio or other country outlets though. Which doesn’t seem the direction she and her team are going anyway if she’s being exposed mostly to AAA and HAC formats from what I’ve heard so far.

  • abbysee

    I never buy or judge a cd based on snippets. Just not enough information for me. I also don’t buy based on genre. It’s too limiting. If I like it I don’t care whether it’s rap, rock, pop, jazz, even country. I love Crystal’s voice, so I am gonna buy the cd, period. Don’t care if AAA or Top 40, or country radio play her music because I am a strictly in the car radio listener, so I would probably not hear her anyway…..

  • MrDuffin

    I’m not real sure what is the need to put Crystal’s music in a category. Country music today is not what I consider country music. Country music today also sounds alike and is boring to me. And as far as the radio…I listen to old rock and beach music stations so I doubt if I will ever hear Crystal on the radio. She will do fine because she is good….not from what radio station she is heard on and what category folks try to put her in. YOMV

  • readon

    From the snippets, It had a Sugarland kind of sound, as someone posted earlier. I love Sugarland. It is not a bad thing to be ocmpared to them and they are country.

    When I hear soemthing labeled “folk”, it takes me back to my sitting aroung the campfire singing Kumbaya, and Where have all the flowers gone(or somehing like that). IMO, if you want to put a label on this album that will damn it to hell, then folk just might do it.

    ETA: My love of Sugarland does not extend to whatever that crap was that I saw on VH1 this morning.

  • shell29

    I wonder how many people who say that it sounds country, really listen to country these days?

    While I’m not a fan of the genre (and certainly won’t go out of my way to seek it out), I’ve heard quite a bit of contemporary country music. I won’t claim to be an expert on what truly sounds “country”, but a few of those snippets (at least to my ears) seem to have a country “flavor” to me. That said, I don’t really see Crystal as a country artist and I have my doubts about the country establishment being accepting of her image(especially with the dreads). I don’t know if country radio would be willing to play her music for that reason.

    Back to the snippets: I’m going to reserve judgement until I hear the tracks in their entirety. So far I love Holy Toledo and I’m in the minority that actually likes Hold On. I know Crystal doesn’t like it, but she sounds good on that track and I still think it has hit potential.

  • shlitzy

    I think a lot of the radio experts here are really speaking out of their ass. Triple A and HAC an top 40 blah blah. Two of the biggest sellers right now are Jackie Evancho and Susan Boyle. Neither has any radio at all, in fact SuBoyle sold 2 million records last xmas based on a youtube video! So my question is people that bought those records obviously found out about them somewhere, they are both sensations and both have great voices. The power of video and the internet are huge drivers for record sales.There are tons of artists that sell a lot of records that don’t bow down to radio. Look at Allison Krauss, Norah Jones I could go on. Radio is a dying format, I know you need it if you are Adam Lambert or Daughtry, but it is not the be all of buyers.
    What Crystal needs is a great tour, a great video and amazing promotion with tie ins like starbucks etc. TV advertising would certainly help too. Putting music in shoe boxes is the reason the business is in the tolilet and radio plays crap all day.

  • Studio57

    If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it’s country

  • steph6449

    If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it’s country

    Ducks don’t sing folk or rock? :)

  • shlitzy

    So what is a Coldplay? a rock band or a pop group? hahaha

  • readon

    Ducks don’t sing folk or rock?

    Nope, they sing Old Mcdonald had a farm and that’s country.

  • shell29

    Two of the biggest sellers right now are Jackie Evancho and Susan Boyle. Neither has any radio at all, in fact SuBoyle sold 2 million records last xmas based on a youtube video!

    They are the exceptions to the rule. Yes, there are other means of getting exposure for your music but if anyone thinks Crystal Bowersox is going to sell like Jackie Evancho and Susan Boyle with minimal radio airplay they are kidding themselves.

  • shlitzy

    Radio is for Lady Gaga,Katy Perry, Rihanna, Pink and Beyonce.
    Now imagine Crystal singing any of their hits, go ahead.

  • http://twitter.com/kenostroff negativo

    I mostly like what I hear, but if I have one complaint it’s with David Bendeth. He simply was not the right choice to handle the studio mix of this album. Crystal is a folk rock artist, not a country rocker, and her greatest strength is authentic acoustic purity of sound.

    Bendeth just overproduced way too much of this album. He lacks the necessary finesse, and is really not qualified to produce the type of album that best refects Crystal’s talent. Her live performances far exceed Bendeth’s hack job in the studio.

    Sad when a great artist is held back by a mediocre producer, but such is life. I’m still buying the album, but I’m even more looking forward to seeing her perform live.

  • readon

    Radio is for Lady Gaga,Katy Perry, Rihanna, Pink and Beyonce.
    Now imagine Crystal singing any of their hits, go ahead.

    And radio is for Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts, Keith Urban, Kenny Chesney, etc. You mentioned CHR artists, but there are other other formats on radio.

    To clarify, her album sounds more country than alternative or AAA. That is not a bad thing. I think this album could be huge. I mean like Miranda Lambert huge, who is probably going to kick some Carrie butt at the Grammys.

  • steph6449

    Nope, they sing Old Mcdonald had a farm and that’s country.

    Hmm. That’s an interesting genre question. Children’s songs are what genre, lol.

  • shlitzy

    Well let us assume that she is a country artist for a minute. Maybe someone should tell the label that. Maybe Underwood will like it and take her on tour!

  • smeggingnuts

    Hmm. That’s an interesting genre question. Children’s songs are what genre, lol.

    Children’s songs = Children’s stories = Folk stories = Folk music ;)

  • readon

    Nope, they sing Old Mcdonald had a farm and that’s country.

    Hmm. That’s an interesting genre question. Children’s songs are what genre, lol.

    I should have put a smiley at the end of my post, but I am kinda rusty at posting here and didn’t remember how to do it.

    Snark aside, I like Crystal and want her to be sucessful. At this point, I just don’t think that current marketing will acheive that. She has a good product, but she ain’t Subo or Janet Evanovich. Those two are savants of some sort. I don’t think that Crystal evokes the same response in the public that those two do, so she is going to need a platform for exposure and that is radio.

  • tierbee

    I’m looking forward to hearing the whole thing… snippets don’t tell the whole story, at all, so can’t wait to hear the full songs.

  • Elliegrll

    Two of the biggest sellers right now are Jackie Evancho and Susan Boyle. Neither has any radio at all, in fact SuBoyle sold 2 million records last xmas based on a youtube video!

    In the cases of Susan and Jackie their albums are selling based on the strength of their backstories, or at the very least, their marketing and promotion has been more about who they are, than what they are singing. The main thing that people know about Crystal is that she was on a reality show, and that little fact isn’t going to get her any attention from those who like her type of music, and who believe that anyone from AI is not a real artist.

  • steph6449

    Children’s songs = Children’s stories = Folk stories = Folk music ;)

    I tend to agree. I’ll tell that to the ducks in my backyard next time I catch them walking and quacking and singing “Old MacDonald has a farm” :)

    I think Crystal is basically folk-oriented, in both musical style and point of view. Not sure how commercial that is for radio in any format, but agree there should be some niche where she can establish herself. I don’t see how the songs I heard in those snippets would let her have a breakout monster CD, although I suppose stranger things have happened.

    Whether I love everything she’s done post-AI or not, she does have a good voice so I hope something works for her well enough to keep going. I have modest expectations for her, however.

  • shlitzy

    The back story on a lot of artists is more about who they are as opposed to what they sing. But who is buying? The older demographic, and the older demo does not listen to the radio or cruise youtube, they watch TV. These millions of people are not people that buy Katie Perry records. Radio has also been proven to not sell records as well. There are many artists getting thousands of spins that cannot give their records away. Radio does not equal sales, Just spins

  • fictitiousreality

    I like the fact that this record throws off everybody trying to figure out which genre it is lol. its a collection of different styles really and there is no sound which dominates any particular one. I also like the fact that this has remained true to crystal’s vision which was to make a genre-free record with good music in it and I think she has achieved that (although we still need to hear the full version I am liking what I hear so far).

    Its like what david bendeth described a smorgasbord or variety for everyone really. I think they are clever in putting lots of variety in the record, now theres a pick for every type of radio or listener who wants to listen to it.

    What amazes me even more is the arrangement of the track listing. For people who like different styles of music like me, they can really play the whole album from start to end and its never gonna be boring, its like my own personal playlist. Also the order of the track listing were well thought off. It starts with a bang and then follows through while maintaining consistency in each genre, with lesser production as it goes down until finally we hear the stripped down and acoustic Crystal and Frankie which we, the fans fell in love for :)

    Favorite snippets: OTR, FWIW, Arlene, KY, Speak Now & Mason.

  • Studio57

    The reason why Jackie and SuBo are so huge is because the shows they were on don’t have a habit of pulling videos off youtube for copyright infringement. Both of them went viral for that reason alone. And because of that they had tremendous buzz. AI is so stupid for pulling performance videos. It doesn’t give them an unfair advantage in the competition- neither Subo or Jackie won their seasons.

    As for Crystal- you can call it folk or Americana or whatever, but her career would do much better if ya called it country. justsayin.

  • sr4mjc

    I like Hold On the best, sue me.

  • HermeticallySealed

    It reminds me of the country music my mom used to listen to around the house all the time.

    Yeah, for me this is it. She doesn’t sound like contemporary country, so much as what my father and grandfather used to listen to back when I was a kid, many, many years ago.

  • smeggingnuts

    I’ll tell that to the ducks in my backyard next time I catch them walking and quacking and singing “Old MacDonald has a farm”

    Haha mine sing Disco ;)
    “Disco disco duck…..”

  • shlitzy

    I live down south and I gotta tell you, I haven’t heard any country music like that round these parts. It ain’t exactly Reba or Carrie is it?

  • http://twitter.com/kenostroff negativo

    I think FWIW is the worst snippet of the bunch. Way, way, way overproduced by Bendeth, who was clearly out of his league with this album. Crystal sounds great in spite of him, not because of him.

  • mozart4898

    I’m going to have to listen to the clips again in a bit, was trying to listen with like 2-3 other things playing in the background and so I didn’t get a really good listen to it yet. But from what I heard, it sounds very much like what I expected, which was good.

    I’m not a country music fanatic, but I do like country. I agree with those who have said that it doesn’t sound contemporary country – but it does have more of an “old school” country sound IMO. As expected, some rock sound to it too. I’ll have to hear more to really decide whether it sounds “overproduced,” but really, unless she does a live album, it’s going to have at least some production (and even a live album will have production, it won’t just be two mics set up in the audience). I think a big part of what’s getting people is that they’re used to hearing these songs with maybe 2 instruments + voice, and we’re hearing a couple added instruments (drums especially).

    Do I think Crystal’s music sounds like it has wide radio appeal? Maybe not, but then again, it might. HO has a radio sound given the songwriting pedigree, but I really think that Speak Now, On the Run, Kiss Ya, Lonely, and Riding with the Radio all have a radio sound as well. Said it before and I’ll say again, I do really like FD but I don’t think it’s anywhere near the most radio-worthy song she has. I could honestly see Kiss Ya on HAC or even CHR – of course I’m far from a typical radio listener but I think it’d work on their playlists. I’ll have to reserve final judgment until I hear the whole song but I’m thinking that really should be a single.

  • mozart4898

    I think FWIW is the worst snippet of the bunch. Way, way, way overproduced by Bendeth, who was clearly out of his league with this album. Crystal sounds great in spite of him, not because of him.

    We’ll probably disagree, but from what I heard in the clip and what I’d heard of her at the vineyard performance, I just plain don’t think I like her version of it. I might have a different opinion when I hear the whole thing but I’m thinking I don’t like how she’s done the song – nothing to do with the production IMO. YMMV.

  • readon

    Haha mine sing Disco
    “Disco disco duck…..”

    You might want to check the feed. LOL

    Have your ducks been to Amsterdam lately?

  • http://twitter.com/kenostroff negativo

    Have a merry little Christmas from Mama: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWcJOGfCHOo

  • mozart4898

    Radio is for Lady Gaga,Katy Perry, Rihanna, Pink and Beyonce.
    Now imagine Crystal singing any of their hits, go ahead.

    I was on board with the idea of Crystal singing Bad Romance during the season (I don’t remember where the idea ever came about though) – I honestly think she’d knock it outta the park. I could also hear her doing Firework or Raise Your Glass – truthfully I think you picked several people whose songs Crystal could cover pretty easily with just a touch of creativity. On the other hand, I couldn’t hear her doing Single Ladies, lol. Or for that matter, anything by Ke$ha.

    Now, am I saying she should do those songs, or ones like them? No…it’s not her. But I think she could.

  • Jae

    OMG. This i ssooo country! Not even folk rock. Its country. If Crystal goes the Carrie route, she might do ok. I won’t be buying this CD, not at all my style. But she represented her self pretty much as she did on Idol.

  • movin2thabeet

    From listening to the snippets, it sounds like old club folk/rock music from 25-35 years ago. It might get some AAA play and the obligatory spins from Idol-friendly stations, but it sure sounds like its heading in the direction of small niche music, something Crystal might be perfectly happy with.

  • http://twitter.com/kenostroff negativo

    Crystal really should have made an album that’s Top 40 and CHR/HAC friendly. You know, like Lee did.

    Yeah, that’s the ticket.

  • Listening

    Well have to say I immediately thought Country when I heard it.I found the snippets more country than Carrie’s music. Yeah I’ll concede there are a couple of more pop-ish songs but then carrie usually sprinkles her albums w/ pop-like songs Before he cheats and undo it and she’s still country. Just b/c it’s likely the country industry might not accept Crystal b/c of her values and outspokenness doesn’t change she sings in their genre.It’s totally country it’s got the feel,the instruments,the tone,the messages. I mean what else makes country country than that.

  • cookcricket

    I’d say Crystal’s songs may lean toward Americana, but the production doesn’t based on these snippets. That’s my 2 cents. I still like it, but sadly we’re talking an idol album here and I believe Bendeth has smoothed it out a little too much.

    I am looking forward to hearing the entire album streamed and hope it happens before the 14th, however, I plan to pre-order on itunes it either way, just because I like the idea of an extra song.

    I believe we’ll hear more of the nuances of each song when they’re played in their entirety.

    Probably the best Americana music can by found on NPR or in concert. I believe Crystal can and will bring this aspect live.

  • plays strings

    I’ve been listening to her songs for a year now and have come to really love some of the original recordings. Kind of like classic Crystal. So, it is hard to hear some of these because they do sound over-produced by comparison. We need to hear the entire songs and let them kind of roll around in our heads for awhile.

    I was looking forward to FWIW, I hope the track gets better. I’m wondering now if it was a good idea. The words may be timeless, but, the song/music was iconic in it’s original form.

    What’s with the country singing ducks and the like. I think some of you have gone quackers. You know, some of us don’t care if your not buying her album because it sounds country, or it’s just not you’re kind of music. So, I wonder about your motivation for letting us know that?

    It still sounds like Crystal and some of us like that regardless of the label you put on it. It’s good music.

  • http://twitter.com/kenostroff negativo

    I still like it, but sadly we’re talking an idol album here and I believe Bendeth has smoothed it out a little too much.

    Bendeth would do much better with a Ke$ha or a Swift, because he obviously is inadequate at producing an album for a top quality acoustic singer/songwriter. He’s simply amateurish, and needs a performer with limited skills that he can enhance with his background production noise.

    Bad match, but fortunately for him Crystal’s talent can overcome much of his shortcomings.

  • Inconnu

    plays strings:
    12/05/2010 at 12:23 am
    I’ve been listening to her songs for a year now and have come to really love some of the original recordings. Kind of like classic Crystal. So, it is hard to hear some of these because they do sound over-produced by comparison. We need to hear the entire songs and let them kind of roll around in our heads for awhile.

    Well, I dunno…. Take Riding with the Radio for example. There is a version on YT: Live at KFOG that is just excellent and I doubt very much that I will prefer the one on the album – which really sounds way too busy. Way too much background music for my taste.

    Another one: Holy Toledo. The beauty of that song is the pure melody and her voice. The snippet of it makes it sound like a very boring song…

    Hearing the clips in succession even made Hold On stood out

    It looks though that they did an excellent job with Mason and with Mine All Mine…

    We’ll see…but it looks like slim pickings right now for me.

  • smeggingnuts

    What’s with the country singing ducks and the like. I think some of you have gone quackers. You know, some of us don’t care if your not buying her album because it sounds country, or it’s just not you’re kind of music. So, I wonder about your motivation for letting us know that? It still sounds like Crystal and some of us like that regardless of the label you put on it. It’s good music.

    Well I was listening because I was curious what she has done. I don’t follow her but I think she has a good voice. And thought I would see if I was going to maybe get her CD. I then gave my opinion about what I heard. Which is kinda the point of MJ’s to share idol stuff and comment.

    And I don’t belive one person here said (reguardless if they thought the music sounds country or not) said it was bad music. Not one person.

  • mozart4898

    Well I listened to the clips again now that I’m not dealing with all the background noise, and really, my angst about the album is gone. Are there a few songs I question hearing the clips? Yeah. I really don’t think I’m going to be too thrilled with FWIW, and honestly the one song to me that still sounds overproduced given its message, and in comparison to the rest of the album, is FD. Those who think Holy Toledo sounds too busy would have hated it live, lol – it was twice this busy, background singers and all. I think it sounds fantastic. Really, other than FWIW and FD, I don’t have any complaints about what I hear – Hold On will probably even grow on me over time (full disclosure, I own 3 Nickelback albums so I guess I’m somewhat predisposed).

    I agree with whoever it was that said from about track 7 on, holy shit. Love, love, love it. Kiss Ya needs to be on the radio right now – hell with Pink and Katy Perry. And that first phrase of Mine All Mine that you hear in the clip, her voice sends shivers down my spine. Mason is that sorta song you hear on the radio in the background at your dentist, lol…definitely not the “best” song on the album but I mean, it’s just so “perfect” sounding. And how in the hell can Crystal almost make me cry in just a 15 second clip with Arlene? Love the guitar, the melody, just the whole vibe of it. And it’s one of the few songs on the album that I haven’t heard completely in some form or another already so that’s an added bonus. I hope the iTunes bonus track (Finally Got It Right) is done in a similar way. Yeah, after all my talk of not pre-ordering and not buying digitally, I did both a while back, when I saw word of the bonus track.

    I’m gonna be playing this on my iPod a lot. A lot. Of course I doubt anyone is that surprised, lol.

  • Brian_C82

    I think the rusty old toilet on the cover of Farmers Daughter sums it up perfectly. If you’re the type of person who would leave a rusty old toilet in your front yard, you might enjoy FD. The rest of us would rather flush it away.

  • http://twitter.com/kenostroff negativo

    And how in the hell can Crystal almost make me cry in just a 15 second clip with Arlene?

    Simple, it’s apparently the one song on the album Bendeth kept his overproduced, hack-job hands away from. It’s pure Mama.

  • twinkle80

    It still sounds like Crystal and some of us like that regardless of the label you put on it. It’s good music.

    i just heard the snippets. sorry if you guys feel that some of the posts seem like a diss on her. i think that maybe people are trying to say what they think of them the best way they know how? i mean, just hearing the instrumentation & stuff on the songs, as well as crystal’s way of singing, i immediately thought country/folk maybe a bit of rock. i don’t think anyone’s saying it is bad, it’s just how they perceive it. i think what’s important is that these people are giving her songs a listen & who knows maybe will buy some or all of her songs :)

    Hearing the clips in succession even made Hold On stood out

    lol, it stood out for me too! how funny is that? maybe because it also reminds me of kelly clarkson or just the type of songs that i listen to. also liked HT since i heard it on AI. the rest? maybe i should hear the entire songs.

  • mozart4898

    I think the rusty old toilet on the cover of Farmers Daughter sums it up perfectly. If you’re the type of person who would leave a rusty old toilet in your front yard, you might like FD. The rest of us would rather flush it away.

    Well, you did probably just describe fully 1/3 of the population of the country that lives between the east and west coasts…lol. I personally drove a Bondo and primered 10 year old conversion mini van my senior year of high school as my first car, and would have kept it for many years until it got wrecked. A friend of mine had a Ford tractor blue painted pickup truck that was dual fueled – he rigged it himself to run off propane as well as regular gas. Oh, and did I mention that I actually know where Elliston is? ;-) I guess you could say that I “get” her, lol.

  • girlygirl

    Crystal isn’t mainstream country, but she could fall into the genre called alt-country. A lot of musicians who are considered alt-country have elements of folk, rock, blues and/or bluegrass in their music.

  • mozart4898

    Crystal isn’t mainstream country, but she could fall into the genre called alt-country. A lot of musicians who are considered alt-country have elements of folk, rock, blues and/or bluegrass in their music.

    This has been tossed around before – the “alt-country” label – but where exactly do you hear those sorts? I guess you could say that you don’t typically hear them unless you just happen to discover them and buy their albums, and Crystal will probably stand to do better than most typical “alt-country” artists given the exposure she’s had. If such artists do actually get played on AAA radio, someone needs to start a AAA station in the Toledo, Ohio area because I imagine there’s plenty of people around here that would love such a station, and I’m not just saying that because it’s where Crystal’s from.

    Nowadays though, I really think labels mean less and less. If you search for someone’s music online, you don’t need to know their genre, and if you go into a store that actually has enough selection to have more than just top 40, R&B, and country, you probably know whose album you’re looking for and you only have to ask – or search on a computer in there since many of their catalogs are computerized.

  • Q3

    When I hear soemthing labeled “folk”, it takes me back to my sitting aroung the campfire singing Kumbaya, and Where have all the flowers gone(or somehing like that). IMO, if you want to put a label on this album that will damn it to hell, then folk just might do it.

    There are a number of successful contemporary folk-rock artists. And “Beg Steal Or Borrow” Ray LaMontagne And The Pariah Dogs got nominated for the Grammy song of the Year — and Mumford & Sons are folk rock — so someone likes folk rock and it has a market — a large and growing market.

    Regarding calling this music “Americana” — I do not think that is an appropriate label. I listen to a lot of Americana and actively support many of these artists, but it has little to do with Crystal’s music. American is a very low sales, niche genre — so I do not think that is a good marketing label. And the label matters because it is where her music will be marketed. It appears that Jive is listing Crystal as Pop/Rock and that her CD will be merchandised in the Pop section of traditional and online stores.

    Here is a good article on the Americana Music movement: http://www.nashvillescene.com/nashville/as-americanas-identity-takes-shape-andmdash-and-boosts-sales-andmdash-the-fledgling-genre-revels-in-its-new-momentum/Content?oid=1798562

    Still hoping that I like the album more than these snippets.

  • Q3

    This has been tossed around before – the “alt-country” label – but where exactly do you hear those sorts?

    At festivals and small clubs.

    Most of the Alt Country artist have a punk or gothic edge to their music — I do not here that in these clips. Here is a really nicely done guide to Alt Country artists –
    http://www.slipcue.com/music/country/countrystyles/alt/A_01.html

    Nowadays though, I really think labels mean less and less. If you search for someone’s music online, you don’t need to know their genre, and if you go into a store that actually has enough selection to have more than just top 40, R&B, and country, you probably know whose album you’re looking for and you only have to ask – or search on a computer in there since many of their catalogs are computerized.

    Major labels matter. Major labels are responsible for almost 80% of the recorded music sales revenue in the world. Universal is 33% market share, Sony 29% market share — so two companies control 62% of the world’s recorded music sales.

    In the US, most music is sold in self-service retail formats. The customer has to be about to way-find without assistance because there will most likely not be any. It is iTunes, Walmart, Amazon, Best Buy and Target. B&N, Borders and Music Stores are <5% of US music sales now and dropping rapidly.

  • revolution

    Another place to listen to the snippets, without having to click through. http://bit.ly/hZ1XY4

  • Inconnu

    revolution:
    12/05/2010 at 1:28 am
    Another place to listen to the snippets, without having to click through. http://bit.ly/hZ1XY4

    Well done! Thanks!

  • istersay

    David Bendeth:

    “Internet is just low quality, all good. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streaming_media” 23 minutes ago via web

    “Thank you Crystal fans for all the kind words, you will like full versions better. Crystal is an amazing artist, just wait.” 41 minutes ago via web

  • Indigobunting

    I thought her voice sounded very nice.

    I can see where some think it sounds country because she gets kind of “drawly” (almost a little too much,hard to understand some words in spots) which maybe could be confused with a twang.

    It seems like folk-rock to me. The stuff you heard in the early 70′s/late 60′s. Reminded me of Etheridge/Morissette with a strong folk vibe. Or even softer Janis Joplin. Too folky for Sugarland too, IMO, Jennifer Nettles has way more of a Diva voice and harder rock edge.

    Most of the Alt Country artist have a punk or gothic edge to their music

    The alt-country confused me too; my biz partner is heavily into alt-country, which she describes as punk country or bluegrass country punk, lol. I didn’t get that at all from this.

    ]’m a newbie to country, but with my limited country listening, it did seem folk, not country.

    I agree with others that the small snippets weren’t really enough to get a feel for the album.

  • JudyOhio

    abbysee:
    12/04/2010 at 9:28 pm
    I never buy or judge a cd based on snippets. Just not enough information for me. I also don’t buy based on genre. It’s too limiting. If I like it I don’t care whether it’s rap, rock, pop, jazz, even country. I love Crystal’s voice, so I am gonna buy the cd, period. Don’t care if AAA or Top 40, or country radio play her music because I am a strictly in the car radio listener, so I would probably not hear her anyway…..

    That pretty much sums it up for me too! I REALLY disliked AI9 for the most part, so have only VERY casually followed this batch of kids. But recently, Crystal’s sound and style (musically) appeals to me (and I’m not sure why exactly).

  • shlitzy

    If you have elements of folk, country and rock and you think of other artists doing that right now, there are not many. This makes her very different from everyone else. That only has to be a good thing as it becomes about the artist and not just the song. She wrote most of these songs which makes it a very individual effort

  • MonochromaticFriend

    I just listened to the snippets. Just an opinion, but I have no idea why Jive is running with either HO or FD. Lonely Won’t Come Around sounds like their best chance for a radio hit that can sell the record, rather than selling the song. Maybe I’m just enchanted by the whistling and melody on the chorus. HO is a good song, but it does sound like a KC knock-off, and I don’t think CB’s voice sounds particularly special on it (not a knock against her voice, or the production, just the fit of the voice with the song).

    The melodies sound great, Crystal sounds great. The only thing I would say is that I do think some kind of different production on CB’s voice would have made it “pop” a little bit more. I had the same beef with Kris Allen’s album actually. They both have beautiful voices that might benefit from more of a “live” feel to vocal. Still, it’s an internet version, so the actual recordings are likely going to sound better.

    Loved what Crystal did to FWIW, FWIW. :) Holy Toledo was another standout. Really like what I heard of Arlene as well.

  • girlygirl

    Punk or gothic edge? LOL — when I say alt-country, think Ryan Adams or Wilco — musicians like that…

  • mozart4898

    Major labels matter. Major labels are responsible for almost 80% of the recorded music sales revenue in the world.

    Ehh I picked the wrong word. I meant “genres” when I said labels – as in pop/rock, country, etc, not label as in Sony/Jive etc. Yeah I realize that most music comes from a “major label” – which of course is why it’s so hard to get noticed on an indie label, because the major ones control the market really.

    David Bendeth:

    “Internet is just low quality, all good. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streaming_media” 23 minutes ago via web

    “Thank you Crystal fans for all the kind words, you will like full versions better. Crystal is an amazing artist, just wait.” 41 minutes ago via web

    I could tell the clips are still low quality. I’m sure these clips are actually from the album cuts and not from an earlier version (like the leaked snippets from a month or so ago), but you can tell that they’re a low bitrate and I’m guessing there’s a rather large amount of compression applied to them to convert them to that low bitrate – all to make them quicker to stream from a website. I think part of the reason Arlene sounds as good as it does in the clip is because there are no drums or keyboards – and the higher overtones of those instruments, when compressed into a low bitrate, sound like crapola. That’s why years back when I first started using mp3 files I quickly jumped from the 128 kbps ones to 192 kbps, and then even 256 after a while. 128′s sounded like crap, and I’m guessing these are more like 32 or maybe 64 kbps at best.

    They also seem to have had a tendency to pick some of the less interesting passages of the songs – of course there’s not much you can get in one of these clips but with the exception of the Mine All Mine clip, her voice is within about a half octave range (ok, I didn’t go back and check note by note, but it’s certainly limited).

    Like I said, my angst is gone. There may be a track or two I’m not totally crazy about but I don’t know if I have hardly a single album that I like every track off of, including albums by my favorites. And sometimes songs that weren’t favorites end up growing on me too.

    If you have elements of folk, country and rock and you think of other artists doing that right now, there are not many. This makes her very different from everyone else. That only has to be a good thing as it becomes about the artist and not just the song.

    I like what she’s doing style wise, but truthfully you’ve hit on one of the biggest problems for her. There are a lot of people that need to be able to compartmentalize everything with something else they know, or else they can’t accept it. Of course for some people it’s just not their cup of tea even if they do understand what someone’s doing, but in some cases I think people aren’t willing to give someone/something a try if you can’t tell them “well you know _____, it’s pretty much like that.” Why do you think so many people say, when describing a food to someone, “well, it tastes like chicken?” I’m not saying that there aren’t people that will go outside their comfort zone and give something a try (her music in this case), but not being comparable to hardly anyone else isn’t totally a badge of honor. It’s honestly a very scary place to be in – great if you happen to catch on, damned hard if you don’t.

  • Brian_C82

    lol, it stood out for me too! how funny is that? maybe because it also reminds me of kelly clarkson or just the type of songs that i listen to.

    Or because it’s easily the best song on the album. Memo to Crystal: There is a reason why Kara makes millions.

  • telemetry

    Crystal is not really my cup of tea. But I was excited to hear how her album sounds after hearing FD and HO. Because those song really sounded great. But after listening to these snippets I am left feeling a bit disappointed. Especially after we have been hearing for weeks what a great songwriter Crystal is, it feels like there is something missing. Some of the songs just sounds like some random 80′s or 90′s music. For example the song with the whistling sounded a bit like a Roxette knock off. Crystal’s voice still sounds good. Perhaps it would just be better to judge to full songs. :)

  • opalruby

    Just sitting here reading these comments, and it struck me that usually at about this time in an ex-Idol contestant’s career, one of two general opinions prevails. Either the Idol is exactly like popular recording artist X,Y and Z (almost always not true) and will therefore struggle to attract anyone’s interest (well, unless we’re talking about Adam Lambert – ha!) OR the Idol’s album is full of horrible generic songwriter-for-hire dreck enforced upon them by the Sony machine, that does not represent them musically at all.

    If everyone here is struggling to definitively describe Crystal’s music, and can only say that it seems to straddle several genres, and has echoes of several other artists but is not quite like any of them, AND at the same time nobody seems to be in any doubt that this sound is authentically Crystal, well, that can only be good, can’t it?

    Oh, by the way, I quite liked all the snippets, and have heard plenty of music similar to this on AOL genre radio, but not sure how current it sounds. And the only song that really stuck in my head is Lonely Won’t Come Around.

  • karenc

    Q3:

    There are a number of successful contemporary folk-rock artists. And “Beg Steal Or Borrow” Ray LaMontagne And The Pariah Dogs got nominated for the Grammy song of the Year — and Mumford & Sons are folk rock — so someone likes folk rock and it has a market — a large and growing market.

    I saw an interview with Mumford and Sons the other day on Fuse. The host said that their type of acoustic folk rock music is making a comeback on the charts. I thought it was an interesting comment, and it was from someone in the music industry media. So it is possible that Crystal would fall into this also since she is in a similar genre.

  • Elliegrll

    Radio does not equal sales, Just spins

    This isn’t exactly true. I think Gaga, Ke$ha, the Black Eyed Peas, Taylor Swift and Eminem would disagree. But the bigger issue for Crystal is if she can’t promote her songs via radio, if that’s not the medium that her audience listens to, then how will she let those who buy Folk/rock music know that she has an album out.

  • dancingqueen

    I pre-ordered to support Crystal’s career, because, we all know without sales of the first CD, and sometimes even with them, the idol contestants can easily fall off the musical planet.

    Snippets just aren’t enough to make a judgement. Too often I have fallen in love with a snippet, only to hate the full song, and vice-versa.

  • springboard

    But the bigger issue for Crystal is if she can’t promote her songs via radio, if that’s not the medium that her audience listens to, then how will she let those who buy Folk/rock music know that she has an album out.

    Word of mouth, can be a way to expand a fanbase and may be more prevalent in the indie/folk/rock circle, so suited to Crystal genre although it is difficult to know whether coming from idol she would be considered cool enough.

  • kvwicks13

    Crystal really should have made an album that’s Top 40 and CHR/HAC friendly. You know, like Lee did.

    Well at least Lee’s songs sound current and were written current. Crystal’s songs sound like they are from the 80′s. And some of them were probably written 10-15 years ago. Just saying!

  • shlitzy

    Lee’s songs sound current alright, like they just came out of a Burger King ad.

  • movin2thabeet

    I think Crystal sells this album by getting out there – lots of interviews and gigs. I can see her being interviewed on NPR, for example, a great place to reach alot of receptive ears. And hitting the small club circuit, and colleges and festivals, as well as opening for similar genre bigger names.

  • TheRedBeanie

    If Burger King ad sounds like Lee’s music I would eat burger everyday even though I don’t even like meats.

  • karenc

    Opalruby:

    If everyone here is struggling to definitively describe Crystal’s music, and can only say that it seems to straddle several genres, and has echoes of several other artists but is not quite like any of them, AND at the same time nobody seems to be in any doubt that this sound is authentically Crystal, well, that can only be good, can’t it?

    I agree that is good. Really, the most successful artists in music are not always necessarily the ones that sound like everyone else. Sometimes the biggest hits come from someone who sounded different than every one else, and have an identifiable sound. Which IMO, is one of the problems with pop music today, is that most of it is being written by a handful of writers.

    I do think Crystal does have an identifiable sound. The fact that people are hearing different genres in her music like folk rock and country is good for Crystal also, because even though the album is marketed as pop rock, there is a strong possibility for crossover with country, and country crossover albums are doing well right now.

    To me, her music closest to Alanis Morrisette and Melissa Etheridge, plus some more country. The songs I like the best from the snippets were For What It’s worth and Kiss Ya, and I liked Hold On also. I saw her do Farmer’s Daughter and I liked the full version of that she did too. I’m not sure yet if I’m going to buy the whole album, but I like some her songs better than I thought I would and I might buy a couple.

  • artemis

    shlitzy-if by Burger King commercial you mean Lee’s songs have a hook and you can still remember them 5 minutes after you’ve heard them, well, thanks! There’s a reason so many advertisers use radio friendly songs in their commercials. I’d love to see him getting the royalties,too. Which particular song of Lee’s did you have in mind?
    But back to Crystal, nobody meant to insult her by saying some of the snippets sound country (though some of the posters who are current country fans disagree). Crystal herself said some of her album would sound country.I like “Hold On” (maybe cause I love Kelly) though I know that’s not the sound Crystal is going for and it does not represent her album, judging from the snippets. As I said before, I also like Mine All Mine. The rest, I’m waiting to hear the whole song.
    Perhaps some of her fans would have been happier with a live recording of an acoustic performance. To me, Crystal always sounds better live than recorded. I bought many of her songs during the show, but don’t play them much-something is missing that was there when she performed them before a live audience.

  • steph6449

    The fact that people are hearing different genres in her music like folk rock and country is good for Crystal also, because even though the album is marketed as pop rock, there is a strong possibility for crossover with country, and country crossover albums are doing well right now.

    Attaching a country-ish label to it may be helpful to her in some ways — sounds more marketable than folk, for ex., if you’re talking to audiences who don’t listen to either, lol.

    But I don’t think it will help her crossover into mainstream country markets, radio, etc. Maybe it could fit as some have suggested into the alt-country scene, I don’t listen to that so no position to gauge.

  • Eriko

    I could tell the clips are still low quality. but you can tell that they’re a low bitrate and I’m guessing there’s a rather large amount of compression applied to them to convert them to that low bitrate – all to make them quicker to stream from a website. I think part of the reason Arlene sounds as good as it does in the clip is because there are no drums or keyboards – and the higher overtones of those instruments, when compressed into a low bitrate, sound like crapola.

    They also seem to have had a tendency to pick some of the less interesting passages of the songs

    I agree with all above. The snippets seem also be from the more busy parts of the songs, chorus etc. where the heavy compression makes them sound muddy and covered with like an electric “buzz” or “tiss” sound. So, I´m optimistic, that full length songs in good sound quality will result in a very different and much better impression of the songs.

    Kiss Ya sounds IMO much better than I´ve heard it before, the full band added a lot of punch. I´m hoping when hearing the full songs, I´ll get some of that impression in other songs as well

  • sr4mjc

    Finally listened to the clips when a little more awake this morning and it’s actually different than I expected. Always thought Lonely had a good hook, but I hate the whistling. Whistling and clapping are two of my pet peeves in music, so I’m not sure I’d be able to listen to it that much. The production is more rock than I expected, which I like, although I guess her fans don’t. There is a lot going on in the background of a few songs. I’m not a country fan and yes, some sound country leaning to me, especially the instrumentation. I think Hold On is very radio friendly and would do fine on HAC.

    But all in all, it does sound like an Idol release. It borders on mainstream enough in production to get some radio airplay but all in all not interesting enough to impress the AAA format she’s wanting to join. They straddled the line when they should have picked a side. YMMW.

    ETA: I am interested to see what the critics think because I’m not hearing anything particularly original or ground breaking, nor do I expect it from Idol releases. Yes, she wrote them and fought for her songs but that doesn’t make them automatically brilliant and frankly they are no more memorable than Lee’s, but at least her voice is prettier even if she has some volume control/shouty issues, which could have been fixed in the studio. The exception is FD because of the subject matter, although I think it’s a terrible choice for radio. I guess we’ll see. Now that Ezperanza Spalding.. I didn’t know who she was and I don’t even like Jazz, but I can see what she’s getting accolades and praise she’s getting from the Grammy voters.

  • glamertitis

    then how will she let those who buy Folk/rock music know that she has an album out.

    She’ll get herself a reality show ala fantasia, pull out all that back story that’s been missing, a wacky mother and some hippie relatives and she will be all set ;)
    Seriously, the only way to get famous from reality shows these days is to go viral like SuBo, Jackie, Beiber etc. Being a legitimate artist is dead. You’ve got to stir up controversy because people love that sh*t

  • Eriko

    ETA: I am interested to see what the critics think because I’m not hearing anything particularly original or ground breaking, nor do I expect it from Idol releases.

    Just curious, what do you call “particularly original or ground breaking” Any examples so I have a better understanding of your definition?

  • wjmtv

    I haven’t listened to the album yet–I’m waiting for a full stream, so I don’t know if she sounds country, alt-country, folk-rock or industrial.

    But what I *do* know, is that if Crystal can’t be put into a tidy box, you can forget about her breaking any sales records. Not that she needs to or wants to—we’ve all spent many keyboard strokes talking about how many musicians can have wonderful careers without a Top 40 hit—but without a label (as in category, not record company) mainstream chart-topping success ain’t gonna happen.

    You can have all the songwriting and singing talent in the world, but most people won’t know your name if they can’t hang a handy tag around your neck. If you don’t believe me, go read Raul Malo’s bio & listen to a recording or three. He refused to be categorized, and as a result one of the most amazing voices of the 20th/21st century gets a “Who?” from 98% of the population.

    sr4mjc, Esperanza Spaulding is a jazz vocalist who plays stand-up bass. (How weird is that?) She’s pretty awesome. Maybe the Grammy nom will encourage more people to check her out.

    In spite of everything, I remain convinced that Crystal will have a career that keeps her very very happy.

  • Eriko

    In spite of everything, I remain convinced that Crystal will have a career that keeps her very very happy.

    ITA. And I don´t think “breaking records” will add to that happiness. What will make Jive happy on the other hand, is a different story :)

  • sallysimmons

    The worst of all worlds – the style of music is outdated and the songs are very average. They’re not terrible, but they’re also no better than the average songs released on iTunes by all kinds of average songwriters who never get anywhere. Crystal’s sales numbers are going to make Lee’s look like SuBo.

  • Brian_C82

    There are some bands and singers that can’t be put into a box, but still manage to enjoy commercial success. Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Arcade Fire come to mind. The difference is that those groups make great music. There is nothing great about Farmers Daughter. It’s middle of the road stuff.

  • tinawina

    Why do I feel this whole conversation will repeat itself when the full stream of the album arrives? :D

    I’m not saying anything until I hear the whole thing. I have reversed myself too many times from my snippet-based opinion to my actual album-based opinion. Lesson learned.

  • lucy

    This has been tossed around before – the “alt-country” label – but where exactly do you hear those sorts?

    You hear them in small clubs and bars, mostly, and at some festivals. Ironically, you probably hear them most in big cities where there’s a whole lot of live music.

    If you can get a strong following in that scene somewhere then you can make a pretty decent career for yourself, I think. Crystal’s got a distinctive and beautiful voice, in my opinion. I think how well she ultimately does depends on whether her songwriting holds up as really strong. I like some of her pre-Idol stuff that I’ve heard, but I think this album heard in its entirety will tell part of the tale that’s now missing — Is her songwriting strong enough to stand up against production that may or may not be people’s cup of tea? Is it strong and varied enough to provide success for somebody who’s likely to be an album/listen-to-for-a-whole-evening-concert artist rather than a singles artist? We’ll see, I guess.

  • Q3

    There are multi-genre artists, there are artists who transcend genre labels — Crystal is neither. She is releasing an album that will be labeled pop or pop-rock in the stores and online — and which is squarely folk-rock.

    It is not country music nor is it produced like a contemporary country album. Crystal covered one classic song on this album — one of the most influential folk-rock songs of the 20th Century, done by one of the archetypes of folk-rock Buffalo Springfield — “For What It’s Worth”. Just like FWIW (a quintessential anti-war, anti-establishment song) was never played on country radio, this music will not be played on mainstream country music stations.

  • Brian_C82

    Isn’t that the problem? FD won’t be embraced by country fans, but it’s too “country sounding” for people who aren’t into country music. Who in the world is going to buy this thing?

    BTW, I can’t get over that ridiculous Buffalo Springfield cover. It sounds like something Andrew Garcia would do. Coffee shop singing at its finest.

  • BeachBum

    So… the people that don’t like Crystal’s music, STILL don’t like Crystal’s music. The people that weren’t sure they liked Crystal’s music, STILL aren’t sure if they like Crystal’s music. And the people that like Crystal’s music, STILL like Crystal’s music (other than the people that don’t like all those instruments on her new album). To quote The Talking Heads… “Same As It Ever Was”! Here’s more news… this album wasn’t produced for ANY of the people who visit MJ’s or any other AI blog on a regular basis. Because those that weren’t going to buy her music, still won’t buy her music… and those that are going to buy her music will still buy her music. This album was produced for a MASS audience who have either never heard her music or only know her in passing from American Idol. It’s also ridiculous to blame the producer for not making the type of album YOU want her to make. The producer is responsible for working with the artist and label to create music that will SELL to the other 280 million people who did not watch American Idol. This is still a capitalistic economy and we all have to make a living, right? Do you honestly think an all acoustic “live” album would sell enough or that the label would even release it? The answer is NO!! The thing I will say is that for the most part, Crystal gets to release HER music. She will succeed or struggle based on her music and not someone else’s music. I think we can all respect that regardless of our opinion about her or her music. ROCK ON!

  • neartist

    this music will not be played on mainstream country music stations.

    We shall see. Of course I am not saying every single song on the CD could be played on country but there are a few I could see fitting in.

  • bootslacrosse

    Crystal’s music as represented by these low quality clips is like a choice piece of steak slathered with store bought barbecue sauce. Commercialized over-production. But I’ll still buy the album cause even with the over-production and crappy clips, she sounds great. With the possible exception of Casey, I think Crystal’s will be a better album than any other season 9 idol will or has put out.

  • songsungblue

    The thing I will say is that for the most part, Crystal gets to release HER music. She will succeed or struggle based on her music and not someone else’s music.

    Well said. I would be more invested in her ‘meteoric rise’ or her radio career if I was actually getting royalties :) Since I’m not, I’m more interested in the fact that she recorded her originals. It seems they recorded a whole lot of material, and this is where it ended. That’s impressive, IMO. I like the girl’s moxie, and I always have. It’s very hard for me to judge from snippets what the album is like, so I’m waiting for the full stream.

    On the other hand, I still listen to Up to the Mountain and Summer Wind on my iPod. I think she has a very lovely feel for phrasing.

  • steph6449

    We shall see. Of course I am not saying every single song on the CD could be played on country but there are a few I could see fitting in.

    IMO mainstream country radio will not play this. For one thing, it doesn’t appear that there has been any effort to get Crystal even exposed to country radio programmers and media. And the types of appearances she has made post-AI (e.g., San Francisco festivals/etc.) are to some degree antithetical to the types of environments where country singers perform. So I don’t know why mainstream country radio would go out of their way to play this.

    Also I think country programmers will judge what is “country” (~country enough, anyway) by the whole album, and this doesn’t sound like a country album and isn’t being marketed that way. Why would a country radio programmer pick out a couple of songs on an album that is likely to be at most a moderate commercial success, and decide to play them over artists who have music out from country labels backing them.

    Also, even if Crystal’s CD were a lot more country than it is in style and lyrics, and even if she were signed with a country label vs. Jive out of LA, it is just extremely hard for new female country acts to get played on country radio. The odds would still be against her getting much country radio airplay.

    Very very few of the new female country acts in the past year or more have had much success on the country top 40 chart, including people like LBB who’ve had a lot more visibility in country circles; can sing and dance well on tv while only partially clothed, lol; and seem to have a friendly reception by country media, GAC/CMT, etc.

    Even though AAA or HAC may not seem to be large formats, she probably has as much chance of actually getting played to any degree of audience than being low to non-played on the country charts, which would be the most likely outcome there.

  • lucy

    So… the people that don’t like Crystal’s music, STILL don’t like Crystal’s music. The people that weren’t sure they liked Crystal’s music, STILL aren’t sure if they like Crystal’s music. And the people that like Crystal’s music, STILL like Crystal’s music

    Well, to be fair, I’m not sure what other outcome we’re ever going to get when there is one of these snippet releases. They’re invariably bad recordings that don’t actually highlight the sounds that the real album will highlight and they nearly always contain the least compelling part of lots of the songs. They never tell the tale. Does anybody know why it seems to work like this? Heck, when you see a movie trailer, half the time it’s the absolute *best* 45 seconds of the whole film!

    Sometimes, though, the tale does get told and minds do get made up when we hear the actual album. Often, we even find out that people who don’t like a person’s genre, can still admire things about the album. I’m looking forward to later this week when we’ll get to hear the whole thing in something much closer to its actual form.

  • Eriko

    How people can come up with strong opinions, let alone assertions like a couple have made, from listening to low quality snippets, is beyond me. Usually, I need at least 3 serious listening sessions of the whole album before I know if an album is a keeper. Sure, one session will often do, to determent if I want to bother a second listen, especially with the lighter stuff. In regards to Crystals album, since it doesn´t fall into the “typical” category of what I normally listen to, I´d guess no less than 3 sessions will be required for me, before I can express an opinion to the same degree as some here can do after these short low quality snippets

  • Lulu2

    The cover looks like Carol King’s Tapestry cover. May it be as successful. I’m relaly looking forward to this album. I bet it’s going to be just what I expect from Crystal and more true to herself than most idol debut albums. I haven’t read all 147 comments before mine, but I did see a derogatory comment about the “rusty old toilet” on the cover and relating that to the album itself. No offense, but that’s a little bit of silly.

  • BeachBum

    How do you use the block quotes from other people’s comments? Sorry, sort of a newbie. Thanks!

  • Eriko

    How do you use the block quotes from other people’s comments? Sorry, sort of a newbie. Thanks!

    First click on “b-quote” then paste the words you want to quote, then close the quote by clicking “Close Tags”

    After that, you can write your own words

  • steph6449

    How do you use the block quotes from other people’s comments? Sorry, sort of a newbie. Thanks!

    You can also paste in the text that you want in the quote box thing-y. Then highlight that text (only that text), and click the b-quote button. If it’s not in the right place, you can cut/paste the blockquote tags including the surrounding brackets. Or add/subtract text from inside or outside the pair of tags, which is probably easier so as not to mess up the html tag format.

  • onenineeight

    Liking what I hear so far. Some songs sound abit cluttered but these are low quality snippets so we’ll wait and see. None of the songs sound country to me though.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    Crystal herself said some of her album would sound country.

    Exactly. I don’t quite understand the dispute, when the artist herself has designated some of her songs as “country”. Some people seem to interpret “country” as a negative description, which was certainly not how I intended it, and I’m sure that Crystal didn’t regard it as negative either. Music is just a matter of personal taste, regardless of the genre. Different strokes for different folks.

  • fictitiousreality

    Lol why do people need to over analyze everything, who really cares if its country or blues or rock, all these genres overlap each other anyways… Just enjoy the music, crystal has put out an album which are her influences, its like saying ‘here I come, but first you gotta listen to these awesome roots music’. I am really liking what I hear, I hope she comes with a bang on her full band performance on leno. Hoping its Kiss Ya or On the Run. Lets hear those big bass slaps knock the roofs off Leno… Can’t wait…

  • meyers77

    Can’t wait for the 14th, this album is gonna be great.