Review: Gary Bonnett "Red Dirt Songs"

The title track of Gary Bonnett's "Red Dirt Songs" is a foot-stompin' tribute to the masters of Texas country like Pat Green, Wade Bowen and Robert Earl Keen. But along the way, Bonnett gives us ample proof that other up-and-coming Red Dirt stars might be singing his name in the not too distant future.
As a veteran of the Air Force, Bonnett served his country, and now he's displaying his songwriting talent for the folks back home with 14 songs he wrote. The biggest surprise on the album is the terrific Texas country and bluegrass infused gem "December Snow." Bonnett offers intense vocals with superb instrumentation on a track that produces infectious toe-tapping. "December Snow" should be on the desks of program managers as a radio single in September 2010 and be Top 10 chart hit by December.

Another standout is a similar combination of bluegrass and Red Dirt titled "Now That You're Gone." Gary Bonnett has a real opportunity to create a signature sound that could win him fans both in America and abroad.

"Long Way Back Home" is a hard-edged Texas rock cut that oozes Gary Bonnett's passionate intensity. Likewise, "Girls Of Tuscon" is performed with an authenticity that is obviously drawn from personal experience.

"Just A Song" offers an interesting look into the soul of Gary Bonnett. Certain moments are reminiscent of both Wade Bowen and Chris Knight. This intense, honest vocal performance is well-suited to Bonnett.

Gary Bonnett is a name to watch in 2010, because "Red Dirt Songs" shows an artist just on the cusp of finding a sound that could catapult him to the top of the heap in Texas country. And if he produces an album of songs in the same style of "December Snow" with the honesty of "Just A Song," new musicians will be giving shout outs to Gary Bonnett before you know it.