11 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

For better or worse, Jack Ingram no longer wears the Texas-rebel colors that earned him a cult following in the ‘90s. These days, he swims in the Nashville mainstream, but does so with intelligence and taste. Big Dreams & High Hopes rocks with assurance and draws upon real experience for its stories of country life and love. In addition to Ingram’s Summer ’09 smash hit “Barefoot and Crazy,” a rollicking ode to Southern outdoor fun, the swaggering “Barbie Doll” (featuring Dierks Bentley, among a slew of other country notables) and the exuberant “Free” are among the upbeat highlights here. Ingram reveals autobiographical hints in “Not Giving Up On Me” (an acoustic-powered lesson in emotional growth) and “In the Corner” (a sober anthem set to an atmospheric track). Even when he covers familiar ground — as in the playfully steamy “Man In Your Life” — he puts his own stamp on the tune. Among the ballads, “Seeing Stars” (a duet with Patty Griffin) stands out for its unassuming tenderness.

EDITORS’ NOTES

For better or worse, Jack Ingram no longer wears the Texas-rebel colors that earned him a cult following in the ‘90s. These days, he swims in the Nashville mainstream, but does so with intelligence and taste. Big Dreams & High Hopes rocks with assurance and draws upon real experience for its stories of country life and love. In addition to Ingram’s Summer ’09 smash hit “Barefoot and Crazy,” a rollicking ode to Southern outdoor fun, the swaggering “Barbie Doll” (featuring Dierks Bentley, among a slew of other country notables) and the exuberant “Free” are among the upbeat highlights here. Ingram reveals autobiographical hints in “Not Giving Up On Me” (an acoustic-powered lesson in emotional growth) and “In the Corner” (a sober anthem set to an atmospheric track). Even when he covers familiar ground — as in the playfully steamy “Man In Your Life” — he puts his own stamp on the tune. Among the ballads, “Seeing Stars” (a duet with Patty Griffin) stands out for its unassuming tenderness.

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