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Jason White


I give up, somebody tell me why this talented sonofabitch isn't famous. He's beautiful, he's a super dude, his music's fabulous. Tell you what, maybe he's not famous yet, but he will be. Oh, he will be.

I'm a little lathered up about it, I saw him play solo last night in front of the amazing Pat Buchanan (see our review of Pat's latest) and Jason knocked us all out, on every single tune, without ingratiating himself beyond sheer and relentless excellence.

Jason's 2001 debut, Shades of Gray, not only reaped outrageous acclaim from the press, but Tim McGraw picked up a great song called "Red Ragtop" and made it Country enough to take it all the way to #1. So why didn't a major label deal follow for the young chiseled author? Perhaps we'll cover this and other riddles in an interview with the artist in the next quarter.

Though the new CD, Tonight's Top Story, has a melodious, groovy and uplifting quality, there's plenty of tragedy, addiction, suicide, homicide, twisted love, and broken people to go around. To my ear he is equal parts Springsteen, Billy Joel, and Elvis Costello, though the acknowledged influences are Dylan, Neil Young, Elvis Costello, and Van Morrison.

Viktor Krauss produced both records masterfully, and along with electric and acoustic bass, tracked electric guitars and keyboards. Three of my favorite Music City killers appear throughout, Jack Silverman on electric guitars, Rick Lonow on drums, and Jim Hoke on saxophone, recorder, clarinet, and flute. The artist himself is a hot player, and on this disc played acoustic and electric guitars, harmonica and percussion.

The album opener "Slow News Day" is very AAA radio friendly and should propel our man to various national corners. But the bitch is that it's bigger than that, a lot bigger. This cat is a star, and if it doesn't happen, something or somebody screwed up. Listen to that song and the clips of "Fat City Saturday Night," and the beautiful "Woman of the World" which reminds this listener of the best of Gordon Lightfoot and Harry Chapin. But if you don't just buy this record, you are missing too many great songs. Fact of the matter is, you're missing too many great songs if you don't buy both of the Jason White records. As soon as possible, here. • FG

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