Rolling Stone - 5/13/99, p.72
Included in Rolling Stone's "Essential Recordings of the 90's."
Rolling Stone - 11/29/903.5 Stars
- Very Good "...There's nothing freeze-dried about the songs and performances; they're loose and vibrant, albeit cleanly recorded and perfectly phrased..."
Musician - 3/91
"...Yoakam's vocals are better than ever and he seems to have found a comfortable groove in his songwriting..."
Stereo Review (3/91) - "...his music often stands head and shoulders over over the 'real thing'..."
Personnel: Dwight Yoakam (vocals, acoustic guitar); Roger Miller, Patty Loveless (vocals); Dean Parks (acoustic guitar); Pete Anderson (electric & baritone guitars); Al Perkins (lap steel guitar, banjo, dobro); Tom Brumley (lap steel guitar); Don Reed (fiddle); Scott Joss (fiddle, mandolin); Tim O'Brien (mandolin); Skip Edwards (keyboards); Chuck Domanico (acoustic bass); Tara Prodaniuk (bass); Jeff Donavan (drums); Lenny Castro (percussion); Tim O'Brien, Tommy Funderburk, Jim Lauderdale, Emily Saliers, Amy Ray (background vocals).
On 1990's IF THERE WAS A WAY, country artist Dwight Yoakam manages to continue the restlessly inventive streak that he began in earnest on BUENAS NOCHES FROM A LONELY ROOM. Perhaps more than any other outing in Yoakam's catalogue, this album shows the influence of his time spent on the Los Angeles rock scene, as his acoustic-guitar work perfectly meshes with the distinctive electric six-string playing of his longtime collaborator Pete Anderson to give the music a potent rock & roll edge.
The fiddle-laden opener, "The Distance Between You and Me," gets things off to an energetic start, and "Takes a Lot to Rock You" is a fierce, swaggering barnstormer. The title track, a wonderfully moody ballad that showcases Yoakam's heartbroken croon and Anderson's atmospheric baritone-guitar work, stands as one of the singer/songwriter's best tunes, while the aching "Send a Message to My Heart," performed with Patty Loveless, is easily one of the finest duets by either artist. A shining example of Yoakam's talents, IF THERE WAS A WAY is a must-have for any country-rock collection.