Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Terri Clark, "Northern Girl"

After being cut off by U.S. country radio, Terri Clark eventually parted ways with her label home of Mercury Nashville, and focused her efforts on her native Canada, where she has continued to enjoy chart success.

In a similar vein as Faith Hill's "Mississippi Girl," Terri celebrates her Canadian roots on her brand new single "Northern Girl."  We may have become accustomed to hearing country artists proclaim the joys of the Southern lifestyle in the U.S.A., so it almost comes as a surprise to hear Terri Clark singing about how she "grew up drivin' on black ice, spinnin' in circles under neon lights."  But that's exactly the kind of place Terri Clark came from, so it's a nice change of pace from hearing so many cliche-laden songs about backwoods Southern living.

The arrangement on "Northern Girl" meshes electric guitars together with steel guitars, while still allowing Terri's strong vocal performance to cut through.  With a jubilant melody and an infectious opening guitar hook, the song will no doubt make you very happy.  Even the na-na-na-nas, which often threaten to be annoying, sound right at home on this track  The line "You can take me out of there, but you can't take it out of me," is gratuitous, but it's not enough to sour the song's sweet flavor.  Granted, it would be desirable to hear Terri dig into some deeper subject matter with the rest of her new album, but for now we can all just join Terri in her joyous celebration of her "Northern Girl" heritage.

Since U.S. country radio hasn't shown much interest in Terri Clark since 2004, it's unlikely that a song so ripe with Canadian references would bring her back into their good graces, though the song has already become a Top 20 hit in Terri's Canadian homeland.  Still, it's a solid entry into Terri's catalog, and an enjoyable preview of her upcoming new album

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