Jewel – Perfectly Clear – music review

Artist: Jewel
Title: Perfectly Clear
Label: Valory Music Co.
Rating: 6/10

Corporate line:
It comes as no surprise that Jewel, an acclaimed American singer, songwriter, actress, poet, painter, philanthropist and daughter to an Alaskan cowboy singer-songwriter, finds herself in the embrace of country music for the release of her seventh career album, “Perfectly Clear.”

Jewel’s personal odyssey, partly chronicled on one of the best selling debut albums of all time, the twelve-time platinum Pieces of You, comes full circle with her forthcoming country album, “Perfectly Clear,” the debut release on newly launched Nashville-based independent label The Valory Music Co.

Jewel is set apart her whole career for not only singing, but writing all her songs, and this album is no exception. “I’ve been writing country songs my whole career; some of the songs on this record date back to when I was 18 years old. I’ve been hanging on to them until now. They were meant for a record like this one.”

The record’s first single “Stronger Woman” is a powerful and positive message that resonates with women of any age. Perfectly Clear is produced by Jewel and John Rich of Big and Rich fame. “Jewel is probably one of the greatest American singer-songwriters we have. It is such an honor to work with anyone of that caliber of talent,” Rich says. Jewel has spent a lot of time in Nashville over the last few years, and has naturally been drawn to and accepted by the Nashville music community. “If I were discovered today, there is no doubt that I would be signed as a country artist. Songs like “You Were Meant For Me” would have been a country hit today, and not a pop hit as it was in the 90s. The genres have changed more than I feel I have,” says Jewel.

The hits:

“Stronger Woman” – Jewel’s gorgeous voice carries the song. This song in less able hands wouldn’t be as interesting.
“Thump Thump” – A simple, beautiful song. It has a lot of corny moments–but Jewel’s voice is amazing.
“Perfectly Clear” – A beautiful song that shouldn’t have been left for last.

The rest:

“I Do” – Pretty, unremarkable. It goes from a total country song like “Stronger Woman” to a folksy track like this is really startling.
“Rosey and Mick” – Great lyrics: “Mick came home late last night/ He drank enough beer to take the edge off a knife.” But the song doesn’t have much of a hook.

Jewel was born to make country music. It’s the perfect transition for her and a great career move. Country is one of the surest ways to a long career. So why didn’t Jewel make an entire country album? She still has one foot in folk music and one in country. At some point she needs to make a choice instead of releasing schizophrenic albums.

Jewel performs “Thump Thump”

Jewel interview/performance on GMA