Kenny Chesney's latest single, "El Cerrito Place" is currently climbing the charts. Some of you may recognize this song from the Charlie Robinson version of 2004. I have always been a fan of the song since I heard Charlie perform it, but how does Kenny's stack up?
First of all, this song is much louder than Charlie's. This is not surprising. Kenny is a big time radio star, he is going to release big time radio sounds. Does some of the emotion get lost in that? Yeah a little. Enough to ruin the song? Hardly. If you listen to them back to back, you will "believe" Charlie more. Hear Kenny's alone though, and you still feel it. But this isn't a compare and contrast of the two versions. Kenny Chesney's "El Cerrito Place" is good, whether it stacks up to Charlie's or not. And in a radio world that's dominated by pickup trucks, tan legs, and beer, this is a huge breath of fresh air.
The story-telling is spot on. This, of course, isn't due to Kenny, it's due to the songwriter, Keith Gattis. Some of the lines really jump right out of the radio at you: "Somebody said they might have seen you, where the ocean meets the land, so I've been out here all night lookin for your footprints in the sand..." The whole song is full of vivid imagery like this. I feel like I'm right there on the journey with Kenny, looking for his lost love.
Vocally, Kenny is spot on. He may sing some of the lamest, tried material at times, but no doubt Chesney has pipes. Grace Potter once again delivers perfect harmony on the track. Their voices blend so well; there is real chemistry between them.
Overall, this is a great song, regardless of who sings it. Keith Gettis wrote a goodn, and I think anyone could sing it and make it great. Kenny's is louder and bigger than prior versions, but the emotion is still there, and the radio needs more stories like this. Highly Recommended!!!