The Woman I Am
Kellie Pickler, who has spent the seven years since her “American Idol” debut churning out campy, girl power–themed country pop, finally hit a winning stride with 2012’s “100 Proof” and this year’s “The Woman I Am.”
While “100 Proof” was a structured throwback record that attempted to recreate the country music of the ’70s, “The Woman I Am” is a fresh take on traditional country music and is easily the most well-balanced record to come out of Nashville, Tenn., in recent years.
Lyrically, the album tries to paint Pickler as country’s new bad girl, and while she’s no Miranda Lambert, she can pull off the snarling “Ring for Sale,” where she sings, “And I’m gonna let it go real cheap/ I got a ring for sale/ A blue box with the velvet on and/ Act right now ’fore he finds out/ And I’ll throw in the dress for free.” The sentiment is stinging, and while other songs cash in on this gritty image, their lack of lyrical subtlety makes this bad-girl act seem a touch overdone.
Pickler has a strong sense of direction as a singer and artist, making the album title more than appropriate.