The Driver

The Driver

by Charles Kelley



Stepping away from Lady Antebellum, Charles Kelley spreads his wings on his 2016 solo debut The Driver and, in the process, he reconnects with his Southern roots. These roots aren't precisely entangled in the backwoods. Based on this swift nine-track record -- clocking in at under 40 minutes, just like records used to back in the days before digital -- those roots are album-rock radio, a sound explicitly referenced in a cover of Tom Petty's "Southern Accents" where the head Heartbreaker's old muse is an enthusiastic duet partner, but this sensibility permeates throughout The Driver. It's there in the insistent, chiming guitars of the opening "Your Love," it's there in the cool urban cowboy simmer of "Dancing Around It," and even the burnished harmonies of the title track feel like a throwback to the '70s soft rock of America, or maybe B.W. Stevenson. This isn't to say Kelley isn't a modern guy, though -- quite the opposite, actually. Like the Brothers Osborne, Kelley enjoys how the past echoes in the present, so he'll play with these classic rock sounds but also a bit of soul ("Lonely Girl," "The Only One Who Gets Me," both sounding as if they were designed to be played alongside 2015 singles by Thomas Rhett or Brett Eldredge), and harness both his sensitive and rowdy sides in a nice clean pop sensibility. More than anything, these crowd-pleasing instincts give The Driver its charm: as it slides between soft aching tunes (including the Miranda Lambert duet "I Wish You Were Here") and widescreen pop anthems, this sounds as satisfying as listening to a sharply programmed radio station.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/05/2016
Label: Capitol Nashville
UPC: 0602547712196
catalogNumber: 002443802


  1. Your Love
  2. The Driver
  3. Dancing Around It
  4. Southern Accents
  5. Lonely Girl
  6. The Only One Who Gets Me
  7. Round In Circles
  8. I Wish You Were Here
  9. Leaving Nashville

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Charles Kelley   Primary Artist,Vocals,Vocal Harmony
Chad Cromwell   Drums
David Davidson   Violin
Jerry McPherson   Electric Guitar,Vocal Harmony
Michael Rhodes   Bass
Jimmie Lee Sloas   Bass
Daniel Tashian   Vocal Harmony
Biff Watson   Acoustic Guitar
Kristin Wilkinson   Strings
Paul Worley   Electric Guitar
Erik Hellerman   Overdubs
Michael Rojas   Synthesizer,Piano,Wurlitzer,Synthaxe,Hammond B3
Monisa Angell   Viola
Craig Young   Bass
Karen Winkelmann   Violin
Dierks Bentley   Vocal Harmony
Josh Kelley   Acoustic Guitar,Vocal Harmony
Rob McNelley   Electric Guitar,Vocal Harmony
Sari Reist   Cello
Miranda Lambert   Vocal Harmony
Nathan Chapman   Vocal Harmony
Chris Stapleton   Upright Bass
Mark Trussell   Electric Guitar
Jesse Frasure   Keyboards
Justin Schipper   Pedal Steel Guitar
Abe Stoklasa   Pedal Steel Guitar,Vocal Harmony
Eric Paslay   Vocal Harmony

Technical Credits

Stevie Nicks   Engineer
Tom Petty   Composer
Scott Campbell   Vocal Engineer
Daniel Tashian   Composer
Kristin Wilkinson   Arranger
Paul Worley   Producer
Erik Hellerman   Vocal Engineer
Clarke Schleicher   Engineer
Kevin Harper   Engineer
Josh Kelley   Composer,Programming
Jedd Hughes   Composer
Nathan Chapman   Composer
Chris Stapleton   Composer
Charles Kelley   Composer
Donovan Woods   Composer
Ashley Ray   Composer
Jesse Frasure   Composer,Programming
Abe Stoklasa   Composer
Eric Paslay   Composer

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