Album Reviews: The Hard Way by John WaiteJohn Waite has always been more than a one-hit wonder. People remember him best for 1984’s “Missing You,” but that doesn’t begin to encapsulate his 30-year career. From his mid-'70s albums with The Babys to his smash hit ballads with Bad English, he has always delivered pop-rock tunes that beg for radio play. His latest effort, The Hard Way, is no exception.
With only nine tracks, it’s a very quick listen without filler -- unless you consider the acoustic rehash of “Missing You” and the cover of Bob Dylan’s “Girl From The North Country” to be filler. But they are both more enjoyable selections than the innocuous fluff you might expect to be sandwiched between singles. Unlike many other artists, he seems to know when to edit himself - there’s not a dud in the set. He’s not really doing anything new on this release, but what he is doing - melodic pop-rock - is sorely missing in today’s music.
Unfortunately, there’s really no market for John Waite in today’s music landscape. His past hits are being played daily in elevators and your dentist offices, but soft rock radio and Muzak are reserved for hits from the past. I hope some adventurous radio station gives his new songs a chance. He’s not the one who's changed; he’s as radio-friendly as he was twenty years ago. - Doug Kamin
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