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Cledus T. Judd

I Stoled This Record – 1996 (Razor & Tie)

Reviewed by Chuck Hamilton

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CDs by Cledus T. Judd

Cledus T. Judd is the latest in a long line of entertainers, from Homer & Jethro to Weird Al Yankovich, parodying other songs. Judd pokes fun at "Top 40" country songs and the guy may have hit a gusher, since there's a lot worthy of satire. Judd takes aim at Shania Twain, John Michael Montgomery and Neal McCoy with varying results.

Judd is best when his songs have a bit of an edge, but unfortunately, more than a few are as insipid as the ones he's mocking. An example: "If Shania Was Mine" ("Any Man of Mine") offered Judd an opportunity to razz an entertainer who sells a lot of records, but whose artistic ability is still in doubt. Judd, however, took the easy way out, doing a song about a guy pining for Twain. The result? A song only slightly less annoying than the original. Judd can do better, as he did on two of the funniest cuts, "The Change" ("For a Change") and "You Have No Right to Remain Violent" ("You Have the Right to Remain Silent"). But even those lose their laugh power after a few listens.

Judd needs to take more chances, risk offending people (ever heard of Kinky Friedman, Cledus?) before his work becomes consistently funny.