Sonny James

Born to Be With You

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Sonny James had his schtick down solid by the mid-'60s: snappy beats and bright acoustic guitars used to convert a wide array of material -- but especially the oldies -- into slick crossover country hits. On Born to Be With You he gives the treatment to the title track, a hit for the Chordettes in 1956. On "In Waikiki" James dabbles in Hawaiiana, and it's easy to imagine that he may have had high commercial hopes for "'68 Rock Island Line," although it was not released as a single. The other album tracks, mostly covers of pop and country hits like "Hawaiian Wedding Song" and "Above and Beyond," feel more like filler than usual, and overall Born to Be With You is one of James' least satisfying efforts.

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