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article imageOp-Ed: Best country albums released by female artists this year

By Markos Papadatos     Nov 30, 2013 in Entertainment
2013 has been a good year for female country artists and their new albums. Here is a list of my 10 personal favorites that were released this year.
At No. 10, we have Sheryl Crow and her new album Feels Like Home. I love its laid-back lead single "Easy" and "Waterproof Mascara" is an elegant ballad.
Kellie Pickler is at No. 9 with her new release The Woman I Am. Her songs on this project are more traditional and her vocals are crystalline. I enjoyed "Little Bit Gypsy," the autobiographical title cut, "Closer To Nowhere" and the upbeat "Selma Drye," among others.
At No. 8, is country newcomer Carrie Zaruba with Woman on A Mission. While her CD only contains six songs, they are all high-quality tracks. I really love the title track, "Time Bomb" and the gorgeous closing song "Andalusia." She is definitely worth checking out.
At No. 7, is CMA "New Artist of the Year" winner Kacey Musgraves with Same Trailer Different Park. I really like the lead single "Merry Go 'Round" and her newest single "Follow Your Arrow."
At No. 6, is up-and-coming country artist Elizabeth Lyons and her eponymous debut EP. She is extremely talented as a singer and songwriter and she sounds like Taylor Swift, Kimberly Perry (from The Band Perry) and Martina McBride all mixed in one. She is able to sing ballads and uptempo songs with equal ease, and convey the message of her songs through her sincere storytelling ability. If she keeps this up, her future in country music will be very bright.
Cassadee Pope comes in at No. 5 with Frame By Frame. She is the country version of Avril Lavigne. Her lead single "Wasting All The Tears" is dynamic and infectious, and the same holds true for the majority of the songs of her new CD.
At No. 4, is Ashley Monroe and Like a Rose. While her CD wasn't a major commercial success, vocally, it is a country masterpiece. She is our generation's Lee Ann Womack. I love the traditional country sound in her voice, and I enjoyed all the tracks on her album since they are all rich and diverse.
Ashton Shepherd comes in at No. 3 with her traditional country effort This is America. The stellar title track and lead-off single is worth the price of this CD alone. I also love "Seventeen Again" and "The Next Time You Cross My Mind." Her duet with Daryle Singletary on "Golden Ring" is pure magic. Country legends George Jones and Tammy Wynette would have been pleased with it.
At No. 2, is "The Voice" winner Danielle Bradbery and her new CD, which can easily be summed up as mesmerizing. All the songs on here are great and her vocals are top-notch. "The Heart of Dixie" singer deserves to be the next country superstar.
At No. 1, the best country album by a female in 2013 goes to Canadian country songstress Michelle Wright. From start to finish, her new album Strong is spectacular. It is emotional, raw, inspirational and optimistic, all in one. The title cut is outstanding and meaningful and her latest single "Crazy Stupid Love" is equally beautiful. This talented woman never seems to get the credit that she deserves in the industry. Wright deserves to win "Female Artist of the Year" at next year's Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA) awards thanks to this prolific studio album. Congratulations Michelle Wright!
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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