top of page

Michael McDonald, Wide Open (2017)


1 Hail Mary 2 Just Strong Enough 3 Find It In Your Heart

4 Half Truth 5 Ain't No Good 6 Honest Emotion

7 Blessing In Disguise 8 Dark Side

9 If You Wanted To Hurt Me 10 Beautiful Child

11 Too Short 12 Free A Man

Blue-eyed soul, soft-rock veteran, Michael McDonald makes his return with Wide Open; his first new album of original material in almost twenty years. The 12 new songs on the album were produced by both Michael McDonald and drummer, Shannon Forrest, from Toto. The album includes many guest artists and musicians including Forrest, guitarist/singer Warren Haynes (Allman Brothers Band, Gov't Mule), guitarist Robben Ford, bassist Marcus Miller, saxophonist Branford Marsalis and many more. The album is available now in CD and vinyl formats as well as digital download and streaming.

Wide open is a tour de force highlighting McDonald’s song writing skills and his trademark tender voice that carries the listener over a gamut of emotions such as hope, fear, heartache & regret.

Wide Open kicks off with Hail Mary, a smooth groove orientated track that reels the listener in and sets the tone for the record. Other highlights include the soulful Find It in Your Heart, the mid-tempo blues rocker Half Truth, and the breezy Just Strong Enough. Of course, it wouldn’t be a Michael McDonald album without a couple of introspective ballades and the songs Honest Emotion & Dark Side are just that. I honestly think that those that songs will no doubt be added to his live shows or a future compilation of his greatest hits. Now, just when you think you’ve heard it all, out of nowhere comes a clear throwback to the past. The pop rocker, If You Wanted To Hurt Me which sounds like a long lost track from a Michael McDonald/Doobie Brothers or Kenny Loggins album.

The only minor flaw with Wide Open is that some listeners may find the songs a little long. With an average running time of about five and a half minutes per track, some may have a hard time adjusting. These aren’t your standard 3 to 4-minute love songs that McDonald has become synonymous for.

The bottom line: Wide Open is a return to form that will remind McDonalds fans that he is truly one of the definable voices in soft rock. Track for track this may just be one of the strongest releases of his career. Highly recommended.

12 views0 comments
bottom of page