George Jones, Kenny Rogers and Joe Nichols are just a few of the artists who have recorded tunesmith Mike Dekle’s songs over the past three decades or so, but his own output as a singer is pretty slim—and as Tributes demonstrates, that’s a shame. The loose concept of the album is simple and unpretentious: Each song is a salute to someone or something that Mike likes. That includes everything from Bob Dylan (“Ode to Bob Dylan”) to metrosexual rednecks (“Rub-a-Bubba”) and, naturally, songwriting itself (“Lost Without Music”). Fresh and optimistic, Tributes demonstrates the virtues of looking on the bright side of life.


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