Learning to Love
Tom Wopat’s handlers are skittish that record reviewers will hold his television role as a backwoods buffoon on The Dukes of Hazzard against him. That’s the least of his problems. Wopat, who now lives in Nashville, has two previous albums that testify to his desire to be a country singer. But on Learning to Love, he again shows little affinity for authentic country music, delivering the bulk of his pseudo-Nashville material with all the subtlety of a musical-comedy star belting it out for the zillionth row. The good-time ”Too Many Honky Tonks (on My Way Home)” makes a rousing start, but after that he’s saddled with too many cardboard songs — ”Back to the Well,” ”Red Hot Love (in a Blue-Collar Town)” — and a production sensibility that at best seems cartoonish. On the whole, this album is about as believable and affecting as an episode of Wopat’s old show. And a lot less fun.