These Streets

Paolo Nutini is a 19-year-old singer/songwriter who's been making waves in the U.K. for the better part of the past year, and now with the release of his debut album in the U.S., he's starting the process all over again here.

Despite their Italian name, the Nutini family has lived in Paisley, Scotland (near Glasgow, and also once home of '70s hitmaker Gerry Rafferty), for at least four generations. His great-grandfather opened the fish and chip shop in Paisley which his parents now run, and in who's footsteps Paolo expected to follow until a chance circumstance when another performer was late for a concert led to Nutini taking the stage, landing a manager, and eventually, to a record deal.

Raised on a diet of Scottish folk music, boogie woogie piano, R&B artists like the Drifters and Ray Charles, and singers John Martyn and Van Morrison.

His debut album showcases his emotive vocal style, aided by producer Ken Nelson, who has also worked with Coldplay, Ray LaMontagne, and Badly Drawn Boy.

The CD begins with the fine "Jenny Don't Be Hasty," a rocking song about an encounter with an older woman (of the mature age of 23). Other standouts include the doomed love song "Last Request" and the regretful "Rewind," both autobiographical relationship songs.

From upbeat tunes to romantic ballads, These Streets is packed with nifty songs and showcases a promising young songwriter.

Mike Sauter, WYEP Music Director