Tried and True

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Tried and True
Studio album by Clay Aiken
Released June 1, 2010
Recorded 2009–2010
Genre Pop
Length 41:44
Label Decca
Producer Alex Christensen, David Novik, Quiana Parler
Clay Aiken chronology
Playlist: The Very Best of Clay Aiken
(2009)Playlist: The Very Best of Clay Aiken2009
Tried and True
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars [1]
Billboard Positive [2]
CBS News Positive [4]
USA Today Positive [3]

Tried and True is the fifth full-length studio album by Clay Aiken, released on June 1, 2010. This album is Aiken's first on the Decca label. The deluxe edition includes two additional tracks plus a second disk with behind the scenes video and a live performance.[5]


The songs on this album are classics from the 1950s and 1960s. "Unchained Melody" and "Mack the Knife" were performed by Aiken when he was a contestant on American Idol's second season. In an article written after interviewing Aiken, The News & Observer reported that "... the album features a guest turn by saxophonist and label-mate David Sanborn on the Sammy Davis Jr. classic 'What Kind of Fool Am I?' [sic] Vince Gill performs guitar on Andy Williams' legendary 'Moon River.'"[6]


Commercial performance[edit]

The album, selling 22,000 units in its first week, made its debut on the Billboard charts at number nine on the Billboard 200 and number twenty-one on Billboard's Digital Albums.[7] In Canada, the album debuted at number 58 on the Canadian Albums Chart, the lowest debut in Canada for any of his albums.

Critical reception[edit]

The album received positive reviews. Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic gave the album 3 out of 5 stars, saying "It’s handsomely tailored music that fits Aiken’s strengths quite well. Indeed, he’s never seemed more at home on a record; nothing may challenge him but he’s never straining, seeming happier singing standards than he did churning out contemporary classics on A Thousand Different Ways, winding up with something that might be the best representation yet of his peculiar charms."[1]

Track list[edit]

Looking like a worn sleeve from a 1950s or 1960s LP, the Tried and True album art lists the songs included on the front cover.[5]

Standard edition[edit]

  1. "Can't Take My Eyes off You" Written by: Bob Crewe, Bob Gaudio 3:18
  2. "What Kind of Fool Am I? (featuring David Sanborn) Written by: Leslie Bricusse, Anthony Newley 3:31
  3. "It's Only Make Believe" Written by: Jack Nance, Conway Twitty 3:13
  4. "Misty" Written by: Johnny Burke, Erroll Garner 4:18
  5. "Mack the Knife" Written by: Kurt Weill, Bertolt Brecht, Marc Blitzstein 3:21
  6. "It's Impossible" Written by: Armando Manzanero, Sid Wayne 4:02
  7. "Unchained Melody" Written by: Alex North, Hy Zaret 4:51
  8. "Suspicious Minds" Written by: Mark James 3:49
  9. "Crying" (duet with Linda Eder) Written by: Joe Melson, Roy Orbison 4:05
  10. "There's a Kind of Hush" Written by: Les Reed, Geoff Stephens 3:00
  11. "Moon River" (featuring Vince Gill) Written by: Henry Mancini, Johnny Mercer 4:11
  1. Deluxe edition[edit]

  2. "Who's Sorry Now?" Written by: Bert Kalmar, Harry Ruby, Ted Snyder 3:47
  3. "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do" Written by: Neil Sedaka, Howard Greenfield 2:58

    Bonus tracks[edit]

  4. "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me" (iTunes exclusive) Written by: Pino Donaggio, Vito Pallavicini, Vicki Wickham, Simon Napier-Bell 4:12

Disc 2 (deluxe edition)[edit]

  1. Behind The Scenes Look: The Making Of Tried And True 6:22
  2. Build Me Up Buttercup (Live) Written by: Mike d'Abo, Tony Macaulay 2:59

Additional personnel[edit]

  • Linda Eder (appears courtesy of The Verve Music Group)
  • Vince Gill (appears courtesy of MCA Nashville)
  • Dave Sanborn (appears courtesy of Decca Label Group)
  • Pete Beachill - Trombone (Tenor)
  • Gordon Campbell - Trombone (Tenor)
  • Andy Wood -Trombone (Tenor)
  • Dave Stewart - Trombone (Bass)
  • Andy Mackintosh - Flute, Saxophone (Alto)
  • Stan Sulzmann - Flute, Saxophone (Alto)
  • Dave Bishop - Clarinet, Saxophone (Tenor)
  • Ben Castle - Clarinet, Saxophone (Tenor)
  • Jeff Daly - Saxophone (Baritone)
  • Mitch Dalton - Guitar
  • Mark James - Guitar
  • Steve Pearce - Bass (Electric)
  • Mark Hodgson - Double Bass
  • Martin Gordy - Percussion
  • Simon Gardner - Trumpet, Flugelhorn
  • Noel Langley - Trumpet, Flugelhorn
  • Mike Lovatt - Trumpet, Flugelhorn
  • Derek Watkins - Trumpet, Flugelhorn
  • Pete Murray - Piano
  • Ralph Salmins - Drums
  • Quiana Parler - Background vocals, vocal production (Tracks 7 and 11)
  • G-Strings Orchestra (Track 9)
  • Thomas Bowes - Violin
  • Jonathan Rees - Violin
  • Vicci Wardman - Violin
  • Anthony Pleeth - Cello
  • Chris Walden - Arranger, Conductor, Trumpet, Flugelhorn, Soloist
  • Jesse Vargas - Arranger (Tracks 3 and 9)
  • Ben Cohn - Arranger (Track 7)
  • Carl Marsh - Arranger (Track 11 and 12)
  • Alex Christensen - Producer
  • Isobel Griffiths - Orchestra Contractor
  • Vlado Meller - Mastering
  • Jochem van der Saag - Mixing
  • Vincent Soyez - Photography
  • Dave Novik - Executive Producer, A&R
  • Paul Altomari - A&R coordination
  • Amy Merxbauer - A&R administration
  • Evelyn Morgan - A&R administration
  • Tom Arndt - Package Coordinator
  • Denise Trotman - Package Design
  • Fanny Gotschall - Art Direction

Recording and mixing[edit]

  • Angel Studios, London, UK
  • Home Studios, Hamburg, Germany
  • Universal Mastering Studios, New York City, NY
  • Additional vocals
    • Soundpure Studios, Durham, NC (Track 7)
    • Strange Cranium Studios, New York City, NY (Track 9)
    • Osceola Studios, Raleigh, NC (Track 11)


  1. ^ a b Stephen Thomas Erlewine (2010-06-01). "Tried & True - Clay Aiken | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-06-28. 
  2. ^ "Clay Aiken, "Tried & True"". Billboard. 2010-05-21. Retrieved 2014-06-28. 
  3. ^ [1] Archived August 11, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Clay Aiken: New Album Is Like a Homecoming". CBS News. 2010-06-04. Retrieved 2014-06-28. 
  5. ^ a b "Clay Aiken's 'Tried and True' track listing". 2010-04-05. Retrieved 2014-06-28. 
  6. ^ Ehlers, Matt A classic move Newsobserver. March 12, 2010. Retrieved 2010-04-05
  7. ^ 'Tried and True' Clay Aiken debuts in the Top 10 USA Today. June 09, 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-09