In the Life of Chris Gaines could've been a great cultural train wreck, on a par with KISS' The Elder and John Denver's Dreamland Express. Those moves to reel in an audience took a lot of balls, more balls than Brooks will ever clack together in this lifetime. Had he succeeded, it might've been the across-the-board fluke hit that Thriller was, pulling in all the disaffected country and rock fans who don't know what to listen to anymore.
Many of Garth's favorable Amazon.com reviews say he took a big risk here. A wig and a showcased falsetto? Is that all there is, my friends? Had the "brotha'" risked it all, then maybe Garth might've merited for real this phony Amazon.com review that devious eBay seller Fat Al penned in the hopes of unloading his used Chris Gaines CD for more than the usual $5:
"This is the best album of all time. The Beatles wish they could have been as innovative as this."
The CD sold for 10 bucks. Right on, Fat Al! Garth Brooks as Chris Gaines: "Does a Natalie Cole wig and some old Dan Fogelberg songs make me a rock star?"All that's missing is the overbite: Brooks as Queen's Freddie Mercury.