Despite such strong evidence as the likes of Bob Dylan and Jules Shears, a bad singer does not always equal a great songwriter. And make no mistake: Actor Billy Bob Thornton is one hell of a bad singer. He mumbles, whispers and moans throughout Hobo vainly searching for the suitable tone to accompany some unexpectedly sturdy country blues. Basically, he sings like an actor and writes with an actor's approximation of songwriting, never really getting far beneath the surface. Still, Thornton has several CDs to his credit (as does David Hasselhoff) and was making music long before he came to fame. Sincerity aside, Hobo is good for an actor, light years beyond such tripe as Robert Downey Jr. Songs like "I Used to be a Lion" and "Your Blue Shadow" offer pleasant grooves and competent playing, and as a whole, Hobo proves that Thornton is proficient at his hobby. Not embarrassing at all, but Thornton is no Kristofferson. Allow him his agreeable diversion, and hopefully he'll get back to making more movies like Sling Blade and fewer like The Bad News Bears.
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