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Ashley Monroe, 'On To Something Good'

The book above which Ashley Monroe's big eyes peep in the first few seconds of this video is a volume of This Fabulous Century, a Time-Life book series published in 1969, organized around decades and celebrating pop-cultural fun from Charlie Chaplin movies to the Andrews Sisters to the Twist. For this optimistic romp of a song from her upcoming second solo album, cool-country darling Monroe takes viewers on a similar visual time trip in vintage outfits like a California-style cutout caftan, leatherette biker chick garb and a thrift store counter's worth of costume jewelry. Monroe presents herself not as some kind of model but as a collector, stacking up vinyl to buy in a record store and driving a classic Pontiac. In the vision she and director Rachel McDonald have created, style is what a woman cultivates to better know the world around her and to move through it with authority.

The sunny rocker "On To Something Good," co-written by Monroe, Luke Laird and Barry Dean, surprised Monroe fans when released as a single in March — it's much more pure-hearted, and frankly commercial, than the honky-tonk hard talk from her 2013 debut album Like A Rose. Moodwise, it's almost like Shania Twain. That's a good thing, though: A confident and pop-adventurous Monroe is one ready to take on the bro-country establishment, and with that new album due in July (around the same time Kacey Musgraves makes her return), this could be a fabulous summer for country's cutting-edge young female stars.

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