Personnel includes: Tim McGraw (vocals); Biff Watson, Larry Byron (acoustic guitar); Brent Mason, B. James Lowry, Michael Landau (electric guitar); Paul Franklin (steel guitar); Aubrey Haynie (fiddle); The Nashville String Machine (strings); Steve Nathan, Jeff Babko (keyboards); Glenn Worf (bass); Lonnie Wislon, Peter R. Thomas (drums); Chris Rodriguez, Gene Miller, Curtis Young, Faith Hill (background vocals).
Producers: Byron Gallimore, James Stroud, Tim McGraw.
SET THIS CIRCUS DOWN was nominated for the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Country Album. "Grown Men Don't Cry" was nominated for the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance.
Don't hate Tim McGraw because he's married to one of the most glamorous women in contemporary country music (Faith Hill). Don't hate him because he wears a ten-gallon hat and sings about "The Cowboy In Me" while utilizing more image consultants than a Vogue fashion shoot. Hate him because he's so damn good at what he does. Whether you're an old-school country traditionalist or a card-carrying McGraw disciple, you can't deny the seamless production, hook-filled songcraft, and flawless vocal and instrumental performances that make up SET THIS CIRCUS DOWN. As on previous efforts, McGraw amiably combines country convention with pop-rock production. From the widescreen nostalgia of "Telluride" to the acoustic guitar-based ballad "Angry all the Time," CIRCUS handily picks up where 1999's A PLACE IN THE SUN left off. If you're overtaken by one of these songs on your car radio one day, we dare you not to sing along.
Entertainment Weekly (4/27/01, pp.114-5) - "...McGraw's career-defining work....With rumbling electric guitars and a vocal delivery that makes it feel like an early-90s Springsteen outtake....a solid, upright country act..." - Rating: B