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Breathe

Dan BernAudio CD
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Price: $15.52 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Breathe + Fleeting Days
Price for both: $25.28

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 19, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Messenger Records
  • ASIN: B000HIP4E2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #158,757 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Trudy
2. Breathe
3. Feel Like A Man
4. Remember Me
5. Suicide Room
6. Tongue-Tied
7. Rain
8. Visit In My Dream
9. Past Belief
10. Another Man's Clothes

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

In the closing track, Dan Bern sings of standing in "Another Man's Clothes." In the opening "Trudy," it sounds as if those clothes are any of Bob Dylan's that Bern can salvage. With its reedy vocals, wheezy harmonica, and midtempo melody evoking the "My Back Pages"/"Chimes of Freedom" era, that cut sounds more like Dylan than any of the generations of "new Dylans" who have preceded Bern. Yet the rest of the album shows a musical range and strength of songwriting that elevates Bern from mimicry. The buoyant rock of the propulsive "Rain," the insistent pulse underlying the riveting narrative of "Suicide Room," and the majestic build of the epic, eight-minute "Past Belief" all testify that Bern is an artist of considerable command as well as worthy influences. --Don McLeese

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thanks, Dan. September 20, 2006
By Sean
Format:Audio CD
Just got it yesterday, so these are the early returns:

When trying to decide whether to buy a new album, most of us want to know: "What genre or artist that I know does it come close to?" While this may be a flawed way to approach a work of art, where listening to it on its own merits would likely be better, the fact is, we do it. It's how we're wired - to put things in boxes, so to speak. So I write this for those out there who are trying to decide whether to spend their money on this work. If you like Tom Petty; if you like Warren Zevon; if you like Jackson Browne (early); if you like John Hiatt; if you like Traveling Wilbury's; you may very well like this - a lot. None of this album is just like any of these other artists, but to me, it sits in similar vein. I think Dan surpasses these other artists in many ways. His lyrics are better than most of them, for example, in terms of their originality and sincerity. As a lyricist, I think of him as often clever and disarming like Costello, but more heartfelt and less likely to seem contrived - perhaps more in line with Cohen , or at times, Guthrie.

Lots of folks dismiss Dan as a Dylan wanna-be. It's a superficially understandable sentiment. Dan can sound like him, and readily borrows some of Dylan's forms in some of his songs. But Dylan, himself, did not make up many of these forms either, but indeed borrowed and synthesized from his predecessors, just like any artist. At any rate, Dylan is in there as an obvious influence, but only a small fraction of Dan's songs could sit on a Dylan album without standing out as obviously unique to any discerning listener.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Talkin' Dan Bern Breathe January 13, 2007
Format:Audio CD
I guess a lot of people compare Dan to Bob because of the superficial aspects of his songs: the traditional folk structure, the voice. Heck, Dan even wrote a song about it, "Talkin' Woody, Bob, Bruce & Dan Blues". After that, though, you've got a songwriter who is completely unique. I love his early stuff, especially the hilarious 50 Eggs. I hope Ani Difranco will produce another of his albums someday. When I started listening to New American Language, I felt that maybe he was growing up, getting more somber. In fact, he was taking his sense of humor and putting it to good use. On his recent EPs, you get the feeling that he has gotten closer to his own voice. "Jail" is as funny as anything on 50 Eggs, but with more depth.

Breathe is a great album. It sounds almost hokey to say this, but I feel like I'm growing alongside Dan, feeling the same things, wondering about the country and the future along a parallel line. The title track is especially poignant. It's easy to tell someone to "breathe, take it easy", but Dan finds a way to make it seem natural and real. His songs don't blare out their messages, they sneak up beside you. They're more like friends than advertisements.

There's a lot of good music being made today. This is among the most personally rewarding.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Breathe' by Dan Bern January 3, 2007
Format:Audio CD
This is probably Dan's most smoothly produced album, but none the worse for that, as he continues to amaze with his consistently high standard of songwriting. If you like Dan Bern you'll like this album. If you have never heard of him this will be a good place to start, followed by 'New American Language' and 'Smartie Mine' and then.........
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than New American Language? February 8, 2011
Format:Audio CD
Dan's probably heard this a million times, but I can't figure out why he's not a household name. The man simply writes beautiful songs.

New American Language, I think, was a milestone for Dan because it solidified the bittersweet, searching feeling that Dan does so well. I think it essentialized what made Dan great. I enjoyed Fleeting Days but it didn't seem to hit the spot for me and somehow I didn't pick this one up until now.

Breathe feels like the proper sequel to New American Language. Dan trades his humor and his penchant for silly, catchy songs like "Honeydoo" for an entire album of beautiful, richly produced and performed songs. What can I say about this? This is music that makes you feel alive, the kind of music where you look around for a minute and just take in the beauty of a moment. This is music that you listen to and constantly find little things that make you enjoy it just a bit more than the last time. Favorites include the title track (a sequel of sorts to "Jerusalem"), "Past Belief," and "Suicide Room."My pick for best song is "Visit In A Dream." It's a simple but incredibly tender song about seeing someone in a dream.

Thanks to Dan for so many great memories with your songs as the soundtrack; this one brings them all back. I sure hope you get your due.
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