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When I saw "Somewhere" at a local store, I bought it immediately. And I mean that. I saw it, I bought it. Within, like, 20 seconds. I didn't know a new Eva Cassidy release was in the works. So discovering this new Eva Cassidy album was akin to tripping over a football-size diamond while groping in the dark for a light switch.
I've been listening to it all morning. And I must say...
No, make that double wow.
These 12 previously unreleased songs (two of them co-written by Eva) are on par with anything on Songbird, Imagine, or Time After Time (my three favorites of hers). The recordings are crystal clear. Her voice is pristine. The arrangements are superb. A few, in fact, are downright show-stopping. The album closer -- "Somewhere" (lyrics written by Eva) is nothing short of astounding. On it, her voice soars, embraces, caresses, builds, uplifts...fitting perfectly with the anthemic music recorded many years after her too-soon passing in 1996.
A new Eva Cassidy album is always a treat, made more rare with each one as the vaults of unreleased tracks are emptied. This album, however, is priceless. Her vocal and guitar recordings were made anywhere from 1987 to 1995 (the bulk of them were recorded in 1995). Yet, they sound as crisp and vibrant as anything recorded today. It's easy to tell that "Somewhere" was created with love from first note to last.Read more ›
Fans of Eva's cover of "Fields Of Gold" will be quick to internalize the heartbreak in "A Bold Young Farmer", sung with trademark vocals which attack the nervous system faster than any virus known to man. Another folk selection, "Red Red Rose", is a close second in this emotional breakdown category because it is sung more true to it's origin as a Burns poem than as a bold ballad. This rose is a true love letter sung as if written on parchment.
The award winning album, Live At Blues Alley, might have been even better had it included two songs from this new album. "Ain't Doin' Too Bad" retains her vocals from the historic Jan 3, 1996 appearance while also adding a new backing by original band members plus a horn section. If you ever wondered what Eva would have sounded like accompanied by the full complement of musicians she deserved this is the answer. Fans of the band will applaud the piano introduction by Lenny Williams, Keith Grimes's guitar solo and Raice McLeod's "made to order" drums. Chris Biondo, Eva's long time producer and band member (bass), is superb in his producing of this track.
Eva's country music fans will immediately notice the Dolly Parton song, "Coat Of Many Colors", and an americana version of Don Hecht's "Walkin' After Midnight". In both songs, Keith Grimes offers sublime support on guitar.Read more ›
While Cassidy left this world much too soon, the body of work that remains is absolutely amazing and would have been so had we not have heard any more from her. The "Somewhere" CD only adds to that legacy. Let it suffice to say that "Somewhere" stands with "Songbird" and all of the "Blix Street" releases that have gone before.
According to the evacassidy dot org website, "Songbird" has gone platinum in the U.S., and an independent film production company, headed in part by Amy Redford (Robert Redford's daughter) has reached a deal with the Cassidy family to do a movie on Eva's life. It should make for a very engageing film with a soundtrack that will leave audiences incredulous as to why they hadn't heard of her before. More importantly, at a time when it seems every mediocre singer receives the "Diva" designation, it will give Eva Cassidy the much wider audience she so richly deserves!
Relatively unknown prior to her 1996 passing at age 33, Cassidy quickly rose from relative obscurity to take on a posthumous life of her own. Her artwork (located at [...]) as well as her music is an incredible gift that her family and friends have chosen to share with the world as a means of celebrating Eva's life and the endurance of creativity in the human spirit. With this album, as in Cassidy's previous work, there is something for everyone. In "Coat of Many Colors", Cassidy becomes the consumate storyteller, turning the work from that of Dolly Parton to her own original style. "Walking After Midnight" will reveal a voice with Patsy Klein's overtones, but with a nuance and style only Cassidy could facilitate. "Chain of Fools" surpasses even the original rendition by the legendaery Aretha Franklin. Those who are familiar with Franklin's work will not be disappointed, but will be utterly captivated by Cassidy's interpretation. Most poignant are the two pieces Cassidy wrote herself--a rarity for an artist who is primarily known for her skillful re-interpretation of others' classic works. "Early One Morning" is a very passionately-sung Appalachian ballad, bluesy and expressively driven. Listen and read the words to "Somewhere" several times, and one can almost detect a self--fulfilling prophecy in Cassidy's own words. "Somehow, somewhere, at some time, someone cared--maybe just for a moment, or maybe for a lifetime."
This album will have listeners caring for a lifetime--about the legacy of Eva Cassidy, and about what life is truly all about.
Love you, Eva!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Well recorded. Eva Cassidy is Eva Cassidy and that says it all.Published 9 hours ago by Edmond Gunny
NPR played a variety of songs and I think I was drawn to her less blues type music. Still, the cd was very good!Published 13 days ago by Amazon Customer
this made up my collection of Eva's singing, another great CD,. very happy to have obtained it.Published 8 months ago by T. Duhig
I have several postumus Eva Cassidy compilations, but had to pick this one up because it has a few songs I just love. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Greg Miller
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Thank you for posting this! I was just about to click to buy it, when I saw your comment. Will do just that--thanks again.
Aug 26, 2008 by The Scrappy Cat | See all 2 posts
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