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The Dreaming Fields CD

4.6 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Matraca Berg returns to the world of recorded music with the darkly mysterious roots package The Dreaming Fields. Fourteen years since the Songwriters Hall of Famer released her Sunday Morning To Saturday Night, an album cited as one of the Top 10 Albums in any genre by Time, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, & People, the introspective songwriter creates a collection of songs examining the tides and seasons of women's lives, aches and triumphs.

Review

"One of Nashville's most graceful singer/songwriters." --USA Today

"it sounds like an extension of herself. Beautiful." --No Depression

" ...gorgeous and emotional journey that exemplifies her extraordinary talent." --Performing Songwriter
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 17, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Dualtone Music Group
  • ASIN: B004S3ATZG
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #136,375 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
People could honestly debate the above statement. There are many great country songwriters out there. But Matraca Berg brings a special honesty and humanity to her work that few even aspire to. Rosanne Cash has been mentioned and the comparison is apt -- the humanity, literate quality, and soulfulness of both artists' work are compelling. Ms. Berg is a star, a potential guidepost for all who care about songwriting, and Country music (by any name) that retains and honors its historic grounding. She may have only achieved fame by others having hits with her songs (and there have been many, many), but she is a heart-breakingly beautiful performer with a limited catalog of back albums, all worth owning. She is also thoroughly modern. And an excellent companion for the road. I missed her recording, I am glad she is doing it again. The best album I have heard so far this year. Take a chance. Buy it now.
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With Matraca Berg writing so many songs for other country artists, in recent years we haven't had as many opportunities to hear her sing her own songs. The Dreaming Fields is a nice return for her. I've seen it categorized a few places as "folk," but to my ears most of these songs still sound like country. It is country in the vein of Rosanne Cash's music or the like, singer-songwriter stuff. Listen to "Clouds" with its exquisite pedal steel work, and see if it sounds like country or folk to you. I'm going with country. One nod in the other direction, the wistful title tune, does have a traditional folk air to it.

The song lyrics to all eleven of these songs are available on the artist's web site, along with songwriting credits. I noticed that several of Matraca's peers have joined her in writing the new tunes, including Gretchen Peters, Deanna Carter and Suzy Bogguss. There's also a song co-written with actress Mary Steenburgen, "Fall Again."

Ms Berg is in good voice on The Dreaming Fields, and the backing musicians are all excellent. Among my favorite new songs are the sweet "Oh Cumberland," "Racing the Angels" (which sounds Emmylou Harris-ish, and is an instant classic), and a bluesy-funny number, "Your Husband's Cheating On Us." The whole album is good, though.
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We have waited a long, long time for a new album and Matraca did not disappoint with The Dreaming Fields. A favorite among singer-songwriters. Meaningful lyrics in a voice that is not off the cookie-cutter assembly line from which so many more commercial artists seem to come.
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Prime Cuts: Clouds, Oh Cumberland, A Cold, Rainy Morning in London in June

Like a moth to a flame, over the years many artists just flock to record Matraca Berg's compositions. These singers do come from the whole spectrum of genres including Linda Ronstadt ("Walk On"), Reba McEntire ("The Last One to Know"), Kenny Chesney and Grace Potter ("Me and Tequila"), Sara Evans ("Fool, I'm a Woman"), Trisha Yearwood ("Lying to the Moon") and Gretchen Wilson ("I Don't Feel Like Loving You Today"). A listen to Berg's first record in 13 years "The Dreaming Fields" will reveal the reasons why Berg has been such a much demanded scribe. Her songs unfold like juicy gossips from a women's magazine where she chronicles for us the stories of love, deceit, anguish, pain and the fear of getting old. Most importantly, Berg does not just sing; she makes us feel the emotions that brim beneath the surfaces of each track. Berg has a way of helping us feel that these are more than just songs. Rather, they are life stories coming out of the pages of our lives--some of which are so nebulously painful yet so profoundly articulated that they soothe our pains. Such is the beauty of this disc. But Berg is more than just a stellar writer, when she steps up to the microphone she is equally mesmerizing. Her plaintive tenor in her vocals emphatically draws us effortlessly into each syllable leaving a bittersweet aftertaste that becomes so alluring.

The tracks that do excel are the ballads, especially the heartbreaking kind. Thankfully, they exist here in spades. Check out the lonesome folk ballad "If I Had Wings," a forlorn tale about an abused wife who finally had the courage to fight back.
Read more ›
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Honestly, I was a little underwhelmed by this CD on first listen. I ordered ahead of time direct from Dualtone because I wanted an autographed copy :-)

I've had this on in my car more or less constantly for 3 days now, and any initial doubts have gone. There aren't songs that jump out at me the way there were on "Sunday Morning..." but each number here is thoughtful, intelligent, and honest. It's won me over big time. Her voice sounds like nobody else, and there's something 'intimate' in how these tracks are recorded that helps them burrow in if you'll give them a chance.
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After listening to the samples, I was captivated by the beautiful voice of Matraca Berg . There was not a song in the batch that was one you would want to skip and that is a rarity . She is a gifted singer/songwriter and I would classify the songs are country/folk - some more folk than country and some more country than folk , but all are very special .
I can already tell that this is a very special CD - one you will listen to for years to come so buy it now while it is being offered at such a huge discount on the price .
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