A Review of the CD
"Life"
by david m. bailey


"Life"
by david m. bailey

Copyright 2000 - ISGCD2021
ISG Records
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This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 8/00
"Kevin and Maxine’s Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"
http://www.kevindmccarthy.com/music/index.html
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Death. We know we all have to confront this fact of life at some point in our lives. But through luck, grace, chance, karma, or whatever, we rarely have to face it front and center so early in our years, and we secretly harbor the hope to pass on swiftly and painlessly after a long and fruitful life. But if it's pronounced that our lives will shortly end, how would we react? Would we create to the fullest, seek to fulfill long lost dreams, insure that our families knew of our love for them, attempt death-defying activities, consume ourselves with mind-altering substances to blunt the pain of the cold, hard truth? A myriad of options are there for the choosing.

david m. bailey, a survivor of brain cancer that's currently in remission, has selected the creative route, issuing his fourth release in as many years. An introspective collection of life-appreciative truths and observations, the grist for his songwriting mill remains the small, quiet, seemingly insignificant but too often overlooked moments and thoughts that get lost in this rush we call life.

Highlighted by its pleasing chorus, "Summer Song," opens the release with bailey employing an analogy comparing the clear comfortable conditions brought on by the literal arrival of summer and the figurative dissipation of inner personal murkiness. The chorus goes:

Backed by gentle piano and offering a breezy rhythm, "Swan Song," is a quiet reminder that we never know which moment will be our final one. bailey cautions:

The most intriguing cut is "The Painter and the Poet." The song's protagonists debate which has the greater value--a painting or a poem? The painter opens by asking the poet if a picture is truly worth a thousand words? The poet responds that black and white might be worth a hundred, color possibly twice that much. The painter advances that the Mona Lisa could never be put into words. The poet counters with the desire to know all the things daVinci heard. Eventually an artistic duel is proposed--pen versus brush--to be decided by a jury of peers. A painting and a poem are created but before the judging can take place, the young son of one of the judges begins singing and shrinks the debate down to size:

"What the Rainbow Sounds Like" is a nature-based reverie. bailey closes it with:

A reply to a question of his meaning of faith, "So Much More," ends with these thoughts:

The interesting "If I had Another" lays out what bailey would do with his life if he had one week, one day, one hour, one minute or one second remaining to live.

There's a fuller sound on many of the cuts than in bailey's past releases, thanks to multi-instrumentalist and producer Chris Rosser's integration of multiple instruments, along with bailey on his usual acoustic guitar. bailey has continued his gentle and sometimes provocative insights with this offering. This is his best yet.

bailey on lead vocals and acoustic guitar, is assisted by Joe Ebel on violin; Chris Rosser on percussion, guitar, keyboards, bass, recorder and background vocals; and Lynn Rosser, Anne Lalley, Jimmy Landry and Josh Lamkin on background vocals.

Track List:

All songs by david m. bailey.


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