CD Review-“Deep” by Elisabeth Williamson
Elisabeth Williamson: Deep and Solo
Haunting, uplifting, soothing, thought-provoking. These are all terms that describe “Deep,” the long-awaited songwriting project from Elisabeth Williamson. Add to these descriptions “classy” and “classic” and we’re getting closer to the truth.
One listener was overheard to say, “Isn’t that a classic forties piece?” The title track will take you back to those times of lilting vocal harmonies and a bouncy tune that invites you to swing. But don’t be mistaken, this album is no retrospective of historical musical styles. Williamson uses whatever melody breathes life into her insightful lyrics, sometimes classic, sometimes unabashedly folky, almost Appalachian, adding up to a style all her own.
We are treated to the poignancy of “Bluebird,” a bitter sweet ballad that reflects on the duty of the artist to express truth in all its sorrow and joy. “Paint the Town” will bring you to your feet to dance with your favorite guy or gal. “The Bell” reaches deep inside as it tells the story of a woman, wondering the fate of her husband on news of tragedy in the mines.
We’ve covered classic, now what’s classy about Elisabeth Williamson? She sings of tragic love, unrequited, and even cheating love—but these are no crying in your beer tunes. Even the saddest of lyrics from “One”, “one tear falls for you tonight” invites a sweet, sad waltz. “Someday” is an up-tempo putting down of a lover who’s left a love that he’ll someday miss.
Playing on the record also as session musicians are members of the Gatorbone Band, expert flat picker Gabe Valla, and Jason Thomas, also fiddler extraordinaire for the Claire Lynch Band, and husband Lon Williamson on upright bass and vocals. Adding their expertise to the mix are well-known Nashville musicians Robert Bowlin and Will Barrow, and mandolin virtuoso Josh Pinkham.
Recently, The Williamsons have added recording and producing to their musical endeavors, establishing Gatorbone Records and completing projects for Grant Peeples, (It’s Later Than You Think and PawnShop), Sharon & Dan Pillen (Like an Oak Tree), and Frank Lindamood (Hewed from the Rock).