|Dimensions||21 × 15 × 1.5 cm|
John Broomhall; Vince Brophy; Scott Cook; Craig Dawson; Graham Dodsworth; Humbug; Jennifer Lees; Kerrie Maguire; David O’Connor; Judy Pinder; Putty Road; The Trouvers; Fay White.
A follow-up CD with 13 songs about life through older eyes, by 13 different singers, all of whom have featured on the folk scene for many years, and are all of an age to appreciate the theme and understand the truth of the songs.
Pass It Along (S.Cook); Only Remembered (Trad/J.Tams); Brunswick Road (S.Groves); Between the Moon and the Sun (V.Brophy); I’m Going Home (C.Dawson); Growing Old (G.Francis/P.Hicks); Truthful Lines (F.White); Old Age of a Reprobate (B.Scott/J.Broomhall); Passing Me By (G.Dodsworth); Next Time Around (D.O’Connor); Too Busy (K.Maguire); Druthers (D.O’Connor); The Parting Glass (Trad)
CD Review by Sue Robinson
“Life’s a bitch, and then you die”.
This mantra of the reckless or bitter, is often quoted to squash introspection. But a lot happens during any life that is neither rotten to the core, nor a prelude to our final departure; and learning from experience is what teases out those gentler, happier memories for acknowledgement and enjoyment.
Senior Moments Too, is a CD from musicians who have that experience and have learnt from it. But I have found my memories of a longish life so far, more likely to raise a chuckle than a sigh of regret over lost opportunities.
Senior Moments doesn’t seem to have seen too much of life’s lighter side. While the CD on the whole leans a bit too far towards gentle regret for my tastes, the playing is fine, the harmonies just right, the melodies lovely and the songs, taken individually, first rate.
It is clear that the musicians in the CD are experienced and highly skilled.
Ah but the topics! Take Druthers, from David O’Connor. It’s a gently regretful song about “taking no chances, avoiding extremes.” But he says: “I’ve got a swag of impossible dreams. The man on the inside is not what he seems.” and he is not willing to take any further risks in future, though his resolve is tinged with regret: “Now I’ll be sensible, live out my years, trimming the hairs in my ears, and dreaming my druthers,” he says.
Next Time Around by Putty Road is another gentle story song about those important things people don’t find time for. “Billy made wild love to Annie, just in his head, never in bed.” Poor Billy, Poor Annie. And why don’t they get together now? Does being older preclude any chance of romance? Really??!
The Trouvers perform, Growing Old, a song about a woman who has it all, including the rich husband and the toy boy, but she can’t enjoy it because she’s scared of growing old.
Some songs contain advice of the “Don’t make the same mistake I did” variety, others just advise. Pass it Along, by Scott Cook, talks about the secrets in nature and the need to listen, “Let’s be gentle with this place,“ he urges. “May it land in careful hands when we’re gone. We carry it for a moment, time won’t loan it to you for long, you don’t own it, pass it along.”
Because most of the performers are positioned as advisors or tellers of cautionary tales, their view of older age misses any hint that it can be a good thing – offering wisdom, experience, confidence and – let’s face it – fun.
The only song on the CD that I found to actually celebrate the achievement of age was The Truthful Lines from Fay White, an acapella celebration of how a woman wears her age with pride. “She’s 59, and she tells stories full of lifetime, full of honesty and heart.” sings Faye, “and in her eyes, you see her passion and compassion and a quiet sort of pride.”
In Between the Moon and the Sun, Vince Brophy, celebrates childhood memories of roaming and exploring with his dad.
In Brunswick Road, Humbug remembers happy younger days. “We thought the streets were paved with gold down Brunswick Road,” they sing.
In Passing me by, Graham Dodsworth, offers his formula for success; “I live life to the fullest, I try to stay alive, I take risks, but I always survive. I keep life from passing me by.”
It’s a well-made CD. It’s a clever concept. The songs are all individually well worth a listen and some will become favourites. But choose when to listen to it right through – it could be a bit of a gentle, pretty, musically-adept downer.
4 in stock