Thursday, March 16, 2006

Gloria J - Wheels Within Wheels

Hear The Track Here

Way back in the mists of time, when the love generation ran out of available drugs, I used to tame my raging beast by listening to certain kinds of acoustic guitarists. I fell asleep after many a fevered week to the calming euphoria pumped out by Fairport Convention with Sandy Denny and Richard Thompson, thrilled to the guitar work of people like Bert Jansch, John Martin, Ralph McTell and many others - all of which introduced me to the rich heritage of English traditional music. It kinda got lumbered with the 'folkie' tage there for a while and these artists are NOT that. When you take music from the 16th century and make it relevant today without ruining it's originally presented sound, that is on a whole different plane.

The reason I say all this is because once you get over the deepness of Gloria J's voice (she is a transgender artist and proud of it), the next thing that will strike you is how 'classical' this track sounds. Despite it's bang up to the moment lyrical message (it appears to be about being transgendered) there is a timeless feel about this elegant and extremely satisfying track that really appeals to me. Put the track against - say - a tale about life during the Napoleonic Wars (1700 on..) and you'd swear this was a track written back then. Both that feel and the extremely fluid acoustic guitar picking that essentially carries the track show that Gloria J is no spring chicken. Nope, this is a musician who has been around the block, around the houses, into the town and back or - put simply - been playing this music for some considerable time.

The more I listened to Wheels Within Wheels the more I warmed to it, for it's musical performance, for it's lyrical content (it is a cracking SONG) and for its vitality. Up until this point I have never come across this artist before but believe me now I know better. For someone who appreciates a good olde English treatment - and I do - this is a track that I will be hanging onto. (Ed: I hope he doesn't say for those moments when the drugs run out...). To say that it is rare for me to hang onto a track of this genre is an understatement, and is a sure indication of the high regard I have for it. For you, I couldn't recommend it highly enough if the above has made any sense to you at all.

Highly Recommended (especially when the drugs run out...)

(Ed: Aaarrrrrgggghhhh)

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