‘Home’ by Janet Dowd - songs with the quality to touch all who hear them(July 21, 2017)
Listening to Janet Dowd, whether singing her own songs or covering the work of other writers, the experience is always one of gentle reflection as she pours so much feeling into song. Her voice has a warm characteristic that reaches out to touch the listener, coupled that to a 'closeness' that comes from her empathy with the lyrics, and the songs on her latest album ‘Home’ have the quality to touch all who hear them.
Opening with Eric Bogle’s ‘All The Fine Young Men’, her voice brings out the song's desperate futility, the same happens with the quiet remembrance of hope pouring through ‘County Down’ by Tommy Sands, as does the longing within Dougie MacLean’s ‘Garden Valley’. The originals include similar powerful messages ... the enduring pull of home and need to become part of your own story through ‘Westport Town’, a sorrowful tale of love, murder and a ghost searching for lost love in ‘Forbidden Love’ and with ‘A Simpler Life’ reflections on that moment we all reach when peace comes through acceptance.
And that’s the essential attractiveness of ‘Home’ ... recognition, understanding, appreciation and admitting life’s vagaries, and living whatever occurs.
Playing alongside Janet on ‘Home’ are Donogh Hennessy (guitars, keys, bass, programming) Alan Doherty (whistles) Jimmy Higgins (percussion) Martin Brunsden(double bass) Naimh Varian Barry (violin & viola) Tom Leary (fiddle) Dessie Kelliher (banjo) Pauline Scanlon and Teresa Horgan (backing vocals) Brendan Goff (piano) and Colin Henry (Dobro).
Review: Tim Carroll