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Don't I Know

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Not that Maura O'Connell has lost any of her heart-tugging Irish tenderness, but on her tenth solo album, the former DeDanaan lead singer showcases some urgent vocalizing with a throaty, bluesy edge à la Allison Moorer and musical textures that incorporate southern rock, Irish, and country flourishes. Meaty songs -- by the likes of Jim Lauderdale & Leslie Satcher, Mindy Smith, Kim Richey & Tim Krekel, and Gary Burr & Patti Griffin -- form a narrative arc that finds O'Connell pondering life's vicissitudes from emotional extremes. She brings the songs to life with her expressive, husky voice and the stirrings of her heart, producing passages of exquisite ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Not that Maura O'Connell has lost any of her heart-tugging Irish tenderness, but on her tenth solo album, the former DeDanaan lead singer showcases some urgent vocalizing with a throaty, bluesy edge à la Allison Moorer and musical textures that incorporate southern rock, Irish, and country flourishes. Meaty songs -- by the likes of Jim Lauderdale & Leslie Satcher, Mindy Smith, Kim Richey & Tim Krekel, and Gary Burr & Patti Griffin -- form a narrative arc that finds O'Connell pondering life's vicissitudes from emotional extremes. She brings the songs to life with her expressive, husky voice and the stirrings of her heart, producing passages of exquisite beauty. On Burr & Griffin's "Up and Flying," which she does at an ominous, moody pace, O'Connell rages against the stasis in her life as she ponders a lover who has moved on without missing a beat. The propulsive drive and soaring choruses of "Trip Around the Sun" frame a determined vocal testimony that finds O'Connell verbally shrugging off the things she can't control and trying to see a better day ahead. On the roiling ballad "Hold On," O'Connell engages in an internal dialogue aimed at giving her a reason to keep breathing in the face of destructive tendencies. The spare arrangement and tantalizing slide guitar and keyboard support on Mindy Smith's "Going Down in Flames" is an apt commentary on the anguish described by the lyrics, which O'Connell brings to life with a vocal that's alternately weary and enraged. Producer Jerry Douglas does O'Connell proud with judicious arrangements that enhance the mood but never overshadow the singer, who proves herself a magnificent vessel for conveying a multitude of complex emotions.
All Music Guide - Zac Johnson
Maura O'Connell continues her winning streak on Don't I Know, inviting some of the industry's best songwriters and studio musicians to highlight her spectacular voice. Although she began her life and musical career in Ireland, O'Connell has one of the most uniquely American voices in Nashville today, and her choice of material has long been the only thing rivaling her voice as far as quality goes. This album is no exception, as O'Connell honors songs by Patty Griffin, Tim O'Brien, Jim Lauderdale, Kim Richey, and newcomer Mindy Smith, who provides a strong contribution in "Going Down in Flames." Working again with producer Jerry Douglas, O'Connell has similarly surrounded herself with some of the best musicians in the contemporary folk family, including Viktor Krauss, Edgar Meyer, Russ Barenberg, and of course Douglas on Dobro and lap steel. Highlights include "There's No Good Day for Dying" and the Patty Griffin song "Up and Flying," both of which are soul-baring explorations into love, life, and moving on in one way or another. The album culminates in the stark and haunting "Time to Learn" which, although darkly minimal, offers glimmers of sunlight and hope in the cracks of the stone walls her songs construct.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/11/2004
  • Label: Sugarhill
  • UPC: 015891397924
  • Catalog Number: 3979
  • Sales rank: 171,481

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Maura O'Connell Primary Artist, Vocals
Russ Barenberg Guitar
Jerry Douglas Dobro, Lap Steel Guitar
Edgar Meyer Bass, Double Bass
Gabe Dixon Organ, Keyboards, Hammond Organ, Clavinet, Hammond B3
Viktor Krauss Bass, Bass Guitar
Gerry O'Beirne Guitar
Carmella Ramsey Background Vocals
Harry Stinson Background Vocals
Cheryl White Background Vocals
Gabe Witcher Fiddle, Violin
Bryan Sutton Acoustic Guitar, Bouzouki, Guitar
Jonathan Trebing Electric Guitar, Background Vocals
Shannon Forest Drums
Don Johnson Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Jerry Douglas Producer, Audio Production
Jim Lauderdale Composer
Pat Alger Composer
David Clayton-Thomas Composer
Tim Krekel Composer
Gary Burr Composer
Stephen Bruton Composer
Neal Cappellino Engineer
Jim DeMain Mastering
Patty Griffin Composer
Tim O'Brien Composer
Kim Richey Composer
Bil VomDick Engineer
Jason Lehning Engineer
Robin Lerner Composer
Leslie Satcher Composer
A. Anderson Composer
Hillary Lindsey Composer
Mindy Smith Composer
Troy Verges Composer
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