Gretchen Peters

Gretchen Peters

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by Gretchen Peters
     
 

Gretchen Peters has written her fair share of hit songs for other artists. Perhaps she ought to start thinking about keeping some of those for herself, because she's got the spunk and passion to make it on her own, and an earthy, attitude-filled voice similar to Jo Dee Messina's to put the edge on her material. Blending rock propulsion with honky-tonk energy, Peters's… See more details below

Overview

Gretchen Peters has written her fair share of hit songs for other artists. Perhaps she ought to start thinking about keeping some of those for herself, because she's got the spunk and passion to make it on her own, and an earthy, attitude-filled voice similar to Jo Dee Messina's to put the edge on her material. Blending rock propulsion with honky-tonk energy, Peters's songs explore the shadow world of relationships, where answers can be elusive. The sizzling "I Don't Know" lays out all the contradictory emotions while ultimately advising the listener that if it feels good, it probably is. Peters is even more effective when she cools things down. On the Tom Waits-ish "Love and Texaco," she mourns a good man she let go, as her band conjures a woozy ambiance defined by bluesy organ, yearning guitar lines, and quietly thumping acoustic bass. While many of these stories are about "lambs gone astray," as Peters sings in the album-closing confession, "Revival," none of those lambs are left without hope. Ditto the listener.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Chart-topping country songwriter Gretchen Peters filled her own debut album, The Secret of Life, with guest performances by friends in high places such as Steve Earle, Emmylou Harris, and Raul Malo. While the songs were strong, the performances only served to overshadow Peters' true strength: it lay in her own voice singing her songs. On her self-titled sophomore effort, she and producer Green Daniel play it closer to the vest in terms of personnel, while offering a far more adventurous sampling of Peters' wares. Bryan Adams makes a backing vocal appearance, but his is the only name that folks outside the Nash Vegas studio system would be familiar with. Peters stacks her band with veterans, such as longtime keyboard ace Barry Walsh, organist Steve Conn, and guitarist Michael Severs, and she and Daniel handle most of the rest aside from horns and strings. The songs range from the stellar opener, "Souvenirs," with its laid-back hand percussion and Caribbean feel, to rootsy alterna-country like "In a Better World," moody ballads like "Love and Texaco," the truly beautiful and moving "Amelia and Me," the midtempo, lushly orchestrated "Like Water into Wine," and the truly enigmatic "Picasso and Me," which could have been covered by Rickie Lee Jones in her beat days. This is a musical autobiography, a concept recording about coming of age, bittersweet memories, and the haunting of a life with old ghosts. While it didn't even grace the country Top 100, it doesn't matter. Peters, simply because of her songwriting skill (just ask Martina McBride, Patty Loveless, and Trisha Yearwood, to name three artists who've scored number ones with Peters' tunes), deserves to be taken seriously as an artist, one who helped to shape contemporary country while playing both sides of the studio system fence without making any sort of artistic compromise. Her 2007 record Burnt Toast & Offerings was the delivery of the promise on her earlier records, of which this one particularly stands out as a work of real art.

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/24/2006
Label:
Scarlet Letter
UPC:
0618321513323
catalogNumber:
1332
Rank:
45846

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Gretchen Peters   Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Mandolin,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Background Vocals,Electric Sitar
Robert Mason   Strings
Brian Barnett   Percussion,Drums,Drum Loop
Steve Conn   Hammond Organ
David Davidson   Strings
Connie Ellisor   Strings
Dave Francis   Bass
John Gardner   Percussion,Drums
Barry Green   Trombone
Jim Grosjean   Strings
Mike Haynes   Trumpet,Flugelhorn
Paul Kramer   Mandolin
Lee Larrison   Strings
Dave Pomeroy   Bass,Electric Bass
Michael Severs   Acoustic Guitar,Dobro,Electric Guitar
Pamela Sixfin   Strings
Alan Umstead   Strings
Mary Kathryn Van Osdale   Strings
Barry Walsh   Synthesizer,Piano,Keyboards,Hammond Organ
Monisa Angell   Strings
Green Daniel   Synthesizer,Percussion,Piano,Violin,Accordion,Keyboards,Hammond Organ

Technical Credits

Connie Ellisor   String Arrangements,String Conductor
Ken Love   Mastering
Chris Potter   Engineer
David Pinkston   Engineer
Gretchen Peters   Producer
Bart Pursley   Engineer
Green Daniel   Producer,Horn Arrangements

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