Songs I Love So Well

Songs I Love So Well

3.5 4
by Phil Coulter
     
 

Irish music superstar Phil Coulter -- the man behind bestselling Celtic new age albums like Sea of Tranquility, Highland Cathedral, and a number of Bay City Rollers songs -- returns to his favorite task, songwriting. Raiding his own catalogue, the composer sings and plays keyboards on 14 gems that mine the deep Celtic folk tradition of meaningfulSee more details below

Overview

Irish music superstar Phil Coulter -- the man behind bestselling Celtic new age albums like Sea of Tranquility, Highland Cathedral, and a number of Bay City Rollers songs -- returns to his favorite task, songwriting. Raiding his own catalogue, the composer sings and plays keyboards on 14 gems that mine the deep Celtic folk tradition of meaningful lyrics. Intensely personal and occasionally sentimental, Coulter's songs confront difficult subjects. "My Old Man" addresses a father's death; the wrenching confession "My Boy" explains an impending divorce; and "Scorn Not His Simplicity" was written in 1973 to come to terms with his son's Down syndrome . "Keep a Candle in the Window" was inspired by the story of a runaway child, while "Yesterday's Men" shares the wrenching hardships of a factory closing. Two songs -- "The Man from God Knows Where" and "The Town I Loved So Well" -- address the tragic political situation in Ireland; the latter was voted one of the best songs of the millennium by the Irish people. Coulter's songs are easily accessible, with healthy streaks of raw emotion and tender sentiment. His piano accompaniment is strong yet elegant, with just enough keyboards, guitars, and background vocals to fill out the picture and bring the stories alive. It's enough to make one homesick for the Emerald Isle -- a sentiment that Coulter foments even more with "Home Away from Home," "Take Me Home," and "Going Home for Christmas." The Songs I Love So Well may be a bit too syrupy for some, but the master tunesmith's songs are refreshingly honest and evocative.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Zac Johnson
Pianist Phil Coulter fills the songs on Songs I Love So Well with his warm Irish brogue as well as his familiar contemporary keyboard style. Large string sections soar beneath his romantic tales of love lost and remembrances of home. While Coulter's debut 1983 Classic Tranquility was entirely instrumental, his live shows usually incorporated one or two vocal numbers. Over the years, the requests for his vocal pieces began to overwhelm the requests for his instrumentals, hence the impetus for this album. Coulter himself admits his limitations as a classic singer, but the warmth and honesty of the man expressing himself through the songs written by his own hand far outweighs any technical abilities he lacks. Most of the songs revolve around the traditional Irish longing for home ("Take Me Home," "Home From the Sea," "The Town I Loved So Well"), as well as several songs about the pain of unrequited love ("I Loved the Ground," "Keep a Candle in the Window"), all with a gruff sentimentality somewhere between Van Morrison and Leonard Cohen. While the musical feel of these songs is closer to adult contemporary, the underlying essence is pure Irish romance.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/13/2001
Label:
Shanachie
UPC:
0016351531629
catalogNumber:
53016
Rank:
10270

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