Favorite Icon, Full size
Album Review: Elegant Piano Covers
Christine Brown
Cover image of the album Elegant Piano Covers by Christine Brown
Elegant Piano Covers
Christine Brown
2021 / Key Image Music
52 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Elegant Piano Covers is pianist/composer Christine Brown's third collection of solo piano cover tunes (a fourth one is releasing soon!), some of which include snippets of classical pieces - something Christine has a real knack for! I have been fortunate enough to review all nineteen of Christine's full-length albums and have always loved her music whether it is her original piano solos, Christmas music, or her solo piano covers. Christine's graceful touch on the piano keys is always expressive and colorful, and always a pleasure to listen to. The thirteen pieces on Elegant Piano Covers date back as far as 1967 (Louis Armstrong's "What A Wonderful World") to within the past couple of years and, of course, the classical pieces go back much farther. What I really appreciate about this series of albums is that I think Christine Brown clearly demonstrates the fact that good music is good music no matter when it was composed. Still, it takes a little something special to put well-known classical pieces together with pop songs and make them work together so seamlessly. I should mention that Christine released all of the tracks from this album as singles as well as on the full album.

Elegant Piano Covers begins with Lewis Cipaldi's "Someone You Loved," a poignant song expressed simply but with a lot of heart - a beautiful beginning! Billie Eilish's "When the Party's Over" appears to be the most popular song from the album on Spotify and with good reason. Christine's touch on the piano keys is just as emotional as Eilish's voice without the use of any words. Kansas' 1978 hit, "Dust in the Wind," includes passages from JS Bach's Prelude #1 in C - a gorgeous match! "No Time To Die" is a second Billie Eilish cover and also expresses deep emotion in the beautiful melody - a favorite! I also really like Christine's arrangement of Chris Isaak's 1989 "Wicked Game," a darkly evocative song that became Isaak's signature song. Also exceptionally popular on Spotify is Christine's lovely pairing of John Lennon's "Imagine" and Louis Armstrong's "What a Wonderful World," a stirring and eloquent medley that serves as a powerful reminder during these challenging times. Ed Sheeran's "Shape of You" is combined with Chopin's "Valse in C# minor Op. 64 No. 2" - an unlikely mix that flows beautifully and expressively from one to the other. Bill Withers' soulful 1972 R&B hit, "Ain't No Sunshine," was a favorite all those years ago, and Christine's version is equally soulful but in a very different way. An expression of loss and longing, the lyrics and Withers voice drove the message home, but Christine accomplishes that just as well with her empathy and soulful piano fingers - a great ending to a great album!

Elegant Piano Covers needs to be heard to be fully understood and appreciated, so pick up a copy or stream it, and prepare to be impressed! It is available from ChristineBrownPiano.com, Amazon, Apple/iTunes and streaming sites including Spotify. Both thumbs up!
April 1, 2023