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Album Review: A Delicate Joy
David Nevue
Cover image of the album A Delicate Joy by David Nevue
A Delicate Joy
David Nevue
2011 / Midnight Rain Productions
51 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
A Delicate Joy is the twelfth release from pianist/composer David Nevue and his first album of original piano solos in about five years. From the heartwarming cover photo of Nevue’s daughter Noelle in a field of tulips to the last notes of Nevue’s medley of “Jesu Joy of Man’s Beholding” and “Canon in D,” this album celebrates the simple beauties and joys of life. Nevue’s liner notes describe it perfectly: “The music on A Delicate Joy is about living fully and joyfully. It’s about freedom from worry, and about walking in faith, knowing God has all things in His hands. It’s about love, family, and spending precious time together enjoying God’s creation. It’s about making the most of every single moment, because there isn’t a moment to lose. Every moment matters. Life is a treasure to be enjoyed.” All but two of the fourteen pieces are Nevue originals. The other two include the medley mentioned above and Nevue’s arrangement of the traditional Irish song, “Down By the Sally Gardens.” I have to admit that I’ve always been partial to Nevue’s darker music, but these pieces sparkle and dance, radiating the happiness of a peaceful heart and soothing our cares away.

A Delicate Joy opens with the title track, a reflective and gently flowing piece that could be a prayer or meditation set to music. “Traveling Light” has a lighthearted lilt that hasn’t a care or worry in the world. The simple melody and left hand rhythm pattern in “The Garden Swing” create a tranquil interlude - effortlessly kicking back and doin’ nothing. “A Vision in White” was inspired when Nevue saw his toddler daughter in a white dress as a flower girl in a friend’s wedding and thinking about how she would be walking down the aisle in her own wedding sometime in the future. Bittersweet and introspective, this is one of my favorites. “My Happy Dance” was inspired by Mike Strickland’s “foot-tappin’ music” and is quite different from most of Nevue’s other music. It fits this album perfectly both theme-wise and musically - free-flowing fun. “A Tiny Heartbeat” conveys the wonder and awe of hearing a baby’s heartbeat for the first time. The swirling and carefree “Happily Ever After” is a more-restrained yet effusive happy dance. “Hand In Hand” is a simple, heartfelt love song - slow, melodic, and honest. Love it! “Under the Setting Sun” is my favorite track. I love the gentle ebb and flow of the peacefully rolling rhythm and sensitive melodic line. I can’t wait to play this one myself! “Jesu Joy Canon in D” is an effervescent ode to joy that combines the two classics with Nevue’s improvisations and interpretations, ending the album with a happy smile.

David Nevue has created another gem with A Delicate Joy! It is available from davidnevue.com, Amazon, iTunes, and streaming sites like Spotify. Recommended!
October 3, 2011