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Album Review: Heart of the Rain
Karen FitzGerald
Cover image of the album Heart of the Rain by Karen FitzGerald
Heart of the Rain
Karen FitzGerald
1999 / Turquoise Rain Music
58 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
New age pianists are fairly easy to come by, but finding one with something special to say and a unique way of saying it is not so easy. Karen FitzGerald’s debut album is a lovely surprise. Her melodies tend to be fairly simple, but are beautifully fleshed out, indicating her extensive classical roots. Karen cites George Winston and Liz Story as major influences on her music, and while those influences are certainly there, the voice is Karen’s alone. The music is intensely personal, but is also accessible and open. Fan of Winston’s and Story’s music should really enjoy Heart of the Rain, as should fans of Wayne Gratz and Robin Spielberg. All but two of the songs are solo piano, and the other two have washes of synth to add subtle color. “A Rainy Night Outside Your Door” is probably my favorite piece on the CD, with it’s flowing rubato and poignant sadness - I also like the unpredictability of parts of the melody line. “Moods” is also exceptionally strong both musically and emotionally - it is thoughtful and introspective in the first few minutes, and then gets darker and deeper. Karen’s elegant pianism really comes through on this piece. “The Wind’s Lament” is gorgeous, with a dark, pensive mood. The three pieces I mentioned specifically are 7-10 1/2 minutes long, and have a spacious quality as well as the feeling that they had time to be fully explored and developed. The shorter pieces are also excellent (especially the touching “Lullaby” that closes the CD), but these longer works are exceptional. I highly recommend Heart of the Rain!
April 4, 1999
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Debut AlbumsKathy's Favorites: 1999
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