The Bird Who Sings Freedom is Georgia Lewis’ first album release and is a real musical storybook of love, romance and the trial and tribulations of relationships. Her versatile singing style is superbly suited to such a varied selection of songs each presented with emotion and feeling.
Sensitive and serene, challenging yet positive, this album brings together songs which both complement and contrast. It is testament to Lewis’ considerable skills and talents that these bind so well together into what is a very enjoyable album.
Inspired by her grandparents’ experience of war time parting, her original composition Until One Day captures the emotional turmoil of being parted. Atmospheric fiddle, guitar and percussion conjure up pictures of loved ones waving farewell by the dockside, whilst Lewis’ vocals, rich in depth and emotion, complete this touching, original watercolour painting of a song.
In contrast, Trees They Do Grow High is a traditional song believed to have been written about the young laird of Craigton, who at a very young age was married off to an older woman and died some short time later. Whilst a rather sober story this track is a really enjoyable and uplifting interpretation of this old Scottish song. An excellent arrangement of whistle, guitar and fiddle support Lewis’ spirited delivery.
Taking a well-known traditional song and placing it in a totally new musical setting can prove a risky venture, however Gypsies is Georgia Lewis’ rather inspired interpretation of Raggle Taggle Gypsies. She makes this song her own with syncopated rhythms, flamenco-inspired stepping and crisp, clear vocals. A fresh, creative and enjoyable approach to this folk classic.
Throughout the album Lewis exhibits significant skill in interpreting each song and adapting instrumentation, arrangements and singing style to produce an authentic and varied listening experience. This is particularly evident in Must I Be Bound, a stripped back intimate rendition of a delicate Irish song where the young woman laments the loveless relationship she finds herself in. The gentleness of Lewis’ singing and the solitary piano accompaniment combine to immerse the listener in the deep emotion and pathos of this lovely song.
Georgia Lewis is a consummate musical storyteller and in The Bird Who Sings Freedom she successfully delivers a collection of songs that engage and immerse the listener. She demonstrates a willingness to experiment in her music both in its settings and style, resulting in a fresh new approach to traditional music.
A very enjoyable first album from this exciting artist.Andy McMillan
Released on Rootbeat Records on 28 July 2017.
Produced by Georgia Lewis and Josh Clark.
1. The Bird Who Sings Freedom
2. Until One Day
4. Stonecutter Boy
5. True Lover
6. The Unfortunate Lass
7. Wife of Usher’s Well
8. Must I Be Bound
9. Trees They Do Grow High
10. A Royal Game
11. Lady Diamond