First, I have to say I am hugely grateful that Keith's new album is now on spotify. As I have grumbled before, my sad little DVD player, which is also the only CD-playing device I own, no longer has functioning speakers. My computer has no optical drive, so the combination meant that if I was to listen to a CD it would have to be with headphones for speakers. Having this long-awaited album on spotify means I can listen to it while actually moving around my apartment, not tethered by a headphone cord to anything. I know it may cut into sales a bit that it is available on this service, but hopefully its accessibility will attract a lot more fans. And, for whatever it's worth, I can add now his songs to my weekly playlists without fudging the rules. I don't know how many people actually listen to songs I recommend on this blog, having no way to track any of the after-effects of my posts, but so far Keith's album is as amazing as I imagined it would be and no doubt he'll feature in quite a few weekly lists this year.
I am actually blogging while listening to Keith's album for the first time, and am all of 3 songs into it so far. Yes, I love "Daisy Fields". This is just a song I really liked as a song from the first time I heard it on youtube, as a song. I am impressed so far with the covers I've heard, too. I had not really been able to imagine "The End of the Innocence" as a Keith song, because I loved that song when it originally came out years ago with the really cool MTV video. I've been singing along to that song for literally decades, so trying to stuff it into what I knew of Keith's musical range was tough. But, of course, having only seen Keith as a Celtic Thunder guy, with a few random youtube videos taken out of context, I had no idea of his true range, clearly. None of the covers on this album so far are carbon copies of what the original or earlier renditions sounded like- they are all very decidedly Keith Harkin's music. And, all the songs I've heard so far are radio-worthy.
I won't subject whatever actual readers I have to every thought I have while hearing this whole album- I suppose if Keith reads this he might actually appreciate hearing what I think in more detail, but most everyone else might be a bit less enthusiastic about such a post. Long story short, I could easily fall madly in love with the Keith Harkin his album reveals, if only he was not too young for me and a celebrity I'll probably never get to really know. A huge influence keeping me going towards making music writing/promotions more of a career has been that I might then have a career through which I could meet cool people like the Celtic Thunder guys, not as a fan, but as a person on more equal footing. This is even more true listening to this album. I don't know yet how it'll happen, but somehow or another I hope to be meeting Keith as a music industry person, maybe for an interview or even just one of those friendly networking contacts the music world seems to be held together by.
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In answer to Keith's often asked question, now that I've restarted the album for its second hearing, my favorite songs on this new album- "Daisy Fields", of course, and probably "Here Comes the Sun", which I actually don't like so much in its original form cause it gets too repetitive. Keith's version stays interesting all the way through, and is perfect for his voice. I do wish this album featured Keith's complicated guitar intros a bit more, and it seems like "Nothing But You & I" is set at too fast a tempo, but these are minor things. It's a gorgeous collection of new music, from a sexy and very nice blond Irish man, and I hope he brings his solo tour through Fort Collins next year, or at least Denver, so I can see him do these and whatever other tunes he wants to sing here.