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Town to Town

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Album Review

Strange as it sounds, Tanya Savory loves America. She communicates an abiding affection for the land, the people, town and county histories and bits of imbedded culture that we tend to find only in our most reverent occasional literature. Unlike countless folk-rock bands and artists who claim to write from the "heartland," Savory seems to intend to write for the heartland, tapping into valves and arteries that help her identify the source of her inspiration, the figurative location of her audience and her predominating sense of American self. Pop confessionals and laments about wayfaring loves gone awry have little to do with the concerns on this record: on "Big Town," for example, the singer takes on the persona of a grieving elderly woman whose former city of promise and security has shriveled and disappeared into the ether of modern American promise and forget. "When the River Rose" is another ballad, sung in the wake of a wasting flood by a farmer in his empty field, expecting reprieve from nowhere. These songs are portraiture, simple and reverberating, with little pretense or forced intensity. Subjects like lost time, technology and the unraveling of family color the sentiments within without abusing the testimonial language of simple loss and revocable faith in the earth. The stylings are arguably folk in the bluegrass, rather than country-western, tradition, and Savory's voice has a clarity and strength reminiscent of revolutionary mid-century folk singers. Savory's message is one of urging and remembrance, and her songs are valuable cultural parcels that should be tended as carefully as moments that might otherwise disappear.

Biography

Born: Louisville, KY

Genre: Biography

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Folk-pop singer/songwriter Tanya Savory began attracting notice in 1994 after winning the Emerging Songwriter Competition at the annual Napa Valley Music Festival; her 1996 victory at the Kerrville New Folk Songwriting Competition solidified her reputation as a talent to watch, and a year later...
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Town to Town, Tanya Savory
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