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End of the Day

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Album Review

This is a one-woman music show from soup to nuts. Canadian Shirley Eikhard composed and arranged all material, performs on a variety of instruments (electronic and acoustic), recorded the album in her home studio, and produced the album. Much is made of her country music beginnings, but she now makes contemporary jazz her home. This album departs from previous efforts which focused on her singing ability. Here she clearly wanted to spotlight her instrumental capacity. She plays, among other things, guitar, saxophone, harmonica, bass, and apparently the synthesizer to create background strings. The use of the latter on "End of the Day" to prop up her harmonica results in a sumptuous, textured sound which seems to be the hallmark of many of the tracks on the set. This cut recalls days when Larry Adler used to perform with such classical groups as the Boston Pops. Technically there are two vocals, but they are of the same song, "Some New Thrill," which combines urban blues and a bit of funk. She even does her own background vocals on this one. A delicate string guitar is the trademark of "Song for Lesley," done with a touch of Brazilian beat. "Detour Home" is the vehicle for an art deco, Ernie Waits-like sax backed up by vibes (or keyboards) and strings. Eikhard's imaginative, inventive ways come through on each track. Not only that, but the music provides many very pleasant aural sensations. The music is pretty without being maudlin or cloying, hard to do with smooth jazz-like arrangements. Each piece stands on its own without being like the one that preceded it or the one that is to follow. A tour de force and a virtuous performance, this CD is highly recommended.


Born: Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s

Shirley Eikhard began her multi-faceted musical career at the ripe age of 12 when she was paid 15 dollars to sing "Ode to Billy Joe" and "Early Morning Rain." By the time she was 14, she had nailed a contract as a folk and country singer. In 1972, Eikhard began releasing singles and albums ending in a 1978 Greatest Hits album. After a hiatus of about ten years, she returned as a full-fledged jazz singer with her Going Home for Blue Note, which won the East Coast Music Award. Jazz wasn't new to Eikhard....
Full bio
End of the Day, Shirley Eikhard
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  • €9.99
  • Genres: Pop, Music
  • Released: 22 May 2001

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