11 Songs

EDITORS’ NOTES

Orchestras and pop are a tricky combination—an ensemble can overwhelm material written for a solo artist, especially when that artist trades in modest heartland tunes. But this collaborative effort from South Africa–born troubadour Gregory Alan Isakov avoids that peril. Gentle string swells buoy his rich vocals on the swooning “Saint Valentine”; tender pizzicato follows the lead of his banjo on “The Stable Song”; exquisitely warm brass drives toward a triumphant emotional climax on “Amsterdam.” Here, the symphony defers to the songs.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Orchestras and pop are a tricky combination—an ensemble can overwhelm material written for a solo artist, especially when that artist trades in modest heartland tunes. But this collaborative effort from South Africa–born troubadour Gregory Alan Isakov avoids that peril. Gentle string swells buoy his rich vocals on the swooning “Saint Valentine”; tender pizzicato follows the lead of his banjo on “The Stable Song”; exquisitely warm brass drives toward a triumphant emotional climax on “Amsterdam.” Here, the symphony defers to the songs.

TITLE TIME
5:16
3:08
4:35
6:09
3:09
3:21
3:18
4:46
4:07
4:24
2:59

About Gregory Alan Isakov

Singer/songwriter Gregory Alan Isakov was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he began touring with a band at the age of 16 before eventually relocating to Colorado to hone his chops as a solo artist. Influenced by the rural blue-collar lyricism of artists like Bruce Springsteen, Kelly Joe Phelps, and Leonard Cohen, it wasn't long before Isakov's own blend of dusty folk and moody Americana began turning heads. He released his debut album, Rust Colored Stones, in 2003, followed by Songs for October (2005), That Sea, the Gambler (2007), and The Empty Northern Hemisphere (2009), the latter of which spawned the single "If I Go, I'm Goin," which appeared in the fourth season of the popular Showtime series Californication. Arriving in 2013, The Weatherman included the singles "Time Will Tell" and "Suitcase Full of Sparks," the latter of which was featured on an episode of the popular NBC crime thriller The Blacklist, and in 2016 he released the ambitious Gregory Alan Isakov with the Colorado Symphony, which saw him reworking material from past albums with a full orchestra. ~ James Christopher Monger

  • ORIGIN
    Johannesburg, South Africa
  • BORN
    1979

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