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Hello Cruel World

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iTunes Review

Gretchen Peters is country music royalty, having written material made famous by artists like Trisha Yearwood, Faith Hill, Martina McBride, and George Strait. Her earthy vocals and expert way with arrangements make her own recordings compelling listening. As the title implies, this is an album that searches the darkness. A close friend's suicide, along with other trials, have her looking life in the eye with a sense of pain and a need to somehow beautify the ugliness. Guests such as Kim Richey, Rodney Crowell, and Will Kimbrough inform her sound. "Life is still a beautiful disaster" she sings on "Dark Angel" with Crowell, while "Saint Francis," cowritten with Tom Russell, evokes a biblical sense. "Paradise Found" turns up the blues. David Henry's cello can be heard sawing through this and the title track with a foreboding sense. The piano ballad "Camille" (written by Peters, Matraca Berg, and Suzy Bogguss) takes an honest look at the disturbing truth that follows victims of sexual abuse. These are heady, uncompromising tunes delivered with no fanfare, just integrity.

Customer Reviews

Beyond Great

By far her best work. A must have recording which you wil treasure.

A masterpiece

In a career brimming with stellar songs from a unique perspective, this is unquestionably Gretchen Peters' finest hour.

Hello Cruel World is dark and sad, brave and beautiful. There is loneliness and regret, and there is the redemption and refuge found in true companionship. It is true. It is life.

Make no mistake, this is a collection of songs that leans toward the darkness. That makes the cracks of light throughout all the more enlightening. Besides, as Mary Chapin Carpenter once said, "you can't know the light without the darkness."

Tastefully understated production and arrangement serve the songs perfectly, and the musicianship is simply outstanding.

This album will get inside you, and I suspect that it will not leave you anytime soon. It is a brilliant and intimate reflection on life and living in what is indeed a cruel world.

Somehow, the world seems a bit less harsh with this music in it.

Brilliant, sharp lyrics, great vocals, intelligent music.

OK, I always knew of Gretchen Peters. Being a lyric junkie, I knew of You Don't Even Know Who I Am, On A Bus to St. Cloud, Let That Pony Run and (of course) her Independence Day (popular by Martina). This album has it all. I have been blown away by the complex lyrics, the melodies. This is an important CD. It is not for the faint of heart, as the lyrics are dark and deep and intelligent. As a huge fan of Rosanne I would say this is GP's "Interiors". Being around the same age as GP there are times when what she has written beings back some welcome (and not so welcome) memories. I can not chose a favorite cut, but really love Idlewild, Paradise Found, Matador, Dark Angel, title cut. 5 minutes, oh well, all of them I would give this CD 10 stars if allowed. STANDING OVATION.


Born: November 14, 1957 in Bronxville, NY

Genre: Country

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Known as a writer of intelligent and introspective songs in the country/folk/pop vein, Gretchen Peters achieved renown through country stars covering her material. Among the artists to have hits with her songs were Trisha Yearwood, Pam Tillis, George Strait, Martina McBride, and Patty Loveless. Peters was born in Westchester County, New York, and lived there until her parents divorced when she was eight, at which point she moved with her mother to Boulder, Colorado, where, as a teenager, she wrote...
Full Bio
Hello Cruel World, Gretchen Peters
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Customer Ratings