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Fernando Ortega

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Customer Reviews

Surprisingly good

One of the many problems with Christian music is that listeners who like good music are a bit skeptical of anything that comes out of that market. So when the occasional great piece of work is able to get released, it can go by unnoticed by those who would care. It gets washed out in the mass of tediously mediocre product that's thrown at consumers. Mr. Ortega took a risk with this record and I'm glad he did. Maybe someday the Church will once again be a breeding ground for great art but until then we'll have to wade through the mire to find the rare gems.

The Next Level

The evolution of Fernando Ortega's music is evident if you take the time to listen to his work. I'm not talking about his musical skills, as his piano work has always been tremendous, but rather the usage of other instruments to support his work. The early albums were almost all piano, strings and drums were added soon thereafter, additional percussion work, dobro, more intense acoustic guitar work on the "Storm" album, and now we find the next level on the self-titled album where a more alternative country feel is presented through the chosen instrumentation (most evident on "Dragonfly" and "When the Coyote Comes"). What hasn't changed is the prevalence of the piano, the wonderful original lyrics by Fernando and co-writers, and that sedate but beautiful voice. If you listen to CCM radio, you will be familiar with "Take Heart, My Friend" and "Sleepless Night", but this album is about so much more than the obligatory radio-friendly tunes. This album also continues a common theme throughout Fernando's discography; nature. Fernando is obviously hyper-aware of the natural surroundings as much of his songwriting deals with seeing God in nature, but not nature as a god. In addition, "Mildred Madalyn Johnson" and "California Town" take ordinary people and places and weave (something that is dear to the Ortega family :-) a story of the importance of relationships in life. If you buy this album, you will find yourself listening to it time and again and each time finding a lyric that jumps out at you and an appreciation a bit of the music that you hadn't heard even though you may have "heard" it a dozen times.

Better than ever!

Long time Fernando fan here and finally just bought this album. One listen through and my initial impression is that this may be his best album ever. Such an artist.


Genre: Christian & Gospel

Years Active: '00s

Classically trained as a pianist but also steeped in the Hispanic tradition of his New Mexico homeland, gospel singer/songwriter Fernando Ortega recorded more than a half-dozen LPs for various labels before signing to Myrrh/Word in 1997, as part of a Christian musical renaissance which saw a variety of musical traditions entering the liturgies of mainline churches. An aficionado of American and Irish folk as well as the Spanish-oriented music he grew up with, Ortega also studied early music and hymns...
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Fernando Ortega, Fernando Ortega
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