Michael Frey | Close To Home

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United States - California

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Folk: Modern Folk Rock: Americana Moods: Featuring Guitar
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Close To Home

by Michael Frey

Contemporary, eclectic folk/r&b centered around masterful acoustic guitar work and songcraft, and rich in Americana roots.
Genre: Folk: Modern Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Makin' It Up
3:49 $0.99
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2. Way Out In The Desert
5:17 $0.99
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3. Nothing Love Wouldn't Cure
4:50 $0.99
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4. Chasin' That Dollar Down
3:03 $0.99
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5. Cupid & Pan
3:46 $0.99
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6. Old Soul
4:09 $0.99
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7. Anymore
4:26 $0.99
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8. Late Bloomer
3:30 $0.99
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9. Take It Back
3:11 $0.99
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10. The Bayou Teche
4:20 $0.99
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11. Not Too Sweet
4:32 $0.99
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12. Light On The Valley
3:21 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
From this seasoned musician and dedicated artist comes a most noteworthy contribution to the world's ears and your CD collection.

Michael Frey's "Close To Home" is an inspired collection of the best of his newer songs and his first album in several years. Long awaited by his fans, this recording spans an appealing variety: from one song to the next you hear accordion, mandolin, Hammond organ, frailing banjo, electric guitar, piano, sax, lap steel, bass and percussion. Always at the center of the mix is Michael's masterful acoustic guitar and resonant voice. His guitar work, both fingerstyle and flatpicked, is solid, complex and sensitive, and he's a warm, natural, inventive singer. Hints of The Band, Bruce Cockburn, Ry Cooder, David Wilcox and others may come to mind, but the end result is purely Michael Frey.

Frey has spent most of his adult life in California and the Southwest, with forays in Britain, Ireland and Washington, DC; this may account for the freely eclectic quality of his music. But he grew up in the southern air of Florida's Gulf coast and Louisiana's Cajun country, and these roots add a special depth and earthy color to the mix.

The songs on "Close To Home" tell about the passage of time, about beauty, loss, inspiration, and life's universal quandaries. There's one about that almighty dollar, one about starting late in life, one about the old hometown being changed forever by "progress". There are songs about how love can heal, how it can fool you, how sweet it can be. And tales that take you across the open plains, into red rock canyons, down along the bayou, and home again.

From thoughtful to playful, funky to elegant, the music of Michael Frey is, in the words of music critic Josef Woodard, "a listener-friendly package". And guitarist John O'Connor (Higher Octave Records) says these songs "just get better with repeated listening".

You're invited to get "Close To Home" and see (hear) what they mean.

************
CD Review By Walt Rego in the Santa Barbara Independent, Jan. 9, 2003

"Michael Frey has been one of Santa Barbara's more predictably enjoyable and kindly songsters for years, and his new CD is a good primer in the range of his work. Folk may be his general purpose category, but Frey freely surfs other subcategories, from James Taylor-colored tunesmithing to easy-does-it New Orleans music sauce on "Chasin' That Dollar Down" and "The Bayou Teche." Romantic escapist instincts, and a nice chordal twist, prevail on "Way Out in the Desert" and a nice Band-ish tang shows up on "Nothing Love Wouldn't Cure" and "Late Bloomer." A fine guitar player who resists the temptation to overplay, Frey sings without pretense and colors these tracks with contributions from some of the finest players on the block, including Brian Mann on organ and Bill Flores on this and that."
--Walt Rego, Santa Barbara Independent

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Reviews


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Don Regal

Great detail and craftmanship
Beautiful authentic and uplifting messages.Really enjoyed the instrumental, found my self getting lost with the purity of Michaels playing. Excellent blend with the band. Great recording excellent detail with all the instrumentation. Truly a great 1st. album, looking forward to the next one.
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Bob Bonanno

Very sincere and down to earth.
I am not a certified music critic but I do appreciate effort and quality. His words, music, and arrangments hit very close to home. Normally I will buy a CD to obtain a couple songs I like with the rest being fillers. Michael's CD surpassed my expectations in that all the songs were not just meaningful but rich in depth. I had the privilege of playing music with Michael nearly 40 years ago but he has taken this CD to the next level. The sincerity of his voice is only surpassed by his musical ability. The added beauty is that all the songs are written by Michael. I hope that he continues this gift and produces more CD's. This CD is not only genuine but totally refreshing.
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Rene

Present to Michael Frey
Hi
Was great to get your CD. Our team at work gave it to our supervisor named Micheal Frey.
We also where positively surprised about the songs!
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Michael Petracca

Impeccable musicianship, big heart!
I'm a pop culture critic and not a music reviewer by profession, so in reviewing Michael Frey's new album, "Close to Home," I prefer to talk about how this CD makes me feel, rather than analyzing its technical
elements. It isn't big news that music helps create emotional states. The first Sex Pistols album, with its anarchic rants, might make one want to bomb a church. By contrast, when I hear Bob Marley sing, "I feel like bombing a church," strangely enough I do not feel like bombing a church, but rather giving the shabbily dressed hobo on the street a big hug. Go figure. So it is with Michael Frey's new album: It creates an overall mood of peace, in the same way that an all-instrumental album of Cyril Pahinui on slack-tuned guitar might. This overall mood is somewhat
unusual, since the album's song list covers a vast range of acoustic sub-genres, from rootsy Delta blues, to cajun gris-gris, to Afro- and Latin-tinted gentle percussiveness, to meditative contemporary folk; yet
underlying all this variety are Frey's genial lyricism and his deep, rich, unforced, spot-on vocalizing, which transport the listener...where? Friend, all I can tell you is it's a better place, and if you listen to "Close to Home" while driving on the freeway, even that testosterone-jacked 4-by-4 monster truck riding your ass won't break the spell. I know, because it happened to me. In short, I recommend this album, both for its impeccable musicianship and its heart. You won't be
disappointed.
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Anny Eastwood

Get this albvum and hear: lyrics that remind us to have compassion and a sense o
Quite simply, Close to Home is one of my favorite albums of all times. In the 3 years that I have had this album, I still listen to it regularly. For me to be able to say this about any album means that it speaks to me on all levels, not just when I am in a particular mood.

On a musical level, the instrumentation is tasteful, truly beautiful and laced with catchy melodies. However, unlike an irritating jingle, these melodies feel good in the body and carry messages that are an invitation to life and love.

His lyrics remind us that indeed we are “making it up as we go,” to have compassion for ourselves and a sense of humor about our humanness. I can’t help but laugh at myself when he sings about “late bloomers” or “if wishes were horses, we would never have to walk…I’ve got a whole herd in my head.”

Michael knows how to paint with words. Vivid images of summer fog, red rocks, sycamores, and “laughing waters” weave through the songs. In fact, one could say this album is a tribute to the beauty and simple wonders of nature. For me listening to it feels like sitting next to a stream.

I am fortunate that I have had the opportunity to see him perform numerous times. I can testify that the intricate picking and full guitar sound is all there when it’s just him singing with his instrument on stage. And like a true master, he makes it look easy.

And last but not least, I never tire of the deep rich tones of his voice. Need I say more? Get the album. You wont regret it!

Anny Eastwood, MFT
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Mary Frey

A superb poetic quality to this beautifully music work.....
I have found that the words sung in Michael's music are beyond the usual and way into the poetic. Songwriting is his best skill, and that is saying a lot when you consider the extraordinary quality of his vocalizing, musicianship and drive to produce a truly fine end product. The hard work in the studio shins a beautiful light on each poem-song, and the effect on my heart is very deep. When I listen, I am especially touched, having been with Michael when he spent time in the places he is describing in this beautiful work.
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