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Pamela Richardson | Spaghetti Midwestern

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Pamela Richardson

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United States - Illinois

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Folk: Folk Pop Easy Listening: Love Songs Moods: Solo Female Artist
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Spaghetti Midwestern

by Pamela Richardson

Essence of roots music brought alive by innovative arrangements and Pamela Richardson's beautiful alto voice. Contemporary pop with a strong dose of 60s folk rock.
Genre: Folk: Folk Pop
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Wingtips
3:56 album only
2. Through the Window
3:09 album only
3. Leaves
4:50 album only
4. Glimmer and Flame
4:15 album only
5. Wandering Ivy
3:29 album only
6. Tulips in the Stones
4:26 album only


Album Notes
If one were to judge solely by appearances, Pamela Richardson might be dismissed as just another folk singer with an atypical but lovely alto voice. But those first observations can be deceiving. Though her songs are lyrical and steeped with emotion, Richardson foregoes the quixotic tradition of the folk singer and instead writes songs of the heart. Love and loss in all their myriad shades make up her palette, and she paints her stories masterfully.

Richardson makes no apologies for love songs. Hers are not the schoolgirl crushes and peons to the first time broken heart. Her songs are the intimate confessions of a woman who has learned a thing or two the hard way and lived to tell. When some folk singers aspire to such openness, it frequently comes across as self-indulgent or mannered. Richardson pulls it off with the calm assurance of a veteran heart.

Richardson grew up in Indiana, in the shadow of the famous racetrack. Raised on the music of the British invasion and 60s television, Richardson became a pop culture junkie at an early age. Her music hints at glimpses of the bored Midwestern girl, dreaming of escaping the room wallpapered with Beatles and Monkees photos. You can almost hear her older brother's band practicing from the garage.

It was from this setting that Richardson began her musical journey, culminating in her EP CD, Spaghetti Midwestern. The songs bear her trademark stamp of full-blown emotion, and benefit well from the sympathetic performers. Former Slaughterhouse Five bandmate Sarah Kelder trades off flute licks with fiddle player Adam Moe on "Wingtips". "Through the Window" features Everlyesque harmonies, as well as fine guitar work by Chicago ace Ric Salazar. "Leaves" and "Wandering Ivy" are enhanced by the sensitive piano work of Matt Walters. "Wandering Ivy" is a standout, finding the musicians at the top of their game. The song is a haunting elegy to late Badfinger founder Pete Ham and features one of the most beautiful endings you will hear this year. The CD closes with the lovely and simple "Tulips in the Stones"-a dark, hypnotic love song that showcases Richardson's unique style.

Sometimes it takes awhile for artists to come into their own. Far too many performers fall by the wayside with their best work never realized. Listening to Spaghetti Midwestern, one senses the patience and dedication that Richardson has shown in getting to this point. One also sees that songwriting skills, like fine wine, can ripen with the years.



to write a review

Illinois Entertainer

Melodic folk pop
Beneath the veneer of the typical folk singer, Pamela Richardson touches a deeper chord on Spaghetti Midwestern. "Leaves" is simple acoustic strumming and piano, allowing Richardson to pour out her heart with delicate precision, ("How I tremble with fear at my journey alone/Will I ever surmise what I need to be home?") She possesses an earthy voice with a resonance similar to PJ Harvey, and is capable of expressing a fluid range, from the haunting echo in "Wandering Ivy" to evocative yearning in "Tulips In The Stones."


Innovative, diverse
It's so refreshing amidst the veneer of respectable Americana to hear an unusual (read: unpredictable) instrument, and seconds into the new record by Chicago based singer-songwriter Pamela Richardson, a flute carries you off into the realms of early Chicago (the band) and Jethro Tull but with a genuine air of originality thanks to Richardson's beautiful alto vocals, ear for harmony and innovative arrangements. With highlights such as the atmospheric "Wandering Ivy," sounding more English folk than American country, it's a genuinely satisfying and diverse collection worth investigating some more.

Rikk's Revues

Folk recording with essence of roots music
The complete package offered by Pamela has only one main drawback, it needs to be longer! The beautiful musical landscape transcends through time and space as you are drawn in to the stunning performance and the depth of the songwriting. After just one listen it is obvious that Pamela Richardson may evoke thoughts of folk music past, but she does it with her own flair and style.

Charlie Flossmore

I really liked this CD a lot. The songs are very emotional and the performances, particularly the vocals and piano are terrific. I'm already looking forward to the next release!


The kind of songwriting we should all aspire to
Spaghetti Midwestern is seems a musical contemplation, introspective, but not self-indulgent. Richardson's lyrics are never predictable, always thought-provolking and poetic. "Through the Window" is haunting and multi-dimensional. "Leaves" plays like a daydream. "Wandering Ivy" is a beautiful tribute. The songs on this CD are unlike anyone else's, but their easy complexity brings to mind artists like Elliott Smith and Jack Johnson while the harmonies are more reminiscent of the Byrds. Richardson's unique alto voice combined with her masterful songwriting make this a must-have for any fan of the folk genre.