31 January 2004
In a mellow mood
The regulars among you will perhaps recognize the name of composer/pianist Vicki Logan, of whose first CD I said this back in November '01:
There used to be a radio format called "beautiful music" which somehow managed to find the blandest orchestral recordings possible. Chasing Dreams would never fit in; it is neither orchestral nor bland. Quiet, yes; soothing, maybe; but there's an intensity here that simply won't retreat into the background. I don't think David Lanz needs to be looking over his shoulder or anything, but if your listening environment can accommodate contemporary piano music that breathes, rather than merely exhales, clear a space for Vicki Logan.
Some space was evidently cleared; her second collection, Finding My Way, peaked at #19 on New Age Reporter's airplay chart in 2003 and finished #82 for the entire year, an impressive showing by a relative newcomer, and one track therefrom, "Enchanted Winds", spent five months on top of the request list at The Service Formerly Known As Spinner.
She sent me a note with her third disc, The Ride:
I'm still going strong and I think getting better as I continue.
I'll never be "rich and famous" but that's okay with me. Being able to do what I love, pay a few bills and find great friends is what success is all about to me.
Can't argue with that in the least.
In the meantime, The Ride is a little more experimental, a little more colorful, in some places even a little more danceable, a mix which very much fits into my idea of what this genre (I once called it "scenic") should be: gentle, but never soporific. Perhaps the most interesting track here is "An Engagement with Time", with dueling sax and guitar over the backbeat, evoking the spirit of Perry Mason in a Town Without Pity; I'd love to hear this behind the 36-hour forecast on The Weather Channel, just to perk up the parade of digits.
"Persistence and patience, hard work and desire," says Vicki Logan. "I guess that's what it takes."