Carol's Album was reviewed in the Jan/Feb 2018 Australian Magazine, "Rhythms (est. 1992)".
Despite having its roots in Carol's having to come to terms with the passing of her husband in 2014 and therefore an exploration of her journey from loss, through recovery to new beginnings, Fly Away Butterfly is a remarkably upbeat and celebratory album. The Georgia-born Atlanta-based keyboards player, singer and composer certainly knows how to get the very best out of a tune with truly masterful arragnements delivered by a great collection of hot-shot musicians, including bass player Sam Sims, who really cooks on 'On My Way', keyboards and bass player Trammell Starks, who also provides additional horn arrangements, saxophonist Sam Skelton, guitarist Chris Blackwell and percussionist Rafael Pereira (Royal Southern Brotherhood, James Southwell). The inclusion of her interpretation of the classic Sergio Mendes & Brazil 66 hit, 'Mas Que Nada', acknowledges the most obvious influence on the album, that smooth Latin thing Mendes made his own back in the day - and why not? It still moves and certainly grooves, and if music is meant to uplift as well as heal the worst of hurts, I can't think of a better genre in which to occasionally immerse oneself. - Michael Smith c/o Rhythms
We celebrate Carol's album, "Fly Away Butterfly" as it makes its mark for 15 straight weeks Topping the Billboard Smooth Jazz Charts , Top 5 Smooth Jazz Top 20 and #1 Groove Music 3 weeks.
Thank you to these stations for your support:
Paulding native worked past personal loss to Billboard music charts
By Tom Spigolon Jan 10, 2018 - Marietta Daily Journal
Carol Albert is on a roll.
The Hiram native and longtime classical and jazz musician is on the Billboard music charts with her new Brazilian-influenced, smooth jazz release “Fly Away Butterfly.”
The single “Fly Away Butterfly” entered 2018 in the top 10 of the Billboard Smooth Jazz chart. It also is at No. 4 on the Smooth Jazz Network Top 20 chart and was listed in the RadioWave Monitor at No. 1 Position for three weeks.
She said she is surprised by the response to the song, which is featured in metro Atlanta on such stations as WCLK-FM 91.9.
“I don’t think it’s quite sunk in yet,” she said of its Billboard chart position.
Three singles, “On My Way,” “One Way” and “Fly Away Butterfly” from the album charted on all major Smooth Jazz music charts in 2017.
“One Way,” which is Albert’s take on an Al Jarreau hit, placed in the top 100 of the Groove Jazz chart for 2017.
The Paulding County High School graduate said she used the word “butterfly” in the name of her latest CD after the winged insect became a symbol of hope to her after the 2014 death of her husband from a heart attack as he competed in a triathlon.
“I did have a time of extreme difficulty with the loss of my husband and I think it’s important for people to hear that at any age you can pursue dreams you may have always had, that it’s never too late to pursue those dreams,” Albert said.
In a Facebook post, she said, “I just wanted to share that it’s possible to reach a place you’d given up on years ago.
“It’s possible to keep going when your life has crashed, it’s possible to be successful after you had given up, it’s possible to reach deep inside yourself and bring out your best work when you have felt there’s nothing left to give,” she said.
Albert took up the piano and keyboards at the age of 5. She said she honed her craft by playing keyboards during church services in Paulding County and by accompanying her grandmother, who had lost an arm to cancer.
“When I grew up, Atlanta was really far away,” she recalled.
After studying classical music with Paulding piano teacher Kathy Tibbitts, Albert went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in music from Georgia State University.
She worked as a staff accompanist at Georgia State, as well as at Agnes Scott College, Decatur School of Ballet and the Atlanta Ballet.
However, Albert gravitated toward smooth jazz and new age because of her appreciation for such artists as jazz guitarist Michael Franks and Astrud Gilberto, whose “Girl from Ipanema” was a 1960s classic of the genre.
She said she now favors performing music considered to be smooth jazz rather than the classic and progressive jazz of players like Chick Corea or Wynton Marsalis.
The new CD “takes the listener on deeply soulful, exotic journey that artfully blends spirited, jazzy piano melodies, dreamy vocals, punchy percussion textures and hypnotic ambiences,” according to publicity from the artist.
Her video for “Mas Que Nada” is on YouTube. The song is a remake of the 1966 hit song by Sergio Medes and Brasil 66.
Smooth Jazz Network, which is a collective of jazz-oriented radio stations nationwide, nominated her for its “Best New Artist” award for 2017.
She said the nomination is the biggest music industry recognition ars for her as a recording artist in many years.
She received an Emmy Award nomination in 1991 for Outstanding Achievement and Individual Excellence for composing the music for the seven-part PBS Series “The Well-Placed Weed.”
Albert also was a winner in the New Age Music category of the Global Peace Song Awards of 2016. She also celebrated being on the first round ballot of the Grammy Awards in the Contemporary Instrumental category both in 2016 and 2017.
"Fly Away Butterfly” is Albert’s seventh release of music classified as either easy listening or smooth jazz. The first two CDs were released in the early 1990s by a German label, and the remainder in the U.S. — including two Christmas-themed releases — on small or independent labels.
“Carol Of The Bells” from her 2015 “Christmas Mystique” release charted on Billboard as a most-added song in December 2016. SiriusXM’s Watercolors channel radio stations worldwide played the song during the 2016 and 2017 holiday seasons, she said.
Albert noted music distribution and delivery methods have changed dramatically since her first CD release.
The most common way to find her new CD is on Amazon and CD Baby or through her web site carolbertmusic.com, she said.
A resident of Suwanee, she often tours Europe and South America when she is not composing music or teaching music.
She is a regular performer at the Chateau Elan resort in northeast Georgia and performed at music festivals in Suwanee and the Chattahoochee Nature Center in Sandy Springs in the past year.
Here's a direct link to the article on the Marietta Daily Journal website
Carol's album "Fly Away Butterfly" has been reviewed in the latest issue of Smooth Jazz Magazine (issue: January/February 2018). You can order this single issue or subscribe! CLICK HERE
My album, "Fly Away Butterfly" has 3 song's in the Top 2017 Smooth Jazz Charts. I'm very grateful for all the radio stations below that have made this possible. Thank you very much for your love and support! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year - Carol Albert
Congratulations to accomplished American Jazz/World singer and composer Carol Albert who justly deserves the number 1 spot for her album Fly Away Butterfly. With pretty much everything a cafe could need from an album - chill, jazz, world, instrumental, pop and new age along with brilliant sounds and production the feedback has been very warm and positive.
Fly Away Butterfly hit #18 Billboard Smooth Jazz this week. Additionally, Carol’s is #9 in the Smooth Jazz Top 20 for December 2nd, 2017.
Carol Albert uses music to heal on “Fly Away Butterfly” - By Dodie Miller-Gould
Carol Albert is a vocalist, keyboardist and composer. Her new album, “Fly Away Butterfly” represents Albert’s attempt to resume her music career after tragedy.
An introduction to “Fly Away Butterfly”
Albert’s work on “Fly Away Butterfly” took place after the death of her husband in 2014. The symbolism of the butterfly is clear–change. Having already taken some time off from recording prior to 2014, the tragic loss she suffered served both as a reason to perform, and a means to work through grief.
The CD itself is visually stunning. I realize that is not why people buy music, however, it is worth a look. Deep blue saturates or highlights images of Albert’s face, a large butterfly, also in shades of blue, covers the lower half of her face. On the inside, that same butterfly is poised atop an old-fashioned microphone, and Albert stands behind. She is holding a blue satin sheet that matches the color scheme found elsewhere. The color blue and its representation of sadness, and association with jazz is meaningful here.
The songs found on “Fly Away Butterfly” have a contemporary pop feel to them. Most notable among them are the title track, and “On My Way.” Given Albert’s reason for performing, the content of those songs gain meaning.
“Fly Away Butterfly”
The song opens with a flute’s trill that imitates the flutter of butterfly wings. Albert whispers the title in Spanish. The lyrics center on the title phrase.
Light sounds fill the track. In fact, light sounds fill the album. Albert is not a belter–at least not on this release, and that works here. This song reminds me of a subgenre called “new age jazz.” The purpose is to help listeners relax. As Albert sings, listeners thoughts are colored by the cool blue of the CD cover, and the disc itself.
The music is rich with flute, and it never goes heavy or brassy. Delicate sounds enrich the song’s purpose, and makes the listening that much more enjoyable.
“On My Way”
Heavier than the title track, pop jazz vocals singing syllables dance over the groovy piano. The horns add texture and verve. The backing vocals are a mix of r&b and pop. Albert’s voice is almost too soft here, she is barely heard over the backup singers at times. When the voices take turns singing, Albert is heard more clearly. Her style reminds listeners of pop jazz singers from the 1980s and 1990s–think Everything But the Girl and Swing Out Sister.
As far as the lyrical content goes, Albert is triumphant. She sings about spreading her wings and being on “on my way.” And the sassy saxophone line that fills the end punctuates the words, and listeners believe that Albert will do what she says.
“Fly Away Butterfly” is a light, jazzy exploration of human emotions. Albert makes her private pain public. However, the songs’ form and content allow listeners to ascribe their own meaning to them.
The album is worth a look and a listen. “Fly Away Butterfly” is available Sept. 1, 2017.
Carol's latest album is a great example of smooth jazz, as it is polished and refined within an inch of its life, with a very strong late Seventies feeling throughout. Her vocals are clean and gentle, and the music is exactly what one would expect from the genre (although I must make mention of some strong basswork from Sam Sims). As well as singing, Carol also provides keyboards, and I actually enjoyed the instrumentals more than I did the actual songs, as although the emotion has been removed, these at least have more vitality to them Although I know that there are those who enjoy the genre, it can never be anything more than background music for me. But, if this style of music is of interest then I suggest you visit CarolAlbertMusic.com where you can hear some of the material.
Review by Gonzo Weekly Issue #258
After paving the way with a handful of popular radio singles over the past year, Billboard Artist, Carol Albert brings out a full array of rich jazz and global fusion artistry on her unique concept album "Fly Away Butterfly". The versatile Atlanta-based composer, keyboardist and vocalist takes the listener on deeply soulful, exotic journey that artfully blends spirited, jazzy piano melodies, dreamy vocals, punchy percussion textures and hypnotic ambiences featuring the soaring, inspirational twist on Al Jarreau's classic song "One Way," a contemporary homage to one of her jazz heroes offering up the powerhouse saxophone of Sam Skelton. Fly Away Butterfly will take your musical imagination to many beautiful destinations.
Review by Dee Dee McNeil - Archived here
She’s a singer/songwriter and pianist. This talented woman has recorded a unique and lovely album of her original compositions. She has written every song, with the exception of the very popular “Mas Que Nada” that she plays and sings with silky smooth vocals. This is an easy-listening project, perfect for Smooth Jazz radio airplay. Favorite cuts are: #4, “Across the Sky” that reflects shades of Marvin Gaye and Sadé, wrapped richly in her production and in the arrangement grooves. Cut #5, “One Way” sounds like you should be listening to it while on a highway, driving at maximum speed, and covered by blue skies, sunshine dreams and chasing a ‘Fly Away Butterfly’.
Carol Albert keyboards/bass programming/lead vocals/piano/producer/arranger; Trammell Starks, drum programming/keyboard/producer/horn arrangements; Rafael Pereira, percussion; Sam Skelton, saxophone/flute; Alfreda Gerald, Tony Hightower, Cheryl Rogers, background vocals; Susan Bennett and Ivette Ballara, spoken word Spanish; Sam Sims, Chocolat Costa & Joe Reda, bass; Chris Blackwell, guitar; Melvin Miller & Darren English, trumpets; Scott Meeder & Wayne Viar, drums.
Carol's latest release was reviewed in Spain. Below is the review and the translation. View the archived Review here
Carol Albert es una apasionada del piano y del canto. Originaria de la localidad de Hiram, en el norteamericano estado de Georgia, siendo una niña recibe clases de piano de su abuela, a la que le faltaba un brazo. Ambas se sentaban frente al piano, y mientras su abuela tocaba con la mano izquierda, Carol lo hacía con la derecha. Además de enseñarle a tocar el piano, su abuela también le enseñó a componer canciones. Como era de esperar, Carol pronto se interesa por el piano como instrumento de referencia. Comienza a tocar piano clásico en la Georgia State University donde obtiene una licenciatura en música. En el año 1.991 recibe una nominación al prestigioso premio Emmy. Tres años más tarde, en 1.994, presenta el álbum titulado “Tides Of Change” en el que se incluyen temas como “High Seas”, “To The Sun” o “Beyond Tomorrow”. Más adelante vendrán producciones discográficas tan sobresalientes como “Morning Music”, “Night Music” o “Christmas Mystique”, álbum de temática navideña. Las presentaciones en vivo de Carol Albert son habituales tanto en Europa(Suiza, Alemania, Francia, España, Inglaterra o Irlanda) como en los Estados Unidos (San Francisco, Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia o Kentucky). El pasado mes de Agosto, Carol Albert presentaba su nueva producción musical bajo el titulo genérico de “Fly Away Butterfly”, disco del que se han extraído dos singles: “One Way”, versión original del vocalista desaparecido Al Jarreau y que se incluye en el álbum publicado en 1.988 y titulado “Heart´s Horizon”; y “Mas Que Nada”, tema clásico brasileño versionado por infinidad de artistas y músicos. El disco arranca con el tema que da titulo al álbum, composición que cuenta con el protagonismo de la flauta y el saxo de Sam Skelton. Entre los temas instrumentales destacan “Awakening”, “Chasing Waterfalls” y “Transition”. La vocalista y pianista no olvida incorporar temas vocales que acompaña con el sonido de su piano. Buena prueba de ello es la balada ligera titulada“Across The Sky” o el tema ligero “Never Thought It Would Be This Way”. El tema más movido y rítmico del disco es el instrumental “On My Way”, que aparte de los instrumentos, incorpora voces y coros. A lo largo de todo el álbum, Carol Albert canta y toca piano y teclados. A este nuevo proyecto discográfico de la vocalista y pianista se incorporan músicos de la talla deSam Skelton, Trammell Starks, Rafael Pereira, Sam Sims, Chris Blackwell, Melvin Miller, Scott Meeder, Joe Reda, Wayne Viar, Darren English, Englesson Silva y Chocolat Costa. La brillante presencia vocal corre de cuenta de cantantes y vocalistas como Alfreda Gerald, Susan Bennett, Ivette Ballara, Tony Hightower o Chocolat Costa. La totalidad del álbum es producido por la cantante y Trammell Starks. “One Way”, tema con el que se rinde tributo a Al Jarreau, es producido por Trammell Starks. Todos los temas son compuestos y arreglados por Carol Alberty Trammell Starks a excepción de “Mas Que Nada” y “One Way”. Interesantísimo nuevo proyecto musical de Carol Albert. Es obligado escucharlo.
Carol Albert is passionate about piano and singing. Originally from the town of Hiram, in the North American state of Georgia, as a child she receives piano lessons from her grandmother, who was missing an arm. Both sat in front of the piano, and while her grandmother played with her left hand, Carol did it with her right. In addition to teaching him to play the piano, his grandmother also taught him how to compose songs. Unsurprisingly, Carol soon became interested in the piano as a reference instrument. He started playing classical piano at Georgia State University where he earned a bachelor's degree in music. In the year 1.991 receives a nomination to the prestigious Emmy prize. Three years later, in 1994, it presents the album titled "Tides Of Change" which includes songs like "High Seas", "To The Sun" or "Beyond Tomorrow". Later will come such outstanding productions such as "Morning Music", "Night Music" or "Christmas Mystique", album of themática Christmas. Carol Albert's live performances are common in Europe (Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain, England or Ireland) and the United States (San Francisco, Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia or Kentucky). Last August, Carol Albert presented his new musical production under the generic title of "Fly Away Butterfly", disc of which have been extracted two singles: "One Way", original version of the missing singer Al Jarreau and that is included in the album published in 1988 and titled "Heart's Horizon"; and "Mas Que Nada", a Brazilian classic theme, with a lot of artists and musicians. The album kicks off with the theme that gives title to the album, composition that counts on the protagonism of the flute and the sax of Sam Skelton. Among the instrumental themes include "Awakening", "Chasing Waterfalls" and "Transition". The vocalist and pianist does not forget to incorporate vocal themes that accompanies with the sound of her piano. Good proof of this is the light ballad titled "Across The Sky" or the light theme "Never Thought It Would Be This Way." The most moved and rhythmic theme of the album is the instrumental "On My Way", which aside from the instruments, incorporates voices and choirs. Throughout the album, Carol Albert sings and plays piano and keyboards. Sam Skelton, Trammell Starks, Raphael Pereira, Sam Sims, Chris Blackwell, Melvin Miller, Scott Meeder, Joe Reda, Wayne Viar, Darren English, Englesson Silva and Chocolat are all part of this new vocalist and pianist project. Coast. The brilliant vocal presence runs from singers and vocalists like Alfreda Gerald, Susan Bennett, Ivette Ballara, Tony Hightower or Chocolat Costa. The entire album is produced by the singer and Trammell Starks. "One Way", subject that pays tribute to Al Jarreau, is produced by Trammell Starks. All songs are composed and arranged by Carol Alberty Trammell Starks with the exception of "Mas Que Nada" and "One Way". Interesting new musical project by Carol Albert. He is obliged to listen.
Carol Albert enchanting jazz singer Carol Albert – FLY AWAY BUTTERFLY:
Carol is one of the most enchanting singers I’ve heard in a long time, and there’s a decided plus, in that she plays piano with some of the highest creative energy on the scene today. I recently did a video critique of her work, and you’ll see how professional her standards are there. On the album, high-spirit tunes like “On My Way” convey the kind of joy the world needs more & more of today… a SUPERB song, full of life!
The promo sheets explain that after Carol lost her husband (2014), she turned back to composing, so the music is automatically in the healing zone… don’t take that the wrong way, though… this isn’t “down, sad” music – not at ALL! You’ll hear how her spirit has been replenished as you listen to the wonderful “Transition“, where she clearly paints sonic cascades abundant with the joy of entry into new worlds… a MOST impressive song that gets constant play on my iPhone… I just LOVE this piece.
Though “Across the Sky” starts out with a decidedly jazz solo (think Coltrane), Carol’s vocal easily transports you into a zone where memories become reality – in a good way… some fine, FINE guitar work compliments the saxophone right at about the 2:10 mark, as well. A truly inspiring piece of music that everyone will enjoy!
One of the longer pieces (5:24), “Never Thought It Would Be This Way“, will surface memories both sad and full of the joy of living… it was an easy pick for my personal favorite of the ten offered up. I give Carol a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.99 for this “must-have” CD! Get more information about this fascinating player/singer on Carol’s website.
Review by: Rotcod Zzaj c/o of ContemporaryFusionReviews.com
CAROL ALBERT / Fly Away Butterfly: In the 70s, the gals were doing a subgenre known as divorcee rock. That seems to have mutated in the 10s to healing music, a combination of jazz, world and spirituality that seems to be the soundtrack for recovery of various sorts whether from addiction, loss, upheaval---or divorce. Albert is rejuvenating from loss and letting it lead her to rebirth. Enlisting one of the great secret weapons of our times, Trammell Starks to help her on her journey, this is almost like next gen-nu new age as it comes out of the gate. An experienced performer coming back into the light, this is no mere well intentioned effort by a bored wannabe looking for an outlet, this is the kind of alt.adult listening that turns heads and ears. A deep, personal set that grabs your attention and holds on tight. Well done. - CHRIS SPECTOR, Editor and Publisher
Copyright 2017 Midwest Record
Link to source - click here
Ahh, we are again treated to the wholesome, all-embracing musical charm of the lovely vocalist/pianist/composer Carol Albert who has reemerged with her at once enticing and alluring offerings here on Fly Away Butterfly, an album of intensely satisfying melodies and lyrical colors.
The mesmerizing seduction of this music starts at track one (the title track) and never lets up as she takes you by the hand and leads you along this plush horizon of musical bliss with delicate caresses and high-spirited exoticism and finger-poppin’ grooves like that heard on her covers of the late Al Jarreau’s “One Way” and the classic “Mas Que Nada.”
Aside from “Mas Que Nada” and “One Way,” Albert has penned all of this well-produced material, and it’s obvious that she poured her very essence into the work. One should be warned of the inescapability of the appeal and mystique of this material. This is beauty alive and personified throughout.
Along with the lead and title track, there’s the exotic sway of such catchy tunes as “Awakening” and “Across the Sky,” the funky bounciness of “On My Way,” the beauty and intriguing play on moods found on “Chasing Waterfalls” which leads off in a rather sweet and sedate fashion and later ushers in a spirited crescendo, and the resoundingly comely track “Never Thought It Would Be This Way.”
To sum it up, this album truly defines delicate, refined, and class, and tosses in a track of feel-good funk for good measure. It’s quality belonging in the bright spotlight of this genre. Experience its attraction, and bathe in it with unabashed abandon. It calls for it. – Ronald Jackson c/o The Smooth Jazz Ride
Link to source - click here
Special Thanks to Trammell Starks for encouraging me to write and record again, the many hours of patience in the recording studio, supporting me in the ups and downs through the process, and making me believe it was possible to be successful.
Thanks to all my supporting players on the Album for the extra hours and dedication to making great music.
Thanks to Jason Gorov/Gorov Music Marketing for the caring and successful Radio Promotions achieving Billboard Charting and Worldwide Radio Markets.
Thanks to Allen Kepler/Smooth Jazz Network, Jo Khool/WJKR-DB JO KHOOL RADIO, Graham Johnson Australia Alive 90.5, Lynette White SIRIUS XM Watercolors for believing in me from the beginning. Special thanks to Allen Kepler for feedback of my works in progress and Jo Khool for encouraging me to sing.
A Big Thank You to Kabir Sehgal for such beautiful liner notes.
And Life-Long Thanks to my friends who have listened, encouraged, and supported me through the years and my fans and supporters of my music.
Note From Carol:
"Music was one of my 1st loves from early childhood and has been with me through thick and thin in my life. I can confide all my feelings through it and it will keep my secrets if I want it to. It will tell you what I'm feeling if you wish to listen. It fills my soul and lifts my spirits in good and bad times. I've spent more time with my music than anything else in my lifetime. It only lets me down when I expect too much. I love my family, children and friends but most of all the greatest love of my life is MUSIC." - Carol Albert
We are excited to bring you the New Album:
"Fly Away Butterfly" from Carol Albert.
* Order Now from the Official Carol Albert Store
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Lead Vocals, B/G Vocals, Piano, Keyboards/Synths: Carol Albert
Additional Keys/Synths: Trammell Starks 2, 5
Background Vocals: Alfreda Gerald: 1,3,5,6,8,10 - Cheryl Rogers/Tony Hightower 3,5
Voice Over Spanish: Susan Bennett and Ivette Ballara
Flute, Saxophone: Sam Skelton
Trumpet: Darren English 2,6 - Melvin Miller 3
Guitar: Chris Blackwell 3,4,5,7,8 - Englesson Silva: (Acoustic Guitar #6)
Bass: Sam Sims 3,8 - Joe Reda 4,7 - Chocolat Costa 6 - Trammell Starks: Key Bass 2,5
Percussion: Rafael Pereira
Drums: Scott Meeder 2,3,8 - Rafael Pereira 4,6 - Wayne Viar 7
Produced: Carol Albert and Trammell Starks (Except “One Way” Produced by Trammell Starks),
All Songs Written: Carol Albert (Except: Mas Que Nada, One Way)
Arrangements: Carol Albert
Additional Arrangements: Trammell Starks (Awakening, On My Way, One Way)
Recorded, Mixed and Mastered: Trammell Starks
Published: CAHARA (ASCAP) 2017
Liner Notes from New York Times bestselling author and Multi-Grammy Award winning producer - Kabir Sehgal
Fly Away Butterfly (Liner Notes)
Every so often, an artist comes along that makes you reimagine the possibilities of music. With Fly Away Butterfly, Carol Albert delivers a seminal and sizzling contribution to the artistic sphere, blending lively melodies with thoughtful and refined arrangements. Every song presents not just different sounds but soundscapes in which Carol invites us to inhabit and explore.
But this album is also one of healing, as Carol lost her husband in 2014, and she turned back to composing music after some years off from her Recording Career. After her “Christmas Mystique” production, she started on this work, tackling the personal issues she has faced – and this time, head on. Throughout the opus, we hear, quite beautifully, about Carol’s stages of recovery and healing. And by so doing, she has given us something for each one of us to hold onto.
The title track “Fly Away Butterfly” evokes an ambient groove enlivened by joyful, even mirthful flutes, the soundtrack to a butterfly flying away, from this place to that. Indeed, the track is symbolic, as Carol’s voice is intimate and distant, the delicate balance of love and loss that we all must face during life. “Awakening” flows and builds with an ostinato groove, lilting flutes, and well-placed piano touches. The song is wrought with anticipation and playful exchanges that resolve to the tonic chord, a brilliant display of compositional prowess and acumen. In fact, an encounter with a Blue Morph butterfly in Costa Rica prompted her to write the tune. Perhaps unwittingly, Carol’s has given us a track for our times, to be “awakened” to the tension-and-release, call-and-response of life. That after the very worst times comes recovery and healing. And Carol’s album, listened from start to finish, can be part of a veritable music healing, enriching your soul with creative and artistic ferment.
“On My Way” is even more explicit, an anthem for our times. It’s a song of new beginnings. Her lyrics “On My Way/To a better day/I’ll spread my wings and fly away…” connote not just escapism but realism. In truth, sometimes you need an army of one to get the job done. You have to take things into your own hands. At least with Carol’s horn-drenched tune, you’ll have a musical accompaniment as you face towards the future. “Across the Sky” begins with a Coltrane-like incandescent solo with dreamy, even distant vocals. With her vocal performance,Carol has her audience hanging on every note with anticipation. “One Way” is a song about love and combines some of her favorite elements such as acoustic piano, nylon string guitar, and a hint of Latin percussion. The original version of “One Way” appears on Al Jarreau’s 1988 hit album Heart’s Horizon. “I have always loved the song and thought creating and performing a new arrangement of it would be the perfect celebration of his artistry and life”.
In “Mas Que Nada,” the Latin rhythms pulse with fervor and give a stylistic panache to this track, as if you were listening at a dark-lit club with fire-red dancing. What’s more, Carol’s voice displays a richness and versatility of the highest order, with beautiful incantations and vocalizations. As an admirer of Latin music, Carol had me taken with this song. In a word, stunning.
“Waterfalls are all about that instant change in forward momentum, and can be powerful metaphors,” said Carol when describing the track “Chasing Waterfalls.” Her rolling piano propels the momentum of the song back-and-forth, ultimately advancing it without compunction so that we’re immersed, maybe even drenched in a sonic landscape of groove in the province of jam! “Never Thought It Would Be This Way” is a personal introspection into life when things turn out differently than expected. And ain’t that the truth. The lyrics however aren’t bitter but bittersweet, informed by a life of love and loss. “Transition” brings us back into the ambient world with watercolor harmonies and kaleidoscopic timbres cascading throughout the number. It’s about moving into new realms. And with the last track “Fly Away Reprise,” Carol sends the message that there must be a final letting go. In this album, we hear it all, and we are better for it. Carol Albert has given us a musical testimonial borne out of the crucible of loss. We hear both resilience and grace in her music. By giving so much of herself in this music, we not only hear her, but she creates a space for us to join her on the road ahead.
FROM THE ALBUM FLY AWAY BUTTERFLY (ALBUM RELEASE DATE: 7/1/2017)
One Way - (Song Download)
Download the hit single, "One Way". Note: Upon payment, you'll receive a link to download the song.
Carol Albert - vocals, piano
Chris Blackwell - guitar
Sam Skelton - saxophone
Trammell Starks - produced, programming, additional keys, bass
Alfreda Gerald - BGV
Written and arranged by Carol Albert
Engineered, Mixed and Mastered by Trammell Starks