Jeff Talmadge - The Spinning of the World

The Spinning of the World

Jeff Talmadge

Bozart Records
812 San Antonio St., Suite 505
Austin, TX 78701

A review written for the Folk & Alliance Music Exchange
by Moshe Benarroch

The Spinning of the World, is Jeff Talmadge' sequel to his well received Secret Anniversaries. That title became one of the most played in my system over the last few months. Attorney Talmadge may still be a secret, but he won't be staying that way for too long! I predict he'll get a good deal from one of the majors and make it big!

The honesty, the deceptive simplicity with which Talmadge approaches his music, reminds me of the work of some of the great poets. It's no surprise he won a poetry prize; his well-crafted lyrics demonstrate that he's read the best, a sport many singer-songwriters should adopt. I was reminded of the directness of poet David Ignatow, one of the most touching figures in modern American literature and of Texas cult figure, Eric Taylor, himself an engaging singer-songwriter.

The opener, Message In A Bottle, starts with the striking words:

'You're the man who missed the flight
Of the plane that later crashed
You're the one guy left in the trailer park
When the hurricane blew past'

The arrangements are acoustic, with 4-5 musicians playing on each song; great cello and acoustic guitar; some with violin, featuring greats like Stephen Bruton, Mark Hallman, Eliza Gylkinson, and Ian Matthews.

I really liked this CD, but I found much more magic in Anniversaries, than in The Spinning Of The World. Maybe it's the Second-CD-Syndrome... like Elvis Costello put it, "You have ten years to make the first record, and one to make the second." What bothered me most was the production; the voice was less up front in this release. Minor quibble, of course. If you hear even one of Talmadge' CDs, you'll want both, and will likely be the first to buy his third! Congratulations, Jeff Talmadge!

Song List:

  • Message In A Bottle
  • The Spinning of the World
  • Advice To A Friend
  • I Wasn't Thinking Of You
  • The Man Behind Her Shoulder
  • The Hard Part's Letting Go
  • Jessie's Blues
  • You'd Think I was The Sun
  • That Doesn't Mean I Don't Love You
  • First Day Of Winter
  • Icing On The Cake

Edited by: Tammy D. Moon

Copyright 2001, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.

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