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David Wilcox - Airstream

Airstream

David Wilcox

What Are Records

Available from What Are Records.

A review for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange written
by Roberta B. Schwartz
(rschwart@bowdoin.edu)

David Wilcox is simply one of the best artists to pick up a guitar and write songs. His ability to write beautifully nuanced, personal music from the heart has connected him to audiences like no other contemporary singer/songwriter.

For two years Wilcox traveled the back roads and highways of America with his wife and son in an Airstream trailer. The songs recorded on his new CD, Airstream, capture that experience. Not only were the tunes written during his travels, but recorded inside the Airstream itself—all of the studio gear was brought inside. What you get is David Wilcox, his inimitable melt like butter baritone, and his superlative work on acoustic guitar.

The recording opens with the wonderful Right on Time, a song about losing love, being alone, and then finding love just at the moment when you needed it most. It is vintage David Wilcox—the warm, soft baritone that feels like home and the open guitar playing.

No one writes love songs like Wilcox, and Forever Now is one of his best. It is one thing to revel in new love—turn on top forty radio and take your pick. But here we have in eloquent lyric and melody, a deeply felt celebration of a love that endures:
Love made a picture right here in my heart I can
See all those years shining through somehow
I see forever now

Wilcox delves into the complexities of the Middle East conflict in "Three Brothers" with an allegory about siblings divided over the family estate. On The Reason, a haunting tune co-written with Nashville great Beth Nielsen Chapman, Wilcox sings about a love that has seen trouble and storms, but still survives. And lest you think that Wilcox does not have a well-developed sense of humor, take a listen to Reaper Sweepstakes, all about how the media packages and sells fear to the American public.

Songs like This Old Car, describing a parent's fear of a child's newfound independence in his first car and driver's license, is what endears Wilcox to old fans and new alike. He makes us feel like a family of friends in the experiences we share, and in the music we become a part of.

Airstream is a welcome addition to Wilcox's body of work. It has all of the things we have come to expect from him: the warmth and open quality of his music, the familiar experiences we knowingly share, the superlative guitar work, but mostly the love, honesty and humanity that always shine through. I don't know why the powers that be in America have not yet made him an official national treasure. But among the audiences he has played to and for over the past three decades, he is a musician without peer. He touches us in the places we live every day with the artistry of his music. Airstream is a treasure and a gift, simply and beautifully recorded and produced—just David Wilcox and his guitar, as it should be.

Track List:

  • Right on Time
  • Forever Now (D. Wilcox and Nichole Nordeman)
  • Perfect Storm
  • Three Brothers
  • Plain View (D. Wilcox/J.D. Martin/Jan Garrett/Nance Pettit)
  • The Reason (D. Wilcox/Beth Nielsen Chapman)
  • Reaper Sweepstakes
  • Falling for It
  • To Love
  • Little White Lie
  • This Old Car
  • Never Change (D. Wilcox/Beth Nielsen Chapman)
  • No Telling Where
  • The Crossings (D. Wilcox/J.D. Martin/Jan Garrett/Nance Pettit)
All songs written by David Wilcox except where noted.

Edited by: David N. Pyles
(dnpyles@acousticmusic.com)

Copyright 2008, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.

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