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Lacy J. Dalton - The Last Wild Place
album review by: Cheryl Harvey Hill

Lacy J. Dalton left Nashville for the peace and tranquility of the high desert area of Nevada and has clearly found inspiration in the serenity of her surroundings. Her press releases, and the main page of her website, proclaim Dalton to be "a little bit country and a little bit UFO." After listening to the twelve songs on The Last Wild Place, my guess is that UFO could stand for utterly fantastic orator since it isn't only her amazing voice that shines on this album; her songwriting is marvelous as well. I'd have to take issue with the "little bit country" part of that statement too. Dalton's voice fits country music like silk stockings fit the late, great Betty Grable; and her earthy baritone is just as unique and equally appealing to the ears and psyche as Grable's famous legs were to the eyes.

The simplicity of her current surroundings are reflected, not only in rhythm and verse of the album, but profoundly showcased by the musical accompaniment which is mostly acoustic. This fact radiates to the listener, an informal and comfortable ambiance reminiscent of an intimate club setting. To ante up the cozy value another notch, this album was created by a real family and a lot of love. Dalton's husband, Aaron Anderson, not only co-wrote with Dalton on two of the most beautiful songs on the album ("The Alaska Song" and "Boundless Skies"), provided musical support via acoustic guitar and a variety of strings, but he also co-produced. Her son, J. Adam Croston, contributed as well; he co-wrote on "Little Boy Blue."

Although she says she wrote "She Could Run," which tells the story of a magnificent race horse with the heart of a champion, about her cousinís beloved horses, it could well be a disguised autobiographical summation that symbolizes Dalton's own musical career. The liner notes state that this song "attests to the immortality of spirit." The spirit conveyed in the lyrics certainly are analogous to those of Dalton and regardless of whether you see her as "a little bit country or a little bit UFO," I think everyone agrees that she is a whole lot of excellence when it comes to singing and songwriting; this album is absolute proof of that fact.

Several of the songs struck a chord with me and "Boundless Skies" was one of them. It is also the superlative ending for this CD since it is the ideal showcase for Dalton's wonderfully unique voice. As a bonus, the instrumentals on this cut are like a most delicious icing on an already perfect cake. The laughter from Dalton at the end of the title cut is appropriate for this entire project since Dalton has every right to be in good spirits. Chalk up another success for an indie artist and label. It is gratifying to know that it isn't only a major hamburger chain that can "have it [their] way."

Let's hope The Last Wild Place is just the first stop on a new string of hits for the multi-talented Dalton.

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Lacy J. Dalton - The Last Wild Place track listing.

1. Listen to the Wind 
2. Heart of Hearts (Stay Open) 
3. The Wanderers 
4. Old Dog Blue 
5. The Alaska Song (Under the Midnight Sun)
6. Standin' Knee Deep
7. Slip Away
8. Little Boy Blue 
9. The Last Wild Place 
10. Sanctuary
11. She Could Run
12. Boundless Skies 

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Lacy J. Dalton still has the magic. She could sing her name and have her public enthralled. She is one of the greatest and thereís not another like her. The Last Wild Place can be added to the growing list of her successes.
~ Peggy - Broken Arrow, OK

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