- All That I Am
Album Review by: Cheryl Harvey Hill
of my friends, who works within the music industry, has been singing the
praises of Daniel Lee Martin for almost as long as I've known her. At
the 1998 Fan Fair, in Nashville, she dragged me to his booth and
insisted that I meet the person that she predicted was going to be
"a country music superstar some day."
He was most assuredly a long, tall, albeit extremely refreshing, drink
of water. Charming, handsome and diligent in his efforts to make it in
the industry. As I recall, besides being a great singer, he was his own
manager/publicist, songwriter and photographer/producer. Unfortunately,
the industry has always been reluctant to embrace self-produced talent
-- no matter how good they might be. But it appears that others have now
discovered what my friend saw in Martin years ago. The first song to be
released from his new album, "Homespun Love," hit the airwaves
at the end of September and the album will be released at the end of
October on the new label, ChinMusic Records.
The first two songs on the album are up-tempo. "Come Back To The
Way It Was" sounds like a Montgomery Gentry tune and the second
song, "Homespun Love," written by Keith Urban and Vernon Rust,
clearly reflects the Urban sound ... this isn't to say they aren't good.
They definitely are good, just not unique.
But just when I started to think that this album wasn't going to be all
that special, the third song began to play -- "I Can't Let
Go;" written by Martin. He refers to this beautiful ballad as a
"soul write" and you will clearly understand what he means
once you have listened to the song in its entirety. His bio states that
the song was originally written to purge the pain he was feeling when he
lost his father, but as his spirit healed the song came to have greater
meaning for him. I'm certain it will have "greater meaning"
for everyone who hears it.
I think there is something for everybody on this album. All of the songs
are lyrically and musically strong. Four of the songs were written by
Keith Urban so their quality came as no surprise, but after reading over
the liner notes I was surprised to find that all of my favorites songs
on this album were written by Martin. It was his voice that got my
attention on "Until You," a simple love song that is clearly
sung from the heart. And despite the wonderful instrumentals on the toe-tappin',
"Purely Speculation," it was the cadence of his voice, once
again, that effortlessly conveyed the lyrics and enhanced the music.
The final song on the album, "A Guitar With No Strings," is a
superbly written ballad by Martin and, in my opinion, one of the most
beautiful songs I have ever heard. A poignant tribute to his late
father, this is a song that will manage to touch everyone who hears it.
Daniel Lee Martin says, "I want this album to touch listeners
spiritually. I want them to walk away feeling as if they know me. Come
to think of it, I don't want them to walk away from the album at all, I
hope they take it with them wherever they go." Well, Mr. Martin, I
haven't been able to quit replaying "A Guitar With No Strings"
over and over in my mind despite the fact that the CD player has been
off for more than an hour now and you sure managed to touch my friend
Helen P. all those years ago. Perhaps she was right when she predicted
that you just might be "a country music superstar some day."
After listening to the thirteen songs on your new album, I'm certainly
inclined to agree with her and I think "some day" might be at
Daniel Lee Martin
- All That I Am track list: Buy
Come Back To The Way It Was
2. Homespun Love
3. I Can't Let Go
4. All That I Am
5. Freedom's Finally Mine
6. Tangled up In Love
7. If I Was An Angel
The Closest Thing
9. Lucy Kept Hangin' On
10. Until You
11 Sometimes Angels Can't Fly
12. Purely Speculation
13. A Guitar With No Strings
Review by Jim Weaver:
While Daniels site is a good looking one, it is a total
"FLASH" site which means slow download time for dial-up
connections, plus it's a "Singing Site" which means the music
is going to play whether you want it to or not, (you can turn it off).
The total download time for the main page to finish loading was 4.5
minutes on a 56K modem connected at 50K. Now to be fair the site was
completely visible in just over a minute, my guess is it was 2 large
music files that slowed everything down. If you've been visiting this
site for any amount of time you know my feelings on total FLASH sites
and Singing Sites.
Could Be Better
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