From the Best New Age Artists

Pam Asberry Thankful Heart, Joyful Mind Album Review

Thankful Heart cover full resolution

Thankful Heart cover full resolutionReview of “Thankful Heart, Joyful Mind”By Pam Asberry

Album review by Dyan Garris

This is the second album from Pam Asberry, solo pianist, and winner of “Best New Artist 2018” award from Enlightened Piano Radio.  “Thankful Heart, Joyful Mind” is a soul-soothing twelve track “musical journey through the holiday season.”

This is a relaxing album, but also at the same time, it’s joyful, exuberant, and passionately played through and through. With her distinctive arrangements and sensitive, graceful piano playing, Pam perfectly captures the celebratory essence and true nature of the holiday season in this collection of “sacred and secular melodies,” spanning several centuries and originating from several different countries.

The album opens with “Gesù Bambino,” an Italian Christmas carol, whose original melody and lyrics of the chorus are derived from “O Come All Ye Faithful.” This is beautifully played, with a wonderful arrangement. It’s a perfect opening to the album.

Following is “Sing We Now of Christmas,” a traditional French carol. Equally well played with panache and excellently arranged, it’s got a dreamy, mesmerizing quality.  Quite enjoyable.

In the holiday favorite, “White Christmas,” by Irving Berlin, Pam has once again —as she did so impressively on her debut album, “Seashells In My Pocket” brought forth the emotion to us through the music.  Here we can literally feel and see the snowflakes falling softly around us. She has a real gift for painting a lush landscape with a fine sable brush of sonic soundscape.  It’s a superb arrangement as well.

The album includes some other well recognized hymns and carols, such as “Away in a Manger,” “Bell Carol Medley” (Carol of the Bells), where Pam makes superb use of the ostinato, and my personal favorite, “Over the River and Through the Wood.” This is so upbeat and playful, I truly believed I was on my own way to grandfather’s (or grandmother’s) house for holiday dinner.

One piece where we can really feel the love shine through is “In the Bleak Midwinter,“ track 8.   I really like the way she’s arranged and played this.  It’s very gentle, uplifting to the soul on many levels, and not bleak at all. Very pretty, filled with love, and deeply moving.

There are so many other things to love here in “Thankful Heart, Joyful Mind,” such as the peaceful, lullaby quality of “Still, Still, Still,” and the celebratory and innocent feel of “He is Born.”  And there is a perfect ending to this album with “Come Let Us Anew,” reminding us that life is an eternal circle and hope is always present, not just at Christmas or holiday time.

But what really stands out in this album are two things: Pam’s skillful arrangements and the stirring emotions evoked by the way she plays her instrument.  If you’re one who dreads the holidays, or find yourself immersed in inexplicable melancholy, give this uplifting album a try. It’s sure to elevate anyone’s spirits, hearts, and minds, any time of the year.

Get Thankful Heart, Joyful Mind here.

Similar posts
  • Jeff Oster Reach Album Review“Reach” by Jeff Oster Album review by Dyan Garris for New Age CD and Zone Music Reporter (ZMR) I remember quite clearly when Jeff Oster burst onto the New Age music scene in 2005, with his blazing trumpet and mellow flugelhorn. I remember well, because the incredibly dynamic, vibrant music on his award-winning debut album, [...]
  • 2002 A World Away Album Review“A World Away” by 2002 Album review by Dyan Garris for New Age CD and Zone Music Reporter (ZMR) “A World Away” is the 18th album from the award winning family band, 2002, consisting of the trio, Randy Copus, Pamela Copus, and their young daughter, Sarah Copus.  “A World Away” is 10 tracks and 46 [...]
  • Journey of Tears by Monica Williams &...Journey of Tears by Monica Williams Album Review by Dyan Garris for New Age CD “Journey of Tears“ is the first solo album by San Francisco based flutist, composer, performer, and music teacher, Monica Williams, but not her first album. And it’s not her first foray into New Age music. With Wendy Loomis, she co-founded [...]
  • Gary Schmidt Even For A Moment Album ...“Even For A Moment” by Gary Schmidt Album Review by Dyan Garris for New Age CD.com “Even For A Moment” is the second professional album release for solo pianist, Gary Schmidt.  Hailing originally from Canada, and now living in Colorado, Gary teaches piano to children and adults. He studied piano at Tyndale College and the [...]
  • Matias Bacoñsky – When The Worl...When The World Ends by Matias Bacoñsky Album review by Dyan Garris for New Age CD.com “When The World Ends” is the third official album release from, Matias Bacoñsky, a pianist and composer from Argentina. His first official album was “Life And Death,” released in 2016. His second official album, “Straight From The Heart,” was [...]

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Samples from Jeff Oster’s new album, REACH

SEE OUR REVIEW OF REACH HERE
GET REACH HERE

Featured Erik Scott Video – Solooka

1 Hour Relaxation Playlist

Music Video – IMA Award POP VOX Winner – New Age Song Category – “Mystic Sea”

Buying links below: Mystic's Nine album (and for the song Mystic Sea) available here:
  • Amazon
  • iTunes
  • Spotify
  • CDBaby
  • Bandcamp

  • Follow Dyan Garris here:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • Official Artist Site