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Wanda Fairman - Path of Love

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Wanda Fairman
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CD REVIEW: 'PATH OF LOVE' ...Spiritual reflections in song... -Patrick Downes, Editor, Hawaii Catholic Herald-March 23, 2006 "Path of Love," the debut compact disk of Big Island musician, singer and songwriter Wanda Fairman, is a collection of spiritual reflections expressed as meticulously crafted songs. It's a humble work, rich in it's deceptive spareness. It's 15 songs, all written by Fairman, are deeply personal creations. Some were inspired by the lives of people she has known, others by lines of Scripture and others by private contemplation. Some are prayers; some are explorations of her relationship with the Lord. The songs praise God and his goodness, but they don't shout it from the mountaintop. They are more intimate affirmations, more harp than cymbal, more lyre than trumpet. All are sung in a single voice or in a voice in harmony with itself. Fairman's voice is beautiful and clear as a bell. Her phrasing is unpretentious and from the heart. The accompaniment is mostly piano played by the singer herself. Some songs also include guitar and synthesizer played by family members. The musicianship is clean and precise, never overbearing. On some of the songs, the instruments offer more counterpoint than accompaniment, providing additional grace to a song's melody, lyric and delivery. The title song, "Path of Love," could also be the album's theme song. "There is a path, a path of love, always leading home," Fairman sings in the opening line. The path is God's will; home is the Promised Land. Other songs explore further the same journey through life and it's final destination. In Fairman's songs, the "journey" is always in the company of a merciful and sustaining Lord who holds her hand, calls her name, guides her step, carries her burden. "Speak to me of Heaven," a hymn that sounds like it was written a couple of centuries ago, happily yearns for that "place of joy untold." "We Shall Be One" explores the same heavenly theme more philosophically, with a melody more melancholy and chant-like. Sweet Appalachian harmonies mollify the pleading of "Who Could Endure It," Fairman's version of Psalm 130. Fairman's melodies and chord changes are delicately and thoughtfully constructed, never clichéd. "I Am Walking," a song that dwells upon a moonlight stroll, is melodically and lyrically explorative, reminiscent of early Joni Mitchell. "Child of Love" is in the same vein. "Enchanted," the album's one instrumental, examines the facets of a simple melodic phrase. It is the musical equivalent of a jewel revolving in the sunshine. "Real True Love" is a litany-like love song to Jesus as straightforward as it's title. It also shows off the clean electric guitar work of her husband Paul. "Path of Love" is an album for quiet moments, for long walks, for contemplation. This is not background music, but songs that require a calm and attentive ear. The more one listens, the more one will hear a rich source of inspiration for one's own soul's journey.

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1) Path of Love
2) If You But Walk with Me
3) Who Could Endure It?
4) Bless the Lord
5) Speak to Me of Heaven
6) The Other Side
7) We Shall Be One
8) I Praise You Lord
9) I Am Walking
10) You Bring Me Back
11) Enchanted
12) Child of God
13) Bless Us
14) Song for Elena
15) Real True Love
16) Path of Love Reprise

Path of Love
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Path of Love | Wanda Fairman