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November 14, 2021

November 14, 2021 (317 words)

The young balladeer Adele has done it again. Her latest hit, Go Easy on Me, is currently playing up and down the radio dial at all hours of the day and night. It’s yet another lament of anguished heartbreak. Being unlucky in love has provided her with a wealth of song-writing material. As affecting and enjoyable as her output has been since her 2008 debut at the tender age of eighteen, some of us are hoping she will eventually turn an emotional corner and find something else to write about.

I like all her stuff, but this latest song could be her best work yet. It just sounds so natural, so organic. There are only one or two of her occasionally odd-ball vocal inflections you can tell she is especially enamored of, but tend to distract my attention and detract from the song’s overall impact. A minor quibble, all things considered.

And what would an Adele song be without a particular lyric that doesn’t quite jive with the rest of the story being told. In this case, the singer claims there is no chance to stay together, because she and her partner are both set in their respective ways. Then, in the very next line, we’re told no one can deny she remade herself in every way possible to please her mate and make the relationship work.

My theory is we are so taken with the melodic tunes, and with such a lovely voice, that we don’t begrudge this talented artist an occasionally incongruent lyric.

The low-key production values here are just right – the solo piano, the little bit of bass. And her voice seems to have matured, has lost the kitschy-ness of earlier cuts. Much the way Bonnie Raitt’s voice did as her recording career progressed.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to humming the refrain of Go Easy on Me.

Robert J. Cavanaugh, Jr
November 14, 2021

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