Wednesday, November 19, 2008

'Fields of Gold'

It's happened four times.

The voice hits you like a tidal wave, drowning you in the undertow, clutching you in its magnetic pull.

Four times I've heard it: Karen Carpenter, "Close to You," middle school. Alison Krauss, "Ghost in this House," Tennessee Theater, 2001. Robinella, "Teardrops," Barley's, 2006.

And, last night, Eva Cassidy, "Fields of Gold," YouTube.

I first heard Eva on Jonathan Schwartz's "Sunday Show." I've forgotten the song, but it made me stop in my tracks. I wrote down her name and the album title, but never got around to buying it. You know how you do.

My friend and Fountain City historian Dr. Jim Tumblin, a fellow audiophile, sent me a YouTube clip of Cassidy singing "Bridge Over Troubled Water" from YouTube. That got me exploring and I came across her live cover of "Fields of Gold."

And, my god, it happened again.

Eva's life is a tragic tale. Like Karen Carpenter and Nancy LaMott, Eva's voice was taken from us too soon. She was virtually unknown outside of the Washington D.C. area when she died of melanoma in 1996. But, word spread, and she's become a favorite among fans and critics of a certain musical bent.

Her voice is haunting, full of emotion and depth, capable of soaring higher and higher, giving the listener the "wow" factor that sends chills up the spine. Hers is the kind of performance that gives the illusion of intimacy. This moment is just for you.

Go to You Tube and search for her and the song "Fields of Gold" if you like this kind of music.

I just hate she's no longer here to brighten our lives with her talent.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nancy LaMott did not die of melanoma. She died of uterine cancer in December of 1995. Ron

8:51 PM  
Blogger Jake Mabe said...

Yes, Ron, you're right. I was talking about Eva Cassidy, who died of melanoma. The reference to Nancy LaMott (whose music I also love) referred to the fact that she and Karen Carpenter, like Eva Cassidy, were taken from us too soon. Thanks for the note.

9:00 PM  

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