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CD REVIEW: Joe West

If The World Was Upside Down

December 2, 2008, 12:00 am

It’s a game we’ve all played: “What was your first album?”

For most of us, the answer isn’t the coolest thing out there. (Mine was the soundtrack to Stand By Me; it could have been a lot worse!) Santa Fe kids are lucky though. Instead of being embarrassed about that Miley Cyrus CD, they can get a little taste of Joe West.

Big kids in town already know about the country songwriter’s talent and sense of humor, but If The World Was Upside Down is a little different. Musically, of course, it’s top notch with Josh Martin, Ben Wright, Sharon Gilchrist and other great local musicians joining West on the 11-track album. In fact, the only thing that really makes Upside Down any different from West’s other work is the lyrics and the vocal accompaniment of some Santa Fe kids (Bella and Quanah Palmer, Cree and Cypress Hayunga and Robin West). The lyrics are totally adult friendly, won’t make mom want to drive the minivan into an arroyo, and tell little stories that kids will love.

“Veronica Rose The Flying Unicorn,” for example, doesn’t doubt the existence of a unicorn, simply whether she can fly or not. She can. That she does so backed by soft finger-picked guitar and a harmonized chorus makes the whimsy of her world melt into ours.

From robots to toothbrushing, West has put together an album for kids that is so much fun it’ll make adults want to dance and maybe throw a paper airplane or two.

CD Release Party Saturday, Dec. 6

 

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