Ticklish Ears

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Two Albums

Sorry for the light posting. As my mom has said in the past, my “get up and go” has “got up and went.” Since I’m not feeling particularly deep, I thought I’d post on something I don’t think I’ve written on before: music. Not that you can’t write deep stuff on music. It’s just that this ain’t it.

In the past month, I’ve purchased two new albums, both by relatively new female singers with the initials M.S. The circumstances tying these albums together are different but connected (in a way).

When we were visiting Nashville (TN) last month, we stopped in Tower Records in Opry Mills. My better half was looking for a specific video, and the rest of us (including my mom and dad) were wandering through the CD aisles. The daughter’s favorite thing to do in a store like this is pick up the earphones that you find in the stacks and listen to the selected albums. On this trip, she found an album that she thought I should listen to: “Fine Upstanding Citizen” by Maia Sharp.

I took the earphones, and I actually liked what I heard. I don’t know whether to call it folk or new country or just acoustic (whatever that means). But she has a nice alto voice, the tunes are inviting, and the lyrics are clever.

OK, so I decided to buy the album, but as I looked for it (in the S’s or course), I stumbled upon Mindy Smith. I had heard Mindy sometime back in 2004 on NPR. Her music was very intriguing, and I was tempted to purchase her album, “One Moment More,” instead of Maia’s. But, to satisfy the daughter, I went with Maia. And I wasn’t disappointed.

Side note: Tower gives a discount (around 20%, I think) to Active Duty and Retired Military. Cool!

But I couldn’t get the Mindy Smith album out of my mind, so while we wee at Best Buy last week (a treat for us, since it’s an hour away), I bought “One Moment More.” It was money well spent.

Mindy is more like “New Country,” I guess, although the styling isn’t radically different from Maia. Mindy has a sweeter voice, and her songs are quite melodic. The first song on the album, “Come to Jesus,” has a driving sort of country rock feel (and you can’t beat the message, even if it’s light on theology). The title song is a very tender and mournful ballad that almost makes you cry. And, there’s a “hidden track”: a cover of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene,” with Dolly handling some of the background vocals. Powerful stuff. The enhanced CD has the “Jolene” video on it.

Anyway, if you’re into this sort of music (whatever the heck it is), I recommend both of these singers, but especially Mindy Smith.

One Response to “Two Albums”

  1. Robert Says:

    I remember when the Tower Records in Nashville was located on West End Ave., right across the street from the high-rise dorms at Vanderbilt. I spent a good portion of my high school days circling the TINY parking lot (about a dozen parking spaces total) waiting to park so I could get in to buy CD’s — back when they still came in the long rectangular boxes! (And we had to walk uphill in the snow both ways to get there…)

    I’ve visited Opry Mills once, and as a guy who grew up in the Nashville area, all I can say is I miss Opryland. The Wabash Cannonball, the Flume Zoome, the little cable cars that would take you way up over the park… good memories from being a kid.

    Glad you like the music, though. Mindy Smith is very good. (

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