Barry Walsh

of discs
Stock Status (?)
In Stock
Delivery Estimate
2-5 days
Country, Americana
Gretchen Peters
October 22, 2012

Format: Compact Disc



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Most musicians would be ready to call it a full career after decades backing such country, folk and pop luminaries as Waylon Jennings, Roy Orbison, Dottie West, Johnny Paycheck, Jimmy Webb and Nanci Griffith on the stage and in the studio. But virtuosic Nashville-based pianist Barry Walsh isn't like most musicians. Sure, he's done all that and more, but he's also fashioned a new career for himself as musical partner to revered singer-songwriter Gretchen Peters and an artist in his own right.

"Paradiso" - his second solo album - is the sound of a player who spent years shaping his keyboard contributions to the contours of other people's music finally staking his courageous claim to creative freedom.

Some of Walsh's new compositions have very personal origins, like the beautifully brooding "Gretchen's Theme" or "Youth and Age", with its eloquent call-and-response passages between piano and guitar. The latter marks his first collaboration with his guitarist son Brennan Walsh.

Says the proud father, "We met as equals on the same stage, so to speak, for the first time." And the Brian Eno-esque "Seven Weeks" came of an instrumental role reversal with Peters: "I thought it would be a great idea if we turned things on their head and let her play the piano part and I would find a guitar part to play."

In tracks like "Marathon Motor Works" - named for an old car factory in Nashville - you can hear Walsh exploring cinematic ideas in the vein of one of his more contemporary influences, Philip Glass. Rob Ickes and David Henry provide fetchingly fluid accompaniment on dobro and cello. (Henry also mixed the album.) "With the constant motion going on on the piano," Walsh explains, "I felt like it needed something smooth and legato riding over the top of that."

Two compositions take their names from the places where he first premiered them: "Koblenz", the German city, and "Paradiso", the storied Amsterdam venue. Pondering the latter led him to Dante's Divine Comedy (Paradiso is the third part of the poem, following Inferno and Purgatorio), and eventually to the album title and the vivid medieval print that adorns the album's cover. Walsh describes the memorable, century's-old scene this way: "The thing that's subversive about it is here's Dante and his amore Beatrice ascending up to paradise, meanwhile Satan is corrupting the clergy in Florence by dropping gold coins into their hands. I like the yin and yang of it".

More Info

Key Value
Catalogue number SCARLCD8
Barcode 0626570617686
Number of items 1
Packaging type Digipak
Imported No
Weight 64g
Dimensions (LxWxH) 140mm x 8mm x 125mm

Disc 1

Track Listing — Disc 1

Song Title Time
1. Gretchen's Theme -
2. North Platte -
3. Koblenz -
4. Youth And Age -
5. Paradiso -
6. Seven Weeks -
7. Son Binocle -
8. July 20 -
9. Marathon Motor Works -
10. Maverick Radar -
11. There's Been An Incident -
12. Son Binocle (Reprise) -