Rollicking through our stereo like a gentle breeze that blows through the plains on a warm summer day, Sarah Patrick affirms to us that we shouldn’t ask for her opinion if we don’t want to know what’s on her mind, because she’s going to stand tall in her own shoes for the woman that she is. This is how her first album, The Woman I Am (out this June courtesy of the geniuses at Nashville America Records) starts us off in its title track, setting a solid tone of strength and self-determination that will act as a recurring theme throughout all 12 of the diverse songs on this album.
Like a thoughtfully sewn quilt featuring the colorful patchwork of a lifetime’s worth of influences and accents, The Woman I Am attempts to encompass all of Sarah Patrick’s collection of quirks and artistic capabilities, and although it falls short of giving her the full-screen, high definition stage that someone with her skill deserves, it gives us a great idea of just what we can come to expect from this young lady just starting off in the entertainment business.
It was none other than David Frizzell, who in country music circles goes without ever needing an introduction, that found the treasure that is Sarah Patrick and has pushed her to develop this new album, and we all have him to acknowledge for doing so. Anyone who needs convincing would be wise to give the song “I Ain’t No Angel,” one of the many highlights from The Woman I Am, a listen. One doesn’t need to examine the track very closely to hear how much command Patrick has over everyone in the studio, from the guitarist to the people behind the soundboard.
There’s a draw, a hypnotic allure in her voice that is largely showcased in the second half of the album, and it’s no doubt thanks to the earthy production quality of the LP as a whole. That’s actually the predominant way that Patrick’s work can be set aside from anyone else making similar music in the scene at the moment; I can actually hear different instruments playing their parts on this album, which is something I definitely couldn’t say about the last Florida Georgia Line full-length.
The problem with a lot of emerging singer/songwriters today, both in the country music spectrum and in pop music as whole, is that the once irreverent self-consciousness and nasty bite that made artists like Bob Dylan or Johnny Cash so successful has taken on a bloated, hateful tone that ends up coming off more pretentious than it does intellectual or articulate. I can give my stamp of approval, however, on Sarah Patrick’s new record, both in terms of its authenticity and its complete lack of pomp or self-righteousness.
Not only is her contribution a good thing for country, but it’s a refreshing sound to hear after all of the trashy singles and filler-laden attempts at country pop that have surfaced from the Nashville-Atlanta circuit in the last couple of years.
Find more music by Sarah Patrick on I-TUNES
-review by Thomas Patton, III