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The Sounding Board by R J Lannan
RJ Lannan is the reviewer for The Sounding Board.
Other reviews from The Sounding Board by R J Lannan:
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Starlight Starbright
By Candice Night
Label: Minstrel Hall Music
Starlight Starbright tracks
1. Rock A Bye Baby
2. Robin Redbreast
3. So This Is Love
4. Sleep Little Baby
5. In My Arms
6. Annie's Song
7. Down In The Meadow
8. Lullaby In The Night
9. Fireflies
10. Return To Pooh Corner
11. Once In A Garden
12. Baby Mine
13. Misty Blue
Sleep, baby, sleep.
There is nothing more inspirational than having children. They are a blessing no matter what. Candice Night, the golden voice behind the successful Renaissance band Blackmore's Night offers her experiences of parenthood translated into music on her second solo album, Starlight Starbright. Yes, she is counting her blessings.

As a songwriter, Night seems to possess a wonderful ability to infuse her delicate, but beautiful spirit into her compositions when she puts pen to paper. She has demonstrated this numerous times on the Blackmore's Night albums. She can adapt just about any song and make it endearing or exciting or both. The Starlight Starbright album features not only thirteen traditional and original engaging lullabies, but two bonus videos of the songstress singing to her children, so the album makes quite an impression. Let's listen.

A toddler's voice wishes us "Goodnight, sleep tight" as the album begins. The first track is Rock A Bye Baby. I never knew there were multiple verses to this timeless standard, but I now know them all. The rhyme has been around since the early seventeenth century, but the lullaby is still sung to modern day babies who need the benefit of a comforting voice to fall asleep.

So This is Love, one of the songs from Disney's animated classic Cinderella, is crooned softly by Night as a warm ballad. No, it is not the one that the mice sing, but it is slow and romantic with the kind of cadence that will comfort an anxious heart.

John Denver’s mid-seventies chart topper Annie's Song is slowed and warmly embellished by Night in her usual style. She takes a standard and covers it with her soothing, fairytale voice and turns it into something magical. If you're the parent, you cannot help but sing along. If you are the child maybe you will learn the story of how the musical frog wrote a song for his princess.

Lullaby in the Night was written by Candice's five year old daughter Autumn. It is a song of sweet innocence and all the things that fascinate the young mind. The moon and the stars and the promise of sleep are the stuff that dreams are made of and Candice, with a simple guitar and soft lyrics, breathes life into those dreams.

My favorite on the album is called Fireflies. Written by Lori McKenna the song was made popular by country artist Faith Hill. Having a little princess at one time, this is something I know about. It is the story of a little girl who was brave every day and went out on adventures. She captured fairies and lived in a castle and dreams the big dreams. Any child, no matter what age, would be captivated by the story.

"Before you met me I was a fairy princess
I caught frogs and called them prince and made myself a queen
And before you knew me I'd traveled 'round the world
I slept in castles and fell in love because I was taught to dream."

Candice adds her magical voice to the Kenny Loggins' classic Return to Pooh Corner. This is a song that stays in good stead in many a childhood memory. I can can remember singing to my own daughter in a whispery voice as she fought a high fever one night when she was three. I don't know if she heard me, but more than one heart was inflamed that night. Both Pooh and I end up with good results.

Misty Blue has a brilliant guitar intro by hubby, Richie Blackmore, but the tune is carried by Candice's dulcet lyrics. I have always believed that when a child cries, a heart is broken. Misty Blue, authored by the husband and wife duo, is a pleasing melody of promises made and kept.

There is no doubt that this music is a gift affecting the donor as much as the recipients. The album liner notes are chock full of colorful picture, several stories written by Autumn Blackmore and all the lyrics. Say goodnight Eeyore.
Rating: Very Good   Very Good
- reviewed by RJ Lannan on 2/26/2016
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