ALBUM REVIEW: Keeper of the flame from a bygone age is making mark
May Your Kindness Remain, Courtney Marie Andrews, Loose Music, Out Now
There is a very good reason why Arizona singing starlet Courtney Marie Andrews has earned flattering comparisons with Emmylou Harris, Carole King and Joni Mitchell.
After sending shockwaves through the indie, folk, country and bluegrass scene with her genre-shaping albun “Honest Life” last year, Courtney is intent on an even more earth-shattering revolution with “May Your Kindness Remain”.
Everyone of the ten tracks on it, a blend of putting the world to rights with a clenched fist mixed with the last two lines from William Ernest Henley’s poem “Invictus”, namely “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul”, make Courtney a formidable artist to produce for.
How a 27-year-old American from the West Coast has managed to cram the perceptions of a career that started with her leaving home at 16, most richly painted in “Lift the Lonely From My Heart, Rough Around the Edges” and “This House” is a daunting question to answer.
Yet Courtney manages it with a voice, the likes of which this reviewer has only heard once before in nearly six years of experiencing live music in Spalding.
Andrews captures vulnerability with unpretentiousness and charm - that is more than enough on which to build a career in country music
That particular voice belonged to Lindsay Lou Rilko, of Lindsay Lou and the Flatbellies, who cast a bluegrass spell on Spalding in January 2017.
A strong, spiritual thread runs throughout Courtney’s album, most notably on the title track, “Kindness of Strangers” and
“Long Road Back to You”.
Finally, after ten years of trying to make her mark, Courtney earned her stars when she was named International Artist Of The Year at the UK Americana Music Association Awards in February.
With a combination of this award, “May Your Kindness Remain”, and a personality described as both “amiable and evocative” Courtney Marie Andrews is set to fulfil the prophecy of music reviewer for The Times, Will Hodgkinson, who described as her as being “too good to remain a niche interest for much longer”.
Review by Winston Brown