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Susan Cowsill: "Lighthouse" (2010) CD
by Michael Doherty
April 5, 2010
Suite 101

Susan Cowsill: "Lighthouse" (2010) CD
Second Solo Album Contains Personal Material About Hurricane Katrina
Share Article | Apr 5, 2010 Michael Doherty

This album contains the pain, the sorrow and ultimately the optimism of the folks who lost so much in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.

Susan Cowsill's second solo album tells personal stories from Hurricane Katrina. Her brother Barry drowned in the floodwaters after the hurricane. Susan also lost almost everything she owned. Often when people write about subjects that are very close to their hearts, the resulting songs are not their best. It's like they're so close to the material that they're unable to look at it critically. Susan Cowsill does not have this trouble. She's taken some of the most personal subjects possible and written an album of excellent songs.

One of the things that's wonderful about this album is that those listeners who didn't experience tragedies in New Orleans can still relate to these songs, still be moved by them. Though personal, these songs are universal in their appeal. The emotions, the feelings this album evokes are not completely particular to those folks in New Orleans. The sense of loss, the uncertainty, the optimism - these are things that everyone experiences.

Jackson Browne Sings On "Avenue Of The Indians"
"Avenue Of The Indians" is heartfelt, pretty and sad. It benefits from Jack Craft on mandolin and cello, and Sam Craft's nice violin part. These serve the song well without overpowering the material. And it's a treat to hear Jackson Browne ("Lawyers In Love," "Running On Empty") doing vocals on this song.

"Sweet Bitter End"
On "Sweet Bitter End," Susan's vocals really shine. The song contains a sort of optimism that everyone can relate to these days. It's not the mindless everything-is-great-don't-worry nonsense, but rather the sort of optimism that acknowledges all of the bad things but perseveres.

"You And Me Baby"
"You And Me Baby" is one of the best songs on this album. It is beautiful and sad, vocally perfect and lyrically wonderful. Here is a taste of the lyrics: "Well I had a dream/Wasn't so long ago/If you hadn't come true/Well I never would have known/That angels are real." Jack Craft on cello and Sam Craft on violin really add to the song.

Read more at Suite101: Susan Cowsill: "Lighthouse" (2010) CD: Second Solo Album Contains Personal Material About Hurricane Katrina

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