If you want to cry:
Unbroken Angels – Hannah McNeil
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and this video being used to help raise awareness and put a stop to the ongoing cycle of child abuse. McNeil paints a heartbreaking picture of abuse and the loss of innocence. It reminds me of one of my favorite Deana Carter songs, Everything’s Gonna Be Alright, even featuring the sweet voices of a children’s choir. She has recently used her gifts to make a positive impact on the world by partnering with YesICAN, the International Child Advocacy Network. YesICAN is a worldwide organization dedicated to breaking the cycle of child abuse, a vast issue that costs the lives of 1,640 children every year, and it is the hope of YesICAN that this music video/PSA will help raise awareness about child abuse and more importantly provide a solution. For more information or to help those in need, please visit yesican.org. Hannah McNeil will also be available for interview opportunities to speak more about her role in ending this cycle of violence. This will most certainly bring tears to your eyes while also instilling a sense of hope along the way.
If you’re reminiscent:
Mary Chapin Carpenter – The Blue Distance
The whispering, subtle intonations of The Blue Distance pull you in within the first 10 seconds. It’s a searching melody that returns to the center of everything that the track is about – hope. There’s hope in knowing and believing, and Carpenter, with her innate ability to tell stories and capture emotions, has a strong command on infusing every moment of her music with authentic experience and emotion. If you need to be reminded to see the beauty in everything, take one listen to this song, it will bring you to that place. In a press release, Carpenter said:
“The Icelandic writer Roni Horn spoke of the world as being ‘blue at it’s edges and it’s depths…the color of that distance is the color of emotion, the color of solitude and desire…the color of where you are not. And the color of where you can never go…’ This song attempts to speak to these things – how they make us who we are and how deeply we need people in our lives to understand these things in us.”
Her new album, The Things That We Are Made Of, is out on May 6th.
If someone just broke your heart:
Hayes Carll – The Love That We Need
In those moments that you can see the demise of one of your relationships, but are hanging on so dearly for what you once had, time can often play out like a movie. This is the soundtrack to that moment in all of our lives. Carll captures the emptiness and vulnerability in all of us, those stinging seconds of frustration, and the quiet that settles around the end. It’s beautiful and heartbreaking all at once. But it’s one of those songs you have to listen to over and over again to catch every subtle break. His new album, Lovers and Leavers, is out now and he’ll be in Nashville at The Basement East on May 11th.
If you’re feeling happy:
Fairground Saints – Turn This Car Around
It would be a featured post without a group. But Fairground Saints are a newer band that act as if they’ve been together for years. Their warm harmonies and intricate melodies weave their way around your heart and ensnare every sense. They bring bits of folk and bluegrass together with a modern storytelling twist, and it’s undeniably catchy, which is probably how they landed on a massive pop tour with Carly Rae Jepsen. In a word, they are magical, and I haven’t been able to get enough of them from the very first listen. Their self-titled debut is out now.