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In Memory of ...
... Ralph Bravetail
Warren Kurts - City Magazine (Roanoke, VA) (Feb, 2006)
[Folk Singular (2006)] Greg Trafidlo, Kira Records - On the back of this latest release from Greg Trafidlo of Trifolkal (Pole, Trafidlo, and Phillips), there is a photograph of Greg as a smiling young boy in the ‘50s with a cowboy hat, vest, and small guitar. In his Chicago suburb he was having dreams of the west that he saw on black and white television after school and of the country & western music that could be heard long distance on the AM radio at night. The folk music era would soon follow. Greg stays true to those roots on this 14 song CD.
“Come to Bed” is one of two collaborations with Staunton, Virginia’s Barbara Martin included here. The uptempo mood brings hope to a couple fighting with everyday hassles and remembrance of their loving foundation. “Once There Was an‘Us’,” written with Paul Craft, is another gem on relationships.
The internal rhymes, imagery, and the Kandisky Trio’s Alan Weinstein’s cello all make “The Healing” the most soothing of the songs on the recording. Greg’s take on Mike Pearrell’s “Lost Daddy’s Lullaby” is gentle and sincere.
A Greg Trafidlo recording wouldn’t be complete without some humor, and that is certainly present in the Irish laden “The Starbucks of County Down,” which should be a crowd pleased like “The Tumbler” has been for Greg and Trifokal for years. His “Pops Panczko Polka” is a fun tribute to Chicago ethnic petty theft.
A conversational, Dan Hicks-like approach, helps kick off “Ain’t No Words.” Greg even does a bit of Spanish on the wonderfully melodic “Noche Buena En Tecate.” He balances the tender loss of a parent with a humorous tribute to a father and son relationship in “Chevy in Heaven.”
Finally, like Trifolkal’s “Oat Bran Muffins” Greg handles a quick recipe in “Christmas Pudding,” showing that he can set anything to melody.
Folk Singular is a fun variety, relaxing, entertaining, and worth having in our collections.