Mary Gauthier - The Foundling
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The Foundling (Razor & Tie, 2010)

Mary Gauthier

Reviewed by John Walker

Mary Gauthier is best known as an introspective songwriter. Her intellectual songs can strike a chord deep within even the most apathetic listeners. This is certainly true with her latest, produced by Michael Timmons from The Cowboy Junkies.

"The Foundling" takes a deeply personal look into the life of Gauthier. Born from a mother she never knew or even met, Gauthier bounced around adoptive parents until she was 15 when she hit the road on her own in hopes of finding herself. This record leads us through her struggles, thoughts and personal demons.

The culmination of the record can be found in the powerfully poignant song March 11, 1962. This predominately spoken word song hinges on her first conversation with her birth mother over the phone, after many internal struggles to make the call. The instrumental accompaniment builds to a perfect touching moment when she finally realizes what to say at the end of the song. Even if you cannot relate to her own internal conflict, this song still sends shivers through you.

Not all songs carry this deep weight of strife and woe. Sideshow has a definite New Orleans jazz vibe, with just enough slide trombone to visualize a walking march through the streets of the southern city on the gulf.

Culminating this is a beautiful song co-written by Darrell Scott, Another Day Borrowed. Tania Elizabeth does an exceptional job on fiddle in this riveting song, driving the message of battling life day to day.

Gauthier's unique vocal talents certainly possess the powerful passion to drive these songs home. Her success is a tribute to continue the walk through life, even if you are uncertain where it may lead.

CDs by Mary Gauthier

Rifles and Rosary Beads, 2018 Trouble & Love, 2014 Live at Blue Rock, 2013 The Foundling, 2010 Between Daylight and Dark, 2007 Mercy Now, 2005

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