Barbara J Hunt – Play My Heart

I first encountered Barbara J Hunt in the cinema when I went to see Confetti on it’s release in 2006. She appears at the end of the film playing her song ‘King of My Heart‘ (on the album) at the nudist wedding. About a year later I saw Barbara J Hunt play live and thoroughly enjoyed her set. She reminded me of Paula Cole and Joni Mitchell. With a haunting voice and bewitching songs which are so easy to get lost in. When I was asked to review the album ‘Play My Heart‘, which is being re-released to coincide with the first showing of Confetti on UK terrestrial TV, I of course said ‘Yes’.

I’m listening to the album as I write and I can feel my self drifting into the music. I keep having to pull myself back to continue writing. Opening the album with ‘Play My Heart‘ (also from the Confetti Soundtrack) which is quite upbeat, with acoustic guitar and defined vocals, it feels very folk music which is helped along with the inclusion of violin breaks.

The whole album has the feel of a natural ease that many albums are lacking, Barbara J Hunt certainly seems to have mastered her talent, she’s comfortable and confident and this shines through in the vocals and music. ‘More Rain’ is most definitely my favourite of the songs, it’s got a simple, clean, fresh sound that is often missed in studio albums.

Play My Heart‘ closes with Barbara J Hunt’s own interpretation of the traditional hymn (and my personal favourite hymn) ‘Amazing Grace’ turning it into a classy song, where the traditional words fit in as though they always belonged there.

This album very much reminded me of how I felt the first time I heard Paula Cole’s album ‘This Fire’. The chills down my back at such a wonderful, heartfelt example of musical talent that you can listen to on a Sunday afternoon. This album shouldn’t be missed!

Published on Bristol Rocks.

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