Creating a generalized music site has brought me a great deal of broad-ranging referrals from many well-meaning friends and acquaintances. Most have been good, while other times the tastes just don’t quite line up. But occasionally, if I’m extremely lucky, I’m handed a jewel like Eryn Allen Kane. This one came from my friend David – actually the son of a friend – who presented it with the following description: “Here’s a song for you, ‘Piano Song’ by Eryn Allen Kane. She’s an excellent R&B singer from Chicago, and I think it has one of the best builds of any song I’ve heard.” Enticing as that introduction already sounded, I’d say David still undersold it considerably.
What a song! It’s phenomenal: the vivid production, the angelic backing singers, the driving horn charts, the frantic drumming accents, all striking. And then there’s the range of Kane’s incredible voice, both melodically and stylistically, as she glides effortlessly from the understated whisper of Corinne Bailey Rae to the blustery wailing of Beyonce – leading to the aforementioned electrifying build through the last segment, beginning at about the 2:40 mark. Overall, I found it an intoxicating, exhilarating, and abundantly rewarding four-and-a-quarter minutes, with the invaluable discovery assist to Chicago’s own David Z.
My only quibble, which has nothing at all to do with the music, would be with the title, ‘Piano Song,’ an unfortunate bland and nondescript label that meekly fails to capture the tune’s textured essence, while additionally presenting a rather inapt representation in that the piano is scarcely noticeable in the main mix (once past the 24-second introductory passage and the opening third). This gem, as I hope you’ll discern shortly, should almost too obviously have been named “We Try” or perhaps “Clinging to a Cloud.” Before it someday inevitably gets reissued to a deservingly wider audience, hopefully I’ll be able to have forwarded Ms. Kane that referral.