From Dusk ‘Til Dawn
Artist: Sass Jordan
Label: Rbe Music
Reviewed: March, 2010
From Dusk Til Dawn is the eighth solo project by Juno Award winning Sass Jordan. The disc is a tremendous collection of rock, soul, and pop treasures that, with the exception of Tom Waits’ Ol’ 55, are all written by Jordan, thus demonstrating her incredible ability to lyrically convey her feelings. When set to music with her signature weathered rasp, the songs on Dusk will create a multitude of pleasant earworms that you will never want to rid your mind of.
The disc opens the lively What I Need. The beginning guitar riffs made me think for a moment that I was going to hear a cover of Simon and Garfunkel’s Mrs. Robinson. One gets the feeling when listening to this song that you’re sitting in on an intimate jam session in Sass’s living room. If you happen to ever wake up on the wrong side of the bed, the melodic structure of this song will change the tone of your day from negative to positive. See if I ain’t right!
Fell In Love Again will, no doubt, have Jordan’s audiences dancing and swaying in the aisles of her shows. Her hologram-like voice on Fell will invoke the names of Raitt, Midler and Bramlett but don’t get sucked in to trying to pigeon-hole Sass’s voice. Just enjoy the song. Again, it has uplifting hooks and a structure that will easily embed itself into your psyche.
The third cut, Awake, is one of my four favorites (if I had to chose a favorite – I love the whole darn album!). This soulful tune sent chills down my spine when I first heard it, causing me to hit “Repeat” on iTunes until I made myself realize that there were more songs to listen to. As she said in my interview with her, Sass is exactly right when she says that it’s as if Timothy B. Schmit was harmonizing right along with her. If I had my way in the music world, I’d mandate that this song would saturate the airwaves.
Awake is followed by Why Did You?, which, arguably, could give Jordan another vehicle to appeal to the still profitable Country music market. Don’t panic, you die-hard rock fans. There are not any “fiddles” or steel guitars on this tune. The song merely has the right emotional rawness that would reel in those who love the more contemporary flavor of Country music. Are you listening, Nashville? This is the only free advice you’re getting from me but just remember who told ya!
If you’re a Melissa Etheridge fan then you’re going to love Lonely. While the tune isn’t Etheridge-esque, Sass’s voice certainly is. The line, “If I wanted to be lonely my whole life thru, I’d stay right here in love with you”, will give women the world over the words they need to cause their man to take heed and start focusing on the queen in their life.
Love n Affection is the other song that ranks in my top four songs. While it is a melodically different tune, the song conjures up Bonnie Raitt’s I Can’t Make You Love Me. I love everything about this song: Sass’s voice, the structure of the song, and the guitar work. Like Awake, I kept hitting “Repeat”, I loved this song so much! I will bet you a dollar to a donut that, when Sass sings this in concert, the men in the audience will throw their room keys and t-shirts on the stage, they’ll fall so in love with her because of this song. While not a great visual for Sass, the “Love n Affection” will be genuine, just the same.
Nashville, if you haven’t listened to me up to this point, then Matter of Time will make give you a blinding glimpse of the obvious. The opening is reminiscent of Janis Joplin’s Mercedes Benz but smoothly segues into a beautiful and rich melody and chorus that only Sass can do.
Tom Waits fans will definitely stand up and take notice of Jordan’s cover of Ol’ 55. To me, it sounds like the Eagles are backing her up on the song but I know they didn’t. Now, wouldn’t that be a pairing to pay good money to see? But I digress. Like the tunes before it, Ol’ 55 will give the listener yet another earworm and a great one, at that.
Stronger is an inspirational song of encouragement. With Sass’s signature holographic-like voice, you’ll hear twinges of all the female vocalists who have influenced her through the years.
The closing song is the appropriately placed Home Again. The rich lyrics, sung in Jordan’s beautiful weathered rasp against the back drop of simple acoustic guitar work, is all that is needed to close this great work by Sass Jordan.
If Dusk Til Dawn is your first exposure to Sass Jordan, then you’ll want to pick up her earlier work as this CD will leave you wishing for more.